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Ezekiel 45:13-46:24; 1 Peter 1:13-2:10; Psalms 119:33-48; Proverbs 28:11 (Good News Translation)

Ezekiel 45:13-46:24

13-15 “This is the basis on which you are to make your offerings:

Wheat: 1/60th of your harvest
Barley: 1/60th of your harvest
Olive oil: 1/100th of the yield of your trees
(Measure it by the bath 10 baths = 1 homer = 1 kor)
Sheep: 1 sheep out of every 200 from the meadows of Israel

“You are to bring grain offerings, animals to be burned whole, and animals for fellowship offerings, so that your sins will be forgiven. I, the Sovereign Lord, command it.

16 “All the people of the land must take[a] these offerings to the ruling prince of Israel. 17 It will be his duty to provide the animals to be burned whole, the grain offerings, and the wine offerings for the whole nation of Israel at the New Moon Festivals, the Sabbaths, and the other festivals. He is to provide the sin offerings, the grain offerings, the offerings to be burned whole, and the fellowship offerings, to take away the sins of the people of Israel.”

The Festivals

18 The Sovereign Lord said, “On the first day of the first month you are to sacrifice a bull without any defects and purify the Temple. 19 The priest will take some of the blood of this sin offering and put it on the doorposts of the Temple, on the four corners of the altar, and on the posts of the gateways to the inner courtyard. 20 On the seventh day of the month you are to do the same thing on behalf of anyone who sins unintentionally or through ignorance. In this way you will keep the Temple holy.

21 “On the fourteenth day of the first month you will begin the celebration of the Passover Festival. For seven days everyone will eat bread made without yeast. 22 On the first day of the festival the ruling prince must offer a bull as a sacrifice for his sins and for those of all the people. 23 On each of the seven days of the festival he is to sacrifice to the Lord seven bulls and seven rams without any defects and burn them whole. He is also to sacrifice a male goat each day as a sin offering. 24 For each bull and each ram that is sacrificed, there is to be an offering of half a bushel of grain and three quarts of olive oil.

25 “For the Festival of Shelters, which begins on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, the prince will offer on each of the seven days the same sacrifice for sin, the same offerings to be burned whole, and the same offerings of grain and olive oil.”

The Prince and the Festivals

46 The Sovereign Lord says, “The east gateway to the inner courtyard must be kept closed during the six working days, but it is to be opened on the Sabbath and at the New Moon Festival. The ruling prince will go from the outer courtyard into the entrance room of the gateway and stand beside the posts of the gate while the priests burn his sacrifices whole and offer his fellowship offerings. There at the gate he must worship and then go back out. The gate must not be shut until evening. Each Sabbath and each New Moon Festival all the people are also to bow down and worship the Lord in front of the gate. On the Sabbath the prince is to bring to the Lord, as sacrifices to be burned whole, six lambs and one ram, all without any defects. With each ram he is to bring an offering of half a bushel of grain, and with each lamb he is to bring whatever he wants to give. For each half-bushel of grain offering he is to bring three quarts of olive oil. At the New Moon Festival he will offer a young bull, six lambs, and a ram, all without any defects. With each bull and each ram the offering is to be half a bushel of grain, and with each lamb the offering is to be whatever the prince wants to give. Three quarts of olive oil are to be offered with each half-bushel of grain. The prince must leave the entrance room of the gateway and go out by the same way he went in.

“When the people come to worship the Lord at any festival, those who enter by the north gate are to leave by the south gate after they have worshiped, and those who enter by the south gate are to leave by the north gate. No one may go out by the same way he entered, but must leave by the opposite gate. 10 The prince is to come in when the people come, and leave when they leave. 11 On the feast days and at the festivals the grain offering will be half a bushel with each bull or ram, and whatever the worshiper wants to give with each lamb. Three quarts of olive oil are to be offered with each half-bushel of grain.

12 “When the ruling prince wants to make a voluntary offering to the Lord, either an offering to be burned whole or a fellowship offering, the east gate to the inner courtyard will be opened for him. He is to make the offering in the same way he does on the Sabbath, and the gate is to be closed after he goes back out.”

The Daily Offering

13 The Lord says, “Every morning a one-year-old lamb without any defects is to be burned whole as an offering to the Lord. This offering must be made every day. 14 Also an offering of five pounds of flour is to be made every morning, along with one quart of olive oil for mixing with the flour. The rules for this offering to the Lord are to be in force forever. 15 The lamb, the flour, and the olive oil are to be offered to the Lord every morning forever.”

The Prince and the Land

16 The Sovereign Lord commands: “If the ruling prince gives any of the land he owns to one of his sons as a present, it will belong to that son as a part of his family property. 17 But if the ruling prince gives any of his land to anyone who is in his service, it will become the prince's property again when the Year of Restoration[b] comes. It belongs to him, and only he and his sons can own it permanently. 18 The ruling prince must not take any of the people's property away from them. Any land he gives to his sons must be from the land that is assigned to him, so that he will not oppress any of my people by taking their land.”

