Psalm 75-76 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
God Judges the Wicked
For the choir director: “Do Not Destroy.” A psalm of Asaph. A song.
1 We give thanks to you, God;
2 “When I choose a time,
6 Exaltation does not come
9 As for me, I will tell about him forever;
10 “I will cut off all the horns of the wicked,
God, the Powerful Judge
For the choir director: with stringed instruments. A psalm of Asaph. A song.
1 God is known in Judah;
4 You are resplendent and majestic
7 And you—you are to be feared.[b]
11 Make and keep your vows
Psalm 23 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
The Good Shepherd
A psalm of David.
1 The Lord is my shepherd;
5 You prepare a table before me
Psalm 27 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
1 The Lord is my light and my salvation—
4 I have asked one thing from the Lord;
7 Lord, hear my voice when I call;
11 Because of my adversaries,
13 I am certain that I will see the Lord’s goodness
Esther 2:5-8 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
5 In the fortress of Susa, there was a Jewish man named Mordecai son of Jair, son of Shimei, son of Kish, a Benjaminite. 6 He had been taken into exile from Jerusalem with the other captives when King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon took King Jeconiah of Judah into exile. 7 Mordecai was the legal guardian of his cousin[a] Hadassah (that is, Esther), because she had no father or mother. The young woman had a beautiful figure and was extremely good-looking. When her father and mother died, Mordecai had adopted her as his own daughter.
8 When the king’s command and edict became public knowledge and when many young women were gathered at the fortress of Susa under Hegai’s supervision, Esther was taken to the palace, into the supervision of Hegai, keeper of the women.
Esther 2:15-23 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
Esther Becomes Queen
15 Esther was the daughter of Abihail, the uncle of Mordecai who had adopted her as his own daughter. When her turn came to go to the king, she did not ask for anything except what Hegai, the king’s eunuch, keeper of the women, suggested. Esther gained favor in the eyes of everyone who saw her.
16 She was taken to King Ahasuerus in the palace in the tenth month, the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign. 17 The king loved Esther more than all the other women. She won more favor and approval from him than did any of the other virgins. He placed the royal crown on her head and made her queen in place of Vashti. 18 The king held a great banquet for all his officials and staff. It was Esther’s banquet. He freed his provinces from tax payments and gave gifts worthy of the king’s bounty.
Mordecai Saves the King
19 When the virgins were gathered a second time, Mordecai was sitting at the King’s Gate. 20 (Esther had not revealed her family background or her ethnicity, as Mordecai had directed. She obeyed Mordecai’s orders, as she always had while he raised her.)
21 During those days while Mordecai was sitting at the King’s Gate, Bigthan and Teresh, two of the king’s eunuchs who guarded the entrance, became infuriated and planned to assassinate[a] King Ahasuerus. 22 When Mordecai learned of the plot, he reported it to Queen Esther, and she told the king on Mordecai’s behalf. 23 When the report was investigated and verified, both men were hanged on the gallows. This event was recorded in the Historical Record in the king’s presence.
Acts 17:16-34 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
Paul in Athens
16 While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, he was deeply distressed when he saw that the city was full of idols. 17 So he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with those who worshiped God, as well as in the marketplace every day with those who happened to be there. 18 Some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers also debated with him. Some said, “What is this ignorant show-off[a] trying to say?”
Others replied, “He seems to be a preacher of foreign deities”—because he was telling the good news about Jesus and the resurrection.
19 They took him and brought him to the Areopagus,[b] and said, “May we learn about this new teaching you are presenting? 20 Because what you say sounds strange to us, and we want to know what these things mean.” 21 Now all the Athenians and the foreigners residing there spent their time on nothing else but telling or hearing something new.
The Areopagus Address
22 Paul stood in the middle of the Areopagus and said: “People of Athens! I see that you are extremely religious in every respect. 23 For as I was passing through and observing the objects of your worship, I even found an altar on which was inscribed: ‘To an Unknown God.’ Therefore, what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. 24 The God who made the world and everything in it—he is Lord of heaven and earth—does not live in shrines made by hands. 25 Neither is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives everyone life and breath and all things. 26 From one man[c] he has made every nationality to live over the whole earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live. 27 He did this so that they might seek God, and perhaps they might reach out and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 28 For in him we live and move and have our being, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also his offspring.’ 29 Since we are God’s offspring then, we shouldn’t think that the divine nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image fashioned by human art and imagination.
30 “Therefore, having overlooked the times of ignorance, God now commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has set a day when he is going to judge the world in righteousness by the man he has appointed. He has provided proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.”
32 When they heard about the resurrection of the dead, some began to ridicule him, but others said, “We’d like to hear from you again about this.” 33 So Paul left their presence. 34 However, some people joined him and believed, including Dionysius the Areopagite, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.
John 12:44-50 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
A Summary of Jesus’s Mission
44 Jesus cried out, “The one who believes in me believes not in me, but in him who sent me. 45 And the one who sees me sees him who sent me. 46 I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me would not remain in darkness. 47 If anyone hears my words and doesn’t keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 The one who rejects me and doesn’t receive my sayings has this as his judge: [a] The word I have spoken will judge him on the last day. 49 For I have not spoken on my own, but the Father himself who sent me has given me a command to say everything I have said. 50 I know that his command is eternal life. So the things that I speak, I speak just as the Father has told me.”