22 Then the apostles and the elders, with the consent of the whole church, decided to choose men from among their members* and to send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, leaders among the brothers, 23with the following letter: The brothers, both the apostles and the elders, to the believers* of Gentile origin in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, greetings. 24Since we have heard that certain persons who have gone out from us, though with no instructions from us, have said things to disturb you and have unsettled your minds,* 25we have decided unanimously to choose representatives* and send them to you, along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. 27We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth. 28For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to impose on you no further burden than these essentials: 29that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled* and from fornication. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.
30 So they were sent off and went down to Antioch. When they gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. 31When its members* read it, they rejoiced at the exhortation.
12 This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13No one has greater love than this, to lay down ones life for ones friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15I do not call you servants* any longer, because the servant* does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. 16You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. 17I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.
8 My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready;
I will sing and give you praise.
9 Awake, my soul; awake, harp and lyre,
that I may awaken the dawn.
10 I will give you thanks, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praise to you among the nations.
11 For your loving-kindness is as high as the heavens,
and your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
12 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens,
and your glory over all the earth.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
The Common Worship psalter is © The Archbishops Council of the Church of England, 2000.
Common Worship texts are available at http://www.cofe.anglican.org/worship/liturgy/commonworship/
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10 February 2011