Daily reading for Tuesday, November 19, 2013

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Ezekiel 39:1-40:27; James 2:18-3:18; Psalms 118:1-18; Proverbs 28:2 (New English Translation)

Ezekiel 39-40:27

39 “As for you, son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say: ‘This is what the sovereign Lord says: Look, I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal! I will turn you around and drag you along; I will lead you up from the remotest parts of the north and bring you against the mountains of Israel. I will knock your bow out of your left hand and make your arrows fall from your right hand. You will fall dead on the mountains of Israel, you and all your troops and the people who are with you. I give you as food to every kind of bird and every wild beast. You will fall dead in the open field; for I have spoken, declares the sovereign Lord. I will send fire on Magog and those who live securely in the coastlands; then they will know that I am the Lord.

“‘I will make my holy name known in the midst of my people Israel; I will not let my holy name be profaned anymore. Then the nations will know that I am the Lord, the Holy One of Israel. Realize that it is coming and it will be done, declares the sovereign Lord. It is the day I have spoken about.

“‘Then those who live in the cities of Israel will go out and use the weapons for kindling—the shields, bows and arrows, war clubs and spears—they will burn them for seven years. 10 They will not need to take wood from the field or cut down trees from the forests, because they will make fires with the weapons. They will take the loot from those who looted them and seize the plunder of those who plundered them, declares the sovereign Lord.

11 “‘On that day I will assign Gog a grave in Israel. It will be the valley of those who travel east of the sea; it will block the way of the travelers. There they will bury Gog and all his horde; they will call it the valley of Hamon-Gog. 12 For seven months Israel will bury them, in order to cleanse the land. 13 All the people of the land will bury them, and it will be a memorial for them on the day I magnify myself, declares the sovereign Lord. 14 They will designate men to scout continually through the land, burying those who remain on the surface of the ground, in order to cleanse it. They will search for seven full months. 15 When the scouts survey the land and see a human bone, they will place a sign by it, until those assigned to burial duty have buried it in the valley of Hamon-Gog. 16 (A city by the name of Hamonah will also be there.) They will cleanse the land.’

17 “As for you, son of man, this is what the sovereign Lord says: Tell every kind of bird and every wild beast: ‘Assemble and come! Gather from all around to my slaughter which I am going to make for you, a great slaughter on the mountains of Israel! You will eat flesh and drink blood. 18 You will eat the flesh of warriors and drink the blood of the princes of the earth—the rams, lambs, goats, and bulls, all of them fattened animals of Bashan. 19 You will eat fat until you are full, and drink blood until you are drunk, at my slaughter which I have made for you. 20 You will fill up at my table with horses and charioteers, with warriors and all the soldiers,’ declares the sovereign Lord.

21 “I will display my majesty among the nations. All the nations will witness the judgment I have executed, and the power I have exhibited among them. 22 Then the house of Israel will know that I am the Lord their God, from that day forward. 23 The nations will know that the house of Israel went into exile due to their iniquity, for they were unfaithful to me. So I hid my face from them and handed them over to their enemies; all of them died by the sword. 24 According to their uncleanness and rebellion I have dealt with them, and I hid my face from them.

25 “Therefore this is what the sovereign Lord says: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob, and I will have mercy on the entire house of Israel. I will be zealous for my holy name. 26 They will bear their shame for all their unfaithful acts against me, when they live securely on their land with no one to make them afraid. 27 When I have brought them back from the peoples and gathered them from the countries of their enemies, I will magnify myself among them in the sight of many nations. 28 Then they will know that I am the Lord their God, because I sent them into exile among the nations, and then gathered them into their own land. I will not leave any of them in exile any longer. 29 I will no longer hide my face from them, when I pour out my Spirit on the house of Israel, declares the sovereign Lord.”

Vision of the New Temple

40 In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after the city was struck down, on this very day, the hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me there. By means of divine visions he brought me to the land of Israel and placed me on a very high mountain, and on it was a structure like a city, to the south. When he brought me there, I saw a man whose appearance was like bronze, with a linen cord and a measuring stick in his hand. He was standing in the gateway. The man said to me, “Son of man, watch closely, listen carefully, and pay attention to everything I show you, for you have been brought here so that I can show it to you. Tell the house of Israel everything you see.”

I saw a wall all around the outside of the temple. In the man’s hand was a measuring stick 10½ feet long. He measured the thickness of the wall as 10½ feet, and its height as 10½ feet. Then he went to the gate facing east. He climbed its steps and measured the threshold of the gate as 10½ feet deep. The alcoves were 10½ feet long and 10½ feet wide; between the alcoves were 8¾ feet. The threshold of the gate by the porch of the gate facing inward was 10½ feet. Then he measured the porch of the gate facing inward as 10½ feet. He measured the porch of the gate as 14 feet, and its jambs as 3½ feet; the porch of the gate faced inward. 10 There were three alcoves on each side of the east gate; the three had the same measurement, and the jambs on either side had the same measurement. 11 He measured the width of the entrance of the gateway as 17½ feet, and the length of the gateway as 22¾ feet. 12 There was a barrier in front of the alcoves, 1¾ feet on either side; the alcoves were 10½ feet on either side. 13 He measured the gateway from the roof of one alcove to the roof of the other, a width of 43¾ feet from one entrance to the opposite one. 14 He measured the porch at 105 feet high; the gateway went all around to the jamb of the courtyard. 15 From the front of the entrance gate to the porch of the inner gate was 87½ feet. 16 There were closed windows toward the alcoves and toward their jambs within the gate all around, and likewise for the porches. There were windows all around the inside, and on each jamb were decorative palm trees.

