Matins readings for the Third Sunday after the Epiphany



Nocturn I (Galatians 1:1-14)

Reading 1: From the letter of St Paul to the Galatians - Paul, an apostle, not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead, And all the brethren who are with me, to the churches of Galatia. Grace be to you, and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present wicked world, according to the will of God and our Father: To whom is glory for ever and ever. Amen.

R. Domine, ne in ira tua arguas me, neque in furore tuo corripias me: * Miserere mei Domine, quoniam infirmus sum.
V. Timor et tremor venerunt super me, et contexerunt me tenebrae.
R. Miserere mei Domine, quoniam infirmus sum.
R. O Lord, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither chasten me in thine hot displeasure. * Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am weak.
V. Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and darkness hath overwhelmed me.
R. Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am weak.


Reading 2: I wonder that you are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ, unto another gospel. Which is not another, only there are some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.  But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema.

R. Deus, qui sedes super thronum, et judicas aequitatem, esto refugium pauperum in tribulatione: * Quia tu solus laborem et dolorem consideras.
V. Tibi enim derelictus est pauper, pupillo tu eris adjutor.
R. Quia tu solus laborem et dolorem consideras.
R. O God, Which satest in the throne judging right, be Thou a refuge for the poor, a refuge in times of trouble. * For Thou alone beholdest mischief and spite.
V. The poor leaveth himself unto thee; Thou wilt be the helper of the fatherless.
R. For Thou alone beholdest mischief and spite.

Reading 3: As we said before, so now I say again: If any one preach to you a gospel, besides that which you have received, let him be anathema. For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? If I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.

R. A dextris est mihi Dominus, ne commovear: * Propter hoc dilatatum est cor meum, et exsultavit lingua mea.
V. Dominus pars hereditatis meae, et calicis mei.
R. Propter hoc dilatatum est cor meum, et exsultavit lingua mea.
R. The Lord is at my right hand, I shall never be moved. * Therefore my heart is glad, and my tongue rejoiceth.
V. The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance, and of my cup.
R. Therefore my heart is glad, and my tongue rejoiceth.

Reading 4:  For I give you to understand, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man.  For neither did I receive it of man, nor did I learn it; but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. For you have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews' religion: how that, beyond measure, I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it. And I made progress in the Jews' religion above many of my equals in my own nation, being more abundantly zealous for the traditions of my fathers.

R. Custodi me Domine ut pupillam oculi * Sub umbra alarum tuarum protege me
V. Mirifica misericordias tuas qui salvos facis sperantes in te
R. Sub umbra alarum tuarum protege me
V. Gloria Patri..
R. Sub umbra alarum tuarum protege me
R: Keep me, as the apple of thy eye * Protect me under the shadow of thy wings
V: Shew forth thy wonderful mercies; thou who savest them that trust in thee
R: Protect me under the shadow of thy wings
V: Glory be...
R: Protect me under the shadow of thy wings


Nocturn II 

Reading 5: Exposition of St Augustine on the Letter to the Galatians - The reason of the Apostle's writing to the Galatians was this that they might understand that the grace of God had worked in them that they were no longer under the law. For when the grace of the Gospel was preached to them, there had not been wanting to them some of them of the circumcision, Christians indeed in name, but who had not yet apprehended that great benefit of grace, and desiring still to be bound with burdens of the law burdens which the Lord God had laid, not upon such as serve righteousness, but upon such as serve sin, laying, that is to say, upon the unrighteous a righteous law, whereby their unrighteousness was made manifest, not taken away. For there is not anything which taketh away sin, save only the grace of faith which worketh by love.

R. Notas mihi fecisti Domine vias vitae: * Adimplebis me laetitia cum vultu tuo: delectationes in dextera tua usque in finem.
V. Tu es qui restitues hereditatem meam mihi.
R. Adimplebis me laetitia cum vultu tuo: delectationes in dextera tua usque in finem.
R. O Lord, Thou hast shown me the path of life. * Thou shalt fill me with joy in thy presence, at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
V. Thou art He That shalt restore mine inheritance unto me.
R. Thou shalt fill me with joy in thy presence, at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

Reading 6: The men of the circumcision would have the Galatians, who were under grace, to be under the burdens of the law, persuading them that the Gospel profited them nothing, unless they should be circumcised, and take on them the other outward observances of the Jews' religion.

