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, November 29, 2016

Bible Readings for November 29, 2016

Today our passages are Daniel 6:1-28; 2 Peter 3:1-18; Psalm 119:129-152; and Proverbs 28:21-22. The readings are from The Message by Eugene H. Peterson. If you missed a day, you can find all the readings at our blog, The Bible in a Year. If you find these readings helpful, please consider sending an offering directly to Cove Presbyterian Church, 3404 Main Street, Weirton, West Virginia or through PayPal by using the link below.

Daniel 6:1-28 (The Message)

Daniel 6

Daniel in the Lions' Den
 1-3 Darius reorganized his kingdom. He appointed one hundred twenty governors to administer all the parts of his realm. Over them were three vice-regents, one of whom was Daniel. The governors reported to the vice-regents, who made sure that everything was in order for the king. But Daniel, brimming with spirit and intelligence, so completely outclassed the other vice-regents and governors that the king decided to put him in charge of the whole kingdom.  4-5 The vice-regents and governors got together to find some old scandal or skeleton in Daniel's life that they could use against him, but they couldn't dig up anything. He was totally exemplary and trustworthy. They could find no evidence of negligence or misconduct. So they finally gave up and said, "We're never going to find anything against this Daniel unless we can cook up something religious."
 6-7 The vice-regents and governors conspired together and then went to the king and said, "King Darius, live forever! We've convened your vice-regents, governors, and all your leading officials, and have agreed that the king should issue the following decree:
    For the next thirty days no one is to pray to any god or mortal except you, O king. Anyone who disobeys will be thrown into the lions' den.
 8 "Issue this decree, O king, and make it unconditional, as if written in stone like all the laws of the Medes and the Persians."
 9 King Darius signed the decree.
 10 When Daniel learned that the decree had been signed and posted, he continued to pray just as he had always done. His house had windows in the upstairs that opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he knelt there in prayer, thanking and praising his God.
 11-12 The conspirators came and found him praying, asking God for help. They went straight to the king and reminded him of the royal decree that he had signed. "Did you not," they said, "sign a decree forbidding anyone to pray to any god or man except you for the next thirty days? And anyone caught doing it would be thrown into the lions' den?"
    "Absolutely," said the king. "Written in stone, like all the laws of the Medes and Persians."
 13 Then they said, "Daniel, one of the Jewish exiles, ignores you, O king, and defies your decree. Three times a day he prays."
 14 At this, the king was very upset and tried his best to get Daniel out of the fix he'd put him in. He worked at it the whole day long.
 15 But then the conspirators were back: "Remember, O king, it's the law of the Medes and Persians that the king's decree can never be changed."
 16 The king caved in and ordered Daniel brought and thrown into the lions' den. But he said to Daniel, "Your God, to whom you are so loyal, is going to get you out of this."
 17 A stone slab was placed over the opening of the den. The king sealed the cover with his signet ring and the signet rings of all his nobles, fixing Daniel's fate.
 18 The king then went back to his palace. He refused supper. He couldn't sleep. He spent the night fasting.
 19-20 At daybreak the king got up and hurried to the lions' den. As he approached the den, he called out anxiously, "Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve so loyally, saved you from the lions?"
 21-22 "O king, live forever!" said Daniel. "My God sent his angel, who closed the mouths of the lions so that they would not hurt me. I've been found innocent before God and also before you, O king. I've done nothing to harm you."
 23 When the king heard these words, he was happy. He ordered Daniel taken up out of the den. When he was hauled up, there wasn't a scratch on him. He had trusted his God.
 24 Then the king commanded that the conspirators who had informed on Daniel be thrown into the lions' den, along with their wives and children. Before they hit the floor, the lions had them in their jaws, tearing them to pieces.
 25-27 King Darius published this proclamation to every race, color, and creed on earth:

    Peace to you! Abundant peace!
         I decree that Daniel's God shall be worshiped and feared
   in all parts of my kingdom.
         He is the living God, world without end. His kingdom
   never falls.
         His rule continues eternally.
         He is a savior and rescuer.
         He performs astonishing miracles in heaven and on earth.
         He saved Daniel from the power of the lions.

 28 From then on, Daniel was treated well during the reign of Darius, and also in the following reign of Cyrus the Persian.

