Readings for February 25th
FIRST READING: Genesis17:1-7, 15-16
L: A reading from Genesis.
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless. And I will make my covenant between me and you and will make you exceedingly numerous.” Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the ancestor of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. I will establish my covenant between me and you, and your offspring after you throughout their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you.”
God said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall give rise to nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.”
The Word of the Lord.
C: Thanks be to God.
PSALM: Psalm 22:23-31
L: You who fear the Lord, give praise! All you of Jacob’s line, give glory. Stand in awe of the Lord, all you off-spring of Israel.
C: For the Lord does not despise nor abhor the poor in their poverty; neither is the Lord’s face hidden from them; but when they cry out, the Lord hears them.
L: From you comes my praise in the great assembly; I will perform my vows in the sight of those who fear the Lord.
C: The poor shall eat and be satisfied, let those who seek the Lord give praise! May your hearts live forever!
L: All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord; all the families of nations shall bow before God.
C: For dominion belongs to the Lord, who rules over the nations.
L: Indeed, all who sleep in the earth shall bow down in worship;
all who go down to the dust, though they be dead, shall kneel before the Lord.
C: Their descendants shall serve the Lord, whom they shall proclaim to generations to come.
L: They shall proclaim God’s deliverance to a people yet unborn,
saying to them, “The Lord has acted!”
SECOND READING: Romans 4:13-25
L: A reading from Romans.
The promise that he would inherit the world did not come to Abraham or to his descendants through the law but through the righteousness of faith. If it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. For the law brings wrath; but where there is no law, neither is there violation.
For this reason it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his descendants, not only to the adherents of the law but also to those who share the faith of Abraham (for he is the father of all of us, as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”) in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. Hoping against hope, he believed that he would become “the father of many nations,” according to what was said, “So numerous shall your descendants be.” He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was already as good as dead (for he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb. No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, being fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.
Therefore his faith “was reckoned to him as righteousness.” Now the words, “it was reckoned to him,” were written not for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be reckoned to us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was handed over to death for our trespasses and was raised for our justification.
The Word of the Lord.
C: Thanks be to God.
PSALM: Psalm 50:1-6
GOSPEL: Mark 8:31-38
P: The Gospel according to Mark.
C: Glory to you, O Lord.
P: Jesus began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life?
Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
C: Praise to you, O Christ.
Readings adapted from Sundays and Seasons