Old Testament: Song of Solomon 1–4 Song of Solomon 1–4 (Listen) 1 The Song of Songs, which is Solomon's. The Bride Confesses Her Love She1 2 Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine;3 your anointing oils are fragrant; your name is oil poured out; therefore virgins love you.4 Draw me after you; let us run. The king has brought me into his chambers. Others We will exult and rejoice in you; we will extol your love more than wine; rightly do they love you. She 5 I am very dark, but lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem, like the tents of Kedar, like the curtains of Solomon.6 Do not gaze at me because I am dark, because the sun has looked upon me. My mother's sons were angry with me; they made me keeper of the vineyards, but my own vineyard I have not kept!7 Tell me, you whom my soul loves, where you pasture your flock, where you make it lie down at noon; for why should I be like one who veils herself beside the flocks of your companions? Solomon and His Bride Delight in Each Other He 8 If you do not know, O most beautiful among women, follow in the tracks of the flock, and pasture your young goats beside the shepherds' tents. 9 I compare you, my love, to a mare among Pharaoh's chariots.10 Your cheeks are lovely with ornaments, your neck with strings of jewels. Others 11 We will make for you2 ornaments of gold, studded with silver. She 12 While the king was on his couch, my nard gave forth its fragrance.13 My beloved is to me a sachet of myrrh that lies between my breasts.14 My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms in the vineyards of Engedi. He 15 Behold, you are beautiful, my love; behold, you are beautiful; your eyes are doves. She 16 Behold, you are beautiful, my beloved, truly delightful. Our couch is green;17 the beams of our house are cedar; our rafters are pine. 2 I am a rose3 of Sharon, a lily of the valleys. He 2 As a lily among brambles, so is my love among the young women. She 3 As an apple tree among the trees of the forest, so is my beloved among the young men. With great delight I sat in his shadow, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.4 He brought me to the banqueting house,4 and his banner over me was love.5 Sustain me with raisins; refresh me with apples, for I am sick with love.6 His left hand is under my head, and his right hand embraces me!7 I adjure you,5 O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases. The Bride Adores Her Beloved 8 The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes, leaping over the mountains, bounding over the hills.9 My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, there he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows, looking through the lattice.10 My beloved speaks and says to me: “Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away,11 for behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone.12 The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing6 has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.13 The fig tree ripens its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.14 O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, in the crannies of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice, for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.15 Catch the foxes7 for us, the little foxes that spoil the vineyards, for our vineyards are in blossom.” 16 My beloved is mine, and I am his; he grazes8 among the lilies.17 Until the day breathes and the shadows flee, turn, my beloved, be like a gazelle or a young stag on cleft mountains.9 The Bride's Dream 3 On my bed by night I sought him whom my soul loves; I sought him, but found him not.2 I will rise now and go about the city, in the streets and in the squares; I will seek him whom my soul loves. I sought him, but found him not.3 The watchmen found me as they went about in the city. “Have you seen him whom my soul loves?”4 Scarcely had I passed them when I found him whom my soul loves. I held him, and would not let him go until I had brought him into my mother's house, and into the chamber of her who conceived me.5 I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases. Solomon Arrives for the Wedding 6 What is that coming up from the wilderness like columns of smoke, perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, with all the fragrant powders of a merchant?7 Behold, it is the litter10 of Solomon! Around it are sixty mighty men, some of the mighty men of Israel,8 all of them wearing swords and expert in war, each with his sword at his thigh, against terror by night.9 King Solomon made himself a carriage11 from the wood of Lebanon.10 He made its posts of silver, its back of gold, its seat of purple; its interior was inlaid with love by the daughters of Jerusalem.11 Go out, O daughters of Zion, and look upon King Solomon, with the crown with which his mother crowned him on the day of his wedding, on the day of the gladness of his heart. Solomon Admires His Bride's Beauty He 4 Behold, you are beautiful, my love, behold, you are beautiful! Your eyes are doves behind your veil. Your hair is like a flock of goats leaping down the slopes of Gilead.2 Your teeth are like a flock of shorn ewes that have come up from the washing, all of which bear twins, and not one among them has lost its young.3 Your lips are like a scarlet thread, and your mouth is lovely. Your cheeks are like halves of a pomegranate behind your veil.4 Your neck is like the tower of David, built in rows of stone;12 on it hang a thousand shields, all of them shields of warriors.5 Your two breasts are like two fawns, twins of a gazelle, that graze among the lilies.6 Until the day breathes and the shadows flee, I will go away to the mountain of myrrh and the hill of frankincense.7 You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you.8 Come with me from Lebanon, my bride; come with me from Lebanon. Depart13 from the peak of Amana, from the peak of Senir and Hermon, from the dens of lions, from the mountains of leopards. 9 You have captivated my heart, my sister, my bride; you have captivated my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.10 How beautiful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much better is your love than wine, and the fragrance of your oils than any spice!11 Your lips drip nectar, my bride; honey and milk are under your tongue; the fragrance of your garments is like the fragrance of Lebanon.12 A garden locked is my sister, my bride, a spring locked, a fountain sealed.13 Your shoots are an orchard of pomegranates with all choicest fruits, henna with nard,14 nard and saffron, calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense, myrrh and aloes, with all choice spices—15 a garden fountain, a well of living water, and flowing streams from Lebanon. 16 Awake, O north wind, and come, O south wind! Blow upon my garden, let its spices flow. Together in the Garden of Love She Let my beloved come to his garden, and eat its choicest fruits. Footnotes  1:2 The translators have added speaker identifications based on the gender and number of the Hebrew words  1:11 The Hebrew for you is feminine singular  2:1 Probably a bulb, such as a crocus, asphodel, or narcissus  2:4 Hebrew the house of wine  2:7 That is, I put you on oath; so throughout the Song  2:12 Or pruning  2:15 Or jackals  2:16 Or he pastures his flock  2:17 Or mountains of Bether  3:7 That is, the couch on which servants carry a king  3:9 Or sedan chair  4:4 The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain  4:8 Or Look (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 79 Psalm 79 (Listen) How Long, O Lord? A Psalm of Asaph. 79 O God, the nations have come into your inheritance; they have defiled your holy temple; they have laid Jerusalem in ruins.2 They have given the bodies of your servants to the birds of the heavens for food, the flesh of your faithful to the beasts of the earth.3 They have poured out their blood like water all around Jerusalem, and there was no one to bury them.4 We have become a taunt to our neighbors, mocked and derided by those around us. 5 How long, O LORD? Will you be angry forever? Will your jealousy burn like fire?6 Pour out your anger on the nations that do not know you, and on the kingdoms that do not call upon your name!7 For they have devoured Jacob and laid waste his habitation. 8 Do not remember against us our former iniquities;1 let your compassion come speedily to meet us, for we are brought very low.9 Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for your name's sake!10 Why should the nations say, “Where is their God?” Let the avenging of the outpoured blood of your servants be known among the nations before our eyes! 11
A Growing ChurchThe church grows through the missional work of faithful followers of Jesus Christ. --- God can do amazing things through ordinary people who are empowered by the Holy Spirit. In the book of Acts, the Holy Spirit was given to all believers and the church was born. The church is God's chosen instrument in the world for sharing the good news about Jesus Christ. The book of Acts is all about the unhindered movement of God throughout the world as the gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed through the church. Empowered by the Holy Spirit, the early church was an unstoppable movement that proclaimed the Kingdom of God and Jesus Christ as the only way to eternal life. Today, the church empowered by the Holy Spirit is called to continue God's redeeming work in the world by fulfilling God's mission of making Jesus known to the ends of the earth. Acts of the Apostles 11:19-26 NLTMeanwhile, the believers who had been scattered during the persecution after Stephen's death traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch of Syria. They preached the word of God, but only to Jews. However, some of the believers who went to Antioch from Cyprus and Cyrene began preaching to the Gentiles about the Lord Jesus. The power of the Lord was with them, and a large number of these Gentiles believed and turned to the Lord. When the church at Jerusalem heard what had happened, they sent Barnabas to Antioch. When he arrived and saw this evidence of God's blessing, he was filled with joy, and he encouraged the believers to stay true to the Lord. Barnabas was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and strong in faith. And many people were brought to the Lord. Then Barnabas went on to Tarsus to look for Saul. When he found him, he brought him back to Antioch. Both of them stayed there with the church for a full year, teaching large crowds of people. (It was at Antioch that the believers were first called Christians.) 1. The church grows larger when we share the Good News of Jesus with all people. (v. 19-21) 2. The church grows stronger when we encourage one another in the faith. (v. 22-24) 3. The church grows deeper through the teaching of God's Word. (v. 25-26) • • •Challenge: A growing church is one that is committed to going further on mission by sharing Jesus with all people, and going deeper in Christ together by encouraging one another, spending time in God's Word together, and by serving those in need. God, help us to be committed followers of Jesus who will stand firm in our faith as we grow stronger and deeper in Christ – who are willing to make Jesus known around the world – who desire through the Holy Spirit's presence and power at work in us, to shine the light of the gospel upon a dark world, winning others to you! Amen.
THE THESIS: We can get back on track if we get serious about examining where we left the track. THE SCRIPTURE & SCRIPTURAL RESOURCES: Jesus did not tell the apostles to distribute copies of what Jesus said to have people read, he told them to baptize people and teach them to follow His way. He told them to create church communities: Acts 2 The Holy Spirit Comes at Pentecost 2 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them. 5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren't all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,[b] 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?” 13 Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.” Peter Addresses the Crowd 14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. 15 These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning! 16 No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 17 “‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. 18 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 20 The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 21 And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'[c] 22 “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. 23 This man was handed over to you by God's deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men,[d] put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. 25 David said about him: “‘I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 26 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope, 27 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, you will not let your holy one see decay. 28 You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.'[e] 29 “Fellow Israelites, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. 30 But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. 31 Seeing what was to come, he spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah, that he was not abandoned to the realm of the dead, nor did his body see decay. 32 God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it. 33 Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. 34 For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said, “‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand 35 until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”'[f] 36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” 37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” 40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. The Fellowship of the Believers 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. THE NEWS & COMMENT: The electorate stopped applying religious and character litmus tests when hiring people for government through the vote [AUDIO] - Kammi Harris lying about the border being secure. [AUDIO] - Chuck Todd: “We're now as a nation battling a threat from within. Is the threat equal or greater than what we faced after 9/11?” Kammi Harris: “…there is an oath that we always take which is to defend and uphold our constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic.” On 9/11: Liar and DHS boss, Alejandro Mayorkas warned today of threats posed by individuals in the U.S. "radicalized to violence" by ideologies "of hate, anti-government sentiment, false narratives propagated on online platforms, even personal grievances" ALSO on 9/11: “US prosecutors may negotiate plea deal with 9/11 architect Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, other conspirators: Report.” . . . reinstitute that test at every level of government, starting in school boards and zoning commissions We made government school compulsory and allowed the government to supposedly negotiate with its big donors, the government school employee collectively known as unions [AUDIO] - Middle school teacher at @NSLA244 says she kneeled for BLM in the classroom and changed the words in the pledge. She also taught her students to protest and become activists and suggests throwing bricks at people with opposing views. . . . we are constitutionally obliged to provide for education, NOT to provide schools. Return to that, freedom involves choice, serfdom involves diktats. We let Jefferson's separation of church and state letter become imposition of state on religious expression NY Times Hit Piece On Hasidic Education Published On Eve Of NY Regents Vote To Undermine All Religious Schools; A New York Times article attacking boys' Hasidic schools was published today, on the eve of the New York State Board of Regents vote on regulations poised to undermine the way Jewish religious schools have operated for generations. The timing of The Times' attack appears planned to influence the vote. WHY did the wise-Latina do the right thing, here? If this was a Christian group, would she have also done the right thing? Could it be that God is reaching her? Maybe Justice Thomas is witnessing to her? Justice Sotomayor Stays NY State Court Order Forcing Yeshiva University To Recognize “Pride Alliance” Club -- “Yeshiva shouldn't have been forced to go all the way to the Supreme Court to receive such a commonsense ruling in favor of its First Amendment rights.” Eric Baxter, Vice President and Senior Counsel at Becket, said, “We are grateful that Justice Sotomayor stepped in to protect Yeshiva's religious liberty in this case.” We let a court pretend that not engaging in interstate commerce IS actually engaging in interstate commerce, which is what gave rise to the federalization of the states and gave teeth to the power of the extra-constitutional administrative state which has metastasized into the Deep State: Men in Black: How the Supreme Court Is Destroying America Levin in National Review (before it's permanent case of TDS) discussing the court's ever-expanding power Authoritarians come in (at least) two flavors: 42% of Republicans prefer strong unelected leaders to weak elected ones. 42% of Dems say the president should be able to remove judges whose decisions "go against the national interest." We let so-called journalists hide campaign donations behind the First Amendment NPR Skips the D-Word on Las Vegas Reporter's Killer, Alludes to Trump Instead [AUDIO] - The @EverettHerald asked the @MurraSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Gospel installment- 09-08-2022-Title -s- - 1..Jesus, the Passover and the cross.. 2..What did Jesus accomplish on the cross--Text- Matt 27-1..Continuation of Exodus 12 teaching BSGCC -133-2..Jesus died on the Passover as the Passover Lamb.-3..Two fundamental things happened that had cause and effect.-4..The Lamb died and the people were set free from their slavery..-5..In fulfillment Jesus came to usher in the Exodus and preached the cause and effect with Barabbas..-6..Barabbas was set free because God brought him a ransom..-7..When you have found the God given ransom you have to go home, you have to be set free.-8..Jesus continued to preach WITH Simon the Cyrene.. His blood was on Simon the Cyrene as he carried the cross of Christ, the blood of the Passover.. The blood that God sees.-9..Jesus continued with His sermon and justified the thief on the cross. NO ONE GOES TO HEAVEN who is not justified by Jesus..-10..Jesus capped His ministry with the soldiers who got His expensive robe of righteousness. THAT WAS PREACHING WHAT HE ACCOMPLISHED ON THE CROSS. BY HIS BLOOD HE DIVIDED HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS TO ALL THE ELECT..
