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June 23, 2017
Martyr Agrippina of Rome (c255)
Holy Martyrs Eustochios, Gaios, Probos, Lollios and Urban of Ancyra (4th)
Venerable Joseph, Anthony, and Ioannicius of Vologda
New Hieromartyrs Mitrophan, archbishop of Astrakhan, Leonty, bishop of Yenotayevsk, and those with them (1919)
Meeting of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God
Holy Righteous Artemios of Dvina Verkola (1545)
Friday of the 3rd week after Pentecost
Matt 10.32-36, 11.1
So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s foes will be those of his own household.
And when Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in their cities.
But it is not as though the word of God had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his descendants; but “Through Isaac shall your descendants be named.” This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are reckoned as descendants. For this is what the promise said, “About this time I will return and Sarah shall have a son.” And not only so, but also when Rebecca had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad, in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of his call, she was told, “The elder will serve the younger.” As it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.” What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So it depends not upon man’s will or exertion, but upon God’s mercy. For the scripture says to Pharaoh, “I have raised you up for the very purpose of showing my power in you, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth.” So then he has mercy upon whomever he wills, and he hardens the heart of whomever he wills. You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?”