Readings and Reflection for December 17, Friday of the Third Week of Advent


“The sceptre shall not depart from Judah.”
A reading from the Book of Genesis (Genesis 49:2.8-10)

In those days: Jacob called his sons, and said, “Assemble and hear, O sons of Jacob, and hearken to Israel your father. “Judah, your brothers shall praise you; your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies; your father’s sons shall bow down before you. Judah is a lion’s whelp; from the prey, my son, you have gone up. He stooped down, he lurked as a lion, and as a lioness; who dares rouse him up? The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he comes to whom it belongs; and to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.”

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM (Psalm 72: 1-2.3-4ab.7-8.17 (R. see 7)
R/. In his days shall justice flourish, and great peace forever.

O God, give your judgement to the king,
to a king’s son your justice,
that he may judge your people in justice,
and your poor in right judgement. R/.

May the mountains bring forth
peace for the people, and the hills justice.
May he defend the poor of the people,
and save the children of the needy. R/.

R/. In his days shall justice flourish, and great peace forever.

In his days shall justice flourish,
and great peace till the moon is no more.
He shall rule from sea to sea,
from the River to the bounds of the earth. R/.

May his name endure forever,
his name continue like the sun.
Every tribe shall be blest in him,
all nations shall call him blessed. R/.

Alleluia. Alleluia. Come, O wisdom of the Most High! You order all things with gentle power:
come and teach us the way of prudence.

The genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David.
The beginning of the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 1:1-17)

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.

The Gospel of the Lord.

In the record of Jesus’ family tree we learn that he was descended from Abraham. His DNA also matched those of kings, adulterers, godly men and women, a prostitute and a murderer. Jesus’ lineage shows us that Jesus the human person is the offspring of generations of saints and sinners, just as we are. Jesus the Divine one is connected to everyone regardless of social status, creed or way of life. Jesus is found in everyone, and everyone is found in Jesus. As we recognize that the whole of humanity is reflected in Jesus’ family, we renew our commitment to treat ourselves and all people with love and respect.


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