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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Monday, January 16, 2017

Bible Readings for January 16, 2017

Today our passages are Genesis 32:13–34:31; Matthew 11:7-30; Psalm 14:1-7; and Proverbs 3:19-20. The readings are the Contemporary English Version.  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.

Genesis 32:13-34:31 (Contemporary English Version)

13After Jacob had spent the night there, he chose some animals as gifts for Esau: 14-15two hundred female goats and twenty males, two hundred female sheep and twenty males, thirty female camels with their young, forty cows and ten bulls, and twenty female donkeys and ten males.
    16Jacob put servants in charge of each herd and told them, "Go ahead of me and keep a space between each herd." 17Then he said to the servant in charge of the first herd, "When Esau meets you, he will ask whose servant you are. He will want to know where you are going and who owns those animals in front of you. 18So tell him, `They belong to your servant Jacob, who is coming this way. He is sending them as a gift to his master Esau.' "
    19Jacob also told the men in charge of the second and third herds and those who followed to say the same thing when they met Esau. 20And Jacob told them to be sure to say that he was right behind them. Jacob hoped the gifts would make Esau friendly, so Esau would be glad to see him when they met. 21Jacob's men took the gifts on ahead of him, but he spent the night in camp.
Jacob's Name Is Changed to Israel
 22-23Jacob got up in the middle of the night and took his wives, his eleven children, and everything he owned across to the other side of the Jabbok River for safety. 24Afterwards, Jacob went back and spent the rest of the night alone.    A man came and fought with Jacob until just before daybreak. 25When the man saw that he could not win, he struck Jacob on the hip and threw it out of joint. 26They kept on wrestling until the man said, "Let go of me! It's almost daylight."
   "You can't go until you bless me," Jacob replied.
    27Then the man asked, "What is your name?"
   "Jacob," he answered.
    28The man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob. You have wrestled with God and with men, and you have won. That's why your name will be Israel." [a] 29Jacob said, "Now tell me your name."
   "Don't you know who I am?" he asked. And he blessed Jacob.
    30Jacob said, "I have seen God face to face, and I am still alive." So he named the place Peniel. [b] 31The sun was coming up as Jacob was leaving Peniel. He was limping because he had been struck on the hip, 32and the muscle on his hip joint had been injured. That's why even today the people of Israel don't eat the hip muscle of any animal.

Genesis 33

Jacob Meets Esau
 1Later that day Jacob met Esau coming with his four hundred men. So Jacob had his children walk with their mothers. 2The two servant women, Zilpah and Bilhah, together with their children went first, followed by Leah and her children, then by Rachel and Joseph. 3Jacob himself walked in front of them all, bowing to the ground seven times as he came near his brother.     4But Esau ran toward Jacob and hugged and kissed him. Then the two brothers started crying.
    5When Esau noticed the women and children he asked, "Whose children are these?"
   Jacob answered, "These are the ones the LORD has been kind enough to give to me, your servant."
    6Then the two servant women and their children came and bowed down to Esau. 7Next, Leah and her children came and bowed down; finally, Joseph and Rachel also came and bowed down.
    8Esau asked Jacob, "What did you mean by these herds I met along the road?"
   "Master," Jacob answered, "I sent them so that you would be friendly to me."
    9"But, brother, I already have plenty," Esau replied. "Keep them for yourself."
    10"No!" Jacob said. "Please accept these gifts as a sign of your friendship for me. When you welcomed me and I saw your face, it was like seeing the face of God. 11Please accept these gifts I brought to you. God has been good to me, and I have everything I need." Jacob kept insisting until Esau accepted the gifts.
    12"Let's get ready to travel," Esau said. "I'll go along with you."
    13But Jacob answered, "Master, you know traveling is hard on children, and I have to look after the sheep and goats that are nursing their young. If my animals travel too much in one day, they will all die. 14Why don't you go on ahead and let me travel along slowly with the children, the herds, and the flocks. We can meet again in the country of Edom."
    15Esau replied, "Let me leave some of my men with you."
   "You don't have to do that," Jacob answered. "I am happy, simply knowing that you are friendly to me."
    16So Esau left for Edom. 17But Jacob went to Succoth, [c] where he built a house for himself and set up shelters for his animals. That's why the place is called Succoth.
Jacob Arrives at Shechem
 18After leaving northern Syria, [d] Jacob arrived safely at Shechem in Canaan and set up camp outside the city. 19The land where he camped was owned by the descendants of Hamor, the father of Shechem. So Jacob paid them one hundred pieces of silver [e] for the property, 20then he set up his tents and built an altar there to honor the God of Israel.

