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JESUS TESTIFIES TO THE GREATNESS OF JOHN THE BAPTIST.
men were come unto Him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us w to. Thee, saying, Art Thou He that should come? or look we for anothu'! And in that same hour He cured many of their infirmities and plagues, and of evil spirits ; and unto many that were blind He gave sight. Then Jesus answering said unio them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard ; how that the blind receive their sight, and the iame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up. and the poor have the Gospel preached to them. And blessed is he whosoever shall not be offended in Me.
And when the messengers of John were departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into tle wilderness to see ? A reed shaken with the wind ? But what went ye out for to see ? A man clothed in soft raiment ? behold, they that wear soft clothing, they which are gorgeously apparelled, and live delicately, are in king's courts. But what went ye out for to see? A prophet! yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send My messenger before Thy face, which shall prepare Thy way before Thee. Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater prophet than John the Baptist : notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
And all the people that heard Him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptised with the baptism of John. But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not bartised of him. And the Lord said, Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation ? and to what are they like? They are like unto children sitting in the market-place, and calliug one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced : we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept. For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine ; and ye say, He hath a devil. The Son of man is come eating and drinking ; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a wine-bibber, a friend of publicans and sinners ! But wisdom is justified of all her children.
Then began He to upbraid the cities wherein most of His mighty works were done, because they repented not: Woe unto thee, Chorazin!
JESU'S ANOINTED BY A WOMAN IN THE HOUSE OF SIMON.
woe unto thee, Bethsaida ! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, hal been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the inighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for thee.
At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast hid these t.ings from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Thy sight. All things are delivered unto Me of My Father : and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father ; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Ilim.
Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.
31.-A woman anoints Jesus' feet, and
a Demoniac is healed.
ST Matr. 12. 22-50 ; ST MARK 3. 19-35 ; ST LUKE 7. 36-50, 8. 1-3.
Nain-Capernaum. And one of the Pharisees desired Him that He would eat with him. And He went into the Pharisee's house, and sat down to meat.
And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, and stood at His feet behind Him weeping, and began to wash His feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed His feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee which had bidden Him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if He were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth Him : for she is a siuner. And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
A MAN, DEVIL-POSSESSED AND BLIND AND DUMB, HEALED.
There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And He said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
And He turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest Me no water for My feet : but she hath washed My feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest Me no kiss : but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss My feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman bath anointed My feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven ; for she loved much : but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
And He said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven. And they that sat at meat with Him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also ? And He said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee ; go in peace.
And it came to pass afterward, that He went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God : and the twelve were with Him, and certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils, and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod's steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto Him of their substance. And they went into an house.
And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. And when His friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on Him : for they said, He is beside Himself.
Then was brought unto Him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and He healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the Son of David ?
But when the Pharisees and the Scribes which came down from Jerusalem heard it, they said, He hath Beelzebub, and this fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils. And Jesus knew their thoughts, and He called them unto Him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand, and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand : and if Satan
SIN OF BLASPHEMY AGAINST THE HOLY GHOST.
cast out Satan, he is divided against himself ; how shall then his kingdom stand ? he cannot stand, but hath an end. And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man ? and then he will spoil his house. He that is not with Me is against Me; and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme : but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall nou be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him : but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come, but is in danger of eternal damnation : because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.
Either make the tree good, and his fruit good ; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt : for the tree is known by his fruit. () generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things ? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things : and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.
Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from Thee.
But He answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign, and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas : for as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly ; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas ; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon ; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.
When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return
JESUS TEACHES IN PARABLES BY THE SEA-SIDE.
into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there : and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.
While He yet talked to the people, behold, His mother and His brethren stood without, desiring to speak with Him. And the multitude sat about Him. Then one said unto Him, Behold, Thy mother and Thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with Thee. But He answered and said unto him that told Him, Who is My mother ? and who are My brethren ? And He looked round about on them which sat about Him, and He stretched forth His hand toward His disciples, and said, Behold My mother and My brethren ! for whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother. * Each of the foregoing 31 Sections could be used as a Gospel Reading
for the day of month corresponding to its number.
DAILY GOSPEL READINGS FOR A SECOND MONTH.
1.-Parables of Sower, Tares, &c. ST MATT. 13. 1-17, 24-35 ; ST MARK 4. 1-9, 26-34 ; Sr LUKE 8. 4-8.
Sea of Galilee. The same day went Jesus out of the house, and He began again to teach by the sea-side. And great multitudes were gathered together, and were come to Him out of every city, so that He entered into a ship, and sat in the sea ; and the whole multitude was by the sea on the land. And He taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in His doctrine, Hearken : Behold, there went out a sower to sow his seed. And it came to pass, as he sowed, some seeds fell by the wayside, and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air came and devoured them up. Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth : and forth with they sprung up, because they had no deep