Psalm 99 The Voice (VOICE)
1 The Eternal is the king ruling over all;
6 Moses and Aaron were two of His priests;
8 You answered them, Eternal our God;
Deuteronomy 9:1-5 The Voice (VOICE)
Throughout the Bible, God challenges His people to make sure the poor and needy are well cared for. Grinding poverty and deprivation destroy the wholeness of life that God intends for all people. However, as Moses warns here, achieving prosperity can lead people to be complacent and self-sufficient and to forget that God has been the One who has provided for them.
Perhaps no warning is more urgently needed for God’s people in our own wealthy and comfortable society. Prosperity can tempt us to forget about God and to act as if we can take care of everything through our own means. But with prosperity often comes poverty. These humbling, testing experiences are meant to build the qualities of gratitude and trust into our lives, and they keep us from forgetting God even when we do enjoy prosperity.
9 Moses: Listen to me, Israel! Today you’re going to cross the Jordan and enter the land you’ll take away from nations that are bigger and stronger than you. They live in huge cities that have defense walls as high as the sky. 2 They’re big and tall, giants descended from the Anakim. You know all about them from the 12 spies I sent into the land—you’ve heard the saying, “Who can ever fight with the descendants of Anak?” 3 So I want you to know today that it will be the Eternal your God who will go across the Jordan ahead of you. A blazing fire, He’ll destroy those nations. He’ll subdue them so you can destroy them quickly and take their place, as He has promised you will. 4 When the Eternal your God has driven them out ahead of you, then don’t begin to believe He gave you this land because you’re so good and righteous! It’s just the opposite; He is giving you their land because those other nations are so bad! 5 It’s not because you’ve conducted yourselves so well or because you have such pure hearts that you’re going to take the land; the Eternal your God is driving out those other nations ahead of you because they’re so wicked. He’s keeping His word, the promise He made to your ancestors, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
Acts 3:11-16 The Voice (VOICE)
9-11 A crowd ran to the commotion, and they gathered around this man in an open area called Solomon’s Porch. There he was, standing on his own two feet, holding on to Peter and John. They knew exactly who he was—the beggar they passed at the beautiful gate every day. Everyone was absolutely amazed at this wonderful miracle; they were speechless, stunned.
Just as Jesus promised, the Spirit comes on believers in power, enabling them to do miracles like this. Now they can participate in the truth of the good news.
Peter (to the crowd): 12 Why are you so amazed, my fellow Israelites? Why are you staring at my friend and me as though we did this miracle through our own power or made this fellow walk by our own holiness? 13 We didn’t do this—God did! The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob—the God of our ancestors has glorified Jesus, God’s servant—the same Jesus whom you betrayed and rejected in front of Pilate, even though Pilate was going to release Him. 14 He is the Holy and Righteous One, but you rejected Him and asked for a murderer to be released to you instead. 15 You not only rejected Him, but you killed Him—the very Author of life! But God raised Jesus from the dead, whom my friend John and I have seen with our own eyes. 16 So that’s how this miracle happened: we have faith in the name of Jesus, and He is the power that made this man strong—this man who is known to all of you. It is faith in Jesus that has given this man his complete health here today, in front of all of you.
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