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Old Testament Readings

Please select one of the following readings from the Old Testament:

OT 1 
Maccabees     12:43-46

Judas, the ruler of Israel,
     took up a collection among all his soldiers,
amounting to two thousand silver drachmas,
     which he sent to Jerusalem to provide for an expiatory sacrifice.
In doing this he acted in a very excellent and noble way,
     inasmuch as he had the resurrection of the dead in view;
for if he were not expecting the fallen to rise again,
     it would have been useless and foolish to pray for them in death.
But if he did this with a view to the splendid reward
     that awaits those who had gone to rest in godliness,
it was a holy and pious thought.
Thus he made atonement for the dead
     that they might be freed from this sin.
The word of the Lord. 

OT 2   
Wisdom          3:1-6, 9

The souls of the just are in the hand of God
     and no torment shall touch them.
They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead;
     and their passing away was thought an affliction
 and their going forth from us, utter destruction.
     But they are in peace.
For if in the eyes of men, indeed they be punished,
     yet is their hope full of immortality;
Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed,
     because God tried them,
 and found them worthy of himself.
As gold in the furnace, he proved them,
     and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself.
Those who trust in him shall understand truth,
     and the faithful shall abide with him in love:
Because grace and mercy are with his holy ones,
     and his care is with his elect.
The word of the Lord.

OT 3    
Wisdom          4:7-15

The just, though they die early,
     shall be at rest.
For the age that is honorable comes not
     with the passing of time,
     nor can it be measured in terms of years.
Rather, understanding is the hoary crown,
     and an unsullied life, the attainment of old age.
Those who pleased God were loved;
     they who lived among sinners were transported–
Snatched away, lest wickedness pervert their mind
     or deceit beguile their soul;
For the witchery of paltry things obscures what is right
     and the whirl of desire transforms the innocent mind.
Having become perfect in a short while,
     they reached the fullness of a long career;
for their souls were pleasing to the Lord,
     therefore he sped them out of the midst of wickedness.
But the people saw and did not understand,
     nor did they take this into account.
The word of the Lord.

OT 4   
Isaiah      25:6a, 7-9

On this mountain the Lord of hosts
     will provide for all peoples.
On this mountain he will destroy
     the veil that veils all peoples,
The web that is woven over all nations;
     he will destroy death forever.
The Lord God will wipe away
     the tears from all faces;
The reproach of his people he will remove
     from the whole earth; for the Lord has spoken.
     On that day it will be said:
“Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us!
     This is the Lord for whom we looked;
     let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!”
The word of the Lord.

OT 5
Lamentations     3:17-26

My soul is deprived of peace,
     I have forgotten what happiness is;
I tell myself my future is lost,
     all that I hoped for from the Lord.
The thought of my homeless poverty
     is wormwood and gall;
Remembering it over and over
     leaves my soul downcast within me.
But I will call this to mind,
     as my reason to have hope:
The favors of the Lord are not exhausted,
     his mercies are not spent;
They are renewed each morning,
     so great is his faithfulness.
My portion is the Lord, says my soul;
     therefore will I hope in him.
Good is the Lord to one who waits for him,
     to the soul that seeks him;
It is good to hope in silence
     for the saving help of the Lord.
The word of the Lord.

OT 6  
Ecclesiastes           3:1-11

There is an appointed time for everything,
          and a time for every thing under the heavens.
A time to be born, and a time to die;
          a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
          a time to tear down, and a time to build.
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
          a time to mourn, and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
          a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
          a time to keep, and a time to cast away.
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
          a time to be silent, and a time to speak.
A time to love, and a time to hate;
          a time of war, and a time of peace.
The word of the Lord. 

OT 7

Job 19:1, 23-26

Oh, would that my words were written down! Would that they were inscribed in a record:
          That with an iron chisel and with lead they were cut in the rock forever! 
But as for me, I know that my Vindicator lives, and that he will at last stand forth upon the dust;
          And from my flesh I shall see God; my inmost being is consumed with longing.

OT 8
Daniel 12:1-3

A reading from the book of the prophet Daniel

I, Daniel, mourned and I heard this word of the Lord: "At that time
there shall arise Michael, the great prince, guardian of your people; It shall
be a time unsurpassed in distress since nations began until that time.
At that time your people shall escape, everyone who is found written in the
book. Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake;
some shall live forever, others shall be an everlasting horror and disgrace.
But the wise shall shine brightly like the splendor of the firmament,
and those who lead the many to justice shall be like the stars forever.

The Word of the Lord

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