Readings for September 12, 2021

ISAIAH 50:4-9a The Lord’s Obedient Servant
The Sovereign Lord has given me his words of wisdom, so that I know how to comfort the weary.
Morning by morning he wakens me and opens my understanding to his will.
The Sovereign Lord has spoken to me, and I have listened. I have not rebelled or turned away.
I offered my back to those who beat me and my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard.
I did not hide my face from mockery and spitting.
Because the Sovereign Lord helps me, I will not be disgraced. Therefore, I have set my face like
a stone, determined to do his will. And I know that I will not be put to shame.
He who gives me justice is near. Who will dare to bring charges against me now?
Where are my accusers? Let them appear!
See, the Sovereign Lord is on my side! Who will declare me guilty?

Word of God, Word of Life.....Thanks be to God

PSALM 116 

I love the Lord because he hears my voice
    and my prayer for mercy.
Because he bends down to listen,
    I will pray as long as I have breath!
Death wrapped its ropes around me;
    the terrors of the grave[a] overtook me.
    I saw only trouble and sorrow.
Then I called on the name of the Lord:
    “Please, Lord, save me!”
How kind the Lord is! How good he is!
    So merciful, this God of ours!
The Lord protects those of childlike faith;
    I was facing death, and he saved me.
Let my soul be at rest again,
    for the Lord has been good to me.
He has saved me from death,
    my eyes from tears,
    my feet from stumbling.
And so I walk in the Lord’s presence
    as I live here on earth!
10 I believed in you, so I said,
    “I am deeply troubled, Lord.”
11 In my anxiety I cried out to you,
    “These people are all liars!”
12 What can I offer the Lord
    for all he has done for me?
13 I will lift up the cup of salvation
    and praise the Lord’s name for saving me.
14 I will keep my promises to the Lord
    in the presence of all his people.

15 The Lord cares deeply
    when his loved ones die.
16 O Lord, I am your servant;
    yes, I am your servant, born into your household;
    you have freed me from my chains.
17 I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving
    and call on the name of the Lord.
18 I will fulfill my vows to the Lord
    in the presence of all his people—
19 in the house of the Lord
    in the heart of Jerusalem.

Praise the Lord!

JAMES 3:1-12 Controlling the Tongue
Dear brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers in the church, for we who
teach will be judged more strictly. Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our
tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way. We can make
a large horse go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. And a small rudder makes
a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. In the same
way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches.
But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is
a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole
life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself. People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and
fish, but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison.
Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made
in the image of God. And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely,
my brothers and sisters, this is not right! Does a spring of water bubble out with both fresh water
and bitter water? Does a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine produce figs? No, and you can’t
draw fresh water from a salty spring.

Word of God, Word of Life.....Thanks be to God

GOSPEL Peter’s Declaration about Jesus/Jesus Predicts His Death

The Holy Gospel according to Mark, the 8th chapter (vs. 27-38)
Glory to you, O God
Jesus and his disciples left Galilee and went up to the villages near Caesarea Philippi. As they
were walking along, he asked them, “Who do people say I am?” “Well,” they replied, “some say
John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say you are one of the other prophets.” Then he
asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Peter replied, “You are the Messiah.” But Jesus warned
them not to tell anyone about him.
Then Jesus began to tell them that the Son of Man must suffer many terrible things and be rejected
by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but three
days later he would rise from the dead. As he talked about this openly with his disciples, Peter took
him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things.
Jesus turned around and looked at his disciples, then reprimanded Peter. “Get away from me,
Satan!” he said. “You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.” Then,
calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give
up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose
it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And
what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more
than your soul? If anyone is ashamed of me and my message in these adulterous and sinful days,
the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns in the glory of his Father with the
holy angels.”

The Gospel of our Lord.......Praise to you, O Christ.