The Temple Kitchens

19 Then the man took me to the entrance of the rooms facing north near the gate on the south side of the inner courtyard. These are holy rooms for the priests. He pointed out a place on the west side of the rooms 20 and said, “This is the place where the priests are to boil the meat offered as sacrifices for sin or as repayment offerings, and to bake the offerings of flour, so that nothing holy is carried to the outer courtyard, where it might harm the people.”[c]

21-22 Then he led me to the outer courtyard and showed me that in each of its four corners there was a smaller[d] courtyard, 68 feet long and 48 feet wide. 23 Each one had a stone wall around it, with fireplaces built against the wall. 24 The man told me, “These are the kitchens where the Temple servants are to boil the sacrifices the people offer.”

Footnotes:

  1. Ezekiel 45:16 Probable text must take; Hebrew unclear.
  2. Ezekiel 46:17 Every fifty years, all Israelites were required to give freedom to any Israelites who had become slaves because of debts; they were also to give back to the original owner, or his heirs, any ancestral land that had been sold for debt (see Lv 25.8-55).
  3. Ezekiel 46:20 See 44.19.
  4. Ezekiel 46:21 One ancient translation smaller; Hebrew enclosed.
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1 Peter 1:13-2:10

A Call to Holy Living

13 So then, have your minds ready for action. Keep alert and set your hope completely on the blessing which will be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14 Be obedient to God, and do not allow your lives to be shaped by those desires you had when you were still ignorant. 15 Instead, be holy in all that you do, just as God who called you is holy. 16 The scripture says, “Be holy because I am holy.”

17 You call him Father, when you pray to God, who judges all people by the same standard, according to what each one has done; so then, spend the rest of your lives here on earth in reverence for him. 18 For you know what was paid to set you free from the worthless manner of life handed down by your ancestors. It was not something that can be destroyed, such as silver or gold; 19 it was the costly sacrifice of Christ, who was like a lamb without defect or flaw. 20 He had been chosen by God before the creation of the world and was revealed in these last days for your sake. 21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from death and gave him glory; and so your faith and hope are fixed on God.

22 Now that by your obedience to the truth you have purified yourselves and have come to have a sincere love for other believers, love one another earnestly with all your heart.[a] 23 For through the living and eternal word of God you have been born again as the children of a parent who is immortal, not mortal. 24 As the scripture says,

“All human beings are like grass,
    and all their glory is like wild flowers.
The grass withers, and the flowers fall,
25     but the word of the Lord remains forever.”

This word is the Good News that was proclaimed to you.

The Living Stone and the Holy Nation

Rid yourselves, then, of all evil; no more lying or hypocrisy or jealousy or insulting language. Be like newborn babies, always thirsty for the pure spiritual milk, so that by drinking it you may grow up and be saved. As the scripture says, “You have found out for yourselves how kind the Lord is.”

Come to the Lord, the living stone rejected by people as worthless but chosen by God as valuable. Come as living stones, and let yourselves be used in building the spiritual temple, where you will serve as holy priests to offer spiritual and acceptable sacrifices to God through Jesus Christ. For the scripture says,

“I chose a valuable stone,
    which I am placing as the cornerstone in Zion;
    and whoever believes in him will never be disappointed.”
This stone is of great value for you that believe; but for those who do not believe:
“The stone which the builders rejected as worthless
    turned out to be the most important of all.”
And another scripture says,
“This is the stone that will make people stumble,
    the rock that will make them fall.”

They stumbled because they did not believe in the word; such was God's will for them.

But you are the chosen race, the King's priests, the holy nation, God's own people, chosen to proclaim the wonderful acts of God, who called you out of darkness into his own marvelous light. 10 At one time you were not God's people, but now you are his people; at one time you did not know God's mercy, but now you have received his mercy.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Peter 1:22 with all your heart; some manuscripts have with a pure heart.
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Psalm 119:33-48

A Prayer for Understanding

33 Teach me, Lord, the meaning of your laws,
    and I will obey them at all times.
34 Explain your law to me, and I will obey it;
    I will keep it with all my heart.
35 Keep me obedient to your commandments,
    because in them I find happiness.
36 Give me the desire to obey your laws
    rather than to get rich.
37 Keep me from paying attention to what is worthless;
    be good to me, as you have promised.
38 Keep your promise to me, your servant—
    the promise you make to those who obey you.
39 Save me from the insults I fear;
    how wonderful are your judgments!
40 I want to obey your commands;
    give me new life, for you are righteous.

Trusting the Law of the Lord

41 Show me how much you love me, Lord,
    and save me according to your promise.
42 Then I can answer those who insult me
    because I trust in your word.
43 Enable me to speak the truth at all times,
    because my hope is in your judgments.
44 I will always obey your law,
    forever and ever.
45 I will live in perfect freedom,
    because I try to obey your teachings.
46 I will announce your commands to kings
    and I will not be ashamed.
47 I find pleasure in obeying your commands,
    because I love them.
48 I respect and love your commandments;
    I will meditate on your instructions.

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Proverbs 28:11

11 Rich people always think they are wise, but a poor person who has insight into character knows better.

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