March 19, 2017
March 19, 2017
Psalm 95 (CEB)
1Come, let’s sing out loud to the Lord! Let’s raise a joyful shout to the rock of our salvation! 2Let’s come before him with thanks! Let’s shout songs of joy to him! 3The Lord is a great God, the great king over all other gods. 4The earth’s depths are in his hands; the mountain heights belong to him; 5the sea, which he made, is his along with the dry ground, which his own hands formed. 6Come, let’s worship and bow down! Let’s kneel before the Lord, our maker! 7He is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, the sheep in his hands. If only you would listen to his voice right now! 8“Don’t harden your hearts like you did at Meribah, like you did when you were at Massah, in the wilderness, 9when your ancestors tested me and scrutinized me, even though they had already seen my acts. 10For forty years I despised that generation; I said, ‘These people have twisted hearts. They don’t know my ways.’ 11So in anger I swore: ‘They will never enter my place of rest!’”
John 4:19-26 (CEB)
19The woman said, “Sir, I see that you are a prophet. 20Our ancestors worshipped on this mountain, but you and your people say that it is necessary to worship in Jerusalem.” 21Jesus said to her, “Believe me, woman, the time is coming when you and your people will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22You and your people worship what you don’t know; we worship what we know because salvation is from the Jews. 23But the time is coming—and is here!—when true worshippers will worship in spirit and truth. The Father looks for those who worship him this way. 24God is spirit, and it is necessary to worship God in spirit and truth.”25The woman said, “I know that the Messiah is coming, the one who is called the Christ. When he comes, he will teach everything to us.” 26Jesus said to her, “I Am—the one who speaks with you.”
March 13, 2017
March 12, 2017
A Pilgrimage Song
1I raise my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? 2My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth. 3God won’t let your foot slip. Your protector won’t fall asleep on the job. 4No! Israel’s protector never sleeps or rests! 5The Lord is your protector; the Lord is your shade right beside you. 6The sun won’t strike you during the day; neither will the moon at night. 7The Lord will protect you from all evil; God will protect your very life. 8The Lord will protect you on your journeys— whether going or coming— from now until forever from now.
Matthew 17:1-9 (CEB)
1Six days later Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and brought them to the top of a very high mountain. 2He was transformed in front of them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. 3Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Jesus. 4Peter reacted to all of this by saying to Jesus, “Lord, it’s good that we’re here. If you want, I’ll make three shrines: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” 5While he was still speaking, look, a bright cloud overshadowed them. A voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son whom I dearly love. I am very pleased with him. Listen to him!” 6Hearing this, the disciples fell on their faces, filled with awe. 7But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” 8When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus. 9As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, “Don’t tell anybody about the vision until the Human One[a] is raised from the dead.”
March 13, 2017
March 5, 2017
Psalm 32 (CEB)
1The one whose wrongdoing is forgiven, whose sin is covered over, is truly happy! 2The one the Lord doesn’t consider guilty—in whose spirit there is no dishonesty—that one is truly happy! 3When I kept quiet, my bones wore out; I was groaning all day long—every day, every night!—4because your hand was heavy upon me. My energy was sapped as if in a summer drought. Selah 5So I admitted my sin to you; I didn’t conceal my guilt. “I’ll confess my sins to the Lord, ” is what I said. Then you removed the guilt of my sin. Selah 6That’s why all the faithful should pray to you during troubled times, so that a great flood of water won’t reach them. 7You are my secret hideout! You protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of rescue! Selah 8I will instruct you and teach you about the direction you should go. I’ll advise you and keep my eye on you. 9Don’t be like some senseless horse or mule, whose movement must be controlled with a bit and a bridle. Don’t be anything like that! 10The pain of the wicked is severe, but faithful love surrounds the one who trusts the Lord. 11You who are righteous, rejoice in the Lord and be glad! All you whose hearts are right, sing out in joy!
Genesis 3:6-7 (CEB)
6The woman saw that the tree was beautiful with delicious food and that the tree would provide wisdom, so she took some of its fruit and ate it, and also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7Then they both saw clearly and knew that they were naked. So they sewed fig leaves together and made garments for themselves.
February 27, 2017
February 26, 2017
Nehemiah 12:27-30, 13:14, 13:22
Dedication of the Wall
27When it was time for the dedication of Jerusalem’s wall, they sought out the Levites in all the places where they lived in order to bring them to Jerusalem to celebrate the dedication with joy, with thanks and singing, and with cymbals, harps, and lyres. 28The singers also gathered together both from the region around Jerusalem and from the villages of the Netophathites, 29also from Beth-hagilgal and from the region of Geba and Azmaveth, because the singers had built themselves villages around Jerusalem. 30After the priests and the Levites purified themselves, they purified the people, the gates, and the wall.
