Beheading of the Holy and Glorious Prophet, Forerunner and Baptist John
After reprimanding King Herod Antipas for marrying his brother’s wife, Salome, his new wife wanted Saint John dead. Her Daughter, Herodia, danced for King Herod at his birthday and the King loved it so much he granted her anything she wished. She asked for John the Baptist’s head on a platter. This was done, and so Saint John was martyred.
Μνήμη δικαίου μετ᾽ ἐγκωμίων· σοὶ δὲ ἀρκέσει ἡ μαρτυρία τοῦ Κυρίου Πρόδρομε· ἀνεδείχθης γὰρ ὄντως καὶ Προφητῶν σεβασμιώτερος, ὅτι καὶ ἐν ῥείθροις βαπτίσαι κατηξιώθης τὸν κηρυττόμενον· ὅθεν τῆς ἀληθείας ὑπεραθλήσας, χαίρων εὐηγγελίσω καὶ τοῖς ἐν ᾅδῃ, Θεὸν φανερωθέντα ἐν σαρκί, τὸν αἴροντα τὴν ἁμαρτίαν τοῦ κόσμου, καὶ παρέχοντα ἡμῖν τὸ μέγα ἔλεος.
Ἦχος πλ. α’.
Ἡ τοῦ Προδρόμου ἔνδοξος ἀπoτομή, οἰκονομία γέγονέ τις θεϊκή, ἵνα καὶ τοῖς ἐν ᾅδη τοῦ Σωτῆρος κηρύξῃ τὴν ἔλευσιν. Θρηνείτω οὖν Ἡρωδιάς, ἄνομον φόνον αἰτήσασα, οὐ νόμον γὰρ τὸν τοῦ Θεοῦ, οὐ ζῶντα αἰώνα ἠγάπησεν, ἀλλ᾽ ἐπίπλαστον πρόσκαιρον.
Troparion — Tone 2
The memory of the righteous is celebrated with hymns of praise, / but the Lord’s testimony is sufficient for you, O Forerunner. / You were shown in truth to be the most honorable of the prophets, / for you were deemed worthy to baptize in the streams of the Jordan Him whom they foretold. / Therefore, having suffered for the truth with joy, / you proclaimed to those in hell God who appeared in the flesh, / who takes away the sin of the world, and grants us great mercy.
Kontakion — Tone 5
The glorious beheading of the Forerunner, / became an act of divine dispensation, / for he preached to those in hell the coming of the Savior. / Let Herodias lament, for she entreated lawless murder, / loving not the law of God, nor eternal life, / but that which is false and temporal.