Monday in the Second Week of Lent
At the Sixth Hour.
The Lesson of the Prophecy of Isaias.
Thus saith the Lord: In that day the bud of the Lord shall be in magnificence and glory, and the fruit of the earth shall be high, and a great joy to them that shall have escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that every one that shall be left in Sion, and that shall remain in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, every one that is written in life in Jerusalem. If the Lord shall wash away the filth of the daughters of Sion, and shall wash away the blood of Jerusalem out of the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And the Lord will create upon every place of mount Sion, and where he is called upon, a cloud by day, and a smoke and the brightness of a flaming fire in the night: for over all the glory shall be a protection. And there shall be a tabernacle for a shade in the daytime from the heat, and for a security and covert from the whirlwind, and from rain. I will sing to my beloved the canticle of my cousin concerning his vineyard. My beloved had a vineyard on a hill in a fruitful place. And he fenced it in, and picked the stones out of it, and planted it with the choicest vines, and built a tower in the midst thereof, and set up a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it broutht forth wild grapes. And now, O ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and ye men of Juda, judge between me and my vineyard. What is there that I ought to do more to my vineyard, that I have not done to it? And now I will shew you what I will do to my vineyard. I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be wasted: I will break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down. And I will make it desolate: it shall not be pruned, and it shall not be digged: but briers and thorns shall come up: and I will command the clouds to rain no rain upon it. For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel: and the man of Juda, his pleasant plant.
The Lesson of Genesis.
And the Lord God made for Adam and his wife, garments of skins, and clothed them. And he said: Behold Adam is become as one of us, knowing good and evil: now, therefore, lest perhaps he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever. And the Lord God sent him out of the paradise of pleasure, to till the earth from which he was taken. And he cast out Adam; and placed before the paradise of pleasure Cherubims, and a flaming sword, turning every way, to keep the way of the tree of life. And Adam knew Eve his wife: who conceived and brought forth Cain, saying: I have gotten a man through God. And again she brought forth his brother Abel. And Abel was a shepherd, and Cain a husbandman. And it came to pass after many days, that Cain offered, of the fruits of the earth, gifts to the Lord. Abel also offered of the firstlings of his flock, and of their fat: and the Lord had respect to Abel, and to his offerings. But to Cain and his offerings he had no respect: and Cain was exceedingly angry, and his countenance fell. And the Lord said to him: Why art thou angry? And why is thy countenance fallen? If thou do well, shalt thou not receive? But if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at the door? But the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it.
The Lesson of Proverbs.
The Lord shall scorn the scorners, and to the meek he will give grace. The wise shall possess glory: the promotion of fools is disgrace. Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend that you may know prudence. I will give you a good gift, forsake not my law. For I also was my father’s son, tender and as an only son in the sight of my mother: and he taught me, and said: Let thy heart receive my words, keep my commandments, and thou shalt live. Get wisdom, get prudence: forget not, neither decline from the words of my mouth. Forsake her not, and she shall keep thee: love her, and she shall preserve thee. The beginning of wisdom, get wisdom, and with all thy possession purchase prudence. Take hold on her, and she shall exalt thee: thou shalt be glorified by her, when thou shalt embrace her. She shall give to thy head increase of graces, and protect thee with a noble crown. Hear, O my son, and receive my words, that years of life may be multiplied to thee. I will shew thee the way of wisdom, I will lead thee by the paths of equity: which when thou shalt have entered, thy steps shall not be straitened, and when thou runnest thou shalt not meet a stumblingblock. Take hold on instruction, leave it not: keep it, because it is thy life. Be not delighted in the paths of the wicked, neither let the way of evil men please thee. Flee from it, pass not by it: go aside, and forsake it. For they sleep not except they have done evil: and their sleep is taken away unless they have made some to fall. They eat the bread of wickedness, and drink the wine of iniquity. But the path of the just, as a shining light, goeth forwards and increaseth even to perfect day. The way of the wicked is darksome: they know not where they fall. My son, hearken to my words, and incline thy ear to my sayings. Let them not depart from thy eyes, keep them in the midst of thy heart: for they are life to those that find them, and health to all flesh.