Through The Bible Friday 08-31-18 Devotions
Songs of Praise for Salvation
12 In that day you will sing:
“I will praise you, O Lord!
You were angry with me, but not any more.
Now you comfort me.
2 See, God has come to save me.
I will trust in him and not be afraid.
The Lord God is my strength and my song;
he has given me victory.”
3 With joy you will drink deeply
from the fountain of salvation!
4 In that wonderful day you will sing:
“Thank the Lord! Praise his name!
Tell the nations what he has done.
Let them know how mighty he is!
5 Sing to the Lord, for he has done wonderful things.
Make known his praise around the world.
6 Let all the people of Jerusalem[a] shout his praise with joy!
For great is the Holy One of Israel who lives among you.”
A Message about Babylon
13 Isaiah son of Amoz received this message concerning the destruction of Babylon:
2 “Raise a signal flag on a bare hilltop.
Call up an army against Babylon.
Wave your hand to encourage them
as they march into the palaces of the high and mighty.
3 I, the Lord, have dedicated these soldiers for this task.
Yes, I have called mighty warriors to express my anger,
and they will rejoice when I am exalted.”
4 Hear the noise on the mountains!
Listen, as the vast armies march!
It is the noise and shouting of many nations.
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies has called this army together.
5 They come from distant countries,
from beyond the farthest horizons.
They are the Lord’s weapons to carry out his anger.
With them he will destroy the whole land.
6 Scream in terror, for the day of the Lord has arrived—
the time for the Almighty to destroy.
7 Every arm is paralyzed with fear.
Every heart melts,
8 and people are terrified.
Pangs of anguish grip them,
like those of a woman in labor.
They look helplessly at one another,
their faces aflame with fear.
9 For see, the day of the Lord is coming—
the terrible day of his fury and fierce anger.
The land will be made desolate,
and all the sinners destroyed with it.
10 The heavens will be black above them;
the stars will give no light.
The sun will be dark when it rises,
and the moon will provide no light.
11 “I, the Lord, will punish the world for its evil
and the wicked for their sin.
I will crush the arrogance of the proud
and humble the pride of the mighty.
12 I will make people scarcer than gold—
more rare than the fine gold of Ophir.
13 For I will shake the heavens.
The earth will move from its place
when the Lord of Heaven’s Armies displays his wrath
in the day of his fierce anger.”
14 Everyone in Babylon will run about like a hunted gazelle,
like sheep without a shepherd.
They will try to find their own people
and flee to their own land.
15 Anyone who is captured will be cut down—
run through with a sword.
16 Their little children will be dashed to death before their eyes.
Their homes will be sacked, and their wives will be raped.
17 “Look, I will stir up the Medes against Babylon.
They cannot be tempted by silver
or bribed with gold.
18 The attacking armies will shoot down the young men with arrows.
They will have no mercy on helpless babies
and will show no compassion for children.”
19 Babylon, the most glorious of kingdoms,
the flower of Chaldean pride,
will be devastated like Sodom and Gomorrah
when God destroyed them.
20 Babylon will never be inhabited again.
It will remain empty for generation after generation.
Nomads will refuse to camp there,
and shepherds will not bed down their sheep.
21 Desert animals will move into the ruined city,
and the houses will be haunted by howling creatures.
Owls will live among the ruins,
and wild goats will go there to dance.
22 Hyenas will howl in its fortresses,
and jackals will make dens in its luxurious palaces.
Babylon’s days are numbered;
its time of destruction will soon arrive.
A Taunt for Babylon’s King
14 But the Lord will have mercy on the descendants of Jacob. He will choose Israel as his special people once again. He will bring them back to settle once again in their own land. And people from many different nations will come and join them there and unite with the people of Israel.[b] 2 The nations of the world will help the people of Israel to return, and those who come to live in the Lord’s land will serve them. Those who captured Israel will themselves be captured, and Israel will rule over its enemies.
3 In that wonderful day when the Lord gives his people rest from sorrow and fear, from slavery and chains, 4 you will taunt the king of Babylon. You will say,
“The mighty man has been destroyed.
Yes, your insolence[c] is ended.
5 For the Lord has crushed your wicked power
and broken your evil rule.
