Isaiah 41:17-43:13 New Living Translation (NLT)
17 “When the poor and needy search for water and there is none,
21 “Present the case for your idols,”
25 “But I have stirred up a leader who will approach from the north.
26 “Who told you from the beginning
The Lord’s Chosen Servant
42 “Look at my servant, whom I strengthen.
5 God, the Lord, created the heavens and stretched them out.
8 “I am the Lord; that is my name!
A Song of Praise to the Lord
10 Sing a new song to the Lord!
14 He will say, “I have long been silent;
Israel’s Failure to Listen and See
18 “Listen, you who are deaf!
21 Because he is righteous,
23 Who will hear these lessons from the past
The Savior of Israel
43 But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you.
5 “Do not be afraid, for I am with you.
8 Bring out the people who have eyes but are blind,
10 “But you are my witnesses, O Israel!” says the Lord.
Ephesians 2 New Living Translation (NLT)
Made Alive with Christ
2 Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. 2 You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world.[a] He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. 3 All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.
4 But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, 5 that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) 6 For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. 7 So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.
8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Oneness and Peace in Christ
11 Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders. You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who were proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts. 12 In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope. 13 But now you have been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.
14 For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. 15 He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups. 16 Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.
17 He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and peace to the Jews who were near. 18 Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.
A Temple for the Lord
19 So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family. 20 Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself. 21 We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. 22 Through him you Gentiles are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit.
Psalm 67 New Living Translation (NLT)
For the choir director: A song. A psalm, to be accompanied by stringed instruments.
1 May God be merciful and bless us.
2 May your ways be known throughout the earth,
5 May the nations praise you, O God.
Proverbs 23:29-35 New Living Translation (NLT)
29 Who has anguish? Who has sorrow?
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