May 6 (old calendar) / May 19 (new)
Righteous Job the Long-suffering (ca. 2000-1500 B.C.). Ven. Micah, disciple of Ven. Sergius of Radonezh (1385). Martyrs Barbarus the soldier, Bacchus, Callimachus, and Dionysius, in Morea (ca. 362). Martyr Barbarus in Thessaly, who was a robber.
The righteous Job (whose name means “persecuted”), God’s faithful servant, was the perfect image of every virtue. The son of Zarah and Bossorha (Job 42), Job was a fifth-generation descendent of Abraham. He was a truthful, righteous, patient and pious man who abstained from every evil thing. Job was very rich and blessed by God in all things, as was no other son of Ausis (his country, which lay between Idoumea and Arabia). However, divine condescension permitted him to be tested.
Job lost his children, his wealth, his glory, and every consolation all at once. His entire body became a terrible wound covered with boils. Yet he remained steadfast and patient in the face of his misfortune for seven years, always giving thanks to God.
Later, God restored his former prosperity, and he had twice as much as before. Job lived for 170 years after his misfortune, completing his earthly life in 1350 B.C. at the age of 240. Some authorities say that Job’s afflictions lasted only one year, and that afterwards he lived for 140 years, reaching the age of 210.
Job’s explanations are among the most poetic writings in the Old Testament book which bears his name. It is one of the most edifying portions of Holy Scripture. Job teaches us that we must endure life’s adversities patiently and with trust in God. As Saint Anthony the Great (January 17) says, without temptations, it is impossible for the faithful to be saved.
The Orthodox Church reads the book of Job, the first of the seven wisdom books of the Old Testament, during Holy Week, drawing a parallel between Job and Christ as righteous men who suffered through no fault of their own. God allowed Satan to afflict Job so that his faithfulness would be proven. Christ, the only sinless one, suffered voluntarily for our sins. The Septuagint text of Job 42:17 says that Job “will rise again with those whom the Lord raises up.” This passage is read on Great and Holy Friday, when the composite Gospel at Vespers speaks of the tombs being opened at the moment the Savior died on the Cross, and the bodies of the saints were raised, and they appeared to many after Christ’s Resurrection (Mt.27:52)
Troparion of Pascha, tone 5
Christ is risen from the dead, trampling on death by death, and on those in the tombs bestowing life.
Troparion of the Sunday, Tone 3
Let the heavens rejoice, / let the earth be glad! / For the Lord has shown might with His arm,/ He has trampled down death by death. / He has become the first-born of the dead. / He has delivered us from the depths of hell, / and has granted the world great mercy!
Kontakion of the Sunday, Tone 3
On this day Thou didst rise from the tomb, O Merciful One, / leading us from the gates of death. / On this day Adam exults as Eve rejoices; / with the prophets and patriarchs they unceasingly praise / the divine majesty of Thy power!
Kontakion of the paralytic, Tone 3
By Thy divine presence, O Lord, raise my soul which is terribly paralyzed by all kinds of sins and misguided actions, as of old Thou didst raise the paralytic, that saved I may cry to Thee: O compassionate Christ, glory to Thy power.
Acts 9:32-42 (Epistle)
- Now it came to pass, as Peter went through all parts of the country, that he also came down to the saints who dwelt in Lydda.
- There he found a certain man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden eight years and was paralyzed.
- And Peter said to him, “Aeneas, Jesus the Christ heals you. Arise and make your bed.” Then he arose immediately.
- So all who dwelt at Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord.
- At Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha, which is translated Dorcas. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did.
- But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room.
- And since Lydda was near Joppa, and the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent two men to him, imploring him not to delay in coming to them.
- Then Peter arose and went with them. When he had come, they brought him to the upper room. And all the widows stood by him weeping, showing the tunics and garments which Dorcas had made while she was with them.
- But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up.
- Then he gave her his hand and lifted her up; and when he had called the saints and widows, he presented her alive.
- And it became known throughout all Joppa, and many believed on the Lord.