Read the Bible in a Year

Each day, we'll post passages so that you can read the Bible in one year. This is part of The Colossians 13:16 Project, sponsored by Cove Presbyterian Church, 3404 Main Street, Weirton, West Virginia. You're invited to worship with us Sundays, at 11:00 a.m. or Saturdays, at 6:30 p.m. You may also want to consider joining one our adult Bible Studies: Thursdays at 12:00 noon and Sundays at 9:30 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. We also have a full range of programs for children. If you want more information about the church, check out the other blogs. And please feel free to leave any comments.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Bible Readings for June 14, 2016

Today our passages are 1 Kings 12:20–13:34; Acts 9:26-43; Psalm 132:1-18; and Proverbs 17:6. The readings are from The Message by Eugene H. PetersonIf you find these readings helpful, please consider sending an offering directly to Cove Presbyterian Church, 3404 Main Street, Weirton, West Virginia or through PayPal.

1 Kings 12:20-13:34 (The Message)

Jeroboam of Israel
20 When the word was out that Jeroboam was back and available, the assembled people invited him and inaugurated him king over all Israel. The only tribe left to the Davidic dynasty was Judah.  21 When Rehoboam got back to Jerusalem, he called up the men of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin, a 180,000 of their best soldiers, to go to war against Israel and recover the kingdom for Rehoboam son of Solomon.
 22-24 At this time the word of God came to Shemaiah, a man of God: "Tell this to Rehoboam son of Solomon king of Judah, along with everyone in Judah and Benjamin and anyone else who is around: This is God's word: Don't march out; don't fight against your brothers the Israelites; go back home, every last one of you; I'm in charge here." And they did it; they did what God said and went home.

25 Jeroboam made a fort at Shechem in the hills of Ephraim, and made that his headquarters. He also built a fort at Penuel.

 26-27 But then Jeroboam thought, "It won't be long before the kingdom is reunited under David. As soon as these people resume worship at The Temple of God in Jerusalem, they'll start thinking of Rehoboam king of Judah as their ruler. They'll then kill me and go back to King Rehoboam."
 28-30 So the king came up with a plan: He made two golden calves. Then he announced, "It's too much trouble for you to go to Jerusalem to worship. Look at these—the gods who brought you out of Egypt!" He put one calf in Bethel; the other he placed in Dan. This was blatant sin. Think of it—people traveling all the way to Dan to worship a calf!
 31-33 And that wasn't the end of it. Jeroboam built forbidden shrines all over the place and recruited priests from wherever he could find them, regardless of whether they were fit for the job or not. To top it off, he created a holy New Year festival to be held on the fifteenth day of the eighth month to replace the one in Judah, complete with worship offered on the Altar at Bethel and sacrificing before the calves he had set up there. He staffed Bethel with priests from the local shrines he had made. This was strictly his own idea to compete with the feast in Judah; and he carried it off with flair, a festival exclusively for Israel, Jeroboam himself leading the worship at the Altar.

1 Kings 13

 1-3 And then this happened: Just as Jeroboam was at the Altar, about to make an offering, a holy man came from Judah by God's command and preached (these were God's orders) to the Altar: "Altar, Altar! God's message! 'A son will be born into David's family named Josiah. The priests from the shrines who are making offerings on you, he will sacrifice—on you! Human bones burned on you!'" At the same time he announced a sign: "This is the proof God gives—the Altar will split into pieces and the holy offerings spill into the dirt."  4-5 When the king heard the message the holy man preached against the Altar at Bethel, he reached out to grab him, yelling, "Arrest him!" But his arm was paralyzed and hung useless. At the same time the Altar broke apart and the holy offerings all spilled into the dirt—the very sign the holy man had announced by God's command.
 6 The king pleaded with the holy man, "Help me! Pray to your God for the healing of my arm." The holy man prayed for him and the king's arm was healed—as good as new!
 7 Then the king invited the holy man, "Join me for a meal; I have a gift for you."
 8-10 The holy man told the king, "Not on your life! You couldn't pay me enough to get me to sit down with you at a meal in this place. I'm here under God's orders, and he commanded, 'Don't eat a crumb, don't drink a drop, and don't go back the way you came.'" Then he left by a different road than the one on which he had walked to Bethel.
 11 There was an old prophet who lived in Bethel. His sons came and told him the story of what the holy man had done that day in Bethel, told him everything that had happened and what the holy man had said to the king.
 12 Their father said, "Which way did he go?" His sons pointed out the road that the holy man from Judah had taken.
 13-14 He told his sons, "Saddle my donkey." When they had saddled it, he got on and rode after the holy man. He found him sitting under an oak tree.
    He asked him, "Are you the holy man who came from Judah?"
    "Yes, I am," he said.
 15 "Well, come home with me and have a meal."
 16-17 "Sorry, I can't do that," the holy man said. "I can neither go back with you nor eat with you in this country. I'm under strict orders from God: 'Don't eat a crumb; don't drink a drop; and don't come back the way you came.'"
 18-19 But he said, "I am also a prophet, just like you. And an angel came to me with a message from God: 'Bring him home with you, and give him a good meal!'" But the man was lying. So the holy man went home with him and they had a meal together.
 20-22 There they were, sitting at the table together, when the word of God came to the prophet who had brought him back. He confronted the holy man who had come from Judah: "God's word to you: You disobeyed God's command; you didn't keep the strict orders your God gave you; you came back and sat down to a good meal in the very place God told you, 'Don't eat a crumb; don't drink a drop.' For that you're going to die far from home and not be buried in your ancestral tomb."
 23-25 When the meal was over, the prophet who had brought him back saddled his donkey for him. Down the road a way, a lion met him and killed him. His corpse lay crumpled on the road, the lion on one side and the donkey on the other. Some passersby saw the corpse in a heap on the road, with the lion standing guard beside it. They went to the village where the old prophet lived and told what they had seen.
 26 When the prophet who had gotten him off track heard it, he said, "It's the holy man who disobeyed God's strict orders. God turned him over to the lion who knocked him around and killed him, just as God had told him."
 27-30 The prophet told his sons, "Saddle my donkey." They did it. He rode out and found the corpse in a heap in the road, with the lion and the donkey standing there. The lion hadn't bothered either the corpse or the donkey. The old prophet loaded the corpse of the holy man on his donkey and returned it to his own town to give it a decent burial. He placed the body in his own tomb. The people mourned, saying, "A sad day, brother!"
 31-32 After the funeral, the prophet said to his sons, "When I die, bury me in the same tomb where the holy man is buried, my bones alongside his bones. The message that he preached by God's command against the Altar at Bethel and against all the sex-and-religion shrines in the towns of Samaria will come true."
 33-34 After this happened, Jeroboam kept right on doing evil, recruiting priests for the forbidden shrines indiscriminately—anyone who wanted to could be a priest at one of the local shrines. This was the root sin of Jeroboam's government. And it was this that ruined him.

