Daily reading for Wednesday, November 20, 2013

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Ezekiel 40:28-41:26; James 4:1-17; Psalms 118:19-29; Proverbs 28:3-5 (Complete Jewish Bible)

Ezekiel 40:28-41:26

28 He brought me to the inner courtyard through its south gate. He measured this south gate as being the same size; 29 its guardrooms, supports and vestibule were the same size; it had windows and a vestibule surrounding it; it was eighty-seven-and-a-half feet long and forty-three-and-three-quarters feet wide. 30 There was a vestibule around it forty-three-and-three-quarters feet long and eight-and-three-quarters feet wide; 31 this vestibule faced the outer courtyard, palm trees were on its supports, and it had eight steps leading up to it.

32 He brought me into the inner courtyard, went toward the east and measured that gate as being the same size; 33 its guardrooms, supports and vestibule were the same size; it had windows and a vestibule surrounding it; it was eighty-seven-and-a-half feet long and forty-three-and-three-quarters feet wide. 34 Its vestibule faced the outer courtyard, palm trees were on its supports, both on the one side and on the other; and it had eight steps leading up to it.

35 He brought me over to the north gate and measured it as being the same size; 36 it had guardrooms, supports and a vestibule with windows all around; the length was eighty-seven-and-a-half feet and the width forty-three-and-three-quarters feet. 37 Its supports faced the outer courtyard; palm trees were on its supports, both on the one side and on the other; and it had eight steps leading up to it.

38 There was a room with its entry by the supports at the gates where the burnt offerings were washed. 39 In the entranceway to the gate were two tables on the one side and two on the other, on which to slaughter the burnt offerings, sin offerings and guilt offerings. 40 On the outside, as one goes up to the entry of the north gate, were two tables; and on the other side of the entranceway to the gate were two tables. 41 So there were four tables on the one side and four on the other side, by the gate — eight tables on which to slaughter sacrifices. 42 There were four tables of cut stone for the burnt offering, thirty-one-and-a-half inches square and twenty-one inches high, on which to lay the instruments for slaughtering the burnt offerings and other sacrifices. 43 Hooks a handbreadth long were fastened all around the inside of the room; the flesh of the offerings was to be placed on the tables.

44 Outside the inner gate, in the inner courtyard, were rooms for the singers, one facing south alongside the north gate, and one facing north alongside the east gate. 45 He said to me, “This room facing south is for the cohanim in charge of the house; 46 while the room facing north is for the cohanim in charge of the altar; these are the descendants of Tzadok, who are the descendants of Levi designated to approach Adonai and serve him.”

47 Then he measured the courtyard at 175 feet long and 175 feet wide — it was square. The altar was in front of the house.

48 He brought me to the vestibule of the house and measured at eight-and-three-quarters feet the thickness of the walls on either side of its entrance. On each side, these walls extended five-and-a-quarter feet from the side-walls of the vestibule. 49 The length of the vestibule was thirty-five feet and the width nineteen-and-a-quarter feet; steps led up to it. There were columns on each side of the entrance.

41 He brought me to the sanctuary and measured at ten-and-a-half feet the thickness of the walls on either side of its entrance, which was [also] the thickness of [the walls surrounding] the “tent” [that is, the sanctuary together with the Especially Holy Place]. The width of the entrance was seventeen-and-a-half feet. The sides of the entrance were eight-and-three-quarters feet on the one side and the same on the other. He measured its length at seventy feet and its width at thirty-five feet.

Next, he went farther in [to the entranceway leading to the Especially Holy Place] and measured at three-and-a-half feet [the thickness of] each entrance support. He measured at ten-and-a-half feet the total thickness of the walls on either side of the entrance; and he measured at twelve-and-a-quarter feet the width of the entrance. [Continuing into the inner room,] he said to me, “This is the Especially Holy Place.” He measured its length at thirty-five feet and its width at thirty-five feet along the wall nearest the sanctuary.

[On his way out,] he measured the thickness of the wall of the house at ten-and-a-half feet [at ground level], and the width of all the side-rooms surrounding the house, seven feet [at ground level]. There were three floors of side-rooms, thirty on each floor; and the wall around the house was terraced, so that the side-rooms rested on the terraces and were not supported on [the vertical parts of] the wall. The higher side-rooms surrounding the house were wider than the lower ones, as were the passageways next to the side-rooms on each floor; thus the width of the side-rooms plus that of the passageways increased as one went up from floor to floor. The ascent from the lowest floor to the highest was [by a ramp] through the middle floor.

I saw that the house had a raised pavement all around it which extended outward a full rod of ten-and-a-half feet from where the foundations of the side-rooms joined it.

The outer wall of the side-rooms was eight-and-three-quarters feet thick [at ground level], likewise the empty space left [between] the structure containing the side-rooms [and the house itself also measured eight-and-three quarters feet wide]. 10 On all sides around the house itself was a space thirty-five feet wide between it and the [block of] rooms [for the cohanim]. 11 The doors of the side-rooms opened toward an empty space, one door facing north and the other facing south; the empty space was eight-and-three-quarters feet [wide] all around.

