Prayer Before Reading Holy Scripture
O Master Who loves mankind, illuminate our hearts with the pure light of Your divine knowledge and open the eyes of our mind to understand the teachings of Your Gospel. Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments, that we may overcome all carnal desires, entering upon a spiritual life and understanding and acting in all things according to Your holy will. For You are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies, O Christ God, and to You we give glory together with Your eternal Father and Your all-holy, gracious and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.
Old Testament Reading: Isaiah 49:6-10
Indeed He says, ‘It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles, that You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.’ “
Thus says the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, their Holy One, to Him whom man despises, to Him whom the nation abhors, to the Servant of rulers: “Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel; and He has chosen You.”
Thus says the LORD: “In an acceptable time I have heard You, and in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You as a covenant to the people, to restore the earth, to cause them to inherit the desolate heritages;
that You may say to the prisoners, ‘Go forth,’ to those who are in darkness, ‘Show yourselves.’ “They shall feed along the roads, and their pastures shall be on all desolate heights.
They shall neither hunger nor thirst, neither heat nor sun shall strike them; for He who has mercy on them will lead them, even by the springs of water He will guide them.
Old Testament Reading: Genesis 31:3-16
Then the LORD said to Jacob, “Return to the land of your fathers and to your family, and I will be with you.”
So Jacob sent and called Rachel and Leah to the field, to his flock,
and said to them, “I see your father’s countenance, that it is not favorable toward me as before; but the God of my father has been with me.
“And you know that with all my might I have served your father.
“Yet your father has deceived me and changed my wages ten times, but God did not allow him to hurt me.
“If he said thus: ‘The speckled shall be your wages,’ then all the flocks bore speckled. And if he said thus: ‘The streaked shall be your wages,’ then all the flocks bore streaked.
“So God has taken away the livestock of your father and given them to me.
“And it happened, at the time when the flocks conceived, that I lifted my eyes and saw in a dream, and behold, the rams which leaped upon the flocks were streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted.
“Then the Angel of God spoke to me in a dream, saying, ‘ Jacob.’ And I said, ‘Here I am.’
“And He said, ‘Lift your eyes now and see, all the rams which leap on the flocks are streaked, speckled, and gray-spotted; for I have seen all that Laban is doing to you.
‘I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed the pillar and where you made a vow to Me. Now arise, get out of this land, and return to the land of your family.’ “
Then Rachel and Leah answered and said to him, “Is there still any portion or inheritance for us in our father’s house?
“Are we not considered strangers by him? For he has sold us, and also completely consumed our money.
“For all these riches which God has taken from our father are really ours and our children’s; now then, whatever God has said to you, do it.”
Old Testament Reading: Proverbs 21:3-21
To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.
A haughty look, a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked are sin.
The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, but those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.
Getting treasures by a lying tongue is the fleeting fantasy of those who seek death.
The violence of the wicked will destroy them, because they refuse to do justice.
The way of a guilty man is perverse; but as for the pure, his work is right.
It is better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, than in a house shared with a contentious woman.
The soul of the wicked desires evil; his neighbor finds no favor in his eyes.
When the scoffer is punished, the simple is made wise; but when the wise is instructed, he receives knowledge.
The righteous God wisely considers the house of the wicked, overthrowing the wicked for their wickedness.
Whoever shuts his ears to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be heard.
A gift in secret pacifies anger, and a bribe behind the back, strong wrath.
It is a joy for the just to do justice, but destruction will come to the workers of iniquity.
A man who wanders from the way of understanding will rest in the congregation of the dead.
He who loves pleasure will be a poor man; he who loves wine and oil will not be rich.
The wicked shall be a ransom for the righteous, and the unfaithful for the upright.
It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and angry woman.
There is desirable treasure, and oil in the dwelling of the wise, but a foolish man squanders it.
He who follows righteousness and mercy finds life, righteousness and honor.
Saints and Feasts
Eutychius, Patriarch of Constantinople; 120 Martyrs of Persia; Gregory of Sinai; Platonis the Nun of Nisibis