Prayer for the Day – Wednesday 16 December

O Lord Jesus Christ,
who at your first coming sent your messenger
to prepare your way before you:
grant that the ministers and stewards of your mysteries
may likewise so prepare and make ready your way
by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just,
that at your second coming to judge the world
we may be found an acceptable people in your sight;
for you are alive and reign with the Father
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Isaiah 51.1–8
Listen to me, you that pursue righteousness,
   you that seek the Lord.
Look to the rock from which you were hewn,
   and to the quarry from which you were dug.
Look to Abraham your father
   and to Sarah who bore you;
for he was but one when I called him,
   but I blessed him and made him many.
For the Lord will comfort Zion;
   he will comfort all her waste places,
and will make her wilderness like Eden,
   her desert like the garden of the Lord;
joy and gladness will be found in her,
   thanksgiving and the voice of song.
Listen to me, my people,
   and give heed to me, my nation;
for a teaching will go out from me,
   and my justice for a light to the peoples.
I will bring near my deliverance swiftly,
   my salvation has gone out
   and my arms will rule the peoples;
the coastlands wait for me,
   and for my arm they hope.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens,
   and look at the earth beneath;
for the heavens will vanish like smoke,
   the earth will wear out like a garment,
   and those who live on it will die like gnats;
but my salvation will be for ever,
   and my deliverance will never be ended.
Listen to me, you who know righteousness,
   you people who have my teaching in your hearts;
do not fear the reproach of others,
   and do not be dismayed when they revile you.
For the moth will eat them up like a garment,
   and the worm will eat them like wool;
but my deliverance will be for ever,
   and my salvation to all generations.

Psalm 96
    Sing to the Lord a new song;
   sing to the Lord, all the earth.
    Sing to the Lord and bless his name;
   tell out his salvation from day to day.
    Declare his glory among the nations
   and his wonders among all peoples.
    For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised;
   he is more to be feared than all gods.
    For all the gods of the nations are but idols;
   it is the Lord who made the heavens.
    Honour and majesty are before him;
   power and splendour are in his sanctuary.
    Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples;
   ascribe to the Lord honour and strength.
    Ascribe to the Lord the honour due to his name;
   bring offerings and come into his courts.
    O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness;
   let the whole earth tremble before him.
      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.
      Let the heavens rejoice and let the earth be glad;
   let the sea thunder and all that is in it;
      Let the fields be joyful and all that is in them;
   let all the trees of the wood shout for joy before the Lord.
      For he comes, he comes to judge the earth;
   with righteousness he will judge the world
      and the peoples with his truth.