Greetings in the Name of our Crucified and Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ:
Today, May 1, is the Feast Day when the Christian Church recognizes Saint Philip and Saint James, Apostles.
This post is just one of many devoted to the Feast Days that the historic Christian Church observed that are largely neglected today. I pray that you find this message beneficial in your devotions this day.
“Saint Philip is mentioned in the lists of the apostles (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13), but only in John’s Gospel is more told about him. Philip was from Bethsadia in Galilee and one of the first disciples called after Peter and Andrew. Philip also was instrumental in bringing Nathanael to Jesus (John 1:42-51). It was to Philip that Jesus posed the question about where to buy bread to feed five thousand men (John 6:5). During Holy Week, Philip with Andrew brought some inquiring Greeks to Jesus (John 12:20-22). And on Maundy Thursday evening, Philip asked Jesus to show the Father to him and to the rest of the disciples (John 14:8). According to tradition, Philip went to labor in Phrygia and was buried there.
“Saint James was a son of Alphaeus and was also called ‘the Younger’ (to distinguish him from James, the son of Zebedee, ‘the Elder,’ whose festival day is July 25). His mother, Mary, was one of the faithful women who stood at the cross of Jesus (Matthew 27:56; Mark 15:40). James is mentioned in the same apostolic lists as Philip, but there is no other mention of him in the New Testament. There is also no information regarding his field of labor or the circumstances of his death, except that he may have been martyred by being sawed in two.” 1
The verse or theme for this feast is “Alleluia. I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. Alleluia.” It is from John 14:6. An additional focus for your devotion this day is “Lord, show us the Father (John 14:8).”
Old Testament: Isaiah 30:18-21
Psalm: Psalm 36:5-12 (antiphon v. 8)
Epistle: Ephesians 2:19-22
Gospel: John 14:1-14
The hymn appointed for this day is “Christ Be My Leader” as found on page 861 in the Lutheran Service Book. You may listen to the hymn at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_viRje2do34
Collect of the Day:
Almighty God, Your Son revealed Himself to Philip and James and gave them the knowledge of everlasting life. Grant us perfectly to know Your Son, Jesus Christ, to be the way, the truth, and the life, and steadfastly to walk in the way that leads to eternal life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Pastor Jim Tuell
1 Treasury of Daily Prayer, Scot A Kinnaman, General Editor, Concordia Publishing House, Saint Louis, MO., 2008, p, 1292.