1st-century Hebrew preacher and later Christian saint
Old Testament: Nehemiah 10 Nehemiah 10 (Listen) The People Who Sealed the Covenant 10 “On the seals are the names of1 Nehemiah the governor, the son of Hacaliah, Zedekiah, 2 Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah, 3 Pashhur, Amariah, Malchijah, 4 Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch, 5 Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah, 6 Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch, 7 Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin, 8 Maaziah, Bilgai, Shemaiah; these are the priests. 9 And the Levites: Jeshua the son of Azaniah, Binnui of the sons of Henadad, Kadmiel; 10 and their brothers, Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan, 11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah, 12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah, 13 Hodiah, Bani, Beninu. 14 The chiefs of the people: Parosh, Pahath-moab, Elam, Zattu, Bani, 15 Bunni, Azgad, Bebai, 16 Adonijah, Bigvai, Adin, 17 Ater, Hezekiah, Azzur, 18 Hodiah, Hashum, Bezai, 19 Hariph, Anathoth, Nebai, 20 Magpiash, Meshullam, Hezir, 21 Meshezabel, Zadok, Jaddua, 22 Pelatiah, Hanan, Anaiah, 23 Hoshea, Hananiah, Hasshub, 24 Hallohesh, Pilha, Shobek, 25 Rehum, Hashabnah, Maaseiah, 26 Ahiah, Hanan, Anan, 27 Malluch, Harim, Baanah. The Obligations of the Covenant 28 “The rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants, and all who have separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the Law of God, their wives, their sons, their daughters, all who have knowledge and understanding, 29 join with their brothers, their nobles, and enter into a curse and an oath to walk in God's Law that was given by Moses the servant of God, and to observe and do all the commandments of the LORD our Lord and his rules and his statutes. 30 We will not give our daughters to the peoples of the land or take their daughters for our sons. 31 And if the peoples of the land bring in goods or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not buy from them on the Sabbath or on a holy day. And we will forego the crops of the seventh year and the exaction of every debt. 32 “We also take on ourselves the obligation to give yearly a third part of a shekel2 for the service of the house of our God: 33 for the showbread, the regular grain offering, the regular burnt offering, the Sabbaths, the new moons, the appointed feasts, the holy things, and the sin offerings to make atonement for Israel, and for all the work of the house of our God. 34 We, the priests, the Levites, and the people, have likewise cast lots for the wood offering, to bring it into the house of our God, according to our fathers' houses, at times appointed, year by year, to burn on the altar of the LORD our God, as it is written in the Law. 35 We obligate ourselves to bring the firstfruits of our ground and the firstfruits of all fruit of every tree, year by year, to the house of the LORD; 36 also to bring to the house of our God, to the priests who minister in the house of our God, the firstborn of our sons and of our cattle, as it is written in the Law, and the firstborn of our herds and of our flocks; 37 and to bring the first of our dough, and our contributions, the fruit of every tree, the wine and the oil, to the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and to bring to the Levites the tithes from our ground, for it is the Levites who collect the tithes in all our towns where we labor. 38 And the priest, the son of Aaron, shall be with the Levites when the Levites receive the tithes. And the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes to the house of our God, to the chambers of the storehouse. 39 For the people of Israel and the sons of Levi shall bring the contribution of grain, wine, and oil to the chambers, where the vessels of the sanctuary are, as well as the priests who minister, and the gatekeepers and the singers. We will not neglect the house of our God.” Footnotes  10:1 Hebrew lacks the names of  10:32 A shekel was about 2/5 ounce or 11 grams (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 37:23–40 Psalm 37:23–40 (Listen) 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.136 But he passed away,2 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  37:35 The identity of this tree is uncertain  37:36 Or But one passed by (ESV) New Testament: Luke 1 Luke 1 (Listen) Dedication to Theophilus 1 Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, 2 just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, 3 it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught. Birth of John the Baptist Foretold 5 In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah,1 of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. 6 And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. 7 But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years. 8 Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, 9 according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.” 18 And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” 19 And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” 21 And the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they were wondering at his delay in the temple. 22 And when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple. And he kept making signs to them and remained mute. 23 And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home. 24 After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she kept herself hidden, saying, 25 “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.” Birth of Jesus Foretold 26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed2 to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!”3 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” 34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”4 35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born5 will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant6 of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. Mary Visits Elizabeth 39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, 40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be7 a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.” Mary's Song of Praise: The Magnificat 46 And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord,47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.50 And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.51 He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate;53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty.54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,55 as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.” 56 And Mary remained with her about three months and returned to her home. The Birth of John the Baptist 57 Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. 58 And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. 59 And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child. And they would have called him Zechariah after his father, 60 but his mother answered, “No; he shall be called John.” 61 And they said to her, “None of your relatives is called by this name.” 62 And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he wanted him to be called. 63 And he asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all wondered. 64 And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. 65 And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea, 66 and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, “What then will this child be?” For the hand of the Lord was with him. Zechariah's Prophecy 67 And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying, 68 “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people69 and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David,70 as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,71 that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us;72 to show the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant,73 the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us74 that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear,75 in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.76 And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,77 to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins,78 because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us8 from on high79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” 80 And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance to Israel. Footnotes  1:5 Greek Zacharias  1:27 That is, legally pledged to be married  1:28 Some manuscripts add Blessed are you among women!  1:34 Greek since I do not know a man  1:35 Some manuscripts add of you  1:38 Greek bondservant; also verse 48  1:45 Or believed, for there will be  1:78 Or when the sunrise shall dawn upon us; some manuscripts since the sunrise has visited us (ESV)
Psalms and Wisdom: Psalm 8 Psalm 8 (Listen) How Majestic Is Your Name To the choirmaster: according to The Gittith.1 A Psalm of David. 8 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens.2 Out of the mouth of babies and infants, you have established strength because of your foes, to still the enemy and the avenger. 3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,4 what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? 5 Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings2 and crowned him with glory and honor.6 You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet,7 all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field,8 the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! Footnotes  8:1 Probably a musical or liturgical term  8:5 Or than God; Septuagint than the angels (ESV) Pentateuch and History: Judges 20 Judges 20 (Listen) Israel's War with the Tribe of Benjamin 20 Then all the people of Israel came out, from Dan to Beersheba, including the land of Gilead, and the congregation assembled as one man to the LORD at Mizpah. 2 And the chiefs of all the people, of all the tribes of Israel, presented themselves in the assembly of the people of God, 400,000 men on foot that drew the sword. 3 (Now the people of Benjamin heard that the people of Israel had gone up to Mizpah.) And the people of Israel said, “Tell us, how did this evil happen?” 4 And the Levite, the husband of the woman who was murdered, answered and said, “I came to Gibeah that belongs to Benjamin, I and my concubine, to spend the night. 5 And the leaders of Gibeah rose against me and surrounded the house against me by night. They meant to kill me, and they violated my concubine, and she is dead. 6 So I took hold of my concubine and cut her in pieces and sent her throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel, for they have committed abomination and outrage in Israel. 7 Behold, you people of Israel, all of you, give your advice and counsel here.” 8 And all the people arose as one man, saying, “None of us will go to his tent, and none of us will return to his house. 9 But now this is what we will do to Gibeah: we will go up against it by lot, 10 and we will take ten men of a hundred throughout all the tribes of Israel, and a hundred of a thousand, and a thousand of ten thousand, to bring provisions for the people, that when they come they may repay Gibeah of Benjamin for all the outrage that they have committed in Israel.” 11 So all the men of Israel gathered against the city, united as one man. 12 And the tribes of Israel sent men through all the tribe of Benjamin, saying, “What evil is this that has taken place among you? 13 Now therefore give up the men, the worthless fellows in Gibeah, that we may put them to death and purge evil from Israel.” But the Benjaminites would not listen to the voice of their brothers, the people of Israel. 14 Then the people of Benjamin came together out of the cities to Gibeah to go out to battle against the people of Israel. 15 And the people of Benjamin mustered out of their cities on that day 26,000 men who drew the sword, besides the inhabitants of Gibeah, who mustered 700 chosen men. 16 Among all these were 700 chosen men who were left-handed; every one could sling a stone at a hair and not miss. 17 And the men of Israel, apart from Benjamin, mustered 400,000 men who drew the sword; all these were men of war. 18 The people of Israel arose and went up to Bethel and inquired of God, “Who shall go up first for us to fight against the people of Benjamin?” And the LORD said, “Judah shall go up first.” 19 Then the people of Israel rose in the morning and encamped against Gibeah. 20 And the men of Israel went out to fight against Benjamin, and the men of Israel drew up the battle line against them at Gibeah. 21 The people of Benjamin came out of Gibeah and destroyed on that day 22,000 men of the Israelites. 22 But the people, the men of Israel, took courage, and again formed the battle line in the same place where they had formed it on the first day. 23 And the people of Israel went up and wept before the LORD until the evening. And they inquired of the LORD, “Shall we again draw near to fight against our brothers, the people of Benjamin?” And the LORD said, “Go up against them.” 24 So the people of Israel came near against the people of Benjamin the second day. 25 And Benjamin went against them out of Gibeah the second day, and destroyed 18,000 men of the people of Israel. All these were men who drew the sword. 26 Then all the people of Israel, the whole army, went up and came to Bethel and wept. They sat there before the LORD and fasted that day until evening, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. 27 And the people of Israel inquired of the LORD (for the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days, 28 and Phinehas the son of Eleazar, son of Aaron, ministered before it in those days), saying, “Shall we go out once more to battle against our brothers, the people of Benjamin, or shall we cease?” And the LORD said, “Go up, for tomorrow I will give them into your hand.” 29 So Israel set men in ambush around Gibeah. 30 And the people of Israel went up against the people of Benjamin on the third day and set themselves in array against Gibeah, as at other times. 31 And the people of Benjamin went out against the people and were drawn away from the city. And as at other times they began to strike and kill some of the people in the highways, one of which goes up to Bethel and the other to Gibeah, and in the open country, about thirty men of Israel. 