Wednesday in Holy Week
Introit: Philippians ii: 10, 8, 11
Immediately after the Kyrie, is said:
[P]Let us pray.
[D] Let us kneel.
Grant, we beseech Thee, O almighty God, that we who are continually afflicted by reason of our excesses, may be delivered through the passion of Thine only-begotten Son. Who with Thee and the Holy Ghost.
Lesson: Isaias lxii: 11; lxiii: 1-7
A reading from the Prophet Isaias:
Gradual: Psalm lxviii: 18, 2-3
Turn not away Thy face from Thy servant, for I am in tribulation: hear me quickly. v Save me, O God, for the waters have entered, even unto my soul. I stick fast in the mire of the deep, and there is no sure standing.
The priest turns to face the people, saying:
[P]The Lord be with you.
[C] And with thy spirit.
OGod, who willed that Thy Son should undergo for us the ignominy of the cross to deliver us from the power of the enemy: grant to us, Thy servants, that we may obtain the grace of His resurrection. Through the same our Lord.
Lesson: Isaias liii: 1-12
A reading from the Prophet Isaias:
Tract: Psalm ci: 2-5, 14
Hear, O Lord, my prayer, and let my cry come unto Thee. v. Turn not away Thy face from me. In the day of my tribulation, incline Thine ear to me. v. In what day soever I call upon Thee, quickly hear me. v. For my days have vanished like smoke, and my bones are burnt up as in an oven. v. I am smitten like the grass, and my heart is withered because I forgot to eat my bread. v. Thou shalt arise, O Lord, and have mercy on Sion, for the time has come to have mercy on it.
The Passion: Luke xxii: 1-71; xxiii: 1-53
The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to saint Luke.
And the day of the unleavened bread came, on which it was necessary that the pasch should be killed. And He sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and prepare for us the pasch, that we may eat." But they said, "Where dost Thou will us to prepare?" And He said to them, "Behold, as you go into the city, there shall you meet a man carrying a pitcher of water: follow him into the house he enters, and say to the master of the house, «The Master says to thee, Where is the guest chamber where I may eat the pasch with My disciples?» And he will show you a large dining room furnished; and there you are to prepare." And going, they found as He had said to them, and made ready the pasch.
And when the hour had come He sat down, and the twelve Apostles with Him. And He said to them, "I have greatly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you that I will eat of it no more, until it has been fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And having taken a cup, He gave thanks and said, "Take this and share it among you; for I say to you that I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God comes."
And having taken bread, He gave thanks and broke, and gave it to them, saying, "This is My body, which is being given for you; do this in remembrance of Me." In like manner, He took also the cup after the supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which shall be shed for you.
"But behold, the hand of him who betrays Me is with Me on the table. For the Son of Man indeed goes His way, as it has been determined; yet woe to the man by whom He will be betrayed." And they began to inquire among themselves which of them it might be that was about to do this.
Now there arose also a dispute among them, which of them was reputed to be the greatest. But He said to them, "The kings of the gentiles lord it over them, and they who exercise authority over them are called «benefactors.» But not so with you. On the contrary, let him who is greatest among you become as the youngest, and him who is the chief, as the servant. For which is the greater, he who reclines at table, or he who serves? Is it not he who reclines? But I am in your midst as he who serves. But you are they who have continued with Me in My trials. And I appoint to you a kingdom, even as My Father has appointed to Me, that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom; and you shall sit upon thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel."
And the Lord said, "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith may not fail; and do thou, when once thou hast turned again, strengthen thy brethren." But he said to Him, "Lord with Thee I am ready to go, both to prison and to death!" But He said, "When I sent you forth without purse or wallet or sandals, did you lack anything?" And they said, "Nothing." The He said to them, "But now let him who has a purse take it, and likewise a wallet; and let him who has no sword sell his tunic and buy one. For I say to you that this which is written must yet be fulfilled in Me, And He was reckoned among the wicked. For that which concerns Me is at its end." And they said, "Lord, here are two swords." And He said to them, "Enough."
And He came out and went, according to His custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples also followed him. But when He was at the place, He said to them, "Pray that you may not enter into temptation." And He Himself withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and kneeling down, He began to pray, saying, "Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will but Thine be done." And there appeared to Him an angel from heaven to strengthen Him. And falling into an agony, He prayed all the more earnestly.
And His sweat became as drops of blood running down upon the ground. And rising from prayer He came to the disciples, and found them sleeping for sorrow. And He said to them, "Why do you sleep? Rise and pray, that you may not enter into temptation."
And while He was yet speaking, behold a crowd came; and he who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was going before them, and he drew near to Jesus to kiss Him. But Jesus said to him, "Judas, dost thou betray the Son of Man with a kiss?"
But when they who were about Him saw what would follow, they said to Him, "Lord, shall we strike with the sword?" And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. But Jesus answered and said, "Bear with them thus far." And He touched his ear and healed him. But Jesus said to the chief priests and captains of the temple and elders, who had come against him, "As against a robber you have come out, with swords and clubs. When I was daily with you in the temple, you did not stretch forth your hands against Me. But this is your hour, and the power of darkness."
Now having seized Him, they led Him away to the high priest's house; but Peter was following at a distance. And when they had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard, and were seated together, Peter was in their midst. But a certain maidservant saw him sitting at the blaze, and after gazing upon him, she said, "This man too was with Him." But he denied Him, saying, "Woman, I do not know Him." And after a while, someone else saw him and said, "Thou, too, art one of them." But peter said, "Man, I am not." And about an hour later another insisted, saying, "Surely this man, too, was with him, for he also is a Galilean." But Peter said, "Man, I do not know what thou sayest." And at that moment, while he was yet speaking, a cock crowed. And the Lord turned and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, "Before a cock crows, thou wilt deny Me three times." And Peter went out and wept bitterly.
