Psalm 143-145The Message (MSG)
A David Psalm
143 1-2 Listen to this prayer of mine, God;
3-6 The enemy hunted me down;
7-10 Hurry with your answer, God!
11-12 Keep up your reputation, God—give me life!
A David Psalm
144 1-2 Blessed be God, my mountain,
3-4 I wonder why you care, God—
5-8 Step down out of heaven, God;
9-10 O God, let me sing a new song to you,
11 Rescue me from the enemy sword,
12-14 Make our sons in their prime
15 How blessed the people who have all this!
145 I lift you high in praise, my God, O my King!
2 I’ll bless you every day,
3 God is magnificent; he can never be praised enough.
4 Generation after generation stands in awe of your work;
5 Your beauty and splendor have everyone talking;
6 Your marvelous doings are headline news;
7 The fame of your goodness spreads across the country;
8 God is all mercy and grace—
9 God is good to one and all;
10-11 Creation and creatures applaud you, God;
They talk about the glories of your rule,
12 Letting the world know of your power for good,
13 Your kingdom is a kingdom eternal;
God always does what he says,
14 God gives a hand to those down on their luck,
15 All eyes are on you, expectant;
16 Generous to a fault,
17 Everything God does is right—
18 God’s there, listening for all who pray,
19 He does what’s best for those who fear him—
20 God sticks by all who love him,
21 My mouth is filled with God’s praise.
1 Corinthians 14:21-40The Message (MSG)
20-25 To be perfectly frank, I’m getting exasperated with your infantile thinking. How long before you grow up and use your head—your adult head? It’s all right to have a childlike unfamiliarity with evil; a simple no is all that’s needed there. But there’s far more to saying yes to something. Only mature and well-exercised intelligence can save you from falling into gullibility. It’s written in Scripture that God said,
In strange tongues
So where does it get you, all this speaking in tongues no one understands? It doesn’t help believers, and it only gives unbelievers something to gawk at. Plain truth-speaking, on the other hand, goes straight to the heart of believers and doesn’t get in the way of unbelievers. If you come together as a congregation and some unbelieving outsiders walk in on you as you’re all praying in tongues, unintelligible to each other and to them, won’t they assume you’ve taken leave of your senses and get out of there as fast as they can? But if some unbelieving outsiders walk in on a service where people are speaking out God’s truth, the plain words will bring them up against the truth and probe their hearts. Before you know it, they’re going to be on their faces before God, recognizing that God is among you.
26-33 So here’s what I want you to do. When you gather for worship, each one of you be prepared with something that will be useful for all: Sing a hymn, teach a lesson, tell a story, lead a prayer, provide an insight. If prayers are offered in tongues, two or three’s the limit, and then only if someone is present who can interpret what you’re saying. Otherwise, keep it between God and yourself. And no more than two or three speakers at a meeting, with the rest of you listening and taking it to heart. Take your turn, no one person taking over. Then each speaker gets a chance to say something special from God, and you all learn from each other. If you choose to speak, you’re also responsible for how and when you speak. When we worship the right way, God doesn’t stir us up into confusion; he brings us into harmony. This goes for all the churches—no exceptions.
34-36 Wives must not disrupt worship, talking when they should be listening, asking questions that could more appropriately be asked of their husbands at home. God’s Book of the law guides our manners and customs here. Wives have no license to use the time of worship for unwarranted speaking. Do you—both women and men—imagine that you’re a sacred oracle determining what’s right and wrong? Do you think everything revolves around you?
37-38 If any one of you thinks God has something for you to say or has inspired you to do something, pay close attention to what I have written. This is the way the Master wants it. If you won’t play by these rules, God can’t use you. Sorry.
39-40 Three things, then, to sum this up: When you speak forth God’s truth, speak your heart out. Don’t tell people how they should or shouldn’t pray when they’re praying in tongues that you don’t understand. Be courteous and considerate in everything.