June 12th, 2019

The Ecumenical Council of Nicaea, A.D. 325


First Reading: Num. 23:4-28

 4Now God met Balaam, and he said to Him, "I have set up the seven altars, and I have offered up a bull and a ram on each altar."

 5Then the LORD (A)put a word in Balaam's mouth and said, "Return to Balak, and you shall speak thus."

 6So he returned to him, and behold, he was standing beside his burnt offering, he and all the leaders of Moab.

 7He took up his [a]discourse and said,
         "From (B)Aram Balak has brought me,
         Moab's king from the mountains of the East,
         '(C)Come curse Jacob for me,
         And come, denounce Israel!'
    8"(D)How shall I curse whom God has not cursed?
         And how can I denounce whom the LORD has not denounced?
    9"As I see him from the top of the rocks,
         And I look at him from the hills;
         (E)Behold, a people who dwells apart,
         And will not be reckoned among the nations.
    10"(F)Who can count the dust of Jacob,
         Or number the fourth part of Israel?
         (G)Let me die the death of the upright,
         (H)And let my end be like his!"

 11Then Balak said to Balaam, "What have you done to me? (I)I took you to curse my enemies, but behold, you have actually blessed them!"

 12He replied, "Must I not be careful to speak (J)what the LORD puts in my mouth?"

 13Then Balak said to him, "Please come with me to another place from where you may see them, although you will only see the extreme end of them and will not see all of them; and curse them for me from there."

 14So he took him to the field of Zophim, to the top of Pisgah, and built seven altars and offered a bull and a ram on each altar.

 15And he said to Balak, "Stand here beside your burnt offering while I myself meet the LORD over there."

 16Then the LORD met Balaam and (K)put a word in his mouth and said, "Return to Balak, and thus you shall speak."

 17He came to him, and behold, he was standing beside his burnt offering, and the leaders of Moab with him. And Balak said to him, "What has the LORD spoken?"

 18Then he took up his [b]discourse and said,
         "Arise, O Balak, and hear;
         Give ear to me, O son of Zippor!
    19"(L)God is not a man, that He should lie,
         Nor a son of man, that He should repent;
         (M)Has He said, and will He not do it?
         Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?
    20"Behold, I have received a command to bless;
         (N)When He has blessed, then (O)I cannot revoke it.
    21"(P)He has not observed misfortune in Jacob;
         (Q)Nor has He seen trouble in Israel;
         (R)The LORD his God is with him,
         (S)And the shout of a king is among them.
    22"(T)God brings them out of Egypt,
         He is for them like the (U)horns of the wild ox.
    23"(V)For there is no omen against Jacob,
         Nor is there any divination against Israel;
         At the proper time it shall be said to Jacob
         And to Israel, what God has done!
    24"(W)Behold, a people rises like a lioness,
         And as a lion it lifts itself;
         It will not lie down until it devours the prey,
         And drinks the blood of the slain."

 25Then Balak said to Balaam, "Do not curse them at all nor bless them at all!"

 26But Balaam replied to Balak, "Did I not tell you, '(X)Whatever the LORD speaks, that I must do'?"

 27Then Balak said to Balaam, "Please come, I will take you to another place; perhaps it will be agreeable with God that you curse them for me from there."

 28So Balak took Balaam to the top of Peor which overlooks the wasteland.

New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

Second Reading: Lk. 22:47-71

Jesus Betrayed by Judas

 47(A)While He was still speaking, behold, a crowd came, and the one called Judas, one of the twelve, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to kiss Him.

 48But Jesus said to him, "Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?"

 49When those who were around Him saw what was going to happen, they said, "Lord, shall we strike with the (B)sword?"

 50And one of them struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his right ear.

 51But Jesus answered and said, "Stop! No more of this." And He touched his ear and healed him.

 52Then Jesus said to the chief priests and (C)officers of the temple and elders who had come against Him, "Have you come out with swords and clubs (D)as you would against a robber?

 53"While I was with you daily in the temple, you did not lay hands on Me; but this hour and the power of darkness are yours."

Jesus' Arrest

 54(E)Having arrested Him, they led Him away and brought Him to the house of the high priest; but (F)Peter was following at a distance.

 55(G)After they had kindled a fire in the middle of (H)the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter was sitting among them.

 56And a servant-girl, seeing him as he sat in the firelight and looking intently at him, said, "This man was with Him too."

 57But he denied it, saying, "Woman, I do not know Him."

 58A little later, (I)another saw him and said, "You are one of them too!" But Peter said, "Man, I am not!"

 59After about an hour had passed, another man began to insist, saying, "Certainly this man also was with Him, (J)for he is a Galilean too."

 60But Peter said, "Man, I do not know what you are talking about." Immediately, while he was still speaking, a rooster crowed.

 61(K)The Lord turned and looked at Peter And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had told him, "(L)Before a rooster crows today, you will deny Me three times."

 62And he went out and wept bitterly.

 63(M)Now the men who were holding Jesus in custody were mocking Him and beating Him,

 64and they blindfolded Him and were asking Him, saying, "(N)Prophesy, who is the one who hit You?"

 65And they were saying many other things against Him, (O)blaspheming.

Jesus before the Sanhedrin

 66(P)When it was day, (Q)the [a]Council of elders of the people assembled, both chief priests and scribes, and they led Him away to their (R)council chamber, saying,

 67"(S)If You are the Christ, tell us." But He said to them, "If I tell you, you will not believe;

 68and if I ask a question, you will not answer.

 69"(T)But from now on (U)THE SON OF MAN WILL BE SEATED AT THE RIGHT HAND of the power OF GOD."

 70And they all said, "Are You (V)the Son of God, then?" And He said to them, "(W)Yes, I am."

 71Then they said, "What further need do we have of testimony? For we have heard it ourselves from His own mouth."

New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

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