Proper 12
week of the Sunday closest to July 27

O God, the protector of all who trust in you, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy: Increase and multiply upon us your mercy; that, with you as our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we lose not the things eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

First Lesson: 1 Kings 3:5-12
At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you."

Solomon answered, "You have shown great kindness to your servant, my father David, because he was faithful to you and righteous and upright in heart. You have continued this great kindness to him and have given him a son to sit on his throne this very day.

"Now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?"

The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, "Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.

Second Lesson: Romans 8:26-34
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all--how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died--more than that, who was raised to life--is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.

Psalm: 119:121-136

  1. I have done what is just and right; *
          do not deliver me to my oppressors.
  2. Be surety for your servant's good; *
          let not the proud oppress me.
  3. My eyes have failed from watching for your salvation *
          and for your righteous promise.
  4. Deal with your servant according to your loving-kindness *
          and teach me your statutes.
  5. I am your servant; grant me understanding, *
          that I may know your decrees.
  6. It is time for you to act, O LORD, *
          for they have broken your law.
  7. Truly, I love your commandments *
          more than gold and precious stones.
  8. I hold all your commandments to be right for me; *
          all paths of falsehood I abhor.
  9. Your decrees are wonderful; *
          therefore I obey them with all my heart.
  10. When your word goes forth it gives light; *
          it gives understanding to the simple.
  11. I open my mouth and pant; *
          I long for your commandments.
  12. Turn to me in mercy, *
          as you always do to those who love your Name.
  13. Steady my footsteps in your word; *
          let no iniquity have dominion over me.
  14. Rescue me from those who oppress me, *
          and I will keep your commandments.
  15. Let your countenance shine upon your servant *
          and teach me your statutes.
  16. My eyes shed streams of tears, *
          because people do not keep your law.

Gospel: Matthew 13:31-33, 44-49a
He told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches."

He told them still another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough."

44"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. 46When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.

"Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away. This is how it will be at the end of the age."

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

Sts. Vidicon & Isidore