ST. PAUL’S LETTER TO PHILEMON 1:1-25
PAUL, a prisoner for Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, To Philemon our beloved fellow worker, and Apphia our sister and Archippos our fellow soldier, and the church in your house: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers, because I hear of your love and of the faith which you have toward the Lord Jesus and all the saints, and I pray that the sharing of your faith may promote the knowledge of all the good that is ours in Christ.
For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you.
Accordingly, though I am bold enough in Christ to command you to do what is required, yet for love’s sake I prefer to appeal to you – I, Paul, an ambassador and now a prisoner also for Christ Jesus – I appeal to you for my child, Onesimos, whose father I have become in my imprisonment.
(Formerly he was useless to you, but now he is indeed useful to you and to me.)
I am sending him back to you, sending my very heart.
I would have been glad to keep him with me, in order that he might serve me on your behalf during my imprisonment for the gospel; but I preferred to do nothing without your consent in order that your goodness might not be by compulsion but of your own free will.
Perhaps this is why he was parted from you for a while, that you might have him back for ever, no longer as a slave but more than a slave, as a beloved brother, especially to me but how much more to you, both in the flesh and in the Lord.
So if you consider me your partner, receive him as you would receive me.
If he has wronged you at all, or owes you anything, charge that to my account.
I, Paul, write this with my own hand, I will repay it – to say nothing of your owing me even your own self.
Yes, brother, I want some benefit from you in the Lord.
Refresh my heart in Christ. Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.
At the same time, prepare a guest room for me, for I am hoping through your prayers to be granted to you.
Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, sends greetings to you, and so do Mark, Aristarchos, Demas, and Luke, my fellow workers.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
MARK 14:43-72; 15:1
At that time, while Jesus was speaking to the disciples, Judas Iscariot came, one of the twelve, and with him a crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders.
Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I shall kiss is the man; seize him and lead him away under guard.”
And when he came, he went up to him at once, and said, “Rabbi!” And he kissed him.
And they laid hands on him and seized him.
But one of those who stood by drew his sword, and struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his ear.
And Jesus said to them, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to capture me? Day after day I was with you in the temple teaching, and you did not seize me. But let the scriptures be fulfilled.”
And they all forsook him, and fled.
And a young man followed him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body; and they seized him, but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked.
And they led Jesus to the high priest; and all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes were assembled.
And Peter had followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest; and he was sitting with the guards, and warming himself at the fire.
Now the chief priests and the whole council sought testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none.
For many bore false witness against him, and their witness did not agree.
And some stood up and bore false witness against him, saying, “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands.'”
Yet not even so did their testimony agree.
And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, “Have you no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?”
But he was silent and made no answer.
Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?”
And Jesus said, “I am; and you will see the Son of man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.”
And the high priest tore his garments, and said, “Why do we still need witnesses? You have heard his blasphemy. What is your decision?”
And they all condemned him as deserving death.
And some began to spit on him, and to cover his face, and to strike him, saying to him, “Prophesy!”
And the guards received him with blows.
And as Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the maids of the high priest came; and seeing Peter warming himself, she looked at him, and said, “You also were with the Nazarene, Jesus.”
But he denied it, saying, “I neither know nor understand what you mean.”
And he went out into the gateway, and the cock crowed.
And the maid saw him, and began again to say to the bystanders, “This man is one of them.”
But again he denied it.
And after a little while again the bystanders said to Peter, “Certainly you are one of them; for you are a Galilean.”
But he began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, “I do not know this man of whom you speak.”
And immediately the cock crowed a second time.
And Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, “Before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.” And he broke down and wept.
And as soon as it was morning the chief priests, with the elders and scribes, and the whole council held a consultation; and they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him to Pilate.