Tagged: The Word of the Lord

October 30

Psalms 119:33-64

HE

33 O Lord, let me see the way of your rules, and I will keep it to the end.

34Give me wisdom, so that I may keep your law; going after it with all my heart.

35Make me go in the way of your teachings; for they are my delight.

36Let my heart be turned to your unchanging word, and not to evil desire.

37Let my eyes be turned away from what is false; give me life in your ways.

38Give effect to your word to your servant, in whose heart is the fear of you.

39Take away the shame which is my fear; for your decisions are good.

40See how great is my desire for your orders: give me life in your righteousness.

VAU

41 Let your mercies come to me, O Lord, even your salvation, as you have said.

42So that I may have an answer for the man who would put me to shame; for I have faith in your word.

43Take not your true word quite out of my mouth; for I have put my hope in your decisions.

44So that I may keep your law for ever and ever;

45So that my way may be in a wide place: because my search has been for your orders.

46So that I may give knowledge of your unchanging word before kings, and not be put to shame.

47And so that I may take delight in your teachings, to which I have given my love.

48And so that my hands may be stretched out to you; and I will give thought to your rules.

ZAIN

49 Keep in mind your word to your servant, for on it has my hope been fixed.

50This is my comfort in my trouble; that your sayings have given me life.

51The men of pride have made great sport of me; but I have not been turned from your law.

52I have kept the memory of your decisions from times past, O Lord; and they have been my comfort.

53I am burning with wrath, because of the sinners who have given up your law.

54Your rules have been melodies to me, while I have been living in strange lands.

55I have given thought to your name in the night, O Lord, and have kept your law.

56This has been true of me, that I have kept your orders in my heart.

CHETH

57 The Lord is my heritage: I have said that I would be ruled by your words.

58I have given my mind to do your pleasure with all my heart; have mercy on me, as you have said.

59I gave thought to my steps, and my feet were turned into the way of your unchanging word.

60I was quick to do your orders, and let no time be wasted.

61The cords of evil-doers are round me; but I have kept in mind your law.

62In the middle of the night I will get up to give you praise, because of all your right decisions.

63I keep company with all your worshippers, and those who have your orders in their memory.

64The earth, O Lord, is full of your mercy: give me knowledge of your rules.

Isaiah 31

1Cursed are those who go down to Egypt for help, and who put their faith in horses; looking to war-carriages for salvation, because of their numbers; and to horsemen, because they are very strong; but they are not looking to the Holy One of Israel, or turning their hearts to the Lord;

2Though he is wise, and able to send evil, and his purpose will not be changed; but he will go against the house of the evil-doers, and against those to whom they are looking for help.

3For the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses are flesh, and not spirit: and when the Lord’s hand is stretched out, the helper and he who is helped will come down together.

4For the Lord has said to me, As a lion, or a young lion, makes an angry noise over his food, and if a band of herdsmen come out against him, he will not be in fear of their voices, or give up his food for their noise: so the Lord of armies will come down to make war against Mount Zion and its hill.

5Like birds with outstretched wings, so will the Lord of armies be a cover to Jerusalem; he will be a cover and salvation for it, going over it he will keep it from danger.

6Come back to him who has been so deeply sinned against by the children of Israel.

7For in that day they will all give up their images of silver and of gold, the sin which they made for themselves.

8Then the Assyrian will come down by the sword, but not of man; the sword, not of men, will be the cause of his destruction: and he will go in flight from the sword, and his young men will be put to forced work.

9And his rock will come to nothing because of fear, and his chiefs will go in flight from the flag, says the Lord, whose fire is in Zion, and his altar in Jerusalem.

Isaiah 32

1See, a king will be ruling in righteousness, and chiefs will give right decisions.

2And a man will be as a safe place from the wind, and a cover from the storm; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shade of a great rock in a waste land.

3And the eyes of those who see will not be shut, and those who have hearing will give ear to the word.

4The man of sudden impulses will become wise in heart, and he whose tongue is slow will get the power of talking clearly.

5The foolish man will no longer be named noble, and they will not say of the false man that he is a man of honour.

6For the foolish man will say foolish things, having evil thoughts in his heart, working what is unclean, and talking falsely about the Lord, to keep food from him who is in need of it, and water from him whose soul is desiring it.

7The designs of the false are evil, purposing the destruction of the poor man by false words, even when he is in the right.

8But the noble-hearted man has noble purposes, and by these he will be guided.

9Give ear to my voice, you women who are living in comfort; give attention to my words, you daughters who have no fear of danger.

10In not much more than a year, you, who are not looking for evil, will be troubled: for the produce of the vine-gardens will be cut off, and there will be no getting in of the grapes.

11Be shaking with fear, you women who are living in comfort; be troubled, you who have no fear of danger: take off your robes and put on clothing of grief.

12Have sorrow for the fields, the pleasing fields, the fertile vine;

13And for the land of my people, where thorns will come up; even for all the houses of joy in the glad town.

14For the fair houses will have no man living in them; the town which was full of noise will become a waste; the hill and the watchtower will be unpeopled for ever, a joy for the asses of the woods, a place of food for the flocks;

15Till the spirit comes on us from on high, and the waste land becomes a fertile field, and the fertile field is changed into a wood.

16Then in the waste land there will be an upright rule, and righteousness will have its place in the fertile field.

17And the work of righteousness will be peace; and the effect of an upright rule will be to take away fear for ever.

18And my people will be living in peace, in houses where there is no fear, and in quiet resting-places.

19But the tall trees will come down with a great fall, and the town will be low in a low place.

20Happy are you who are planting seed by all the waters, and sending out the ox and the ass.

Isaiah 33

1Ho! you who make waste those who did not make you waste; acting falsely to those who were not false to you. When you have come to an end of wasting, you will be made waste, and after your false acts, they will do the same to you.

2O Lord, have mercy on us; for we have been waiting for your help: be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of trouble.

3At the loud noise the peoples have gone in flight; at your coming up the nations have gone in all directions.

4And the goods taken in war will be got together like the massing of young locusts; men will be rushing on them like the rushing of locusts.

5The Lord is lifted up; his place is on high: he has made Zion full of righteousness and true religion.

6And she will have no more fear of change, being full of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge: the fear of the Lord is her wealth.

7See, the men of war are sorrowing outside the town: those who came looking for peace are weeping bitterly.

8The highways are waste, no man is journeying there: the agreement is broken, he has made sport of the towns, he has no thought for man.

9The earth is sorrowing and wasting away; Lebanon is put to shame and has become waste; Sharon is like the Arabah; and in Bashan and Carmel the leaves are falling.

10Now will I come forward, says the Lord; now will I be lifted up; now will my power be seen.

11Your designs will be without profit, and their effect will be nothing: you will be burned up by the fire of my breath.

12And the peoples will be like the burning of chalk: as thorns cut down, which are burned in the fire.

13Give ear, you who are far off, to what I have done: see my power, you who are near.

14The sinners in Zion are full of fear; the haters of God are shaking with wonder. Who among us may keep his place before the burning fire? who among us may see the eternal burnings?

15He whose ways are true, and whose words are upright; he who gives no thought to the profits of false acts, whose hands have not taken rewards, who will have no part in putting men to death, and whose eyes are shut against evil;

16He will have a place on high: he will be safely shut in by the high rocks: his bread will be given to him; his waters will be certain.

17Your eyes will see the king in his glory: they will be looking on a far-stretching land.

