Readings for Wednesday of the second week of Great Lent

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Prophecy

Exodus 2:11-20 ; Isaiah 5:17-25 ; Malachi 1:6-end;Malachi 3:1-end; Malachi 4:1-6 [Arabic]

Exodus 2:11-20

Now it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out to his brethren and looked at their burdens. And he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his brethren. So he looked this way and that way, and when he saw no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. And when he went out the second day, behold, two Hebrew men were fighting, and he said to the one who did the wrong, "Why are you striking your companion?"

Then he said, "Who made you a prince and a judge over us? Do you intend to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?"

So Moses feared and said, "Surely this thing is known!" When Pharaoh heard of this matter, he sought to kill Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh and dwelt in the land of Midian; and he sat down by a well.

Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters. And they came and drew water, and they filled the troughs to water their father's flock. Then the shepherds came and drove them away; but Moses stood up and helped them, and watered their flock.

When they came to Reuel their father, he said, "How is it that you have come so soon today?"

And they said, "An Egyptian delivered us from the hand of the shepherds, and he also drew enough water for us and watered the flock."

So he said to his daughters, "And where is he? Why is it that you have left the man? Call him, that he may eat bread."



Isaiah 5:17-25

Then the lambs shall feed in their pasture,
        And in the waste places of the fat ones strangers shall eat.
        Woe to those who draw iniquity with cords of vanity,
        And sin as if with a cart rope;
        That say, "Let Him make speed and hasten His work,
        That we may see it;
        And let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw near and come,
        That we may know it."
        Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
        Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
        Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
        Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
        And prudent in their own sight!
        Woe to men mighty at drinking wine,
        Woe to men valiant for mixing intoxicating drink,
        Who justify the wicked for a bribe,
        And take away justice from the righteous man!
        Therefore, as the fire devours the stubble,
        And the flame consumes the chaff,
        So their root will be as rottenness,
        And their blossom will ascend like dust;
        Because they have rejected the law of the LORD of hosts,
        And despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
        Therefore the anger of the LORD is aroused against His people;
        He has stretched out His hand against them
        And stricken them,
        And the hills trembled.
        Their carcasses were as refuse in the midst of the streets.
        For all this His anger is not turned away,
        But His hand is stretched out still.



Malachi 1:6-end ; Malachi 3:1-6

"A son honors his father,
And a servant his master.
If then I am the Father,
Where is My honor?
And if I am a Master,
Where is My reverence?
Says the LORD of hosts
To you priests who despise My name.
Yet you say, "In what way have we despised Your name?'


"You offer defiled food on My altar,
But say,
"In what way have we defiled You?'
By saying,
"The table of the LORD is contemptible.'
And when you offer the blind as a sacrifice,
Is it not evil?
And when you offer the lame and sick,
Is it not evil?
Offer it then to your governor!
Would he be pleased with you?
Would he accept you favorably?"
Says the LORD of hosts.


"But now entreat God's favor,
That He may be gracious to us.
While this is being done by your hands,
Will He accept you favorably?"
Says the LORD of hosts.
"Who is there even among you who would shut the doors,
So that you would not kindle fire on My altar in vain?
I have no pleasure in you,"
Says the LORD of hosts,
"Nor will I accept an offering from your hands.
For from the rising of the sun, even to its going down,
My name shall be great among the Gentiles;
In every place incense shall be offered to My name,
And a pure offering;
For My name shall be great among the nations,"
Says the LORD of hosts.


"But you profane it,
In that you say,
"The table of the LORD is defiled;
And its fruit, its food, is contemptible.'
You also say,
"Oh, what a weariness!'
And you sneer at it,"
Says the LORD of hosts.
"And you bring the stolen, the lame, and the sick;
Thus you bring an offering!
Should I accept this from your hand?"
Says the LORD.
"But cursed be the deceiver
Who has in his flock a male,
And takes a vow,
But sacrifices to the Lord what is blemished--
For I am a great King,"
Says the LORD of hosts,
"And My name is to be feared among the nations.
"Behold, I send My messenger,
And he will prepare the way before Me.
And the Lord, whom you seek,
Will suddenly come to His temple,
Even the Messenger of the covenant,
In whom you delight.
Behold, He is coming,"
Says the LORD of hosts.


"But who can endure the day of His coming?
And who can stand when He appears?
For He is like a refiner's fire
And like launderers' soap.
He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver;
He will purify the sons of Levi,
And purge them as gold and silver,
That they may offer to the LORD
An offering in righteousness.


"Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem
Will be pleasant to the LORD,
As in the days of old,
As in former years.
And I will come near you for judgment;
I will be a swift witness
Against sorcerers,
Against adulterers,
Against perjurers,
Against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans,
And against those who turn away an alien--
Because they do not fear Me,"
Says the LORD of hosts.


"For I am the LORD, I do not change;
Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.
Yet from the days of your fathers
You have gone away from My ordinances
And have not kept them.
Return to Me, and I will return to you,"
Says the LORD of hosts.
"But you said,
"In what way shall we return?'
"Will a man rob God?
Yet you have robbed Me!
But you say,
"In what way have we robbed You?'
In tithes and offerings.
You are cursed with a curse,
For you have robbed Me,
Even this whole nation.
Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,
That there may be food in My house,
And try Me now in this,"
Says the LORD of hosts,
"If I will not open for you the windows of heaven
And pour out for you such blessing
That there will not be room enough to receive it.


"And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes,
So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground,
Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,"
Says the LORD of hosts;
And all nations will call you blessed,
For you will be a delightful land,"
Says the LORD of hosts.
"Your words have been harsh against Me,"
Says the LORD,
"Yet you say,
"What have we spoken against You?'
You have said,
"It is useless to serve God;
What profit is it that we have kept His ordinance,
And that we have walked as mourners
Before the LORD of hosts?
So now we call the proud blessed,
For those who do wickedness are raised up;
They even tempt God and go free."'
Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another,
And the LORD listened and heard them;
So a book of remembrance was written before Him
For those who fear the LORD
And who meditate on His name.


"They shall be Mine," says the LORD of hosts,
"On the day that I make them My jewels.
And I will spare them
As a man spares his own son who serves him."
Then you shall again discern
Between the righteous and the wicked,
Between one who serves God
And one who does not serve Him.
"For behold, the day is coming,
Burning like an oven,
And all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble.
And the day which is coming shall burn them up,"
Says the LORD of hosts,
"That will leave them neither root nor branch.
But to you who fear My name
The Sun of Righteousness shall arise
With healing in His wings;
And you shall go out
And grow fat like stall-fed calves.
You shall trample the wicked,
For they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet
On the day that I do this,"
Says the LORD of hosts.


"Remember the Law of Moses, My servant,
Which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel,
With the statutes and judgments.
Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet
Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.
And he will turn
The hearts of the fathers to the children,
And the hearts of the children to their fathers,
Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse."

Psalm

Psalm 18:17-18 [Arabic]

He delivered me from my strong enemy,
From those who hated me,
For they were too strong for me.
They confronted me in the day of my calamity,
But the LORD was my support.

 

Gospel

Matthew 5:17-24 [Arabic]

"Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.

"You have heard that it was said to those of old, "You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.' But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, "Raca!' shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, "You fool!' shall be in danger of hell fire. Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

 

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Pauline Epistle

Romans 3:1-18 [Arabic]

What advantage then has the Jew, or what is the profit of circumcision? 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 God.
        They have all turned aside;
        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."
       

 

Catholic Epistle

2John 1:8-13 [Arabic]

Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.

Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.

Having many things to write to you, I did not wish to do so with paper and ink; but I hope to come to you and speak face to face, that our joy may be full.

The children of your elect sister greet you. Amen.

 

Acts

Acts 5:3-11 [Arabic]

But Peter said, "Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God."

Then Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and breathed his last. So great fear came upon all those who heard these things. And the young men arose and wrapped him up, carried him out, and buried him.

Now it was about three hours later when his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. And Peter answered her, "Tell me whether you sold the land for so much?"

She said, "Yes, for so much."

Then Peter said to her, "How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out." Then immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. And the young men came in and found her dead, and carrying her out, buried her by her husband. So great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things.

 

Synaxarium

The Martyrdom Of St. Basil (Basilaos) The Bishop.

 

Psalm

Psalm 18:1-2 [Arabic]

I will love You, O LORD, my strength.
The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer;
My God, my strength, in whom I will trust;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

 

Gospel

Matthew 15:32-38 [Arabic]

Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself and said, "I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way."

Then His disciples said to Him, "Where could we get enough bread in the wilderness to fill such a great multitude?"

Jesus said to them, "How many loaves do you have?"

And they said, "Seven, and a few little fish."

So He commanded the multitude to sit down on the ground. And He took the seven loaves and the fish and gave thanks, broke them and gave them to His disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitude. So they all ate and were filled, and they took up seven large baskets full of the fragments that were left. Now those who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children.

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