Talk 11 God speaks through other Christians Welcome back after a short break. Let's remind you what we've been saying so far. We've seen that: God speaks to all humanity through his creation He spoke to Israel by the prophets He has finally spoken by his Son He speaks today through the Bible He speaks through other people - parents Why believe that God speaks to us through the Bible Tells us about Jesus Jesus believed that God speaks through scripture The apostles and early church believed… The Bible shows us the way of salvation How to understand the Bible correctly What part of the Bible are we reading – OT or NT? What is the context of the passage we are reading? Literary context Historical/sociological context Immediate context Different ways God speaks through the Bible He teaches what we should believe and how we should behave He shows us what to expect by giving us examples from the lives of God's people He encourages us by giving us many wonderful promises He directs us by bringing key verses to our attention God speaks through other people Last time: Parents Today: other Christians I suppose that if we were to ask most Christians who it is they expect God to use in speaking to them, their answer would almost certainly include preachers or pastors or prophets. And we will be dealing with these in later talks. But it's very important that we should realise that God often speaks through Christians who do not come into any of these categories. Of course, there are those who are especially gifted by God to speak for him. Ephesians 4:11, for example, mentions apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. But the New Testament also makes it clear that God expects all his people to speak for him. As I have pointed out elsewhere, there is a sense in which all God's people are prophets. The Holy Spirit can use anyone he chooses. For example, the great church at Antioch was first started by ordinary Christians spreading the word. In Acts 8:1-4 we read that, as a result of the persecution that followed the death of Stephen, the Christians were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. But they spread the word wherever they went (v.4). Acts 11:19-21 tells us: Now those who had been scattered by the persecution in connection with Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, telling the message only to Jews. Some of them, however, men from Cyprus and Cyrene, went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus. The Lord's hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord. So this church was founded, not by the apostles, who had all remained in Jerusalem (Acts 8:2), but by ordinary Christians spreading the good news of the gospel. God can speak through any one of us, and he can speak toany one of us by whomever he chooses, as the following examples from my own experience demonstrate. I have already mentioned Laurie Dixon whose testimony changed the course of my life. The year before I met Laurie, I was on holiday in the Lake District at a Baptist Summer School where I made friends with a young man named Michael Stewart. Michael told me that the following year he was planning with a couple of Christian friends to take a car and visit several countries in Europe. He asked if I would be interested in joining them. Travelling abroad was far less common in those days than it is today, and I jumped at the opportunity. So, in 1958 I found myself in Switzerland with Michael and three new friends climbing a mountain. The long climb in the heat of the August sunshine had been tiring. We were unaccustomed to this kind of exercise and the cool water of the mountain stream was inviting to our aching feet. Graham, Michael, and Daphne sat down to rest, putting their feet in the water. But it was my first visit to Switzerland, and somehow I felt that we were wasting an opportunity when there was so much to see. Leaving the others to paddle their feet, Laurie and I climbed higher following the path of the stream, but half an hour later we had had enough too. As we looked down at the others a few hundred feet below us, we realised that we had come up the hard way. To our right there was an easier way down. Gratefully we turned to take it, when suddenly, as if from nowhere, a large rock came hurtling down the mountainside toward the stream and I was directly in its path! As a fairly athletic nineteen-year-old, I should have been able to jump clear with relative ease, but I was gripped with terror, unable to move. As a Christian I might have thought of praying, but my mind refused to function. In a second it would hit me. The end had surely come. But when the rock was only about a yard away, it struck a small protusion in the ground, changed direction, and crashed into the stream below, missing me by inches! The danger was over as quickly as it had come. I heaved a sigh of inexpressible relief. Wow that was lucky! I exclaimed. Lucky, David? said Laurie who'd been watching from a few yards away. That wasn't luck. I believe God has a purpose for your life and that rock couldn't have hit you. It was that simple statement of faith that started a process of enquiry which was to lead to an experience which revolutionised my life. This man was moving in a dimension of Christianity that I knew little or nothing about. So I questioned Laurie to see if I could discover the basic difference. Although from different denominational backgrounds, I discovered that we had much in common. Doctrinally, our beliefs were almost identical. We believed the same Bible, preached the same gospel, and worshipped the same Saviour. We both knew what it meant to be a born again Christian. We had both been baptised as believers by immersion in water. Basically, we had very much in common. And yet this man had something which I didn't have, something indefinable, but very real. I asked him what it was. He started to talk about an experience he had received after his conversion - being baptised with the Holy Spirit he called it - when the Holy Spirit had come and filled him to overflowing. He said he had spoken in tongues and told me I could read about it in the book of Acts. It was at this point, however, that my interest began to wane. I certainly wanted to experience more of God in my life, but as for speaking in tongues, I frankly couldn't see the point of it. If being baptised with the Holy Spirit meant that I had to speak in tongues, I decided that I had better forget about it. And for a while I did! On returning to England, I dismissed the subject from my mind and might have ignored it forever, had it not been for the remarkable series of events which took place the following summer. Eileen, my fiancee, and I were sitting in the youth meeting at church singing from a well-known chorus book, when I happened to notice a list of books advertised on the back cover, one of which was entitled, The full blessing of Pentecost, by Dr Andrew Murray. Immediately I concluded that this book must be dealing with the subject Laurie had been talking about last year in Switzerland, and I suggested that it might be good to get it. In a few days, Eileen received a reply from the advertisers saying that the book was no longer available. A little disappointed, I returned home from Eileen's to my parents' house for lunch. As the meal was not quite ready, I went into the sitting room to wait. On entering, I happened to notice a book lying on the piano and casually picked it up - The full blessing of Pentecost by Dr Andrew Murray! But how did it get there? No one, except Eileen, knew anything of my interest in the subject. My parents did not know where the book had come from. It is true that my father had always had a large collection of books, but if it was his, he certainly had never read it, and didn't even know that he possessed it. Anyway, why wasn't it in the bookcase and how did it get on the piano? No one to this day has any idea how that book came to be there on the very day that I had thought it to be unobtainable. The answer must surely lie in the realm of the supernatural. With great anticipation, Eileen and I both read the book, and then we both began to pray fervently that we too might be baptised with the Holy Spirit. But the rest of the story must wait till later in the series. So God used Laurie Dixon to speak to me. This was not only by his words but also by his actions. No doubt we're all familiar with the expression, Actions speak louder than words. Less well known is the Latin motto, Facta non verba, which means, Deeds not words. We've already seen how God speaks to us through Jesus both by what he said and what he did. His actions as much as his words show us what God is like and how he wants us to behave. And this is how he often speaks to us today A good example of God speaking to me through the actions of another Christian is our friend Jill Cooper who used to help Eileen serve coffee on Sunday mornings at our local church. What she did was incredibly simple, but before I tell you what it was, I need to give you the background story. In February 2010 Eileen and I went to India for a month at the invitation of the Finnish Pentecostal Churches who asked me to go and teach about the Holy Spirit where they had missionaries working in Mumbai and Machilipatnam. Now while I was the Principal at Mattersey Hall Bible College we had the privilege of training many overseas students several of whom were from India, and when our former students heard about our trip, they were quick to ask us if we would visit them too so that I could preach in the numerous churches they had planted since returning from Mattersey. We, of course, were delighted to agree, but I knew that the schedule they organized for me would be quite intense and, as I have always believed in observing a Sabbath principle, I asked that one day in seven should be a rest day. However, in practice this didn't happen, as the day they scheduled as a rest day was the day we had to travel from one place to the next! As a result, and because that year the temperature in India was higher than usual, I was suffering from dehydration and to the disappointment of all concerned, a few of the meetings scheduled had to be cancelled. Apart from this, we had had a great time in India and after a few weeks back in England I thought I had fully recovered. But towards the end of April, on a preaching trip to Essex, I started to experience similar symptoms to those I'd had in India. I couldn't understand this as the temperature in England was about half what it had been in India. Without going into unnecessary detail, the next two years proved to be extremely difficult. I continued to experience similar problems every time I preached. I began to wonder if the time had come for me to give up. Then, at just the right time, Eileen and I were in Exeter at a meeting for Assemblies of God ministers and their wives. The guest preacher was John Glass, the General Superintendent of the Elim Churches. He was preaching on Jeremiah 1 when he came to verses 11-12: The word of the LORD came to me: "What do you see, Jeremiah?" "I see the branch of an almondtree," I replied. The LORD said to me, "You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled." He explained the play on words that we find in these verses – the Hebrew word for almond is very similar to the word for watch. The almond tree is among the first to blossom in spring. It's something you watch for as a sign that spring has come. Winter will surely be followed by spring because God watches over his word to see that it is fulfilled. Now in England most of us don't see an almond tree too often, so John likened it to crocuses. In his garden they're the first flowers to bloom in spring. They're the sign or guarantee that winter won't be forever. Then John broke away from his notes and said something like this: There are some of you here who are feeling that your ministry has come to an end. You have been experiencing a bleak winter, but the Lord wants you to know that it will not be forever. You will experience a new springtime. Eileen and I looked at each other. Was this for us? Surely it must be. But there were a lot of other people in that meeting. Could it be that John's prophetic word was for them and not for us? We drove home after the meeting hoping, rather than believing, that this really was a word from the Lord for us. And then, that evening, Jill Cooper arrived on our doorstep and said, I've brought you a little present. To be honest, I had bought it for someone else, but then I felt the Lord tell me to give it to you instead. What was the present? A bowl of crocuses! And without a doubt, I have experienced a new springtime in my ministry. So the Lord does speak to us through other Christians, both by their words and by their actions. And, as the story I have just told you clearly illustrates, he most certainly speaks to us through preachers. But that's the subject for next time.  See Body Builders – Gifts to make God's people grow, Chapter 3.
