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Psalm 88

A Petition to Be Saved from Death.

A Song. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. To the Chief Musician; set to chant mournfully. A didactic or reflective poem of Heman the Ezrahite.

88 O Lord, the God of my salvation,
I have cried out [for help] by day and in the night before You.

Let my prayer come before You and enter into Your presence;
Incline Your ear to my cry!

For my soul is full of troubles,
And my life draws near the grave (Sheol, the place of the dead).

I am counted among those who go down to the pit (grave);
I am like a man who has no strength [a mere shadow],

[a]Cast away [from the living] and abandoned among the dead,
Like the slain who lie in a [nameless] grave,
Whom You no longer remember,
And they are cut off from Your hand.

You have laid me in the lowest pit,
In dark places, in the depths.

Your wrath has rested heavily upon me,
And You have afflicted me with all Your waves. Selah.

You have put my friends far from me;
You have made me an [b]object of loathing to them.
I am shut up and I cannot go out.

My eye grows dim with sorrow.
O Lord, I have called on You every day;
I have spread out my hands to You [in prayer].

10 
Will You perform wonders for the dead?
Shall the departed spirits arise and praise You? Selah.
11 
Will Your lovingkindness be declared in the grave
Or Your faithfulness in Abaddon (the underworld)?
12 
Will Your wonders be known in the darkness?
And Your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness [where the dead forget and are forgotten]?

13 
But I have cried out to You, O Lord, for help;
And in the morning my prayer will come to You.
14 
O Lord, why do You reject me?
Why do You hide Your face from me?
15 
I was afflicted and close to death from my youth on;
I suffer Your terrors; I am overcome.
16 
Your fierce wrath has swept over me;
Your terrors have destroyed me.
17 
They have surrounded me like flood waters all day long;
They have completely encompassed me.
18 
Lover and friend You have placed far from me;
My familiar friends are in darkness.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 88:5 Lit Set free. The ancient rabbis understood this to mean that once a man is dead, he is free from all religious duties.
  2. Psalm 88:8 Lit abomination to them.
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Psalm 91-92

Security of the One Who Trusts in the Lord.

91 He who [a]dwells in the shelter of the Most High
Will remain secure and rest in the shadow of the Almighty [whose power no enemy can withstand].

I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
My God, in whom I trust [with great confidence, and on whom I rely]!”

For He will save you from the trap of the fowler,
And from the deadly pestilence.

He will cover you and completely protect you with His pinions,
And under His wings you will find refuge;
His faithfulness is a shield and a wall.


You will not be afraid of the terror of night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,

Nor of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction (sudden death) that lays waste at noon.

A thousand may fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
But danger will not come near you.

You will only [be a spectator as you] look on with your eyes
And witness the [divine] repayment of the wicked [as you watch safely from the shelter of the Most High].

Because you have made the Lord, [who is] my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 
No evil will befall you,
Nor will any plague come near your tent.

11 
For He will command His angels in regard to you,
To protect and defend and guard you in all your ways [of obedience and service].
12 
They will lift you up in their hands,
So that you do not [even] strike your foot against a stone.
13 
You will tread upon the lion and cobra;
The young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot.

14 
“Because he set his love on Me, therefore I will save him;
I will set him [securely] on high, because he knows My name [he confidently trusts and relies on Me, knowing I will never abandon him, no, never].
15 
“He will call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him.
16 
“With a long life I will satisfy him
And I will let him see My salvation.”

Praise for the Lord’s Goodness.

A Psalm. A Song for the Sabbath day.

92 It is a good and delightful thing to give thanks to the Lord,
To sing praises to Your name, O Most High,

To declare Your lovingkindness in the morning
And Your faithfulness by night,

With an instrument of ten strings and with the harp,
With a solemn sound on the lyre.

For You, O Lord, have made me glad by Your works;
At the works of Your hands I joyfully sing.


How great are Your works, O Lord!
Your thoughts are very deep [beyond man’s understanding].

A senseless man [in his crude and uncultivated state] knows nothing,
Nor does a [self-righteous] fool understand this:

That though the wicked sprout up like grass
And all evildoers flourish,
They will be destroyed forever.

But You, Lord, are on high forever.

For behold, Your enemies, O Lord,
For behold, Your enemies will perish;
All who do evil will be scattered.

10 
But my horn [my emblem of strength and power] You have exalted like that of a wild ox;
I am anointed with fresh oil [for Your service].
11 
My eye has looked on my foes;
My ears hear of the evildoers who rise up against me.
12 
The righteous will flourish like the date palm [long-lived, upright and useful];
They will grow like a cedar in Lebanon [majestic and stable].
13 
Planted in the house of the Lord,
They will flourish in the courts of our God.
14 
[Growing in grace] they will still thrive and bear fruit and prosper in old age;
They will flourish and be [b]vital and fresh [rich in trust and love and contentment];
15 
[They are living memorials] to declare that the Lord is upright and faithful [to His promises];
He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 91:1 The wonderful promises of this chapter are dependent upon one’s meeting the conditions stated in these first two verses (see Ex 15:26).
  2. Psalm 92:14 Lit fat and very green.
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2 Kings 9:17-37

17 Now the watchman was standing on the tower in Jezreel and he saw the crowd with Jehu as he approached, and said, “I see a company.” And [a]Joram said, “Send a horseman to meet them and have him ask, ‘[b]Do you come in peace?’” 18 So the horseman went to meet him and said, “Thus says the king: ‘Do you come in peace?’” And Jehu said, “What have you to do with peace? Rein in behind me.” And the watchman reported, “The messenger approached them, but he has not returned.” 19 Then Joram sent out a second horseman, who approached them and said, “Thus says the king: ‘Do you come in peace?’” Jehu replied, “What have you to do with peace? Rein in behind me.” 20 And the watchman reported, “He approached them, but he has not returned; and the driving [of the chariot] is like that of Jehu the son of Nimshi, for he drives furiously.”

