Scripture Readings (KJV)
Deuteronomy 1.8-11, 15-17 (Vespers)
8Behold, I have set the land before you: go in and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give unto them and to their seed after them.
9And I spake unto you at that time, saying, I am not able to bear you myself alone:
10The LORD your God hath multiplied you, and, behold, ye are this day as the stars of heaven for multitude.
11(The LORD God of your fathers make you a thousand times so many more as ye are, and bless you, as he hath promised you!)
15So I took the chief of your tribes, wise men, and known, and made them heads over you, captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, and captains over fifties, and captains over tens, and officers among your tribes.
16And I charged your judges at that time, saying, Hear the causes between your brethren, and judge righteously between every man and his brother, and the stranger that is with him.
17Ye shall not respect persons in judgment; but ye shall hear the small as well as the great; ye shall not be afraid of the face of man; for the judgment is God’s: and the cause that is too hard for you, bring it unto me, and I will hear it.
Deuteronomy 10.14-21 (Vespers)
14Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the LORD’s thy God, the earth also, with all that therein is.
15Only the LORD had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and he chose their seed after them, even you above all people, as it is this day.
16Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiffnecked.
17For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward:
18He doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loveth the stranger, in giving him food and raiment.
19Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.
20Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God; him shalt thou serve, and to him shalt thou cleave, and swear by his name.
21He is thy praise, and he is thy God, that hath done for thee these great and terrible things, which thine eyes have seen.
Wisdom of Solomon 3.1-9 (Vespers)
1But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and there shall no torment touch them.
2In the sight of the unwise they seemed to die: and their departure is taken for misery,
3And their going from us to be utter destruction: but they are in peace.
4For though they be punished in the sight of men, yet is their hope full of immortality.
5And having been a little chastised, they shall be greatly rewarded: for God proved them, and found them worthy for himself.
6As gold in the furnace hath he tried them, and received them as a burnt offering.
7And in the time of their visitation they shall shine, and run to and fro like sparks among the stubble.
8They shall judge the nations, and have dominion over the people, and their Lord shall reign for ever.
9They that put their trust in him shall understand the truth: and such as be faithful in love shall abide with him: for grace and mercy is to his saints, and he hath care for his elect.
9I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
10The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
11I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
12But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.
13The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.
14I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
15As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
16And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.
1 Peter 2.21-3.9 (Epistle)
21For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
22Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
23Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
24Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
25For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.
1Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;
2While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.
3Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
4But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
5For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:
6Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.
7Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
8Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:
9Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.
7Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.
8Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.
9Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.
10We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.
11For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned without the camp.
12Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.
13Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.
14For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.
15By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
16But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
Mark 12.13-17 (Gospel)
13And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch him in his words.
14And when they were come, they say unto him, Master, we know that thou art true, and carest for no man: for thou regardest not the person of men, but teachest the way of God in truth: Is it lawful to give tribute to Cæsar, or not?
15Shall we give, or shall we not give? But he, knowing their hypocrisy, said unto them, Why tempt ye me? bring me a penny, that I may see it.
16And they brought it. And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? And they said unto him, Cæsar’s.
17And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Cæsar the things that are Cæsar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.
14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
17Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
18For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
19Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Synaxis of the Three Holy Hierarchs: St Basil the Great, St Gregory the Theologian, and St John Chrysostom
This feast was instituted during the reign of Alexis I Comnenus (1081 1118). A dispute arose in Constantinople among various prominent citizens and clergy, about which of the three Fathers Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian, or St John Chrysostom was the greatest. In typically Byzantine fashion, the people of the City joined into the dispute, which became more animated, dividing the populace into three hostile factions styling themselves Basilians, Gregorians and Joannites. At last, desiring to restore peace to the City and the Church, the three holy hierarchs themselves appeared to the monk John Mauropus; they revealed to him that they stand together in harmony and in equal glory before the heavenly throne, and instructed him to compose a common service for the three of them. Saint John (Mauropus) obeyed, and chose January 30 as the date of the commemoration, since each of the three hierarchs is commemorated separately in January.
Saint Peter, King of Bulgaria (970)
“Saint Peter was a humble, devout and peace-loving man, unlike his father, Tsar Symeon the Warrior (d. 927), during whose reign there had been perpetual warfare. By contrast, Peter’s long reign was peaceful, and notable for the restoration of good relations with Byzantium and with the West. Peter married Maria, the grand-daughter of the Emperor Romanus Lecapenus, who recognized him as basileus (tsar or king), and he obtained independence from Constantinople for the Bulgarian Church with its own Patriarch. He had a great love for Saint John of Rila (19 Oct.), whom he would often consult, and he kept in touch with renowned ascetics of the time like Saint Paul of Latros (15 Dec.). The King acted energetically against the Bogomil heresy, an offshoot of Manicheism, by which some of his people, lacking sufficient instruction in the faith, were being misled. He called a council in order to condemn the heresy and reassert Christian principles. Nevertheless, the infection was to remain active for many years in Bulgaria. Following the invasion of the north of his Kingdom by Prince Svyatoslav of Kiev in 969, Peter abdicated and became a monk. He died in the following year, having consecrated his final days to God alone.” (Synaxarion)
A note on the Bogomils: The Bogomils flourished in the Eastern Europe as an organized church from the 10th to the 15th century. In theology they were dualistic, incorporating some Manichean and Gnostic ideas from the Paulicians. They were nationalistic and gained much support through their opposition to Byzantine dominance over the Slavic peoples. They disappeared as an organized body around the fifteenth century, but elements of their beliefs persisted in popular thinking for many centuries afterward.