Wednesday 28th February 2024
Fast free week
Today we commemorate:
St. Basil the Confessor, companion of St. Procopios at The Decapolis (750). Holy Hieromartyr Proterios, patriarch of Alexandria, and six companions (457). SS Marana, Cyanna (Kyra), and Domnica (Domnina), nuns, of Syria (c.450). New martyr Kyranna of Thessaloniki.
British Isles and Ireland:
St. Llibio of Anglesey (6th C). St. Madoc, bishop of Llanmadog (6th C). St. Sillan, abbot of Bangor (610). Holy Hieromartyr Herefrith, bishop of Lindsey (869).
2 Peter 3:1-18; Mark 13:24-31
Readings in bold type are those appointed by the Typikon for use at the Liturgy
2 Peter 3:1-18
This letter that I am now writing to you is the second, beloved, and in both I rouse your honest minds to recollect, to remember what the holy prophets foretold and what the Lord and Saviour commanded through your apostles. Understand first of all that scoffers will appear in the last days. They will follow their own inclinations and say, ‘Where is the promise of his coming? Since the beginning of creation our ancestors have died, and everything has remained the same.’ But they choose to ignore that long ago it was from water that the heavens and the earth came into being, by water coming together at the word of God, and that the then world was deluged and destroyed by water, and that by his word the present heavens and the earth are reserved for fire, kept for the Day of Judgement and for the destruction of the ungodly. Now do not let this one thing pass you by, beloved, that a single day for the Lord is like a thousand years and a thousand years like a single day. The Lord is not slow with the promise, as some judge slowness, but is patient with us, not wanting any to be lost but for all to come to repentance. And the day of the Lord will come like a thief in a night in which the heavens will pass away with a great roar. The elements, fiercely heated, will melt, and the earth and what is in it will be utterly consumed. Since everything is to be destroyed, what kind of people must you be but those of holy behaviour and piety, those who expect and eagerly await the coming of the Day of God on which the blazing heavens will be destroyed and the elements, fiercely heated, will melt? We wait in accordance with his promise for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness resides. For this reason, as you wait for these things, beloved, make every effort to be found spotless and blameless by him, and at peace. And regard the patience of our Lord as salvation in the way that our beloved brother Paul has also written to you with the wisdom given to him when he speaks about these things, as he does in all his letters. Some of the things in them are hard to understand and the ignorant and unstable twist them to their own destruction, as they do with other Scriptures. You then, beloved, are forewarned. Be on your guard so that you are not led astray by the error of those without conscience and fall from your own firm position, but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to whom be glory, both now and to the everlasting Day. Amen.
The Lord said … ‘In the days after that anguish the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light, the stars will fall from heaven and the powers that are in the heavens will be toppled, and then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. He will then send out his angels to gather his chosen ones from the four winds, from the furthest reaches of earth to the furthest reaches of heaven. From the fig tree learn from the parable. As soon as the branch becomes tender and is putting out leaves, then you know that summer is near. In the same way, as soon as you see these things happening you will know that it is near, at the door. Truly I tell you that this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.’