And the men who had Him [Jesus] in custody began to mock Him and beat Him. And they blindfolded Him, and kept striking His face, and asking Him, saying, Prophesy, who is it that struck Thee?" And many other things they kept saying against Him, reviling Him.
And as soon as day broke, the elders of the people and the chief priests and scribes gathered together; and they led Him away into their Sanhedrin, saying, "If Thou art the Christ, tell us." And He said to them, "If I tell you, you will not believe Me; and if I question you, you will not answer Me, or let Me go. But henceforth, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the power of God."
And they all said, "Art Thou, then, the Son of God?" He answered, "You yourselves say that I am." And they said, "What further need have we of witness? For we have heard it ourselves from His own mouth."
And the whole assemblage rose, and took Him before Pilate. And they began to accuse Him, saying, "We have found this man perverting our nation, and forbidding the payment of taxes to Cæsar, and saying that He is Christ, a king." So Pilate asked Him, saying, "Art Thou the king of the Jews?" And He answered Him and said, "Thou sayest it." And Pilate said to the chief priests and to the crowds, "I find no guilt in this Man."
But they persisted, saying, "He is stirring up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, and beginning from Galilee even to this place." But Pilate, hearing Galilee, asked whether the Man was a Galilean. And learning that He belonged to Herod's jurisdiction, he sent Him back to Herod, who likewise was in Jerusalem in those days.
Now when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceedingly glad; for he had been a long time desirous to see Him, but he had heard so much about Him, and he was hoping to see some miracle done by Him. Now he put many questions to Him, but He made no answer.
Now the chief priests and scribes were standing by, vehemently accusing Him. But Herod, with his soldiery, treated Him with contempt and mocked Him, arraying Him in a bright robe, and sent Him back to Pilate. And Herod and Pilate became friends that very day; whereas previously they had been at enmity with each other.
And Pilate called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, and said to them, "You have brought before me this Man as one who perverts the people; and behold, I upon examining Him in your presence have found no guilt in this Man touching upon the things of which you accuse Him. Neither has Herod; for I sent you back to him, and behold nothing deserving of death has been committed by Him. I will therefore chastise Him and release Him."
Now at festival time it was necessary for him to release to them one prisoner. But the whole mob cried out together, saying, "Away with this Man, and release to us Barabbas!" one who had been thrown into prison for a certain riot that occurred in the city, and for murder. But Pilate spoke to them again, wishing to release Jesus. But they kept shouting, saying, "Crucify Him! Crucify Him!" And he said to them a third time, "Why, what evil has this Man done? I find no crime deserving of death in Him. I will therefore chastise Him and release Him."
But they persisted with loud cries, demanding that He should be crucified; and their cries prevailed. And Pilate pronounced sentence that what they asked for should be done. So he released to them him who for murder and riot had been put in prison, for whom they were asking; but Jesus he delivered to their will.
And as they led Him away, they laid hold of a certain Simon of Cyrene, coming from the country, and upon him they laid the cross to bear it after Jesus. Now there was following Him a great crowd of people, and of women who were bewailing and lamenting Him. But Jesus turning to them said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, days are coming in which men will say, «Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.» Then they will begin to say to the mountains, «Fall upon us,» and to the hills, «Cover us!» For if in the case of green wood they do these things, what is to happen in the case of the dry?" Now there were also two other malefactors led to execution with Him.
And when they came to the place called "the Skull" they crucified Him there, and the robbers, one on His right hand, and the other on His left. And Jesus said, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing." Now in dividing His garments, they cast lots.
And the people stood looking on; and the rulers with them kept sneering at Him, saying, "He saved others; let Him save Himself, if He is the Christ, the chosen one of God." And the soldiers also mocked Him, coming to Him, and offering Him common wine, and saying, "If Thou art the King of the Jews, save Thyself!"
And there was also an inscription written over Him in Greek and Latin and Hebrew letters, This is the King of the Jews.
Now one of the robbers who were hanged was abusing Him, saying, "If Thou art the Christ, save Thyself, and us!" But the other in answer rebuked Him and said, "Dost thou not even fear God, seeing that thou art under the same sentence? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving what our deeds deserved; but this Man has done nothing wrong." And he said to Jesus, "Lord, remember me when Thou comest into Thy kingdom." And Jesus said to him, "Amen, I say to thee, this day thou shalt be with me in paradise."
And now it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until about the ninth hour. And the sun was darkened, and the curtain of the temple was torn in the middle. And Jesus cried out with a loud voice and said, "Father, into Thy hands I commend My spirit." And having said this, He expired.
Here all kneel and pause for a few moments.
Now when the centurion saw what happened, he glorified God, saying, "Truly this was a just Man." And all the crowd that collected for the sight, when they beheld what things had happened, began to return, beating their breasts. And all His acquaintances, and the women who had followed Him from Galilee, were standing at a distance, looking on.
And behold, there was a man named Joseph, a councilor, a good and just man-he had not been party to their plan of action-of Arimathea, a town of Judea, who was himself looking for the kingdom of God. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus, and he took him down and wrapped Him in a linen cloth, and laid Him in a rock-hewn tomb where no one had ever yet been laid.
Offertory: Psalm ci: 2-3
Communion: Psalm ci: 10, 13, 14
Prayer over the people: