In the first year of King Belshazzar of Babylon, Daniel had a dream and visions of his head as he lay in bed. Then he wrote down the dream: I, Daniel, saw in my vision by night the four winds of heaven stirring up the great sea, and four great beasts came up out of the sea, different from one another.
As for me, Daniel, my spirit was troubled within me, and the visions of my head terrified me. I approached one of the attendants to ask him the truth concerning all this. So he said that he would disclose to me the interpretation of the matter: “As for these four great beasts, four kings shall arise out of the earth. But the holy ones of the Most High shall receive the kingdom and possess the kingdom for ever—for ever and ever.”
Sing to the LORD a new song; *
sing his praise in the congregation of the faithful.
2 Let Israel rejoice in his Maker; *
let the children of Zion be joyful in their King.
3 Let them praise his Name in the dance; *
let them sing praise to him with timbrel and harp.
4 For the LORD takes pleasure in his people *
and adorns the poor with victory.
5 Let the faithful rejoice in triumph; *
let them be joyful on their beds.
6 Let the praises of God be in their throat *
and a two-edged sword in their hand;
7 To wreak vengeance on the nations *
and punishment on the peoples;
8 To bind their kings in chains *
and their nobles with links of iron;
9 To inflict on them the judgment decreed; *
this is glory for all his faithful people.
In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; this is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption as God’s own people, to the praise of his glory.
I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
Jesus looked up at his disciples and said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
“Blessed are you who are hungry now,
for you will be filled.
“Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.
“Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets.”
“But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
“Woe to you who are full now,
for you will be hungry.
“Woe to you who are laughing now,
for you will mourn and weep.
“Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.
“But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you.
FOR ALL THE SAINTS WHO FROM THEIR LABORS REST
For all the saints, who from their labors rest,
Who thee by faith before the world confessed,
Thy Name, O Jesus, be forever blessed.
Thou wast their rock, their fortress, and their might;
Thou, Lord, their Captain in the well-fought fight;
Thou, in the darkness drear, the one true Light.
O may thy soldiers, faithful, true, and bold,
Fight as the saints who nobly fought of old,
And win with them, the victor’s crown of gold.
O blest communion, fellowship divine!
We feebly struggle, they in glory shine;
Yet all are one in thee, for all are thine.
But lo! there breaks a yet more glorious day;
The saints triumphant rise in bright array;
The King of glory passes on his way.
From earth’s wide bounds, from ocean’s farthest coast,
Through gates of pearl streams in the countless host,
Singing to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
I SING A SONG OF THE SAINTS OF GOD
I sing a song of the saints of God,
Patient and brave and true,
Who toiled and fought and lived and died
For the Lord they loved and knew.
And one was a doctor and one was a queen,
And one was a shepherdess on the green;
They were all of them saints of God and I mean,
God helping, to be one too.
They loved their Lord so dear, so dear,
And his love made them strong;
And they followed the right for Jesus’ sake,
The whole of their good lives long.
And one was a soldier, and one was a priest,
And one was slain by a fierce wild beast;
And there’s not any reason, no not the least,
Why I shouldn’t be one too.
They lived not only in ages past,
There are hundreds of thousands still,
And the world is bright with the joyous saints
Who love to do Jesus’ will.
You can meet them in school, or in lanes, or at sea,
In church, or in trains, or in shops, or at tea,
For the saints of God are just folk like me,
And I mean to be one too.
WHO ARE THESE LIKE STARS APPEARING
Who are these like stars appearing,
These, before God’s throne who stand?
Each a golden crown is wearing;
Who are all this glorious band?
Alleluia! Hark, they sing,
Praising loud their heavenly King.
Who are these of dazzling brightness,
These in God’s own truth arrayed,
Clad in robes of purest whiteness,
Robes whose luster ne’er shall fade,
Ne’er be touched by time’s rude hand?
Whence comes all this glorious band?
These are they who have contended
For their Savior’s honor long,
Wrestling on till life was ended,
Following not the sinful throng;
These who well the fight sustained,
Triumph by the Lamb have gained.
Prayer for Spiritual Communion
In union, O Lord, with your faithful people at every altar of your Church, where the Holy Eucharist is now being celebrated, I desire to offer to you praise and thanksgiving. I remember your death, Lord Christ; I proclaim your resurrection; I await your coming in glory. Since I cannot receive you today in the Sacrament of your Body and Blood, I beseech you to come spiritually into my heart. Cleanse and strengthen me with your grace, Lord Jesus, and let me never be separated from you. May I live in you, and you in me, in this life and in the life to come. Amen.