I am an emeritus professor from Cornell University and was a Commissioned Lay Preacher in the Presbyterian Church (USA). For many years I have followed the Daily Lectionary as printed in the Mission Yearbook of my church. For each day of a two-year cycle, the lectionary lists four psalms and three other scriptural passages--usually one from the Old Testament and two from the New Testament. My practice is to copy down a verse or two from one of the psalms and from each of the other three passages. After I have written out all four selections, I reflect upon them, rearrange their order, and incorporate them into a meditation. Sometimes I retain much of the original wording; sometimes all that remains of a selection is an idea that was stimulated when I read the original words. All selections are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible. For the Daily Lectionary, see the link below.

If the Tree Is Known by Its Fruit--May 24, 2016

[From May 27, 2008 archive]

O God, you desire everyone to be saved
and to come to the knowledge of the truth:

Save us from pride in our own prosperity
and the belief that we control our destiny,

for you tear down the house of the proud
and maintain the boundaries of the widow.

How can we be proud of the fruit we bear?
Without you neither fruit nor tree is good.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 123; 146; 30; 86
Prov. 15:16-33
1 Tim. 1:18-2:15
Matt. 12:33-42
Selected Verses
Ps. 30:6
As for me, I said in my prosperity,
          “I shall never be moved.” 

Prov. 15:25
The LORD tears down the house of the proud, but maintains the widow’s boundaries.

1 Tim. 2:3-4
This is right and is acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 

Matt. 12:33
 "Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit. …"  [Jesus to the Pharisees]

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