32 And the people of Benjamin said, “They are routed before us, as at the first.” But the people of Israel said, “Let us flee and draw them away from the city to the highways.” 33 And all the men of Israel rose up out of their place and set themselves in array at Baal-tamar, and the men of Israel who were in ambush rushed out of their place from Maareh-geba.1 34 And there came against Gibeah 10,000 chosen men out of all Israel, and the battle was hard, but the Benjaminites did not know that disaster was close upon them. 35 And the LORD defeated Benjamin before Israel, and the people of Israel destroyed 25,100 men of Benjamin that day. All these were men who drew the sword. 36 So the people of Benjamin saw that they were defeated. The men of Israel gave ground to Benjamin, because they trusted the men in ambush whom they had set against Gibeah. 37 Then the men in ambush hurried and rushed against Gibeah; the men in ambush moved out and struck all the city with the edge of the sword. 38 Now the appointed signal between the men of Israel and the men in the main ambush was that when they made a great cloud of smoke rise up out of the city 39 the men of Israel should turn in battle. Now Benjamin had begun to strike and kill about thirty men of Israel. They said, “Surely they are defeated before us, as in the first battle.” 40 But when the signal began to rise out of the city in a column of smoke, the Benjaminites looked behind them, and behold, the whole of the city went up in smoke to heaven. 41 Then the men of Israel turned, and the men of Benjamin were dismayed, for they saw that disaster was close upon them. 42 Therefore they turned their backs before the men of Israel in the direction of the wilderness, but the battle overtook them. And those who came out of the cities were destroying them in their midst. 43 Surrounding the Benjaminites, they pursued them and trod them down from Nohah2 as far as opposite Gibeah on the east. 44 Eighteen thousand men of Benjamin fell, all of them men of valor. 45 And they turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of Rimmon. Five thousand men of them were cut down in the highways. And they were pursued hard to Gidom, and 2,000 men of them were struck down. 46 So all who fell that day of Benjamin were 25,000 men who drew the sword, all of them men of valor. 47 But 600 men turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of Rimmon and remained at the rock of Rimmon four months. 48 And the men of Israel turned back against the people of Benjamin and struck them with the edge of the sword, the city, men and beasts and all that they found. And all the towns that they found they set on fire. Footnotes  20:33 Some Septuagint manuscripts place west of Geba  20:43 Septuagint; Hebrew [at their] resting place (ESV) Chronicles and Prophets: Jeremiah 36 Jeremiah 36 (Listen) Jehoiakim Burns Jeremiah's Scroll 36 In the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the LORD: 2 “Take a scroll and write on it all the words that I have spoken to you against Israel and Judah and all the nations, from the day I spoke to you, from the days of Josiah until today. 3 It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the disaster that I intend to do to them, so that every one may turn from his evil way, and that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.” 4 Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah, and Baruch wrote on a scroll at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD that he had spoken to him. 5 And Jeremiah ordered Baruch, saying, “I am banned from going to the house of the LORD, 6 so you are to go, and on a day of fasting in the hearing of all the people in the LORD's house you shall read the words of the LORD from the scroll that you have written at my dictation. You shall read them also in the hearing of all the men of Judah who come out of their cities. 7 It may be that their plea for mercy will come before the LORD, and that every one will turn from his evil way, for great is the anger and wrath that the LORD has pronounced against this people.” 8 And Baruch the son of Neriah did all that Jeremiah the prophet ordered him about reading from the scroll the words of the LORD in the LORD's house. 9 In the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem and all the people who came from the cities of Judah to Jerusalem proclaimed a fast before the LORD. 10 Then, in the hearing of all the people, Baruch read the words of Jeremiah from the scroll, in the house of the LORD, in the chamber of Gemariah the son of Shaphan the secretary, which was in the upper court, at the entry of the New Gate of the LORD's house. 11 When Micaiah the son of Gemariah, son of Shaphan, heard all the words of the LORD from the scroll, 12 he went down to the king's house, into the secretary's chamber, and all the officials were sitting there: Elishama the secretary, Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, Elnathan the son of Achbor, Gemariah the son of Shaphan, Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the officials. 13 And Micaiah told them all the words that he had heard, when Baruch read the scroll in the hearing of the people. 14 Then all the officials sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, son of Shelemiah, son of Cushi, to say to Baruch, “Take in your hand the scroll that you read in the hearing of the people, and come.” So Baruch the son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand and came to them. 15 And they said to him, “Sit down and read it.” So Baruch read it to them. 16 When they heard all the words, they turned one to another in fear. And they said to Baruch, “We must report all these words to the king.” 17 Then they asked Baruch, “Tell us, please, how did you write all these words? Was it at his dictation?” 18 Baruch answered them, “He dictated all these words to me, while I wrote them with ink on the scroll.” 19 Then the officials said to Baruch, “Go and hide, you and Jeremiah, and let no one know where you are.” 20 So they went into the court to the king, having put the scroll in the chamber of Elishama the secretary, and they reported all the words to the king. 21 Then the king sent Jehudi to get the scroll, and he took it from the chamber of Elishama the secretary. And Jehudi read it to the king and all the officials who stood beside the king. 22 It was the ninth month, and the king was sitting in the winter house, and there was a fire burning in the fire pot before him. 23 As Jehudi read three or four columns, the king would cut them off with a knife and throw them into the fire in the fire pot, until the entire scroll was consumed in the fire that was in the fire pot. 24 Yet neither the king nor any of his servants who heard all these words was afraid, nor did they tear their garments. 25 Even when Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah urged the king not to burn the scroll, he would not listen to them. 26 And the king commanded Jerahmeel the king's son and Seraiah the son of Azriel and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel to seize Baruch the secretary and Jeremiah the prophet, but the LORD hid them. 27 Now after the king had burned the scroll with the words that Baruch wrote at Jeremiah's dictation, the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah: 28 “Take another scroll and write on it all the former words that were in the first scroll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah has burned. 29 And concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah you shall say, ‘Thus says the LORD, You have burned this scroll, saying, “Why have you written in it that the king of Babylon will certainly come and destroy this land, and will cut off from it man and beast?” 30 Therefore thus says the LORD concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah: He shall have none to sit on the throne of David, and his dead body shall be cast out to the heat by day and the frost by night. 31 And I will punish him and his offspring and his servants for their iniquity. I will bring upon them and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem and upon the people of Judah all the disaster that I have pronounced against them, but they would not hear.'” 32 Then Jeremiah took another scroll and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah, who wrote on it at the dictation of Jeremiah all the words of the scroll that Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire. And many similar words were added to them. (ESV) Gospels and Epistles: Mark 6 Mark 6 (Listen) Jesus Rejected at Nazareth 6 He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. 4 And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” 5 And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And he marveled because of their unbelief. And he went about among the villages teaching. Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles 7 And he called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. 8 He charged them to take nothing for their journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in their belts—9 but to wear sandals and not put on two tunics.1 10 And he said to them, “Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you depart from there. 11 And if any place will not receive you and they will not listen to you, when you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.” 12 So they went out and proclaimed that people should repent. 13 And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them. The Death of John the Baptist 14 King Herod heard of it, for Jesus'2 name had become known. Some3 said, “John the Baptist4 has been raised from the dead. That is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.” 15 But others said, “He is Elijah.” And others said, “He is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” 16 But when Herod heard of it, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.” 17 For it was Herod who had sent and seized John and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip's wife, because he had married her. 18 For John had been saying to Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother's wife.” 19 And Herodias had a grudge against him and wanted to put him to death. But she could not, 20 for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he kept him safe. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed, and yet he heard him gladly. 21 But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his nobles and military commanders and the leading men of Galilee. 22 For when Herodias's daughter came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests. And the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it to you.” 23 And he vowed to her, “Whatever you ask me, I will give you, up to half of my kingdom.” 24 And she went out and said to her mother, “For what should I ask?” And she said, “The head of John the Baptist.” 25 And she came in immediately with haste to the king and asked, saying, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” 26 And the king was exceedingly sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he did not want to break his word to her. 27 And immediately the king sent an executioner with orders to bring John's5 head. He went and beheaded him in the prison 28 and brought his head on a platter and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When his disciples heard of it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb. Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand 30 The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught. 31 And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. 32 And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves. 33 Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they ran there on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things. 35 And when it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the hour is now late. 36 Send them away to go into the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii6 worth of bread and give it to them to eat?” 38 And he said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” 39 Then he commanded them all to sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in groups, by hundreds and by fifties. 41 And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing and broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the people. And he divided the two fish among them all. 42 And they all ate and were satisfied. 43 And they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. 44 And those who ate the loaves were five thousand men. Jesus Walks on the Water 45 Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. 46 And after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray. 47 And when evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and he was alone on the land. 48 And he saw that they were making headway painfully, for the wind was against them. And about the fourth watch of the night7 he came to them, walking on the sea. He meant to pass by them, 49 but when they saw him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost, and cried out, 50 for they all saw him and were terrified. But immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” 51 And he got into the boat with them, and the wind ceased. And they were utterly astounded, 52 for they did not understand about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened. Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret 53 When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and moored to the shore. 54 And when they got out of the boat, the people immediately recognized him 55 and ran about the whole region and began to bring the sick people on their beds to wherever they heard he was. 56 And wherever he came, in villages, cities, or countryside, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and implored him that they might touch even the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well. Footnotes  6:9 Greek chiton, a long garment worn under the cloak next to the skin  6:14 Greek his  6:14 Some manuscripts He  6:14 Greek baptizer; also verse 24  6:27 Greek his  6:37 A denarius was a day's wage for a laborer  6:48 That is, between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. (ESV)
In our flesh, our tendency is to be great in the eyes of people. But what a miss it would be to be great in the eyes of the world but not in the eyes of Jesus. In this message, we look at the life of John the Baptist to learn what true greatness looks like.
