Advent Daybook, 12: Woe to you who shut the kingdom of heaven in people's faces

My Advent daybook for these 24 days of waiting. Join me, won't you? (see previous Advent daybook 2017 posts here)

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  Public Function  by Frank Kunert ( source )

Public Function by Frank Kunert (source)


music for today: "May you find a light", The Brilliance  (lyrics)

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The Lord God of hosts, he who touches the earth and it melts, and all who dwell in it mourn, and all of it rises like the Nile, and sinks again, like the Nile of Egypt; who builds his upper chambers in the heavens and founds his vault upon the earth; who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out upon the surface of the earth—the Lord is his name. ...
’For behold, I will command, and shake the house of Israel among all the nations as one shakes with a sieve, but no pebble shall fall to the earth. All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword, who say, ‘Disaster shall not overtake or meet us.’

—-

”Fret not yourself because of evildoers; be not envious of wrongdoers! For they will soon fade like the grass and wither like the green herb.

Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act. He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices!

Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil. For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the Lord shall inherit the land.

In just a little while, the wicked will be no more; though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there. But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace.”

—-

”‘But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter to go in. ...

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean.’
— Amos 9:5-6,9-10, Psalm 37:1-11 & Matthew 23:13-14, 23-25 (ESV)

* Sunday Scripture readings are taken from the Revised Common Lectionary (Year B). Daily Scripture readings are taken from the Book of Common Prayer (Year 2).


prayer for today:

Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown. Revelation 2:10, NIV

Lord our God, we come into your presence. Hear our prayers, we entreat you. Let your will be done among us; let your will be done for each one of us individually, and for our time. Let everything go according to your will, even if the way leads through tribulation, fear, and need. For in the end your goal will be reached. In the end you will fulfill your purpose, and your kingdom will come. Your kingdom will come to the honor of your name and for the redemption of all people still suffering on earth. Let your Word bring us blessing. May we go forward joyfully in the patience of Jesus Christ until times change, until a new day dawns and we are allowed to see your glory and your peace. Amen.
— Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt (1842–1919), via Plough.com

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(see all Advent daybook posts from 2016 here)