Old Testament: Job 35–36 Job 35–36 (Listen) Elihu Condemns Job 35 And Elihu answered and said: 2 “Do you think this to be just? Do you say, ‘It is my right before God,'3 that you ask, ‘What advantage have I? How am I better off than if I had sinned?'4 I will answer you and your friends with you.5 Look at the heavens, and see; and behold the clouds, which are higher than you.6 If you have sinned, what do you accomplish against him? And if your transgressions are multiplied, what do you do to him?7 If you are righteous, what do you give to him? Or what does he receive from your hand?8 Your wickedness concerns a man like yourself, and your righteousness a son of man. 9 “Because of the multitude of oppressions people cry out; they call for help because of the arm of the mighty.110 But none says, ‘Where is God my Maker, who gives songs in the night,11 who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens?'12 There they cry out, but he does not answer, because of the pride of evil men.13 Surely God does not hear an empty cry, nor does the Almighty regard it.14 How much less when you say that you do not see him, that the case is before him, and you are waiting for him!15 And now, because his anger does not punish, and he does not take much note of transgression,216 Job opens his mouth in empty talk; he multiplies words without knowledge.” Elihu Extols God's Greatness 36 And Elihu continued, and said: 2 “Bear with me a little, and I will show you, for I have yet something to say on God's behalf.3 I will get my knowledge from afar and ascribe righteousness to my Maker.4 For truly my words are not false; one who is perfect in knowledge is with you. 5 “Behold, God is mighty, and does not despise any; he is mighty in strength of understanding.6 He does not keep the wicked alive, but gives the afflicted their right.7 He does not withdraw his eyes from the righteous, but with kings on the throne he sets them forever, and they are exalted.8 And if they are bound in chains and caught in the cords of affliction,9 then he declares to them their work and their transgressions, that they are behaving arrogantly.10 He opens their ears to instruction and commands that they return from iniquity.11 If they listen and serve him, they complete their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasantness.12 But if they do not listen, they perish by the sword and die without knowledge. 13 “The godless in heart cherish anger; they do not cry for help when he binds them.14 They die in youth, and their life ends among the cult prostitutes.15 He delivers the afflicted by their affliction and opens their ear by adversity.16 He also allured you out of distress into a broad place where there was no cramping, and what was set on your table was full of fatness. 17 “But you are full of the judgment on the wicked; judgment and justice seize you.18 Beware lest wrath entice you into scoffing, and let not the greatness of the ransom turn you aside.19 Will your cry for help avail to keep you from distress, or all the force of your strength?20 Do not long for the night, when peoples vanish in their place.21 Take care; do not turn to iniquity, for this you have chosen rather than affliction.22 Behold, God is exalted in his power; who is a teacher like him?23 Who has prescribed for him his way, or who can say, ‘You have done wrong'? 24 “Remember to extol his work, of which men have sung.25 All mankind has looked on it; man beholds it from afar.26 Behold, God is great, and we know him not; the number of his years is unsearchable.27 For he draws up the drops of water; they distill his mist in rain,28 which the skies pour down and drop on mankind abundantly.29 Can anyone understand the spreading of the clouds, the thunderings of his pavilion?30 Behold, he scatters his lightning about him and covers the roots of the sea.31 For by these he judges peoples; he gives food in abundance.32 He covers his hands with the lightning and commands it to strike the mark.33 Its crashing declares his presence;3 the cattle also declare that he rises. Footnotes  35:9 Or the many  35:15 Theodotion, Symmachus (compare Vulgate); the meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain  36:33 Hebrew declares concerning him (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 59 Psalm 59 (Listen) Deliver Me from My Enemies To the choirmaster: according to Do Not Destroy. A Miktam1 of David, when Saul sent men to watch his house in order to kill him. 59 Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; protect me from those who rise up against me;2 deliver me from those who work evil, and save me from bloodthirsty men. 3 For behold, they lie in wait for my life; fierce men stir up strife against me. For no transgression or sin of mine, O LORD,4 for no fault of mine, they run and make ready. Awake, come to meet me, and see!5 You, LORD God of hosts, are God of Israel. Rouse yourself to punish all the nations; spare none of those who treacherously plot evil. Selah 6 Each evening they come back, howling like dogs and prowling about the city.7 There they are, bellowing with their mouths with swords in their lips— for “Who,” they think,2 “will hear us?” 8 But you, O LORD, laugh at them; you hold all the nations in derision.9 O my Strength, I will watch for you, for you, O God, are my fortress.10 My God in his steadfast love3 will meet me; God will let me look in triumph on my enemies. 11 Kill them not, lest my people forget; make them totter4 by your power and bring them down, O Lord, our shield!12 For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips, let them be trapped in their pride. For the cursing and lies that they utter,13 consume them in wrath; consume them till they are no more, that they may know that God rules over Jacob to the ends of the earth. Selah 14 Each evening they come back, howling like dogs and prowling about the city.15 They wander about for food and growl if they do not get their fill. 16 But I will sing of your strength; I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning. For you have been to me a fortress and a refuge in the day of my distress.17 O my Strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love. Footnotes  59:1 Probably a musical or liturgical term  59:7 Hebrew lacks they think  59:10 Or The God who shows me steadfast love  59:11 Or wander (ESV) New Testament: Luke 23 Luke 23 (Listen) Jesus Before Pilate 23 Then the whole company of them arose and brought him before Pilate. 2 And they began to accuse him, saying, “We found this man misleading our nation and forbidding us to give tribute to Caesar, and saying that he himself is Christ, a king.” 3 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 4 Then Pilate said to the chief priests and the crowds, “I find no guilt in this man.” 5 But they were urgent, saying, “He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, from Galilee even to this place.” Jesus Before Herod 6 When Pilate heard this, he asked whether the man was a Galilean. 7 And when he learned that he belonged to Herod's jurisdiction, he sent him over to Herod, who was himself in Jerusalem at that time. 8 When Herod saw Jesus, he was very glad, for he had long desired to see him, because he had heard about him, and he was hoping to see some sign done by him. 9 So he questioned him at some length, but he made no answer. 10 The chief priests and the scribes stood by, vehemently accusing him. 11 And Herod with his soldiers treated him with contempt and mocked him. Then, arraying him in splendid clothing, he sent him back to Pilate. 12 And Herod and Pilate became friends with each other that very day, for before this they had been at enmity with each other. 13 Pilate then called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was misleading the people. And after examining him before you, behold, I did not find this man guilty of any of your charges against him. 15 Neither did Herod, for he sent him back to us. Look, nothing deserving death has been done by him. 16 I will therefore punish and release him.”1 Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified 18 But they all cried out together, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas”—19 a man who had been thrown into prison for an insurrection started in the city and for murder. 20 Pilate addressed them once more, desiring to release Jesus, 21 but they kept shouting, “Crucify, crucify him!” 22 A third time he said to them, “Why? What evil has he done? I have found in him no guilt deserving death. I will therefore punish and release him.” 23 But they were urgent, demanding with loud cries that he should be crucified. And their voices prevailed. 24 So Pilate decided that their demand should be granted. 25 He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, for whom they asked, but he delivered Jesus over to their will. The Crucifixion 26 And as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus. 27 And there followed him a great multitude of the people and of women who were mourning and lamenting for him. 28 But turning to them Jesus said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!' 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us,' and to the hills, ‘Cover us.' 31 For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?” 32 Two others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. 33 And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. 34 And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”2 And they cast lots to divide his garments. 35 And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!” 36 The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine 37 and saying, “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!” 38 There was also an inscription over him,3 “This is the King of the Jews.” 39 One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him,4 saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!” 40 But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” 43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.” The Death of Jesus 44 It was now about the sixth hour,5 and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour,6 45 while the sun's light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46 Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. 47 Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God, saying, “Certainly this man was innocent!” 48 And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home beating their breasts. 49 And all his acquaintances and the women who had followed him from Galilee stood at a distance watching these things. Jesus Is Buried 50 Now there was a man named Joseph, from the Jewish town of Arimathea. He was a member of the council, a good and righteous man, 51 who had not consented to their decision and action; and he was looking for the kingdom of God. 52 This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 53 Then he took it down and wrapped it in a linen shroud and laid him in a tomb cut in stone, where no one had ever yet been laid. 54 It was the day of Preparation, and the Sabbath was beginning.7 55 The women who had come with him from Galilee followed and saw the tomb and how his body was laid. 56 Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment. Footnotes  23:16 Here, or after verse 19, some manuscripts add verse 17: Now he was obliged to release one man to them at the festival  23:34 Some manuscripts omit the sentence And Jesus . . . what they do  23:38 Some manuscripts add in letters of Greek and Latin and Hebrew  23:39 Or blasphemed him  23:44 That is, noon  23:44 That is, 3 p.m.  23:54 Greek was dawning (ESV)
Proper 17 First Psalm: Psalm 37:1–18 Psalm 37:1–18 (Listen) He Will Not Forsake His Saints 1 Of David. 37 Fret not yourself because of evildoers; be not envious of wrongdoers!2 For they will soon fade like the grass and wither like the green herb. 3 Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.24 Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act.6 He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday. 7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! 8 Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.9 For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land. 10 In just a little while, the wicked will be no more; though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there.11 But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace. 12 The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes his teeth at him,13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming. 14 The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those whose way is upright;15 their sword shall enter their own heart, and their bows shall be broken. 16 Better is the little that the righteous has than the abundance of many wicked.17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the LORD upholds the righteous. 18 The LORD knows the days of the blameless, and their heritage will remain forever; Footnotes  37:1 This psalm is an acrostic poem, each stanza beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet  37:3 Or and feed on faithfulness, or and find safe pasture (ESV) Second Psalm: Psalm 37:19–40 Psalm 37:19–40 (Listen) 19 they are not put to shame in evil times; in the days of famine they have abundance. 20 But the wicked will perish; the enemies of the LORD are like the glory of the pastures; they vanish—like smoke they vanish away. 21 The wicked borrows but does not pay back, but the righteous is generous and gives;22 for those blessed by the LORD1 shall inherit the land, but those cursed by him shall be cut off. 23 The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in his way;24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread.26 He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing. 27 Turn away from evil and do good; so shall you dwell forever.28 For the LORD loves justice; he will not forsake his saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.29 The righteous shall inherit the land and dwell upon it forever. 30 The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice.31 The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip. 32 The wicked watches for the righteous and seeks to put him to death.33 The LORD will not abandon him to his power or let him be condemned when he is brought to trial. 34 Wait for the LORD and keep his way, and he will exalt you to inherit the land; you will look on when the wicked are cut off. 35 I have seen a wicked, ruthless man, spreading himself like a green laurel tree.236 But he passed away,3 and behold, he was no more; though I sought him, he could not be found. 37 Mark the blameless and behold the upright, for there is a future for the man of peace.38 But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed; the future of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble.40 The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him. Footnotes  37:22 Hebrew by him  37:35 The identity of this tree is uncertain  37:36 Or But one passed by (ESV) Old Testament: Job 16:16–17:1; Job 17:13–16 Job 16:16–17:1 (Listen) 16 My face is red with weeping, and on my eyelids is deep darkness,17 although there is no violence in my hands, and my prayer is pure. 18 “O earth, cover not my blood, and let my cry find no resting place.19 Even now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and he who testifies for me is on high.20 My friends scorn me; my eye pours out tears to God,21 that he would argue the case of a man with God, as1 a son of man does with his neighbor.22 For when a few years have come I shall go the way from which I shall not return. Job Continues: Where Then Is My Hope? 17 “My spirit is broken; my days are extinct; the graveyard is ready for me. Footnotes  16:21 Hebrew and (ESV) Job 17:13–16 (Listen) 13 If I hope for Sheol as my house, if I make my bed in darkness,14 if I say to the pit, ‘You are my father,' and to the worm, ‘My mother,' or ‘My sister,'15 where then is my hope? Who will see my hope?16 Will it go down to the bars of Sheol? Shall we descend together into the dust?”1 Footnotes  17:16 Or Will they go down to the bars of Sheol? Is rest to be found together in the dust? (ESV) New Testament: Acts 13:1–12 Acts 13:1–12 (Listen) Barnabas and Saul Sent Off 13 Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger,1 Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3 Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off. Barnabas and Saul on Cyprus 4 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus. 5 When they arrived at Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. And they had John to assist them. 6 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came upon a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet named Bar-Jesus. 7 He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence, who summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God. 8 But Elymas the magician (for that is the meaning of his name) opposed them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith. 9 But Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him 10 and said, “You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord? 11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you will be blind and unable to see the sun for a time.” Immediately mist and darkness fell upon him, and he went about seeking people to lead him by the hand. 12 Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had occurred, for he was astonished at the teaching of the Lord. Footnotes  13:1 Niger is a Latin word meaning black, or dark (ESV) Gospel: John 9:1–17 John 9:1–17 (Listen) Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind 9 As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. 4 We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work. 5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” 6 Having said these things, he spit on the ground and made mud with the saliva. Then he anointed the man's eyes with the mud 7 and said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means Sent). So he went and washed and came back seeing. 8 The neighbors and those who had seen him before as a beggar were saying, “Is this not the man who used to sit and beg?” 9 Some said, “It is he.” Others said, “No, but he is like him.” He kept saying, “I am the man.” 10 So they said to him, “Then how were your eyes opened?” 11 He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud and anointed my eyes and said to me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.' So I went and washed and received my sight.” 12 They said to him, “Where is he?” He said, “I do not know.” 13 They brought to the Pharisees the man who had formerly been blind. 14 Now it was a Sabbath day when Jesus made the mud and opened his eyes. 15 So the Pharisees again asked him how he had received his sight. And he said to them, “He put mud on my eyes, and I washed, and I see.” 16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath.” But others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them. 17 So they said again to the blind man, “What do you say about him, since he has opened your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.” (ESV)
Acts 2:1-211 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.5 Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. 6 And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language. 7 And they were amazed and astonished, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? 9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, 11 both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” 12 And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.”14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. 15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel:17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;18 even on my male servants and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;20 the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.'
Mark 15:1-41 Early in the morning the chief priests with the elders, scribes, and the entire Council immediately held a consultation; and they bound Jesus and led Him away, and turned Him over to Pilate.2 Pilate questioned Him: “So You are the King of the Jews?” And He answered him, “It is as you say.” 3 And the chief priests startedaccusing Him of many things. 4 But Pilate questioned Him again, saying, “Do You offer nothing in answer? See how many charges they are bringing against You!” 5 But Jesus said nothing further in answer, so Pilate was amazed. 6 Now at the Passover Feast he used to release for them any one prisoner whom they requested. 7 And the one named Barabbas had been imprisoned with the rebels who had committed murder in the revolt. 8 And the crowd went up and began asking Pilate to do as he had been accustomed to do for them. 9 Pilate answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?”10 For he was aware that the chief priests had handed Him over because of envy. 11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to ask him to release Barabbas for them instead. 12 And responding again, Pilate said to them, “Then what shall I do with Him whom you call the King of the Jews?” 13 They shouted back, “Crucify Him!” 14 But Pilate said to them, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify Him!” 15 Intent on satisfying the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas for them, and after having Jesus flogged, he handed Him over to be crucified. 16 Now the soldiers took Him away into the palace (that is, the Praetorium), and they *called together the whole Roman cohort.17 And they *dressed Him in purple, and after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on Him; 18 and they began saluting Him: “Hail, King of the Jews!” 19 And they repeatedly beat His head with a reed and spit on Him, and kneeling, they bowed down before Him.20 And after they had mocked Him, they took the purple cloak off Him and put His own garments on Him. And they *led Him out to crucify Him. 21 And they *compelled a passer-by coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), to carry His cross. 22 Then they *brought Him to the place Golgotha, which is translated, Place of a Skull. 23 And they tried to give Him wine mixed with myrrh; but He did not take it. 24 And they *crucified Him, and *divided up His garments among themselves, casting lots for them to decide what each man would take. 25 Now it was the third hour when they crucified Him. 26 The inscription of the charge against Him read, “THE KING OF THE JEWS.” 27 And they *crucified two rebels with Him, one on His right and one on His left. 29 Those passing by were hurling abuse at Him, shaking their heads and saying, “Ha! You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save Yourself by coming down from the cross!” 31 In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes, were mocking Him among themselves and saying, “He saved others; He cannot save Himself! 32 Let thisChrist, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross, so that we may see and believe!” Those who were crucified with Him were also insulting Him. 33 When the sixth hour came, darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34 At the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabaktanei?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” 35 And when some of the bystanders heard Him, they began saying, “Look! He is calling for Elijah!” 36 And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed, and gave Him a drink, saying, “Let us see if Elijah comes to take Him down.” 37 But Jesus let out a loud cry, and died.38 And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.39 And when the centurion, who was standing right in front of Him, saw that He died in this way, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!” 40 Now there were also some women watching from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the Less and Joses, and Salome. 41 When He was in Galilee, they used to follow Him and serve Him; and there were many other women who came up with Him to Jerusalem. GIVE - The Listener's Commentary is a listener supported Bible teaching ministry made possible by the generosity of people like you. Thank you! Give here: https://www.listenerscommentary.com/give STUDY HUB - Want more than the audio? Join the study hub to access articles, maps, charts, pictures, and links to other resources to help you study the Bible for yourself. https://www.listenerscommentary.com/members-sign-up FREE EBOOK - Get the free eBook, Bible in Life, to help you learn how to read and apply the Bible well: https://www.listenerscommentary.com MORE TEACHING - For more resources and Bible teaching from John visit https://www.johnwhittaker.net
On Headlines and Punchlines we take a humorous look at news and life with friend and colleague Patrick Albanese. Then Pastor David Myles joins Bill and Rosey B. on the Monday Afternoon Mix for a rich conversation on Simon of Cyrene from Luke 23 vs 26.
