October 23 Gospel Reading

Matthew 13:54-58

54 And when He had come to His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished and said, “Where did this Man get this wisdom and these mighty works? 55 Is this not the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary? And His brothers James, Joses, Simon, and Judas? 56 And His sisters, are they not all with us? Where then did this Man get all these things?” 57 So they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.” 58 Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

Origen in Against Celsus Book VI said: Continue reading

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September 21 Gospel Reading

Luke 3:23 – 4:1

23 Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of Heli, 24 the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Janna, the son of Joseph, 25 the son of Mattathiah, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 26 the son of Maath, the son of Mattathiah, the son of Semei, the son of Joseph, the son of Judah, 27 the son of Joannas, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28 the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmodam, the son of Er, 29 the son of Jose, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 the son of Simeon, the son of Judah, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonan, the son of Eliakim, 31 the son of Melea, the son of Menan, the son of Mattathah, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32 the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 33 the son of Amminadab, the son of Ram, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 34 the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalalel, the son of Cainan, 38 the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God. 1 Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness,

Origen in his Homilies on Genesis said: Continue reading

September 14 Gospel Reading

John 19:6-11, 13-20, 25-35

6 Therefore, when the chief priests and officers saw Him, they cried out, saying, “Crucify Him, crucify Him!” Pilate said to them, “You take Him and crucify Him, for I find no fault in Him.” 7 The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to our law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God.” 8 Therefore, when Pilate heard that saying, he was the more afraid, 9 and went again into the Praetorium, and said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. 10 Then Pilate said to Him, “Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?” 11 Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.” Continue reading

June 13 Epistle Reading

Romans 5:1-10

[1] Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God
through our Lord Jesus Christ:[2] By whom also we have access
by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the
glory of God.[3] And not only so, but we glory in
tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;[4]
And patience, experience; and experience, hope:[5] And hope
maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts
by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.[6] For when we
were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.[7]
For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a
good man some would even dare to die.[8] But God commendeth
his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for
us.[9] Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we
shall be saved from wrath through him.[10] For if, when we
were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much
more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Origen in his Commentary on the Epistle to the Romans says:

"How we have access to grace through our Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior himself tells us 'I am the door,' and 'No one comes to the Father except by me.'…This door is the truth, and liars cannot enter in by the door of truth. Again, this door is righteousness, and the unrighteous cannot enter in by it. The Door himself says, 'Learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart.' So neither the irascible nor the proud can enter in by the door of humility and gentleness. Therefore, if anyone wants to have access to the grace of God which according to the word of the apostle comes through our Lord Jesus Christ and in which Paul and those like him claim to stand, it is essential that he be cleansed of all the things which we have listed above. Otherwise those who do what is contrary to Christ will not be allowed to go in by that door, which will remain closed and keep out those who are incompatible with him."

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June 9 Gospel Reading

Matthew 10:16-22

16 Behold, I
send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as
serpents, and harmless as doves.
17 But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the
councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues;

18 And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my
sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles.
19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what
ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye
shall speak.

20 For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father
which speaketh in you.

21 And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and
the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their
parents, and cause them to be put to death.

22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake:
but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

Craig S. Keener in his "A Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew" wrote:

"Matthew's inclusion of material concerning persecution in his discourse on the kingdom mission indicates his view that persecution and proclamations are inseparable, as does a brief perusal of Acts or Paul's letters. For early Christians, true ministry inevitably involved suffering, especially if that ministry was a frontline ministry to nonbelievers. Yet as Jesus reminds the disciples in the next section, the worst persecutors can accomplish is the disciples' death, and disciples dies anyway with or without persecution…persecution becomes an opportunity for testimony, and the Spirit of prophecy will provide the words they need.

"Sheep were notoriously defenseless against such predators as wolves and Jewish texts often portray God's people in this manner…Jesus drives home the point…his sheep are actually sent among the predators."

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