18Your heart will give thought to the cause of your fear: where is the scribe, where is he who made a record of the payments, where is he by whom the towers were numbered?

19Never again will you see the cruel people, a people whose tongue has no sense for you; whose language is strange to you.

20Let your eyes be resting on Zion, the town of our holy feasts: you will see Jerusalem, a quiet resting-place, a tent which will not be moved, whose tent-pins will never be pulled up, and whose cords will never be broken.

21But there the Lord will be with us in his glory, … wide rivers and streams; where no boat will go with blades, and no fair ship will be sailing.

22For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our law-giver, the Lord is our king; he will be our saviour.

23Your cords have become loose; they were not able to make strong the support of their sails, the sail was not stretched out: then the blind will take much property, the feeble-footed will make division of the goods of war.

24And the men of Zion will not say, I am ill: for its people will have forgiveness for their sin.

1 Timothy 1

1Paul, an Apostle of Jesus Christ, by the order of God our Saviour and Christ Jesus our hope;

2To Timothy, my true child in the faith: Grace, mercy, peace, from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

3It was my desire, when I went on into Macedonia, that you might make a stop at Ephesus, to give orders to certain men not to put forward a different teaching,

4Or to give attention to stories and long lists of generations, from which come questionings and doubts, in place of God’s ordered way of life which is in faith;

5But the effect of the order is love coming from a clean heart, and a knowledge of what is right, and true faith:

6From which some have been turned away, giving themselves to foolish talking;

7Desiring to be teachers of the law, though they have no knowledge of what they say or of the statements which they make so certainly.

8We are conscious that the law is good, if a man makes a right use of it,

9With the knowledge that the law is made, not for the upright man, but for those who have no respect for law and order, for evil men and sinners, for the unholy and those who have no religion, for those who put their fathers or mothers to death, for takers of life,

10For those who go after loose women, for those with unnatural desires, for those who take men prisoners, who make false statements and false oaths, and those who do any other things against the right teaching,

11Which may be seen in the good news of the glory of the great God, which was given into my care.

12I give praise to him who gave me power, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he took me to be true, making me his servant,

13Though I had said violent words against God, and done cruel acts, causing great trouble: but I was given mercy, because I did it without knowledge, not having faith;

14And the grace of our Lord was very great, with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

15It is a true saying, in which all may put their faith, that Christ Jesus came into the world to give salvation to sinners, of whom I am the chief:

16But for this reason I was given mercy, so that in me, the chief of sinners, Jesus Christ might make clear all his mercy, as an example to those who in the future would have faith in him to eternal life.

17Now to the King eternal, ever-living, unseen, the only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. So be it.

18This order I give to you, Timothy my son, in harmony with the words of the prophets about you, so that by them you may be strong, fighting the good fight,

19Keeping faith, and being conscious of well-doing; for some, by not doing these things, have gone wrong in relation to the faith:

20Such are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have given up to Satan, so that they may say no more evil words against God.

February 11

Exodus 5

1And after that, Moses and Aaron came to Pharaoh, and said, The Lord, the God of Israel, says, Let my people go so that they may keep a feast to me in the waste land.

2And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord, to whose voice I am to give ear and let Israel go? I have no knowledge of the Lord and I will not let Israel go.

3And they said, The God of the Hebrews has come to us: let us then go three days’ journey into the waste land to make an offering to the Lord our God, so that he may not send death on us by disease or the sword.

4And the king of Egypt said to them, Why do you, Moses and Aaron, take the people away from their work? get back to your work.

5And Pharaoh said, Truly, the people of the land are increasing in number, and you are keeping them back from their work.

6The same day Pharaoh gave orders to the overseers and those who were responsible for the work, saying,

7Give these men no more dry stems for their brick-making as you have been doing; let them go and get the material for themselves.

8But see that they make the same number of bricks as before, and no less: for they have no love for work; and so they are crying out and saying, Let us go and make an offering to our God.

9Give the men harder work, and see that they do it; let them not give attention to false words.

10And the overseers of the people and their responsible men went out and said to the people, Pharaoh says, I will give you no more dry stems.

11Go yourselves and get dry stems wherever you are able; for your work is not to be any less.

12So the people were sent in all directions through the land of Egypt to get dry grass for stems.

13And the overseers went on driving them and saying, Do your full day’s work as before when there were dry stems for you.

14And the responsible men of the children of Israel, whom Pharaoh’s overseers had put over them, were given blows, and they said to them, Why have you not done your regular work, in making bricks as before?

15Then the responsible men of the children of Israel came to Pharaoh, protesting and saying, Why are you acting in this way to your servants?

16They give us no dry stems and they say to us, Make bricks: and they give your servants blows; but it is your people who are in the wrong.

17But he said, You have no love for work: that is why you say, Let us go and make an offering to the Lord.

18Go now, get back to your work; no dry stems will be given to you, but you are to make the full number of bricks.

19Then the responsible men of the children of Israel saw that they were purposing evil when they said, The number of bricks which you have to make every day will be no less than before.

20And they came face to face with Moses and Aaron, who were in their way when they came out from Pharaoh:

21And they said to them, May the Lord take note of you and be your judge; for you have given Pharaoh and his servants a bad opinion of us, putting a sword in their hands for our destruction.

22And Moses went back to the Lord and said, Lord, why have you done evil to this people? why have you sent me?

23For from the time when I came to Pharaoh to put your words before him, he has done evil to this people, and you have given them no help.

Exodus 6:1-27

1And the Lord said to Moses, Now you will see what I am about to do to Pharaoh; for by a strong hand he will be forced to let them go, driving them out of his land because of my outstretched arm.

2And God said to Moses, I am Yahweh:

3I let myself be seen by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as God, the Ruler of all; but they had no knowledge of my name Yahweh.

4And I made an agreement with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their wanderings.

5And truly my ears are open to the cry of the children of Israel whom the Egyptians keep under their yoke; and I have kept in mind my agreement.

6Say then to the children of Israel, I am Yahweh, and I will take you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians, and make you safe from their power, and will make you free by the strength of my arm after great punishments.

7And I will take you to be my people and I will be your God; and you will be certain that I am the Lord your God, who takes you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.

8And I will be your guide into the land which I made an oath to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it to you for your heritage: I am Yahweh.

9And Moses said these words to the children of Israel, but they gave no attention to him, because of the grief of their spirit and the cruel weight of their work.

10And the Lord said to Moses,

11Go in and say to Pharaoh, king of Egypt, that he is to let the children of Israel go out of his land.

12And Moses, answering the Lord, said, See, the children of Israel will not give ear to me; how then will Pharaoh give ear to me, whose lips are unclean?

13And the word of the Lord came to Moses and Aaron, with orders for the children of Israel and for Pharaoh, king of Egypt, to take the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt.

14These are the heads of their fathers’ families: the sons of Reuben the oldest son of Israel: Hanoch and Pallu, Hezron and Carmi: these are the families of Reuben.

15And the sons of Simeon: Jemuel and Jamin and Ohad and Jachin and Zohar and Shaul, the son of a woman of Canaan: these are the families of Simeon.

16And these are the names of the sons of Levi in the order of their generations: Gershon and Kohath and Merari: and the years of Levi’s life were a hundred and thirty-seven.

17The sons of Gershon: Libni and Shimei, in the order of their families.

18And the sons of Kohath: Amram and Izhar and Hebron and Uzziel: and the years of Kohath’s life were a hundred and thirty-three.

