Psalm 122

A song of ascents. Of David.

I rejoiced with those who said to me,
    “Let us go to the house of the Lord.”
Our feet are standing
    in your gates, Jerusalem.

Jerusalem is built like a city
    that is closely compacted together.
That is where the tribes go up—
    the tribes of the Lord
to praise the name of the Lord
    according to the statute given to Israel.
There stand the thrones for judgment,
    the thrones of the house of David.

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
    “May those who love(A) you be secure.
May there be peace(B) within your walls
    and security within your citadels.(C)
For the sake of my family and friends,
    I will say, “Peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
    I will seek your prosperity.(D)

On the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar,(A) the edict commanded by the king was to be carried out. On this day the enemies of the Jews had hoped to overpower them, but now the tables were turned and the Jews got the upper hand(B) over those who hated them.(C) The Jews assembled in their cities(D) in all the provinces of King Xerxes to attack those determined to destroy them. No one could stand against them,(E) because the people of all the other nationalities were afraid of them. And all the nobles of the provinces, the satraps, the governors and the king’s administrators helped the Jews,(F) because fear of Mordecai had seized them.(G) Mordecai(H) was prominent(I) in the palace; his reputation spread throughout the provinces, and he became more and more powerful.(J)

The Jews struck down all their enemies with the sword, killing and destroying them,(K) and they did what they pleased to those who hated them.

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18 The Jews in Susa, however, had assembled on the thirteenth and fourteenth, and then on the fifteenth they rested and made it a day of feasting and joy.

19 That is why rural Jews—those living in villages—observe the fourteenth of the month of Adar(A) as a day of joy and feasting, a day for giving presents to each other.(B)

Purim Established

20 Mordecai recorded these events, and he sent letters to all the Jews throughout the provinces of King Xerxes, near and far, 21 to have them celebrate annually the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month of Adar 22 as the time when the Jews got relief(C) from their enemies, and as the month when their sorrow was turned into joy and their mourning into a day of celebration.(D) He wrote them to observe the days as days of feasting and joy and giving presents of food(E) to one another and gifts to the poor.(F)

23 So the Jews agreed to continue the celebration they had begun, doing what Mordecai had written to them.

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“I tell you, my friends,(A) do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.(B) Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered.(C) Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.(D)

“I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God.(E) But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned(F) before the angels of God. 10 And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man(G) will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.(H)

11 “When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say,(I) 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”(J)

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