Morning Prayer Readings
St. Stephen, Deacon and Martyr (of the Octave)
The First Lesson
The Second Lesson
An Independent Traditional 1928 BCP Ministry
O GIVE thanks unto the LORD, for he is gracious; * because his mercy endureth for ever.
Let Israel now confess that he is gracious, * and that his mercy endureth for ever.
Let the house of Aaron now confess, * that his mercy endureth for ever.
Yea, let them now that fear the LORD confess, * that his mercy endureth for ever.
I called upon the LORD in trouble; * and the LORD heard me at large.
The LORD is on my side; * I will not fear what man doeth unto me.
The LORD taketh my part with them that help me; * therefore shall I see my desire upon mine enemies.
It is better to trust in the LORD, * than to put any confidence in man.
It is better to trust in the LORD, * than to put any confidence in princes.
All nations compassed me round about; * but in the Name of the LORD will I destroy them.
They kept me in on every side, they kept me in, I say, on every side; * but in the Name of the LORD will I destroy them.
They came about me like bees, and are extinct even as the fire among the thorns; * for in the Name of the LORD I will destroy them.
Thou hast thrust sore at me, that I might fall; * but the LORD was my help.
The LORD is my strength, and my song; * and is become my salvation.
The voice of joy and health is in the dwellings of the righteous; * the right hand of the LORD bringeth mighty things to pass.
The right hand of the LORD hath the pre-eminence; * the right hand of the LORD bringeth mighty things to pass.
I shall not die, but live, * and declare the works of the LORD.
The LORD hath chastened and corrected me; * but he hath not given me over unto death.
Open me the gates of righteousness, * that I may go into them, and give thanks unto the LORD.
This is the gate of the LORD, * the righteous shall enter into it.
I will thank thee; for thou hast heard me, * and art become my salvation.
The same stone which the builders refused, * is become the head-stone in the corner.
This is the LORD'S doing, * and it is marvellous in our eyes.
This is the day which the LORD hath made; * we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Help me now, O LORD: * O LORD, send us now prosperity.
Blessed be he that cometh in the Name of the LORD: * we have wished you good luck, we that are of the house of the LORD.
God is the LORD, who hath showed us light: * bind the sacrifice with cords, yea, even unto the horns of the altar.
Thou art my God, and I will thank thee; * thou art my God, and I will praise thee.
O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is gracious, * and his mercy endureth for ever.
Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king hearkened unto them. And they left the house of the LORD God of their fathers, and served groves and idols: and wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem for this their trespass. Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again unto the LORD; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear. And the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, which stood above the people, and said unto them, Thus saith God, Why transgress ye the commandments of the LORD, that ye cannot prosper? because ye have forsaken the LORD, he hath also forsaken you. And they conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of the LORD. Thus Joash the king remembered not the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but slew his son. And when he died, he said, The LORD look upon it, and require it.
And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word. And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch: Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them. And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen. And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake. Then they suborned men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses, and against God. And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him to the council, And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law: For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered us. And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.
GRANT, O Lord, that, in all our sufferings here upon earth for the testimony of thy truth, we may stedfastly look up to heaven, and by faith behold the glory that shall be revealed; and, being filled with the Holy Ghost, may learn to love and bless our persecutors by the example of thy first Martyr Saint Stephen, who prayed for his murderers to thee, O blessed Jesus, who standest at the right hand of God to succour all those who suffer for thee, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.
ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us thy only-begotten Son to take our nature upon him, and as at this time to be born of a pure virgin; Grant that we being regenerate, and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit; through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
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