1 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. 3 Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his[a]; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. 5 For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Zechariah 9:14-10:2New International Version (NIV)
The Lord Will Appear
14 Then the Lord will appear over them; his arrow will flash like lightning. The Sovereign Lord will sound the trumpet; he will march in the storms of the south, 15 and the Lord Almighty will shield them. They will destroy and overcome with slingstones. They will drink and roar as with wine; they will be full like a bowl used for sprinkling[a] the corners of the altar. 16 The Lord their God will save his people on that day as a shepherd saves his flock. They will sparkle in his land like jewels in a crown. 17 How attractive and beautiful they will be! Grain will make the young men thrive, and new wine the young women.
The Lord Will Care for Judah
10 Ask the Lord for rain in the springtime; it is the Lord who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone. 2 The idols speak deceitfully, diviners see visions that lie; they tell dreams that are false, they give comfort in vain. Therefore the people wander like sheep oppressed for lack of a shepherd.
17 From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church.18 When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia.19 I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents.20 You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house.21 I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.
22 “And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there.23 I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me.24 However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
25 “Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again.26 Therefore, I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of any of you.27 For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.28 Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God,[a] which he bought with his own blood.[b]29 I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.30 Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.31 So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.
32 “Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.33 I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing.34 You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions.35 In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ”
36 When Paul had finished speaking, he knelt down with all of them and prayed.37 They all wept as they embraced him and kissed him.38 What grieved them most was his statement that they would never see his face again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.
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