Scripture Readings (KJV)
1 John 3.21-4.6 (Vespers)
21Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.
22And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
23And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.
24And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
1Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
2Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:
3And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
4Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
5They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.
6We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.
1 John 4.11-16 (Vespers)
11Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
12No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
13Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.
14And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.
15Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
16And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
1 John 4.20-5.5 (Vespers)
20If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?
21And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.
1Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
2By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
3For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
4For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
5Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
15So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.
16He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
17He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.
18Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not.
19This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me.
20Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?
21Peter seeing him saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do?
22Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.
23Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?
24This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true.
25And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
Acts 8.26-39 (Epistle)
26And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
27And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship,
28Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
29Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.
30And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?
31And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
32The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth:
33In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
34And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
35Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
36And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?
37And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
38And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
39And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.
1 Corinthians 4.9-16
(Epistle, St Simon)
9For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.
10We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.
11Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace;
12And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it:
13Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.
14I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.
15For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
16Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.
John 6.40-44 (Gospel)
40And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
41The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.
42And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?
43Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.
44No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
(Gospel, St Simon)
54And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?
55Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?
56And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?
57And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.
58And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
Apostle Simon Zelotes
He was one of the Twelve. He was born in Cana of Galilee; some accounts say that he was the bridegroom at the wedding at Cana, where the Lord Jesus performed his first sign (John ch. 2). After receiving the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, he preached the Gospel in Africa; he was privileged to die by crucifixion, like his Lord.
Holy Martyrs Alphaeus, Philadelphus and Cyprinus of Sicily (251)
They were brothers living in southern Italy, of noble family and devout faith in Christ. (They were the sons of Vitalius, a pagan governor.) Arrested for their confession of Christ, they were taken before a series of judges, subjected to torture each time. Finally they were taken to Sicily and tortured to death there, during the reign of Licinius. Their incorrupt relics were found in 1517. They once appeared in a vision to St Euthalia (March 2).
St Isidora the Fool of Tabenna (Egypt) (4th c.)
She was a nun in a monastery in Egypt, and pretended madness and mental weakness in order to hide her virtues and her ascetic life. She did the dirtiest jobs, lived on scraps from the nuns’ tables, and was despised by her sisters. An angel appeared to the ascetic Pitirim and revealed Isidora’s true sanctity to him. He came to the monastery and, seeing Isidora, prostrated himself before her, at which she prostrated before him. When the sisters told him that she was mad, he answered “It is you who are mad: she is greater before God than either you or me. I only beg God to give me also that which is destined for her at the dreadful Judgement.” At this, the sisters’ eyes were opened, and they began to treat Isidora with honor. But she, to avoid being honored by anyone, fled the monastery and was not heard from again.
Blessed Thaïs (Taïsia) of Egypt (4th c.)
“Thaïs was a rich maiden, a Christian in Egypt. She decided not to marry, but to give her possessions to the hermit monks. But, when she had given away all her goods, she gave herself to a life of debauchery. Hearing of this, the hermits begged Abba John the Dwarf to do something, and he went to Alexandria and began to weep in Thaïs’ hearing. When she heard the old man weeping for her sins, she repented at once, left her house and everything she had and went into the desert after the saint. One night when she was sleeping and John was standing in prayer, he saw an angel in a nimbus of light coming down to take Thaïs’ soul. And John saw that her sudden but deep repentance was more pleasing to God than the years-long but shallow repentance of many of the hermits.” (Prologue)