Monday, December 20, 2021
St. Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch,
St. Addai, Bishop of Edessa,
St. Maruthas, Bishop of Niphigerd,
St. Theopompas, Bishop of Nicomedia,
St. Theonas the Magician, martyr at Nicomedia,
Sts. Bassus, Eusebe, Eutyche, and Basilides, soldiers and martyrs at Nicomedia
I Corinthians 4:9-16
 Then the righteous man will stand with great confidence
in the presence of those who have afflicted him,
and those who make light of his labors.
 When they see him, they will be shaken with dreadful fear,
and they will be amazed at his unexpected salvation.
 They will speak to one another in repentance,
and in anguish of spirit they will groan, and say,
 “This is the man whom we once held in derision
and made a byword of reproach — we fools!
We thought that his life was madness
and that his end was without honor.
 Why has he been numbered among the sons of God?
And why is his lot among the saints?
 So it was we who strayed from the way of truth,
and the light of righteousness did not shine on us,
and the sun did not rise upon us.
 We took our fill of the paths of lawlessness and destruction,
and we journeyed through trackless deserts,
but the way of the Lord we have not known.
 What has our arrogance profited us?
And what good has our boasted wealth brought us?
 Thus says the LORD:
“Stand by the roads, and look,
and ask for the ancient paths,
where the good way is; and walk in it,
and find rest for your souls.
But they said, `We will not walk in it.’
 I set watchmen over you, saying,
`Give heed to the sound of the trumpet!’
But they said, `We will not give heed.’
 Therefore hear, O nations,
and know, O congregation, what will happen to them.
 Hear, O earth; behold, I am bringing evil upon this people,
the fruit of their devices,
because they have not given heed to my words;
and as for my law, they have rejected it.
 To what purpose does frankincense come to me from Sheba,
or sweet cane from a distant land?
Your burnt offerings are not acceptable,
nor your sacrifices pleasing to me.
 Therefore thus says the LORD:
`Behold, I will lay before this people
stumbling blocks against which they shall stumble;
fathers and sons together,
neighbor and friend shall perish.’”
I Corinthians 4:9-16
 For I think that God has exhibited us apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to men.
 We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honor, but we in disrepute.
 To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are ill-clad and buffeted and homeless,
 and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure;
 when slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become, and are now, as the refuse of the world, the offscouring of all things.
 I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children.
 For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
 I urge you, then, be imitators of me.
 But they did not understand the saying, and they were afraid to ask him.
 And they came to Caper’na-um; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you discussing on the way?”
 But they were silent; for on the way they had discussed with one another who was the greatest.
 And he sat down and called the twelve; and he said to them, “If any one would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.”
 And he took a child, and put him in the midst of them; and taking him in his arms, he said to them,
The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America