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Psalm 81:8-14 Common English Bible (CEB)

Listen, my people, I’m warning you!
    If only you would listen to me, Israel.
There must be no foreign god among you.
    You must not bow down to any strange deity.
10 I am the Lord your God,
    who brought you up from Egypt’s land.
    Open your mouth wide—I will fill it up!

11 But my people wouldn’t listen to my voice.
    Israel simply wasn’t agreeable toward me.
12 So I sent them off to follow their willful hearts;
    they followed their own advice.
13 How I wish my people would listen to me!
    How I wish Israel would walk in my ways!
14 Then I would subdue their enemies in a second;
    I would turn my hand against their foes.

Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

Hosea 14 Common English Bible (CEB)

A plea: Return to God

14 [a] Return, Israel, to the Lord your God;
        you have stumbled because of your wickedness.
Prepare to speak
    and return to the Lord;
    say to the Lord,
        “Forgive all wickedness;
            and receive the good.
    Instead of bulls,
        let us offer what we can say:
Assyria won’t save us;
        we won’t ride upon horses;
    we will no longer say, ‘Our God,’
        to the work of our hands.
    In you the orphan finds compassion.”

Divine promise of healing

I will heal their faithlessness;
                I will love them freely,
        for my anger has turned from them.
I will be like the dew to Israel;
        he will blossom like the lily;
        he will cast out his roots like the forests of Lebanon.[b]
His branches will spread out;
        his beauty will be like the olive tree,
        and his fragrance like that of Lebanon.
They will again live beneath my shadow,
        they will flourish like a garden;
    they will blossom like the vine,
        their fragrance will be like the wine of Lebanon.
Ephraim, what do idols have to do with me?
        It is I who answer and look after you.
    I am like a green cypress tree;
        your fruit comes from me.

Be careful

Whoever is wise understands these things.
    Whoever observes carefully knows them.
    Truly, the Lord’s ways are right,
        and the righteous will walk in them,
        but evildoers will stumble in them.


  1. Hosea 14:1 14:2 in Heb
  2. Hosea 14:5 Or like Lebanon
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

Mark 12:28-34 Common English Bible (CEB)

God’s most important command

28 One of the legal experts heard their dispute and saw how well Jesus answered them. He came over and asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?”

29 Jesus replied, “The most important one is Israel, listen! Our God is the one Lord, 30 and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your being, with all your mind, and with all your strength.[a] 31 The second is this, You will love your neighbor as yourself.[b] No other commandment is greater than these.”

32 The legal expert said to him, “Well said, Teacher. You have truthfully said that God is one and there is no other besides him. 33 And to love God with all of the heart, a full understanding, and all of one’s strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself is much more important than all kinds of entirely burned offerings and sacrifices.”

34 When Jesus saw that he had answered with wisdom, he said to him, “You aren’t far from God’s kingdom.” After that, no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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