O God, by the leading of a star you manifested your only Son to the Peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know you now by faith, to your presence, where we may see your glory face to face; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
First Lesson: Isaiah 60:1-6,9
"Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.
See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you.
Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
Lift up your eyes and look about you: All assemble and come to you; your sons come from afar, and your daughters are carried on the arm.
Then you will look and be radiant, your heart will throb and swell with joy; the wealth on the seas will be brought to you, to you the riches of the nations will come.
Herds of camels will cover your land, young camels of Midian and Ephah. And all from Sheba will come, bearing gold and incense and proclaiming the praise of the LORD.
9Surely the islands look to me; in the lead are the ships of Tarshish, bringing your sons from afar, with their silver and gold, to the honor of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor."
Second Lesson: Ephesians 3:1-12
For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles--
Surely you have heard about the administration of God's grace that was given to me for you, that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets. This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power. Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.
Endow the king with your justice, O God, the royal son with your righteousness.
He will judge your people in righteousness, your afflicted ones with justice.
The mountains will bring prosperity to the people, the hills the fruit of righteousness.
He will defend the afflicted among the people and save the children of the needy; he will crush the oppressor.
He will endure as long as the sun, as long as the moon, through all generations.
He will be like rain falling on a mown field, like showers watering the earth.
In his days the righteous will flourish; prosperity will abound till the moon is no more.
He will rule from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.
The desert tribes will bow before him and his enemies will lick the dust.
The kings of Tarshish and of distant shores will bring tribute to him; the kings of Sheba and Seba will present him gifts.
All kings will bow down to him and all nations will serve him.
For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help.
He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death.
He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight.
Long may he live! May gold from Sheba be given him. May people ever pray for him and bless him all day long.
Let grain abound throughout the land; on the tops of the hills may it sway. Let its fruit flourish like Lebanon; let it thrive like the grass of the field.
May his name endure forever; may it continue as long as the sun.
All nations will be blessed through him, and they will call him blessed.
Praise be to the LORD God, the God of Israel, who alone does marvelous deeds.
Praise be to his glorious name forever; may the whole earth be filled with his glory.
Amen and Amen
Gospel: Matthew 2:1-12
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him."
When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people's chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Christ was to be born. "In Bethlehem in Judea," they replied, "for this is what the prophet has written:
'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.'"
Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him."
After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
Collect & Psalm from the Book of Common Prayer
Other excerpts from the New International Bible