O Almighty God,
who by thy blessed Son
didst call Matthew from the receipt of taxes
to be an Apostle and Evangelist:
Grant us grace to forsake all covetous desires
and inordinate love of riches,
and to follow the same
thy Son Jesus Christ,
who liveth and reigneth
with thee and the Holy Ghost,
world without end. Amen.
Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a town and spend a year there, doing business and making money.’ Yet you do not even know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wishes, we will live and do this or that.’ As it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. Anyone, then, who knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, commits sin.
Come now, you rich people, weep and wail for the miseries that are coming to you. Your riches have rotted, and your clothes are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you, and it will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure for the last days. Listen! The wages of the labourers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts on a day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the righteous one, who does not resist you.
From Psalm 31
I will be glad and rejoice in your mercy,
for you have seen my affliction
and known my soul in adversity.
You have not shut me up in the hand of the enemy;
you have set my feet in an open place.
Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am in trouble;
my eye is consumed with sorrow,
my soul and my body also.
For my life is wasted with grief,
and my years with sighing;
my strength fails me because of my affliction,
and my bones are consumed.
But my trust is in you, O Lord.
I have said, ‘You are my God.
‘My times are in your hand;
deliver me from the hand of my enemies,
and from those who persecute me.
‘Make your face to shine upon your servant,
and save me for your mercy’s sake.’
Lord, let me not be confounded
for I have called upon you;
but let the wicked be put to shame;
let them be silent in the grave.
Let the lying lips be put to silence
that speak against the righteous
with arrogance, disdain and contempt.
Love the Lord, all you his servants;
for the Lord protects the faithful,
but repays to the full the proud.
Be strong and let your heart take courage,
all you who wait in hope for the Lord.