19And the sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi: these are the families of the Levites, in the order of their generations.

20And Amram took Jochebed, his father’s sister, as wife; and she gave birth to Aaron and Moses: and the years of Amram’s life were a hundred and thirty-seven.

21And the sons of Izhar: Korah and Nepheg and Zichri.

22And the sons of Uzziel: Mishael and Elzaphan and Sithri.

23And Aaron took as his wife Elisheba, the daughter of Amminadab, the sister of Nahshon; and she gave birth to Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar.

24And the sons of Korah: Assir and Elkanah and Abiasaph: these are the families of the Korahites.

25And Eleazar, Aaron’s son, took as his wife one of the daughters of Putiel; and she gave birth to Phinehas. These are the heads of the families of the Levites, in the order of their families.

26These are the same Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord said, Take the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt in their armies.

27These are the men who gave orders to Pharaoh to let the children of Israel go out of Egypt: these are the same Moses and Aaron.

Proverbs 1

1The wise sayings of Solomon, the son of David, king of Israel.

2To have knowledge of wise teaching; to be clear about the words of reason:

3To be trained in the ways of wisdom, in righteousness and judging truly and straight behaviour:

4To make the simple-minded sharp, and to give the young man knowledge, and serious purpose:

5(The wise man, hearing, will get greater learning, and the acts of the man of good sense will be wisely guided:)

6To get the sense of wise sayings and secrets, and of the words of the wise and their dark sayings.

7The fear of the Lord is the start of knowledge: but the foolish have no use for wisdom and teaching.

8My son, give ear to the training of your father, and do not give up the teaching of your mother:

9For they will be a crown of grace for your head, and chain-ornaments about your neck.

10My son, if sinners would take you out of the right way, do not go with them.

11If they say, Come with us; let us make designs against the good, waiting secretly for the upright, without cause;

12Let us overcome them living, like the underworld, and in their strength, as those who go down to death;

13Goods of great price will be ours, our houses will be full of wealth;

14Take your chance with us, and we will all have one money-bag:

15My son, do not go with them; keep your feet from their ways:

16For their feet are running after evil, and they are quick to take a man’s life.

17Truly, to no purpose is the net stretched out before the eyes of the bird:

18And they are secretly waiting for their blood and making ready destruction for themselves.

19Such is the fate of everyone who goes in search of profit; it takes away the life of its owners.

20Wisdom is crying out in the street; her voice is loud in the open places;

21Her words are sounding in the meeting-places, and in the doorways of the town:

22How long, you simple ones, will foolish things be dear to you? and pride a delight to the haters of authority? how long will the foolish go on hating knowledge?

23Be turned again by my sharp words: see, I will send the flow of my spirit on you, and make my words clear to you.

24Because your ears were shut to my voice; no one gave attention to my out-stretched hand;

25You were not controlled by my guiding, and would have nothing to do with my sharp words:

26So in the day of your trouble I will be laughing; I will make sport of your fear;

27When your fear comes on you like a storm, and your trouble like a rushing wind; when pain and sorrow come on you.

28Then I will give no answer to their cries; searching for me early, they will not see me:

29For they were haters of knowledge, and did not give their hearts to the fear of the Lord:

30They had no desire for my teaching, and my words of protest were as nothing to them.

31So the fruit of their way will be their food, and with the designs of their hearts they will be made full.

32For the turning back of the simple from teaching will be the cause of their death, and the peace of the foolish will be their destruction.

33But whoever gives ear to me will take his rest safely, living in peace without fear of evil.

Hebrews 8

1Now of the things we are saying this is the chief point: We have such a high priest, who has taken his place at the right hand of God’s high seat of glory in heaven,

2As a servant of the holy things and of the true Tent, which was put up by God, not by man.

3Now every high priest is given authority to take to God the things which are given and to make offerings; so that it is necessary for this man, like them, to have something for an offering.

4If he had been on earth he would not have been a priest at all, because there are other priests who make the offerings ordered by the law;

5Being servants of that which is a copy and an image of the things in heaven, as Moses, when he was about to make the Tent, had special orders from God: for, See, he said, that you make everything like the design which you saw in the mountain.

6But now his position as priest is higher. because through him God has made a better agreement with man, based on the giving of better things.

7For if that first agreement had been as good as possible, there would have been no place for a second.

8For, protesting against them, he says, See, the days are coming when I will make a new agreement with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah;

9Not like the agreement which I made with their fathers when I took them by the hand, to be their guide out of the land of Egypt; for they did not keep the agreement with me, and I gave them up, says the Lord.

10For this is the agreement which I will make with the people of Israel after those days: I will put my laws into their minds, writing them in their hearts: and I will be their God, and they will be my people:

11And there will be no need for every man to be teaching his brother, or his neighbour, saying, This is the knowledge of the Lord: for they will all have knowledge of me, great and small.

12And I will have mercy on their evil-doing, and I will not keep their sins in mind.

13When he says, A new agreement, he has made the first agreement old. But anything which is getting old and past use will not be seen much longer.

January 25

Genesis 32

1And on his way Jacob came face to face with the angels of God.

2And when he saw them he said, This is the army of God: so he gave that place the name of Mahanaim.

3Now Jacob sent servants before him to Esau, his brother, in the land of Seir, the country of Edom;

4And he gave them orders to say these words to Esau: Your servant Jacob says, Till now I have been living with Laban:

5And I have oxen and asses and flocks and men-servants and women-servants: and I have sent to give my lord news of these things so that I may have grace in his eyes.

6When the servants came back they said, We have seen your brother Esau and he is coming out to you, and four hundred men with him.

7Then Jacob was in great fear and trouble of mind: and he put all the people and the flocks and the herds and the camels into two groups;

8And said, If Esau, meeting one group, makes an attack on them, the others will get away safely.

9Then Jacob said, O God of my father Abraham, the God of my father Isaac, the Lord who said to me, Go back to your country and your family and I will be good to you:

10I am less than nothing in comparison with all your mercies and your faith to me your servant; for with only my stick in my hand I went across Jordan, and now I have become two armies.

11Be my saviour from the hand of Esau, my brother: for my fear is that he will make an attack on me, putting to death mother and child.

12And you said, Truly, I will be good to you, and make your seed like the sand of the sea which may not be numbered.

13Then he put up his tent there for the night; and from among his goods he took, as an offering for his brother Esau,

14Two hundred she-goats and twenty he-goats, two hundred females and twenty males from the sheep,

15Thirty camels with their young ones, forty cows, ten oxen, twenty asses, and ten young asses.

16These he gave to his servants, every herd by itself, and he said to his servants, Go on before me, and let there be a space between one herd and another.

17And he gave orders to the first, saying, When my brother Esau comes to you and says, Whose servant are you, and where are you going, and whose are these herds?

18Then say to him, These are your servant Jacob’s; they are an offering for my lord, for Esau; and he himself is coming after us.

19And he gave the same orders to the second and the third and to all those who were with the herds, saying, This is what you are to say to Esau when you see him;

20And you are to say further, Jacob, your servant, is coming after us. For he said to himself, I will take away his wrath by the offering which I have sent on, and then I will come before him: it may be that I will have grace in his eyes.

21So the servants with the offerings went on in front, and he himself took his rest that night in the tents with his people.

22And in the night he got up, and taking with him his two wives and the two servant-women and his eleven children, he went over the river Jabbok.

