February 8

Genesis 49

1And Jacob sent for his sons, and said, Come together, all of you, so that I may give you news of your fate in future times.

2Come near, O sons of Jacob, and give ear to the words of Israel your father.

3Reuben, you are my oldest son, the first-fruit of my strength, first in pride and first in power:

4But because you were uncontrolled, the first place will not be yours; for you went up to your father’s bed, even his bride-bed, and made it unclean.

5Simeon and Levi are brothers; deceit and force are their secret designs.

6Take no part in their secrets, O my soul; keep far away, O my heart, from their meetings; for in their wrath they put men to death, and for their pleasure even oxen were wounded.

7A curse on their passion for it was bitter; and on their wrath for it was cruel. I will let their heritage in Jacob be broken up, driving them from their places in Israel.

8To you, Judah, will your brothers give praise: your hand will be on the neck of your haters; your father’s sons will go down to the earth before you.

9Judah is a young lion; like a lion full of meat you have become great, my son; now he takes his rest like a lion stretched out and like an old lion; by whom will his sleep be broken?

10The rod of authority will not be taken from Judah, and he will not be without a law-giver, till he comes who has the right to it, and the peoples will put themselves under his rule.

11Knotting his ass’s cord to the vine, and his young ass to the best vine; washing his robe in wine, and his clothing in the blood of grapes:

12His eyes will be dark with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

13The resting-place of Zebulun will be by the sea, and he will be a harbour for ships; the edge of his land will be by Zidon.

14Issachar is a strong ass stretched out among the flocks:

15And he saw that rest was good and the land was pleasing; so he let them put weights on his back and became a servant.

16Dan will be the judge of his people, as one of the tribes of Israel.

17May Dan be a snake in the way, a horned snake by the road, biting the horse’s foot so that the horseman has a fall.

18I have been waiting for your salvation, O Lord.

19Gad, an army will come against him, but he will come down on them in their flight.

20Asher’s bread is fat; he gives delicate food for kings.

21Naphtali is a roe let loose, giving fair young ones.

22Joseph is a young ox, whose steps are turned to the fountain;

23He was troubled by the archers; they sent out their arrows against him, cruelly wounding him:

24But their bows were broken by a strong one, and the cords of their arms were cut by the Strength of Jacob, by the name of the Stone of Israel:

25Even by the God of your father, who will be your help, and by the Ruler of all, who will make you full with blessings from heaven on high, blessings of the deep stretched out under the earth, blessings of the breasts and of the fertile body:

26Blessings of sons, old and young, to the father: blessings of the oldest mountains and the fruit of the eternal hills: let them come on the head of Joseph, on the crown of him who was separate from his brothers.

27Benjamin is a wolf, searching for meat: in the morning he takes his food, and in the evening he makes division of what he has taken.

28These are the twelve tribes of Israel: and these are the words their father said to them, blessing them; to every one he gave his blessing.

29And he gave orders to them, saying, Put me to rest with my people and with my fathers, in the hollow of the rock in the field of Ephron the Hittite,

30In the rock in the field of Machpelah, near Mamre in the land of Canaan, which Abraham got from Ephron the Hittite, to be his resting-place.

31There Abraham and Sarah his wife were put to rest, and there they put Isaac and Rebekah his wife, and there I put Leah to rest.

32In the rock in the field which was got for a price from the people of Heth.

33And when Jacob had come to the end of these words to his sons, stretching himself on his bed, he gave up his spirit, and went the way of his people.

Genesis 50

1And Joseph put his head down on his father’s face, weeping and kissing him.

2And Joseph gave orders to his servants who had the necessary knowledge, to make his father’s body ready, folding it in linen with spices, and they did so.

3And the forty days needed for making the body ready went by: and there was weeping for him among the Egyptians for seventy days.

4And when the days of weeping for him were past, Joseph said to the servants of Pharaoh, If now you have love for me, say these words to Pharaoh:

5My father made me take an oath, saying, When I am dead, put me to rest in the place I have made ready for myself in the land of Canaan. So now let me go and put my father in his last resting-place, and I will come back again.

6And Pharaoh said, Go up and put your father to rest, as you gave your oath to him.

7So Joseph went up to put his father in his last resting-place; and with him went all the servants of Pharaoh, and the chief men of his house and all the chiefs of the land of Egypt,

8And all the family of Joseph, and his brothers and his father’s people: only their little ones and their flocks and herds they did not take with them from the land of Goshen.

9And carriages went up with him and horsemen, a great army.

10And they came to the grain-floor of Atad on the other side of Jordan, and there they gave the last honours to Jacob, with great and bitter sorrow, weeping for their father for seven days.

11And when the people of the land, the people of Canaan, at the grain-floor of Atad, saw their grief, they said, Great is the grief of the Egyptians: so the place was named Abel-mizraim, on the other side of Jordan.

12So his sons did as he had given them orders to do:

13For they took him into the land of Canaan and put him to rest in the hollow rock in the field of Machpelah, which Abraham got with the field, for a resting-place, from Ephron the Hittite at Mamre.

14And when his father had been put to rest, Joseph and his brothers and all who had gone with him, went back to Egypt.

15Now after the death of their father, Joseph’s brothers said to themselves, It may be that Joseph’s heart will be turned against us, and he will give us punishment for all the evil which we did to him.

