Evening Prayer Readings
St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist (Ember Day)
The First Lesson
The Second Lesson
An Independent Traditional 1928 BCP Ministry
THE heavens declare the glory of God; * and the firmament showeth his handy-work.
One day telleth another; * and one night certifieth another.
There is neither speech nor language; * but their voices are heard among them.
Their sound is gone out into all lands; * and their words into the ends of the world.
In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun; * which cometh forth as a bridegroom out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a giant to run his course.
It goeth forth from the uttermost part of the heaven, and runneth about unto the end of it again; * and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.
The law of the LORD is an undefiled law, converting the soul; * the testimony of the LORD is sure, and giveth wisdom unto the simple.
The statutes of the LORD are right, and rejoice the heart; * the commandment of the LORD is pure, and giveth light unto the eyes.
The fear of the LORD is clean, and endureth forever; * the judgments of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether.
More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold; * sweeter also than honey, and the honeycomb.
Moreover, by them is thy servant taught; * and in keeping of them there is great reward.
Who can tell how oft he offendeth? * O cleanse thou me from my secret faults.
Keep thy servant also from presumptuous sins, lest they get the dominion over me; * so shall I be undefiled, and innocent from the great offence.
Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be alway acceptable in thy sight, * O LORD, my strength and my redeemer.
BLESSED is the man that feareth the LORD; * he hath great delight in his commandments.
His seed shall be mighty upon earth; * the generation of the faithful shall be blessed.
Riches and plenteousness shall be in his house; * and his righteousness endureth for ever.
Unto the godly there ariseth up light in the darkness; * he is merciful, loving, and righteous.
A good man is merciful, and lendeth; * and will guide his words with discretion.
For he shall never be moved: * and the righteous shall be had in everlasting remembrance.
He will not be afraid of any evil tidings; * for his heart standeth fast, and believeth in the LORD.
His heart is stablished, and will not shrink, * until he see his desire upon his enemies.
He hath dispersed abroad, and given to the poor, * and his righteousness remaineth for ever; his horn shall be exalted with honour.
The ungodly shall see it, and it shall grieve him; * he shall gnash with his teeth, and consume away; the desire of the ungodly shall perish.
But where shall wisdom be found? and where is the place of understanding? Man knoweth not the price thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living. The depth saith, It is not in me: and the sea saith, It is not with me. It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof. It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the precious onyx, or the sapphire. The gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold. No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls: for the price of wisdom is above rubies. The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it, neither shall it be valued with pure gold. Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding? Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living, and kept close from the fowls of the air. Destruction and death say, We have heard the fame thereof with our ears. God understandeth the way thereof, and he knoweth the place thereof. For he looketh to the ends of the earth, and seeth under the whole heaven; To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure. When he made a decree for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder: Then did he see it, and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out. And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.
But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen. Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
O ALMIGHTY God, who by thy blessed Son didst call Matthew from the recipt of custom to be an Apostle and Evangelist; Grant us grace to forsake all covetous desires, and inordinate love of riches, and to follow the same thy Son Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
O ALMIGHTY God, who hast committed to the hands of men the ministry of reconciliation; We humbly beseech thee, by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, to put it into the hearts of many to offer themselves for this ministry; that thereby mankind may be drawn to thy blessed kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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