23He took them and sent them over the stream with all he had.

24Then Jacob was by himself; and a man was fighting with him till dawn.

25But when the man saw that he was not able to overcome Jacob, he gave him a blow in the hollow part of his leg, so that his leg was damaged.

26And he said to him, Let me go now, for the dawn is near. But Jacob said, I will not let you go till you have given me your blessing.

27Then he said, What is your name? And he said, Jacob.

28And he said, Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel: for in your fight with God and with men you have overcome.

29Then Jacob said, What is your name? And he said, What is my name to you? Then he gave him a blessing.

30And Jacob gave that place the name of Peniel, saying, I have seen God face to face, and still I am living.

31And while he was going past Peniel, the sun came up. And he went with unequal steps because of his damaged leg.

32For this reason the children of Israel, even today, never take that muscle in the hollow of the leg as food, because the hollow of Jacob’s leg was touched.

Genesis 33

1Then Jacob, lifting up his eyes, saw Esau coming with his four hundred men. So he made a division of the children between Leah and Rachel and the two women-servants.

2He put the servants and their children in front, Leah and her children after them, and Rachel and Joseph at the back.

3And he himself, going before them, went down on his face to the earth seven times till he came near his brother.

4Then Esau came running up to him, and folding him in his arms, gave him a kiss: and the two of them were overcome with weeping.

5Then Esau, lifting up his eyes, saw the women and the children, and said, Who are these with you? And he said, The children whom God in his mercy has given to your servant.

6Then the servants and their children came near, and went down on their faces.

7And Leah came near with her children, and then Joseph and Rachel, and they did the same.

8And he said, What were all those herds which I saw on the way? And Jacob said, They were an offering so that I might have grace in my lord’s eyes.

9But Esau said, I have enough; keep what is yours, my brother, for yourself.

10And Jacob said, Not so; but if I have grace in your eyes, take them as a sign of my love, for I have seen your face as one may see the face of God, and you have been pleased with me.

11Take my offering then, with my blessing; for God has been very good to me and I have enough: so at his strong request, he took it.

12And he said, Let us go on our journey together, and I will go in front.

13But Jacob said, My lord may see that the children are only small, and there are young ones in my flocks and herds: one day’s over-driving will be the destruction of all the flock.

14Do you, my lord, go on before your servant; I will come on slowly, at the rate at which the cattle and the children are able to go, till I come to my lord at Seir.

15And Esau said, Then keep some of my men with you. And he said, What need is there for that, if my lord is pleased with me?

16So Esau, turning back that day, went on his way to Seir.

17And Jacob went on to Succoth, where he made a house for himself and put up tents for his cattle: for this reason the place was named Succoth.

18So Jacob came safely from Paddan-aram to the town of Shechem in the land of Canaan, and put up his tents near the town.

19And for a hundred bits of money he got from the children of Hamor, the builder of Shechem, the field in which he had put up his tents.

20And there he put up an altar, naming it El, the God of Israel.

Psalms 25

Of David.

1 To you, O Lord, my soul is lifted up.

2O my God, I have put my faith in you, let me not be shamed; let not my haters be glorying over me.

3Let no servant of yours be put to shame; may those be shamed who are false without cause.

4Make your steps clear to me, O Lord; give me knowledge of your ways.

5Be my guide and teacher in the true way; for you are the God of my salvation; I am waiting for your word all the day.

6O Lord, keep in mind your pity and your mercies; for they have been from the earliest times.

7Do not keep in mind my sins when I was young, or my wrongdoing: let your memory of me be full of mercy, O Lord, because of your righteousness.

8Good and upright is the Lord: so he will be the teacher of sinners in the way.

9He will be an upright guide to the poor in spirit: he will make his way clear to them.

10All the ways of the Lord are mercy and good faith for those who keep his agreement and his witness.

11Because of your name, O Lord, let me have forgiveness for my sin, which is very great.

12If a man has the fear of the Lord, the Lord will be his teacher in the way of his pleasure.

13His soul will be full of good things, and his seed will have the earth for its heritage.

14The secret of the Lord is with those in whose hearts is the fear of him; he will make his agreement clear to them.

15My eyes are turned to the Lord at all times; for he will take my feet out of the net.

16Be turned to me, and have mercy on me; for I am troubled and have no helper.

17The troubles of my heart are increased: O take me out of my sorrows.

18Give thought to my grief and my pain; and take away all my sins.

19See how those who are against me are increased, for bitter is their hate of me.

20O keep my soul, and take me out of danger: let me not be shamed, for I have put my faith in you.

21For my clean and upright ways keep me safe, because my hope is in you.

22Give Israel salvation, O God, out of all his troubles.

Luke 19:1-27

1And he went into Jericho, and when he was going through it,

2A man, named Zacchaeus, who was the chief tax-farmer, and a man of wealth,

3Made an attempt to get a view of Jesus, and was not able to do so, because of the people, for he was a small man.

4And he went quickly in front of them and got up into a tree to see him, for he was going that way.

5And when Jesus came to the place, looking up, he said to him, Zacchaeus, be quick and come down, for I am coming to your house today.

6And he came down quickly, and took him into his house with joy.

7And when they saw it, they were all angry, saying, He has gone into the house of a sinner.

8And Zacchaeus, waiting before him, said to the Lord, See, Lord, half of my goods I give to the poor, and if I have taken anything from anyone wrongly, I give him back four times as much.

9And Jesus said to him, Today salvation has come to this house, for even he is a son of Abraham.

10For the Son of man came to make search for those who are wandering from the way, and to be their Saviour.

11And while they were giving ear to these words, he made another story for them, because he was near Jerusalem, and because they were of the opinion that the kingdom of God was coming straight away.

12So he said, A certain man of high birth went into a far-away country to get a kingdom for himself, and to come back.

13And he sent for ten of his servants and gave them ten pounds and said to them, Do business with this till I come.

14But his people had no love for him, and sent representatives after him, saying, We will not have this man for our ruler.

15And when he came back again, having got his kingdom, he gave orders for those servants to whom he had given the money to come to him, so that he might have an account of what business they had done.

16And the first came before him, saying, Lord, your pound has made ten pounds.

17And he said to him, You have done well, O good servant: because you have done well in a small thing you will have authority over ten towns.

18And another came, saying, Your pound has made five pounds.

19And he said, You will be ruler over five towns.

20And another came, saying, Lord, here is your pound, which I put away in a cloth;

21Because I was in fear of you, for you are a hard man: you take up what you have not put down, and get in grain where you have not put seed.

22He said to him, By the words of your mouth you will be judged, you bad servant. You had knowledge that I am a hard man, taking up what I have not put down and getting in grain where I have not put seed;

23Why then did you not put my money in a bank, so that when I came I would get it back with interest?

24And he said to the others who were near, Take the pound away from him, and give it to the man who has ten.

25And they say to him, Lord, he has ten pounds.

26And I say to you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

27And as for those who were against me, who would not have me for their ruler, let them come here, and be put to death before me.

January 8

Genesis 15

1After these things, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, Have no fear, Abram: I will keep you safe, and great will be your reward.

2And Abram said, What will you give me? for I have no child and this Eliezer of Damascus will have all my wealth after me.

3And Abram said, You have given me no child, and a servant in my house will get the heritage.

4Then said the Lord, This man will not get the heritage, but a son of your body will have your property after you.

5And he took him out into the open air, and said to him, Let your eyes be lifted to heaven, and see if the stars may be numbered; even so will your seed be.