Proper 17 First Psalm: Psalm 25 Psalm 25 (Listen) Teach Me Your Paths 1 Of David. 25 To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.2 O my God, in you I trust; let me not be put to shame; let not my enemies exult over me.3 Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame; they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous. 4 Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths.5 Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long. 6 Remember your mercy, O LORD, and your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.7 Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for the sake of your goodness, O LORD! 8 Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.9 He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.10 All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies. 11 For your name's sake, O LORD, pardon my guilt, for it is great.12 Who is the man who fears the LORD? Him will he instruct in the way that he should choose.13 His soul shall abide in well-being, and his offspring shall inherit the land.14 The friendship2 of the LORD is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant.15 My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net. 16 Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.17 The troubles of my heart are enlarged; bring me out of my distresses.18 Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins. 19 Consider how many are my foes, and with what violent hatred they hate me.20 Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me! Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.21 May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you. 22 Redeem Israel, O God, out of all his troubles. Footnotes  25:1 This psalm is an acrostic poem, each verse beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet  25:14 Or The secret counsel (ESV) Second Psalm: Psalm 9; Psalm 15 Psalm 9 (Listen) I Will Recount Your Wonderful Deeds 1 To the choirmaster: according to Muth-labben.2 A Psalm of David. 9 I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.2 I will be glad and exult in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High. 3 When my enemies turn back, they stumble and perish before3 your presence.4 For you have maintained my just cause; you have sat on the throne, giving righteous judgment. 5 You have rebuked the nations; you have made the wicked perish; you have blotted out their name forever and ever.6 The enemy came to an end in everlasting ruins; their cities you rooted out; the very memory of them has perished. 7 But the LORD sits enthroned forever; he has established his throne for justice,8 and he judges the world with righteousness; he judges the peoples with uprightness. 9 The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.10 And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you. 11 Sing praises to the LORD, who sits enthroned in Zion! Tell among the peoples his deeds!12 For he who avenges blood is mindful of them; he does not forget the cry of the afflicted. 13 Be gracious to me, O LORD! See my affliction from those who hate me, O you who lift me up from the gates of death,14 that I may recount all your praises, that in the gates of the daughter of Zion I may rejoice in your salvation. 15 The nations have sunk in the pit that they made; in the net that they hid, their own foot has been caught.16 The LORD has made himself known; he has executed judgment; the wicked are snared in the work of their own hands. Higgaion.4 Selah 17 The wicked shall return to Sheol, all the nations that forget God. 18 For the needy shall not always be forgotten, and the hope of the poor shall not perish forever. 19 Arise, O LORD! Let not man prevail; let the nations be judged before you!20 Put them in fear, O LORD! Let the nations know that they are but men! Selah Footnotes  9:1 Psalms 9 and 10 together follow an acrostic pattern, each stanza beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet. In the Septuagint they form one psalm  9:1 Probably a musical or liturgical term  9:3 Or because of  9:16 Probably a musical or liturgical term (ESV) Psalm 15 (Listen) Who Shall Dwell on Your Holy Hill? A Psalm of David. 15 O LORD, who shall sojourn in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 2 He who walks blamelessly and does what is right and speaks truth in his heart;3 who does not slander with his tongue and does no evil to his neighbor, nor takes up a reproach against his friend;4 in whose eyes a vile person is despised, but who honors those who fear the LORD; who swears to his own hurt and does not change;5 who does not put out his money at interest and does not take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be moved. (ESV) Old Testament: Job 12:1–6; Job 12:13–25 Job 12:1–6 (Listen) Job Replies: The Lord Has Done This 12 Then Job answered and said: 2 “No doubt you are the people, and wisdom will die with you.3 But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Who does not know such things as these?4 I am a laughingstock to my friends; I, who called to God and he answered me, a just and blameless man, am a laughingstock.5 In the thought of one who is at ease there is contempt for misfortune; it is ready for those whose feet slip.6 The tents of robbers are at peace, and those who provoke God are secure, who bring their god in their hand.1 Footnotes  12:6 The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain (ESV) Job 12:13–25 (Listen) 13 “With God1 are wisdom and might; he has counsel and understanding.14 If he tears down, none can rebuild; if he shuts a man in, none can open.15 If he withholds the waters, they dry up; if he sends them out, they overwhelm the land.16 With him are strength and sound wisdom; the deceived and the deceiver are his.17 He leads counselors away stripped, and judges he makes fools.18 He looses the bonds of kings and binds a waistcloth on their hips.19 He leads priests away stripped and overthrows the mighty.20 He deprives of speech those who are trusted and takes away the discernment of the elders.21 He pours contempt on princes and loosens the belt of the strong.22 He uncovers the deeps out of darkness and brings deep darkness to light.23 He makes nations great, and he destroys them; he enlarges nations, and leads them away.24 He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth and makes them wander in a trackless waste.25 They grope in the dark without light, and he makes them stagger like a drunken man. Footnotes  12:13 Hebrew him (ESV) New Testament: Acts 11:19–30 Acts 11:19–30 (Listen) The Church in Antioch 19 Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews. 20 But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who on coming to Antioch spoke to the Hellenists1 also, preaching the Lord Jesus. 21 And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number who believed turned to the Lord. 22 The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23 When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, 24 for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. 25 So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26 and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians. 27 Now in these days prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 And one of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine over all the world (this took place in the days of Claudius). 29 So the disciples determined, every one according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers2 living in Judea. 30 And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul. Footnotes  11:20 Or Greeks (that is, Greek-speaking non-Jews)  11:29 Or brothers and sisters (ESV) Gospel: John 8:21–32 John 8:21–32 (Listen) 21 So he said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek me, and you will die in your sin. Where I am going, you cannot come.” 22 So the Jews said, “Will he kill himself, since he says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come'?” 23 He said to them, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.” 25 So they said to him, “Who are you?” Jesus said to them, “Just what I have been telling you from the beginning. 26 I have much to say about you and much to judge, but he who sent me is true, and I declare to the world what I have heard from him.” 27 They did not understand that he had been speaking to them about the Father. 28 So Jesus said to them, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he, and that I do nothing on my own authority, but speak just as the Father taught me. 29 And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.” 30 As he was saying these things, many believed in him. The Truth Will Set You Free 31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (ESV)
Acts 13:1, 2 Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. Pastor Obed Joy Obeng is the Head Pastor of Miracle Manna Church, Kumasi. He is the Radio Pastor at Luv 99.5 FM, Kumasi of the mega program "PRAYERLINE", a network of praying believers, where thousands around the world join him as he leads them in prayers victoriously in Christ to command their morning to influence their day on Mondays to Fridays @ 2 am - 5 am. Pastor Obed also organizes a monthly all-night service dubbed BREAKTHROUGH Night at his church, where there is a massive attendance with the Spirit of God, moving and operating freely to touch lives and fulfill destinies for breakthroughs and testimonies in all facets of life. Join the man of God live on Facebook for his e-church & Prayerline on; #Pastor Obed Da Bishop #Da Bishop #Prayerline on Luv 99.5 FM
Now Stephen, a man full of God's grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people. Opposition arose, however, from members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called)—Jews of Cyrene and Alexandria as well as the provinces of Cilicia and Asia—who began to argue with Stephen. But they could not stand up against the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke. Then they secretly persuaded some men to say, “We have heard Stephen speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God.” So they stirred up the people and the elders and the teachers of the law. They seized Stephen and brought him before the Sanhedrin. They produced false witnesses, who testified, “This fellow never stops speaking against this holy place and against the law. For we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs Moses handed down to us.” All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel.
Psalms and Wisdom: Psalm 16 Psalm 16 (Listen) You Will Not Abandon My Soul A Miktam1 of David. 16 Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge.2 I say to the LORD, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.” 3 As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight.2 4 The sorrows of those who run after3 another god shall multiply; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names on my lips. 5 The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.6 The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance. 7 I bless the LORD who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me.48 I have set the LORD always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. 9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being5 rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure.10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption.6 11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Footnotes  16:1 Probably a musical or liturgical term  16:3 Or To the saints in the land, the excellent in whom is all my delight, I say:  16:4 Or who acquire  16:7 Hebrew my kidneys instruct me  16:9 Hebrew my glory  16:10 Or see the pit (ESV) Pentateuch and History: 1 Samuel 3 1 Samuel 3 (Listen) The Lord Calls Samuel 3 Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the LORD in the presence of Eli. And the word of the LORD was rare in those days; there was no frequent vision. 2 At that time Eli, whose eyesight had begun to grow dim so that he could not see, was lying down in his own place. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. 4 Then the LORD called Samuel, and he said, “Here I am!” 5 and ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” So he went and lay down. 6 And the LORD called again, “Samuel!” and Samuel arose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” 7 Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him. 8 And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” Then Eli perceived that the LORD was calling the boy. 9 Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down, and if he calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant hears.'” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. 10 And the LORD came and stood, calling as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant hears.” 11 Then the LORD said to Samuel, “Behold, I am about to do a thing in Israel at which the two ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. 12 On that day I will fulfill against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. 13 And I declare to him that I am about to punish his house forever, for the iniquity that he knew, because his sons were blaspheming God,1 and he did not restrain them. 14 Therefore I swear to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli's house shall not be atoned for by sacrifice or offering forever.” 15 Samuel lay until morning; then he opened the doors of the house of the LORD. And Samuel was afraid to tell the vision to Eli. 16 But Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son.” And he said, “Here I am.” 17 And Eli said, “What was it that he told you? Do not hide it from me. May God do so to you and more also if you hide anything from me of all that he told you.” 18 So Samuel told him everything and hid nothing from him. And he said, “It is the LORD. Let him do what seems good to him.” 19 And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground. 20 And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established as a prophet of the LORD. 21 And the LORD appeared again at Shiloh, for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel at Shiloh by the word of the LORD. Footnotes  3:13 Or blaspheming for themselves (ESV) Chronicles and Prophets: Jeremiah 48 Jeremiah 48 (Listen) Judgment on Moab 48 Concerning Moab. Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: “Woe to Nebo, for it is laid waste! Kiriathaim is put to shame, it is taken; the fortress is put to shame and broken down;2 the renown of Moab is no more. In Heshbon they planned disaster against her: ‘Come, let us cut her off from being a nation!' You also, O Madmen, shall be brought to silence; the sword shall pursue you. 3 “A voice! A cry from Horonaim, ‘Desolation and great destruction!'4 Moab is destroyed; her little ones have made a cry.5 For at the ascent of Luhith they go up weeping;1 for at the descent of Horonaim they have heard the distressed cry2 of destruction.6 Flee! Save yourselves! You will be like a juniper in the desert!7 For, because you trusted in your works and your treasures, you also shall be taken; and Chemosh shall go into exile with his priests and his officials.8 The destroyer shall come upon every city, and no city shall escape; the valley shall perish, and the plain shall be destroyed, as the LORD has spoken. 9 “Give wings to Moab, for she would fly away; her cities shall become a desolation, with no inhabitant in them. 10 “Cursed is he who does the work of the LORD with slackness, and cursed is he who keeps back his sword from bloodshed. 11 “Moab has been at ease from his youth and has settled on his dregs; he has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, nor has he gone into exile; so his taste remains in him, and his scent is not changed. 12 “Therefore, behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I shall send to him pourers who will pour him, and empty his vessels and break his3 jars in pieces. 13 Then Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel, their confidence. 14 “How do you say, ‘We are heroes and mighty men of war'?15 The destroyer of Moab and his cities has come up, and the choicest of his young men have gone down to slaughter, declares the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts.16 The calamity of Moab is near at hand, and his affliction hastens swiftly.17 Grieve for him, all you who are around him, and all who know his name; say, ‘How the mighty scepter is broken, the glorious staff.' 18 “Come down from your glory, and sit on the parched ground, O inhabitant of Dibon! For the destroyer of Moab has come up against you; he has destroyed your strongholds.19 Stand by the way and watch, O inhabitant of Aroer! Ask him who flees and her who escapes; say, ‘What has happened?'20 Moab is put to shame, for it is broken; wail and cry! Tell it beside the Arnon, that Moab is laid waste. 21 “Judgment has come upon the tableland, upon Holon, and Jahzah, and Mephaath, 22 and Dibon, and Nebo, and Beth-diblathaim, 23 and Kiriathaim, and Beth-gamul, and Beth-meon, 24 and Kerioth, and Bozrah, and all the cities of the land of Moab, far and near. 25 The horn of Moab is cut off, and his arm is broken, declares the LORD. 26 “Make him drunk, because he magnified himself against the LORD, so that Moab shall wallow in his vomit, and he too shall be held in derision. 27 Was not Israel a derision to you? Was he found among thieves, that whenever you spoke of him you wagged your head? 28 “Leave the cities, and dwell in the rock, O inhabitants of Moab! Be like the dove that nests in the sides of the mouth of a gorge.29 We have heard of the pride of Moab— he is very proud— of his loftiness, his pride, and his arrogance, and the haughtiness of his heart.30 I know his insolence, declares the LORD; his boasts are false, his deeds are false.31 Therefore I wail for Moab; I cry out for all Moab; for the men of Kir-hareseth I mourn.32 More than for Jazer I weep for you, O vine of Sibmah! Your branches passed over the sea, reached to the Sea of Jazer; on your summer fruits and your grapes the destroyer has fallen.33 Gladness and joy have been taken away from the fruitful land of Moab; I have made the wine cease from the winepresses; no one treads them with shouts of joy; the shouting is not the shout of joy. 34 “From the outcry at Heshbon even to Elealeh, as far as Jahaz they utter their voice, from Zoar to Horonaim and Eglath-shelishiyah. For the waters of Nimrim also have become desolate. 35 And I will bring to an end in Moab, declares the LORD, him who offers sacrifice in the high place and makes offerings to his god. 36 Therefore my heart moans for Moab like a flute, and my heart moans like a flute for the men of Kir-hareseth. Therefore the riches they gained have perished. 37 “For every head is shaved and every beard cut off. On all the hands are gashes, and around the waist is sackcloth. 