6 You struck the people with endless blows of rage
and held the nations in your angry grip
with unrelenting tyranny.
7 But finally the earth is at rest and quiet.
Now it can sing again!
8 Even the trees of the forest—
the cypress trees and the cedars of Lebanon—
sing out this joyous song:
‘Since you have been cut down,
no one will come now to cut us down!’
9 “In the place of the dead[d] there is excitement
over your arrival.
The spirits of world leaders and mighty kings long dead
stand up to see you.
10 With one voice they all cry out,
‘Now you are as weak as we are!
11 Your might and power were buried with you.[e] The sound of the harp in your palace has ceased.
Now maggots are your sheet,
and worms your blanket.’
12 “How you are fallen from heaven,
O shining star, son of the morning!
You have been thrown down to the earth,
you who destroyed the nations of the world.
13 For you said to yourself,
‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars.
I will preside on the mountain of the gods
far away in the north.[f] 14 I will climb to the highest heavens
and be like the Most High.’
15 Instead, you will be brought down to the place of the dead,
down to its lowest depths.
16 Everyone there will stare at you and ask,
‘Can this be the one who shook the earth
and made the kingdoms of the world tremble?
17 Is this the one who destroyed the world
and made it into a wasteland?
Is this the king who demolished the world’s greatest cities
and had no mercy on his prisoners?’
18 “The kings of the nations lie in stately glory,
each in his own tomb,
19 but you will be thrown out of your grave
like a worthless branch.
Like a corpse trampled underfoot,
you will be dumped into a mass grave
with those killed in battle.
You will descend to the pit.
20 You will not be given a proper burial,
for you have destroyed your nation
and slaughtered your people.
The descendants of such an evil person
will never again receive honor.
21 Kill this man’s children!
Let them die because of their father’s sins!
They must not rise and conquer the earth,
filling the world with their cities.”
22 This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies says:
“I, myself, have risen against Babylon!
I will destroy its children and its children’s children,”
says the Lord.
23 “I will make Babylon a desolate place of owls,
filled with swamps and marshes.
I will sweep the land with the broom of destruction.
I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!”
A Message about Assyria
24 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies has sworn this oath:
“It will all happen as I have planned.
It will be as I have decided.
25 I will break the Assyrians when they are in Israel;
I will trample them on my mountains.
My people will no longer be their slaves
nor bow down under their heavy loads.
26 I have a plan for the whole earth,
a hand of judgment upon all the nations.
27 The Lord of Heaven’s Armies has spoken—
who can change his plans?
When his hand is raised,
who can stop him?”
A Message about Philistia
28 This message came to me the year King Ahaz died:[g]
29 Do not rejoice, you Philistines,
that the rod that struck you is broken—
that the king who attacked you is dead.
For from that snake a more poisonous snake will be born,
a fiery serpent to destroy you!
30 I will feed the poor in my pasture;
the needy will lie down in peace.
But as for you, I will wipe you out with famine
and destroy the few who remain.
31 Wail at the gates! Weep in the cities!
Melt with fear, you Philistines!
A powerful army comes like smoke from the north.
Each soldier rushes forward eager to fight.
32 What should we tell the Philistine messengers? Tell them,
“The Lord has built Jerusalem[h];
its walls will give refuge to his oppressed people.”
12:6 Hebrew Zion.
14:1 Hebrew the house of Jacob. The names “Jacob” and “Israel” are often interchanged throughout the Old Testament, referring sometimes to the individual patriarch and sometimes to the nation.
14:4 As in Dead Sea Scrolls; the meaning of the Masoretic Text is uncertain.
14:9 Hebrew Sheol; also in 14:15.
14:11 Hebrew were brought down to Sheol.
14:13 Or on the heights of Zaphon.
14:28 King Ahaz died in 715 B.c.
14:32 Hebrew Zion.
1 Praise the Lord!
Sing to the Lord a new song.
Sing his praises in the assembly of the faithful.
2 O Israel, rejoice in your Maker.
O people of Jerusalem,[a] exult in your King.
3 Praise his name with dancing,
accompanied by tambourine and harp.
4 For the Lord delights in his people;
he crowns the humble with victory.
5 Let the faithful rejoice that he honors them.
Let them sing for joy as they lie on their beds.