17 Then he brought me to the outer court. I saw chambers there, and a pavement made for the court all around; thirty chambers faced the pavement. 18 The pavement was beside the gates, corresponding to the length of the gates; this was the lower pavement. 19 Then he measured the width from before the lower gate to the front of the exterior of the inner court as 175 feet on the east and on the north.

20 He measured the length and width of the gate of the outer court which faces north. 21 Its alcoves, three on each side, and its jambs and porches had the same measurement as the first gate; 87½ feet long and 43¾ feet wide. 22 Its windows, its porches, and its decorative palm trees had the same measurement as the gate which faced east. Seven steps led up to it, and its porch was in front of them. 23 Opposite the gate on the north and the east was a gate of the inner court; he measured the distance from gate to gate at 175 feet.

24 Then he led me toward the south. I saw a gate on the south. He measured its jambs and its porches; they had the same dimensions as the others. 25 There were windows all around it and its porches, like the windows of the others; 87½ feet long and 43¾ feet wide. 26 There were seven steps going up to it; its porches were in front of them. It had decorative palm trees on its jambs, one on either side. 27 The inner court had a gate toward the south; he measured it from gate to gate toward the south as 175 feet.

New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

James 2:18-3:18

18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith without works and I will show you faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; well and good. Even the demons believe that—and tremble with fear.

20 But would you like evidence, you empty fellow, that faith without works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? 22 You see that his faith was working together with his works and his faith was perfected by works. 23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Now Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 And similarly, was not Rahab the prostitute also justified by works when she welcomed the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

The Power of the Tongue

Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers and sisters, because you know that we will be judged more strictly. For we all stumble in many ways. If someone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect individual, able to control the entire body as well. And if we put bits into the mouths of horses to get them to obey us, then we guide their entire bodies. Look at ships too: Though they are so large and driven by harsh winds, they are steered by a tiny rudder wherever the pilot’s inclination directs. So too the tongue is a small part of the body, yet it has great pretensions. Think how small a flame sets a huge forest ablaze. And the tongue is a fire! The tongue represents the world of wrongdoing among the parts of our bodies. It pollutes the entire body and sets fire to the course of human existence—and is set on fire by hell.

For every kind of animal, bird, reptile, and sea creature is subdued and has been subdued by humankind. But no human being can subdue the tongue; it is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse people made in God’s image. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. These things should not be so, my brothers and sisters. 11 A spring does not pour out fresh water and bitter water from the same opening, does it? 12 Can a fig tree produce olives, my brothers and sisters, or a vine produce figs? Neither can a salt water spring produce fresh water.

True Wisdom

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct he should show his works done in the gentleness that wisdom brings. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfishness in your hearts, do not boast and tell lies against the truth. 15 Such wisdom does not come from above but is earthly, natural, demonic. 16 For where there is jealousy and selfishness, there is disorder and every evil practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, accommodating, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial, and not hypocritical. 18 And the fruit that consists of righteousness is planted in peace among those who make peace.

New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Psalm 118:1-18

Psalm 118

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good
and his loyal love endures!
Let Israel say,
“Yes, his loyal love endures!”
Let the family of Aaron say,
“Yes, his loyal love endures!”
Let the loyal followers of the Lord say,
“Yes, his loyal love endures!”
In my distress I cried out to the Lord.
The Lord answered me and put me in a wide open place.
The Lord is on my side, I am not afraid!
What can people do to me?
The Lord is on my side as my helper.
I look in triumph on those who hate me.
It is better to take shelter in the Lord
than to trust in people.
It is better to take shelter in the Lord
than to trust in princes.
10 All the nations surrounded me.
Indeed, in the name of the Lord I pushed them away.
11 They surrounded me, yes, they surrounded me.
Indeed, in the name of the Lord I pushed them away.
12 They surrounded me like bees.
But they disappeared as quickly as a fire among thorns.
Indeed, in the name of the Lord I pushed them away.
13 “You aggressively attacked me and tried to knock me down,
but the Lord helped me.
14 The Lord gives me strength and protects me;
he has become my deliverer.”
15 They celebrate deliverance in the tents of the godly.
The Lord’s right hand conquers,
16 the Lord’s right hand gives victory,
the Lord’s right hand conquers.
17 I will not die, but live,
and I will proclaim what the Lord has done.
18 The Lord severely punished me,
but he did not hand me over to death.

New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Proverbs 28:2

When a country is rebellious it has many princes,
but by someone who is discerning and knowledgeable order is maintained.

New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

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