FIRST READING: Isaiah 55:1-5
God invites Israel to a great feast at which both food and drink are free. God also promises to make an everlasting covenant with all peoples, with promises that previously had been limited to Israel. As David was a witness to the nations, these nations shall now acknowledge the ways in which God has glorified Israel.
1Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and you that have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. 2Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food. 3Incline your ear, and come to me; listen, so that you may live. I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David. 4See, I made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander for the peoples. 5See, you shall call nations that you do not know, and nations that do not know you shall run to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has glorified you.
PSALM: Psalm 145:8-9, 14-21
You open wide your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. (Ps. 145:16)
8The Lord is gracious and full | of compassion, slow to anger and abounding in | steadfast love. 9Lord, you are | good to all, and your compassion is over | all your works. R 14The Lord upholds all | those who fall and lifts up those who | are bowed down. 15The eyes of all wait upon | you, O Lord, and you give them their food | in due season. 16You open | wide your hand and satisfy the desire of every | living thing. 17You are righteous in | all your ways and loving in | all your works. R 18You are near to all who | call upon you, to all who call up- | on you faithfully. 19You fulfill the desire of | those who fear you; you hear their | cry and save them. 20You watch over all | those who love you, but all the wicked you | shall destroy. 21My mouth shall speak the praise | of the Lord; let all flesh bless God’s holy name forev- | er and ever.
SECOND READING: Romans 9:1-5
This begins a new section in Paul’s letter in which he will deal with the place of Israel in God’s saving plan. He opens by highlighting how Israel’s heritage and legacy include being God’s children, having God’s covenants, being given God’s law, participating in worship of God, and receiving divine promises.
1I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience confirms it by the Holy Spirit—2I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my own people, my kindred according to the flesh. 4They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; 5to them belong the patriarchs, and from them, according to the flesh, comes the Messiah, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen.
GOSPEL: Matthew 14:13-21
After John the Baptist is murdered, Jesus desires a time of solitude. Still, his compassion for others will not allow him to dismiss those who need him, and he is moved to perform one of his greatest miracles.
13Now when Jesus heard [about the beheading of John the Baptist], he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. 15When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16Jesus said to them, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17They replied, “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.” 18And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. 21And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.