Occurring Scripture for the
Hour of Matins
A reading from from the second book of Kings
2 Kings 1:1-4
Now it came to pass, after Saul was
dead, that David returned from the slaughter of the Amalecites, and stayed
two days in Siceleg. And on the third day, there appeared a man who came out
of Saul's camp, with his garments rent, and dust strewed on his head: and
when he came to David, he fell upon his face, and adored. And David
said to him: "Where have you come from?" And he said to him: "I have fled
out of the camp of Israel." And David said unto him: "What has come to
pass? tell me." He said: "The people have fled from the battle, and
many of the people have fallen and are dead: moreover Saul and Jonathan his
son are slain."
2 Kings 1:5-10
And David said to the young man that
told him: "How do you know that Saul and Jonathan his son, are dead?"
And the young man that told him, said: "I came by chance upon mount Gelboe,
and Saul leaned upon his spear: and the chariots and horsemen drew nigh unto
him, and looking behind him, and seeing me, he called me. And I
answered, 'Here am I'. And he said to me: 'Who are you?' And I said to
him: 'I am an Amalecite.' And he said to me: 'Stand over me, and kill
me: for anguish is come upon me, and as yet my whole life is in me.'
So standing over him, I killed him: for I knew that he could not live after
the fall: and I took the diadem that was on his head, and the bracelet that
was on his arm and have brought them hither to thee, my lord."
2 Kings 1:11-15
Then David took hold of his garments
and rent them, and so did all the men that were with him. And they
mourned, and wept, and fasted until evening for Saul, and for Jonathan his
son, and for the people of the Lord, and for the house of Israel, because
they had fallen by the sword. And David said to the young man that
told him: "Where are you from?" He answered: "I am the son of a stranger of
Amalee." David said to him: "Why did you not fear to put out your hand
to kill the Lord's anointed?" And David calling one of his servants,
said: "Go near and that man down." And he struck him so that he died.
From the Book of Moral (Reflections upon Job), written
by Pope St Gregory the Great
Book iv chapters 3, 4
Thus was it that David, who rewarded no
evil to them that did evil to him (cf. Psalm 7:5), when Saul and
Jonathan had fallen in battle, cursed the mountains of Gilboa, saying "Ye
mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain upon
you, nor fields of offerings; for there the shield of the mighty is vilely
cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.
Why was it that Jeremiah, when he saw that his preaching was thrown away
upon his hearers, cursed and said "Cursed be the man who brought tidings to
my father, saying, A man-child is born unto thee" (Jeremias 20:15)?
What had the mountains of Gilboa to do
with the death of Saul, that they should be condemned to have dew fall on
them no more, neither rain, but should wither away, barren of the green
glory of the springtime? But this word Gilboa signified bubbling fountain,
and the death of Saul the Anointed of God is a type of the death of our
Anointed Mediator. Thus we find in the mountains of Gilboa a fit image of
the proud hearts of the Jews, which had their source in earthly desires, and
took part in the death of the Anointed Savior. And since among them their
Anointed Monarch met His death, the dew of grace is upon them no more.
And well is it said of them "Let there
be upon you no fields of offerings." The proud minds of the Hebrews bear yet
no offering. Since the coming of their Redeemer, the most part of them
remain still without belief in Him, and refuse to follow the promise of
their ancient faith. Holy Church has borne for her first-born, holy unto the
Lord, a multitude of the Gentiles, and will, but in the end of the world,
embrace such Jews as she then shall find, and present them as the last
gatherings of her harvest.
The continuation of the Holy Gospel according to
At that time, Jesus said unto His disciples: "unless your justice abound more than that of the
scribes and Pharisees, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
You have heard that it was said to them of old: 'Thou shalt not kill.' And
whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment. But I say to
you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, shall be in danger of the
judgment. And whoever says to his brother, 'Raca', shall be in danger
of the council. And whoever says, 'You Fool,' shall be in danger of
hell fire. If therefore you offer your gift at the altar, and there
you remember that your brother has any thing against thee; Leave your offering before the altar, and go first to be reconciled to your brother:
and then returning you shall offer your gift."
A homily of Saint Augustine, Bishop. Book I on the Lord's
Sermon on the Mount, ch. 9.
"Thou shalt not kill," is the righteousness of
the Pharisees; "You shall not be angry with your brother without cause," is the righteousness of those
who will enter the kingdom of heaven.
The least therefore is: "Thou shalt not kill, and whoever shall break this
commandment, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven" (cf.
