Tuesday 25 December 2018 Alternative 1 of 2 Advent 4 / Christmas Christmas Day or Year C

Reading Notes: Any of the following three sets of Principal Service readings may be used on the evening of Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day. Set III should be used at some service during the celebration.

Collect

Almighty God,

you have given us your only-begotten Son

to take our nature upon him

and as at this time to be born of a pure virgin:

grant that we, who have been born again

and made your children by adoption and grace,

may daily be renewed by your Holy Spirit;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

or

Lord Jesus Christ,

your birth at Bethlehem

draws us to kneel in wonder at heaven touching earth:

accept our heartfelt praise

as we worship you,

our Saviour and our eternal God.

Readings

Set I

Isaiah 9.2-7

2 The people who walked in darkness

have seen a great light;

those who lived in a land of deep darkness—

on them light has shined.

3 You have multiplied the nation,

you have increased its joy;

they rejoice before you

as with joy at the harvest,

as people exult when dividing plunder.

4 For the yoke of their burden,

and the bar across their shoulders,

the rod of their oppressor,

you have broken as on the day of Midian.

5 For all the boots of the tramping warriors

and all the garments rolled in blood

shall be burned as fuel for the fire.

6 For a child has been born for us,

a son given to us;

authority rests upon his shoulders;

and he is named

Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God,

Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

7 His authority shall grow continually,

and there shall be endless peace

for the throne of David and his kingdom.

He will establish and uphold it

with justice and with righteousness

from this time onwards and for evermore.

The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Psalm 96

1  Sing to the Lord a new song; •

sing to the Lord, all the earth.

2  Sing to the Lord and bless his name; •

tell out his salvation from day to day.

3  Declare his glory among the nations •

and his wonders among all peoples.

4  For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised; •

he is more to be feared than all gods.

5  For all the gods of the nations are but idols; •

it is the Lord who made the heavens.

6  Honour and majesty are before him; •

power and splendour are in his sanctuary.

7  Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples; •

ascribe to the Lord honour and strength.

8  Ascribe to the Lord the honour due to his name; •

bring offerings and come into his courts.

9  O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness; •

let the whole earth tremble before him.

10  Tell it out among the nations that the Lord is king. •

He has made the world so firm that it cannot be moved;

he will judge the peoples with equity.

11  Let the heavens rejoice and let the earth be glad; •

let the sea thunder and all that is in it;

12  Let the fields be joyful and all that is in them; •

let all the trees of the wood shout for joy before the Lord.

13  For he comes, he comes to judge the earth; •

with righteousness he will judge the world

and the peoples with his truth.

Titus 2.11-14

11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all, 12training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly, 13while we wait for the blessed hope and the manifestation of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ. 14He it is who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds.

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.

AllGlory to you, O Lord.

Luke 2.1-14 [15-20]

2

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3All went to their own towns to be registered. 4Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

8 In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.’ 13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,

14 ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven,

and on earth peace among those whom he favours!’[

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.’ 16So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. 17When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; 18and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. 19But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. 20The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.]

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

AllPraise to you, O Christ.

Set II

Isaiah 62.6-end

6 Upon your walls, O Jerusalem,

I have posted sentinels;

all day and all night

they shall never be silent.

You who remind the Lord,

take no rest,

7 and give him no rest

until he establishes Jerusalem

and makes it renowned throughout the earth.

8 The Lord has sworn by his right hand

and by his mighty arm:

I will not again give your grain

to be food for your enemies,

and foreigners shall not drink the wine

for which you have laboured;

9 but those who garner it shall eat it

and praise the Lord,

and those who gather it shall drink it

in my holy courts.

10 Go through, go through the gates,

prepare the way for the people;

build up, build up the highway,

clear it of stones,

lift up an ensign over the peoples.

11 The Lord has proclaimed

to the end of the earth:

Say to daughter Zion,

‘See, your salvation comes;

his reward is with him,

and his recompense before him.’

12 They shall be called, ‘The Holy People,

The Redeemed of the Lord’;

and you shall be called, ‘Sought Out,

A City Not Forsaken.’

