Monday, March 21st, 2016 Readings: Great and Holy Monday

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Jesus, Faith and the Fig Tree

Matins:
Matthew 21:18-43
Sixth Hour:
Ezekiel 1:1-20
Vespers (Presanctified):
Exodus 1:1-20
Job 1:1-12
Matthew 24:3-35

Click link to be taken to passage.

Matins:

Matthew 21:18-43

18 In the morning, as he was returning to the city, he was hungry.

19 And seeing a fig tree by the wayside he went to it, and found nothing on it but leaves only. And he said to it, “May no fruit ever come from you again!” And the fig tree withered at once.

20 When the disciples saw it they marveled, saying, “How did the fig tree wither at once?”

21 And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and never doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ it will be done.

22 And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”

23 And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?”

24 Jesus answered them, “I also will ask you a question; and if you tell me the answer, then I also will tell you by what authority I do these things.

25 The baptism of John, whence was it? From heaven or from men?” And they argued with one another, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say to us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’

26 But if we say, ‘From men,’ we are afraid of the multitude; for all hold that John was a prophet.”

27 So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And he said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.

28 “What do you think? A man had two sons; and he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’

29 And he answered, ‘I will not’; but afterward he repented and went.

30 And he went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ‘I go, sir,’ but did not go.

31 Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, the tax collectors and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

32 For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the harlots believed him; and even when you saw it, you did not afterward repent and believe him.

33 “Hear another parable. There was a householder who planted a vineyard, and set a hedge around it, and dug a wine press in it, and built a tower, and let it out to tenants, and went into another country.

34 When the season of fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants, to get his fruit;

35 and the tenants took his servants and beat one, killed another, and stoned another.

36 Again he sent other servants, more than the first; and they did the same to them.

37 Afterward he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him and have his inheritance.’

39 And they took him and cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him.

40 When therefore the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?”

41 They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and let out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the fruits in their seasons.”

42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures: ‘The very stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes?

43 Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation producing the fruits of it.

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Sixth Hour:

Ezekiel 1:1-20

1 In the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the in month, as I was among the exiles by the river Chebar, the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.

2 On the fifth day of the month (it was the fifth year of the exile of King Jehoiachin),

3 the word of the LORD came to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the LORD was upon him there.

4 As I looked, behold, a stormy wind came out of the north, and a great cloud, with brightness round about it, and fire flashing forth continually, and in the midst of the fire, as it were gleaming bronze.

5 And from the midst of it came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance: they had the form of men,

6 but each had four faces, and each of them had four wings.

7 Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the sole of a calf’s foot; and they sparkled like burnished bronze.

8 Under their wings on their four sides they had human hands. And the four had their faces and their wings thus:

9 their wings touched one another; they went every one straight forward, without turning as they went.

10 As for the likeness of their faces, each had the face of a man in front; the four had the face of a lion on the right side, the four had the face of an ox on the left side, and the four had the face of an eagle at the back.

11 Such were their faces. And their wings were spread out above; each creature had two wings, each of which touched the wing of another, while two covered their bodies.

12 And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit would go, they went, without turning as they went.

13 In the midst of the living creatures there was something that looked like burning coals of fire, like torches moving to and fro among the living creatures; and the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning.

14 And the living creatures darted to and fro, like a flash of lightning.

15 Now as I looked at the living creatures, I saw a wheel upon the earth beside the living creatures, one for each of the four of them.

16 As for the appearance of the wheels and their construction: their appearance was like the gleaming of a chrysolite; and the four had the same likeness, their construction being as it were a wheel within a wheel.

17 When they went, they went in any of their four directions without turning as they went.

18 The four wheels had rims and they had spokes; and their rims were full of eyes round about.

19 And when the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures rose from the earth, the wheels rose.

20 Wherever the spirit would go, they went, and the wheels rose along with them; for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels.

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Vespers (Presanctified):

Exodus 1:1-20

1 THESE are the names of the sons of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each with his household:

2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah,

3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, Dan and Naphtali, Gad and Asher.

5 All the offspring of Jacob were seventy persons; Joseph was already in Egypt.

6 Then Joseph died, and all his brothers, and all that generation.

7 But the descendants of Israel were fruitful and increased greatly; they multiplied and grew exceedingly strong; so that the land was filled with them.

8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.

9 And he said to his people, “Behold, the people of Israel are too many and too mighty for us.

10 Come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and, if war befall us, they join our enemies and fight against us and escape from the land.”

11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with heavy burdens; and they built for Pharaoh store-cities, Pithom and Ra-amses.

12 But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and the more they spread abroad. And the Egyptians were in dread of the people of Israel.

13 So they made the people of Israel serve with rigor,

14 and made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and brick, and in all kinds of work in the field; in all their work they made them serve with rigor.

15 Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah,

16 “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him; but if it is a daughter, she shall live.”

17 But the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live.

18 So the king of Egypt called the midwives, and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?”

19 The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women; for they are vigorous and are delivered before the midwife comes to them.”

20 So God dealt well with the midwives; and the people multiplied and grew very strong.

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Job 1:1-12

1 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God, and turned away from evil.

2 There were born to him seven sons and three daughters.

3 He had seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she-asses, and very many servants; so that this man was the greatest of all the people of the east.

4 His sons used to go and hold a feast in the house of each on his day; and they would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them.

5 And when the days of the feast had run their course, Job would send and sanctify them, and he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all; for Job said, “It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did continually.

6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them.

7 The LORD said to Satan, “Whence have you come?” Satan answered the LORD, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.”

8 And the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?”

9 Then Satan answered the LORD, “Does Job fear God for nought?

10 Hast thou not put a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.

11 But put forth thy hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse thee to thy face.”

12 And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only upon himself do not put forth your hand.” So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

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Matthew 24:3-35

3 As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?”

4 And Jesus answered them, “Take heed that no one leads you astray.

5 For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray.

6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars; see that you are not alarmed; for this must take place, but the end is not yet.

7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places:

8 all this is but the beginning of the birth-pangs.

9 “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation, and put you to death; and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake.

10 And then many will fall away, and betray one another, and hate one another.

11 And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray.

12 And because wickedness is multiplied, most men’s love will grow cold.

13 But he who endures to the end will be saved.

14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, as a testimony to all nations; and then the end will come.

15 “So when you see the desolating sacrilege spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand),

16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains;

17 let him who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house;

18 and let him who is in the field not turn back to take his mantle.

19 And alas for those who are with child and for those who give suck in those days!

20 Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a sabbath.

21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be.

22 And if those days had not been shortened, no human being would be saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.

23 Then if any one says to you, ‘Lo, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There he is!’ do not believe it.

24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.

25 Lo, I have told you beforehand.

26 So, if they say to you, ‘Lo, he is in the wilderness,’ do not go out; if they say, ‘Lo, he is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it.

27 For as the lightning comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of man.

28 Wherever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together.

29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken;

30 then will appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory;

31 and he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

32 “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near.

33 So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates.

34 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away till all these things take place.

35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

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