Thursday, February 25, 2021
Reading (Esther 14:1, 3-5, 12-14)
 Queen Esther also, fearing the danger that was at hand, had recourse to the Lord.  And she prayed to the Lord the God of Israel, saying: O my Lord, who alone art our king, help me a desolate woman, and who have no other helper but thee.
 My danger is in my hands.  I have heard of my father that thou, O Lord, didst take Israel from among all nations, and our fathers from all their predecessors, to possess them as an everlasting inheritance, and thou hast done to them as thou hast promised.
 Remember, O Lord, and shew thyself to us in the time of our tribulation, and give me boldness, O Lord, king of gods, and of all power:  Give me a well ordered speech in my mouth in the presence of the lion, and turn his heart to the hatred of our enemy, that both he himself may perish, and the rest that consent to him.
 But deliver us by thy hand, and help me, who have no other helper, but thee, O Lord, who hast the knowledge of all things.
Gospel (Matthew 7:7-12)
 “Keep asking, and it will be given to you; keep seeking, and you will find; keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who keeps asking receives; he who keeps seeking finds; and to him who keeps knocking, the door will be opened.
 Is there anyone here who, if his son asks him for a loaf of bread, will give him a stone?  or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?
 So if you, even though you are bad, know how to give your children gifts that are good, how much more will your Father in heaven keep giving good things to those who keep asking him!
 “Always treat others as you would like them to treat you; that sums up the teaching of the Torah and the Prophets.
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Reading (Jonah 3:1-10)
 The word of Adonai came to Yonah a second time: “Set out for the great city of Ninveh, and proclaim to it the message I will give you.”  So Yonah set out and went to Ninveh, as Adonai had said.
Now Ninveh was such a large city that it took three days just to cross it.  Yonah began his entry into the city and had finished only his first day of proclaiming, ‘In forty days Ninveh will be overthrown,’  when the people of Ninveh believed God.
They proclaimed a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least.  When the news reached the king of Ninveh, he got up from his throne, took off his robe, put on sackcloth and sat in ashes.
 He then had this proclamation made throughout Ninveh: “By decree of the king and his nobles, no person or animal, herd or flock, is to put anything in his mouth; they are neither to eat nor drink water.
 They must be covered with sackcloth, both people and animals; and they are to cry out to God with all their might — let each of them turn from his evil way and from the violence they practice.
 Who knows? Maybe God will change his mind, relent and turn from his fierce anger; and then we won’t perish.”  When God saw by their deeds that they had turned from their evil way, he relented and did not bring on them the punishment he had threatened.
Gospel (Luke 11:29-32)
 As the people crowded around him, Yeshua went on to say, “This generation is a wicked generation! It asks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it — except the sign of Yonah. For just as Yonah became a sign to the people of Ninveh, so will the Son of Man be for this generation.
 The Queen of the South will appear at the Judgment with the people of this generation and condemn them; for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Shlomo, and what is here now is greater than Shlomo.
 The people of Ninveh will stand up at the Judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they turned to God from their sins when Yonah preached, and what is here now is greater than Yonah.
Tuesday, February 23, 2021
Reading (Isaiah 55:10-11)
 For just as rain and snow fall from the sky and do not return there, but water the earth,
causing it to bud and produce, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater;  so is my word that goes out from my mouth — it will not return to me unfulfilled; but it will accomplish what I intend, and cause to succeed what I sent it to do.”
Gospel (Matthew 6:7-15)
 “And when you pray, don’t babble on and on like the pagans, who think God will hear them better if they talk a lot.  Don’t be like them, because your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
 You, therefore, pray like this: ‘Our Father in heaven! May your Name be kept holy.  May your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven.  Give us the food we need today.
 Forgive us what we have done wrong, as we too have forgiven those who have wronged us.  And do not lead us into hard testing, but keep us safe from the Evil One. For kingship, power and glory are yours forever. Amen.’
 For if you forgive others their offenses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you;  but if you do not forgive others their offenses, your heavenly Father will not forgive yours.