Wednesday in Passion Week
Epistle • Leviticus 19:1, 2, 11-19, 25
Lesson from the Book of Leviticus.
[The law of God Whose word is stable.]
In those days the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to all the congregation of the children of Israel, and thou shalt say to them: I am the Lord your God. You shall not steal. You shall not lie, neither shall any man deceive his neighbor. Thou shalt not swear falsely by My Name, nor profane the Name of Thy God: I am the Lord. Thou shalt not calumniate thy neighbor, nor oppress him by violence. The wages of him that hath been hired by thee shall not abide with thee until the morning. Thou shalt not speak evil of the deaf, nor put a stumbling block before the blind; but thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, because I am the Lord.
Thou shalt not do that which is unjust, nor judge unjustly. Respect not the person of the poor, nor honor the countenance of the mighty. But judge thy neighbor according to justice. Thou shalt not be a detractor, nor a whisperer among the people. Thou shalt not stand against the blood of thy neighbor. I am the Lord. Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thy heart, but reprove him openly, lest thou incur sin through him. Seek not revenge, nor be mindful of the injury of thy citizens. Thou shalt love thy friend as thyself. I am the Lord. Keep ye My laws. For I am the Lord your God.
Gospel • John 10:22-38
Continuation of the holy Gospel according to St. John.
[Obstinacy of the Jews in rejecting Jesus. The Sanhedrin hated Our Lord and sought to stone Him. The Jews, rejecting the Pastor of their souls, are no longer His sheep, but the Gentiles, baptized or reconciled to God, at the Easter Feast, are the sheep who hear His voice and to whom He gives eternal life.]
At that time it was the Feast of the Dedication at Jerusalem: and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomons porch. The Jews therefore came round about Him, and said to Him: How long dost Thou hold our souls in suspense? If Thou be the Christ tell us plainly. Jesus answered them: I speak to you, and you believe not. The works that I do in the Name of My Father, they give testimony of Me: but you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep. My sheep hear My voice: and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give them life everlasting: and they shall not perish for ever, and no man shall pluck them out of My hand. That which My Father hath given Me is greater than all: and no one can snatch them out of the hand of My Father. I and the Father are one.
The Jews then took up stones to stone Him. Jesus answered them: Many good works I have showed you from My Father, for which of those works do you stone Me? The Jews answered Him: For a good work we stone Thee not, but for blasphemy: and because that Thou, being a man, makest Thyself God. Jesus answered them: Is it not written in your law: I said, You are gods? If he called them gods to whom the word of God was spoken, and the Scripture cannot be broken: do you say of Him Whom the Father hath sanctified and sent into the world: Thou blasphemest: because I said, I am the Son of God? If I do not the works of My Father, believe Me not. But if I do: though you will not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.