6And he had faith in the Lord, and it was put to his account as righteousness.

7And he said to him, I am the Lord, who took you from Ur of the Chaldees, to give you this land for your heritage.

8And he said, O Lord God, how may I be certain that it will be mine?

9And he said, Take a young cow of three years old, and a she-goat of three years old, and a sheep of three years old, and a dove and a young pigeon.

10All these he took, cutting them in two and putting one half opposite the other, but not cutting the birds in two.

11And evil birds came down on the bodies, but Abram sent them away.

12Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep came on Abram, and a dark cloud of fear.

13And he said to Abram, Truly, your seed will be living in a land which is not theirs, as servants to a people who will be cruel to them for four hundred years;

14But I will be the judge of that nation whose servants they are, and they will come out from among them with great wealth.

15As for you, you will go to your fathers in peace; at the end of a long life you will be put in your last resting-place.

16And in the fourth generation they will come back here; for at present the sin of the Amorite is not full.

17Then when the sun went down and it was dark, he saw a smoking fire and a flaming light which went between the parts of the bodies.

18In that day the Lord made an agreement with Abram, and said, To your seed have I given this land from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates:

19The Kenite, the Kenizzite, and the Kadmonite,

20And the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Rephaim,

21And the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Girgashite, and the Jebusite.

Psalms 8

To the chief music-maker on the Gittith. A Psalm. Of David.

1 O Lord, our Lord, whose glory is higher than the heavens, how noble is your name in all the earth!

2You have made clear your strength even out of the mouths of babies at the breast, because of those who are against you; so that you may put to shame the cruel and violent man.

3When I see your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have put in their places;

4What is man, that you keep him in mind? the son of man, that you take him into account?

5For you have made him only a little lower than the gods, crowning him with glory and honour.

6You have made him ruler over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet;

7All sheep and oxen, and all the beasts of the field;

8The birds of the air and the fish of the sea, and whatever goes through the deep waters of the seas.

9O Lord, our Lord, how noble is your name in all the earth!

Luke 9:1-27

1And getting the twelve together, he gave them power and authority over all evil spirits and over diseases, to make them well.

2And he sent them out to be preachers of the kingdom of God, and to make well those who were ill.

3And he said to them, Take nothing for your journey, no stick or bag or bread or money, and do not take two coats.

4And if you go into a house, let that house be your resting-place till you go away.

5And if any people will not take you in, when you go away from that town, put off its dust from your feet for a witness against them.

6And they went away, journeying through all the towns, preaching the good news and making people free from diseases in all places.

7Now Herod the king had news of all these things: and he was in doubt, because it was said by some people that John had come back from the dead;

8And by some, that Elijah had come; and by others, that one of the old prophets had come back to life.

9And Herod said, I put John to death: but who is this, of whom such stories are given to me? And he had a desire to see him.

10And the twelve, when they came back, gave him an account of what they had done. And he took them with him and went away from the people to a town named Beth-saida.

11But the people, getting news of it, went after him: and he was pleased to see them, and gave them teaching about the kingdom of God, and made those well who were in need of it.

12And the day went on; and the twelve came to him and said, Send these people away so that they may go into the towns and the country round about and get resting-places and food for themselves, for we are in a waste place.

13But he said, Give them food yourselves. And they said, We have only five cakes of bread and two fishes, if we do not go and get food for all these people.

14For there were about five thousand men. And he said to his disciples, Make them be seated in groups, about fifty to a group.

15And they did so, and made them all be seated.

16And he took the five cakes of bread and the two fishes and, looking up to heaven, he said words of blessing over them, and when they had been broken, he gave them to the disciples to give to the people.

17And they all took the food and had enough; and they took up of the broken bits which were over, twelve baskets full.

18And it came about that when he was in prayer, by himself, and the disciples were with him, he put a question to them, saying, Who do the people say I am?

19And they, answering, said, John the Baptist; but others say Elijah; and others, that one of the old prophets has come back.

20And he said, But who do you say that I am? And Peter, answering, said, The Christ of God.

21But he gave them special orders, not to say this to any man;

22Saying, The Son of man will undergo much and be put on one side by the rulers and the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and be put to death, and on the third day he will come back to life.

23And he said to them all, If any man has a desire to come after me, let him give up all, and take up his cross every day, and come after me.

24For whoever has a desire to keep his life will have it taken from him, but whoever gives up his life because of me, will keep it.

25For what profit will a man have if he gets all the world, but undergoes loss or destruction himself?

26For if any man has a feeling of shame because of me or of my words, the Son of man will have shame because of him when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.

27But truly I say to you, Some of those who are here now will have no taste of death till they see the kingdom of God.

December 25

Isaiah 60

1Up! let your face be bright, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord is shining on you.

2For truly, the earth will be dark, and the peoples veiled in blackest night; but the Lord will be shining on you, and his glory will be seen among you.

3And nations will come to your light, and kings to your bright dawn.

4Let your eyes be lifted up, and see: they are all coming together to you: your sons will come from far, and your daughters taken with loving care.

5Then you will see, and be bright with joy, and your heart will be shaking with increase of delight: for the produce of the sea will be turned to you, the wealth of the nations will come to you.

6You will be full of camel-trains, even the young camels of Midian and Ephah; all from Sheba will come, with gold and spices, giving word of the great acts of the Lord.

7All the flocks of Kedar will come together to you, the sheep of Nebaioth will be ready for your need; they will be pleasing offerings on my altar, and my house of prayer will be beautiful.

8Who are these coming like a cloud, like a flight of doves to their windows?

9Vessels of the sea-lands are waiting for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, so that your sons may come from far, and their silver and gold with them, to the place of the name of the Lord your God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he has made you beautiful.

10And men from strange countries will be building up your walls, and their kings will be your servants: for in my wrath I sent punishment on you, but in my grace I have had mercy on you.

11Your doors will be open at all times; they will not be shut day or night; so that men may come into you with the wealth of the nations, with their kings at their head.

12For the nation or kingdom which will not be your servant will come to destruction; such nations will be completely waste.

13The glory of Lebanon will come to you, the cypress, the plane, and the sherbin-tree together, to make my holy place beautiful; and the resting-place of my feet will be full of glory.

14And the sons of those who were cruel to you will come before you with bent heads; and those who made sport of you will go down on their faces at your feet; and you will be named, The Town of the Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

15And though you were turned away from, and hated, and had no helper, I will make you a pride for ever, a joy from generation to generation.

16And you will take the milk of the nations, flowing from the breast of kings; and you will see that I, the Lord, am your saviour, and he who takes up your cause, the Strong One of Jacob.

17In place of brass, I will give gold, and for iron silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron: and I will make Peace your judge, and Righteousness your overseer.

18Violent acts will no longer be seen in your land, wasting or destruction in your limits; but your walls will be named, Salvation, and your doors Praise.

19The sun will not be your light by day, and the moon will no longer be bright for you by night: but the Lord will be to you an eternal light, and your God your glory.

20Your sun will never again go down, or your moon keep back her light: for the Lord will be your eternal light, and the days of your sorrow will be ended.

21Your people will all be upright, the land will be their heritage for ever; the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, to be for my glory.

22The smallest of their families will become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I, the Lord, will make it come quickly in its time.

