The Sunday Lectionary Readings
TUESDAY, December 25, 2018 - Christmas Day
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)
Prayer of the Day
All-powerful and unseen God, the coming of your light into our world has brightened weary hearts with peace. Call us out of darkness, and empower us to proclaim the birth of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
6 Upon your walls, O Jerusalem,
I have posted sentinels;
all day and all night
they shall never be silent.
You who remind the Lord,
take no rest,
7 and give him no rest
until he establishes Jerusalem
and makes it renowned throughout the earth.
8 The Lord has sworn by his right hand
and by his mighty arm:
I will not again give your grain
to be food for your enemies,
and foreigners shall not drink the wine
for which you have labored;
9 but those who garner it shall eat it
and praise the Lord,
and those who gather it shall drink it
in my holy courts.
10 Go through, go through the gates,
prepare the way for the people;
build up, build up the highway,
clear it of stones,
lift up an ensign over the peoples.
11 The Lord has proclaimed
to the end of the earth:
Say to daughter Zion,
“See, your salvation comes;
his reward is with him,
and his recompense before him.”
12 They shall be called, “The Holy People,
The Redeemed of the Lord”;
and you shall be called, “Sought Out,
A City Not Forsaken.”
Psalm 97 Dominus regnavit
1 The Lord is King;
let the earth rejoice; *
let the multitude of the isles be glad.
2 Clouds and darkness are round about him, *
righteousness and justice are the foundations of his throne.
3 A fire goes before him *
and burns up his enemies on every side.
4 His lightnings light up the world; *
the earth sees it and is afraid.
5 The mountains melt like wax at the presence of the Lord, *
at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.
6 The heavens declare his righteousness, *
and all the peoples see his glory.
7 Confounded be all who worship carved images
and delight in false gods! *
Bow down before him, all you gods.
8 Zion hears and is glad, and the cities of Judah rejoice, *
because of your judgments, O Lord.
9 For you are the Lord,
most high over all the earth; *
you are exalted far above all gods.
10 The Lord loves those who hate evil; *
he preserves the lives of his saints
and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
11 Light has sprung up for the righteous, *
and joyful gladness for those who are true hearted.
12 Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous, *
and give thanks to his holy Name.
3:4 But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. 6 This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
Alleluia. A holy day has dawned upon us. Come, you nations, and a dore the Lord. For today a great light has come up on the earth. Alleluia.
Luke 2:[1-7] 8-20
The Birth of Jesus
2:[1 In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 All went to their own towns to be registered. 4 Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5 He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.]
The Shepherds and the Angels
8 In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. 17 When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
Click HERE to read today's Christmas message
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in deepest night, are lit up with a brilliant sight. Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given. The spread of his influence and of his peace will never end. Therefore, go out into the world with great joy, and the grace of Bethlehem’s matchless Child, the love of the God who never ceases to amaze, and the fellowship of the Spirit who never wearies, will be with you this holy night and evermore.
Thanks be to God!
Optional parts of the readings are set off in square brackets.
The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission.
Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!