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Psalm 18-19New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Psalm 18

Royal Thanksgiving for Victory

To the leader. A Psalm of David the servant of the Lord, who addressed the words of this song to the Lord on the day when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said:

I love you, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,
    my God, my rock in whom I take refuge,
    my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
    so I shall be saved from my enemies.

The cords of death encompassed me;
    the torrents of perdition assailed me;
the cords of Sheol entangled me;
    the snares of death confronted me.

In my distress I called upon the Lord;
    to my God I cried for help.
From his temple he heard my voice,
    and my cry to him reached his ears.

Then the earth reeled and rocked;
    the foundations also of the mountains trembled
    and quaked, because he was angry.
Smoke went up from his nostrils,
    and devouring fire from his mouth;
    glowing coals flamed forth from him.
He bowed the heavens, and came down;
    thick darkness was under his feet.
10 He rode on a cherub, and flew;
    he came swiftly upon the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering around him,
    his canopy thick clouds dark with water.
12 Out of the brightness before him
    there broke through his clouds
    hailstones and coals of fire.
13 The Lord also thundered in the heavens,
    and the Most High uttered his voice.[a]
14 And he sent out his arrows, and scattered them;
    he flashed forth lightnings, and routed them.
15 Then the channels of the sea were seen,
    and the foundations of the world were laid bare
at your rebuke, O Lord,
    at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.

16 He reached down from on high, he took me;
    he drew me out of mighty waters.
17 He delivered me from my strong enemy,
    and from those who hated me;
    for they were too mighty for me.
18 They confronted me in the day of my calamity;
    but the Lord was my support.
19 He brought me out into a broad place;
    he delivered me, because he delighted in me.

20 The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness;
    according to the cleanness of my hands he recompensed me.
21 For I have kept the ways of the Lord,
    and have not wickedly departed from my God.
22 For all his ordinances were before me,
    and his statutes I did not put away from me.
23 I was blameless before him,
    and I kept myself from guilt.
24 Therefore the Lord has recompensed me according to my righteousness,
    according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.

25 With the loyal you show yourself loyal;
    with the blameless you show yourself blameless;
26 with the pure you show yourself pure;
    and with the crooked you show yourself perverse.
27 For you deliver a humble people,
    but the haughty eyes you bring down.
28 It is you who light my lamp;
    the Lord, my God, lights up my darkness.
29 By you I can crush a troop,
    and by my God I can leap over a wall.
30 This God—his way is perfect;
    the promise of the Lord proves true;
    he is a shield for all who take refuge in him.

31 For who is God except the Lord?
    And who is a rock besides our God?—
32 the God who girded me with strength,
    and made my way safe.
33 He made my feet like the feet of a deer,
    and set me secure on the heights.
34 He trains my hands for war,
    so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
35 You have given me the shield of your salvation,
    and your right hand has supported me;
    your help[b] has made me great.
36 You gave me a wide place for my steps under me,
    and my feet did not slip.
37 I pursued my enemies and overtook them;
    and did not turn back until they were consumed.
38 I struck them down, so that they were not able to rise;
    they fell under my feet.
39 For you girded me with strength for the battle;
    you made my assailants sink under me.
40 You made my enemies turn their backs to me,
    and those who hated me I destroyed.
41 They cried for help, but there was no one to save them;
    they cried to the Lord, but he did not answer them.
42 I beat them fine, like dust before the wind;
    I cast them out like the mire of the streets.

43 You delivered me from strife with the peoples;[c]
    you made me head of the nations;
    people whom I had not known served me.
44 As soon as they heard of me they obeyed me;
    foreigners came cringing to me.
45 Foreigners lost heart,
    and came trembling out of their strongholds.

46 The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock,
    and exalted be the God of my salvation,
47 the God who gave me vengeance
    and subdued peoples under me;
48 who delivered me from my enemies;
    indeed, you exalted me above my adversaries;
    you delivered me from the violent.

49 For this I will extol you, O Lord, among the nations,
    and sing praises to your name.
50 Great triumphs he gives to his king,
    and shows steadfast love to his anointed,
    to David and his descendants forever.

Psalm 19

God’s Glory in Creation and the Law

To the leader. A Psalm of David.

The heavens are telling the glory of God;
    and the firmament[d] proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours forth speech,
    and night to night declares knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words;
    their voice is not heard;
yet their voice[e] goes out through all the earth,
    and their words to the end of the world.

In the heavens[f] he has set a tent for the sun,
which comes out like a bridegroom from his wedding canopy,
    and like a strong man runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
    and its circuit to the end of them;
    and nothing is hid from its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect,
    reviving the soul;
the decrees of the Lord are sure,
    making wise the simple;
the precepts of the Lord are right,
    rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is clear,
    enlightening the eyes;
the fear of the Lord is pure,
    enduring forever;
the ordinances of the Lord are true
    and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
    even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey,
    and drippings of the honeycomb.

11 Moreover by them is your servant warned;
    in keeping them there is great reward.
12 But who can detect their errors?
    Clear me from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from the insolent;[g]
    do not let them have dominion over me.
Then I shall be blameless,
    and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
    be acceptable to you,
    O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 18:13 Gk See 2 Sam 22.14: Heb adds hailstones and coals of fire
  2. Psalm 18:35 Or gentleness
  3. Psalm 18:43 Gk Tg: Heb people
  4. Psalm 19:1 Or dome
  5. Psalm 19:4 Gk Jerome Compare Syr: Heb line
  6. Psalm 19:4 Heb In them
  7. Psalm 19:13 Or from proud thoughts
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Acts 20:17-38New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Paul Speaks to the Ephesian Elders

17 From Miletus he sent a message to Ephesus, asking the elders of the church to meet him. 18 When they came to him, he said to them:

“You yourselves know how I lived among you the entire time from the first day that I set foot in Asia, 19 serving the Lord with all humility and with tears, enduring the trials that came to me through the plots of the Jews. 20 I did not shrink from doing anything helpful, proclaiming the message to you and teaching you publicly and from house to house, 21 as I testified to both Jews and Greeks about repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus. 22 And now, as a captive to the Spirit,[a] I am on my way to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit testifies to me in every city that imprisonment and persecutions are waiting for me. 24 But I do not count my life of any value to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the good news of God’s grace.

25 “And now I know that none of you, among whom I have gone about proclaiming the kingdom, will ever see my face again. 26 Therefore I declare to you this day that I am not responsible for the blood of any of you, 27 for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole purpose of God. 28 Keep watch over yourselves and over all the flock, of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God[b] that he obtained with the blood of his own Son.[c] 29 I know that after I have gone, savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Some even from your own group will come distorting the truth in order to entice the disciples to follow them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to warn everyone with tears. 32 And now I commend you to God and to the message of his grace, a message that is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all who are sanctified. 33 I coveted no one’s silver or gold or clothing. 34 You know for yourselves that I worked with my own hands to support myself and my companions. 35 In all this I have given you an example that by such work we must support the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, for he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

36 When he had finished speaking, he knelt down with them all and prayed. 37 There was much weeping among them all; they embraced Paul and kissed him, 38 grieving especially because of what he had said, that they would not see him again. Then they brought him to the ship.

Footnotes:

  1. Acts 20:22 Or And now, bound in the spirit
  2. Acts 20:28 Other ancient authorities read of the Lord
  3. Acts 20:28 Or with his own blood; Gk with the blood of his Own
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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