This fun conversation about people of the Bible can bring a greater understanding and relatability of Bible stories, God's truth for you, how God's story plays out in his children. Are there examples from people of the Bible that are your favorite? Who in the Bible would you invite to a dinner party? What questions would ask Esther, Paul, John the Baptist, Elijah, Ruth and more? Is your faith strengthened by their stories? For complete show notes, click HERE
In our flesh, our tendency is to be great in the eyes of people. But what a miss it would be to be great in the eyes of the world but not in the eyes of Jesus. In this message, we look at the life of John the Baptist to learn what true greatness looks like.
GOSPEL POWER l AUGUST 4, 2022 - Thursday of 18th Week in Ordinary Time Saint John Vianney, priest Gospel: Mt 16:13-23 13When Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, but others Elijah, and still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” 17And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. 18And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” 20Then he sternly ordered the disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah. 21From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 22And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you.” 23But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.” This Gospel passage has always been interpreted and preached about as the primacy of Peter, which is true; but it has a lot more to offer for our consideration. We see that in a single episode, Peter is both affirmed and scolded by Jesus. For though Peter is open to God's Spirit, at whose prompting he confesses and brings to light the Messianic identity of Jesus, he is, at the same time, open to the worldly spirit, which moves him to resist the Messiah's destiny to suffer and die. Thus, he unwittingly, plays the role of the tempter, trying to make Jesus trip and fall. We can resonate with Peter's experience of ambivalence, divided loyalty, and lack of discernment. These are the ever-present stumbling blocks in the journey of faith, and we can only avoid them by humbly relying on God's grace in all matters. Lord Jesus, keep us aware that the greater the responsibility entrusted to us, so also should be our reliance on your grace. Amen.
Derek begins this week's study on the teaching about baptisms highlighting that it this word is plural. Actually, there are three baptisms. The first is the baptism of John the Baptist, which Derek notes has three requirements, the first being repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
Tune in to hear guest preacher, Kerlin Calderon from Grace Tabernacle, speak on Matt 11:1-6. In this text, John the Baptist is going through a rough time in his life and is faced with the same questions that we all eventually wrestle with - Is Jesus the answer? Listen in to hear more.
On this podcast of Sonshine USA our Bible study teacher Warren Landis expounds from John 1:19-36. Here we read about the Confession of John The Baptist. Toward the end of today's podcast, Warren has and extended time of sharing prayer request and praying for your needs. To God be the GLORY! AMEN! --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/warren-landis4/support
Jesus called John the Baptist the “greatest man ever born.” Ever wonder why? Why would Jesus brag so much about his cousin John? Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that John preached about the need to repent of our sins, and Jesus died to forgive them. Their messages played off each other. We'll take a look at that in this message.
Luke 9:18-27 (ESV) 18 Now it happened that as he was praying alone, the disciples were with him. And he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” 19 And they answered, “John the Baptist. But others say, Elijah, and others, that one of the prophets of old has risen.” 20 Then he said to them, […] The post Who Do You Say That I Am? (Luke 9:18-27) first appeared on Hope of Christ Church.
A very good morning to you - I greet you in Jesus' precious name. It is Saturday morning, the 6th of August 2022, and this is your friend, Angus Buchan, with a thought for today.“And the people kept shouting, “The voice of a god and not of a man!” Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God.” Acts 12:22Don't ever touch God's glory. King Herod was delivering a speech. The people were shouting and saying he was speaking like a god and straight away the Lord struck him and he died. Never ever touch God's glory. God will not tolerate that from anybody. “God resists the proud,But gives grace to the humble.”1 Peter 5:5Robert Murray McShane was a young Scottish evangelist that lived in Dundee, Scotland. He died before he reached the age of thirty. He was an incredible man of God. He started a revival that swept all over the area in Dundee and when people tried to praise him, he would say, “Rather than having been an instrument of the Lord, all I was, was an adoring spectator.” That is humility.Francis of Assisi was called to pray for a child who was deformed. He said he would not pray for that child. They wanted to know why. He said, “If I pray for that child, God is going to heal that child and then you are going to think it was me.” They promised him that they would not do that. Eventually, reluctantly, he went and laid his hands on that child and the child was completely restored to health. The people were ecstatic. They were taken up by the power of God. After a few minutes they looked around to see this man so that they could properly worship him, and he was nowhere to be seen. He had fled for his life. Don't touch God's glory.William Duma, the Zulu preacher from the hills of Zululand, was called to preach in a big church. It was 9 o'clock and he had not arrived. The pastor was looking at a sermon he might have to preach because the man of God had not arrived and the church was packed with people. Eventually, there was a little knock on the back door where the cleaning lady came in. The pastor went through the curtains at the back and there was the servant of God, ready to preach. Folks, God uses men and women who are humble. The Lord said of John the Baptist, “There has never been a man born of a woman who is greater than John the Baptist.” If we look at John 3:30, John the Baptist said:“He must increase, but I must decrease.” Don't touch God's glory.Have a wonderful day.Jesus bless you and goodbye.
July 31, 2022 AM, Matthew 21:33-46 // Mark 12:1-12 // Luke 20:9-19.The earlier parable of the two sons ended with Jesus stating that common sinners would enter the kingdom of God while the Pharisees would not. Obviously, this refers to sinners who had repented when told they needed to do so by John the Baptist or by Jesus and His disciples. But repentance was something that the chief priests and elders were totally unwilling to do. The parable of the vinedressers also ends with a mention of the kingdom of God— with Jesus saying that it will be taken from the present leadership of Israel and turned over to a nation which bears its fruit. Such a nation would show forth the fruits of repentance (as John the Baptist called for) and it would render to its owner what is due Him—honor, worship, and service—like the vinedressers should have done to the landowner. What fruits are you bringing to the divine owner of the universe? Our Scripture reading was found in Ezekiel 45.
Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi and he asked his disciples, "Who do people say that the Son of Man is?" They replied, "Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter said in reply, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus said to him in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." Then he strictly ordered his disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ. From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer greatly from the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised. Then Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him, "God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you." He turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do."
The contrasts between two humans could not have been greater than that between John the Baptist and King Herod. John was righteous, bold, disciplined, and unafraid to confront sin. Herod was evil, ruled by his lusts and pride, undisciplined, and foolish. John was faithful unto death - persecuted for righteousness' sake. Herod was the propagator of evil. John is a model for us- Herod a pitiful case not to be imitated. Our supreme goal in life, like John, must be to bring glory to Christ Jesus, the Son of God.
Homily for Mt 14:1-12 Herod the tetrarch heard of the reputation of Jesus and said to his servants, “This man is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why mighty powers are at work in him.” Now Herod had arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, for John had said to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.” Although he wanted to kill him, he feared the people, for they regarded him as a prophet. But at a birthday celebration for Herod, the daughter of Herodias performed a dance before the guests and delighted Herod so much that he swore to give her whatever she might ask for. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests who were present, he ordered that it be given, and he had John beheaded in the prison. His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. His disciples came and took away the corpse and buried him; and they went and told Jesus.