12 The building on the west facing the separated yard had a[n interior] width of 122 1/2 feet, a[n interior] length of 157 1/2 feet and exterior walls eight-and-three-quarters feet thick all the way around.

13 He measured the length of the house at 175 feet; then a distance that included [the width of] the separated yard, [the interior width of] the building and [the thickness of] its [front and back exterior] walls, at 175 feet. 14 The distance along the facade of the house on the east through the separated yard[s to the north and south] was 175 feet. 15 He measured the length of the building facing the separated yard behind [the house], together with its galleries on both sides, at 175 feet.

The sanctuary, the inner place and the vestibules [leading from the house] to the courtyard, 16 as well as the thresholds, narrow windows and galleries around these three, had wood panelling around them as far as the thresholds and from the ground up to the windows; and the windows were covered. 17 From the area above the entrance to the interior of the house, as well as outside, and on the entire wall all the way around, both inside and outside, was a pattern 18 consisting of k’ruvim and palm trees, with a palm tree between every two k’ruvim. Every keruv had two faces; 19 so that there was the face of a man toward the palm tree on its one side and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on its other side — this was the pattern all the way around the house. 20 The k’ruvim and palm trees ran from the ground to above the door, and likewise on the wall of the sanctuary. 21 As for the sanctuary, the door-frames were squared, and the appearance of the [Especially] Holy Place was like the appearance [I saw at the K’var River]. 22 The altar was of wood, five-and-a-quarter feet high and three-and-a-half feet long; its length and walls were also of wood. He said to me, “This is the table which is in the presence of Adonai.”

23 The sanctuary had two doors, and the [Especially] Holy Place 24 had two doors. The doors had two swinging leaves each — two leaves for the one door and two for the other. 25 On them, that is, on the doors of the sanctuary, were carved k’ruvim and palm trees like those on the walls; and on the exterior facade of the outside entrance were thick beams of wood. 26 There were narrow windows flanked by palm trees on both sides of the entrance; the side-rooms of the house and the thick beams also [had palm trees].

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

James 4

What is causing all the quarrels and fights among you? Isn’t it your desires battling inside you? You desire things and don’t have them. You kill, and you are jealous, and you still can’t get them. So you fight and quarrel. The reason you don’t have is that you don’t pray! Or you pray and don’t receive, because you pray with the wrong motive, that of wanting to indulge your own desires.

You unfaithful wives! Don’t you know that loving the world is hating God? Whoever chooses to be the world’s friend makes himself God’s enemy! Or do you suppose the Scripture speaks in vain when it says that there is a spirit in us which longs to envy? But the grace he gives is greater, which is why it says,

“God opposes the arrogant,
but to the humble he gives grace.”[a]

Therefore, submit to God. Moreover, take a stand against the Adversary, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and he will come close to you. Clean your hands, sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded people! Wail, mourn, sob! Let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy into gloom! 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

11 Brothers, stop speaking against each other! Whoever speaks against a brother or judges a brother is speaking against Torah and judging Torah. And if you judge Torah, you are not a doer of what Torah says, but a judge. 12 There is but one Giver of Torah; he is also the Judge, with the power to deliver and to destroy. Who do you think you are, judging your fellow human being?

13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such-and-such a city, stay there a year trading and make a profit”! 14 You don’t even know if you will be alive tomorrow! For all you are is a mist that appears for a little while and then disappears. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If Adonai wants it to happen, we will live” to do this or that. 16 But as it is, in your arrogance you boast. All such boasting is evil. 17 So then, anyone who knows the right thing to do and fails to do it is committing a sin.

Footnotes:

  1. James 4:6 Proverbs 3:34
Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

Psalm 118:19-29

19 Open the gates of righteousness for me;
I will enter them and thank Yah.
20 This is the gate of Adonai;
the righteous can enter it.
21 I am thanking you because you answered me;
you became my salvation.

22 The very rock that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone!
23 This has come from Adonai,
and in our eyes it is amazing.
24 This is the day Adonai has made,
a day for us to rejoice and be glad.

25 Please, Adonai! Save us!
Please, Adonai! Rescue us!
26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of Adonai.
We bless you from the house of Adonai.

27 Adonai is God, and he gives us light.
Join in the pilgrim festival with branches
all the way to the horns of the altar.

28 You are my God, and I thank you.
You are my God; I exalt you.
29 Give thanks to Adonai; for he is good,
for his grace continues forever.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 28:3-5

A poor man who oppresses the weak
    is like a downpour that sweeps away all the food.

Those who abandon Torah praise the wicked,
    but those who keep Torah fight them.

Evil people don’t understand justice,
    but those who seek Adonai understand everything.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

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