21 Then [c]Joram said, “Harness [the chariot].” When they harnessed his chariot horses, Joram king of Israel and Ahaziah king of Judah went out, each in his chariot, and they went out to meet Jehu and met him on the property of Naboth the Jezreelite. 22 When Joram saw Jehu, he said, “Do you come in peace, Jehu?” And he answered, “What peace [can exist] as long as the fornications of your mother Jezebel and her sorceries are so many?” 23 So Joram reined [his chariot] around and fled, and he said to Ahaziah, “Treachery and betrayal, Ahaziah!” 24 But Jehu drew his bow with his full strength and shot Joram between his shoulders; and the arrow went out through his heart and he sank down in his chariot. 25 Then Jehu said to Bidkar his officer, “Pick him up and throw him on the property of the field of Naboth the Jezreelite; for I remember when you and I were riding together after his father Ahab, that the Lord uttered this prophecy against him: 26 ‘I certainly saw the blood of Naboth and the blood of his sons yesterday,’ says the Lord, ‘and I will repay you on this property,’ says the Lord. Now then, pick him up and throw him into the property [of Naboth], in accordance with the word of the Lord.”

Jehu Assassinates Ahaziah

27 When Ahaziah the king of Judah saw this, he fled by the way of the garden house. Jehu pursued him and said, “Shoot him too, [while he is] in the chariot.” So they shot him at the ascent to Gur, which is by Ibleam. And Ahaziah fled to Megiddo and died there. 28 Then his servants carried him in a chariot to Jerusalem and buried him in his grave with his fathers in the City of David.

29 In the eleventh year of Joram, the son of Ahab, Ahaziah became king over Judah.

30 So when Jehu came to Jezreel, Jezebel heard about it, and she painted her eyes and adorned her head and looked down from the [upper] window. 31 As Jehu entered in at the gate, she said, “Is it well, [d]Zimri, your master’s murderer?” 32 Then Jehu raised his face toward the window and said, “Who is on my side? Who?” And two or three officials looked down at him.

Jezebel Is Killed

33 And he said, “Throw her down.” So they threw her down, and some of her blood spattered on the wall and on the horses, and he trampled her underfoot. 34 When he came in, he ate and drank, and said, “See now to this cursed woman and bury her, for she is a king’s daughter.” 35 They went to bury her, but they found nothing left of her except the skull and the feet and the palms of her hands. 36 So they returned and told Jehu. Then he said, “This is the word of the Lord, which He spoke through His servant Elijah the Tishbite, saying, ‘In the property of Jezreel the dogs shall eat the flesh of Jezebel. 37 The corpse of Jezebel will be like dung on the surface of the field in the property of Jezreel, so they cannot say, “This is Jezebel.”’”

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Kings 9:17 Heb Jehoram.
  2. 2 Kings 9:17 Lit Peace? and so throughout the passage.
  3. 2 Kings 9:21 Heb Jehoram and through v 24.
  4. 2 Kings 9:31 A sarcastic reference to Zimri who gained his throne by assassination, but ruled only seven days.
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1 Corinthians 7:1-9

Teaching on Marriage

Now as to the matters of which you wrote: It is good (beneficial, advantageous) for a man not to touch a woman [outside marriage]. But because of [the temptation to participate in] sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband. The husband must fulfill his [marital] duty to his wife [with good will and kindness], and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have [exclusive] authority over her own body, but the husband shares with her; and likewise the husband does not have [exclusive] authority over his body, but the wife shares with him. Do not deprive each other [of marital rights], except perhaps by mutual consent for a time, so that you may devote yourselves [unhindered] to prayer, but come together again so that Satan will not tempt you [to sin] because of your lack of self-control. But I am saying this as a concession, not as a command. I wish that all the people were as I am; but each person has his own gift from God, one of this kind and one of that.

But I say to the unmarried and to the widows, [that as a practical matter] it is good if they remain [single and entirely devoted to the Lord] [a]as I am. But if they do not have [sufficient] self-control, they should marry; for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 7:8 Some scholars believe Paul may have been a widower.
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Matthew 6:7-15

“And when you pray, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. So do not be like them [praying as they do]; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

“Pray, then, [a]in this way:

‘Our Father, who is in heaven,
[b]Hallowed be Your name.
10 
[c]Your kingdom come,
Your [d]will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 
‘Give us this day our [e]daily bread.
12 
‘And forgive us our [f]debts, as we have forgiven our debtors [letting go of both the wrong and the resentment].
13 
‘And do not [g]lead us into temptation, but deliver us from [h]evil. [i][For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.]’

14 For if you forgive [j]others their trespasses [their reckless and willful sins], your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others [nurturing your hurt and anger with the result that it interferes with your relationship with God], then your Father will not forgive your trespasses.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 6:9 I.e. as a model or pattern.
  2. Matthew 6:9 I.e. set apart, keep and treat as holy, revere.
  3. Matthew 6:10 A plea for God’s kingdom to be inaugurated on earth.
  4. Matthew 6:10 Including what God wishes to be done by the individual believer—His commands and precepts.
  5. Matthew 6:11 I.e. life’s essentials.
  6. Matthew 6:12 I.e. sins, moral failures.
  7. Matthew 6:13 I.e. lead us away from situations where we are vulnerable and have the opportunity to sin. God does not tempt man (see James 1:13) but does allow man to be tested.
  8. Matthew 6:13 Or the evil one.
  9. Matthew 6:13 This clause is not found in early mss.
  10. Matthew 6:14 Gr anthropoi.
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