Psalm 84 (adjusted)
How dear to me is your dwelling, O God of hosts! *
My soul has a desire and longing for the courts of God;
my heart and my flesh rejoice in the living God.
The sparrow has found her a house
and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young; *
by the side of your altars, O God of hosts,
my Queen and my God.
Happy are they who dwell in your house! *
they will always be praising you.
Happy are the people whose strength is in you! *
whose hearts are set on the pilgrims’ way.
Those who go through the desolate valley will find it a place of springs, *
for the early rains have covered it with pools of water.
They will climb from height to height, *
and the God of gods will reveal herself in Zion.
God of hosts, hear my prayer; *
hearken, O God of Leah and Rachel, Bilhah and Zilpah.
Behold our defender, O God; *
and look upon the face of your Anointed.
For one day in your courts is better than a thousand in my own room, *
and to stand at the threshold of the house of my God
than to dwell in the tents of the wicked.
For God is both sun and shield; *
she will give grace and glory;
No good thing will God withhold *
from those who walk with integrity.
O God of hosts, *
happy are they who put their trust in you!
Isaiah 62:1-5,10-12 (adjusted)
For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent,
and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,
until her vindication shines out like the dawn,
and her salvation like a burning torch.
The nations shall see your vindication,
and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name
that the mouth of God will give.
You shall be a crown of beauty
and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
You shall no more be termed Forsaken,
and your land shall no more be termed Desolate;
but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her,
and your land Married;
for God delights in you,
and your land shall be married.
For as a young man marries a young woman,
so shall your builder marry you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
so shall your God rejoice over you.
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.
God has proclaimed
to the end of the earth:
Say to daughter Zion,
‘See, your salvation comes;
her reward is with her,
and her recompense before her.’
They shall be called, ‘The Holy People,
The Redeemed of God’;
and you shall be called, ‘Sought Out,
A City Not Forsaken.’
Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.’ All this took place to fulfil what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
‘Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel’,
which means, ‘God is with us.’ When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.