(Week of Prayer for Christian Unity)
FIRST READING: 1 Samuel 16: 1 - 13
1 The LORD said to Samuel, "How long will you grieve over Saul, seeing I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons."
2 And Samuel said, "How can I go? If Saul hears it, he will kill me." And the LORD said, "Take a heifer with you, and say, `I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.'
3 And invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me him whom I name to you."
4 Samuel did what the LORD commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, "Do you come peaceably?"
5 And he said, "Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the LORD; consecrate yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice." And he consecrated Jesse and his sons, and invited them to the sacrifice.
6 When they came, he looked on Eli'ab and thought, "Surely the LORD'S anointed is before him."
7 But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the LORD sees not as man sees; man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart."
8 Then Jesse called Abin'adab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one."
9 Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, "Neither has the LORD chosen this one."
10 And Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, "The LORD has not chosen these."
11 And Samuel said to Jesse, "Are all your sons here?" And he said, "There remains yet the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep." And Samuel said to Jesse, "Send and fetch him; for we will not sit down till he comes here."
12 And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. And the LORD said, "Arise, anoint him; for this is he."
13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.
20 I have found David, my servant; with my holy oil I have anointed him;
21 so that my hand shall ever abide with him, my arm also shall strengthen him.
22 The enemy shall not outwit him, the wicked shall not humble him.
27 And I will make him the first-born, the highest of the kings of the earth.
28 My steadfast love I will keep for him for ever, and my covenant will stand firm for him.
23 As he was passing through a field of grain on the sabbath, his disciples began to make a path while picking the heads of grain.
24 At this the Pharisees said to him, "Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?"
25 He said to them, "Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions were hungry?
26 How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest and ate the bread of offering that only the priests could lawfully eat, and shared it with his companions?"
27 Then he said to them, "The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath.
28 That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath."