Texts for Great Vespers and Divine Liturgy for December 3, 2017.
“Blessed is the man…” is sung.
At Psalm 140
In Tone 1
Lead my soul forth from prison* that I may give thanks to Your name.
Accept our evening prayer, O holy Lord,
and grant us forgiveness of sins,
for You alone manifested the Resurrection to the world.
The just shall gather around me* when You have been good to me.
O you people, walk around Zion and encompass her.
And there give glory to Him Who is risen from the dead.
For He is our God
Who delivers us from our sins.
Out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord;* O Lord, hear my voice!
Come you people, praise and worship Christ.
Glorify His Resurrection from the dead;
for He is our God Who delivered the world
from the deceit of the enemy.
Let Yours ears be attentive* to the voice of my prayer.
Rejoice, O you heavens;
sound the trumpets, you foundations of the earth;
cry out with joy, O you mountains.
For behold, Emmanuel has nailed our sins to the Cross;
the Giver of Life has put Death to death;
and the Lover of Mankind
has raised up Adam.
If You mark iniquities, Lord, who can stand?* But with You forgiveness is that You may be revered.
Let us praise the Lord
Who for our sake was willingly crucified in the flesh.
He suffered, was buried, and rose from the dead.
Therefore, let us sing to Him:
O Christ, keep Your Church in the orthodox faith
and bring peace to our lives;
for You are gracious and love mankind.
I have waited for You as You have commanded; my soul patiently relies on Your promise,* for it has trusted in the Lord.
O Christ our God, as we stand unworthily before Your life-bearing grave,
we offer a hymn of praise to Your ineffable tenderness of heart.
For You, O Sinless One,
in Your loving-kindness have accepted the Cross and death
in order to grant
resurrection to the world.
From the morning watch until night* let Israel trust in the Lord.
Let us praise the Word
Who is without beginning and co-eternal with the Father.
For our sake He was born of the Virgin;
He freely accepted the Cross and death, and rose in glory.
Therefore, let sing to Him:
Glory to You, O Lord,
the Giver of Life and Saviour of souls.
In Tone 4
For with the Lord there is mercy, and with Him there is plentiful redemption;* and He shall redeem Israel from all its iniquities.
As a divine prophet, herald and proclaimer of the words of God,
receiving the radiance of divine splendour in purity of mind,
you were revealed as the divinely inspired mouth of the Spirit!
You proclaim the things He revealed to you,
telling all the nations, most honoured one,
of the Kingdom of Christ and the salvation that is given to men.
Entreat Him to save and enlighten our souls!
Praise the Lord, all the nations;* proclaim His glory, all you people.
You fittingly shine forth in the vision of God,
divinely inspired one,
honoured with grace and a chief place among the prophets,
receiving the blessings of God!
Now that you have boldness towards the all good one and sympathy for us,
we honour you for having the eloquence of God,
being honourable and pleasing to him.
Never cease to pray on behalf of those who praise you in faith,
that He may deliver us from misfortunes and save our souls!
Strong is the love of the Lord for us;* eternally will His truth endure.
You revealed Your prophet, Immortal One,
to be a living cloud pouring forth the water of eternal life!
You sent him forth, giving him freely the all-holy Spirit,
consubstantial with You, the Almighty Father,
and Your Son, who shone forth from Your Essence,
by which he prophesied the saving coming of Christ our God,
proclaiming salvation to all the nations!
In Tone 1, Glory… Now…
Let us sing a hymn of praise to the Virgin Mary,
glory of the whole world!
She was herself formed by human seed,
yet she became the Mother of the Master, the Gate of heaven,
the theme of the angels’ hymn and beauty of the faithful.
She was seen as being heavenly
and the Tabernacle of the Godhead.
She indeed tore down the wall of enmity between God and man,
and brought peace in its place, she opened up the kingdom of heaven.
Let us therefore cling fast to her for she is the anchor of faith,
and let us receive as our stronghold the Lord Who was born of her.
Be of good cheer, then, and have confidence, O people of God,
for He will fight our enemies for us, He is all-powerful!
In Tone 1
O Christ, by Your Passion we have been freed from suffering;
and by Your Resurrection we have been delivered from corruption.
O Lord, glory to You!
The Lord reigns, He is clothed in majesty. Robed is the Lord, and girt about with strength.
Let all creation rejoice, let the heavens be glad,
let the nations clap their hands with joy.
For Christ our Saviour, in His love for mankind,
has nailed our sins to the Cross;
He has put Death to death,
and by raising our fallen forefather, Adam,
He has given life to all mankind.
For He has made the world firm, which shall not be moved.
O God, You are above all understanding;
You are King and Lord of heaven and earth.
Yet of Your own free will,
You allowed Yourself to be crucified because of Your love for mankind.
When You descended below,
Hades was filled with bitterness as You confronted it;
but the souls of the just received You with great joy.
Adam arose when he saw You, his Creator, down in the depths.
What a wonder this is!
You are the life of all and have tasted death
in order to dispel the darkness of the world with Your light.
O Lord, risen from the dead, glory to You!
Holiness befits Your house, O Lord, for length of days.
The myrrh-bearing women were filled with grief
as they hastened with spices to Your tomb;
but they did not find Your most pure body.
Instead, they found an angel
who proclaimed Your unique and glorious Resurrection,
and commanded them to announce to Your Apostles:
The Lord is risen, granting great mercy to the world.
O Mother of God, the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled,
since you remained a virgin both before and after giving birth.
For it was God Who was born of you to restore our human nature.
Therefore, do not overlook your servants who supplicate you in your temple.
Since you have held the merciful Lord in your arms,
be compassionate toward your servants,
and beseech Him to save our souls.
In Tone 1
Though the stone was sealed by the Judeans* and soldiers guarded Your most pure body,* You arose, O Saviour, on the third day* and gave life to the world.* And so the heavenly powers cried out You, O Giver of Life:* Glory to Your Resurrection, O Christ!* Glory to Your Kingdom!* Glory to Your saving plan!** O only Lover of Mankind.
In Tone 2, Glory…
As we celebrate the memory of Your prophet, Zephaniah,* O Lord, we beseech You through him: “Save our souls!”
O Mother of God, the mysteries which surround you are exceedingly glorious,* and beyond the power of understanding.* For you retained the seal of purity,* and your virginity remained inviolate;* yet you are acknowledged, without doubt,* to be the Mother who gave birth to the true God.* We beg you, therefore, to entreat Him to save our souls.
Troparia and Kontakia
Troparion, Tone 1: Though the stone was sealed by the Judeans,* and soldiers guarded Your most pure body,* You arose, O Saviour, on the third day,* and gave life to the world.* And so the heavenly powers cried out to You, O Giver of Life:* Glory to Your resurrection, O Christ!* Glory to Your kingdom!* Glory to Your saving plan,* O only Lover of mankind.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.
Kontakion, Tone 1: You arose in glory from the tomb* and with Yourself You raise the world.* All humanity acclaims You as God.* and death has vanished.* Adam exults, O Master,* and Eve, redeemed from bondage now, cries out for joy:* “You are the One, O Christ, Who offer resurrection to all.”
Now and for ever and ever. Amen.
Theotokion, Tone 1: When Gabriel uttered to you, O Virgin, his ‘Rejoice!’* at that sound the Master of all became flesh in you, the Holy Ark.* As the just David said,* you have become wider than the heavens carrying your Creator.* Glory to Him Who dwelt in you!* Glory to Him Who came forth from you!* Glory to Him Who freed us through birth from you!
Prokeimenon, Tone 1
Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, as we have hoped in You.
verse: Rejoice in the Lord, O you just; praise befits the righteous. (Psalm 32:22,1)
Alleluia, Tone 1
verse: God gives me vindication, and has subdued people under me.
verse: Making great the salvation of the king, and showing mercy to His anointed, to David, and to His posterity forever. (Psalm 17:48,51)
Praise the Lord from the heavens;* praise Him in the highest.* Alleluia, alleluia,* alleluia. (Psalm 148:1)