Readings for Thursday of the first week of Great Lent

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Prophecy

Isaiah 2:11-19 ; Zechariah 8:18-23 [Arabic]

Isaiah 2:11-19

        And the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day.
        For the day of the LORD of hosts
        Shall come upon everything proud and lofty,
        Upon everything lifted up--
        And it shall be brought low--
        Upon all the cedars of Lebanon that are high and lifted up,
        And upon all the oaks of Bashan;
        Upon all the high mountains,
        And upon all the hills that are lifted up;
        Upon every high tower,
        And upon every fortified wall;
        Upon all the ships of Tarshish,
        And upon all the beautiful sloops.
        The loftiness of man shall be bowed down,
        And the haughtiness of men shall be brought low;
        The LORD alone will be exalted in that day,
        But the idols He shall utterly abolish.
        They shall go into the holes of the rocks,
        And into the caves of the earth,
        From the terror of the LORD
        And the glory of His majesty,
        When He arises to shake the earth mightily.



Zechariah 8:18-23

Then the word of the LORD of hosts came to me, saying, "Thus says the LORD of hosts:
        "The fast of the fourth month,
        The fast of the fifth,
        The fast of the seventh,
        And the fast of the tenth,
        Shall be joy and gladness and cheerful feasts
        For the house of Judah.
        Therefore love truth and peace.'

"Thus says the LORD of hosts:
        "Peoples shall yet come,
        Inhabitants of many cities;
        The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying,
        "Let us continue to go and pray before the LORD,
        And seek the LORD of hosts.
        I myself will go also."
        Yes, many peoples and strong nations
        Shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem,
        And to pray before the LORD.'

"Thus says the LORD of hosts: "In those days ten men from every language of the nations shall grasp the sleeve of a Jewish man, saying, "Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you."

Psalm

Psalm 23:1-2 [Arabic]

The earth is the LORD's, and all its fullness,
The world and those who dwell therein.
2For He has founded it upon the seas,
And established it upon the waters.

 

Gospel

Luke 8:23-25 [Arabic]

But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, "Master, Master, we are perishing!"

Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm. But He said to them, "Where is your faith?"

And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, "Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!"

 

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Pauline Epistle

1Corinthians 4:16-end ; 1Corinthians 5:1-9 [Arabic]

Therefore I urge you, imitate me. For this reason I have sent Timothy to you, who is my beloved and faithful son in the Lord, who will remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church.

Now some are puffed up, as though I were not coming to you. But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord wills, and I will know, not the word of those who are puffed up, but the power. For the kingdom of God is not in word but in power. What do you want? Shall I come to you with a rod, or in love and a spirit of gentleness? It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and such sexual immorality as is not even named among the Gentiles--that a man has his father's wife! And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he who has done this deed might be taken away from among you. For I indeed, as absent in body but present in spirit, have already judged as though I were present him who has so done this deed. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, along with my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people.

 

Catholic Epistle

1John 1:8-end ; 1John 2:1-11 [Arabic]

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.

Brethren, I write no new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you heard from the beginning. Again, a new commandment I write to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.

He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

 

Acts

Acts 8:3-13 [Arabic]

As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison.

Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word. Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. And there was great joy in that city.

But there was a certain man called Simon, who previously practiced sorcery in the city and astonished the people of Samaria, claiming that he was someone great, to whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, "This man is the great power of God." And they heeded him because he had astonished them with his sorceries for a long time. But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done.

 

Synaxarium

Departure of St. Elizabeth

 

Psalm

Psalm 117:14 ; Psalm 117:18 [Arabic]

The LORD is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation.
The LORD has chastened me severely,
But He has not given me over to death.

 

Gospel

Mark 4:21-29 [Arabic]

Also He said to them, "Is a lamp brought to be put under a basket or under a bed? Is it not to be set on a lampstand? For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear."

Then He said to them, "Take heed what you hear. With the same measure you use, it will be measured to you; and to you who hear, more will be given. For whoever has, to him more will be given; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him."

And He said, "The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself: first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come."

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