Proper 13 First Psalm: Psalm 78:1–39 Psalm 78:1–39 (Listen) Tell the Coming Generation A Maskil1 of Asaph. 78 Give ear, O my people, to my teaching; incline your ears to the words of my mouth!2 I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings from of old,3 things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us.4 We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the LORD, and his might, and the wonders that he has done. 5 He established a testimony in Jacob and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers to teach to their children,6 that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and arise and tell them to their children,7 so that they should set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments;8 and that they should not be like their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not steadfast, whose spirit was not faithful to God. 9 The Ephraimites, armed with2 the bow, turned back on the day of battle.10 They did not keep God's covenant, but refused to walk according to his law.11 They forgot his works and the wonders that he had shown them.12 In the sight of their fathers he performed wonders in the land of Egypt, in the fields of Zoan.13 He divided the sea and let them pass through it, and made the waters stand like a heap.14 In the daytime he led them with a cloud, and all the night with a fiery light.15 He split rocks in the wilderness and gave them drink abundantly as from the deep.16 He made streams come out of the rock and caused waters to flow down like rivers. 17 Yet they sinned still more against him, rebelling against the Most High in the desert.18 They tested God in their heart by demanding the food they craved.19 They spoke against God, saying, “Can God spread a table in the wilderness?20 He struck the rock so that water gushed out and streams overflowed. Can he also give bread or provide meat for his people?” 21 Therefore, when the LORD heard, he was full of wrath; a fire was kindled against Jacob; his anger rose against Israel,22 because they did not believe in God and did not trust his saving power.23 Yet he commanded the skies above and opened the doors of heaven,24 and he rained down on them manna to eat and gave them the grain of heaven.25 Man ate of the bread of the angels; he sent them food in abundance.26 He caused the east wind to blow in the heavens, and by his power he led out the south wind;27 he rained meat on them like dust, winged birds like the sand of the seas;28 he let them fall in the midst of their camp, all around their dwellings.29 And they ate and were well filled, for he gave them what they craved.30 But before they had satisfied their craving, while the food was still in their mouths,31 the anger of God rose against them, and he killed the strongest of them and laid low the young men of Israel. 32 In spite of all this, they still sinned; despite his wonders, they did not believe.33 So he made their days vanish like3 a breath,4 and their years in terror.34 When he killed them, they sought him; they repented and sought God earnestly.35 They remembered that God was their rock, the Most High God their redeemer.36 But they flattered him with their mouths; they lied to him with their tongues.37 Their heart was not steadfast toward him; they were not faithful to his covenant.38 Yet he, being compassionate, atoned for their iniquity and did not destroy them; he restrained his anger often and did not stir up all his wrath.39 He remembered that they were but flesh, a wind that passes and comes not again. Footnotes  78:1 Probably a musical or liturgical term  78:9 Hebrew armed and shooting  78:33 Hebrew in  78:33 Or vapor (ESV) Second Psalm: Psalm 78:40–72 Psalm 78:40–72 (Listen) 40 How often they rebelled against him in the wilderness and grieved him in the desert!41 They tested God again and again and provoked the Holy One of Israel.42 They did not remember his power1 or the day when he redeemed them from the foe,43 when he performed his signs in Egypt and his marvels in the fields of Zoan.44 He turned their rivers to blood, so that they could not drink of their streams.45 He sent among them swarms of flies, which devoured them, and frogs, which destroyed them.46 He gave their crops to the destroying locust and the fruit of their labor to the locust.47 He destroyed their vines with hail and their sycamores with frost.48 He gave over their cattle to the hail and their flocks to thunderbolts.49 He let loose on them his burning anger, wrath, indignation, and distress, a company of destroying angels.50 He made a path for his anger; he did not spare them from death, but gave their lives over to the plague.51 He struck down every firstborn in Egypt, the firstfruits of their strength in the tents of Ham.52 Then he led out his people like sheep and guided them in the wilderness like a flock.53 He led them in safety, so that they were not afraid, but the sea overwhelmed their enemies.54 And he brought them to his holy land, to the mountain which his right hand had won.55 He drove out nations before them; he apportioned them for a possession and settled the tribes of Israel in their tents. 56 Yet they tested and rebelled against the Most High God and did not keep his testimonies,57 but turned away and acted treacherously like their fathers; they twisted like a deceitful bow.58 For they provoked him to anger with their high places; they moved him to jealousy with their idols.59 When God heard, he was full of wrath, and he utterly rejected Israel.60 He forsook his dwelling at Shiloh, the tent where he dwelt among mankind,61 and delivered his power to captivity, his glory to the hand of the foe.62 He gave his people over to the sword and vented his wrath on his heritage.63 Fire devoured their young men, and their young women had no marriage song.64 Their priests fell by the sword, and their widows made no lamentation.65 Then the Lord awoke as from sleep, like a strong man shouting because of wine.66 And he put his adversaries to rout; he put them to everlasting shame. 67 He rejected the tent of Joseph; he did not choose the tribe of Ephraim,68 but he chose the tribe of Judah, Mount Zion, which he loves.69 He built his sanctuary like the high heavens, like the earth, which he has founded forever.70 He chose David his servant and took him from the sheepfolds;71 from following the nursing ewes he brought him to shepherd Jacob his people, Israel his inheritance.72 With upright heart he shepherded them and guided them with his skillful hand. Footnotes  78:42 Hebrew hand (ESV) Old Testament: Judges 7:1–18 Judges 7:1–18 (Listen) Gideon's Three Hundred Men 7 Then Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) and all the people who were with him rose early and encamped beside the spring of Harod. And the camp of Midian was north of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley. 2 The LORD said to Gideon, “The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hand, lest Israel boast over me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me.' 3 Now therefore proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, ‘Whoever is fearful and trembling, let him return home and hurry away from Mount Gilead.'” Then 22,000 of the people returned, and 10,000 remained. 4 And the LORD said to Gideon, “The people are still too many. Take them down to the water, and I will test them for you there, and anyone of whom I say to you, ‘This one shall go with you,' shall go with you, and anyone of whom I say to you, ‘This one shall not go with you,' shall not go.” 5 So he brought the people down to the water. And the LORD said to Gideon, “Every one who laps the water with his tongue, as a dog laps, you shall set by himself. Likewise, every one who kneels down to drink.” 6 And the number of those who lapped, putting their hands to their mouths, was 300 men, but all the rest of the people knelt down to drink water. 7 And the LORD said to Gideon, “With the 300 men who lapped I will save you and give the Midianites into your hand, and let all the others go every man to his home.” 8 So the people took provisions in their hands, and their trumpets. And he sent all the rest of Israel every man to his tent, but retained the 300 men. And the camp of Midian was below him in the valley. 9 That same night the LORD said to him, “Arise, go down against the camp, for I have given it into your hand. 10 But if you are afraid to go down, go down to the camp with Purah your servant. 11 And you shall hear what they say, and afterward your hands shall be strengthened to go down against the camp.” Then he went down with Purah his servant to the outposts of the armed men who were in the camp. 12 And the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the people of the East lay along the valley like locusts in abundance, and their camels were without number, as the sand that is on the seashore in abundance. 13 When Gideon came, behold, a man was telling a dream to his comrade. And he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream, and behold, a cake of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Midian and came to the tent and struck it so that it fell and turned it upside down, so that the tent lay flat.” 14 And his comrade answered, “This is no other than the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel; God has given into his hand Midian and all the camp.” 15 As soon as Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, he worshiped. And he returned to the camp of Israel and said, “Arise, for the LORD has given the host of Midian into your hand.” 16 And he divided the 300 men into three companies and put trumpets into the hands of all of them and empty jars, with torches inside the jars. 17 And he said to them, “Look at me, and do likewise. When I come to the outskirts of the camp, do as I do. 18 When I blow the trumpet, I and all who are with me, then blow the trumpets also on every side of all the camp and shout, ‘For the LORD and for Gideon.'” (ESV) New Testament: Acts 3:1–11 Acts 3:1–11 (Listen) The Lame Beggar Healed 3 Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour.1 2 And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. 3 Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. 4 And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” 5 And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. 6 But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” 7 And he took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. 8 And leaping up, he stood and began to walk, and entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 and recognized him as the one who sat at the Beautiful Gate of the temple, asking for alms. And they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. Peter Speaks in Solomon's Portico 11 While he clung to Peter and John, all the people, utterly astounded, ran together to them in the portico called Solomon's. Footnotes  3:1 That is, 3 p.m. (ESV) Gospel: John 1:19–28 John 1:19–28 (Listen) The Testimony of John the Baptist 19 And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?” 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.” 21 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” And he answered, “No.” 22 So they said to him, “Who are you? We need to give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight1 the way of the Lord,' as the prophet Isaiah said.” 24 (Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.) 25 They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, 27 even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” 28 These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing. Footnotes  1:23 Or crying out, ‘In the wilderness make straight (ESV)
It is through the Word of God we find salvation, His plan to redeem His chosen people. As a Believer meditates on Scripture, God´s process of sanctification takes place. John the Baptist comes on the stage in the time God planned to prepare the way of the Messiah as the last prophet and contemporary herald. The plan that God authored and prophecied comes into play. Guest speaker Eduardo Lemos expounds on the story of the birth of John the Baptist and the life of his parents. Read the Passage: Luke 1:57-66 https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%201:57-66&version=NIV
We'll find out more about Herod (Antipas) and why he was no nervous when he thought that Jesus might be John the Baptist, back from the dead. We'll also have an "Apologetics Affirmation" of Scripture and learn about two tools in our apologetics tool belt that will help us validate certain statements made in Mark's gospel. This message was preached by Pastor Clark Cothern at Living Water Community Church, Ypsilanti, MI, on Sunday, August 31st. Web: www.lw-cc.org