Ezekiel 37

1The hand of the Lord had been on me, and he took me out in the spirit of the Lord and put me down in the middle of the valley; and it was full of bones;

2And he made me go past them round about: and I saw that there was a very great number of them on the face of the wide valley, and they were very dry.

3And he said to me, Son of man, is it possible for these bones to come to life? And I made answer, and said, It is for you to say, O Lord.

4And again he said to me, Be a prophet to these bones, and say to them, O you dry bones, give ear to the word of the Lord.

5This is what the Lord has said to these bones: See, I will make breath come into you so that you may come to life;

6And I will put muscles on you and make flesh come on you, and put skin over you, and breath into you, so that you may have life; and you will be certain that I am the Lord.

7So I gave the word as I was ordered: and at my words there was a shaking of the earth, and the bones came together, bone to bone.

8And looking I saw that there were muscles on them and flesh came up, and they were covered with skin: but there was no breath in them.

9And he said to me, Be a prophet to the wind, be a prophet, son of man, and say to the wind, The Lord has said: Come from the four winds, O wind, breathing on these dead so that they may come to life.

10And I gave the word at his orders, and breath came into them, and they came to life and got up on their feet, a very great army.

11Then he said to me, Son of man, these bones are all the children of Israel: and see, they are saying, Our bones have become dry our hope is gone, we are cut off completely.

12For this cause be a prophet to them, and say, This is what the Lord has said: See, I am opening the resting-places of your dead, and I will make you come up out of your resting-places, O my people; and I will take you into the land of Israel.

13And you will be certain that I am the Lord by my opening the resting-places of your dead and making you come up out of your resting-places, O my people.

14And I will put my spirit in you, so that you may come to life, and I will give you a rest in your land: and you will be certain that I the Lord have said it and have done it, says the Lord.

15And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

16And you, son of man, take one stick, writing on it, For Judah and for the children of Israel who are in his company: then take another stick, writing on it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and all the children of Israel who are in his company:

17Then, joining them one to another, make them one stick, so that they may be one in your hand.

18And when the children of your people say to you, Will you not make clear to us what these things have to do with us?

19Then say to them, This is what the Lord has said: See, I am taking the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel who are in his company; and I will put it on the stick of Judah and make them one stick, and they will be one in my hand.

20And the sticks with your writing on them will be in your hand before their eyes.

21And say to them, These are the words of the Lord: See, I am taking the children of Israel from among the nations where they have gone, and will get them together on every side, and take them into their land:

22And I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king will be king over them all: and they will no longer be two nations, and will no longer be parted into two kingdoms:

23And they will no longer make themselves unclean with their images or with their hated things or with any of their sins: but I will give them salvation from all their turning away in which they have done evil, and will make them clean; and they will be to me a people, and I will be to them a God.

24And my servant David will be king over them; and they will all have one keeper: and they will be guided by my orders and will keep my rules and do them.

25And they will be living in the land which I gave to Jacob, my servant, in which your fathers were living; and they will go on living there, they and their children and their children’s children, for ever: and David, my servant, will be their ruler for ever.

26And I will make an agreement of peace with them: it will be an eternal agreement with them: and I will have mercy on them and make their numbers great, and will put my holy place among them for ever.

27And my House will be over them; and I will be to them a God, and they will be to me a people.

28And the nations will be certain that I who make Israel holy am the Lord, when my holy place is among them for ever.

Luke 2:1-20

1Now it came about in those days that an order went out from Caesar Augustus that there was to be a numbering of all the world.

2This was the first numbering, which was made when Quirinius was ruler of Syria.

3And all men went to be numbered, everyone to his town.

4And Joseph went up from Galilee, out of the town of Nazareth, into Judaea, to Beth-lehem, the town of David, because he was of the house and family of David,

5To be put on the list with Mary, his future wife, who was about to become a mother.

6And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth.

7And she had her first son; and folding him in linen, she put him to rest in the place where the cattle had their food, because there was no room for them in the house.

8And in the same country there were keepers of sheep in the fields, watching over their flock by night.

9And an angel of the Lord came to them, and the glory of the Lord was shining round about them: and fear came on them.

10And the angel said, Have no fear; for truly, I give you good news of great joy which will be for all the people:

11For on this day, in the town of David, a Saviour has come to birth, who is Christ the Lord.

12And this is the sign to you: you will see a young child folded in linen, in the place where the cattle have their food.

13And suddenly there was with the angel a great band of spirits from heaven, giving praise to God, and saying,

14Glory to God in the highest, and on the earth peace among men with whom he is well pleased.

15And when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the keepers of the sheep said to one another, Let us go now to Beth-lehem, and see this thing which has come about, which the Lord has made clear to us.

16And they came quickly, and saw Mary and Joseph, and the child in the place where the cattle had their food.

17And when they saw it, they gave them an account of the things which had been said to them about the child.

18And all those to whose ears it came were full of wonder at the things said by the keepers of the sheep.

19But Mary kept all these words in her heart, and gave much thought to them.

20Then the keepers of the sheep went back, giving glory and praise to God for all the things which had come to their ears and which they had seen, as it had been said to them.

December 15

Isaiah 50

1This is the word of the Lord: Where is the statement which I gave your mother when I put her away? or to which of my creditors have I given you for money? It was for your sins that you were given into the hands of others, and for your evil-doing was your mother put away.

2Why, then, when I came, was there no man? and no one to give answer to my voice? has my hand become feeble, so that it is unable to take up your cause? or have I no power to make you free? See, at my word the sea becomes dry, I make the rivers a waste land: their fish are dead for need of water, and make an evil smell.

3By me the heavens are clothed with black, and I make haircloth their robe.

4The Lord God has given me the tongue of those who are experienced, so that I may be able to give the word a special sense for the feeble: every morning my ear is open to his teaching, like those who are experienced:

5And I have not put myself against him, or let my heart be turned back from him.

6I was offering my back to those who gave me blows, and my face to those who were pulling out my hair: I did not keep my face covered from marks of shame.

7For the Lord God is my helper; I will not be put to shame: so I have made my face like a rock, and I am certain that he will give me my right.

8He who takes up my cause is near; who will go to law with me? let us come together before the judge: who is against me? let him come near to me.

9See, the Lord God is my helper; who will give a decision against me? truly, all of them will become old like a robe; they will be food for the worm.

10Who among you has the fear of the Lord, giving ear to the voice of his servant who has been walking in the dark and has no light? Let him put his faith in the name of the Lord, looking to his God for support.

11See, all you who make a fire, arming yourselves with burning branches: go in the flame of your fire, and among the branches you have put a light to. This will you have from my hand, you will make your bed in sorrow.

Ezekiel 21

1And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

2Son of man, let your face be turned to Jerusalem, let your words be dropped in the direction of her holy place, and be a prophet against the land of Israel;

3And say to the land of Israel, These are the words of the Lord: See, I am against you, and I will take my sword out of its cover, cutting off from you the upright and the evil.

4Because I am going to have the upright and the evil cut off from you, for this cause my sword will go out from its cover against all flesh from the south to the north:

5And all flesh will see that I the Lord have taken my sword out of its cover: and it will never go back.

6Make sounds of grief, son of man; with body bent and a bitter heart make sounds of grief before their eyes.

7And when they say to you, Why are you making sounds of grief? then say, Because of the news, for it is coming: and every heart will become soft, and all hands will be feeble, and every spirit will be burning low, and all knees will be turned to water: see, it is coming and it will be done, says the Lord.