38 On all the housetops of Moab and in the squares there is nothing but lamentation, for I have broken Moab like a vessel for which no one cares, declares the LORD. 39 How it is broken! How they wail! How Moab has turned his back in shame! So Moab has become a derision and a horror to all that are around him.” 40 For thus says the LORD: “Behold, one shall fly swiftly like an eagle and spread his wings against Moab;41 the cities shall be taken and the strongholds seized. The heart of the warriors of Moab shall be in that day like the heart of a woman in her birth pains;42 Moab shall be destroyed and be no longer a people, because he magnified himself against the LORD.43 Terror, pit, and snare are before you, O inhabitant of Moab! declares the LORD.44 He who flees from the terror shall fall into the pit, and he who climbs out of the pit shall be caught in the snare. For I will bring these things upon Moab, the year of their punishment, declares the LORD. 45 “In the shadow of Heshbon fugitives stop without strength, for fire came out from Heshbon, flame from the house of Sihon; it has destroyed the forehead of Moab, the crown of the sons of tumult.46 Woe to you, O Moab! The people of Chemosh are undone, for your sons have been taken captive, and your daughters into captivity.47 Yet I will restore the fortunes of Moab in the latter days, declares the LORD.” Thus far is the judgment on Moab. Footnotes  48:5 Hebrew weeping goes up with weeping  48:5 Septuagint (compare Isaiah 15:5) heard the cry  48:12 Septuagint, Aquila; Hebrew their (ESV) Gospels and Epistles: Mark 15 Mark 15 (Listen) Jesus Delivered to Pilate 15 And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate. 2 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 3 And the chief priests accused him of many things. 4 And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” 5 But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed. Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified 6 Now at the feast he used to release for them one prisoner for whom they asked. 7 And among the rebels in prison, who had committed murder in the insurrection, there was a man called Barabbas. 8 And the crowd came up and began to ask Pilate to do as he usually did for them. 9 And he answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?” 10 For he perceived that it was out of envy that the chief priests had delivered him up. 11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release for them Barabbas instead. 12 And Pilate again said to them, “Then what shall I do with the man you call the King of the Jews?” 13 And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” 14 And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” 15 So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas, and having scourged1 Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified. Jesus Is Mocked 16 And the soldiers led him away inside the palace (that is, the governor's headquarters),2 and they called together the whole battalion.3 17 And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on him. 18 And they began to salute him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 19 And they were striking his head with a reed and spitting on him and kneeling down in homage to him. 20 And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak and put his own clothes on him. And they led him out to crucify him. The Crucifixion 21 And they compelled a passerby, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross. 22 And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull). 23 And they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he did not take it. 24 And they crucified him and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take. 25 And it was the third hour4 when they crucified him. 26 And the inscription of the charge against him read, “The King of the Jews.” 27 And with him they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left.5 29 And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save yourself, and come down from the cross!” 31 So also the chief priests with the scribes mocked him to one another, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. 32 Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” Those who were crucified with him also reviled him. The Death of Jesus 33 And when the sixth hour6 had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.7 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 35 And some of the bystanders hearing it said, “Behold, he is calling Elijah.” 36 And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink, saying, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down.” 37 And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. 39 And when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he8 breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son9 of God!” 40
Old Testament: Nehemiah 7 Nehemiah 7 (Listen) 7 Now when the wall had been built and I had set up the doors, and the gatekeepers, the singers, and the Levites had been appointed, 2 I gave my brother Hanani and Hananiah the governor of the castle charge over Jerusalem, for he was a more faithful and God-fearing man than many. 3 And I said to them, “Let not the gates of Jerusalem be opened until the sun is hot. And while they are still standing guard, let them shut and bar the doors. Appoint guards from among the inhabitants of Jerusalem, some at their guard posts and some in front of their own homes.” 4 The city was wide and large, but the people within it were few, and no houses had been rebuilt. Lists of Returned Exiles 5 Then my God put it into my heart to assemble the nobles and the officials and the people to be enrolled by genealogy. And I found the book of the genealogy of those who came up at the first, and I found written in it: 6 These were the people of the province who came up out of the captivity of those exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried into exile. They returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his town. 7 They came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Azariah, Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispereth, Bigvai, Nehum, Baanah. The number of the men of the people of Israel: 8 the sons of Parosh, 2,172. 9 The sons of Shephatiah, 372. 10 The sons of Arah, 652. 11 The sons of Pahath-moab, namely the sons of Jeshua and Joab, 2,818. 12 The sons of Elam, 1,254. 13 The sons of Zattu, 845. 14 The sons of Zaccai, 760. 15 The sons of Binnui, 648. 16 The sons of Bebai, 628. 17 The sons of Azgad, 2,322. 18 The sons of Adonikam, 667. 19 The sons of Bigvai, 2,067. 20 The sons of Adin, 655. 21 The sons of Ater, namely of Hezekiah, 98. 22 The sons of Hashum, 328. 23 The sons of Bezai, 324. 24 The sons of Hariph, 112. 25 The sons of Gibeon, 95. 26 The men of Bethlehem and Netophah, 188. 27 The men of Anathoth, 128. 28 The men of Beth-azmaveth, 42. 29 The men of Kiriath-jearim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, 743. 30 The men of Ramah and Geba, 621. 31 The men of Michmas, 122. 32 The men of Bethel and Ai, 123. 33 The men of the other Nebo, 52. 34 The sons of the other Elam, 1,254. 35 The sons of Harim, 320. 36 The sons of Jericho, 345. 37 The sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 721. 38 The sons of Senaah, 3,930. 39 The priests: the sons of Jedaiah, namely the house of Jeshua, 973. 40 The sons of Immer, 1,052. 41 The sons of Pashhur, 1,247. 42 The sons of Harim, 1,017. 43 The Levites: the sons of Jeshua, namely of Kadmiel of the sons of Hodevah, 74. 44 The singers: the sons of Asaph, 148. 45 The gatekeepers: the sons of Shallum, the sons of Ater, the sons of Talmon, the sons of Akkub, the sons of Hatita, the sons of Shobai, 138. 46 The temple servants: the sons of Ziha, the sons of Hasupha, the sons of Tabbaoth, 47 the sons of Keros, the sons of Sia, the sons of Padon, 48 the sons of Lebana, the sons of Hagaba, the sons of Shalmai, 49 the sons of Hanan, the sons of Giddel, the sons of Gahar, 50 the sons of Reaiah, the sons of Rezin, the sons of Nekoda, 51 the sons of Gazzam, the sons of Uzza, the sons of Paseah, 52 the sons of Besai, the sons of Meunim, the sons of Nephushesim, 53 the sons of Bakbuk, the sons of Hakupha, the sons of Harhur, 54 the sons of Bazlith, the sons of Mehida, the sons of Harsha, 55 the sons of Barkos, the sons of Sisera, the sons of Temah, 56 the sons of Neziah, the sons of Hatipha. 57 The sons of Solomon's servants: the sons of Sotai, the sons of Sophereth, the sons of Perida, 58 the sons of Jaala, the sons of Darkon, the sons of Giddel, 59 the sons of Shephatiah, the sons of Hattil, the sons of Pochereth-hazzebaim, the sons of Amon. 60 All the temple servants and the sons of Solomon's servants were 392. 61 The following were those who came up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, Addon, and Immer, but they could not prove their fathers' houses nor their descent, whether they belonged to Israel: 62 the sons of Delaiah, the sons of Tobiah, the sons of Nekoda, 642. 63 Also, of the priests: the sons of Hobaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, the sons of Barzillai (who had taken a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite and was called by their name). 64 These sought their registration among those enrolled in the genealogies, but it was not found there, so they were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. 65 The governor told them that they were not to partake of the most holy food until a priest with Urim and Thummim should arise. Totals of People and Gifts 66 The whole assembly together was 42,360, 67 besides their male and female servants, of whom there were 7,337. And they had 245 singers, male and female. 68 Their horses were 736, their mules 245,1 69 their camels 435, and their donkeys 6,720. 70 Now some of the heads of fathers' houses gave to the work. The governor gave to the treasury 1,000 darics2 of gold, 50 basins, 30 priests' garments and 500 minas3 of silver.4 71 And some of the heads of fathers' houses gave into the treasury of the work 20,000 darics of gold and 2,200 minas of silver. 72 And what the rest of the people gave was 20,000 darics of gold, 2,000 minas of silver, and 67 priests' garments. 73 So the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, some of the people, the temple servants, and all Israel, lived in their towns. And when the seventh month had come, the people of Israel were in their towns. Footnotes  7:68 Compare Ezra 2:66 and the margins of some Hebrew manuscripts; Hebrew lacks Their horses . . . 245  7:70 A daric was a coin weighing about 1/4 ounce or 8.5 grams  7:70 A mina was about 1 1/4 pounds or 0.6 kilogram  7:70 Probable reading; Hebrew lacks minas of silver (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 36 Psalm 36 (Listen) How Precious Is Your Steadfast Love To the choirmaster. Of David, the servant of the LORD. 36 Transgression speaks to the wicked deep in his heart;1 there is no fear of God before his eyes.2 For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated.3 The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit; he has ceased to act wisely and do good.4 He plots trouble while on his bed; he sets himself in a way that is not good; he does not reject evil. 5 Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.6 Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; your judgments are like the great deep; man and beast you save, O LORD. 7 How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.8 They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights.9 For with you is the fountain of life; in your light do we see light. 10 Oh, continue your steadfast love to those who know you, and your righteousness to the upright of heart!11 Let not the foot of arrogance come upon me, nor the hand of the wicked drive me away.12 There the evildoers lie fallen; they are thrust down, unable to rise. Footnotes  36:1 Some Hebrew manuscripts, Syriac, Jerome (compare Septuagint); most Hebrew manuscripts in my heart (ESV) New Testament: Mark 15 Mark 15 (Listen) Jesus Delivered to Pilate 15 And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate. 2 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 3 And the chief priests accused him of many things. 4 And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” 5 But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed. Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified 6 Now at the feast he used to release for them one prisoner for whom they asked. 7 And among the rebels in prison, who had committed murder in the insurrection, there was a man called Barabbas. 8 And the crowd came up and began to ask Pilate to do as he usually did for them. 9 And he answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?” 10 For he perceived that it was out of envy that the chief priests had delivered him up. 11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release for them Barabbas instead. 12 And Pilate again said to them, “Then what shall I do with the man you call the King of the Jews?” 13 And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” 14 And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” 15 So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas, and having scourged1 Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified. Jesus Is Mocked 16 And the soldiers led him away inside the palace (that is, the governor's headquarters),2 and they called together the whole battalion.3 17 And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on him. 18 And they began to salute him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 19 And they were striking his head with a reed and spitting on him and kneeling down in homage to him. 20 And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak and put his own clothes on him. And they led him out to crucify him. The Crucifixion 21 And they compelled a passerby, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross. 22 And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull). 23 And they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he did not take it. 24 And they crucified him and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take. 25 And it was the third hour4 when they crucified him. 26 And the inscription of the charge against him read, “The King of the Jews.” 27 And with him they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left.5 29 And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save yourself, and come down from the cross!” 31 So also the chief priests with the scribes mocked him to one another, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. 32 Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” Those who were crucified with him also reviled him. The Death of Jesus 33 And when the sixth hour6 had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.7 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 35 And some of the bystanders hearing it said, “Behold, he is calling Elijah.” 36 And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink, saying, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down.” 37 And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. 39 And when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he8 breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son9 of God!” 40 There were also women looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome. 41 When he was in Galilee, they followed him and ministered to him, and there were also many other women who came up with him to Jerusalem. Jesus Is Buried 42 And when evening had come, since it was the day of Preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 44 Pilate was surprised to hear that he should have already died.10 And summoning the centurion, he asked him whether he was already dead. 45 And when he learned from the centurion that he was dead, he granted the corpse to Joseph. 46 And Joseph11 bought a linen shroud, and taking him down, wrapped him in the linen shroud and laid him in a tomb that had been cut out of the rock. And he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. 47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid. Footnotes  15:15 A Roman judicial penalty, consisting of a severe beating with a multi-lashed whip containing embedded pieces of bone and metal  15:16 Greek the praetorium  15:16 Greek cohort; a tenth of a Roman legion, usually about 600 men  15:25 That is, 9 a.m.  15:27 Some manuscripts insert verse 28: And the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “He was numbered with the transgressors”  15:33 That is, noon  15:33 That is, 3 p.m.  15:39 Some manuscripts insert cried out and  15:39 Or a son  15:44 Or Pilate wondered whether he had already died  15:46 Greek he (ESV)
Join me and Cyrene, one of our success coaches in Path to Freedom Coach Accelerator, as we chat all about being introverts and starting coaching businesses. Cyrene and I are BOTH introverts and in fact, probably 60-70% of our clients are too! In this interview we talk about how introverts are actually the best type of coaches, how we can relate to our introverted clients better, and how being an introvert is truly a strength when it comes to coaching. If you struggle talking to people, being shy, or wondering if you are cut out to run a coaching business as an introvert, then this chat is for you! If you want to learn more about working with us, check out the links below! 1) 4 Day Soul Aligned Biz Challenge punchdrunksoul.com/challenge 2) Path to Freedom Coach Accelerator program punchdrunksoul.com/pathtofreedom
This Sunday is our annual Water Day (formerly called The Great Big Water Balloon Fight of 2022) – so wear beachy kinds of clothing that you don't mind getting wet and a towel! We'll be serving hamburgers and hot-dogs (courtesy of Pineapple Willy's).The text we'll be studying together is Luke 23:26-31 as we continue our reading of Luke's Gospel. We're in the final stages of the narrative, and Jesus is now headed to the cross. As he is enroute to his place of execution, we are introduced to a new character who, again, isn't there to advance the story as much as give insight to its meaning.Simon of Cyrene (modern day Libya) appears in all three synoptic gospels who, like Barabbas, is named; so its intended that we pay attention to him. He is compelled by the Romans to carry Jesus' cross since Jesus isn't able to do so. So he takes Jesus' cross and follows behind him. What picture does that create for you? Who might he represent? Read Luke 9:23 – does it connect with this scene in your thinking?Jesus then stops to preach what is considered his final sermon to Israel when he speaks to the grief-stricken women on the road. Most scholars believe this is Jesus making a final forecast of the events that unfolded in 70 AD when Rome destroyed Jerusalem. We'll do our best to unpack that on Sunday.What stands out to me is that Jesus lets these women know they didn't need to weep for him. Considering he's been beaten and bloodied and on his way to be executed, how does that make sense? Why do you think it wasn't necessary to weep for Jesus? What sort of resolution is before him?Given Jesus' outcome – what might that tell us about following Jesus' way of the cross? How might it encourage us when His path becomes difficult to follow?I hope you can join us as we explore this text on Sunday! Click here for a pdf of the teaching slideshow.