14Remember me, my God, concerning this. Don’t erase my good deeds that I have done for my God’s house and for its services.
22I also commanded the Levites to purify themselves and to come and guard the gates in order to keep the Sabbath day holy. Remember this also in my favor, my God, and spare me according to the greatness of your mercy.
February 21, 2017
February 19, 2017
3So I sent messengers to tell them, “I’m doing important work, so I can’t come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it to come down to you?” 4They sent me a message like this four times, and every time I gave them a similar reply.
February 13, 2017
February 12, 2017
7The Levites—Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, and Pelaiah—helped the people to understand the Instruction while the people remained in their places. 8They read aloud from the scroll, the Instruction from God, explaining and interpreting it so the people could understand what they heard. 9Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all of the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God. Don’t mourn or weep.” They said this because all the people wept when they heard the words of the Instruction. 10“Go, eat rich food, and drink something sweet,” he said to them, “and send portions of this to any who have nothing ready! This day is holy to our Lord. Don’t be sad, because the joy from the Lord is your strength!” 11The Levites also calmed all of the people, saying, “Be quiet, for this day is holy. Don’t be sad!” 12Then all of the people went to eat and to drink, to send portions, and to have a great celebration, because they understood what had been said to them.
February 9, 2017
February 5, 2017
4When I heard this news, I sat down and wept. I mourned for days, fasting and praying before the God of heaven. 5I said: “Lord God of heaven, great and awesome God, you are the one who keeps covenant and is truly faithful to those who love you and keep your commandments. 6Let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer of your servant, which I now pray before you night and day for your servants, the people of Israel. “I confess the sins of the people of Israel, which we have committed against you. Both I and my family have sinned. 7We have wronged you greatly. We haven’t kept the commandments, the statutes, and the ordinances that you commanded your servant Moses. 8“Remember the word that you gave to your servant Moses when you said, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples. 9But if you return to me and keep my commandments by really doing them, then, even though your outcasts live under distant skies, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place that I have chosen as a dwelling for my name.’ 10They are your servants and your people. They are the ones whom you have redeemed by your great power and your strong hand. 11“Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in honoring your name. Please give success to your servant today and grant him favor in the presence of this man!” Cupbearer’s plea At that time, I was a cupbearer to the king.
February 2, 2017
January 29, 2017
A request from James and John
35James and John, Zebedee’s sons, came to Jesus and said, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask.” 36“What do you want me to do for you?” he asked. 37They said, “Allow one of us to sit on your right and the other on your left when you enter your glory.” 38Jesus replied, “You don’t know what you’re asking! Can you drink the cup I drink or receive the baptism I receive?” 39“We can,” they answered. Jesus said, “You will drink the cup I drink and receive the baptism I receive, 40but to sit at my right or left hand isn’t mine to give. It belongs to those for whom it has been prepared.” 41Now when the other ten disciples heard about this, they became angry with James and John. 42Jesus called them over and said, “You know that the ones who are considered the rulers by the Gentiles show off their authority over them and their high-ranking officials order them around. 43But that’s not the way it will be with you. Whoever wants to be great among you will be your servant. 44Whoever wants to be first among you will be the slave of all, 45for the Human One didn’t come to be served but rather to serve and to give his life to liberate many people.”
January 24, 2017
January 22, 2017
1When Joseph had been taken down to Egypt, Potiphar, Pharaoh’s chief officer, the commander of the royal guard and an Egyptian, purchased him from the Ishmaelites who had brought him down there. 2The Lord was with Joseph, and he became a successful man and served in his Egyptian master’s household. 3His master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made everything he did successful. 4Potiphar thought highly of Joseph, and Joseph became his assistant; he appointed Joseph head of his household and put everything he had under Joseph’s supervision. 5From the time he appointed Joseph head of his household and of everything he had, the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s household because of Joseph. The Lord blessed everything he had, both in the household and in the field.
January 24, 2017
January 15, 2017
15God spoke to Noah, 16“Go out of the ark, you and your wife, your sons, and your sons’ wives with you. 17Bring out with you all the animals of every kind—birds, livestock, everything crawling on the ground—so that they may populate the earth, be fertile, and multiply on the earth.” 18So Noah went out of the ark with his sons, his wife, and his sons’ wives. 19All the animals, all the livestock, all the birds, and everything crawling on the ground, came out of the ark by their families.
God’s promise for the earth
20Noah built an altar to the Lord. He took some of the clean large animals and some of the clean birds, and placed entirely burned offerings on the altar. 21The Lord smelled the pleasing scent, and the Lord thought to himself, I will not curse the fertile land anymore because of human beings since the ideas of the human mind are evil from their youth. I will never again destroy every living thing as I have done. 22As long as the earth exists, seedtime and harvest, cold and hot, summer and autumn, day and night will not cease.