Old Testament: Ezra 1–2 Ezra 1–2 (Listen) The Proclamation of Cyrus 1 In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing: 2 “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. 3 Whoever is among you of all his people, may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and rebuild the house of the LORD, the God of Israel—he is the God who is in Jerusalem. 4 And let each survivor, in whatever place he sojourns, be assisted by the men of his place with silver and gold, with goods and with beasts, besides freewill offerings for the house of God that is in Jerusalem.” 5 Then rose up the heads of the fathers' houses of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and the Levites, everyone whose spirit God had stirred to go up to rebuild the house of the LORD that is in Jerusalem. 6 And all who were about them aided them with vessels of silver, with gold, with goods, with beasts, and with costly wares, besides all that was freely offered. 7 Cyrus the king also brought out the vessels of the house of the LORD that Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem and placed in the house of his gods. 8 Cyrus king of Persia brought these out in the charge of Mithredath the treasurer, who counted them out to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah. 9 And this was the number of them: 30 basins of gold, 1,000 basins of silver, 29 censers, 10 30 bowls of gold, 410 bowls of silver, and 1,000 other vessels; 11 all the vessels of gold and of silver were 5,400. All these did Sheshbazzar bring up, when the exiles were brought up from Babylonia to Jerusalem. The Exiles Return 2 Now 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 captive to Babylonia. They returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his own town. 2 They came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispar, Bigvai, Rehum, and Baanah. The number of the men of the people of Israel: 3 the sons of Parosh, 2,172. 4 The sons of Shephatiah, 372. 5 The sons of Arah, 775. 6 The sons of Pahath-moab, namely the sons of Jeshua and Joab, 2,812. 7 The sons of Elam, 1,254. 8 The sons of Zattu, 945. 9 The sons of Zaccai, 760. 10 The sons of Bani, 642. 11 The sons of Bebai, 623. 12 The sons of Azgad, 1,222. 13 The sons of Adonikam, 666. 14 The sons of Bigvai, 2,056. 15 The sons of Adin, 454. 16 The sons of Ater, namely of Hezekiah, 98. 17 The sons of Bezai, 323. 18 The sons of Jorah, 112. 19 The sons of Hashum, 223. 20 The sons of Gibbar, 95. 21 The sons of Bethlehem, 123. 22 The men of Netophah, 56. 23 The men of Anathoth, 128. 24 The sons of Azmaveth, 42. 25 The sons of Kiriath-arim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, 743. 26 The sons of Ramah and Geba, 621. 27 The men of Michmas, 122. 28 The men of Bethel and Ai, 223. 29 The sons of Nebo, 52. 30 The sons of Magbish, 156. 31 The sons of the other Elam, 1,254. 32 The sons of Harim, 320. 33 The sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 725. 34 The sons of Jericho, 345. 35 The sons of Senaah, 3,630. 36 The priests: the sons of Jedaiah, of the house of Jeshua, 973. 37 The sons of Immer, 1,052. 38 The sons of Pashhur, 1,247. 39 The sons of Harim, 1,017. 40 The Levites: the sons of Jeshua and Kadmiel, of the sons of Hodaviah, 74. 41 The singers: the sons of Asaph, 128. 42 The sons of the gatekeepers: the sons of Shallum, the sons of Ater, the sons of Talmon, the sons of Akkub, the sons of Hatita, and the sons of Shobai, in all 139. 43 The temple servants: the sons of Ziha, the sons of Hasupha, the sons of Tabbaoth, 44 the sons of Keros, the sons of Siaha, the sons of Padon, 45 the sons of Lebanah, the sons of Hagabah, the sons of Akkub, 46 the sons of Hagab, the sons of Shamlai, the sons of Hanan, 47 the sons of Giddel, the sons of Gahar, the sons of Reaiah, 48 the sons of Rezin, the sons of Nekoda, the sons of Gazzam, 49 the sons of Uzza, the sons of Paseah, the sons of Besai, 50 the sons of Asnah, the sons of Meunim, the sons of Nephisim, 51 the sons of Bakbuk, the sons of Hakupha, the sons of Harhur, 52 the sons of Bazluth, the sons of Mehida, the sons of Harsha, 53 the sons of Barkos, the sons of Sisera, the sons of Temah, 54 the sons of Neziah, and the sons of Hatipha. 55 The sons of Solomon's servants: the sons of Sotai, the sons of Hassophereth, the sons of Peruda, 56 the sons of Jaalah, the sons of Darkon, the sons of Giddel, 57 the sons of Shephatiah, the sons of Hattil, the sons of Pochereth-hazzebaim, and the sons of Ami. 58 All the temple servants and the sons of Solomon's servants were 392. 59 The following were those who came up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, Addan, and Immer, though they could not prove their fathers' houses or their descent, whether they belonged to Israel: 60 the sons of Delaiah, the sons of Tobiah, and the sons of Nekoda, 652. 61 Also, of the sons of the priests: the sons of Habaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, and the sons of Barzillai (who had taken a wife from the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite, and was called by their name). 62 These sought their registration among those enrolled in the genealogies, but they were not found there, and so they were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. 63 The governor told them that they were not to partake of the most holy food, until there should be a priest to consult Urim and Thummim. 64 The whole assembly together was 42,360, 65 besides their male and female servants, of whom there were 7,337, and they had 200 male and female singers. 66 Their horses were 736, their mules were 245, 67 their camels were 435, and their donkeys were 6,720. 68 Some of the heads of families, when they came to the house of the LORD that is in Jerusalem, made freewill offerings for the house of God, to erect it on its site. 69 According to their ability they gave to the treasury of the work 61,000 darics1 of gold, 5,000 minas2 of silver, and 100 priests' garments. 70 Now the priests, the Levites, some of the people, the singers, the gatekeepers, and the temple servants lived in their towns, and all the rest of Israel3 in their towns. Footnotes  2:69 A daric was a coin weighing about 1/4 ounce or 8.5 grams  2:69 A mina was about 1 1/4 pounds or 0.6 kilogram  2:70 Hebrew all Israel (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 29 Psalm 29 (Listen) Ascribe to the Lord Glory A Psalm of David. 29 Ascribe to the LORD, O heavenly beings,1 ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.2 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.2 3 The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD, over many waters.4 The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty. 5 The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon.6 He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf, and Sirion like a young wild ox. 7 The voice of the LORD flashes forth flames of fire.8 The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. 9 The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth3 and strips the forests bare, and in his temple all cry, “Glory!” 10 The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.11 May the LORD give strength to his people! May the LORD bless4 his people with peace! Footnotes  29:1 Hebrew sons of God, or sons of might  29:2 Or in holy attire  29:9 Revocalization yields makes the oaks to shake  29:11 Or The Lord will give . . . The Lord will bless (ESV) New Testament: Mark 8 Mark 8 (Listen) Jesus Feeds the Four Thousand 8 In those days, when again a great crowd had gathered, and they had nothing to eat, he called his disciples to him and said to them, 2 “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. 3 And if I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way. And some of them have come from far away.” 4 And his disciples answered him, “How can one feed these people with bread here in this desolate place?” 5 And he asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” They said, “Seven.” 6 And he directed the crowd to sit down on the ground. And he took the seven loaves, and having given thanks, he broke them and gave them to his disciples to set before the people; and they set them before the crowd. 7 And they had a few small fish. And having blessed them, he said that these also should be set before them. 8 And they ate and were satisfied. And they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. 9 And there were about four thousand people. And he sent them away. 10 And immediately he got into the boat with his disciples and went to the district of Dalmanutha.1 The Pharisees Demand a Sign 11 The Pharisees came and began to argue with him, seeking from him a sign from heaven to test him. 12 And he sighed deeply in his spirit and said, “Why does this generation seek a sign? Truly, I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.” 13 And he left them, got into the boat again, and went to the other side. The Leaven of the Pharisees and Herod 14 Now they had forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. 15 And he cautioned them, saying, “Watch out; beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.”2 16 And they began discussing with one another the fact that they had no bread. 17 And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why are you discussing the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18 Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember? 19 When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?” They said to him, “Twelve.” 20 “And the seven for the four thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?” And they said to him, “Seven.” 21 And he said to them, “Do you not yet understand?” Jesus Heals a Blind Man at Bethsaida 22 And they came to Bethsaida. And some people brought to him a blind man and begged him to touch him. 23 And he took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village, and when he had spit on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, “Do you see anything?” 24 And he looked up and said, “I see people, but they look like trees, walking.” 25 Then Jesus3 laid his hands on his eyes again; and he opened his eyes, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26 And he sent him to his home, saying, “Do not even enter the village.” Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ 27 And Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. And on the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” 28 And they told him, “John the Baptist; and others say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets.” 29 And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, “You are the Christ.” 30 And he strictly charged them to tell no one about him. Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection 31 And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” 34 And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35 For whoever would save his life4 will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. 36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? 37 For what can a man give in return for his soul? 38 For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” Footnotes  8:10 Some manuscripts Magadan, or Magdala  8:15 Some manuscripts the Herodians  8:25 Greek he  8:35 The same Greek word can mean either soul or life, depending on the context; twice in this verse and once in verse 36 and once in verse 37 (ESV)
As we determine we are in the last generation before Jesus returns, global supernatural events are awakening nations to His return. None more powerful than what happened in Cuba on my last evangelism mission to Las Tunas District. We brought suitcases of medicines, wheelchairs, eye glasses, cell phones, finances, soccer balls and most importantly the heart of Jesus and the fire of the Holy Spirit. Jesus promised to baptize us with the Holy Spirit and with fire as per John the Baptist. Hear our story of God's glory.
Jeremiah 28:1-17 - Father Simon talks about the importance of understanding prophecy. Matthew 14:13-21 - Jesus hears about the death of John the Baptist and he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place. Fr. Simon talks about the importance of prayer and discernment in difficult times. Words of the Day: Church Fr. Simon talks about the meaning of the word Church. Do we go to Mass because we like a particular priest or type of music or do we go to give praise to God? Letters: Dan – What is Kabbalah and what should we know about it. How does it compare to Christianity? Anonymous – When Jesus said: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me,” what did he mean? Keith – Why do we pray certain prayers such as the Memorare differently? Desiree – Are eulogies allowed at a funeral Mass? Mary Grace – Question about a cantor who was in an inappropriate relationship. Callers (45:00) Irene – Why don't people genuflect anymore? Angela – What is the truth about Mary Magdalene? Anne – Can my brother with Down Syndrome have a Catholic funeral
Luke's account leads us to a glorious moment, a prophetic word from the lips of Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist. Healed of his muteness, he bursts out in proclamations of God's power to save, covenant faithfulness, and incredible mercy.
