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Russian Greek-Catholic Church

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost

Last Sunday we heard Saint Paul tell us that we are "justified by faith."  The Gospel for this fourth Sunday after Pentecost shows us what sort of faith it is that justifies.  At Capernaum, a Roman centurion obtains from Jesus the healing of his servant who is ill.

The Epistle for this Sunday is a commentary on the true nature of justification by faith.  We are justified by faith, but faith is nothing unless it transforms our life, unless it bears fruit, and leads to holiness.

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The following readings below are for Sunday, June 17, 2018:


Today's Epistle reading [Romans 6.18-23]:

 
....and having been set free from sin, [you] have become slaves of righteousness.  I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations.  For just as you once yielded your members to impurity and to greater and greater iniquity, so now yield your members to righteousness for sanctification.

When you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.  But then what return did you get from the things of which you are now ashamed?  The end of those things is death.  But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the return you get is sanctification and its end, eternal life.  For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
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The Gospel reading for today [Matthew 8.5-13]:


As he entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, beseeching him and saying, "Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, in terrible distress."  And he said to him, "I will come and heal him."  But the centurion answered him, "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only say the word, and my servant will be healed.  For I am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, 'Go,' and he goes, and to another, 'Come,' and he comes, and to my slave, 'Do this,' and he does it."  When Jesus heard him, he marveled, and said to those who followed him, "Truly, I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.  I tell you, many will come from east and west and sit at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, while the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth."  And to the centurion Jesus said, "Go; be it done for you as you have believed." And the servant was healed at that very moment.