Daily scripture readings from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer

Tuesday, January 17

Today's readings include passages from Psalms, Isaiah, Ephesians and Mark.

Psalm 26

1 Vindicate me, O Lord,     for I have walked in my integrity,     and I have trusted in the Lord without wavering. 2 Prove me, O Lord, and try me;     test my heart and my mind. 3 For your steadfast love is before my eyes,     and I walk in your faithfulness. 4 I do not sit with men of falsehood,     nor do I consort with hypocrites. 5 I hate the assembly of evildoers,     and I will not sit with the wicked. 6 I wash my hands in innocence     and go around your altar, O Lord, 7 proclaiming thanksgiving aloud,     and telling all your wondrous deeds. 8 Lord, I love the habitation of your house     and the place where your glory dwells. 9 Do not sweep my soul away with sinners,     nor my life with bloodthirsty men, 10 in whose hands are evil devices,     and whose right hands are full of bribes. 11 But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity;     redeem me, and be gracious to me. 12 My foot stands on level ground;     in the great assembly I will bless the Lord.


Psalm 28

1 To you, O Lord, I call;     my rock, be not deaf to me,     lest, if you be silent to me,     I become like those who go down to the pit. 2 Hear the voice of my pleas for mercy,     when I cry to you for help,     when I lift up my hands     toward your most holy sanctuary. 3 Do not drag me off with the wicked,     with the workers of evil,     who speak peace with their neighbors     while evil is in their hearts. 4 Give to them according to their work     and according to the evil of their deeds;     give to them according to the work of their hands;     render them their due reward. 5 Because they do not regard the works of the Lord     or the work of his hands,     he will tear them down and build them up no more. 6 Blessed be the Lord!     For he has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy. 7 The Lord is my strength and my shield;     in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;     my heart exults,     and with my song I give thanks to him. 8 The Lord is the strength of his people;     he is the saving refuge of his anointed. 9 Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!     Be their shepherd and carry them forever.


Psalm 36

1 Transgression speaks to the wicked     deep in his heart;     there is no fear of God     before his eyes. 2 For he flatters himself in his own eyes     that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. 3 The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit;     he has ceased to act wisely and do good. 4 He plots trouble while on his bed;     he sets himself in a way that is not good;     he does not reject evil. 5 Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens,     your faithfulness to the clouds. 6 Your righteousness is like the mountains of God;     your judgments are like the great deep;     man and beast you save, O Lord. 7 How precious is your steadfast love, O God!     The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. 8 They feast on the abundance of your house,     and you give them drink from the river of your delights. 9 For with you is the fountain of life;     in your light do we see light. 10 Oh, continue your steadfast love to those who know you,     and your righteousness to the upright of heart! 11 Let not the foot of arrogance come upon me,     nor the hand of the wicked drive me away. 12 There the evildoers lie fallen;     they are thrust down, unable to rise.


Psalm 39

1 I said, “I will guard my ways,     that I may not sin with my tongue;     I will guard my mouth with a muzzle,     so long as the wicked are in my presence.” 2 I was mute and silent;     I held my peace to no avail,     and my distress grew worse. 3 My heart became hot within me.     As I mused, the fire burned;     then I spoke with my tongue: 4 “O Lord, make me know my end     and what is the measure of my days;     let me know how fleeting I am! 5 Behold, you have made my days a few handbreadths,     and my lifetime is as nothing before you.     Surely all mankind stands as a mere breath! Selah 6 Surely a man goes about as a shadow!     Surely for nothing they are in turmoil;     man heaps up wealth and does not know who will gather! 7 “And now, O Lord, for what do I wait?     My hope is in you. 8 Deliver me from all my transgressions.     Do not make me the scorn of the fool! 9 I am mute; I do not open my mouth,     for it is you who have done it. 10 Remove your stroke from me;     I am spent by the hostility of your hand. 11 When you discipline a man     with rebukes for sin,     you consume like a moth what is dear to him;     surely all mankind is a mere breath! Selah 12 “Hear my prayer, O Lord,     and give ear to my cry;     hold not your peace at my tears!     For I am a sojourner with you,     a guest, like all my fathers. 13 Look away from me, that I may smile again,     before I depart and am no more!”


Isaiah 44:9-20

9 All who fashion idols are nothing, and the things they delight in do not profit. Their witnesses neither see nor know, that they may be put to shame. 10 Who fashions a god or casts an idol that is profitable for nothing? 11 Behold, all his companions shall be put to shame, and the craftsmen are only human. Let them all assemble, let them stand forth. They shall be terrified; they shall be put to shame together. 12 The ironsmith takes a cutting tool and works it over the coals. He fashions it with hammers and works it with his strong arm. He becomes hungry, and his strength fails; he drinks no water and is faint. 13 The carpenter stretches a line; he marks it out with a pencil.He shapes it with planes and marks it with a compass. He shapes it into the figure of a man, with the beauty of a man, to dwell in a house. 14 He cuts down cedars, or he chooses a cypress tree or an oak and lets it grow strong among the trees of the forest. He plants a cedar and the rain nourishes it. 15 Then it becomes fuel for a man. He takes a part of it and warms himself; he kindles a fire and bakes bread. Also he makes a god and worships it; he makes it an idol and falls down before it. 16 Half of it he burns in the fire. Over the half he eats meat; he roasts it and is satisfied. Also he warms himself and says, “Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire!” 17 And the rest of it he makes into a god, his idol, and falls down to it and worships it. He prays to it and says, “Deliver me, for you are my god!” 18 They know not, nor do they discern, for he has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand. 19 No one considers, nor is there knowledge or discernment to say, “Half of it I burned in the fire; I also baked bread on its coals; I roasted meat and have eaten. And shall I make the rest of it an abomination? Shall I fall down before a block of wood?” 20 He feeds on ashes; a deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”


Ephesians 4:17-32

17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. 18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. 19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20 But that is not the way you learned Christ!— 21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 22 to put off your old self,which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. 26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. 28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. 29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.


Mark 3:20-35

20 Then he went home, and the crowd gathered again, so that they could not even eat. 21 And when his family heard it, they went out to seize him, for they were saying, “He is out of his mind.” 22 And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “by the prince of demons he casts out the demons.” 23 And he called them to him and said to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 26 And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but is coming to an end. 27 But no one can enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man. Then indeed he may plunder his house. 28 “Truly, I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the children of man, and whatever blasphemies they utter, 29 but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin” 30 for they were saying, “He has an unclean spirit.” 31 And his mother and his brothers came, and standing outside they sent to him and called him. 32 And a crowd was sitting around him, and they said to him, “Your mother and your brothers are outside, seeking you.” 33 And he answered them, “Who are my mother and my brothers?” 34 And looking about at those who sat around him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! 35 For whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.”

  English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.