Daily scripture readings from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer

Wednesday, February 28

Today's readings include passages from Psalms, Genesis, 1 Corinthians and Mark.

Psalm 72

1 Give the king your justice, O God,     and your righteousness to the royal son! 2 May he judge your people with righteousness,     and your poor with justice! 3 Let the mountains bear prosperity for the people,     and the hills, in righteousness! 4 May he defend the cause of the poor of the people,     give deliverance to the children of the needy,     and crush the oppressor! 5 May they fear you while the sun endures,     and as long as the moon, throughout all generations! 6 May he be like rain that falls on the mown grass,     like showers that water the earth! 7 In his days may the righteous flourish,     and peace abound, till the moon be no more! 8 May he have dominion from sea to sea,     and from the River to the ends of the earth! 9 May desert tribes bow down before him,     and his enemies lick the dust! 10 May the kings of Tarshish and of the coastlands     render him tribute;      may the kings of Sheba and Seba     bring gifts! 11 May all kings fall down before him,     all nations serve him! 12 For he delivers the needy when he calls,     the poor and him who has no helper. 13 He has pity on the weak and the needy,     and saves the lives of the needy. 14 From oppression and violence he redeems their life,     and precious is their blood in his sight. 15 Long may he live;     may gold of Sheba be given to him!     May prayer be made for him continually,     and blessings invoked for him all the day! 16 May there be abundance of grain in the land;     on the tops of the mountains may it wave;     may its fruit be like Lebanon;     and may people blossom in the cities     like the grass of the field! 17 May his name endure forever,     his fame continue as long as the sun!     May people be blessed in him,     all nations call him blessed! 18 Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,     who alone does wondrous things. 19 Blessed be his glorious name forever;     may the whole earth be filled with his glory!     Amen and Amen! 20 The prayers of David, the son of Jesse, are ended.

Psalm 119:73-96

73 Your hands have made and fashioned me;     give me understanding that I may learn your commandments. 74 Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice,     because I have hoped in your word. 75 I know, O Lord, that your rules are righteous,     and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. 76 Let your steadfast love comfort me     according to your promise to your servant. 77 Let your mercy come to me, that I may live;     for your law is my delight. 78 Let the insolent be put to shame,     because they have wronged me with falsehood;     as for me, I will meditate on your precepts. 79 Let those who fear you turn to me,     that they may know your testimonies. 80 May my heart be blameless in your statutes,     that I may not be put to shame! 81 My soul longs for your salvation;     I hope in your word. 82 My eyes long for your promise;     I ask, “When will you comfort me?” 83 For I have become like a wineskin in the smoke,     yet I have not forgotten your statutes. 84 How long must your servant endure?     When will you judge those who persecute me? 85 The insolent have dug pitfalls for me;     they do not live according to your law. 86 All your commandments are sure;     they persecute me with falsehood; help me! 87 They have almost made an end of me on earth,     but I have not forsaken your precepts. 88 In your steadfast love give me life,     that I may keep the testimonies of your mouth. 89 Forever, O Lord, your word     is firmly fixed in the heavens. 90 Your faithfulness endures to all generations;     you have established the earth, and it stands fast. 91 By your appointment they stand this day,     for all things are your servants. 92 If your law had not been my delight,     I would have perished in my affliction. 93 I will never forget your precepts,     for by them you have given me life. 94 I am yours; save me,     for I have sought your precepts. 95 The wicked lie in wait to destroy me,     but I consider your testimonies. 96 I have seen a limit to all perfection,     but your commandment is exceedingly broad.

Genesis 42:18-28

18 On the third day Joseph said to them, “Do this and you will live, for I fear God: 19 if you are honest men, let one of your brothers remain confined where you are in custody, and let the rest go and carry grain for the famine of your households, 20 and bring your youngest brother to me. So your words will be verified, and you shall not die.” And they did so. 21 Then they said to one another, “In truth we are guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the distress of his soul, when he begged us and we did not listen. That is why this distress has come upon us.” 22 And Reuben answered them, “Did I not tell you not to sin against the boy? But you did not listen. So now there comes a reckoning for his blood.” 23 They did not know that Joseph understood them, for there was an interpreter between them. 24 Then he turned away from them and wept. And he returned to them and spoke to them. And he took Simeon from them and bound him before their eyes. 25 And Joseph gave orders to fill their bags with grain, and to replace every man's money in his sack, and to give them provisions for the journey. This was done for them. 26 Then they loaded their donkeys with their grain and departed. 27 And as one of them opened his sack to give his donkey fodder at the lodging place, he saw his money in the mouth of his sack. 28 He said to his brothers, “My money has been put back; here it is in the mouth of my sack!” At this their hearts failed them, and they turned trembling to one another, saying, “What is this that God has done to us?”

1 Corinthians 5:9-6:8

9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.” 6:1 When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? 2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? 3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! 4 So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church? 5 I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, 6 but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? 7 To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? But you yourselves wrong and defraud—even your own brothers!

Mark 4:1-20

1 Again he began to teach beside the sea. And a very large crowd gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat in it on the sea, and the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land. 2 And he was teaching them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them: 3 “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. 5 Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. 6 And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. 8 And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” 9 And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” 10 And when he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parables. 11 And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, 12 so that “they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand, lest they should turn and be forgiven.” 13 And he said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? 14 The sower sows the word. 15 And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them. 16 And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. 17 And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away. 18 And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, 19 but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 20 But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”

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