But whoever shall do it, and not kill, he is not therefore great, and sure
of the kingdom of heaven; even though, he has risen a step; but he will have
gotten farther, if he will not be angry with his brother without a cause—if
he doesn't go to anger without cause, he will be the farther off from manslaughter. Therefore, He
Who teaches us that we are not to be angry without a cause, destroys not the
law, "Thou shalt not kill," but rather fulfills and increases it, making us
not only to be free of the sin of outward killing, but also clean of anger
On sins of this kind there are diverse steps.
First, there is the swelling feeling of anger. When this feeling appears
in a man's heart, he keeps it. Then the inward disturbance brings forth
words of indignation, not themselves meaning anything, but showing the troubled
emotions of he who is provoked. And this is something more than anger kept
covered under silence. Next, this audible outburst of indignation may
contain direct and open reviling of he who has aroused it. And it cannot be doubted that
this is something more than an empty cry of anger.
Understand the three degrees of guilt open
respectively to the judgment, to the council, and to hellfire. In the
judgment, there is still place for defense. In the council, although this also
is in a sense a judgment, we may yet suppose this distinction from the
judgment proper, that the council pronounces sentence, not as the result of
a trial where the accused is present, but as the result of a consultation
among the judges, to what punishment he is to be sentenced of whom it is
already established that he is guilty. When we get to hell-fire, there remains no longer any doubt about condemnation, as in the judgment, and no
longer any doubt about sentence, as in the council. In hellfire the
condemnation and the pain of him that is condemned are both certain.
Let us pray:
O God, who hast prepared for those who love Thee such good
things as eye has not seen; pour into our hearts such love towards Thee,
that we, loving Thee above all things, may obtain Thy promises, which exceed
all that we can desire. Through our Lord Jesus Christ.
From the Second Book of Kings
And after these things David consulted the Lord, saying:
I go up into one of the cities of Juda?" And the Lord said to him: "Go up." And
David said: "Whither shall I go up?" And He answered him: "Into Hebron." So
David went up, and his two wives, Achinoam the Jezrahelitess, and Abigail
the wife of Nabal of Carmel: And the men also that were with him, David
brought up every man with his household: and they abode in the towns of
Hebron. And the men of Juda came, and anointed David there, to be king
over the house of Juda.
2 Kings 2:5-7
And it was told David, that the
men of Jabes Galaad had buried Saul. David therefore sent messengers to
the men of Jabes Galaad, and said to them: "Blessed be you to the Lord, who
have shown this mercy to your master Saul, and have buried him. And now
the Lord surely will render you mercy and truth, and I also will, requite
you for this good turn, because you have done this thing. Let your hands
be strengthened, and be you men of valor: for although your master Saul be
dead, yet the house of Juda has anointed me to be their king."
2 Kings 2:8-11
But Abner the son of Ner,
general of Saul's army, took Isboseth the son of Saul, and led him about
through the camp. And made him king over Galaad, and, over Gessuri, and
over Jezrahel, and over Ephraim, and over Benjamin, and over all Israel. Isboseth the son of Saul was forty years old when he began to reign over,
Israel, and he reigned two years: and only the house of Juda followed David. And the number of the days that David
lived, reigning in Hebron over the
house of Juda, was seven years and six months.
A Reading from the Second Book of Kings
Now while there was war between the house of Saul and the
house of David, Abner the son of Ner ruled the house of Saul. And Saul had
a concubine named Respha, the daughter of Aia. And Isboseth said to Abner:
"Why did you go in to my father's concubine?" And he was exceedingly angry
for the words of Isboseth, and said: "Am I a dog's head against Juda
this day, who have shown mercy to the house of Saul your father, and to
his brethren and friends, and have not delivered you into the hands of
David, and have sought this day to charge me with a matter
concerning a woman?" May God do so to Abner, and more also, unless as
the Lord has sworn to David, so I do to him, that the kingdom be
the house of Saul, and the throne of David be set up over Israel, and over Juda from Dan to Bersabee.
2 Kings 3:12-16
Abner therefore sent
messengers to David for himself, saying: "Whose is the land?" and that they
should say: "Make a league with me, and my hand shall be with you: and I
will bring all Israel to you." And he said: "Very well: I will make a
league with you: but one thing I require of thee," saying: "You shall not
see my face before you bring Michol the daughter of Saul: and so you shall
come, and see me. And David sent messengers to Isboseth the son of Saul,
saying: "Restore my wife Michol, whom I espoused for a hundred foreskins of
the Philistines. And Isboseth sent, and took her from her
husband Phaltiel, the son of Lais. And her husband followed her, weeping
as far as Bahurim: and Abner said to him: "Go and return." And he returned.
