Psalm 16-17 Living Bible (TLB)
16 Save me, O God, because I have come to you for refuge. 2 I said to him, “You are my Lord; I have no other help but yours.” 3 I want the company of the godly men and women in the land; they are the true nobility. 4 Those choosing other gods shall all be filled with sorrow; I will not offer the sacrifices they do or even speak the names of their gods.
5 The Lord himself is my inheritance, my prize. He is my food and drink, my highest joy! He guards all that is mine. 6 He sees that I am given pleasant brooks and meadows as my share![a] What a wonderful inheritance! 7 I will bless the Lord who counsels me; he gives me wisdom in the night. He tells me what to do.
8 I am always thinking of the Lord; and because he is so near, I never need to stumble or fall.
9 Heart, body, and soul are filled with joy. 10 For you will not leave me among the dead; you will not allow your beloved one to rot in the grave. 11 You have let me experience the joys of life and the exquisite pleasures of your own eternal presence.
17 I am pleading for your help, O Lord; for I have been honest and have done what is right, and you must listen to my earnest cry! 2 Publicly acquit me, Lord, for you are always fair. 3 You have tested me and seen that I am good. You have come even in the night and found nothing amiss and know that I have told the truth. 4 I have followed your commands and have not gone along with cruel and evil men. 5 My feet have not slipped from your paths.
6 Why am I praying like this? Because I know you will answer me, O God! Yes, listen as I pray. 7 Show me your strong love in wonderful ways, O Savior of all those seeking your help against their foes. 8 Protect me as you would the pupil of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings as you hover over me.
9 My enemies encircle me with murder in their eyes. 10 They are pitiless and arrogant. Listen to their boasting. 11 They close in upon me and are ready to throw me to the ground. 12 They are like lions eager to tear me apart, like young lions hiding and waiting their chance.
13-14 Lord, arise and stand against them. Push them back! Come and save me from these men of the world whose only concern is earthly gain—these men whom you have filled with your treasures so that their children and grandchildren are rich and prosperous.
15 But as for me, my contentment is not in wealth but in seeing you and knowing all is well between us. And when I awake in heaven, I will be fully satisfied, for I will see you face-to-face.
Psalm 24 Living Bible (TLB)
24 The earth belongs to God! Everything in all the world is his! 2 He is the one who pushed the oceans back to let dry land appear.[a]
3 Who may climb the mountain of the Lord and enter where he lives? Who may stand before the Lord? 4 Only those with pure hands and hearts, who do not practice dishonesty and lying. 5 They will receive God’s own goodness[b] as their blessing from him, planted in their lives by God himself, their Savior. 6 These are the ones who are allowed to stand before the Lord and worship the God of Jacob.
7 Open up, O ancient gates, and let the King of Glory in. 8 Who is this King of Glory? The Lord, strong and mighty, invincible in battle. 9 Yes, open wide the gates and let the King of Glory in.
10 Who is this King of Glory? The Commander of all of heaven’s armies!
Psalm 32:1-4 Living Bible (TLB)
32 1-2 What happiness for those whose guilt has been forgiven! What joys when sins are covered over! What relief for those who have confessed their sins and God has cleared their record.
3 There was a time when I wouldn’t admit what a sinner I was.[a] But my dishonesty made me miserable and filled my days with frustration. 4 All day and all night your hand was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water on a sunny day
Romans 10:1-13 Living Bible (TLB)
10 Dear brothers, the longing of my heart and my prayer is that the Jewish people might be saved. 2 I know what enthusiasm they have for the honor of God, but it is misdirected zeal. 3 For they don’t understand that Christ has died to make them right with God. Instead they are trying to make themselves good enough to gain God’s favor by keeping the Jewish laws and customs, but that is not God’s way of salvation. 4 They don’t understand that Christ gives to those who trust in him everything they are trying to get by keeping his laws. He ends all of that.
5 For Moses wrote that if a person could be perfectly good and hold out against temptation all his life and never sin once, only then could he be pardoned and saved. 6 But the salvation that comes through faith says, “You don’t need to search the heavens to find Christ and bring him down to help you,” and, 7 “You don’t need to go among the dead to bring Christ back to life again.”
8 For salvation that comes from trusting Christ—which is what we preach—is already within easy reach of each of us; in fact, it is as near as our own hearts and mouths. 9 For if you tell others with your own mouth that Jesus Christ is your Lord and believe in your own heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in his heart that a man becomes right with God; and with his mouth he tells others of his faith, confirming his salvation.[a]
11 For the Scriptures tell us that no one who believes in Christ will ever be disappointed. 12 Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect: they all have the same Lord who generously gives his riches to all those who ask him for them. 13 Anyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.
Matthew 24:15-31 Living Bible (TLB)
15 “So, when you see the horrible thing[a] (told about by Daniel* the prophet) standing in a holy place (Note to the reader: You know what is meant!*), 16 then those in Judea must flee into the Judean hills. 17 Those on their porches[b] must not even go inside to pack before they flee. 18 Those in the fields should not return to their homes for their clothes.
19 “And woe to pregnant women and to those with babies in those days. 20 And pray that your flight will not be in winter, or on the Sabbath.[c] 21 For there will be persecution such as the world has never before seen in all its history and will never see again.
22 “In fact, unless those days are shortened, all mankind will perish. But they will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen people.[d]
23 “Then if anyone tells you, ‘The Messiah has arrived at such and such a place, or has appeared here or there,’ don’t believe it. 24 For false Christs shall arise, and false prophets, and will do wonderful miracles so that if it were possible, even God’s chosen ones[e] would be deceived. 25 See, I have warned you.
26 “So if someone tells you the Messiah has returned and is out in the desert, don’t bother to go and look. Or, that he is hiding at a certain place, don’t believe it! 27 For as the lightning flashes across the sky from east to west, so shall my coming be, when I, the Messiah,[f] return. 28 And wherever the carcass is, there the vultures will gather.
29 “Immediately after the persecution of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give light, and the stars will seem to fall from the heavens,[g] and the powers overshadowing the earth will be convulsed.*
30 “And then at last the signal of my coming[h] will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning all around the earth. And the nations of the world will see me arrive in the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. 31 And I shall send forth my angels with the sound of a mighty trumpet blast, and they shall gather my chosen ones from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven.[i]