8And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

9Son of man, say as a prophet, These are the words of the Lord: Say, A sword, a sword which has been made sharp and polished:

10It has been made sharp to give death; it is polished so that it may be like a thunder-flame: …

11And I have given it to the polisher so that it may be taken in the hand: he has made the sword sharp, he has had it polished, to put it into the hand of him who gives death.

12Give loud cries and make sounds of grief, O son of man: for it has come on my people, it has come on all the rulers of Israel: fear of the sword has come on my people: for this cause give signs of grief.

13…

14So then, son of man, be a prophet, and put your hands together with a loud sound, and give two blows with the sword, and even three; it is the sword of those who are wounded, even the sword of the wounded; the great sword which goes round about them.

15In order that hearts may become soft, and the number of those who are falling may be increased, I have sent death by the sword against all their doors: you are made like a flame, you are polished for death.

16Be pointed to the right, to the left, wherever your edge is ordered.

17And I will put my hands together with a loud sound, and I will let my wrath have rest: I the Lord have said it.

18And the word of the Lord came to me again, saying,

19And you, son of man, have two ways marked out, so that the sword of the king of Babylon may come; let the two of them come out of one land: and let there be a pillar at the top of the road:

20Put a pillar at the top of the road for the sword to come to Rabbah in the land of the children of Ammon, and to Judah and to Jerusalem in the middle of her.

21For the king of Babylon took his place at the parting of the ways, at the top of the two roads, to make use of secret arts: shaking the arrows this way and that, he put questions to the images of his gods, he took note of the inner parts of dead beasts.

22At his right hand was the fate of Jerusalem, to give orders for destruction, to send up the war-cry, to put engines of war against the doors, lifting up earthworks, building walls.

23And this answer given by secret arts will seem false to those who have given their oaths and have let them be broken: but he will keep the memory of evil-doing so that they may be taken.

24For this cause the Lord has said: Because you have made your evil-doing come to mind by the uncovering of your wrongdoing, causing your sins to be seen in all your evil-doings; because you have come to mind, you will be taken in them.

25And you, O evil one, wounded to death, O ruler of Israel, whose day has come in the time of the last punishment;

26This is what the Lord has said: Take away the holy head-dress, take off the crown: this will not be again: let that which is low be lifted up, and that which is high be made low.

27I will let it be overturned, overturned, overturned: this will not be again till he comes whose right it is; and I will give it to him.

28And you, son of man, say as a prophet, This is what the Lord has said about the children of Ammon and about their shame: Say, A sword, even a sword let loose, polished for death, to make it shining so that it may be like a flame:

29Your vision is to no purpose, your use of secret arts gives a false answer, to put it on the necks of evil-doers who are wounded to death, whose day has come, in the time of the last punishment.

30Go back into your cover. In the place where you were made, in the land from which you were taken, I will be your judge.

31And I will let loose my burning passion on you, breathing out on you the fire of my wrath: and I will give you up into the hands of men like beasts, trained to destruction.

32You will be food for the fire; your blood will be drained out in the land; there will be no more memory of you: for I the Lord have said it.

Ezekiel 22

1And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

2And you, son of man, will you be a judge, will you be a judge of the town of blood? then make clear to her all her disgusting ways.

3And you are to say, This is what the Lord has said: A town causing blood to be drained out in her streets so that her time may come, and making images in her to make her unclean!

4You are responsible for the blood drained out by you, and you are unclean through the images which you have made; and you have made your day come near, and the time of your judging has come; for this cause I have made you a name of shame to the nations and a cause of laughing to all countries.

5Those who are near and those who are far from you will make sport of you; your name is unclean, you are full of sounds of fear.

6See, the rulers of Israel, every one in his family, have been causing death in you.

7In you they have had no respect for father and mother; in you they have been cruel to the man from a strange land; in you they have done wrong to the child without a father and to the widow.

8You have made little of my holy things, and have made my Sabbaths unclean.

9In you there are men who say evil of others, causing death; in you they have taken the flesh with the blood for food; in your streets they have put evil designs into effect.

10In you they have let the shame of their fathers be seen; in you they have done wrong to a woman at the time when she was unclean.

11And in you one man has done what was disgusting with his neighbour’s wife; and another has made his daughter-in-law unclean; and another has done wrong to his sister, his father’s daughter.

12In you they have taken rewards as the price of blood; you have taken interest and great profits, and you have taken away your neighbours’ goods by force, and have not kept me in mind, says the Lord.

13See, then, I have made my hands come together in wrath against your taking of goods by force and against the blood which has been flowing in you.

14Will your heart be high or your hands strong in the days when I take you in hand? I the Lord have said it and will do it.

15And I will send you in flight among the nations and wandering among the countries; and I will completely take away out of you everything which is unclean.

16And you will be made low before the eyes of the nations; and it will be clear to you that I am the Lord.

17And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

18Son of man, the children of Israel have become like the poorest sort of waste metal to me: they are all silver and brass and tin and iron and lead mixed with waste.

19For this cause the Lord has said: Because you have all become waste metal, see, I will get you together inside Jerusalem.

20As they put silver and brass and iron and lead and tin together inside the oven, heating up the fire on it to make it soft; so will I get you together in my wrath and in my passion, and, heating the fire with my breath, will make you soft.

21Yes, I will take you, breathing on you the fire of my wrath, and you will become soft in it.

22As silver becomes soft in the oven, so you will become soft in it; and you will be certain that I the Lord have let loose my passion on you.

23And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

24Son of man, say to her, You are a land on which no rain or thunderstorm has come in the day of wrath.

25Her rulers in her are like a loud-voiced lion violently taking his food; they have made a meal of souls; they have taken wealth and valued property; they have made great the number of widows in her.

26Her priests have been acting violently against my law; they have made my holy things unclean: they have made no division between what is holy and what is common, and they have not made it clear that the unclean is different from the clean, and their eyes have been shut to my Sabbaths, and I am not honoured among them.

27Her rulers in her are like wolves violently taking their food; putting men to death and causing the destruction of souls, so that they may get their profit.

28And her prophets have been using whitewash, seeing foolish visions and making false use of secret arts, saying, This is what the Lord has said, when the Lord has said nothing.

29The people of the land have been acting cruelly, taking men’s goods by force; they have been hard on the poor and those in need, and have done wrong to the man from a strange land.

30And I was looking for a man among them who would make up the wall and take his station in the broken place before me for the land, so that I might not send destruction on it: but there was no one.

31And I let loose my passion on them, and have put an end to them in the fire of my wrath: I have made the punishment of their ways come on their heads, says the Lord.

Philippians 2:12-30

12So then, my loved ones, as you have at all times done what I say, not only when I am present, but now much more when I am not with you, give yourselves to working out your salvation with fear in your hearts;

13For it is God who is the cause of your desires and of your acts, for his good pleasure.

14Do all things without protests and arguments;

15So that you may be holy and gentle, children of God without sin in a twisted and foolish generation, among whom you are seen as lights in the world,

16Offering the word of life; so that I may have glory in you in the day of Christ, because my running was not for nothing and my work was not without effect.

17And even if I am offered like a drink offering, giving myself for the cause and work of your faith, I am glad and have joy with you all:

18And in the same way do you be glad and have a part in my joy.

19But I am hoping in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you before long, so that I may be comforted when I have news of you.

20For I have no man of like mind who will truly have care for you.

21For they all go after what is theirs, not after the things of Christ.

