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.
Epistle Reading: Romans 2:28-3:18
For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is that
circumcision which is outward in the flesh;
but he is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is that
of the heart, in the Spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not
from men but from God.
What advantage then has the Jew, or what is the profit of
Much in every way! Chiefly because to them were committed the
oracles of God.
For what if some did not believe? Will their unbelief make the
faithfulness of God without effect?
Certainly not! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar.
As it is written: "That You may be justified in Your words, and may
overcome when You are judged."
But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of
God, what shall we say? Is God unjust who inflicts wrath? (I speak as a man.)
Certainly not! For then how will God judge the world?
For if the truth of God has increased through my lie to His
glory, why am I also still judged as a sinner?
And why not say, "Let us do evil that good may come"?; as we
are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say. Their
condemnation is just.
What then? Are we better than they? Not at all. For we have
previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.
As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one;
there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after
They have all gone out of the way; they have together become
unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one."
"Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have
practiced deceit"; "The poison of asps is under their lips";
"Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness."
"Their feet are swift to shed blood;
destruction and misery are in their ways;
and the way of peace they have not known."
"There is no fear of God before their eyes."
Gospel Reading: Matthew 6:31-34,7:9-11
"Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or'
What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?'
"For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your
heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.
"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,
and all these things shall be added to you.
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will
worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
"Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for
bread, will give him a stone?
"Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent?
"If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to
your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good
things to those who ask Him!
Saints and Feasts
Apostles' Fast Begins; Leontius, Hypatius, & Theodulus the Martyrs of Syria