2 Peter 3:1-18 (The Message)

2 Peter 3

In the Last Days
 1-2 My dear friends, this is now the second time I've written to you, both letters reminders to hold your minds in a state of undistracted attention. Keep in mind what the holy prophets said, and the command of our Master and Savior that was passed on by your apostles.  3-4First off, you need to know that in the last days, mockers are going to have a heyday. Reducing everything to the level of their puny feelings, they'll mock, "So what's happened to the promise of his Coming? Our ancestors are dead and buried, and everything's going on just as it has from the first day of creation. Nothing's changed."
 5-7They conveniently forget that long ago all the galaxies and this very planet were brought into existence out of watery chaos by God's word. Then God's word brought the chaos back in a flood that destroyed the world. The current galaxies and earth are fuel for the final fire. God is poised, ready to speak his word again, ready to give the signal for the judgment and destruction of the desecrating skeptics.
The Day the Sky Will Collapse
 8-9Don't overlook the obvious here, friends. With God, one day is as good as a thousand years, a thousand years as a day. God isn't late with his promise as some measure lateness. He is restraining himself on account of you, holding back the End because he doesn't want anyone lost. He's giving everyone space and time to change.  10But when the Day of God's Judgment does come, it will be unannounced, like a thief. The sky will collapse with a thunderous bang, everything disintegrating in a huge conflagration, earth and all its works exposed to the scrutiny of Judgment.
 11-13Since everything here today might well be gone tomorrow, do you see how essential it is to live a holy life? Daily expect the Day of God, eager for its arrival. The galaxies will burn up and the elements melt down that day—but we'll hardly notice. We'll be looking the other way, ready for the promised new heavens and the promised new earth, all landscaped with righteousness.
 14-16So, my dear friends, since this is what you have to look forward to, do your very best to be found living at your best, in purity and peace. Interpret our Master's patient restraint for what it is: salvation. Our good brother Paul, who was given much wisdom in these matters, refers to this in all his letters, and has written you essentially the same thing. Some things Paul writes are difficult to understand. Irresponsible people who don't know what they are talking about twist them every which way. They do it to the rest of the Scriptures, too, destroying themselves as they do it.
 17-18But you, friends, are well-warned. Be on guard lest you lose your footing and get swept off your feet by these lawless and loose-talking teachers. Grow in grace and understanding of our Master and Savior, Jesus Christ.
   Glory to the Master, now and forever! Yes!

Psalm 119:129-152 (The Message)

 129-136 Every word you give me is a miracle word—
      how could I help but obey?
   Break open your words, let the light shine out,
      let ordinary people see the meaning.
   Mouth open and panting,
      I wanted your commands more than anything.
   Turn my way, look kindly on me,
      as you always do to those who personally love you.
   Steady my steps with your Word of promise
      so nothing malign gets the better of me.
   Rescue me from the grip of bad men and women
      so I can live life your way.
   Smile on me, your servant;
      teach me the right way to live.
   I cry rivers of tears
      because nobody's living by your book!

 137-144 You are right and you do right, God;
      your decisions are right on target.
   You rightly instruct us in how to live
      ever faithful to you.
   My rivals nearly did me in,
      they persistently ignored your commandments.
   Your promise has been tested through and through,
      and I, your servant, love it dearly.
   I'm too young to be important,
      but I don't forget what you tell me.
   Your righteousness is eternally right,
      your revelation is the only truth.
   Even though troubles came down on me hard,
      your commands always gave me delight.
   The way you tell me to live is always right;
      help me understand it so I can live to the fullest.

 145-152 I call out at the top of my lungs,
      "God! Answer! I'll do whatever you say."
   I called to you, "Save me
      so I can carry out all your instructions."
   I was up before sunrise,
      crying for help, hoping for a word from you.
   I stayed awake all night,
      prayerfully pondering your promise.
   In your love, listen to me;
      in your justice, God, keep me alive.
   As those out to get me come closer and closer,
      they go farther and farther from the truth you reveal;
   But you're the closest of all to me, God,
      and all your judgments true.
   I've known all along from the evidence of your words
      that you meant them to last forever.

Proverbs 28:21-22 (The Message)

 21 Playing favorites is always a bad thing;
   you can do great harm in seemingly harmless ways.

 22 A miser in a hurry to get rich
   doesn't know that he'll end up broke.

Verse of the Day

“[God's Love Never Fails]Praise the LORD! He is good. God's love never fails. Praise God in heaven! God's love never fails.” - Psalm 136:1,26
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Alexis Carrel 02.jpgThought for the Day

French surgeon and biologist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1912 for pioneering vascular suturing techniques, Alexis Carrel wrote, “All of us, at certain moments of our lives, need to take advice and to receive help from other people.”

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