Bless the Lord, whose name is to be praised,
Our Father who art in heaven,
who has given us his laws,
to show us the error of our ways,
Blessed is his son, Christ the Messiah,
who redeemed us from having broken them.
Blessed are you, O Holy Spirit,
who assists us in sinning no more,
and sustains us in the way of the Lord,
grant us wisdom and understanding this day.
Old Testament Reading - Response from the gentiles
1,2 Then the Lord spoke to Jonah again: "Go to that great city, Nineveha," he said, "and warn them of their doom, as I told you to before!"
3 So Jonah obeyed, and went to Nineveh. Now Nineveh was a very large city, with extensive suburbs - so large that it would take 3 days to walk around it.b
4,5 But the very first day when Jonah entered the city and began to preach, the people repented. Jonah shouted to the crowds that gathered around him and declared a fast; from the king on down, everyone put on sackcloth - the rough, coarse garments worn at times of mourning.c
6 For when the king of Nineveh heard what Jonah was saying, he stepped down from his throne and laid aside his royal robes and put on sackcloth and sat in ashes. 7 And the king and his nobles sent this message throughout the city: "Let no one, not even the animals, eat anything at all, nor even drink any water. 8 Everyone must wear sackcloth and cry mightily to God, and let everyone turn from his evil ways, from his violence and robbing. 9 Who can tell? Perhaps even yet God will decide to let us live, and will hold back his fierce anger from destroying us."
10 And when God saw that they had put a stop to their evil ways, he abandoned his plan to destroy them, and didn't carry it through.. . . Jonah 3:1-10
- Nineveh was the capital city of Assyria - a violent and warlike people.
- The Hebrew text makes no distinction between the city proper - the walls of which were only about eight miles in circumference, accommodating a population of about 175,000 persons - and the administrative district of Nineveh which was about thirty to sixty miles across.
They who wait upon God shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings as an eagle.
Almighty and merciful God,
we have sinned against you,
in thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with all our heart.
We have not loved others
as our Saviour Christ loves us.
We are truly sorry.
In your mercy forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may delight in your will
and walk in your ways,
through Jesus Christ our Saviour.