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Deuteronomy 24-26 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 24

Marriage Legislation.[a] When a man, after marrying a woman, is later displeased with her because he finds in her something indecent, and he writes out a bill of divorce and hands it to her, thus dismissing her from his house, if on leaving his house she goes and becomes the wife of another man, and the second husband, too, comes to dislike her and he writes out a bill of divorce and hands it to her, thus dismissing her from his house, or if this second man who has married her dies, then her former husband, who dismissed her, may not again take her as his wife after she has become defiled. That would be an abomination before the Lord, and you shall not bring such guilt upon the land the Lord, your God, is giving you as a heritage.

When a man is newly wed, he shall not go out on a military expedition, nor shall any duty be imposed on him. He shall be exempt for one year for the sake of his family, to bring joy to the wife he has married.

Pledges and Kidnappings. [b]No one shall take a hand mill or even its upper stone as a pledge for debt, for that would be taking as a pledge the debtor’s life.

If anyone is caught kidnapping a fellow Israelite, enslaving or selling the victim, that kidnapper shall be put to death. Thus shall you purge the evil from your midst.

Skin Diseases. In an attack of scaly infection[c] you shall be careful to observe exactly and to carry out all the instructions the levitical priests give you, as I have commanded them: observe them carefully. Remember what the Lord, your God, did to Miriam on the journey after you left Egypt.

Loans and Wages. 10 When you make a loan of any kind to your neighbor, you shall not enter the neighbor’s house to receive the pledge, 11 but shall wait outside until the person to whom you are making the loan brings the pledge outside to you. 12 If the person is poor, you shall not sleep in the pledged garment, 13 but shall definitely return it at sunset, so that your neighbor may sleep in the garment and bless you. That will be your justice before the Lord, your God.

14 You shall not exploit a poor and needy hired servant, whether one of your own kindred or one of the resident aliens who live in your land, within your gates. 15 On each day you shall pay the servant’s wages before the sun goes down, since the servant is poor and is counting on them. Otherwise the servant will cry to the Lord against you, and you will be held guilty.

Individual Responsibility. 16 Parents shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall children be put to death for their parents; only for one’s own crime shall a person be put to death.

Rights of the Unprotected. 17 You shall not deprive the resident alien or the orphan of justice, nor take the clothing of a widow as pledge. 18 For, remember, you were slaves in Egypt, and the Lord, your God, redeemed you from there; that is why I command you to do this.

19 When you reap the harvest in your field and overlook a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; let it be for the resident alien, the orphan, and the widow, so that the Lord, your God, may bless you in all your undertakings. 20 When you knock down the fruit of your olive trees, you shall not go over the branches a second time; let what remains be for the resident alien, the orphan, and the widow. 21 When you pick your grapes, you shall not go over the vineyard a second time; let what remains be for the resident alien, the orphan, and the widow. 22 For remember that you were slaves in the land of Egypt; that is why I command you to do this.

Chapter 25

Limits on Punishments. When there is a dispute and the parties draw near for judgment, and a decision is given, declaring one party in the right and the other in the wrong, if the one in the wrong deserves whipping, the judge shall have him lie down and in the presence of the judge receive the number of lashes the crime warrants. Forty lashes[d] may be given, but no more; or else, if more lashes are added to these many blows, your brother will be degraded in your sight.

Treatment of Oxen.[e] You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out grain.

Levirate Marriage. When brothers live together[f] and one of them dies without a son, the widow of the deceased shall not marry anyone outside the family; but her husband’s brother shall come to her, marrying her and performing the duty of a brother-in-law. The firstborn son she bears shall continue the name of the deceased brother, that his name may not be blotted out from Israel. But if a man does not want to marry his brother’s wife, she shall go up to the elders at the gate and say, “My brother-in-law refuses to perpetuate his brother’s name in Israel and does not intend to perform his duty toward me.” Thereupon the elders of his city shall summon him and speak to him. If he persists in saying, “I do not want to marry her,” [g]his sister-in-law, in the presence of the elders, shall go up to him and strip his sandal from his foot and spit in his face, declaring, “This is how one should be treated who will not build up his brother’s family!” 10 And his name shall be called in Israel, “the house of the man stripped of his sandal.”