22But his quality is clear to you; how, as a child is to its father, so he was a help to me in the work of the good news.

23Him then I am hoping to send as quickly as possible, when I am able to see how things will go for me:

24But I have faith in the Lord that I myself will come before long.

25But it seemed to me necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, who has taken part with me in the work and in the fight, and your servant, sent by you for help in my need;

26Because his heart was with you all, and he was greatly troubled because you had news that he was ill:

27For in fact he was ill almost to death: but God had mercy on him; and not only on him but on me, so that I might not have grief on grief.

28I have sent him, then, the more gladly, so that when you see him again, you may be happy and I may have the less sorrow.

29So take him to your hearts in the Lord with all joy, and give honour to such as he is:

30Because for the work of Christ he was near to death, putting his life in danger to make your care for me complete.

December 12

Isaiah 47

1Come and take your seat in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; come down from your seat of power, and take your place on the earth, O daughter of the Chaldaeans: for you will never again seem soft and delicate.

2Take the crushing-stones and get the meal crushed: take off your veil, put away your robe, let your legs be uncovered, go through the rivers.

3The shame of your unclothed condition will be seen by all: I will give punishment without mercy,

4Says the Lord who takes up our cause; the Lord of armies is his name, the Holy One of Israel.

5Be seated in the dark without a word, O daughter of the Chaldaeans: for you will no longer be named, The Queen of Kingdoms.

6I was angry with my people, I put shame on my heritage, and gave them into your hands: you had no mercy on them; you put a cruel yoke on those who were old;

7And you said, I will be a queen for ever: you did not give attention to these things, and did not keep in mind what would come after.

8So now take note of this, you who are given up to pleasure, living without fear of evil, saying in your heart, I am, and there is no one like me; I will never be a widow, or have my children taken from me.

9But these two things will come on you suddenly in one day, the loss of children and of husband: in full measure they will come on you, for all your secret arts, and all your wonders.

10For you had faith in your evil-doing; you said, No one sees me; by your wisdom and knowledge you have been turned out of the way: and you have said in your heart, I am, and there is no other.

11Because of this evil will come on you, which may not be turned away for any price: and trouble will overtake you, from which no money will give salvation: destruction will come on you suddenly, without your knowledge.

12Go on now with your secret arts, and all your wonder-working, to which you have given yourself up from your earliest days; it may be that they will be of profit to you, or by them you may put fear into your attackers.

13But your mind is troubled by the number of your guides: let them now come forward for your salvation: the measurers of the heavens, the watchers of the stars, and those who are able to say from month to month what things are coming on you.

14Truly, they have become like dry stems, they have been burned in the fire; they are not able to keep themselves safe from the power of the flame: it is not a coal for warming them, or a fire by which a man may be seated.

15Small profit have you had from those who, from your earliest days, got great profit out of you; they have gone in flight, every one straight before him, and you have no saviour.

Ezekiel 18

1The word of the Lord came to me again, saying,

2Why do you make use of this saying about the land of Israel, The fathers have been tasting bitter grapes and the children’s teeth are on edge?

3By my life, says the Lord, you will no longer have this saying in Israel.

4See, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so the soul of the son is mine: death will be the fate of the sinner’s soul.

5But if a man is upright, living rightly and doing righteousness,

6And has not taken flesh with the blood for food, or given worship to the images of the children of Israel; if he has not had connection with his neighbour’s wife, or come near to a woman at the time when she is unclean;

7And has done no wrong to any, but has given back to the debtor what is his, and has taken no one’s goods by force, and has given food to him who was in need of it, and clothing to him who was without it;

8And has not given his money out at interest or taken great profits, and, turning his hand from evil-doing, has kept faith between man and man,

9And has been guided by my rules and has kept my laws and done them: he is upright, life will certainly be his, says the Lord.

10If he has a son who is a thief, a taker of life, who does any of these things,

11Who has taken flesh with the blood as food, and has had connection with his neighbour’s wife,

12Has done wrong to the poor and to him who is in need, and taken property by force, and has not given back to one in his debt what is his, and has given worship to images and has done disgusting things,

13And has given out his money at interest and taken great profits: he will certainly not go on living: he has done all these disgusting things: death will certainly be his fate; his blood will be on him.

14Now if he has a son who sees all his father’s sins which he has done, and in fear does not do the same:

15Who has not taken the flesh with the blood for food, or given worship to the images of the children of Israel, and has not had connection with his neighbour’s wife,

16Or done wrong to any, or taken anything from one in his debt, or taken goods by force, but has given food to him who was in need of it, and clothing to him who was without it;

17Who has kept his hand from evil-doing and has not taken interest or great profits, who has done my orders and been guided by my rules: he will certainly not be put to death for the evil-doing of his father; life will certainly be his.

18As for his father, because he was cruel, took goods by force, and did what is not good among his people, truly, death will overtake him in his evil-doing.

19But you say, Why does not the son undergo punishment for the evil-doing of the father? When the son has done what is ordered and right, and has kept my rules and done them, life will certainly be his.

20The soul which does sin will be put to death: the son will not be made responsible for the evil-doing of the father, or the father for the evil-doing of the son; the righteousness of the upright will be on himself, and the evil-doing of the evil-doer on himself.

21But if the evil-doer, turning away from all the sins which he has done, keeps my rules and does what is ordered and right, life will certainly be his; death will not be his fate.

22Not one of the sins which he has done will be kept in memory against him: in the righteousness which he has done he will have life.

23Have I any pleasure in the death of the evil-doer? says the Lord: am I not pleased if he is turned from his way so that he may have life?

24But when the upright man, turning away from his righteousness, does evil, like all the disgusting things which the evil man does, will he have life? Not one of his upright acts will be kept in memory: in the wrong which he has done and in his sin death will overtake him.

25But you say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Give ear, now, O children of Israel; is my way not equal? are not your ways unequal?

26When the upright man, turning away from his righteousness, does evil, death will overtake him; in the evil which he has done death will overtake him.

27Again, when the evil-doer, turning away from the evil he has done, does what is ordered and right, he will have life for his soul.

28Because he had fear and was turned away from all the wrong which he had done, life will certainly be his, death will not be his fate.

29But still the children of Israel say, The way of the Lord is not equal. O children of Israel, are my ways not equal? are not your ways unequal?

30For this cause I will be your judge, O children of Israel, judging every man by his ways, says the Lord. Come back and be turned from all your sins; so that they may not be the cause of your falling into evil.

31Put away all your evil-doing in which you have done sin; and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit: why are you desiring death, O children of Israel?

32For I have no pleasure in the death of him on whom death comes, says the Lord: be turned back then, and have life.

Philippians 1:1-11

1Paul and Timothy, servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, with the Bishops and Deacons of the church:

2Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

3I give praise to my God at every memory of you,

4And in all my prayers for you all, making my request with joy,

5Because of your help in giving the good news from the first day till now;

6For I am certain of this very thing, that he by whom the good work was started in you will make it complete till the day of Jesus Christ:

7So it is right for me to take thought for you all in this way, because I have you in my heart; for in my chains, and in my arguments before the judges in support of the good news, making clear that it is true, you all have your part with me in grace.

8For God is my witness, how my love goes out to you all in the loving mercies of Christ Jesus.

9And my prayer is that you may be increased more and more in knowledge and experience;

10So that you may give your approval to the best things; that you may be true and without wrongdoing till the day of Christ;

11Being full of the fruits of righteousness, which are through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.