Holy Apostles Sts. Peter and Paul on Epistle Book cover
The Holy Gospels are from Sts. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Most of the other New Testament Books are Epistles – Letters from Sts. Peter and Paul to the early Christians located in different cities.
Each day of the liturgical year has specific Gospel and Epistle readings. These pertain to the church calendar, and spiritually nourish millions of Orthodox Christians daily. If prayer is where we speak to God, the Scriptures are how we listen to Him.
Reading Scriptures and understanding them through the teachings of the Church is paramount.
As of 2021, private interpretations and individualistic opinions of Holy Scripture have globally birthed a staggering 45,000 separate Christian denominations.
Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:15
How to Read the Bible
If from one burning lamp someone lights another, then another from that one, and so on in succession, he has light continuously. In the same way, through the Apostles ordaining their successors, and those successors ordaining others, and so on, the grace of the Holy Spirit is handed down through all generations and enlightens all who obey their spiritual shepherds and teachers. ~ St. Gregory Palamas
… we commemorate each of the saints with hymns and appropriate songs of praise, how much more should we celebrate the memory of Peter and Paul, the supreme Leaders of the pre-eminent company of the Apostles? They are the fathers and guides of all Christians: Apostles, martyrs, holy ascetics, priests, hierarchs, pastors and teachers. As chief shepherds and master builders of our common godliness and virtue, they tend and teach us all, like lights in the world, holding forth the word of life. ~ St. Gregory Palamas
… the Apostle Peter declared that the Church was built by the Holy Spirit. For you read that he said: ‘God, Who knows the hearts of men, bore witness, giving them the Holy Spirit, even as was given to us; and He made no distinction between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith’ Acts 15:8-9. In which is to be considered, that as Christ is the Cornerstone, Who joined together both peoples into one, so, too, the Holy Spirit made no distinction between the hearts of each people, but united them. ~ St. Ambrose of Milan
… the light that illumined St. Paul on the road to Damascus, the light through which he was raised to the third heaven where he heard unutterable mysteries, was not merely enlightenment of conceptual images or of spiritual knowledge. It was the effulgence of the power of the Holy Spirit shining in our Lord’s own person. Such was its brilliance that corporeal eyes were not able to bear it and were blinded; and through it all spiritual knowledge is revealed and God is truly known by the worthy and loving soul. ~ St. Makarios of Egypt
According to St. Paul you minister the Gospel only when, having yourself participated in the light of Christ, you can pass it on actively to others. Then you sow the Logos like a divine seed in the fields of your listeners’ souls... Elsewhere St. Paul, calls the teachers tillers and their pupils the field they till wisely, presents the former as ploughers and sowers of the divine Logos and the latter as fertile soil, yielding a rich crop of virtues. True ministry is not simply a celebration of sacred rites; it also involves participation in divine blessings and the communication of these blessings to others. ~ St. Gregory of Sinai
There’s a Daily Orthodox Church Calendar on Blisswood, located at the very bottom of each page and post; where one can easily access links for daily Gospel and Epistle readings.
I prefer to hold and read from an actual King James Bible, but when travel or convenience calls, there’s also a free, simple app, great for ipads or cells. It’s called Orthodox Calendar and contains lives of saints, fasting regulations, Scripture Readings, Troparion and Kontakion (Little Hymns pertaining to the day).
May your day and and all your spiritual endeavours be blessed!