Various Precepts. 11 When two men are fighting and the wife of one intervenes to save her husband from the blows of his opponent, if she stretches out her hand and seizes the latter by his genitals, 12 you shall chop off her hand; show no pity.

13 You shall not keep two differing weights in your bag, one heavy and the other light; 14 nor shall you keep two different ephahs[h] in your house, one large and the other small. 15 But use a full and just weight, a full and just ephah, so that you may have a long life on the land the Lord, your God, is giving you. 16 For everyone who does these things, everyone who does what is dishonest, is an abomination to the Lord, your God.

17 [i]Bear in mind what Amalek did to you on the journey after you left Egypt, 18 how he surprised you along the way, weak and weary as you were, and struck down at the rear all those who lagged behind; he did not fear God. 19 Therefore, when the Lord, your God, gives you rest from all your enemies round about in the land which the Lord, your God, is giving you to possess as a heritage, you shall blot out the memory of Amalek from under the heavens. Do not forget!

Chapter 26

Thanksgiving for the Harvest. When you have come into the land which the Lord, your God, is giving you as a heritage, and have taken possession and settled in it, you shall take some first fruits of the various products of the soil which you harvest from the land the Lord, your God, is giving you; put them in a basket and go to the place which the Lord, your God, will choose as the dwelling place for his name. There you shall go to the priest in office at that time and say to him, “Today I acknowledge to the Lord, my God, that I have indeed come into the land which the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.” The priest shall then take the basket from your hands and set it in front of the altar of the Lord, your God. Then you shall declare in the presence of the Lord, your God, “My father was a refugee Aramean[j] who went down to Egypt with a small household and lived there as a resident alien. But there he became a nation great, strong and numerous. When the Egyptians maltreated and oppressed us, imposing harsh servitude upon us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our cry and saw our affliction, our toil and our oppression. Then the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a strong hand and outstretched arm, with terrifying power, with signs and wonders, and brought us to this place, and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 Now, therefore, I have brought the first fruits of the products of the soil which you, Lord, have given me.” You shall set them before the Lord, your God, and you shall bow down before the Lord, your God. 11 Then you and your household, together with the Levite and the resident aliens who live among you, shall celebrate with all these good things which the Lord, your God, has given you.

Declaration Concerning Tithes. 12 When you have finished setting aside all the tithes of your produce in the third year, the year of the tithes, and have given them to the Levite, the resident alien, the orphan and the widow, that they may eat and be satisfied in your own communities, 13 you shall declare before the Lord, your God, “I have purged my house of the sacred portion and I have given it to the Levite, the resident alien, the orphan and the widow, just as you have commanded me. I have not transgressed any of your commandments, nor forgotten any. 14 [k]I have not eaten any of the tithe while in mourning; I have not brought any of it while unclean; I have not offered any of it to the dead. I have thus obeyed the voice of the Lord, my God, and done just as you have commanded me. 15 Look down, then, from heaven, your holy abode, and bless your people Israel and the fields you have given us, as you promised on oath to our ancestors, a land flowing with milk and honey.”

The Covenant. 16 This day the Lord, your God, is commanding you to observe these statutes and ordinances. Be careful, then, to observe them with your whole heart and with your whole being. 17 Today you have accepted the Lord’s agreement: he will be your God, and you will walk in his ways, observe his statutes, commandments, and ordinances, and obey his voice. 18 And today the Lord has accepted your agreement: you will be a people specially his own, as he promised you, you will keep all his commandments, 19 and he will set you high in praise and renown and glory above all nations he has made, and you will be a people holy to the Lord, your God, as he promised.

