Let your continual mercy, O Lord, cleanse and defend your Church; and, because it cannot continue in safety without your help, protect and govern it always by your goodness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son.
The more I
the more they went from me;
sacrificing to the Baals,
and offering incense to idols.
Yet it was I
who taught Ephraim to walk,
I took them up in my arms;
but they did not know that I healed them.
I led them with
cords of human kindness,
with bands of love.
I was to them
who lift infants to their cheeks.
I bent down to them and fed them.
return to the land of Egypt,
and Assyria shall be their king,
because they have refused to return to me.
The sword rages
in their cities,
it consumes their oracle-priests,
and devours because of their schemes.
My people are
bent on turning away from me.
To the Most High they call,
but he does not raise them up at all.
How can I give
you up, Ephraim?
How can I hand you over, O Israel?
How can I make
you like Admah?
How can I treat you like Zeboiim?
recoils within me;
my compassion grows warm and tender.
I will not
execute my fierce anger;
I will not again destroy Ephraim;
for I am God
and no mortal,
the Holy One in your midst,
and I will not come in wrath.
They shall go
after the Lord,
who roars like a lion;
his children shall come trembling from the west.
They shall come
trembling like birds from Egypt,
and like doves from the land of Assyria;
and I will return them to their homes, says the Lord.
Psalm 107:1-9, 43
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is
and his mercy endures for ever.
Let all those
whom the Lord has redeemed proclaim *
that he redeemed them from the hand of the foe.
them out of the lands; *
from the east and from the west,
from the north and from the south.
in desert wastes; *
they found no way to a city where they might dwell.
hungry and thirsty; *
their spirits languished within them.
Then they cried
to the Lord in their trouble, *
and he delivered them from their distress.
He put their
feet on a straight path *
to go to a city where they might dwell.
Let them give
thanks to the Lord for his mercy *
and the wonders he does for his children.
satisfies the thirsty *
and fills the hungry with good things.
Whoever is wise
will ponder these things, *
and consider well the mercies of the Lord.
Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23
Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.
I, the Teacher, when king over Israel in Jerusalem, applied my mind to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven; it is an unhappy business that God has given to human beings to be busy with. I saw all the deeds that are done under the sun; and see, all is vanity and a chasing after wind.
I hated all my toil in which I had toiled under the sun, seeing that I must leave it to those who come after me -- and who knows whether they will be wise or foolish? Yet they will be master of all for which I toiled and used my wisdom under the sun. This also is vanity. So I turned and gave my heart up to despair concerning all the toil of my labors under the sun, because sometimes one who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by another who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil. What do mortals get from all the toil and strain with which they toil under the sun? For all their days are full of pain, and their work is a vexation; even at night their minds do not rest. This also is vanity.
Hear this, all you peoples;
hearken, all you who dwell in the world, *
you of high degree and low, rich and poor together.
My mouth shall
speak of wisdom, *
and my heart shall meditate on understanding.
I will incline
my ear to a proverb *
and set forth my riddle upon the harp.
Why should I be
afraid in evil days, *
when the wickedness of those at my heels surrounds me,
of those who put their trust in their goods, *
and boast of their great riches?
We can never
ransom ourselves, *
or deliver to God the price of our life;
For the ransom
of our life is so great, *
that we should never have enough to pay it,
In order to
live for ever and ever, *
and never see the grave.
For we see that
the wise die also;
like the dull and stupid they perish *
and leave their wealth to those who come after them.
shall be their homes for ever,
their dwelling places from generation to generation, *
though they call the lands after their own names.
honored, they cannot live for ever; *
they are like the beasts that perish.
If you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth, for you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life is revealed, then you also will be revealed with him in glory.
Put to death, therefore, whatever in you is earthly: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed (which is idolatry). On account of these the wrath of God is coming on those who are disobedient. These are the ways you also once followed, when you were living that life. But now you must get rid of all such things-- anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have stripped off the old self with its practices and have clothed yourselves with the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of its creator. In that renewal there is no longer Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all!
Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me." But he said to him, "Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?" And he said to them, "Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions." Then he told them a parable: "The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, `What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?' Then he said, `I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, `Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.' But God said to him, `You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?' So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God."