2 Kings 3:17-21
Abner also spoke to the
ancients of Israel, saying: "Both yesterday and the day before you sought for
David that he might reign over you. Then do it now: because the Lord has
spoken to David, saying: "By the hand of my servant David I will save my
people Israel from the hands of the Philistines, and of all their enemies." And Abner spoke also to Benjamin.
And he went to tell David in Hebron all that seemed good to Israel, and to
the whole tribe of Benjamin. And he came to
David in Hebron with twenty men: and David made a feast for Abner, and his
men that came with him. And Abner said to David: "I will rise, that I
may gather all Israel unto you my lord the king, and may enter into a league
with you, and that you may reign over all your soul desires. Now when David
had sent Abner on his way, and he went in peace....
A Reading from the Second Book of Kings
2 Kings 4:5-8
And the sons of Remmon the Berothite,
Rechab and Baana coming, went into the house of Isboseth in the heat of the
day: and he was sleeping upon his bed at noon. And the doorkeeper of the
house, who was cleansing wheat, had fallen asleep. And they entered into
the house secretly taking ears of corn, and Rechab and Baana his brother
stabbed him in the groin, and fled away. For when they came into the
house, be was sleeping upon his bed in a parlor, and they struck him and
killed him: and taking away his head they went off by the way of the
wilderness, walking all night. And they brought the head of Isboseth to
David to Hebron: and they said to the king: "Behold the head of Isboseth the
son of Saul your enemy who sought your life: and the Lord has revenged my
lord the king this day of Saul, and of his seed."
2 Kings 4:9-12
But David answered Rechab, and
Baana his brother, the sons of Remmon the Berothite, and said to them: "As
the Lord lives, Who has delivered my soul out of all distress, the man
that told me, and said: 'Saul is dead,' who thought he brought good tidings, I
apprehended, and slew him in Siceleg, who should have been rewarded for his
news. How much more now when wicked men have slain an innocent man in his
own house, upon his bed, shall I not require his blood at your hand, and
take you away from the earth?" And David commanded his servants and they
slew them: and cutting off their hands and feet, hanged them up over the
pool in Hebron: but the head of Isboseth they took and buried in the
sepulchre of Abner in Hebron.
2 Kings 5:1-7
Then all the tribes of Israel
came to David in Hebron, saying: "Behold we are thy bone and thy flesh.
Moreover yesterday also and the day before, when Saul was king over us, you
were the one who did lead out and bring in Israel: and the Lord said to you:
'You shall feed my people Israel, and you shall be prince over Israel.'"
The ancients also of Israel came to the king to Hebron, and king David made
a league with them in Hebron before the Lord: and they anointed David to be
king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and
he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Juda seven years and
six months: and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty three years over all Israel
and Juda. And the king and all the men that were with him went to
Jerusalem to the Jebusites the inhabitants of the land: and they said to
David: "You shall not enter here unless you take away the blind and the
lame that say: 'David shall not come in hither.'" But David took the castle
of Sion, the same is the city of David.
A Reading from the Second Book of Kings
And David again gathered together all the chosen men of Israel,
thirty thousand. And David arose and went, with all the people that were
with him of the men of Juda to fetch the ark of God, upon which the name of
the Lord of hosts is invoked, who sitteth over it upon the cherubim. And
they laid the ark of God upon a new cart: and took it out of the house of Abinadab, who was in Gabaa: and Oza, and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drove
the new cart.
2 Kings 6:4-7
And when they had taken it out
of the house of Abinadab, who was in Gabaa, Ahio having care of the ark of
God went before the ark. But David and all Israel played before the Lord
on all manner of instruments made of wood, on harps and lutes and timbrels
and cornets and cymbals. And when they came to the floor of Nachon, Oza
put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it: because the oxen
kicked and made it lean aside. 7 And the indignation of the Lord was
enkindled against Oza, and he struck him for his rashness: and he died there
before the ark of God.