With family: Judges 16; Acts 20 Judges 16 (Listen) Samson and Delilah 16 Samson went to Gaza, and there he saw a prostitute, and he went in to her. 2 The Gazites were told, “Samson has come here.” And they surrounded the place and set an ambush for him all night at the gate of the city. They kept quiet all night, saying, “Let us wait till the light of the morning; then we will kill him.” 3 But Samson lay till midnight, and at midnight he arose and took hold of the doors of the gate of the city and the two posts, and pulled them up, bar and all, and put them on his shoulders and carried them to the top of the hill that is in front of Hebron. 4 After this he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. 5 And the lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, “Seduce him, and see where his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to humble him. And we will each give you 1,100 pieces of silver.” 6 So Delilah said to Samson, “Please tell me where your great strength lies, and how you might be bound, that one could subdue you.” 7 Samson said to her, “If they bind me with seven fresh bowstrings that have not been dried, then I shall become weak and be like any other man.” 8 Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven fresh bowstrings that had not been dried, and she bound him with them. 9 Now she had men lying in ambush in an inner chamber. And she said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” But he snapped the bowstrings, as a thread of flax snaps when it touches the fire. So the secret of his strength was not known. 10 Then Delilah said to Samson, “Behold, you have mocked me and told me lies. Please tell me how you might be bound.” 11 And he said to her, “If they bind me with new ropes that have not been used, then I shall become weak and be like any other man.” 12 So Delilah took new ropes and bound him with them and said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” And the men lying in ambush were in an inner chamber. But he snapped the ropes off his arms like a thread. 13 Then Delilah said to Samson, “Until now you have mocked me and told me lies. Tell me how you might be bound.” And he said to her, “If you weave the seven locks of my head with the web and fasten it tight with the pin, then I shall become weak and be like any other man.” 14 So while he slept, Delilah took the seven locks of his head and wove them into the web.1 And she made them tight with the pin and said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” But he awoke from his sleep and pulled away the pin, the loom, and the web. 15 And she said to him, “How can you say, ‘I love you,' when your heart is not with me? You have mocked me these three times, and you have not told me where your great strength lies.” 16 And when she pressed him hard with her words day after day, and urged him, his soul was vexed to death. 17 And he told her all his heart, and said to her, “A razor has never come upon my head, for I have been a Nazirite to God from my mother's womb. If my head is shaved, then my strength will leave me, and I shall become weak and be like any other man.” 18 When Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called the lords of the Philistines, saying, “Come up again, for he has told me all his heart.” Then the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands. 19 She made him sleep on her knees. And she called a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. 20 And she said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” And he awoke from his sleep and said, “I will go out as at other times and shake myself free.” But he did not know that the LORD had left him. 21 And the Philistines seized him and gouged out his eyes and brought him down to Gaza and bound him with bronze shackles. And he ground at the mill in the prison. 22 But the hair of his head began to grow again after it had been shaved. The Death of Samson 23 Now the lords of the Philistines gathered to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god and to rejoice, and they said, “Our god has given Samson our enemy into our hand.” 24 And when the people saw him, they praised their god. For they said, “Our god has given our enemy into our hand, the ravager of our country, who has killed many of us.”2 25 And when their hearts were merry, they said, “Call Samson, that he may entertain us.” So they called Samson out of the prison, and he entertained them. They made him stand between the pillars. 26 And Samson said to the young man who held him by the hand, “Let me feel the pillars on which the house rests, that I may lean against them.” 27 Now the house was full of men and women. All the lords of the Philistines were there, and on the roof there were about 3,000 men and women, who looked on while Samson entertained. 28 Then Samson called to the LORD and said, “O Lord GOD, please remember me and please strengthen me only this once, O God, that I may be avenged on the Philistines for my two eyes.” 29 And Samson grasped the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and he leaned his weight against them, his right hand on the one and his left hand on the other. 30 And Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines.” Then he bowed with all his strength, and the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he had killed during his life. 31 Then his brothers and all his family came down and took him and brought him up and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the tomb of Manoah his father. He had judged Israel twenty years. Footnotes  16:14 Compare Septuagint; Hebrew lacks and fasten it tight . . . into the web  16:24 Or who has multiplied our slain (ESV) Acts 20 (Listen) Paul in Macedonia and Greece 20 After the uproar ceased, Paul sent for the disciples, and after encouraging them, he said farewell and departed for Macedonia. 2 When he had gone through those regions and had given them much encouragement, he came to Greece. 3 There he spent three months, and when a plot was made against him by the Jews1 as he was about to set sail for Syria, he decided to return through Macedonia. 4 Sopater the Berean, son of Pyrrhus, accompanied him; and of the Thessalonians, Aristarchus and Secundus; and Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy; and the Asians, Tychicus and Trophimus. 5 These went on ahead and were waiting for us at Troas, 6 but we sailed away from Philippi after the days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days we came to them at Troas, where we stayed for seven days. Eutychus Raised from the Dead 7 On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the next day, and he prolonged his speech until midnight. 8 There were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered. 9 And a young man named Eutychus, sitting at the window, sank into a deep sleep as Paul talked still longer. And being overcome by sleep, he fell down from the third story and was taken up dead. 10 But Paul went down and bent over him, and taking him in his arms, said, “Do not be alarmed, for his life is in him.” 11 And when Paul had gone up and had broken bread and eaten, he conversed with them a long while, until daybreak, and so departed. 12 And they took the youth away alive, and were not a little comforted. 13 But going ahead to the ship, we set sail for Assos, intending to take Paul aboard there, for so he had arranged, intending himself to go by land. 14 And when he met us at Assos, we took him on board and went to Mitylene. 15 And sailing from there we came the following day opposite Chios; the next day we touched at Samos; and2 the day after that we went to Miletus. 16 For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus, so that he might not have to spend time in Asia, for he was hastening to be at Jerusalem, if possible, on the day of Pentecost. Paul Speaks to the Ephesian Elders 17 Now from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called the elders of the church to come to him. 18 And when they came to him, he said to them: “You yourselves know how I lived among you the whole time from the first day that I set foot in Asia, 19 serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and with trials that happened to me through the plots of the Jews; 20 how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house, 21 testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.3 22 And now, behold, I am going to Jerusalem, constrained by4 the Spirit, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit testifies to me in every city that imprisonment and afflictions await me. 24 But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. 25 And now, behold, I know that none of you among whom I have gone about proclaiming the kingdom will see my face again. 26 Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all, 27 for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God. 28 Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God,5 which he obtained with his own blood.6 29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears. 32 And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified. 33 I coveted no one's silver or gold or apparel. 34 You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my necessities and to those who were with me. 35 In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'” 36 And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. 37 And there was much weeping on the part of all; they embraced Paul and kissed him, 38 being sorrowful most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship. Footnotes  20:3 Greek Ioudaioi probably refers here to Jewish religious leaders, and others under their influence, in that time; also verse 19  20:15 Some manuscripts add after remaining at Trogyllium  20:21 Some manuscripts omit Christ  20:22 Or bound in  20:28 Some manuscripts of the Lord  20:28 Or with the blood of his Own (ESV) In private: Jeremiah 29; Mark 15 Jeremiah 29 (Listen) Jeremiah's Letter to the Exiles 29 These are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem to the surviving elders of the exiles, and to the priests, the prophets, and all the people, whom Nebuchadnezzar had taken into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon. 2 This was after King Jeconiah and the queen mother, the eunuchs, the officials of Judah and Jerusalem, the craftsmen, and the metal workers had departed from Jerusalem. 3 The letter was sent by the hand of Elasah the son of Shaphan and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent to Babylon to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. It said: 4 “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: 5 Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce. 6 Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease. 7 But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare. 8 For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are among you deceive you, and do not listen to the dreams that they dream,1 9 for it is a lie that they are prophesying to you in my name; I did not send them, declares the LORD. 10 “For thus says the LORD: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare2 and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. 13 You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you, declares the LORD, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the LORD, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile. 15 “Because you have said, ‘The LORD has raised up prophets for us in Babylon,' 16 thus says the LORD concerning the king who sits on the throne of David, and concerning all the people who dwell in this city, your kinsmen who did not go out with you into exile: 17 ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, behold, I am sending on them sword, famine, and pestilence, and I will make them like vile figs that are so rotten they cannot be eaten. 18 I will pursue them with sword, famine, and pestilence, and will make them a horror to all the kingdoms of the earth, to be a curse, a terror, a hissing, and a reproach among all the nations where I have driven them, 19 because they did not pay attention to my words, declares the LORD, that I persistently sent to you by my servants the prophets, but you would not listen, declares the LORD.' 20 Hear the word of the LORD, all you exiles whom I sent away from Jerusalem to Babylon: 21 ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning Ahab the son of Kolaiah and Zedekiah the son of Maaseiah, who are prophesying a lie to you in my name: Behold, I will deliver them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and he shall strike them down before your eyes. 22 Because of them this curse shall be used by all the exiles from Judah in Babylon: “The LORD make you like Zedekiah and Ahab, whom the king of Babylon roasted in the fire,” 23 because they have done an outrageous thing in Israel, they have committed adultery with their neighbors' wives, and they have spoken in my name lying words that I did not command them. I am the one who knows, and I am witness, declares the LORD.'” Shemaiah's False Prophecy 24 To Shemaiah of Nehelam you shall say: 25 “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: You have sent letters in your name to all the people who are in Jerusalem, and to Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest, and to all the priests, saying, 26 ‘The LORD has made you priest instead of Jehoiada the priest, to have charge in the house of the LORD over every madman who prophesies, to put him in the stocks and neck irons. 27 Now why have you not rebuked Jeremiah of Anathoth who is prophesying to you? 28 For he has sent to us in Babylon, saying, “Your exile will be long; build houses and live in them, and plant gardens and eat their produce.”'” 29 Zephaniah the priest read this letter in the hearing of Jeremiah the prophet. 30 Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah: 31 “Send to all the exiles, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD concerning Shemaiah of Nehelam: Because Shemaiah had prophesied to you when I did not send him, and has made you trust in a lie, 32 therefore thus says the LORD: Behold, I will punish Shemaiah of Nehelam and his descendants. He shall not have anyone living among this people, and he shall not see the good that I will do to my people, declares the LORD, for he has spoken rebellion against the LORD.'” Footnotes  29:8 Hebrew your dreams, which you cause to dream  29:11 Or peace (ESV) Mark 15 (Listen) Jesus Delivered to Pilate 15 And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate. 2 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 3 And the chief priests accused him of many things. 4 And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” 5 But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed. Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified 6 Now at the feast he used to release for them one prisoner for whom they asked. 7 And among the rebels in prison, who had committed murder in the insurrection, there was a man called Barabbas. 8 And the crowd came up and began to ask Pilate to do as he usually did for them. 9 And he answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?” 10 For he perceived that it was out of envy that the chief priests had delivered him up. 11 But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release for them Barabbas instead. 12 And Pilate again said to them, “Then what shall I do with the man you call the King of the Jews?” 13 And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” 14 And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” 15 So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas, and having scourged1 Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified. Jesus Is Mocked 16 And the soldiers led him away inside the palace (that is, the governor's headquarters),2 and they called together the whole battalion.3 17 And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on him. 18 And they began to salute him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 19 And they were striking his head with a reed and spitting on him and kneeling down in homage to him. 20 And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak and put his own clothes on him. And they led him out to crucify him. The Crucifixion 21 And they compelled a passerby, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross. 22 And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull). 23 And they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he did not take it. 24 And they crucified him and divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take. 25 And it was the third hour4 when they crucified him. 26 And the inscription of the charge against him read, “The King of the Jews.” 27 And with him they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left.5 29 And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, 30 save yourself, and come down from the cross!” 31 So also the chief priests with the scribes mocked him to one another, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. 32 Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” Those who were crucified with him also reviled him. The Death of Jesus 33 And when the sixth hour6 had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.7 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 35 And some of the bystanders hearing it said, “Behold, he is calling Elijah.” 36 And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink, saying, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down.” 37 And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. 39 And when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he8 breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son9 of God!” 40 There were also women looking on from a distance, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome. 41 When he was in Galilee, they followed him and ministered to him, and there were also many other women who came up with him to Jerusalem. Jesus Is Buried 42 And when evening had come, since it was the day of Preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath, 43 Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 44 Pilate was surprised to hear that he should have already died.10 And summoning the centurion, he asked him whether he was already dead. 45 And when he learned from the centurion that he was dead, he granted the corpse to Joseph. 46 And Joseph11 bought a linen shroud, and taking him down, wrapped him in the linen shroud and laid him in a tomb that had been cut out of the rock. And he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. 47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid. Footnotes  15:15 A Roman judicial penalty, consisting of a severe beating with a multi-lashed whip containing embedded pieces of bone and metal  15:16 Greek the praetorium  15:16 Greek cohort; a tenth of a Roman legion, usually about 600 men  15:25 That is, 9 a.m.  15:27 Some manuscripts insert verse 28: And the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “He was numbered with the transgressors”  15:33 That is, noon  15:33 That is, 3 p.m.  15:39 Some manuscripts insert cried out and  15:39 Or a son  15:44 Or Pilate wondered whether he had already died  15:46 Greek he (ESV)
19Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews.20But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who on coming to Antioch spoke to the Hellenists[a]also,preaching the Lord Jesus.21Andthe hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number who believedturned to the Lord.22The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch.23When he came and sawthe grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lordwith steadfast purpose,24for he was a good man,full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many peoplewere added to the Lord.25So Barnabas went toTarsus to look for Saul,26and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first calledChristians.
