Epistle Reading: Romans 2:10-16
but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is
good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
For there is no partiality with God.
For as many as have sinned without law will also perish
without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the
(for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God,
but the doers of the law will be justified;
for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the
things contained in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law
who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their
conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts
accusing or else excusing them)
in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus
Christ, according to my gospel.
Epistle Reading: Romans 13:11-14:4
And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to
awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first
The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us
cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.
Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and
drunkenness, not in licentiousness and lewdness, not in strife and envy.
But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for
the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.
Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to disputes
over doubtful things.
For one believes he may eat all things, but he who is weak
eats only vegetables.
Let not him who eats despise him who does not eat, and let
not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for God has received him.
Who are you to judge another's servant? To his own master he
stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make
Gospel Reading: Matthew 4:18-23
Now Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers,
Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for
they were fishermen.
And He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers
Then they immediately left their nets and followed Him.
And going on from there, He saw two other brothers, James
the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their
father, mending their nets. And He called them,
and immediately they left the boat and their father, and
Now Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their
synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of
sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.
Gospel Reading: Luke 1:5-25,57-68,76,80
There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain
priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the
daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the
commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.
But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they
were both well advanced in years.
So it was, that while he was serving as priest before God in the
order of his division,
according to the custom of the priesthood, his lot fell to burn
incense when he went into the temple of the Lord.
And the whole multitude of the people was praying outside at
the hour of incense.
Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the
right side of the altar of incense.
And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon
But the angel said to him, "Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for
your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you
shall call his name John.
"And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at
"For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall
drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy
Spirit, even from his mother's womb.
"And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord
"He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, '
to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,' and the disobedient to
the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."
And Zacharias said to the angel, "How shall I know this? For I
am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years."
And the angel answered and said to him, "I am Gabriel, who
stands in the presence of God, and was sent to speak to you and bring you
these glad tidings.
"But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the
day these things take place, because you did not believe my words which
will be fulfilled in their own time."
And the people waited for Zacharias, and marveled that he
lingered so long in the temple.
But when he came out, he could not speak to them; and they
perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple, for he beckoned to them
and remained speechless.
And so it was, as soon as the days of his service were
completed, that he departed to his own house.
Now after those days his wife Elizabeth conceived; and she hid
herself five months, saying,
"Thus the Lord has dealt with me, in the days when He looked
on me, to take away my reproach among men."
Now Elizabeth's full time came for her to be delivered, and she
brought forth a son.
When her neighbors and relatives heard how the Lord had shown
great mercy to her, they rejoiced with her.
Now so it was, on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise
the child; and they would have called him by the name of his father,
And his mother answered and said, "No; he shall be called John."
But they said to her, "There is no one among your relatives who
is called by this name."
So they made signs to his father; what he would have him called.
And he asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, saying, "His name
is John." And they all marveled.
Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he
spoke, praising God.
Then fear came on all who dwelt around them; and all these
sayings were discussed throughout all the hill country of Judea.
And all those who heard them kept them in their hearts, saying, "
What kind of child will this be?" And the hand of the Lord was with him.
Now his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and
"Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited and
redeemed His people,
and you, child, will be called the prophet of the Highest; for
you will go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways,
So the child grew and became strong in spirit, and was in the
deserts till the day of his manifestation to Israel.
Saints and Feasts
Birth of Saint John the Baptist; Nativity of the Forerunner John the Baptist; St. Elizabeth, Mother of the Forerunner; Panagiotis the New Martyr