Blessed art Thou, O Lord, the God of our Fathers. For Thou art just in all Thou hast done to us.
THE EPISTLE (For the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost)
The Lord is my strength and my song. With chastisement hath the Lord chastened me.
The Reading from the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians. (9:2-12)
Brethren, the seal of my apostleship are you in the Lord. My defense to those who would examine me is this: Do we have no authority regarding what to eat and what to drink? Do we have no authority to lead about a wife, who is a sister, as the rest of the apostles, even as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas? Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no authority to refrain from working? Which soldier ever served at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat the fruit thereof? Or who shepherds a flock and does not eat from the milk of the flock? Do I speak of these things according to human nature? Or does not the Law say the same also? For it is written in the Law of Moses: “Thou shalt not muzzle an ox which treads out the grain.” Is it for oxen that God cares, or does He say it altogether for our sakes? Indeed, for our sakes it was written: because he who plows ought to plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope, so that the same might partake in hope. If we have sown in you spiritual things, is it a great matter if we should reap your carnal things? If others are partakers of this authority over you, are we not even more? Nevertheless, we have not made use of this authority, but we endure all things, in order that we may cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ.
THE GOSPEL (For the Eleventh Sunday of Matthew)
The Reading from the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew. (18:23-35)
The Lord spoke this parable: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his servants. When he began the reckoning, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents; and as he could not pay, his lord ordered him to be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and payment to be made. So the servant fell on his knees, imploring him, ‘Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ And out of pity for him the lord of that servant released him and forgave him the debt. But that same servant, as he went out, came upon one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and seizing him by the throat he said, ‘Pay what you owe.’ So his fellow servant fell down and besought him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ He refused and went and put him in prison until he should pay the debt. When his fellow servants saw what had taken place, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their lord all that had taken place. Then his lord summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you besought me; and should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’ And in anger his lord delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt. So also My heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”
Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous; praise is meet for the upright. Alleluia.