Mark 15:16–20 | The Crucifixion from CrossPointe Coast on Vimeo. Preacher: Jeremiah Fyffe Scripture: Mark 15:16–32 THE SUFFERING OF CHRIST THE SOLDIERS MOCK THE ROAD TO THE CROSS THE CRUCIFIXION Acts 3:18 (ESV) But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. Isaiah 53:3 (ESV) He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Romans 16:13 (ESV) Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord; also his mother, who has been a mother to me as well. Acts 13:1 (ESV) Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. Proverbs 31:6 (ESV) Give strong drink to the one who is perishing, and wine to those in bitter distress R. Kent Hughes His pain was alleviated by nothing. If anything, it was heightened by his soul's health. Hebrews 7:25 (ESV) Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. Romans 8:1 (ESV) There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. My Jesus, I Love Thee I love thee because thou hast first loved me and purchased my pardon on Calvary's tree; I love thee for wearing the thorns on thy brow; if ever I loved thee, my Jesus, 'tis now. Psalm 22:18 (ESV) they divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots. Matthew 2:2 saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” Revelation 19:16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords. Psalm 22:1 (ESV) My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning? Psalm 22:7 (ESV) All who see me mock me; they make mouths at me; they wag their heads; Psalm 22:18 (ESV) they divide my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots. Lewis Bayly Soule: Lord, why, wouldest Thou be taken, when Thou mightest have escaped Thine enemies? Christ: That thy spiritual enemies should not take thee, and cast thee into the prison of utter darkness. 2 Timothy 1:8 (ESV) Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, 2 Timothy 3:12 (ESV) Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 1 Peter 4:12 (ESV) Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. Philippians 1:29 (ESV) For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, Romans 8:16–17 (ESV) The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. Hebrews 12:2 (ESV) looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 2:11 (ESV) For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one source. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers Hebrews 2:13 (ESV) “Behold, I and the children God has given me.” My Jesus, I Love Thee I love thee because thou hast first loved me and purchased my pardon on Calvary's tree; I love thee for wearing the thorns on thy brow; if ever I loved thee, my Jesus, 'tis now.
Proper 12 First Psalm: Psalm 69 Psalm 69 (Listen) Save Me, O God To the choirmaster: according to Lilies. Of David. 69 Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck.12 I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me.3 I am weary with my crying out; my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for my God. 4 More in number than the hairs of my head are those who hate me without cause; mighty are those who would destroy me, those who attack me with lies. What I did not steal must I now restore?5 O God, you know my folly; the wrongs I have done are not hidden from you. 6 Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel.7 For it is for your sake that I have borne reproach, that dishonor has covered my face.8 I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother's sons. 9 For zeal for your house has consumed me, and the reproaches of those who reproach you have fallen on me.10 When I wept and humbled2 my soul with fasting, it became my reproach.11 When I made sackcloth my clothing, I became a byword to them.12 I am the talk of those who sit in the gate, and the drunkards make songs about me. 13 But as for me, my prayer is to you, O LORD. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness.14 Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters.15 Let not the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up, or the pit close its mouth over me. 16 Answer me, O LORD, for your steadfast love is good; according to your abundant mercy, turn to me.17 Hide not your face from your servant, for I am in distress; make haste to answer me.18 Draw near to my soul, redeem me; ransom me because of my enemies! 19 You know my reproach, and my shame and my dishonor; my foes are all known to you.20 Reproaches have broken my heart, so that I am in despair. I looked for pity, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none.21 They gave me poison for food, and for my thirst they gave me sour wine to drink. 22 Let their own table before them become a snare; and when they are at peace, let it become a trap.323 Let their eyes be darkened, so that they cannot see, and make their loins tremble continually.24 Pour out your indignation upon them, and let your burning anger overtake them.25 May their camp be a desolation; let no one dwell in their tents.26 For they persecute him whom you have struck down, and they recount the pain of those you have wounded.27 Add to them punishment upon punishment; may they have no acquittal from you.428 Let them be blotted out of the book of the living; let them not be enrolled among the righteous. 29 But I am afflicted and in pain; let your salvation, O God, set me on high! 30 I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.31 This will please the LORD more than an ox or a bull with horns and hoofs.32 When the humble see it they will be glad; you who seek God, let your hearts revive.33 For the LORD hears the needy and does not despise his own people who are prisoners. 34 Let heaven and earth praise him, the seas and everything that moves in them.35 For God will save Zion and build up the cities of Judah, and people shall dwell there and possess it;36 the offspring of his servants shall inherit it, and those who love his name shall dwell in it. Footnotes  69:1 Or waters threaten my life  69:10 Hebrew lacks and humbled  69:22 Hebrew; a slight revocalization yields (compare Septuagint, Syriac, Jerome) a snare, and retribution and a trap  69:27 Hebrew may they not come into your righteousness (ESV) Second Psalm: Psalm 73 Psalm 73 (Listen) Book Three God Is My Strength and Portion Forever A Psalm of Asaph. 73 Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped.3 For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. 4 For they have no pangs until death; their bodies are fat and sleek.5 They are not in trouble as others are; they are not stricken like the rest of mankind.6 Therefore pride is their necklace; violence covers them as a garment.7 Their eyes swell out through fatness; their hearts overflow with follies.8 They scoff and speak with malice; loftily they threaten oppression.9 They set their mouths against the heavens, and their tongue struts through the earth.10 Therefore his people turn back to them, and find no fault in them.111 And they say, “How can God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?”12 Behold, these are the wicked; always at ease, they increase in riches.13 All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence.14 For all the day long I have been stricken and rebuked every morning.15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,” I would have betrayed the generation of your children. 16 But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed to me a wearisome task,17 until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end. 18 Truly you set them in slippery places; you make them fall to ruin.19 How they are destroyed in a moment, swept away utterly by terrors!20 Like a dream when one awakes, O Lord, when you rouse yourself, you despise them as phantoms.21 When my soul was embittered, when I was pricked in heart,22 I was brutish and ignorant; I was like a beast toward you. 23 Nevertheless, I am continually with you; you hold my right hand.24 You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory.25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength2 of my heart and my portion forever. 27 For behold, those who are far from you shall perish; you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you.28 But for me it is good to be near God; I have made the Lord GOD my refuge, that I may tell of all your works. Footnotes  73:10 Probable reading; Hebrew the waters of a full cup are drained by them  73:26 Hebrew rock (ESV) Old Testament: Judges 5:1–18 Judges 5:1–18 (Listen) The Song of Deborah and Barak 5 Then sang Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam on that day: 2 “That the leaders took the lead in Israel, that the people offered themselves willingly, bless the LORD! 3 “Hear, O kings; give ear, O princes; to the LORD I will sing; I will make melody to the LORD, the God of Israel. 4 “LORD, when you went out from Seir, when you marched from the region of Edom, the earth trembled and the heavens dropped, yes, the clouds dropped water.5 The mountains quaked before the LORD, even Sinai before the LORD,1 the God of Israel. 6 “In the days of Shamgar, son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were abandoned, and travelers kept to the byways.7 The villagers ceased in Israel; they ceased to be until I arose; I, Deborah, arose as a mother in Israel.8 When new gods were chosen, then war was in the gates. Was shield or spear to be seen among forty thousand in Israel?9 My heart goes out to the commanders of Israel who offered themselves willingly among the people. Bless the LORD. 10 “Tell of it, you who ride on white donkeys, you who sit on rich carpets2 and you who walk by the way.11 To the sound of musicians3 at the watering places, there they repeat the righteous triumphs of the LORD, the righteous triumphs of his villagers in Israel. “Then down to the gates marched the people of the LORD. 12 “Awake, awake, Deborah! Awake, awake, break out in a song! Arise, Barak, lead away your captives, O son of Abinoam.13 Then down marched the remnant of the noble; the people of the LORD marched down for me against the mighty.14 From Ephraim their root they marched down into the valley,4 following you, Benjamin, with your kinsmen; from Machir marched down the commanders, and from Zebulun those who bear the lieutenant's5 staff;15 the princes of Issachar came with Deborah, and Issachar faithful to Barak; into the valley they rushed at his heels. Among the clans of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.16 Why did you sit still among the sheepfolds, to hear the whistling for the flocks? Among the clans of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.17 Gilead stayed beyond the Jordan; and Dan, why did he stay with the ships? Asher sat still at the coast of the sea, staying by his landings.18 Zebulun is a people who risked their lives to the death; Naphtali, too, on the heights of the field. Footnotes  5:5 Or before the Lord, the One of Sinai, before the Lord  5:10 The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain; it may connote saddle blankets  5:11 Or archers; the meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain  5:14 Septuagint; Hebrew in Amalek  5:14 Hebrew commander's (ESV) New Testament: Acts 2:1–21 Acts 2:1–21 (Listen) The Coming of the Holy Spirit 2 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested1 on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. 5 Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. 6 And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language. 7 And they were amazed and astonished, saying, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? 9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, 11 both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” 12 And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.” Peter's Sermon at Pentecost 14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. 15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.2 16 But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel: 17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and
With family: Judges 9; Acts 13 Judges 9 (Listen) Abimelech's Conspiracy 9 Now Abimelech the son of Jerubbaal went to Shechem to his mother's relatives and said to them and to the whole clan of his mother's family, 2 “Say in the ears of all the leaders of Shechem, ‘Which is better for you, that all seventy of the sons of Jerubbaal rule over you, or that one rule over you?' Remember also that I am your bone and your flesh.” 3 And his mother's relatives spoke all these words on his behalf in the ears of all the leaders of Shechem, and their hearts inclined to follow Abimelech, for they said, “He is our brother.” 4 And they gave him seventy pieces of silver out of the house of Baal-berith with which Abimelech hired worthless and reckless fellows, who followed him. 5 And he went to his father's house at Ophrah and killed his brothers the sons of Jerubbaal, seventy men, on one stone. But Jotham the youngest son of Jerubbaal was left, for he hid himself. 6 And all the leaders of Shechem came together, and all Beth-millo, and they went and made Abimelech king, by the oak of the pillar at Shechem. 7 When it was told to Jotham, he went and stood on top of Mount Gerizim and cried aloud and said to them, “Listen to me, you leaders of Shechem, that God may listen to you. 8 The trees once went out to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us.' 9 But the olive tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my abundance, by which gods and men are honored, and go hold sway over the trees?' 10 And the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come and reign over us.' 11 But the fig tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my sweetness and my good fruit and go hold sway over the trees?' 12 And the trees said to the vine, ‘You come and reign over us.' 13 But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my wine that cheers God and men and go hold sway over the trees?' 14 Then all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come and reign over us.' 15 And the bramble said to the trees, ‘If in good faith you are anointing me king over you, then come and take refuge in my shade, but if not, let fire come out of the bramble and devour the cedars of Lebanon.' 16 “Now therefore, if you acted in good faith and integrity when you made Abimelech king, and if you have dealt well with Jerubbaal and his house and have done to him as his deeds deserved—17 for my father fought for you and risked his life and delivered you from the hand of Midian, 18 and you have risen up against my father's house this day and have killed his sons, seventy men on one stone, and have made Abimelech, the son of his female servant, king over the leaders of Shechem, because he is your relative—19 if you then have acted in good faith and integrity with Jerubbaal and with his house this day, then rejoice in Abimelech, and let him also rejoice in you. 20 But if not, let fire come out from Abimelech and devour the leaders of Shechem and Beth-millo; and let fire come out from the leaders of Shechem and from Beth-millo and devour Abimelech.” 21 And Jotham ran away and fled and went to Beer and lived there, because of Abimelech his brother. The Downfall of Abimelech 22 Abimelech ruled over Israel three years. 