Friday in the Third Week of Lent
At the Sixth Hour.
The Lesson of the Prophecy of Isaias.
Thus saith the Lord: Upon the dark mountain lift ye up a banner, exalt the voice, lift up the hand, and let the rulers go into the gates. I have commanded my sanctified ones, and have called my strong ones in my wrath, them that rejoice in my glory. The noise of a multitude in the mountains, as it were of many people, the noise of the sound of kings, of nations gathered together: the Lord of hosts hath given charge to the troops of war. To them that come from a country afar off, from the end of heaven: the Lord and the instruments of his wrath, to destroy the whole land. Howl ye, for the day of the Lord is near: it shall come as a destruction from the Lord. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every heart of man shall melt, and shall be broken. Gripings and pains shall take hold of them, they shall be in pain as a woman in labour. Every one shall be amazed at his neighbour, their countenances shall be as faces burnt. Behold, the day of the Lord shall come, a cruel day, and full of indignation, and of wrath, and fury, to lay the land desolate, and to destroy the sinners thereof out of it. For the stars of heaven, and their brightness shall not display their light: the sun shall be darkened in his rising, and the moon shall not shine with her light. And I will visit the evils of the world, and against the wicked for their iniquity: and I will make the pride of infidels to cease, and will bring down the arrogancy of the mighty. A man shall be more precious than gold, yea a man than the finest of gold. For this I will trouble the heaven: and the earth shall be moved out of her place, for the indignation of the Lord of hosts, and for the day of his fierce wrath.
The Lesson of Genesis.
And the ark rested in the seventh month, the seven and twentieth day of the month, upon the mountains of Armenia. And the waters were going and decreasing until the tenth month: for in the tenth month, the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains appeared. And after that forty days were passed, Noe, opening the window of the ark which he had made, sent forth a raven: which went forth and did not return, till the waters were dried up upon the earth. He sent forth also a dove after him, to see if the waters had now ceased upon the face of the earth. But she, not finding where her foot might rest, returned to him into the ark: for the waters were upon the whole earth: and he put forth his hand, and caught her, and brought her into the ark. And having waited yet seven other days, he again sent forth the dove out of the ark. And she came to him in the evening, carrying a bough of an olive tree, with green leaves, in her mouth. Noe therefore understood that the waters were ceased upon the earth. And he stayed yet other seven days: and he sent forth the dove, which returned not any more unto him. Therefore in the six hundredth and first year, the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were lessened upon the earth, and Noe opening the covering of the ark, looked, and saw that the face of the earth was dried. In the second month, the seven and twentieth day of the month, the earth was dried. And God spoke to Noe, saying: Go out of the ark, thou and thy wife, thy sons, and the wives of thy sons with thee. All living things that are with thee of all flesh, as well in fowls as in beasts, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, bring out with thee, and go ye upon the earth: increase and multiply upon it. So Noe went out, he and his sons: his wife, and the wives of his sons with him. And all living things, and cattle, and creeping things that creep upon the earth, according to their kinds, went out of the ark. And Noe built an altar unto the Lord: and taking of all cattle and fowls that were clean, offered holocausts upon the altar. And the Lord smelled a sweet savour.
The Lesson of Proverbs.
The mouth of the just shall bring forth wisdom: the tongue of the perverse shall perish. The lips of the just consider what is acceptable: and the mouth of the wicked uttereth perverse things. A deceitful balance is an abomination before the Lord: and a just weight is his will. Where pride is, there also shall be reproach: but where humility is, there also is wisdom. The simplicity of the just shall guide them: and the deceitfulness of the wicked shall destroy them. Riches shall not profit in the day of revenge: but justice shall deliver from death. The justice of the upright shall make his way prosperous: and the wicked man shall fall by his own wickedness. The justice of the righteous shall deliver them: and the unjust shall be caught in their own snares. When the wicked man is dead, there shall be no hope any more: and the expectation of the solicitous shall perish. The just is delivered out of distress: and the wicked shall be given up for him. The dissembler with his mouth deceiveth his friend: but the just shall be delivered by knowledge. When it goeth well with the just the city shall rejoice: and when the wicked perish there shall be praise. By the blessing of the just the city shall be exalted: and by the mouth of the wicked it shall be overthrown. He that despiseth his friend, is mean of heart: but the wise man will hold his peace.