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Psalm 97

1  The Lord is king: let the earth rejoice; •

let the multitude of the isles be glad.

2  Clouds and darkness are round about him; •

righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.

3  Fire goes before him •

and burns up his enemies on every side.

4  His lightnings lit up the world; •

the earth saw it and trembled.

5  The mountains melted like wax at the presence of the Lord, •

at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.

6  The heavens declared his righteousness, •

and all the peoples have seen his glory.

7  Confounded be all who worship carved images

and delight in mere idols. •

Bow down before him, all you gods.

8  Zion heard and was glad, and the daughters of Judah rejoiced, •

because of your judgements, O Lord.

9  For you, Lord, are most high over all the earth; •

you are exalted far above all gods.

10  The Lord loves those who hate evil; •

he preserves the lives of his faithful

and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.

11  Light has sprung up for the righteous •

and joy for the true of heart.

12  Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous, •

and give thanks to his holy name.

Titus 3.4-7

4But when the goodness and loving-kindness of God our Saviour appeared, 5he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. 6This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, 7so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.

AllGlory to you, O Lord.

Luke 2. [1-7] 8-20

[

2

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3All went to their own towns to be registered. 4Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.]

8 In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.’ 13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,

14 ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven,

and on earth peace among those whom he favours!’

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.’ 16So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. 17When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; 18and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. 19But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. 20The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

AllPraise to you, O Christ.

Set III

Isaiah 52.7-10

7 How beautiful upon the mountains

are the feet of the messenger who announces peace,

who brings good news,

who announces salvation,

who says to Zion, ‘Your God reigns.’

8 Listen! Your sentinels lift up their voices,

together they sing for joy;

for in plain sight they see

the return of the Lord to Zion.

9 Break forth together into singing,

you ruins of Jerusalem;

for the Lord has comforted his people,

he has redeemed Jerusalem.

10 The Lord has bared his holy arm

before the eyes of all the nations;

and all the ends of the earth shall see

the salvation of our God.

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Psalm 98

1  Sing to the Lord a new song, •

for he has done marvellous things.

2  His own right hand and his holy arm •

have won for him the victory.

3  The Lord has made known his salvation; •

his deliverance has he openly shown in the sight of the nations.

4  He has remembered his mercy and faithfulness

towards the house of Israel, •

and all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.

5  Sound praises to the Lord, all the earth; •

break into singing and make music.

6  Make music to the Lord with the lyre, •

with the lyre and the voice of melody.

7  With trumpets and the sound of the horn •

sound praises before the Lord, the King.

8  Let the sea thunder and all that fills it, •

the world and all that dwell upon it.

9  Let the rivers clap their hands •

and let the hills ring out together before the Lord,

for he comes to judge the earth.

10  In righteousness shall he judge the world •

and the peoples with equity.

Hebrews 1.1-4 [5-12]

1

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. 3He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.[

5 For to which of the angels did God ever say,

‘You are my Son;

today I have begotten you’?

Or again,

‘I will be his Father,

and he will be my Son’?

6And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says,

‘Let all God’s angels worship him.’

7Of the angels he says,

‘He makes his angels winds,

and his servants flames of fire.’

8But of the Son he says,

‘Your throne, O God, is for ever and ever,

and the righteous sceptre is the sceptre of your kingdom.

9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;

therefore God, your God, has anointed you

with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.’

10And,

‘In the beginning, Lord, you founded the earth,

and the heavens are the work of your hands;

11 they will perish, but you remain;

they will all wear out like clothing;

12 like a cloak you will roll them up,

and like clothing they will be changed.

But you are the same,

and your years will never end.’]

This is the word of the Lord.

AllThanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.

AllGlory to you, O Lord.

John 1.1-14

1

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

AllPraise to you, O Christ.

Post Communion

God our Father,

whose Word has come among us

in the Holy Child of Bethlehem:

may the light of faith illumine our hearts

and shine in our words and deeds;

through him who is Christ the Lord.

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