Tuesday, December 1, 2020
St. Hakoveek, Persian martyr,
St. Themistocles, martyr of Lycia
 Better is a man of humble standing who works for himself
than one who plays the great man but lacks bread.
 A righteous man has regard for the life of his beast,
but the mercy of the wicked is cruel.
 He who tills his land will have plenty of bread,
but he who follows worthless pursuits has no sense.
 The strong tower of the wicked comes to ruin,
but the root of the righteous stands firm.
 An evil man is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,
but the righteous escapes from trouble.
 From the fruit of his words a man is satisfied with good,
and the work of a man’s hand comes back to him.
 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
but a wise man listens to advice.
 The vexation of a fool is known at once,
but the prudent man ignores an insult.
 He who speaks the truth gives honest evidence,
but a false witness utters deceit.
 The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases,
his mercies never come to an end;
 they are new every morning;
great is thy faithfulness.
 “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”
 The LORD is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul that seeks him.
 It is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD.
 It is good for a man that he bear
the yoke in his youth.
 Let him sit alone in silence
when he has laid it on him;
 let him put his mouth in the dust —
there may yet be hope;
 let him give his cheek to the smiter,
and be filled with insults.
 For the Lord will not
cast off for ever,
 but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion
according to the abundance of his steadfast love;
 for he does not willingly afflict
or grieve the sons of men.
 To crush under foot
all the prisoners of the earth,
 to turn aside the right of a man
in the presence of the Most High,
 to subvert a man in his cause,
the Lord does not approve.
 Who has commanded and it came to pass,
unless the Lord has ordained it?
 Is it not from the mouth of the Most High
that good and evil come?
 Why should a living man complain,
a man, about the punishment of his sins?
 Let us test and examine our ways,
and return to the LORD!
 Let us lift up our hearts and hands
to God in heaven:
 “We have transgressed and rebelled,
and thou hast not forgiven.
 “Thou hast wrapped thyself with anger and pursued us,
slaying without pity;
 thou hast wrapped thyself with a cloud
so that no prayer can pass through.
 Thou hast made us offscouring and refuse
among the peoples.
 “All our enemies
rail against us;
 panic and pitfall have come upon us,
devastation and destruction;
 my eyes flow with rivers of tears
because of the destruction of the daughter of my people.
 “My eyes will flow without ceasing,
 until the LORD from heaven
looks down and sees;
 my eyes cause me grief
at the fate of all the maidens of my city.
 “I have been hunted like a bird
by those who were my enemies without cause;
 they flung me alive into the pit
and cast stones on me;
 water closed over my head;
I said, `I am lost.’
 “I called on thy name, O LORD,
from the depths of the pit;
 thou didst hear my plea, `Do not close
thine ear to my cry for help!’
 Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
 Through him we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in our hope of sharing the glory of God.
 More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,
 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,
 and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us.
 Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.
 Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.
 “I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.
 But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear him!
 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God.
 Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.
 “And I tell you, every one who acknowledges me before men, the Son of man also will acknowledge before the angels of God;
 but he who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God.
The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America