Footnotes:

  1. 24:1–4 This law is directly concerned only with forbidding a divorced man from remarrying his former wife, and indirectly with checking hasty divorces, by demanding sufficient cause and certain legal formalities. Divorce itself is taken for granted and tolerated as an existing custom whose potential evils this law seeks to lessen. Cf. 22:19, 29; Mal 2:14–16. Something indecent: a rather indefinite phrase, meaning perhaps “immodest conduct,” but possibly including any kind of objectionable conduct. By New Testament times Jewish opinion differed concerning what was sufficient ground for divorce; cf. Mt 19:3.
  2. 24:6 Since the Israelites ground their grain into flour only in sufficient quantity for their current need, to deprive a debtor of his hand mill was equivalent to condemning him to starvation.
  3. 24:8 Scaly infection: the Hebrew word seems to have to do with one or more skin diseases that produce scales, such as psoriasis. Its precise meaning is uncertain. See note on Lv 13:1–14:57.
  4. 25:3 Forty lashes: while the punishment is severe, the law seeks to limit it from being overly harsh and inhumane. Later Jewish practice limited the number to thirty-nine; cf. 2 Cor 11:24.
  5. 25:4 This is comparable in spirit to 22:6–7; Israelites are not to be grasping and calculating. St. Paul argues from this verse that laborers have the right to live on the fruits of their labor; cf. 1 Cor 9:9; 1 Tm 5:18.
  6. 25:5 When brothers live together: when relatives of the same clan, though married, hold their property in common. It was only in this case that the present law was to be observed, since one of its purposes was to keep the property of the deceased within the same clan. Such a marriage of a widow with her brother-in-law is known as a “levirate” marriage from the Latin word levir, meaning “a husband’s brother.”
  7. 25:9–10 The penalty decreed for a man who refuses to comply with this law of family loyalty is public disgrace; the widow is to spit in his face. Some commentators connect this symbolic act with the ceremony mentioned in Ru 4:7, 8.
  8. 25:14 Ephahs: see note on Is 5:10.
  9. 25:17–19 This attack on Israel by Amalek is not mentioned elsewhere in the Old Testament, although it probably was connected with the battle mentioned in Ex 17:8. A campaign against Amalek was carried out by Saul; cf. 1 Sm 15.
  10. 26:5 Aramean: probably in reference to the origin of the patriarchs from Aram Naharaim (cf. Gn 24:10; 25:20; 28:5; 31:20, 24).
  11. 26:14 These are allusions to foreign religious practices. To the dead: to feed the spirits of the dead, or perhaps to worship Baal.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Psalm 99 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Psalm 99[a]

The Holy King

I

The Lord is king, the peoples tremble;
    he is enthroned on the cherubim,[b] the earth quakes.
Great is the Lord in Zion,
    exalted above all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name:
    Holy is he!

II

O mighty king, lover of justice,
    you have established fairness;
    you have created just rule in Jacob.
Exalt the Lord, our God;
    bow down before his footstool;[c]
    holy is he!

III

Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
    Samuel among those who called on his name;
    they called on the Lord, and he answered them.
From the pillar of cloud he spoke to them;
    they kept his decrees, the law he had given them.
O Lord, our God, you answered them;
    you were a forgiving God to them,
    though you punished their offenses.
Exalt the Lord, our God;
    bow down before his holy mountain;
    holy is the Lord, our God.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 99 A hymn to God as the king whose grandeur is most clearly seen on Mount Zion (Ps 99:2) and in the laws given to Israel (Ps 99:4). Israel is special because of God’s word of justice, which was mediated by the revered speakers, Moses, Aaron, and Samuel (Ps 99:6–8). The poem is structured by the threefold statement that God is holy (Ps 99:3, 5, 9) and by the twice-repeated command to praise (Ps 99:5, 9).
  2. 99:1 Enthroned on the cherubim: cherubim were composite beings with animal and human features, common in ancient Near Eastern art. Two cherubim were placed on the ark (or box) of the covenant in the holy of holies. Upon them God was believed to dwell invisibly, cf. Ex 25:20–22; 1 Sm 4:4; 2 Sm 6:2; Ps 80:2.
  3. 99:5 Footstool: a reference to the ark, cf. 1 Chr 28:2; Ps 132:7.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Acts 27:1-26 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 27

