Thursday in the Twentieth Week after Pentecost
The Lesson of the Epistle of the Holy Apostle Paul to the Philippians.
Philippians §244 (3:1-8).
Brethren: Rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not wearisome, but to you it is necessary. Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision. For we are the circumcision, who in spirit serve God; and glory in Christ Jesus, not having confidence in the flesh. Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other thinketh he may have confidence in the flesh, I more, being circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; according to the law, a Pharisee: according to zeal, persecuting the church of God; according to the justice that is in the law, conversing without blame. But the things that were gain to me, the same I have counted loss for Christ. Furthermore I count all things to be but loss for the excellent knowledge of Jesus Christ my Lord; for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but as dung, that I may gain Christ.
The Lesson of the Holy Gospel according to Saint Luke.
Saint Luke §31 (7:17-30).
At that time: The word of Jesus went forth throughout all Judea, and throughout all the country round about. And John’s disciples told him of all these things. And John called to him two of his disciples, and sent them to Jesus, saying: Art thou He that art to come; or look we for another? And when the men were come unto Him, they said: John the Baptist hath sent us to Thee, saying: Art Thou He that art to come; or look we for another? (And in that same hour, He cured many of their diseases, and hurts, and evil spirits: and to many that were blind He gave sight.) And answering, He said to them: Go and relate to John what you have heard and seen: the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are made clean, the deaf hear, the dead rise again, to the poor the gospel is preached: and blessed is he whosoever shall not be scandalized in Me. And when the messengers of John were departed, He began to speak to the multitudes concerning John. What went ye out into the desert to see? A reed shaken with the wind? But what went you out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Behold they that are in costly apparel and live delicately, are in the houses of kings. But what went you out to see? A prophet? Yea, I say to you, and more than a prophet. This is he of whom it is written: Behold I send my angel before Thy face, who shall prepare Thy way before Thee. For I say to you: Amongst those that are born of women, there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist. But he that is the lesser in the kingdom of God, is greater than he. And all the people hearing, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with John’s baptism. But the Pharisees and the lawyers despised the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized by him.