Acts 9:26-43 (The Message)

 26-27Back in Jerusalem he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him. They didn't trust him one bit. Then Barnabas took him under his wing. He introduced him to the apostles and stood up for him, told them how Saul had seen and spoken to the Master on the Damascus Road and how in Damascus itself he had laid his life on the line with his bold preaching in Jesus' name.
 28-30After that he was accepted as one of them, going in and out of Jerusalem with no questions asked, uninhibited as he preached in the Master's name. But then he ran afoul of a group called Hellenists—he had been engaged in a running argument with them—who plotted his murder. When his friends learned of the plot, they got him out of town, took him to Caesarea, and then shipped him off to Tarsus.
 31Things calmed down after that and the church had smooth sailing for a while. All over the country—Judea, Samaria, Galilee—the church grew. They were permeated with a deep sense of reverence for God. The Holy Spirit was with them, strengthening them. They prospered wonderfully.
 32-35Peter went off on a mission to visit all the churches. In the course of his travels he arrived in Lydda and met with the believers there. He came across a man—his name was Aeneas—who had been in bed eight years paralyzed. Peter said, "Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you. Get up and make your bed!" And he did it—jumped right out of bed. Everybody who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him walking around and woke up to the fact that God was alive and active among them.  36-37Down the road a way in Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha, "Gazelle" in our language. She was well-known for doing good and helping out. During the time Peter was in the area she became sick and died. Her friends prepared her body for burial and put her in a cool room.
 38-40Some of the disciples had heard that Peter was visiting in nearby Lydda and sent two men to ask if he would be so kind as to come over. Peter got right up and went with them. They took him into the room where Tabitha's body was laid out. Her old friends, most of them widows, were in the room mourning. They showed Peter pieces of clothing the Gazelle had made while she was with them. Peter put the widows all out of the room. He knelt and prayed. Then he spoke directly to the body: "Tabitha, get up."
 40-41She opened her eyes. When she saw Peter, she sat up. He took her hand and helped her up. Then he called in the believers and widows, and presented her to them alive.
 42-43When this became known all over Joppa, many put their trust in the Master. Peter stayed on a long time in Joppa as a guest of Simon the Tanner.

Psalm 132:1-18 (The Message)

Psalm 132

A Pilgrim Song
 1-5 O God, remember David, remember all his troubles!
   And remember how he promised God,
      made a vow to the Strong God of Jacob,
   "I'm not going home,
      and I'm not going to bed,
   I'm not going to sleep,
      not even take time to rest,
   Until I find a home for God,
      a house for the Strong God of Jacob."

 6-7 Remember how we got the news in Ephrathah,
      learned all about it at Jaar Meadows?
   We shouted, "Let's go to the shrine dedication!
      Let's worship at God's own footstool!"

 8-10 Up, God, enjoy your new place of quiet repose,
      you and your mighty covenant ark;
   Get your priests all dressed up in justice;
      prompt your worshipers to sing this prayer:
   "Honor your servant David;
      don't disdain your anointed one."

 11-18 God gave David his word,
      he won't back out on this promise:
   "One of your sons
      I will set on your throne;
   If your sons stay true to my Covenant
      and learn to live the way I teach them,
   Their sons will continue the line—
      always a son to sit on your throne.
   Yes—I, God, chose Zion,
      the place I wanted for my shrine;
   This will always be my home;
      this is what I want, and I'm here for good.
   I'll shower blessings on the pilgrims who come here,
      and give supper to those who arrive hungry;
   I'll dress my priests in salvation clothes;
      the holy people will sing their hearts out!
   Oh, I'll make the place radiant for David!
      I'll fill it with light for my anointed!
   I'll dress his enemies in dirty rags,
      but I'll make his crown sparkle with splendor."


Proverbs 17:6 (The Message)

 6 Old people are distinguished by grandchildren;
   children take pride in their parents.

Verse of the Day
“But we are citizens of heaven and are eagerly waiting for our Savior to come from there. Our Lord Jesus Christ” - Philippians 3:20
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Khalil Gibran.jpg
Thought for the Day
Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer of the New York Pen League, Khalil Gibran wrote, “Life without liberty is like a body without spirit.”

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