23 And God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the leaders of Shechem, and the leaders of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech, 24 that the violence done to the seventy sons of Jerubbaal might come, and their blood be laid on Abimelech their brother, who killed them, and on the men of Shechem, who strengthened his hands to kill his brothers. 25 And the leaders of Shechem put men in ambush against him on the mountaintops, and they robbed all who passed by them along that way. And it was told to Abimelech. 26 And Gaal the son of Ebed moved into Shechem with his relatives, and the leaders of Shechem put confidence in him. 27 And they went out into the field and gathered the grapes from their vineyards and trod them and held a festival; and they went into the house of their god and ate and drank and reviled Abimelech. 28 And Gaal the son of Ebed said, “Who is Abimelech, and who are we of Shechem, that we should serve him? Is he not the son of Jerubbaal, and is not Zebul his officer? Serve the men of Hamor the father of Shechem; but why should we serve him? 29 Would that this people were under my hand! Then I would remove Abimelech. I would say1 to Abimelech, ‘Increase your army, and come out.'” 30 When Zebul the ruler of the city heard the words of Gaal the son of Ebed, his anger was kindled. 31 And he sent messengers to Abimelech secretly,2 saying, “Behold, Gaal the son of Ebed and his relatives have come to Shechem, and they are stirring up3 the city against you. 32 Now therefore, go by night, you and the people who are with you, and set an ambush in the field. 33 Then in the morning, as soon as the sun is up, rise early and rush upon the city. And when he and the people who are with him come out against you, you may do to them as your hand finds to do.” 34 So Abimelech and all the men who were with him rose up by night and set an ambush against Shechem in four companies. 35 And Gaal the son of Ebed went out and stood in the entrance of the gate of the city, and Abimelech and the people who were with him rose from the ambush. 36 And when Gaal saw the people, he said to Zebul, “Look, people are coming down from the mountaintops!” And Zebul said to him, “You mistake4 the shadow of the mountains for men.” 37 Gaal spoke again and said, “Look, people are coming down from the center of the land, and one company is coming from the direction of the Diviners' Oak.” 38 Then Zebul said to him, “Where is your mouth now, you who said, ‘Who is Abimelech, that we should serve him?' Are not these the people whom you despised? Go out now and fight with them.” 39 And Gaal went out at the head of the leaders of Shechem and fought with Abimelech. 40 And Abimelech chased him, and he fled before him. And many fell wounded, up to the entrance of the gate. 41 And Abimelech lived at Arumah, and Zebul drove out Gaal and his relatives, so that they could not dwell at Shechem. 42 On the following day, the people went out into the field, and Abimelech was told. 43 He took his people and divided them into three companies and set an ambush in the fields. And he looked and saw the people coming out of the city. So he rose against them and killed them. 44 Abimelech and the company that was with him rushed forward and stood at the entrance of the gate of the city, while the two companies rushed upon all who were in the field and killed them. 45 And Abimelech fought against the city all that day. He captured the city and killed the people who were in it, and he razed the city and sowed it with salt. 46 When all the leaders of the Tower of Shechem heard of it, they entered the stronghold of the house of El-berith. 47 Abimelech was told that all the leaders of the Tower of Shechem were gathered together. 48 And Abimelech went up to Mount Zalmon, he and all the people who were with him. And Abimelech took an axe in his hand and cut down a bundle of brushwood and took it up and laid it on his shoulder. And he said to the men who were with him, “What you have seen me do, hurry and do as I have done.” 49 So every one of the people cut down his bundle and following Abimelech put it against the stronghold, and they set the stronghold on fire over them, so that all the people of the Tower of Shechem also died, about 1,000 men and women. 50 Then Abimelech went to Thebez and encamped against Thebez and captured it. 51 But there was a strong tower within the city, and all the men and women and all the leaders of the city fled to it and shut themselves in, and they went up to the roof of the tower. 52 And Abimelech came to the tower and fought against it and drew near to the door of the tower to burn it with fire. 53 And a certain woman threw an upper millstone on Abimelech's head and crushed his skull. 54 Then he called quickly to the young man his armor-bearer and said to him, “Draw your sword and kill me, lest they say of me, ‘A woman killed him.'” And his young man thrust him through, and he died. 55 And when the men of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, everyone departed to his home. 56 Thus God returned the evil of Abimelech, which he committed against his father in killing his seventy brothers. 57 And God also made all the evil of the men of Shechem return on their heads, and upon them came the curse of Jotham the son of Jerubbaal. Footnotes  9:29 Septuagint; Hebrew and he said  9:31 Or at Tormah  9:31 Hebrew besieging, or closing up  9:36 Hebrew You see (ESV) Acts 13 (Listen) Barnabas and Saul Sent Off 13 Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger,1 Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3 Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off. Barnabas and Saul on Cyprus 4 So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they went down to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus. 5 When they arrived at Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. And they had John to assist them. 6 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came upon a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet named Bar-Jesus. 7 He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a man of intelligence, who summoned Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God. 8 But Elymas the magician (for that is the meaning of his name) opposed them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith. 9 But Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him 10 and said, “You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord? 11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon you, and you will be blind and unable to see the sun for a time.” Immediately mist and darkness fell upon him, and he went about seeking people to lead him by the hand. 12 Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had occurred, for he was astonished at the teaching of the Lord. Paul and Barnabas at Antioch in Pisidia 13 Now Paul and his companions set sail from Paphos and came to Perga in Pamphylia. And John left them and returned to Jerusalem, 14 but they went on from Perga and came to Antioch in Pisidia. And on the Sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down. 15 After the reading from the Law and the Prophets, the rulers of the synagogue sent a message to them, saying, “Brothers, if you have any word of encouragement for the people, say it.” 16 So Paul stood up, and motioning with his hand said: “Men of Israel and you who fear God, listen. 17 The God of this people Israel chose our fathers and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. 18 And for about forty years he put up with2 them in the wilderness. 19 And after destroying seven nations in the land of Canaan, he gave them their land as an inheritance. 20 All this took about 450 years. And after that he gave them judges until Samuel the prophet. 21 Then they asked for a king, and God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for forty years. 22 And when he had removed him, he raised up David to be their king, of whom he testified and said, ‘I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.' 23 Of this man's offspring God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus, as he promised. 24 Before his coming, John had proclaimed a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. 25 And as John was finishing his course, he said, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but behold, after me one is coming, the sandals of whose feet I am not worthy to untie.' 26 “Brothers, sons of the family of Abraham, and those among you who fear God, to us has been sent the message of this salvation. 27 For those who live in Jerusalem and their rulers, because they did not recognize him nor understand the utterances of the prophets, which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled them by condemning him. 28 And though they found in him no guilt worthy of death, they asked Pilate to have him executed. 29 And when they had carried out all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb. 30 But God raised him from the dead, 31 and for many days he appeared to those who had come up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are now his witnesses to the people. 32 And we bring you the good news that what God promised to the fathers, 33 this he has fulfilled to us their children by raising Jesus, as also it is written in the second Psalm, “‘You are my Son, today I have begotten you.' 34 And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way, “‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.' 35 Therefore he says also in another psalm, “‘You will not let your Holy One see corruption.' 36 For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep and was laid with his fathers and saw corruption, 37 but he whom God raised up did not see corruption. 38 Let it be known to you therefore, brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, 39 and by him everyone who believes is freed3 from everything from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. 40 Beware, therefore, lest what is said in the Prophets should come about: 41 “‘Look, you scoffers, be astounded and perish; for I am doing a work in your days, a work that you will not believe, even if one tells it to you.'” 42 As they went out, the people begged that these things might be told them the next Sabbath. 43 And after the meeting of the synagogue broke up, many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas, who, as they spoke with them, urged them to continue in the grace of God. 44 The next Sabbath almost the whole city gathered to hear the word of the Lord. 45 But when the Jews4 saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and began to contradict what was spoken by Paul, reviling him. 46 And Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, saying, “It was necessary that the word of God be spoken first to you. Since you thrust it aside and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we are turning to the Gentiles. 47 For so the Lord has commanded us, saying, “‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.'” 48 And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed. 49 And the word of the Lord was spreading throughout the whole region. 50 But the Jews incited the devout women of high standing and the leading men of the city, stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and drove them out of their district. 51 But they shook off the dust from their feet against them and went to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit. Footnotes  13:1 Niger is a Latin word meaning black, or dark  13:18 Some manuscripts he carried (compare Deuteronomy 1:31)  13:39 Greek justified; twice in this verse  13:45 Greek Ioudaioi probably refers here to Jewish religious leaders, and others under their influence, in that time; also verse 50 (ESV) In private: Jeremiah 22; Mark 8 Jeremiah 22 (Listen) 22 Thus says the LORD: “Go down to the house of the king of Judah and speak there this word, 2 and say, ‘Hear the word of the LORD, O king of Judah, who sits on the throne of David, you, and your servants, and your people who enter these gates. 3 Thus says the LORD: Do justice and righteousness, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed. And do no wrong or violence to the resident alien, the fatherless, and the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place. 4 For if you will indeed obey this word, then there shall enter the gates of this house kings who sit on the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their servants and their people. 5 But if you will not obey these words, I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that this house shall become a desolation. 6 For thus says the LORD concerning the house of the king of Judah: “‘You are like Gilead to me, like the summit of Lebanon, yet surely I will make you a desert, an uninhabited city.17 I will prepare destroyers against you, each with his weapons, and they shall cut down your choicest cedars and cast them into the fire. 8 “‘And many nations will pass by this city, and every man will say to his neighbor, “Why has the LORD dealt thus with this great city?” 9 And they will answer, “Because they have forsaken the covenant of the LORD their God and worshiped other gods and served them.”'” 10 Weep not for him who is dead, nor grieve for him, but weep bitterly for him who goes away, for he shall return no more to see his native land. Message to the Sons of Josiah 11 For thus says the LORD concerning Shallum the son of Josiah, king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, and who went away from this place: “He shall return here no more, 12 but in the place where they have carried him captive, there shall he die, and he shall never see this land again.” 13 “Woe to him who builds his house by unrighteousness, and his upper rooms by injustice, who makes his neighbor serve him for nothing and does not give him his wages,14 who says, ‘I will build myself a great house with spacious upper rooms,' who cuts out windows for it, paneling it with cedar and painting it with vermilion.15 Do you think you are a king because you compete in cedar? Did not your father eat and drink and do justice and righteousness? Then it was well with him.16 He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Is not this to know me? declares the LORD.17 But you have eyes and heart only for your dishonest gain, for shedding innocent blood, and for practicing oppression and violence.” 18 Therefore thus says the LORD concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: “They shall not lament for him, saying, ‘Ah, my brother!' or ‘Ah, sister!' They shall not lament for him, saying, ‘Ah, lord!' or ‘Ah, his majesty!'19 With the burial of a donkey he shall be buried, dragged and dumped beyond the gates of Jerusalem.” 20 “Go up to Lebanon, and cry out, and lift up your voice in Bashan; cry out from Abarim, for all your lovers are destroyed.21 I spoke to you in your prosperity, but you said, ‘I will not listen.' This has been your way from your youth, that you have not obeyed my voice.22 The wind shall shepherd all your shepherds, and your lovers shall go into captivity; then you will be ashamed and confounded because of all your evil.23 O inhabitant of Lebanon, nested among the cedars, how you will be pitied when pangs come upon you, pain as of a woman in labor!” 24 “As I live, declares the LORD, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, were the signet ring on my right hand, yet I would tear you off 25 and give you into the hand of those who seek your life, into the hand of those of whom you ar