September 22, 2015

A reading from the Book of Ezra 6:7-8, 12b, 14-20

6:7 and let this temple of God be released to the governor of the Jews and to their elders, so that they may build that house of God in its place.
6:8 Moreover, it has been instructed by me as to what ought to be done by those priests of the Jews, so that the house of God may be built, specifically, that from the king’s treasury, that is, from the tribute which is taken from the region beyond the river, the expenses shall be scrupulously given to those men, so that the work may not be impeded.
6:9 But if it may be necessary, let also calves, and lambs, and young goats for holocausts to the God of heaven, with grain, salt, wine, and oil, according to the rite of the priests who are in Jerusalem, be given to them for each day, so that there may be no complaint in anything.
6:10 And let them offer oblations to the God of heaven, and let them pray for the life of the king and for the lives of his sons.
6:11 Therefore, the decree has been set forth by me, so that, if there be any man who will change this order, a beam shall be taken from his own house, and it shall be set up, and he shall be nailed to it. Then his house shall be confiscated.
6:12 So then, may the God who has caused his name to live there destroy any kingdoms or people who would extend their hand to fight against or to destroy that house of God, which is in Jerusalem. I, Darius, have established the decree, which I wish to be fulfilled scrupulously.”
6:13 Therefore, Tattenai, the governor of the region beyond the river, and Shetharbozenai, and his counselors, in accord with what king Darius had instructed, diligently executed the same.
6:14 Then the elders of the Jews were building and prospering, in accord with the prophecy of Haggai, the prophet, and Zechariah, the son of Iddo. And they built and constructed by the order of the God of Israel, and by the order of Cyrus and Darius, as well as Artaxerxes, the kings of the Persians.
6:15 And they completed this house of God on the third day of the month of Adar, which was in the sixth year of the reign of king Darius.
6:16 Then the sons of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the remainder of the sons of the transmigration celebrated the dedication of the house of God with gladness.
6:17 And they offered, for the dedication of the house of God, one hundred calves, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs, and, as a sin offering for all of Israel, twelve he-goats from among the goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel.
6:18 And they appointed the priests into their divisions, and the Levites into their turns, over the works of God in Jerusalem, just as it was written in the book of Moses.
6:19 Then the sons of Israel of the transmigration kept the Passover, on the fourteenth day of the first month.
6:20 For the priests and Levites had been purified as one. All were cleansed in order to immolate the Passover for all the sons of the transmigration, and for their brothers, the priests, and for themselves.

Gospel according to Luke 8:19-21

8:19 Then his mother and brothers came to him; but they were not able to go to him because of the crowd.
8:20 And it was reported to him, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”
8:21 And in response, he said to them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”