- Psalm 17
- 1 Kings 11:42—12:19
- 2 Corinthians 7:1–16
- Apology of the Augsburg Confession, V, 192–194
Today we observe the Festival of The Martyrdom of St. John the Baptist. In contrast to the Festival of The Nativity of St. John the Baptist, observed on the 24th of June, this festival commemorates John the Baptist’s beheading under Herod Antipas, Tetrarch of Galilee and Perea. Last of the Old Testament prophets, John the Baptist announced the imminent coming of Christ, and fulfilled the Old Testament prophesy regarding the return of ‘Elijah’ before the Day of the Lord. Although John the Baptist’s end may seem, to this world, a foolish and ignominious one, his martyrdom was, in truth, a profound and noble participation in the Cross of Christ.