Fifth Sunday after Epiphany

Set us free, O God, from the bondage of our sins, and give us, we beseech thee, the liberty of that abundant life which thou hast manifested to us in thy Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

First Lesson: Habakkuk 3:1-6, 17-19
A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet. On shigionoth.

LORD, I have heard of your fame;
I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD.
Renew them in our day,
in our time make them known;
in wrath remember mercy.

God came from Teman,
the Holy One from Mount Paran.

His glory covered the heavens
and his praise filled the earth.
His splendor was like the sunrise;
rays flashed from his hand,
where his power was hidden.
Plague went before him;
pestilence followed his steps.
He stood, and shook the earth;
he looked, and made the nations tremble.
The ancient mountains crumbled
and the age-old hills collapsed.
His ways are eternal.

17 Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.

The Sovereign LORD is my strength;
he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
he enables me to go on the heights.

Second Lesson: 1 Corinth 2:1-11
When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, 5so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power.

We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written:
"No eye has seen,
no ear has heard,
no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love him"--

but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.

Psalm: 27

  1. The LORD is my light and my salvation;
    whom then shall I fear? *
    the LORD is the strength of my life;
    of whom then shall I be afraid?
  2. When evildoers came upon me to eat up my flesh, *
    it was they, my foes and my adversaries, who
    stumbled and fell.
  3. Though an army should encamp against me, *
    yet my heart shall not be afraid;
  4. And though war should rise up against me, *
    yet will I put my trust in him.
  5. One thing have I asked of the LORD;
    one thing I seek; *
    that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days
    of my life;
  6. To behold the fair beauty of the LORD *
    and to seek him in his temple.
  7. For in the day of trouble he shall keep me safe
    in his shelter; *
    he shall hide me in the secrecy of his dwelling
    and set me high upon a rock.
  8. Even now he lifts up my head *
    above my enemies round about me.
  9. Therefore I will offer in his dwelling an oblation
    with sounds of great gladness; *
    I will sing and make music to the LORD.
  10. Hearken to my voice, O LORD, when I call; *
    have mercy on me and answer me.
  11. You speak in my heart and say, "Seek my face." *
    Your face, LORD, will I seek.
  12. Hide not your face from me, *
    nor turn away your servant in displeasure.
  13. You have been my helper;
    cast me not away; *
    do not forsake me, O God of my salvation.
  14. Though my father and my mother forsake me, *
    the LORD will sustain me.
  15. Show me your way, O LORD; *
    lead me on a level path, because of my enemies.
  16. Deliver me not into the hand of my adversaries, *
    for false witnesses have risen up against me,
    and also those who speak malice.
  17. What if I had not believed
    that I should see the goodness of the LORD *
    in the land of the living!
  18. O tarry and await the LORD'S pleasure;
    be strong, and he shall comfort your heart; *
    wait patiently for the LORD.

Gospel: Matthew 5:13-20
"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.

"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

Collect & Psalm from the Book of Common Prayer
Other excerpts from the New International Bible

Sts. Vidicon & Isidore