Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Sunday Next Before Easter


Almighty and everlasting God, who, of thy tender love towards
mankind, hast sent thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ, to take upon
him our flesh, and to suffer death upon the cross, that all mankind
should follow the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant,
that we may both follow the example of his patience, and also be
made partakers of his resurrection; through the same Jesus Christ
our Lord. _Amen_.

THE EPISTLE. Philip, ii. 5.

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who,
being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal
with God; but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him
the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and
being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became
obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God
also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above
every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of
things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to
the glory of God the Father.

THE GOSPEL. St Matth. xxvii. 1.

When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of
the people took counsel against Jesus, to put him to death. And
when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to
Pontius Pilate the governor. Then Judas who had betrayed him, when
he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again
the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,
saying, I have sinned, in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.
And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that. And he cast
down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went
and hanged himself. And the chief priests took the silver pieces,
and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury,
because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought
with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that
field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. (Then was
fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying,
And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that
was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value, and gave
them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me.) And Jesus
stood before the governor; and the governor asked him, saying, Art
thou the King of the Jews? And Jesus said unto him, Thou sayest.
And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders, he
answered nothing. Then saith Pilate unto him, Hearest thou not
how many things they witness against thee? And he answered him to
never a word, insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly. Now at
that feast the governor was wont to release unto the people a
prisoner, whom they would. And they had then a notable prisoner,
called Barabbas. Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate
said unto them, Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or
Jesus which is called Christ? For he knew that for envy they had
delivered him. When he was set down on the judgement-seat, his wife
sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man:
for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.
But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they
should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus. The governor answered and
said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto
you? They said, Barabbas. Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do
then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let
him be crucified. And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he
done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.
When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a
tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the
multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person:
see ye to it. Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be
on us, and on our children. Then released he Barabbas unto them:
and when he had scourged Jesus he delivered him to be crucified.
Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall,
and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers. And they stripped
him, and put on him a scarlet robe. And when they had platted a
crown of thorns they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right
hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying,
Hail, King of the Jews. And they spit upon him, and took the reed,
and smote him on the head. And after that they had mocked him they
took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and
led him away to crucify him. And as they came out they found a
man of Cyrene, Simon by name; him they compelled to bear his
cross. And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that
is to say, a place of a skull, they gave him vinegar to drink
mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not
drink. And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting
lots: that it might be fulfilled, which was spoken by the prophet,
They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they
cast lots. And sitting down they watched him there; and set up
over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF
THE JEWS. Then were there two thieves crucified with him; one on
the right hand, and another on the left. And they that passed by
reviled him, wagging their heads, and saying, Thou that destroyest
the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself: if thou
be the Son of God, come down from the cross. Likewise also the
chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, He
saved others, himself he cannot save: if he be the King of Israel,
let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him. He
trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he
said, I am the Son of God. The thieves also, which were crucified
with him, cast the same in his teeth. Now from the sixth hour there
was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the
ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, _Eli, Eli, lama
sabachthani?_ that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou
forsaken me? Some of them that stood there, when they heard that,
said, This man calleth for Elias. And straightway one of them ran,
and took a spunge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a
reed, and gave him to drink. The rest said, Let be, let us see
whether Elias will come to save him. Jesus, when he had cried
again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And behold, the
vail of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom,
and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent, and the graves were
opened, and many bodies of saints which slept arose, and came out
of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city,
and appeared unto many. Now when the centurion and they that were
with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake and those things
that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the
Son of God.

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