When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns. When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said, “This is a deserted place and it is already late; dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.” He said to them, “There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.” But they said to him, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.” Then he said, “Bring them here to me,” and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds. They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over– twelve wicker baskets full. Those who ate were about five thousand men, not counting women and children.
Following the death of John the Baptist, Jesus goes to a deserted place, only to find a vast crowd in need of his teaching and guidance. There he nourishes body and soul as he takes, blesses, breaks and gives the bread and fish to feed the 5000. August 1, 2022 - Cathedral Rectory - Superior, WI Fr. Andrew Ricci - www.studyprayserve.com
The history of Israel knows at least 31 Zechariahs. We know the last of these by the Greek version of his name Zacharias, the Father of John the Baptist, whom the Lord Jesus Christ called "the greatest prophet born of woman." What? How can this be?We can't spend a season on the Book of Zechariah the Levite priest and prophet and not conclude it with the last of his name, Zecharias of the New Testament and the greatest prophet born from woman, his son John the Baptist.This episode will answer many of the mysteries of John's birth, purpose and ministry.A very special thank you to Darien Ethington for his musical talents in this episode.Those wishing more on this topic are invited to explore the author's greater Gospel Feast Series available in hard copy or eReader.
- Press the PLAY button to listen to the catechesis of the day and share if you like -+ A reading from the holy Gospel, according to Matthew +When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist,he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself.The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns.When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd,his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said,"This is a deserted place and it is already late;dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villagesand buy food for themselves."He said to them, "There is no need for them to go away;give them some food yourselves."But they said to him,"Five loaves and two fish are all we have here."Then he said, "Bring them here to me,"and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass.Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven,he said the blessing, broke the loaves,and gave them to the disciples,who in turn gave them to the crowds.They all ate and were satisfied,and they picked up the fragments left over–twelve wicker baskets full.Those who ate were about five thousand men,not counting women and children.The Gospel of the Lord.
When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns. When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick. Matthew 14:13-14Humanly speaking, Jesus' heart was grieved by the death of John the Baptist. He loved John and was deeply saddened by his beheading. So He withdrew in a boat to a deserted place alone. But the crowds were hungry for more! They wanted to see Jesus and listen to Him. They knew many who were ill and wanted Jesus to heal them. So they sought Him out despite the fact that He had withdrawn from the crowd to be alone.What was Jesus' reaction? Did He look at them and sigh, saying to Himself, “Why don't they leave me alone. Don't they know I am grieving?” No. Instead, Jesus was filled with mercy and compassion for them, and He went to them to heal many of their sick.This gives us insight into the heart and compassion of our Lord. Many times, we are afraid to go to God. We are afraid to turn to Him because of our sin. We are afraid of what He will think and say to us. We feel guilty and ashamed and, as a result, fail to seek Him out.But just as Jesus had compassion for those who sought Him out in this story, so also He will ALWAYS have the deepest of compassion for us every time we seek Him out. If we find our lives steeped in sin, but run to Him anyway, He will look at us with compassion and mercy. He never tires of us returning to Him, seeking His healing and mercy. We should always have hope in Him and turn to Him with the greatest confidence.Reflect, today, upon how comfortable you are in turning to Jesus just as you are. Are you afraid or worried about what He thinks of you? Are you ashamed of your sin or weakness? Do you worry He will judge you and not care? Have confidence in His abundance of mercy and run to Him without fear.My most compassionate Lord, help me to trust in Your love and compassion. Help me to know that You always long for me to come to You. As You never tire of me coming to You, may I never tire of coming to You. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2022 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
Old Testament: 2 Chronicles 33–34 2 Chronicles 33–34 (Listen) Manasseh Reigns in Judah 33 Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem. 2 And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD drove out before the people of Israel. 3 For he rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had broken down, and he erected altars to the Baals, and made Asheroth, and worshiped all the host of heaven and served them. 4 And he built altars in the house of the LORD, of which the LORD had said, “In Jerusalem shall my name be forever.” 5 And he built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of the LORD. 6 And he burned his sons as an offering in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, and used fortune-telling and omens and sorcery, and dealt with mediums and with necromancers. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, provoking him to anger. 7 And the carved image of the idol that he had made he set in the house of God, of which God said to David and to Solomon his son, “In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, I will put my name forever, 8 and I will no more remove the foot of Israel from the land that I appointed for your fathers, if only they will be careful to do all that I have commanded them, all the law, the statutes, and the rules given through Moses.” 9 Manasseh led Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem astray, to do more evil than the nations whom the LORD destroyed before the people of Israel. Manasseh's Repentance 10 The LORD spoke to Manasseh and to his people, but they paid no attention. 11 Therefore the LORD brought upon them the commanders of the army of the king of Assyria, who captured Manasseh with hooks and bound him with chains of bronze and brought him to Babylon. 12 And when he was in distress, he entreated the favor of the LORD his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers. 13 He prayed to him, and God was moved by his entreaty and heard his plea and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD was God. 14 Afterward he built an outer wall for the city of David west of Gihon, in the valley, and for the entrance into the Fish Gate, and carried it around Ophel, and raised it to a very great height. He also put commanders of the army in all the fortified cities in Judah. 15 And he took away the foreign gods and the idol from the house of the LORD, and all the altars that he had built on the mountain of the house of the LORD and in Jerusalem, and he threw them outside of the city. 16 He also restored the altar of the LORD and offered on it sacrifices of peace offerings and of thanksgiving, and he commanded Judah to serve the LORD, the God of Israel. 17 Nevertheless, the people still sacrificed at the high places, but only to the LORD their God. 18 Now the rest of the acts of Manasseh, and his prayer to his God, and the words of the seers who spoke to him in the name of the LORD, the God of Israel, behold, they are in the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel. 19 And his prayer, and how God was moved by his entreaty, and all his sin and his faithlessness, and the sites on which he built high places and set up the Asherim and the images, before he humbled himself, behold, they are written in the Chronicles of the Seers.1 20 So Manasseh slept with his fathers, and they buried him in his house, and Amon his son reigned in his place. Amon's Reign and Death 21 Amon was twenty-two years old when he began to reign, and he reigned two years in Jerusalem. 22 And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, as Manasseh his father had done. Amon sacrificed to all the images that Manasseh his father had made, and served them. 23 And he did not humble himself before the LORD, as Manasseh his father had humbled himself, but this Amon incurred guilt more and more. 24 And his servants conspired against him and put him to death in his house. 25 But the people of the land struck down all those who had conspired against King Amon. And the people of the land made Josiah his son king in his place. Josiah Reigns in Judah 34 Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty-one years in Jerusalem. 2 And he did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, and walked in the ways of David his father; and he did not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. 3 For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was yet a boy, he began to seek the God of David his father, and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherim, and the carved and the metal images. 4 And they chopped down the altars of the Baals in his presence, and he cut down the incense altars that stood above them. And he broke in pieces the Asherim and the carved and the metal images, and he made dust of them and scattered it over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. 5 He also burned the bones of the priests on their altars and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. 6 And in the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, and Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, in their ruins2 all around, 7 he broke down the altars and beat the Asherim and the images into powder and cut down all the incense altars throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem. The Book of the Law Found 8 Now in the eighteenth year of his reign, when he had cleansed the land and the house, he sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, and Maaseiah the governor of the city, and Joah the son of Joahaz, the recorder, to repair the house of the LORD his God. 9 They came to Hilkiah the high priest and gave him the money that had been brought into the house of God, which the Levites, the keepers of the threshold, had collected from Manasseh and Ephraim and from all the remnant of Israel and from all Judah and Benjamin and from the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 10 And they gave it to the workmen who were working in the house of the LORD. And the workmen who were working in the house of the LORD gave it for repairing and restoring the house. 11 They gave it to the carpenters and the builders to buy quarried stone, and timber for binders and beams for the buildings that the kings of Judah had let go to ruin. 12 And the men did the work faithfully. Over them were set Jahath and Obadiah the Levites, of the sons of Merari, and Zechariah and Meshullam, of the sons of the Kohathites, to have oversight. The Levites, all who were skillful with instruments of music, 13 were over the burden-bearers and directed all who did work in every kind of service, and some of the Levites were scribes and officials and gatekeepers. 14 While they were bringing out the money that had been brought into the house of the LORD, Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the LORD given through3 Moses. 15 Then Hilkiah answered and said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the house of the LORD.” And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan. 16 Shaphan brought the book to the king, and further reported to the king, “All that was committed to your servants they are doing. 17 They have emptied out the money that was found in the house of the LORD and have given it into the hand of the overseers and the workmen.” 18 Then Shaphan the secretary told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a book.” And Shaphan read from it before the king. 19 And when the king heard the words of the Law, he tore his clothes. 20 And the king commanded Hilkiah, Ahikam the son of Shaphan, Abdon the son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah the king's servant, saying, 21 “Go, inquire of the LORD for me and for those who are left in Israel and in Judah, concerning the words of the book that has been found. For great is the wrath of the LORD that is poured out on us, because our fathers have not kept the word of the LORD, to do according to all that is written in this book.” Huldah Prophesies Disaster 22 So Hilkiah and those whom the king had sent4 went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tokhath, son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe (now she lived in Jerusalem in the Second Quarter) and spoke to her to that effect. 23 And she said to them, “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: ‘Tell the man who sent you to me, 24 Thus says the LORD, Behold, I will bring disaster upon this place and upon its inhabitants, all the curses that are written in the book that was read before the king of Judah. 25 Because they have forsaken me and have made offerings to other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands, therefore my wrath will be poured out on this place and will not be quenched. 