Consonant with both Anglicanism’s and monasticism’s love of patristic theology-spirituality, I occasionally post selections from Durham University’s two-year lectionary for the Divine Office that draws mostly from patristic writings. The lectionary was initially edited by Stephen Mark Holmes (University of Edinburgh School of Divinity) and subsequently re-edited and formatted by Michele Freyhauf (Durham University). Click here for the link to the lectionary.]
Patristic Lectionary—9 July 2020, Feria after Fourth Sunday of Trinitytide (Thursday ~ 14th Week in Ordinary Time)
[The image is Gustave Doré’s “King Solomon, Writing the Book of Proverbs” from Dore’s The Holy Bible, engraved by Pannemaker, 1866]
Blessings are on the head of the righteous, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.
The memory of the righteous is a blessing, but the name of the wicked will rot.
The wise of heart will heed commandments, but a prating fool will come to ruin.
He who walks in integrity walks securely, but he who perverts his ways will be found out.
He who winks the eye causes trouble, but he who boldly reproves makes peace.
The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence.
Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offences.
On the lips of him who has understanding, wisdom is found, but a rod is for the back of him who lacks sense.
Wise men lay up knowledge, but the babbling of a fool brings ruin near.
A rich man’s wealth is his strong city; the poverty of the poor is their ruin.
The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin.
He who heeds instruction is on the path to life, but he who rejects reproof goes astray.
He who conceals hatred has lying lips, and he who utters slander is a fool.
When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but he who restrains his lips is prudent.
The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; the mind of the wicked is of little worth.
The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of sense.
The blessing of the LORD makes rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.
It is like sport to a fool to do wrong, but wise conduct is pleasure to a man of understanding.
What the wicked dreads will come upon him, but the desire of the righteous will be granted.
When the tempest passes, the wicked is no more, but the righteous is established forever.
Like vinegar to the teeth, and smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those who send him.
The fear of the LORD prolongs life, but the years of the wicked will be short.
The hope of the righteous ends in gladness, but the expectation of the wicked comes to nought.
The LORD is a stronghold to him whose way is upright, but destruction to evildoers.
The righteous will never be removed, but the wicked will not dwell in the land.
The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, but the perverse tongue will be cut off.
The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable, but the mouth of the wicked, what is perverse.
Enarrationes in xii. Psalmos Davidicos 36, 65-66.
Let us be forever pondering on wisdom in our hearts and discussing it with our lips; let your tongue speak only what is right, and let God’s Law be constantly in your hearts. For that is what Scripture enjoins on us: let your concern be only with such things as these when you sit in your house and walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. Let the Lord Jesus then be the sole object of your discourse, for he is Wisdom, even the Word, God’s own word. For Scripture also commands, Open your mouth to receive God’s word. That man manifests him who constantly repeats his sayings and meditates on his words. Let us always be speaking of him. Whenever we speak of wisdom it is of him we speak; when we speak of virtue it is of him; and when we speak of truth and life and redemption it is of him.
It is written, Open your mouth to the word of God. It is for you to open, but he speaks. Therefore David said, I will hear what the Lord says within me, and the Son of God himself says, Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. But not all of us can receive, like Solomon and Daniel, the perfection of wisdom, but upon all will be poured out the Spirit of wisdom to each according to his capacity, provided that he is a man of faith. If you believe, you have the spirit of wisdom.
Therefore when you sit in your house meditate and speak always of the things of God. House we can take to mean the Church or our own interior house where we may speak within ourselves. Choose your words when you speak so that you avoid sin and do not fall through empty chatter. When you are seated speak to yourself as one who is a judge. When you are by the way speak lest you be idle. You speak by the way if you speak in Christ, for Christ is the way. Speak to yourself by the way and you speak to Christ. Hear then how you are to talk to him, I desire, he said, that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarrelling: Speak, O man, when you are falling asleep lest the sleep of death overtake you. Hear how you should speak as you go to sleep, I will not give sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids, until I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling place for the mighty one of Jacob.
In your rising or resurrection speak of him that you may carry out what you are commanded to do. Hear how Christ wakens you. Your soul says, The voice of my brother sounds at the gate, and Christ says, Open to me, my sister, my spouse. And hear how you are to awaken Christ. The soul says, I have adjured you, O daughters of Jerusalem, to waken and to re-awaken love. Love is Christ.