16So they sent word to Joseph, saying, Your father, before his death, gave us orders, saying,

17You are to say to Joseph, Let the wrongdoing of your brothers be overlooked, and the evil they did to you: now, if it is your pleasure, let the sin of the servants of your father’s God have forgiveness. And at these words, Joseph was overcome with weeping.

18Then his brothers went, and falling at his feet, said, Truly, we are your servants.

19And Joseph said, Have no fear: am I in the place of God?

20As for you, it was in your mind to do me evil, but God has given a happy outcome, the salvation of numbers of people, as you see today.

21So now, have no fear: for I will take care of you and your little ones. So he gave them comfort with kind words.

22Now Joseph and all his father’s family went on living in Egypt: and the years of Joseph’s life were a hundred and ten.

23And Joseph saw Ephraim’s children of the third generation: and the children of Machir, the son of Manasseh, came to birth on Joseph’s knees.

24Then Joseph said to his brothers, The time of my death has come; but God will keep you in mind and take you out of this land into the land which he gave by his oath to Abraham and Isaac and Jacob.

25Then Joseph made the children of Israel take an oath, saying, God will certainly give effect to his word, and you are to take my bones away from here.

26So Joseph came to his death, being a hundred and ten years old: and they made his body ready, and he was put in a chest in Egypt.

Psalms 39

To the chief music-maker. Of Jeduthun. A Psalm. Of David.

1 I said, I will give attention to my ways, so that my tongue may do no wrong; I will keep my mouth under control, while the sinner is before me.

2I made no sound, I said no word, even of good; and I was moved with sorrow.

3My heart was burning in my breast; while I was deep in thought the fire was lighted; then I said with my tongue,

4Lord, give me knowledge of my end, and of the measure of my days, so that I may see how feeble I am.

5You have made my days no longer than a hand’s measure; and my years are nothing in your eyes; truly, every man is but a breath. (Selah.)

6Truly, every man goes on his way like an image; he is troubled for no purpose: he makes a great store of wealth, and has no knowledge of who will get it.

7And now, Lord, what am I waiting for? my hope is in you.

8Make me free from all my sins; do not let me be shamed by the man of evil behaviour.

9I was quiet, and kept my mouth shut; because you had done it.

10No longer let your hand be hard on me; I am wasted by the blows of your hand.

11By the weight of your wrath against man’s sin, the glory of his form is wasted away; truly every man is but a breath. (Selah.)

12Let my prayer come to your ears, O Lord, and give attention to my cry, make an answer to my weeping: for my time here is short before you, and in a little time I will be gone, like all my fathers.

13Let your wrath be turned away from me, so that I may be comforted, before I go away from here, and become nothing.

Hebrews 4:14-16

14Having then a great high priest, who has made his way through the heavens, even Jesus the Son of God, let us be strong in our faith.

15For we have not a high priest who is not able to be touched by the feelings of our feeble flesh; but we have one who has been tested in all points as we ourselves are tested, but without sin.

16Then let us come near to the seat of grace without fear, so that mercy may be given to us, and we may get grace for our help in time of need.

Hebrews 5

1Every high priest who is taken from among men is given his position to take care of the interests of men in those things which have to do with God, so that he may make offerings for sins.

2He is able to have feeling for those who have no knowledge and for those who are wandering from the true way, because he himself is feeble;

3And being feeble, he has to make sin-offerings for himself as well as for the people.

4And no man who is not given authority by God, as Aaron was, takes this honour for himself.

5In the same way Christ did not take for himself the glory of being made a high priest, but was given it by him who said, You are my Son, this day I have given you being:

6As he says in another place, You are a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.

7Who in the days of his flesh, having sent up prayers and requests with strong crying and weeping to him who was able to give him salvation from death, had his prayer answered because of his fear of God.

8And though he was a Son, through the pain which he underwent, the knowledge came to him of what it was to be under God’s orders;

9And when he had been made complete, he became the giver of eternal salvation to all those who are under his orders;

10Being named by God a high priest of the order of Melchizedek.

11Of whom we have much to say which it is hard to make clear, because you are slow of hearing.

12And though by this time it would be right for you to be teachers, you still have need of someone to give you teaching about the first simple rules of God’s revelation; you have become like babies who have need of milk, and not of solid food.

13For everyone who takes milk is without experience of the word of righteousness: he is a child.

14But solid food is for men of full growth, even for those whose senses are trained by use to see what is good and what is evil.

Hebrews 6:1-12

1For this reason let us go on from the first things about Christ to full growth; not building again that on which it is based, that is, the turning of the heart from dead works, and faith in God,

2The teaching of baptisms, and of the putting on of hands, and of the future life of the dead, and of the judging on the last day.

3Now we will do this, if God lets us.

4As for those who at one time saw the light, tasting the good things from heaven, and having their part in the Holy Spirit,

5With knowledge of the good word of God, and of the powers of the coming time,

6And then let themselves be turned away, it is not possible for their hearts to be made new a second time; because they themselves put the Son of God on the cross again, openly shaming him.

7For a land, drinking in the frequent rain and producing good plants for those for whom it is worked, has a blessing from God:

8But if it sends up thorns and evil plants, it is of no use and is ready to be cursed; its only end is to be burned.

9But, my loved ones, though we say this, we are certain that you have better things in you, things which go with salvation;

10For God is true, and will not put away from him the memory of your work and of your love for his name, in the help which you gave and still give to the saints.

11And it is our desire that you may all keep the same high purpose in certain hope to the end:

12So that you may not be slow in heart, but may take as your example those to whom God has given their heritage, because of their faith and their long waiting.

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