Scripture Readings (KJV)
1O LORD, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.
2For thou hast made of a city an heap; of a defenced city a ruin: a palace of strangers to be no city; it shall never be built.
3Therefore shall the strong people glorify thee, the city of the terrible nations shall fear thee.
4For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.
5Thou shalt bring down the noise of strangers, as the heat in a dry place; even the heat with the shadow of a cloud: the branch of the terrible ones shall be brought low.
6And in this mountain shall the LORD of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined.
7And he will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations.
8He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it.
9And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.
Genesis 9.8-17 (Vespers)
8And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying,
9And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;
10And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.
11And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.
12And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:
13I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.
14And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:
15And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.
16And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.
17And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.
Proverbs 12.8-22 (Vespers)
8A man shall be commended according to his wisdom: but he that is of a perverse heart shall be despised.
9He that is despised, and hath a servant, is better than he that honoureth himself, and lacketh bread.
10A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
11He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread: but he that followeth vain persons is void of understanding.
12The wicked desireth the net of evil men: but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit.
13The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble.
14A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man’s hands shall be rendered unto him.
15The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.
16A fool’s wrath is presently known: but a prudent man covereth shame.
17He that speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.
18There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.
19The lip of truth shall be established for ever: but a lying tongue is but for a moment.
20Deceit is in the heart of them that imagine evil: but to the counsellors of peace is joy.
21There shall no evil happen to the just: but the wicked shall be filled with mischief.
22Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.
9Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the people be assembled: who among them can declare this, and shew us former things? let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified: or let them hear, and say, It is truth.
10Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.
11I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour.
12I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed, when there was no strange god among you: therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I am God.
13Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who shall let it?
14Thus saith the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; For your sake I have sent to Babylon, and have brought down all their nobles, and the Chaldeans, whose cry is in the ships.
Wisdom of Solomon 3.1-9
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.
Wisdom of Solomon 5.15-6.3
15But the righteous live for evermore; their reward also is with the Lord, and the care of them is with the most High.
16Therefore shall they receive a glorious kingdom, and a beautiful crown from the Lord’s hand: for with his right hand shall he cover them, and with his arm shall he protect them.
17He shall take to him his jealousy for complete armour, and make the creature his weapon for the revenge of his enemies.
18He shall put on righteousness as a breastplate, and true judgment instead of an helmet.
19He shall take holiness for an invincible shield.
20His severe wrath shall he sharpen for a sword, and the world shall fight with him against the unwise.
21Then shall the right aiming thunderbolts go abroad; and from the clouds, as from a well drawn bow, shall they fly to the mark.
22And hailstones full of wrath shall be cast as out of a stone bow, and the water of the sea shall rage against them, and the floods shall cruelly drown them.
23Yea, a mighty wind shall stand up against them, and like a storm shall blow them away: thus iniquity shall lay waste the whole earth, and ill dealing shall overthrow the thrones of the mighty.
1Hear therefore, O ye kings, and understand; learn, ye that be judges of the ends of the earth.
2Give ear, ye that rule the people, and glory in the multitude of nations.
3For power is given you of the Lord, and sovereignty from the Highest, who shall try your works, and search out your counsels.
St Theophylactus, bishop of Nicomedia (845)
“Theophylact was from the east; his native city is unknown. In Constantinople he became a close friend of Tarasius, who afterwards became Patriarch of Constantinople (see Feb. 25). Theophylact was made Bishop of Nicomedia. After the death of Saint Tarasius, his successor Nicephorus (see June 2) called together a number of Bishops to help him in fighting the iconoclasm of Emperor Leo the Armenian, who reigned from 813 to 820. Among them was Euthymius, Bishop of Sardis (celebrated Dec. 26), who had attended the holy Seventh Ecumenical Council in 787 — he was exiled three times for the sake of the holy icons, and for defying the Emperor Theophilus’ command to renounce the veneration of the icons, was scourged from head to foot until his whole body was one great wound, from which he died eight days later, about the year 830; Joseph of Thessalonica (see July 14); Michael of Synnada (see May 23); Emilian, Bishop of Cyzicus (see Aug. 8); and Saint Theophylact, who boldly rebuked Leo to his face, telling him that because he despised the long-suffering of God, utter destruction was about to overtake him, and there would be none to deliver him. For this, Theophylact was exiled to the fortress of Strobilus in Karia of Asia Minor, where after 30 years of imprisonment and hardship, he gave up his holy soul about the year 845. Leo the Armenian, according to the Saint’s prophecy, was slain in church on the eve of our Lord’s Nativity, in 820.” (Great Horologion)
Hieromartyr Theodoretus (362)
The priest Theodoretus was custodian of a great cathedral in Antioch, built by the Emperor Constantine and known in its time as ‘the golden church’ for the beauty and luxury of its appointments. When Julian the Apostate came to the throne, he denied Christ and launched a persecution of Christians. The Emperor’s uncle, also named Julian, came to Antioch to prosecute the persecution there. After plundering the church he brought Theodoretus to trial and demanded that he deny Christ. Instead, the faithful priest confessed Christ fervently and rebuked the Emperor for having denied the faith and returned to idol-worship ‘as a dog returns to its vomit.’ In spite, the judge urinated in the golden church, for which Theodoretus prophesied that he would die a terrible death. Theodoretus was beheaded, and Julian his judge was seized with terrible abdominal pain from the moment he defiled the church until he died in torment.
Note: Theodoretus is commemorated on March 3 in the Greek Calendar.