R. Diligam te Domine virtus mea: Dominus firmamentum meum, * Et refugium meum
V. Liberator meus, Deus meus, adjutor meus.
R. Et refugium meum
R. I will love thee, O Lord, my strength; the Lord is my rock * And my fortress.
V. My Deliverer, my God, mine Helper.
R. And my fortress.

Reading 7: Whence the Galatians began to have doubts of the Apostle Paul, by whom the Gospel had been preached to them, as one that held not the doctrine of the other Apostles, who compelled the Gentiles to come under the law.

R. Domini est terra, et plenitudo ejus: * Orbis terrarum, et universi qui habitant in eo
V. Ipse super maria fundavit eam, et super flumina praeparavit illam.
R. Orbis terrarum, et universi qui habitant in eo
R. The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof * The world, and they that dwell therein.
V. For He hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.
R. The world, and they that dwell therein.

Reading 8: The same question is discussed in the Epistle to the Romans, but with this difference in that case the Apostle putteth an end to the discussion, and stilleth the strife which had arisen between the Jewish and the Gentile converts, in consequence of the Jews holding that they had earned the knowledge of the Gospel as a reward for their observance of the law, and grudging the same knowledge to the uncircumcised, as to men who had done nothing to deserve it; and the Gentiles, on the contrary, maintaining that they were superior to the Jews, in that they were not the murderers of the Lord. Now, in this Epistle to the Galatians, the Apostle addresseth himself to those who were troubled by the authority claimed by them who were of the circumcision, and sought to bring into subjection to the law them who were of the uncircumcision.

R: Vias tuas, Domine, demonstra mihi, et semitas tuas edoce me. Dirige me in veritate tua, et doce me, * Quia tu es Deus salvator meus, et te sustinui tota die.
V. Delicta juventutis meæ, et ignorantias meas, ne memineris, Domine.
R: Quia tu es Deus salvator meus, et te sustinui tota die.
V. Gloria Patri
R. Quia tu es Deus salvator meus, et te sustinui tota die.
R: Shew, O Lord, thy ways to me, and teach me thy paths.Direct me in thy truth, and teach me; * For thou art God my Saviour; and on thee have I waited all the day long.
V: The sins of my youth and my ignorances do not remember, O Lord.
R: For thou art God my Saviour; and on thee have I waited all the day long.
V. Glory be...
R: For thou art God my Saviour; and on thee have I waited all the day long.

Nocturn III: 

Reading 9: From the holy Gospel according to Matthew - In that time when Jesus was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him: And behold a leper came and adored him. And so on.

Homily of St Jerome - "When the Lord was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him. They were not able to follow Him when He went up. And first there came a leper. This poor creature's disease had prevented him from hearing the Saviour's long sermon on the Mount. Let it be noted that he is the first person specially named as being healed. The second was the Centurion's servant; the third was Peter's wife's mother, who was sick of a fever at Capernaum; the fourth were they who were brought unto Christ as being troubled with evil spirits, from whom He by His word cast out the evil spirits, at the same time that He healed all that were sick.

R. Ad te Domine levavi animam meam: * Deus meus in te confido, non erubescam.
V. Custodi animam meam, et eripe me.
R. Deus meus in te confido, non erubescam.
R. Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.* O my God, I trust in thee, let me not be ashamed.
V. O keep my soul and deliver me.
R. O my God, I trust in thee, let me not be ashamed.

Reading 10: And, behold, there came a leper, and worshipped Him, saying Properly after preaching and doctrine cometh occasion for a sign, that the power of the miracle might confirm in the hearers the truth of the teaching that had gone before. Lord, if Thou wilt, Thou canst make me clean. He that prayeth the Lord to have the will, doubteth not but that He hath the power.