6 Let the praises of God be in their mouths,
and a sharp sword in their hands—
7 to execute vengeance on the nations
and punishment on the peoples,
8 to bind their kings with shackles
and their leaders with iron chains,
9 to execute the judgment written against them.
This is the glorious privilege of his faithful ones.
Praise the Lord!
149:2 Hebrew Zion.
Greetings from Paul
1 This letter is from Paul and Timothy, slaves of Christ Jesus.
I am writing to all of God’s holy people in Philippi who belong to Christ Jesus, including the church leaders[a] and deacons.
2 May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.
Paul’s Thanksgiving and Prayer
3 Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. 4 Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, 5 for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. 6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.
7 So it is right that I should feel as I do about all of you, for you have a special place in my heart. You share with me the special favor of God, both in my imprisonment and in defending and confirming the truth of the Good News. 8 God knows how much I love you and long for you with the tender compassion of Christ Jesus.
9 I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. 10 For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. 11 May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ[b]—for this will bring much glory and praise to God.
Paul’s Joy That Christ Is Preached
12 And I want you to know, my dear brothers and sisters,[c] that everything that has happened to me here has helped to spread the Good News. 13 For everyone here, including the whole palace guard,[d] knows that I am in chains because of Christ. 14 And because of my imprisonment, most of the believers[e] here have gained confidence and boldly speak God’s message[f] without fear.
15 It’s true that some are preaching out of jealousy and rivalry. But others preach about Christ with pure motives. 16 They preach because they love me, for they know I have been appointed to defend the Good News. 17 Those others do not have pure motives as they preach about Christ. They preach with selfish ambition, not sincerely, intending to make my chains more painful to me. 18 But that doesn’t matter. Whether their motives are false or genuine, the message about Christ is being preached either way, so I rejoice. And I will continue to rejoice. 19 For I know that as you pray for me and the Spirit of Jesus Christ helps me, this will lead to my deliverance.
Paul’s Life for Christ
20 For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. 21 For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better. 22 But if I live, I can do more fruitful work for Christ. So I really don’t know which is better. 23 I’m torn between two desires: I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me. 24 But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live.
25 Knowing this, I am convinced that I will remain alive so I can continue to help all of you grow and experience the joy of your faith. 26 And when I come to you again, you will have even more reason to take pride in Christ Jesus because of what he is doing through me.
Live as Citizens of Heaven
27 Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News. 28 Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself. 29 For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him. 30 We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it.
1:1 Or overseers, or bishops.
1:11 Greek with the fruit of righteousness through Jesus Christ.
1:12 Greek brothers.
1:13 Greek including all the Praetorium.
1:14a Greek brothers in the Lord.
1:14b Some manuscripts read speak the message.
A song. A psalm of Asaph.
1 O God, do not be silent!
Do not be deaf.
Do not be quiet, O God.
2 Don’t you hear the uproar of your enemies?
Don’t you see that your arrogant enemies are rising up?
3 They devise crafty schemes against your people;
they conspire against your precious ones.
4 “Come,” they say, “let us wipe out Israel as a nation.
We will destroy the very memory of its existence.”
5 Yes, this was their unanimous decision.
They signed a treaty as allies against you—
6 these Edomites and Ishmaelites;
Moabites and Hagrites;
7 Gebalites, Ammonites, and Amalekites;
and people from Philistia and Tyre.
8 Assyria has joined them, too,
and is allied with the descendants of Lot. Interlude
9 Do to them as you did to the Midianites
and as you did to Sisera and Jabin at the Kishon River.
10 They were destroyed at Endor,
and their decaying corpses fertilized the soil.
11 Let their mighty nobles die as Oreb and Zeeb did.
Let all their princes die like Zebah and Zalmunna,
12 for they said, “Let us seize for our own use
these pasturelands of God!”
13 O my God, scatter them like tumbleweed,
like chaff before the wind!
14 As a fire burns a forest
and as a flame sets mountains ablaze,
15 chase them with your fierce storm;
terrify them with your tempest.
16 Utterly disgrace them
until they submit to your name, O Lord.
17 Let them be ashamed and terrified forever.
Let them die in disgrace.
18 Then they will learn that you alone are called the Lord,
that you alone are the Most High,
supreme over all the earth.
Monday, September 03, 2018