FIRST READING

“The Lord takes delight in you.”

A reading from the Book of Isaiah (Isaiah 62:1-5)

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a burning torch. The nations shall see your vindication, and all the kings your glory; and you shall be called by a new name which the mouth of the Lord will give. You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. You shall no more be termed Forsaken, and your land shall no more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called My delight is in her, and your land Married; for the Lord delights in you, and your land shall be married. For as a young man marries a virgin, so shall your sons marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 89:4-5. 16-17.27 and 29 (R. cf. 2a)

R/. I will sing forever of your mercies, O Lord.

“With my chosen one I have made a covenant;

I have sworn to David my servant:

I will establish your descendants forever,

and set up your throne through all ages.” R/.

“How blessed the people who know your praise,

who walk, O Lord, in the light of your face,

who find their joy every day in your name,

who make your justice their joyful acclaim.” R/.

“He will call out to me, ‘You are my father,

my God, the rock of my salvation. ’

I will keep my faithful love for him always;

With him my covenant shall last.” R/.

SECOND READING

Paul gives witness to Christ, the son of David.

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (Acts13:16-17.22-25)

[When Paul came to Antioch of Pisidia, he stood up in the synagogue,) and motioning with his hand said: “Men of Israel, and you that fear God, listen. The God of this people Israel chose our fathers and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. Then he raised up David to be their king; of whom he testified and said, ‘I have found in David, the son of Jesse, a man after my heart, who will do all my will.’ Of this man’s posterity God has brought to Israel a Saviour, Jesus, as he promised. Before his coming John had preached a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. And as John was finishing his course, he said, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but after me one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.”’

The word of the Lord.

ALLELUIA

Alleluia. Tomorrow the wickedness of the earth will be destroyed: the Saviour of the world will rule over us. Alleluia.

GOSPEL

The genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David.

The beginning of the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew1:1-25)

The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, and Judah the father of Perez and Zerah by Tamar, and Perez the father of Hezron, and Hezron the father of Ram, and Ram the father of Amminadab, and Amminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon, and Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, and Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asa, and Asa the father of Jehoshaphat, and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, and Joram the father of Uzziah, and Uzziah the father of Jotham, and Jotham the father of Ahaz, and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos, and Amos the father of Josiah, and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon. And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Shealtiel, and Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, and Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, and Abiud the father of Eliakim, and Eliakim the father of Azor, and Azor the father of Zadok, and Zadok the father of Achim, and Achim the father of Eliud, and Eliud the father of Eleazar, and Eleazar the father of Matthan, and Matthan the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ. So all the generations from Abraham to David were fourteen generations, and from David to the deportation to Babylon fourteen generations, and from the deportation to Babylon to the Christ fourteen generations.

Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit; and her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to send her away quietly. But as he considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit; she will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: “Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel” (which means, God with us). When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took his wife, but knew her not until she had borne a son; and he called his name Jesus.

The Gospel of the Lord.

TODAY’S REFLECTION

Do you not have any cause in your life to give thanks to God? Today, Zechariah bursts out singing the ‘Benedictus’ just as the ‘Magnificat’ of Mary (Lk 1:46-56) and Hannah (1 Sam 2:1-11). Even if you think that your life and situations have been something close to hell this year, still “give thanks to God in all circumstances for that is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess 5:18). Really, our thanksgiving adds nothing to his greatness, rather it profits us for salvation. When David thought of building for the Lord from the little he had, God multiplied his blessings (2 Sam 7:9-16).

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