The Collect and Lesson shall be those of the Eighteenth Sunday after Trinity.
The Gospel is taken from the Gospel according to St. Thomas:
From Adam until John the Baptist there is among those who are born of women none higher than John the Baptist, so that his eyes will not be broken. But I have said that whoever among you becomes as a little child shall know the kingdom and he shall become higher than John. Jesus said: Blessed are those who have been persecuted in their heart; these are they who have known the Father in Truth.
We give Thee most high praise and hearty thanks for thy glorious apostles Peter and Paul who have been chosen vessels of Thy grace, and lights of the world unto several generations; and we pray that, rejoicing in their fellowship, and participating in the works bestowed on us by their powers handed on in holy succession, we may partake with them of the heavenly kingdom. Amen.
The Lesson is taken from the first Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians:
Though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. Unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law. To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak; I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you. Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I not as one that beateth the air. But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection; lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
The Gospel is taken from the Gospel according to St. Matthew:
When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying: Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am? And they said: Some say that Thou art John the Baptist, some Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them: But who say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said: Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him: Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My Father who is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
O Christ our Lord, who sentest forth Thy great and noble servant John the Baptizer to prepare Thy way before Thee; allow us to be heralds of Thy glorious coming into our hearts and of Thy redemption of this world from the rule of the archons. Pour out by our hands, we pray, the purifying flood of Thy great Jordan of living water, so that all things may become pure and acceptable in Thy sight. Amen.
The Lesson is taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah:
The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness: Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a high way for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God shall stand forever. Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and His arms shall rule for Him: Behold, His reward is with Him, and His work is before Him. He shall feed His flock like a shepherd; He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.
The Gospel is taken from the Mandæan Book of John:
A child was planted out of the height, a mystery revealed in Jerusalem. The priests saw dreams; chill seized on their children, chill seized on Jerusalem. Early in the morning a seer went to the temple, and spake: In my vision of the night I beheld that a star appeared and stood over Elizabeth. Fire burned in Zachariah, the old father. A star flew down into Judaea, a star fell down into Jerusalem. And Elizar said to Zachariah: If John receives Jordan, then will I be his servant of purity. We will ascend with him to the Light’s region. And Zachariah said to all the priests: If the child comes out of the most lofty height, what then will you do after that here in Jerusalem? And the heavenly messengers took the child out of the heavenly Jordan and placed him in the womb of Elizabeth.