November 29, 2018

Advent and Christmas (Year C)

Psalm 25:1-10

1I offer you my heart, LORD God,

2and I trust you.

Don't make me ashamed

or let enemies defeat me.

3Don't disappoint any

of your worshippers,

but disappoint all

deceitful liars.

4Show me your paths

and teach me to follow;

5guide me by your truth

and instruct me.

You keep me safe,

and I always trust you.

6Please, LORD, remember,

you have always

been patient and kind.

7Forget each wrong I did

when I was young.

Show how truly kind you are

and remember me.

8You are honest and merciful,

and you teach sinners

how to follow your path.

9You lead humble people

to do what is right

and to stay on your path.

10In everything you do,

you are kind and faithful

to everyone who keeps

our agreement with you.

Nehemiah 9:6-15

6You alone are the LORD,

Creator of the heavens

and all the stars,

Creator of the earth

and those who live on it,

Creator of the ocean

and all its creatures.

You are the source of life,

praised by the stars

that fill the heavens.

7You are the LORD our God,

the one who chose Abram—

you brought him from Ur

in Babylonia

and named him Abraham.

8Because he was faithful,

you made an agreement

to give his descendants

the land of the Canaanites

and Hittites,

of the Amorites and Perizzites,

and of the Jebusites

and Girgashites.

Now you have kept your promise,

just as you always do.

9When our ancestors

were in Egypt,

you saw their suffering;

when they were at the Red Sea,

you heard their cry for help.

10You knew that the King of Egypt

and his officials and his nation

had ill-treated your people.

So you worked fearsome miracles

against the Egyptians

and earned a reputation

that still remains.

11You divided the deep sea,

and your people walked through

on dry land.

But you tossed their enemies in,

and they sank down

like a heavy stone.

12Each day you led your people

with a thick cloud,

and at night you showed the way

with a flaming fire.

13At Sinai you came down

from heaven,

and you gave your people

good laws and teachings

that are fair and honest.

14You commanded them to respect

your holy Sabbath,

and you instructed

your servant Moses

to teach them your laws.

15When they were hungry,

you sent bread from heaven,

and when they were thirsty,

you let water flow

from a rock.

Then you commanded them

to capture the land

that you had solemnly promised.

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

1I don't need to write to you about the time or date when all this will happen.2You know that the Lord's return will be as a thief coming at night.3People will think they are safe and secure. But destruction will suddenly strike them like the pains of a woman about to give birth. And they won't escape.

4My dear friends, you don't live in darkness, and so that day won't surprise you like a thief.5You belong to the light and live in the day. We don't live in the night or belong to the dark.6Others may sleep, but we should stay awake and be alert.7People sleep during the night, and some even get drunk.8But we belong to the day. So we must stay sober and let our faith and love be like a suit of armour. Our firm hope that we will be saved is our helmet.

9God doesn't intend to punish us, but wants us to be saved by our Lord Jesus Christ.10Christ died for us, so that we could live with him, whether we are alive or dead when he comes.11That's why you must encourage and help each other, just as you are already doing.