Second Sunday in Lent, Year A, March 8, 2020

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Full lections can be read here.


Based on the Readings as Set, and with Alternative Gospel

First Reading (Genesis 12:1-4a)

After the Lord had frustrated the building of the Tower of Babel, he speaks to Abram in Haran. He tells him to leave his country and go to another where he would become a great nation that will be a blessing to all the peoples of the earth.

Psalm (121)

The Psalmist draws our attention to the fact that it is only the Lord who is our genuine help. As both creator and ever-present one, he protects and keeps us from all evil and danger.

Second Reading (Romans 4:1-5; 13-17)

Paul sees grace at work in the great promises that God made to Abraham, the father of the Jewish nation. Righteousness and justification come by faith alone, not by works of the law. As such, they are guaranteed on the basis of God’s grace, not our performance.

Gospel (John 3:1-17)

Jesus tells Nicodemus that we need to be born again in order to enter God’s kingdom. This is a mysterious work of the Spirit in those who simply put their trust in the word and work of Jesus, the one sent from heaven for the salvation of the whole world.


Alternative Gospel: Matthew 17:1-9

After teaching his disciples about his impending death, Jesus goes up onto a mountain where his appearance is transformed in brilliant light. When he is joined by Moses and Elijah, a heavenly voice clarifies that Jesus, as God’s son, deserves our full attention.


  • The critical role of faith in our relationship with God
  • The wonderful nature of grace in contrast to the futility of relying upon our own efforts to reach up to God
  • The centrality of Christ to the gospel
  • The continuity of the story of grace
  • The message of the gospel is intended for the whole of humanity



Almighty God,
whose Son was revealed in majesty
before he suffered death upon the cross,
give us faith to perceive his glory,
that being strengthened by his grace
we may be changed into his likeness, from glory to glory; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. AMEN.