October 20 Epistle Reading

Colossians 3:17 – 4:1

17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. 18 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. 19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter toward them. 20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord. 21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. 22 Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God. 23 And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. 25 But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality. 1 Masters, give your bondservants what is just and fair, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven.

St. John Chrysostom in his Homilies IX and X on Colossians III said:

“If you eat, if you drink, if you marry, if you travel, do all in the name of God, that is, calling Him to aid you: in everything first praying to Him, so take hold of your business. Do you plan to speak? Set this in front. For this cause we also place in front of our epistles the name of the Lord. Wheresoever the name of God is, all is auspicious…”

“You see how again he has exhorted to reciprocity …To love, therefore, is the husband’s part, to yield pertains to the other side. If then each one contributes his own part, all stands firm. From being loved, the wife too becomes loving; and from her being submissive, the husband becomes yielding …Do not therefore, because your wife is subject to you, act the despot; nor because your husband loves you, be puffed up… What is ‘just’? What is ‘equal?’ To place them in plenty of everything, and not allow them to stand in need of others, but to recompense them for their labors.”

Gregory the Great in Pastoral Care 3.4 said:

“Subjects are to be admonished in one way, superiors in another, but the former in such a way that subjection may not crush them; the latter, that their exalted position may not lift them up; the former; that they should not do less than is ordered; the latter, that they should not command more than is just; the former that they submit with humility; the latter, that they be moderate in the exercise of their superiority. For it is said to the former, and this can be understood figuratively: ‘Children, obey your parents in the Lord.’ But superiors are commanded: ‘Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger.’ Let the former learn to order their interior dispositions before the eyes of the hidden Judge; the others, how to set outwardly the example of a good life to those committed to them.”

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