Departure for Rome. [a]When it was decided that we should sail to Italy, they handed Paul and some other prisoners over to a centurion named Julius of the Cohort Augusta.[b] We went on board a ship from Adramyttium bound for ports in the province of Asia and set sail. Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, was with us. On the following day we put in at Sidon where Julius was kind enough to allow Paul to visit his friends who took care of him. From there we put out to sea and sailed around the sheltered side of Cyprus because of the headwinds, and crossing the open sea off the coast of Cilicia and Pamphylia we came to Myra in Lycia.

Storm and Shipwreck. There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship that was sailing to Italy and put us on board. For many days we made little headway, arriving at Cnidus only with difficulty, and because the wind would not permit us to continue our course we sailed for the sheltered side of Crete off Salmone. We sailed past it with difficulty and reached a place called Fair Havens, near which was the city of Lasea.

Much time had now passed and sailing had become hazardous because the time of the fast[c] had already gone by, so Paul warned them, 10 “Men, I can see that this voyage will result in severe damage and heavy loss not only to the cargo and the ship, but also to our lives.” 11 The centurion, however, paid more attention to the pilot and to the owner of the ship than to what Paul said. 12 Since the harbor was unfavorably situated for spending the winter, the majority planned to put out to sea from there in the hope of reaching Phoenix, a port in Crete facing west-northwest, there to spend the winter.

13 A south wind blew gently, and thinking they had attained their objective, they weighed anchor and sailed along close to the coast of Crete. 14 Before long an offshore wind of hurricane force called a “Northeaster” struck. 15 Since the ship was caught up in it and could not head into the wind we gave way and let ourselves be driven. 16 We passed along the sheltered side of an island named Cauda and managed only with difficulty to get the dinghy under control. 17 They hoisted it aboard, then used cables to undergird the ship. Because of their fear that they would run aground on the shoal of Syrtis, they lowered the drift anchor and were carried along in this way. 18 We were being pounded by the storm so violently that the next day they jettisoned some cargo, 19 and on the third day with their own hands they threw even the ship’s tackle overboard. 20 Neither the sun nor the stars were visible for many days, and no small storm raged. Finally, all hope of our surviving was taken away.

21 When many would no longer eat, Paul stood among them and said, “Men, you should have taken my advice and not have set sail from Crete and you would have avoided this disastrous loss. 22 I urge you now to keep up your courage; not one of you will be lost, only the ship. 23 For last night an angel of the God to whom [I] belong and whom I serve stood by me 24 and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You are destined to stand before Caesar; and behold, for your sake, God has granted safety to all who are sailing with you.’ 25 Therefore, keep up your courage, men; I trust in God that it will turn out as I have been told. 26 We are destined to run aground on some island.”

Footnotes:

  1. 27:1–28:16 Here Luke has written a stirring account of adventure on the high seas, incidental to his main purpose of showing how well Paul got along with his captors and how his prophetic influence saved the lives of all on board. The recital also establishes the existence of Christian communities in Puteoli and Rome. This account of the voyage and shipwreck also constitutes the final “we-section” in Acts (see note on Acts 16:10–17).
  2. 27:1 Cohort Augusta: the presence of a Cohort Augusta in Syria during the first century A.D. is attested in inscriptions. Whatever the historical background to this information given by Luke may be, the name Augusta serves to increase the prominence and prestige of the prisoner Paul whose custodians bear so important a Roman name.
  3. 27:9 The time of the fast: the fast kept on the occasion of the Day of Atonement (Lv 16:29–31), which occurred in late September or early October.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

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