Old Testament Readings (First Reading)

Old Testament Readings (First)

Please select one.


1. A reading from the second Book of Maccabees (2 Mac 12:43-46)

Judas, the ruler of Israel, took up a collection among all his soldiers, amounting to two thousand silver drachmas, which he sent to Jerusalem to provide for an expiatory sacrifice. In doing this he acted in a very excellent and noble way, inasmuch as he had the resurrection of the dead in view; for if he were not expecting the fallen to rise again, it would have been useless and foolish to pray for them in death. But if he did this with a view to the splendid reward that awaits those who had gone to rest in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be freed from this sin.

The word of the Lord.


2. A reading from the Book of Job (Job 19:1, 23-27a)

Job answered Bildad the Shuhite and said: Oh, would that my words were written down! Would that they were inscribed in a record:
That with an iron chisel and with lead they were cut in the rock forever! But as for me, I know that my Vindicator lives, and what he will at last stand forth upon the dust; Whom I myself shall see: my own eyes, not another’s, shall behold him; And from my flesh I shall see God; my inmost being is consumed with longing.

The word of the Lord.


3. A reading from the Book of Wisdom (Wisdom 3:1-9)

The souls of the just are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch them. They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; and their passing away was thought an affliction and their going forth from us, utter destruction. But they are in peace. For it before men, indeed they be punished, yet is their hope full of immortality.Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed, because God tried them and found them worthy of himself. As gold in the furnace, he proved them, and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself. In the time of their visitation they shall shine, and shall dart about as sparks through stubble. They shall judge nations and rule over peoples, and the Lord shall be their King forever. Those who trust in him shall understand truth, and the faithful shall abide with him in love. Because grace and mercy are with his holy ones, and his care is with his elect.

The word of the Lord.


4.  A reading from the Book of Wisdom (Wisdom 4:7-15)

The just man, though he dies early, shall be at rest. For the age that is honorable comes not with the passing of time, nor can it be measured in terms of years. Rather, understanding is the hoary crown for men, and an unsullied life, the attainment of old age. He who pleased God was loved; he who lived among sinners was transported-snatched away, lest wickedness perverts his mind or deceit beguile his soul; for the witchery of paltry things obscures what is right and the whirl of desire transforms the innocent mind. Having become perfect in a short while, he reached the fullness of a long career; for his soul was pleasing to the Lord, therefore he sped him out of the midst of wickedness. But the people saw and did not understand, nor did they take this into account.

The word of the Lord.


5. A reading from the Book of the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 25:6a, 7-9)

On this mountain the Lord of hosts will provide for all peoples. On this mountain he will destroy the veil that veils all peoples, the web that is woven over all nations; he will destroy death forever.
The Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces. The reproach of his people will be removed from the whole earth; for the Lord has spoken. On that day it will be said: “Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us! This is the Lord for whom we looked; let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!”

The word of the Lord.


6. A reading from the Book of Lamentations (Lam 3:17-26)

My soul is deprived of peace, I have forgotten what happiness is; I tell myself my future is lost, all that I hoped for from the Lord. The thought of my homeless poverty is wormwood and gall;
Remembering it over and over leaves my soul downcast within me.
But I will call this to mind, as my reason to have hope:
The favors of the Lord are not exhausted, his mercies are not spent; they are renewed each morning, so great is his faithfulness. My portion is the Lord, says my soul; therefore will I hope in him. Good is the Lord to one who waits for him, to the soul that seeks him; It is good to hope in silence for the saving help of the Lord.

The word of the Lord.


7. A reading from the Book of Proverbs (Prov. 31:10-31)

Who shall find a valiant woman? She is worth more than precious gems. She is a woman of strength and dignity and has no fear of old age. When she speaks, her words are wise and kindness is the rule of everything she says. She watches carefully all that goes on throughout her household and is never lazy. She puts her back into her work and shows how strong her arms can be. She holds out her hands to the poor, she opens her arms to the needy. Her children stand and bless her; she is praised with these words. “There are many fine women in the world, but you are the best of them all.” Charm can be deceptive, and beauty does not last, but a woman who fears and reverences God shall be greatly praised. Praise her for the many fine things she does. Give her a share in what her hands have worked for, and let her works tell her praises at the city gates.

The word of the Lord.


8. A reading from the Book of Ecclesiastes (Eccl. 3:1-11)

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heave: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill; a time to heal; at time to break down, and time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and time to dance; at time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and time to lose; a time to keep, and time to cast away; a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and time to hate; a time for war, and time for peace. What gain have workers from their toil? I have seen the business that God has given to the children of the earth to be busy with. God has made everything beautiful in his time.

The word of the Lord.



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