R: Afflicti pro peccatis nostris, quotidie cum lacrimis, expectamus finem nostrum;
dolor cordis nostri ascendat ad te, Domine, *
Ut eruas nos a malis, quae innovantur in nobis.
V: Domine, Deus Israel, exaudi preces nostras,
auribus precipe dolorem cordis nostri.
R: Ut eruas nos a malis, quae innovantur in nobis.
R: You have afflicted us for our sins, every day we expect our end with tears; let the sorrows of our heart come before you O Lord * That you may deliver us from the evils that have come upon us
V: O Lord God of Israel, hear our prayers, hearken unto the sorrows of our heart
R: That you may deliver us from the ills that are come upon us

Reading 11: And Jesus put forth His hand, and touched him, saying I will; be thou clean. As soon as the Lord put forth His Hand the leprosy departed. Let us remark how lowly and unbragging is the Lord's language. The leper had said, If Thou wilt; the Lord answereth, I will. The leper, Thou canst make me clean, the Lord, Be thou clean. Most Latin readers, misled by the identity of form in that language between the Present Infinitive Active and the Second Person Singular Present Imperative Passive of the Verb, read Christ's answer as if it were, I will to make thee clean. This is wrong. The sentences are separate. First cometh the expression of volition, I will, then the command, Be thou clean.

R. Peccata mea Domine sicut sagittae infixa sunt in me, sed antequam vulnera generent in me * Sana me Domine medicamento poenitentiae, Deus
V. Quoniam iniquitatem meam cognosco, et delictum meum contra me est semper, qui tibi soli peccavi
R. Sana me Domine medicamento poenitentiae, Deus
R. My sins, O Lord, are fixed in me, like arrows, but before they caused wounds in me,  * Heal me, O God, with the medicine of repentance.
V. For I know my iniquity, * and my sin is always before me.
R. Heal me, O God, with the medicine of repentance.

Reading 12: And Jesus saith unto him See thou tell no man. What need was there to tell what his body showed? But go thy way, show thyself to the Priest. There were divers reasons why Christ should send him to the Priest. First, for humility's sake, that He might show reverence to God's Priest. Then there was a command in the law that they that were cleansed of leprosy should make an offering to the Priests. Moreover, that, when the Priests saw the leper cleansed, they might either believe in the Saviour, or refuse to believe; if they believed, that they might be saved, and, if they believed not, that they might have no excuse. Lastly, that He might give no ground for the accusation that was so often brought against Him, that He was unobservant of the law."

R. Duo Seraphim clamabant alter ad alterum: * Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth: * Plena est omnis terra gloria ejus.
V. Tres sunt qui testimonium dant in caelo, Pater, Verbum, et Spiritus Sanctus: et hi tres unum sunt.
R. Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth
V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
R. Plena est omnis terra gloria ejus.
R. One Seraph cried unto another * Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God of hosts * The whole earth is full of His glory.
V. There are Three That bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost and these Three are One.
R. Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God of hosts
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
R. The whole earth is full of His glory.

Gospel: Matthew 8:1-13

And when he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him:  And behold a leper came and adored him, saying: Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.  And Jesus stretching forth his hand, touched him, saying: I will, be thou made clean. And forthwith his leprosy was cleansed. And Jesus saith to him: See thou tell no man: but go, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift which Moses commanded for a testimony unto them.

And when he had entered into Capharnaum, there came to him a centurion, beseeching him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, and is grieviously tormented.  And Jesus saith to him: I will come and heal him.  And the centurion making answer, said: Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldst enter under my roof: but only say the word, and my servant shall be healed.  For I also am a man subject to authority, having under me soldiers; and I say to this, Go, and he goeth, and to another, Come, and he cometh, and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.

And Jesus hearing this, marvelled; and said to them that followed him: Amen I say to you, I have not found so great faith in Israel.  And I say to you that many shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven: But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  And Jesus said to the centurion: Go, and as thou hast believed, so be it done to thee. And the servant was healed at the same hour.

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