26 But to the king of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the LORD, thus shall you say to him, Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: Regarding the words that you have heard, 27 because your heart was tender and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and its inhabitants, and you have humbled yourself before me and have torn your clothes and wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the LORD. 28 Behold, I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace, and your eyes shall not see all the disaster that I will bring upon this place and its inhabitants.'” And they brought back word to the king. 29 Then the king sent and gathered together all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 And the king went up to the house of the LORD, with all the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the priests and the Levites, all the people both great and small. And he read in their hearing all the words of the Book of the Covenant that had been found in the house of the LORD. 31 And the king stood in his place and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD and to keep his commandments and his testimonies and his statutes, with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant that were written in this book. 32 Then he made all who were present in Jerusalem and in Benjamin join in it. And the inhabitants of Jerusalem did according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers. 33 And Josiah took away all the abominations from all the territory that belonged to the people of Israel and made all who were present in Israel serve the LORD their God. All his days they did not turn away from following the LORD, the God of their fathers. Footnotes  33:19 One Hebrew manuscript, Septuagint; most Hebrew manuscripts of Hozai  34:6 The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain  34:14 Hebrew by the hand of  34:22 Syriac, Vulgate; Hebrew lacks had sent (ESV) Psalm: Psalm 27 Psalm 27 (Listen) The Lord Is My Light and My Salvation Of David. 27 The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold1 of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? 2 When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. 3 Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet2 I will be confident. 4 One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire3 in his temple. 5 For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock. 6 And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me, and I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and make melody to the LORD. 7 Hear, O LORD, when I cry aloud; be gracious to me and answer me!8 You have said, “Seek4 my face.” My heart says to you, “Your face, LORD, do I seek.”59 Hide not your face from me. Turn not your servant away in anger, O you who have been my help. Cast me not off; forsake me not, O God of my salvation!10 For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the LORD will take me in. 11 Teach me your way, O LORD, and lead me on a level path because of my enemies.12 Give me not up to the will of my adversaries; for false witnesses have risen against me, and they breathe out violence. 13 I believe that I shall look6 upon the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living!14 Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD! Footnotes  27:1 Or refuge  27:3 Or in this  27:4 Or meditate  27:8 The command (seek) is addressed to more than one person  27:8 The meaning of the Hebrew verse is uncertain  27:13 Other Hebrew manuscripts Oh! Had I not believed that I would look (ESV) New Testament: Mark 6 Mark 6 (Listen) Jesus Rejected at Nazareth 6 He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. 4 And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” 5 And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And he marveled because of their unbelief. And he went about among the villages teaching. Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles 7 And he called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. 8 He charged them to take nothing for their journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in their belts—9 but to wear sandals and not put on two tunics.1 10 And he said to them, “Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you depart from there. 11 And if any place will not receive you and they will not listen to you, when you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.” 12 So they went out and proclaimed that people should repent. 13 And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them. The Death of John the Baptist 14 King Herod heard of it, for Jesus'2 name had become known. Some3 said, “John the Baptist4 has been raised from the dead. That is why these miraculous powers are at work in him.” 15 But others said, “He is Elijah.” And others said, “He is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” 16 But when Herod heard of it, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.” 17 For it was Herod who had sent and seized John and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip's wife, because he had married her. 18 For John had been saying to Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother's wife.” 19 And Herodias had a grudge against him and wanted to put him to death. But she could not, 20 for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he kept him safe. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed, and yet he heard him gladly. 21 But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his nobles and military commanders and the leading men of Galilee. 22 For when Herodias's daughter came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests. And the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it to you.” 23 And he vowed to her, “Whatever you ask me, I will give you, up to half of my kingdom.” 24 And she went out and said to her mother, “For what should I ask?” And she said, “The head of John the Baptist.” 25 And she came in immediately with haste to the king and asked, saying, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” 26 And the king was exceedingly sorry, but because of his oaths and his guests he did not want to break his word to her. 27 And immediately the king sent an executioner with orders to bring John's5 head. He went and beheaded him in the prison 28 and brought his head on a platter and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. 29 When his disciples heard of it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb. Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand 30 The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught. 31 And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. 32 And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves. 33 Now many saw them going and recognized them, and they ran there on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. 34 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things. 35 And when it grew late, his disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the hour is now late. 36 Send them away to go into the surrounding countryside and villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 37 But he answered them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said to him, “Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii6 worth of bread and give it to them to eat?” 38 And he said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” And when they had found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” 39 Then he commanded them all to sit down in groups on the green grass. 40 So they sat down in groups, by hundreds and by fifties. 41 And taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing and broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples to set before the people. And he divided the two fish among them all. 42 And they all ate and were satisfied. 43 And they took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and of the fish. 44 And those who ate the loaves were five thousand men. Jesus Walks on the Water 45 Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. 46 And after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray. 47 And when evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and he was alone on the land. 48 And he saw that they were making headway painfully, for the wind was against them. And about the fourth watch of the night7 he came to them, walking on the sea. He meant to pass by them, 49 but when they saw him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost, and cried out, 50 for they all saw him and were terrified. But immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” 51 And he got into the boat with them, and the wind ceased. And they were utterly astounded, 52 for they did not understand about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened. Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret 53 When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and moored to the shore. 54 And when they got out of the boat, the people immediately recognized him 55 and ran about the whole region and began to bring the sick people on their beds to wherever they heard he was. 56 And wherever he came, in villages, cities, or countryside, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and implored him that they might touch even the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well. Footnotes  6:9 Greek chiton, a long garment worn under the cloak next to the skin  6:14 Greek his  6:14 Some manuscripts He  6:14 Greek baptizer; also verse 24  6:27 Greek his  6:37 A denarius was a day's wage for a laborer  6:48 That is, between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. (ESV)
This sermon is a continuation of our current series "Year Thru the Bible". After Jesus is baptized by John the Baptist, he is driven out into the wilderness to overcome temptation. Because Jesus overcame temptation, we can too! We hope this sermon blesses you!
A New Series on the Book of Mark. Today, Pastor Michael is starting a series on the Book of Mark. A series of fast past action stories, Mark is the ‘good stuff' in one book, even being the shortest of the Gospels. In these first two verses of Mark, the Old Testament is being quoted (Malachi and Isaiah, respectively) and it's stating someone is going to come as an announcer for Jesus. And that someone is John, as in John the Baptist. So, if this book's about Jesus, why start with John? In ancient times, when someone important was traveling, they sent an ambassador to ensure the roads were in good condition and to prepare the destination for their arrival. Therefore, John was the herald for Jesus in these references. John himself is an interesting character; a straight-up ‘caveman' kinda guy! Camelhair tunic, no haircuts, eating honey and locusts…the whole nine yards! Jesus choosing John as his forerunner tells us a lot about Jesus and how he chooses those that are exactly right for the job. Mark doesn't give us a lot of background information on Jesus except that he came from Nazareth. Mark first distributed this book amongst Romans. The Romans were action-oriented; not talkers. In Roman culture people could rise from obscurity to greatness. That's a huge reason this Gospel is so ‘action-oriented'. Jesus was being baptized by John as an act of leadership. To show an example of repentance. Therefore John baptized Jesus in the Jordan river to show his followers he would submit to the Lord and it was a powerful symbol. What could the baptism of Jesus foreshadow as a future event? The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus was the foreshadow of His baptism. So after He was baptized a voice came from heaven and a dove floated down from heaven. The voice that was heard was not for Jesus' benefit; it was for the others that were there and listening. The Lord was exclaiming that Jesus was His son, the son of God. Verses can be found today in Mark 1: 1-11. Scripture quotations marked CSB have been taken from the Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible® and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
Matthew 16:13-17 NLT “When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” “Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.” Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being.” There was confusion amongst the people early on, even among his own disciples, about who Jesus truly was. Was He John the Baptist returned from the grave after his execution? Or was He one of the Old Testament prophets coming back for “round two?” Men were trying to identify Jesus as another man, when He was actually God. Is your faith your own? Do you feel you inherited it from someone or maybe felt pressure at some point in your life to believe? Listen closely once again: “Jesus … asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” “Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.” Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16:13-16 NLT) Courage is making your own decision about Jesus and sticking by it. Each person must make their own choice and “own” their own faith. No one should be talked into a relationship with Jesus, so no one can talk them out of it either. As Jesus told Peter, “You didn't learn this truth from a human, but from God. He reveals the truth to hearts.” Today, for you, all that matters is who you say Jesus is, to you, for you. Let's pray: “Lord Jesus, You are who You said and say You are—the Messiah, the Son of the Living God. As above, so below. Amen.”
Jesus does not come out of nowhere. John has prepared the way, and God the Father is empowering him. What does this mean? That God has intentionally come to live among men, to show what God is really like, with an introduction from a man (John the Baptist). It is an interconnected web called the Kingdom of God, and we are living in it now if we are living in Christ.
