Psalm 51:1-12 NCV
"God, be merciful to me because you are loving. Because you are always ready to be merciful, wipe out all my wrongs. Wash away all my guilt and make me clean again. I know about my wrongs, and I can’t forget my sin. You are the only one I have sinned against; I have done what you say is wrong. You are right when you speak and fair when you judge. I was brought into this world in sin. In sin my mother gave birth to me. You want me to be completely truthful, so teach me wisdom. Take away my sin, and I will be clean. Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Make me hear sounds of joy and gladness; let the bones you crushed be happy again. Turn your face from my sins and wipe out all my guilt. Create in me a pure heart, God, and make my spirit right again. Do not send me away from you or take your Holy Spirit away from me. Give me back the joy of your salvation. Keep me strong by giving me a willing spirit."
"I tell you that Christ became a servant of the Jews to show that God’s promises to the Jewish ancestors are true. And he also did this so that those who are not Jews could give glory to God for the mercy he gives to them. It is written in the Scriptures: “So I will praise you among the non-Jewish people. I will sing praises to your name.” The Scripture also says, “Be happy, you who are not Jews, together with his people.” Again the Scripture says, “All you who are not Jews, praise the Lord. All you people, sing praises to him.” And Isaiah says, “A new king will come from the family of Jesse. I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with much joy and peace while you trust in him. Then your hope will overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit."
"So I, Paul, am a prisoner of Christ Jesus for you who are not Jews. Surely you have heard that God gave me this work to tell you about his grace. He let me know his secret by showing it to me. I have already written a little about this. If you read what I wrote then, you can see that I truly understand the secret about the Christ. People who lived in other times were not told that secret. But now, through the Spirit, God has shown that secret to his holy apostles and prophets. This is that secret: that through the Good News those who are not Jews will share with the Jews in God’s blessing. They belong to the same body, and they share together in the promise that God made in Christ Jesus. By God’s special gift of grace given to me through his power, I became a servant to tell that Good News. I am the least important of all God’s people, but God gave me this gift—to tell those who are not Jews the Good News about the riches of Christ, which are too great to understand fully. And God gave me the work of telling all people about the plan for his secret, which has been hidden in him since the beginning of time. He is the One who created everything. His purpose was that through the church all the rulers and powers in the heavenly world will now know God’s wisdom, which has so many forms. This agrees with the purpose God had since the beginning of time, and he carried out his plan through Christ Jesus our Lord. In Christ we can come before God with freedom and without fear. We can do this through faith in Christ. So I ask you not to become discouraged because of the sufferings I am having for you. My sufferings are for your glory."
Matthew 22:1-14 NCV
"Jesus again used stories to teach them. He said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding feast for his son. The king invited some people to the feast. When the feast was ready, the king sent his servants to tell the people, but they refused to come. “Then the king sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited that my feast is ready. I have killed my best bulls and calves for the dinner, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding feast.’ “But the people refused to listen to the servants and left to do other things. One went to work in his field, and another went to his business. Some of the other people grabbed the servants, beat them, and killed them. The king was furious and sent his army to kill the murderers and burn their city. “After that, the king said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready. I invited those people, but they were not worthy to come. So go to the street corners and invite everyone you find to come to my feast.’ So the servants went into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, both good and bad. And the wedding hall was filled with guests. “When the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man who was not dressed for a wedding. The king said, ‘Friend, how were you allowed to come in here? You are not dressed for a wedding.’ But the man said nothing. So the king told some servants, ‘Tie this man’s hands and feet. Throw him out into the darkness, where people will cry and grind their teeth with pain.’ “Yes, many are invited, but only a few are chosen.”"
For more information on why I include these posts read "A Story to Embody"
Scripture readings from this week are from Holy Trinity Anglican Church. Sermons that accompany these posts are available there.