THIS WEEK
THIS WEEK

Shabbat Shuvah

Shabbat of Return — שבת שובה


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HAFTARAH: Hosea 14:2-10; Micah 7:18-20; Joel 2:15-27

Hosea 14:2–9

  Take with you words
    and return to the LORD;
  say to him,
    “Take away all iniquity;
  accept what is good,
    and we will pay with bulls
    the vows of our lips.
  Assyria shall not save us;
    we will not ride on horses;
  and we will say no more, ‘Our God,’
    to the work of our hands.
  In you the orphan finds mercy.”
  I will heal their apostasy;
    I will love them freely,
    for my anger has turned from them.
  I will be like the dew to Israel;
    he shall blossom like the lily;
    he shall take root like the trees of Lebanon;
  his shoots shall spread out;
    his beauty shall be like the olive,
    and his fragrance like Lebanon.
  They shall return and dwell beneath my shadow;
    they shall flourish like the grain;
  they shall blossom like the vine;
    their fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
  O Ephraim, what have I to do with idols?
    It is I who answer and look after you.
  I am like an evergreen cypress;
    from me comes your fruit.
  Whoever is wise, let him understand these things;
    whoever is discerning, let him know them;
  for the ways of the LORD are right,
    and the upright walk in them,
    but transgressors stumble in them.

(ESV)

Micah 7:18–20

God's Steadfast Love and Compassion

18   Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity
    and passing over transgression
    for the remnant of his inheritance?
  He does not retain his anger forever,
    because he delights in steadfast love.
19   He will again have compassion on us;
    he will tread our iniquities underfoot.
  You will cast all our sins
    into the depths of the sea.
20   You will show faithfulness to Jacob
    and steadfast love to Abraham,
  as you have sworn to our fathers
    from the days of old.

(ESV)

Joel 2:15–27

15   Blow the trumpet in Zion;
    consecrate a fast;
  call a solemn assembly;
16     gather the people.
  Consecrate the congregation;
    assemble the elders;
  gather the children,
    even nursing infants.
  Let the bridegroom leave his room,
    and the bride her chamber.
17   Between the vestibule and the altar
    let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep
  and say, “Spare your people, O LORD,
    and make not your heritage a reproach,
    a byword among the nations.
  Why should they say among the peoples,
    ‘Where is their God?’”

The Lord Had Pity

18   Then the LORD became jealous for his land
    and had pity on his people.
19   The LORD answered and said to his people,
  “Behold, I am sending to you
    grain, wine, and oil,
    and you will be satisfied;
  and I will no more make you
    a reproach among the nations.
20   “I will remove the northerner far from you,
    and drive him into a parched and desolate land,
  his vanguard into the eastern sea,
    and his rear guard into the western sea;
  the stench and foul smell of him will rise,
    for he has done great things.
21   “Fear not, O land;
    be glad and rejoice,
    for the LORD has done great things!
22   Fear not, you beasts of the field,
    for the pastures of the wilderness are green;
  the tree bears its fruit;
    the fig tree and vine give their full yield.
23   “Be glad, O children of Zion,
    and rejoice in the LORD your God,
  for he has given the early rain for your vindication;
    he has poured down for you abundant rain,
    the early and the latter rain, as before.
24   “The threshing floors shall be full of grain;
    the vats shall overflow with wine and oil.
25   I will restore to you the years
    that the swarming locust has eaten,
  the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter,
    my great army, which I sent among you.
26   “You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied,
    and praise the name of the LORD your God,
    who has dealt wondrously with you.
  And my people shall never again be put to shame.
27   You shall know that I am in the midst of Israel,
    and that I am the LORD your God and there is none else.
  And my people shall never again be put to shame.

(ESV)

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GOSPEL: Matthew 18:21-35

Matthew 18:21–35

The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant

21 Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.

23 “Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. 24 When he began to settle, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. 25 And since he could not pay, his master ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26 So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But when that same servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him, he began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 So his fellow servant fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. 31 When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all that had taken place. 32 Then his master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 And should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. 35 So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”

(ESV)

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Note: The regular readings above are often interrupted with special readings on Jewish holidays, special Sabbaths, and Rosh Chodesh. Refer to the annual Torah Portion schedule for these special portions.


Portion Summary

Shabbat Shuvah or Shabbat T'shuvah ("Sabbath [of] Return" שבת שובה or "Sabbath [of] Repentance" שבת תשובה) refers to the Shabbat that occurs during the Ten Days of Repentance, but is between (i.e. not including): the two consecutive Days of Rosh Hashanah; and the Day of Yom Kippur. The name Shabbat Shuvah comes from the first word of the Haftarah that is read on that day, Hosea 14:2-10, and literally means "Return!" It is alternately known as Shabbat T'shuvah owing to its being one of the Aseret Y'mei T'shuvah (Ten Day of Repentance).





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