These readings are from the Anglican Church of Canada’s adaptation of the Revised Common Lectionary. On Sundays and feast days there is a link to the full readings.
Christmas Day (White or Gold)
Sunday, December 25th, 2016
In the early morning: ISAIAH 62:6-12; PSALM 97; TITUS 3:4-7; LUKE 2:(1-7) 8-20
During the day: ISAIAH 52:7-10; PSALM 98; HEBREWS 1:1-4 (5-12); JOHN 1:1-14
O God our Father,
whose Word has come among us
in the Holy Child of Bethlehem,
may the light of faith
illumine our hearts
and shine in our words and deeds;
through him who is Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
you wonderfully created
and yet more wonderfully restored our human nature.
May we share the divine life of your Son Jesus Christ,
who humbled himself to share our humanity,
and now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ISAIAH
Upon your walls, O Jerusalem, I have posted sentinels; all day and all night they shall never be silent. You who remind the Lord, take no rest, and give him no rest until he establishes Jerusalem and makes it renowned throughout the earth. The Lord has sworn by his right hand and by his mighty arm: I will not again give your grain to be food for your enemies, and foreigners shall not drink the wine for which you have laboured; but those who garner it shall eat it and praise the Lord, and those who gather it shall drink it in my holy courts. Go through, go through the gates, prepare the way for the people; build up, build up the highway, clear it of stones, lift up an ensign over the peoples. The Lord has proclaimed to the end of the earth: Say to daughter Zion, “See, your salvation comes; his reward is with him, and his recompense before him.” They shall be called, “The Holy People, The Redeemed of the Lord”; and you shall be called, “Sought Out, A City Not Forsaken.”
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.” Listen! Your sentinels lift up their voices, together they sing for joy; for in plain sight they see the return of the Lord to Zion. Break forth together into singing, you ruins of Jerusalem; for the Lord has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.
REFRAIN All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
The Lord is king; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of the isles be glad.
Clouds and darkness are round about him, righteousness and justice are the foundations of his throne. R
A fire goes before him and burns up his enemies on every side.
His lightnings light up the world; the earth sees it and is afraid. R
The mountains melt like wax at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.
The heavens declare his righteousness, and all the peoples see his glory. R
Confounded be all who worship carved images and delight in false gods! Bow down before him, all you gods.
Zion hears and is glad, and the cities of Judah rejoice, because of your judgements, O Lord. R
For you are the Lord, most high over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods.
The Lord loves those who hate evil; he preserves the lives of his saints and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. R
Light has sprung up for the righteous, and joyful gladness for those who are truehearted.
Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous, and give thanks to his holy name.
Refrain All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvellous things.
With his right hand and his holy arm has he won for himself the victory. R
The Lord has made known his victory; his righteousness has he openly shown in the sight of the nations.
He remembers his mercy and faithfulness to the house of Israel, and all the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God. R
Shout with joy to the Lord, all you lands; lift up your voice, rejoice, and sing.
Sing to the Lord with the harp, with the harp and the voice of song. R
With trumpets and the sound of the horn shout with joy before the King, the Lord.
Let the sea make a noise and all that is in it, the lands and those who dwell therein. R
Let the rivers clap their hands, and let the hills ring out with joy before the Lord, when he comes to judge the earth.
In righteousness shall he judge the world and the peoples with equity. R
A READING FROM THE LETTER OF PAUL TO TITUS
But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
A READING FROM THE LETTER TO THE HEBREWS
Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.
[For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son”? And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.” Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his servants flames of fire.” But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the righteous sceptre is the sceptre of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.” And, “In the beginning, Lord, you founded the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands; they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like clothing; like a cloak you will roll them up, and like clothing they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will never end.”]
HEBREWS 1:1-4 (5-12)
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
ACCORDING TO LUKE
[In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.]
In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see – I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favours!” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
LUKE 2:(1-7) 8-20
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
ACCORDING TO JOHN
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.
Prayer over the Gifts
in faith and joy
we celebrate the birth of your Son.
Increase our understanding and our love
of the riches you have revealed in him,
who is Lord now and for ever.
God of peace,
your Son Jesus Christ has reconciled us to you.
May all we offer you today
renew us as members of your household.
We ask this in his name.
Prayer After Communion
Source of truth and joy,
may we who have received the gift of divine life
always follow the way of your Son.
This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.
Father of all,
the child born for us is the Saviour of the world.
May he who made us your children
welcome us into your kingdom,
where he is alive and reigns with you now and for ever.
Lectionary citations are reprinted from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts, admin. by Augsburg Fortress. Reproduced by permission.
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