Saturday, April 24, 2021
Twenty-first Day of Zadeeg,
Remembrance of the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide
I Peter 4:12-19
 And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases,
 and he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal.
 And he said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not have two tunics.
 And whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart.
 And wherever they do not receive you, when you leave that town shake off the dust from your feet as a testimony against them.”
 And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.
 Now Herod the tetrarch heard of all that was done, and he was perplexed, because it was said by some that John had been raised from the dead,
 by some that Eli’jah had appeared, and by others that one of the old prophets had risen.
 Herod said, “John I beheaded; but who is this about whom I hear such things?” And he sought to see him.
 On their return the apostles told him what they had done. And he took them and withdrew apart to a city called Beth-sa’ida.
 When the crowds learned it, they followed him; and he welcomed them and spoke to them of the kingdom of God, and cured those who had need of healing.
 Now the day began to wear away; and the twelve came and said to him, “Send the crowd away, to go into the villages and country round about, to lodge and get provisions; for we are here in a lonely place.”
 But he said to them, “You give them something to eat.” They said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish — unless we are to go and buy food for all these people.”
 For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, “Make them sit down in companies, about fifty each.”
 And they did so, and made them all sit down.
 And taking the five loaves and the two fish he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd.
 And all ate and were satisfied. And they took up what was left over, twelve baskets of broken pieces.
 And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem when they had fulfilled their mission, bringing with them John whose other name was Mark.
 Now in the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyre’ne, Man’a-en a member of the court of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”
 Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off.
 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleu’cia; and from there they sailed to Cyprus.
 When they arrived at Sal’amis, they proclaimed the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. And they had John to assist them.
 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came upon a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet, named Bar-Jesus.
 He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence, who summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God.
 But El’ymas the magician (for that is the meaning of his name) withstood them, seeking to turn away the proconsul from the faith.
 But Saul, who is also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him
 and said, “You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord?
 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you shall be blind and unable to see the sun for a time.” Immediately mist and darkness fell upon him and he went about seeking people to lead him by the hand.
 Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had occurred, for he was astonished at the teaching of the Lord.
 Now Paul and his company set sail from Paphos, and came to Perga in Pamphyl’ia. And John left them and returned to Jerusalem;
 but they passed on from Perga and came to Antioch of Pisid’ia. And on the sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down.
 After the reading of the law and the prophets, the rulers of the synagogue sent to them, saying, “Brethren, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, say it.”
I Peter 4:12-19
 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you.
 But rejoice in so far as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.
 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or a wrongdoer, or a mischief-maker;
 yet if one suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but under that name let him glorify God.
 For the time has come for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?
 And “If the righteous man is scarcely saved,
where will the impious and sinner appear?”
 Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will do right and entrust their souls to a faithful Creator.
 After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
 Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Hebrew called Beth-za’tha, which has five porticoes.
 In these lay a multitude of invalids, blind, lame, paralyzed.
 One man was there, who had been ill for thirty-eight years.
 When Jesus saw him and knew that he had been lying there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?”
 The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is troubled, and while I am going another steps down before me.”
 Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your pallet, and walk.”
 And at once the man was healed, and he took up his pallet and walked.
Now that day was the sabbath.
 So the Jews said to the man who was cured, “It is the sabbath, it is not lawful for you to carry your pallet.”
 But he answered them, “The man who healed me said to me, `Take up your pallet, and walk.’”
 They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, `Take up your pallet, and walk’?”
 Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place.
 Afterward, Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse befall you.”
 The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him.
 And this was why the Jews persecuted Jesus, because he did this on the sabbath.
 But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working still, and I am working.”
 This was why the Jews sought all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the sabbath but also called God his Father, making himself equal with God.
 And when Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities.
 Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples
 and said to him, “Are you he who is to come, or shall we look for another?”
 And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see:
 the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.
 And blessed is he who takes no offense at me.”
 As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to behold? A reed shaken by the wind?
 Why then did you go out? To see a man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, those who wear soft raiment are in kings’ houses.
 Why then did you go out? To see a prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.
 This is he of whom it is written, `Behold, I send my messenger before thy face,
who shall prepare thy way before thee.’
 Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
 From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force.
 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John;
 and if you are willing to accept it, he is Eli’jah who is to come.
 He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
 “But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market places and calling to their playmates,
 `We piped to you, and you did not dance;
we wailed, and you did not mourn.’
 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, `He has a demon’;
 the Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, `Behold, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.”
 Then he began to upbraid the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent.
 “Woe to you, Chora’zin! woe to you, Beth-sa’ida! for if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.
 But I tell you, it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you.
 And you, Caper’na-um, will you be exalted to heaven? You shall be brought down to Hades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.
 But I tell you that it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you.”
 And he said to them, “Is a lamp brought in to be put under a bushel, or under a bed, and not on a stand?
 For there is nothing hid, except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret, except to come to light.
 If any man has ears to hear, let him hear.”
 And he said to them, “Take heed what you hear; the measure you give will be the measure you get, and still more will be given you.
 For to him who has will more be given; and from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away.”
The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America