2 Kings 6:8-12
And David was grieved because the
Lord had struck Oza, and the name of that place was called: "The striking of Oza," to this day. And David was afraid of the Lord that day, saying:
shall the ark of the Lord come to me?" And he would not have the ark of
the Lord brought in to himself into the city of David: but he caused it to
be carried into the house of Obededom the Gethite. And the ark of the
Lord abode in the house of Obededom the Gethite three months: and the Lord
blessed Obededom, and all his household. And it was told king David, that
the Lord had blessed Obededom, and all that he had, because of the ark of
God. So David went, and brought away the ark of God out of the house of
Obededom into the city of David with joy. And there were with David seven
choirs, and calves for victims.
A Reading from the Second book of Kings
But it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came to
Nathan, saying: "Go, and say to my servant David: 'Thus says the Lord:
Shall you build me a house to dwell in? Whereas I have not dwelt in a
house from the day that I brought the children of Israel out of the land of
Egypt even to this day: but have walked in a tabernacle, and in a tent.'"
2 Kings 7:7-11
"In all the places that I have
gone through with all the children of Israel, did ever I speak a word to any
one of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel,
saying: 'Why have you not built me a house of cedar?' And now thus shall
you speak to My servant David: 'Thus says the Lord of hosts: as I took you
out of the pastures from following the sheep to be ruler over my people
Israel: And I have been with you wherever you have walked, and have
slain all your enemies before your face: and I have made you a great
man, like the great ones that are on the earth. And I
will appoint a place for My people Israel, and I will plant them, and they
shall dwell there, and shall be disturbed no more: neither shall the
children of iniquity afflict them any more as they did before. From the
day that I appointed judges over My people Israel: and I will give you rest
from all thy enemies. And the Lord foretells to you, that the Lord will
make you a house.'"
2 Kings 7:12-17
"And when your days are
fulfilled, and you shall sleep with your fathers, I will raise up your seed
after you, which shall proceed out of your body, and I will establish his
kingdom. He shall build a house to My name, and I will establish the
throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be to him a father, and he shall
be to Me a son: and if he commit any iniquity, I will correct him with the
rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men. But my mercy I
will not take away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I removed from
before My face. And your house shall be faithful, and your kingdom for
ever before you face, and your throne shall be firm forever." According to all
these words and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak to David.
A reading from the second book of Kings
2 Kings 11:1-4
And it came to pass at the return of the year, at the time
when kings go forth to war, that David sent Joab and his servants with him,
and all Israel, and they spoiled the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabba:
but David remained in Jerusalem. In the mean time it happened that David
arose from his bed after noon, and walked upon the roof of the king's house:
and he saw from the roof of his house a woman washing herself, over against
him: and the woman was very beautiful. And the king sent, and inquired who
the woman was. And it was told him, that she was Bethsabee the daughter of
Eliam, the wife of Urias the Hethite. And David sent messengers, and took
2 Kings 11:5-11
And she returned to her house
having conceived. And she sent and told David, and said: "I have conceived."
And David sent to Joab, saying: "Send me Urias the Hethite." And Joab sent
Urias to David. 7 And Urias came to David. And David asked how Joab did, and
the people, and how the war was carried on. And David said to Urias: "Go
into thy house, and wash thy feet." And Urias went out from the king's house,
and there went out after him a mess of meat from the king. But Urias
slept before the gate of the king's house, with the other servants of his
lord, and went not down to his own house. And it was told David by some that
said: "Urias went not to his house." And David said to Urias: "Did you not
come from your journey? why did you not go down to your house?" And Urias
said to David: "The ark of God and Israel and Juda dwell in tents, and my
lord Joab and the servants of my lord abide upon the face of the earth: and
shall I go into my house, to eat and to drink, and to sleep with my wife? By
thy welfare and by the welfare of thy soul I will not do this thing."
On feasts of the Saints or in the
Saturday Office of the Blessed Virgin the second and third lessons are
concatenated; the third then being of the feast.
2 Kings 11:12-17
Then David said to Urias:
"Stay here today, and tomorrow I will send you away." Urias stayed in
Jerusalem that day and the next. And David called him to eat and to
drink before him, and he made him drunk: and he went out in the evening, and
slept on his couch with the servants of his lord, and went not down into his
house. And when the morning had come, David wrote a letter to Joab: and
sent it by the hand of Urias, Writing in the letter: "Set Urias in the
front of the battle, where the fight is strongest: and leave him, that he
may be wounded and die." Wherefore as Joab was besieging the city, he put
Urias in the place where he knew the bravest men were. And the men coming
out of the city, fought against Joab, and there fell some of the people of
the servants of David, and Urias the Hethite was killed also.