Herod the tetrarch heard of the reputation of Jesus and said to his servants, “This man is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why mighty powers are at work in him.” Now Herod had arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, for John had said to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.” Although he wanted to kill him, he feared the people, for they regarded him as a prophet. But at a birthday celebration for Herod, the daughter of Herodias performed a dance before the guests and delighted Herod so much that he swore to give her whatever she might ask for. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests who were present, he ordered that it be given, and he had John beheaded in the prison. His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. His disciples came and took away the corpse and buried him; and they went and told Jesus.
Jeremiah 26, 11-16: First reading is from a sermon by the prophet Jeremiah in the temple. He's warning them that the temple will be destroyed. So there is this confrontation between Jeremiah and the authorities of Judah. He declares his innocence like Christ and is eventually saved by the intervention of the king. In the Gospel of the day we have the account of the death of John the Baptist (Matt 14, 1-12). Now Herod is in his own party, so he is in his own element. The wine is flowing. He has nobody to guide him. He has already a pretty hedonistic attitude, and this leads to the beheading of John the Baptist. Titian has a spectacular painting of the moment when Salome gives the head of John the Baptist to her mother, Herodias. It dates to around 1515 and I remember seeing it with excitement in the Doria Pamphilj Gallery in Rome. Lord, let me not be afraid of the cross, or what people call the cross. The seal of Opus Dei: the Cross at the heart of the world. It is not like a medal that encircles the cross, or restricts its extent, or where it ought to be. The circle is not just a circle. It is a globe. Music: J.S. Bach, "Jesu, meine Freude", BWV 227. Thumbnail: Titian, "Salome with the head of John the Baptist," 1515, Galleria Doria Pamphilj, Rome. See more meditations on my YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/EricNicolai/videos
Follow our other podcasts at http://www.dailyradiobible.com Partner with us to produce these podcasts by donating HERE. We are reading through he New Living Translation. Follow Today's reading: Isaiah 60-62 ; John 1 Today's readings are Isaiah 60 – 62 and John 1. We are reading from the New Living Translation. Jesus calls himself the Stairway. Prophets like Isaiah and John the Baptist were calling Jesus the Light, the Anointed One, the Messiah. But here, at the end of this chapter, Jesus calls himself the Stairway. Then he said, I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between heaven and earth. (Jn1:51 NLT) Jesus has come to unite heaven with earth, to bring the two together, he is the self described stairway between both. This is Jesus dream for the world, union with God. he beacons us to pray God's will on heaven as it is on earth. Jesus has made this union a reality in his incarnation, atonement and ascension, that's the gospel. And Now he invites the whole world to live in this new reality. He is stairway, and he is inviting us to take steps with him, in his life, the life that he shares with the Father and Spirit. He has come to call us to follow him, like Nathaniel, sitting there, earth bound under his tree, he invites him and us to see something greater things. union between God and man, union between heaven and earth. Jesus is the stairway. And in him we will live and move and have our being – In him we can move from under our trees, upward and forward, receiving grace, strength, light and hope as we follow him. Rejoice while you are on the stairs, moving upward and forward in Him.
“Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” Matthew 14:8What a bad day to say the least. St. John the Baptist was beheaded at the request of Salome, the daughter of Herodias. John was in prison for speaking the truth to Herod regarding his marriage, and Herodias was filled with hate toward John. So Herodias had her daughter dance in the presence of Herod and his guests. Herod was so impressed, he promised Salome up to half of his kingdom. Instead, her request was for the head of John the Baptist.Even on the surface this is a bizarre request. Salome is promised up to half of the kingdom and, instead, she asks for the death of a good and holy man. In fact, Jesus said of John that no one born of woman was greater than he was. So why all the hate by Herodias and her daughter?This sad incident illustrates the power of anger in its most extreme form. When anger brews and grows it causes deep passion, so much so that it clouds a person's thinking and reason. Hate and revenge can consume a person and lead to complete foolishness. Herod is also a witness of extreme irrationality here. He is pressured to do what he does not want to do because he is afraid of doing the right thing. He is overwhelmed by the hate in the heart of Herodias and, as a result, gives in to the execution of John whom he actually appeared to like and enjoyed listening to.Normally we seek to be inspired by the good example of others. But, in this case, we find we can be “inspired” in a different way. We should use the witness of John's execution as an opportunity to look at any struggles we have with anger, resentment and especially hate. Hate is an ugly passion that can sneak in and cause much destruction in our lives and the lives of others. Even the beginnings of this disordered passion should be confessed and overcome.Reflect, today, upon whether you see any hate in your heart. Have you held on to some grudge or bitterness that is not going away? Is that passion growing and causing damage to your life and the lives of others? If so, resolve to let go of it and forgive. It's the right thing to do.My freeing Lord, give me the grace I need to look into my heart and see any tendencies of anger, resentment and hatred. Please purify me of these and set me free. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2022 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
For additional notes and resources check out Douglas' website.Last time we looked at the first two days; today we will read about the third and fourth days. A lot is compressed into one chapter. Since the fourth day spans verses 43-51, it is not clear how 2:1 takes place "on the third day." Unless, that is, "the next day" (vv.29,35,43) all refers to the same day, in which case 1:19-51 covers two days instead of four. Ancient conventions of chronology and storytelling are different from ours -- and that's okay. Compression is also visible in Mark 1, Mark 6, Luke 24, and a number of other passages.35 The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, 36 and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” 37 The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. 38 When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?”DAY THREE (vv.35-42)Again, John directs his disciples to Christ.Jesus receives them and spends time with them.Note: this is not the (later) call to become fishers of men of Matthew 4/Mark 1/Luke 5.Jesus is a relationship builder, not just a preacher.The urgency of Mark 1 and the open schedule of John 1 are both important for evangelism.Andrew brings his brother to Christ.Jesus calls Simon (Shim'on, in Hebrew) Cephas, which is Aramaic for "rock." The name has prophetic and descriptive qualities. Jesus sees into both the character of Peter and his future.Notice that a number of times he clarifies potentially unfamiliar terms: Rabbi (v.38); Messiah (v.41); Cephas (v.42); other clarifications will follow (9:7; 20:16; etc). This suggests that the target audience of this gospel are not (primarily) Jewish. And yet there are abundant references to the events and theology of the Old Testament.39 He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o'clock in the afternoon. 40 One of the two who heard John speak and followed him was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He first found his brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated Anointed). 42 He brought Simon to Jesus, who looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas” (which is translated Peter).DAY FOUR (vv.43-51)43 The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” 46 Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” 47 When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” 48 Nathanael asked him, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” 49 Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” 50 Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” 51 And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”Jesus goes north, from Judea to Galilee, and meets Philip, who in turn speaks to Nathanael.The first three men are from Bethsaida, a fishing village only discovered in the 1980s, and join Jesus' band.Nathanael is from Cana (21:2), a town we will read about in the next chapter. Nathanael may be the apostle Bartholomew.The interaction with Nathanael is fraught with significance.Nathanael is skeptical, having stereotyped Nazareth and all who come from this backwards town. Philip responds perfectly to the skeptic: "Come and see." Jesus comments on Nathanael's genuineness -- how he spoke his mind. Nathanael agrees with Jesus' summary of his character, amazed at his insight. (See also 2:24-25.)Once Jesus tells Nathanael that he saw him while he was under a fig tree, Nathanael is stunned, and quickly changes his assessment of Jesus to agree with Philip's -- that he is the Messiah. (One wonders, what exactly was Jesus referring to in connection with the fig tree?) Jesus' (seemingly miraculous) view of Nathanael (v.48) may entail powers similar to those of Elisha in 2 Kings 6:8-12, or Ezekiel in Ezekiel 8:1-18; 21:21-23.Jesus ends this interaction with Nathanael by alluding to Genesis 28:12: "And [Jacob] dreamed that there was a ladder set up on the earth, the top of it reaching to heaven; and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it." In other words, Jesus, the Son of Man, is the "stairway to heaven"! See also John 3:13.To sum up, the true Israelite ought to recognize Jesus as the Messiah, once initial doubts or objections have been met. This is a far cry from how most Jews -- and especially their leaders -- received Jesus. True worshippers of God must come to him in spirit and truth (John 4:24). "Truth" here means genuineness of faith, not doctrinal truth. (Not that this is unimportant.)ConclusionAlready in chapter 1 we are seeing exactly how the Word looks when it has become flesh -- how God moves among people. Every interaction of Jesus tells us something about God.Notice the minor theme in John, "Come and see."There are 4 instances.1:39. Jesus invites Andrew and another follower of John the Baptist to "come and see" -- to spend time with him.1:46: Philip invites Nathanael to meet Jesus: "Come and see."4:29: The Samaritan Woman invites her town to "come and see."11:34: Lazarus's mourners, reply to Jesus' question about where the body has been laid, invite him, "Lord, come and see."The Bible invites us to "taste and see" that the Lord is good (Ps 34:8; 1 Pet 2:3).Just as someone invited you and me to "come and see," let's continue to reach out, inviting others to "come and see."
Fr. Mike brings us into the book of Consolation as we continue through Isaiah, and learn about how God never fails to comfort his people, even in the worst of times. He also introduces us to the Prophet Ezekiel, as we read about God accompanying his people into exile, even after their unfaithfulness.Today's readings are Isaiah 39-40, Ezekiel 1, and Proverbs 11:29-31. For the complete reading plan, visit ascensionpress.com/bibleinayear. Please note: The Bible contains adult themes that may not be suitable for children - parental discretion is advised.