Genesis 34

Dinah Is Raped
 1Dinah, the daughter of Jacob and Leah, went to visit some of the women who lived there. 2She was seen by Hamor's son Shechem, the leader of the Hivites, and he grabbed her and raped her. 3But Shechem was attracted to Dinah, so he told her how much he loved her. 4He even asked his father to get her for his wife.     5Meanwhile, Jacob heard what had happened. But his sons were out in the fields with the cattle, so he did not do anything at the time. 6Hamor arrived at Jacob's home 7just as Jacob's sons were coming in from work. When they learned that their sister had been raped, they became furiously angry. Nothing is more disgraceful than rape, and it should not be tolerated in Israel.
    8Hamor said to Jacob and his sons:
   My son Shechem really loves Dinah. Please let him marry her. 9Why don't you start letting your families marry into our families and ours marry into yours? 10You can share this land with us. Move freely about until you find the property you want; then buy it and settle down here.
    11Shechem added, "Do this favor for me, and I'll give whatever you want. 12Ask anything, no matter how expensive. I'll do anything, just let me marry Dinah."
    13Jacob's sons wanted to get even with Shechem and his father because of what had happened to their sister. 14So they tricked them by saying:
   You're not circumcised! [f] It would be a disgrace for us to let you marry Dinah now. 15But we will let you marry her, if you and the other men in your tribe get circumcised. 16Then your families can marry into ours, and ours can marry into yours, and we can live together like one nation. 17But if you don't agree to get circumcised, we'll take Dinah and leave this place. 18Hamor and Shechem liked what was said. 19Shechem was the most respected person in his family, and he was so in love with Dinah that he hurried off to get everything done. 20The two men met with the other leaders of their city and told them:
    21These people really are friendly. Why not let them move freely about until they find the property they want? There's enough land here for them and for us. Then our families can marry into theirs, and theirs can marry into ours.
    22We have to do only one thing before they will agree to stay here and become one nation with us. Our men will have to be circumcised like their men. 23Just think! We'll get their property, as well as their flocks and herds. All we have to do is to agree, and they will live here with us.
    24Every grown man followed this advice and got circumcised.
Dinah's Brothers Take Revenge
 25Three days later the men who had been circumcised were still weak from pain. So Simeon and Levi, [g] two of Dinah's brothers, attacked with their swords and killed every man in town, 26including Hamor and Shechem. Then they took Dinah and left. 27Jacob's other sons came and took everything they wanted. All this was done because of the horrible thing that had happened to their sister. 28They took sheep, goats, donkeys, and everything else that was in the town or the fields. 29After taking everything of value from the houses, they dragged away the wives and children of their victims. 30Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, "Look what you've done! Now I'm in real trouble with the Canaanites and Perizzites who live around here. There aren't many of us, and if they attack, they'll kill everyone in my household."     31They answered, "Was it right to let our own sister be treated that way?"
  1. Genesis 32:28 Israel: In Hebrew one meaning of "Israel" is "a man who wrestles with God."
  2. Genesis 32:30 Peniel: In Hebrew "Peniel" means "face of God."
  3. Genesis 33:17 Succoth: In Hebrew "Succoth" means "shelters."
  4. Genesis 33:18 northern Syria: See the note at 24.10.
  5. Genesis 33:19 pieces of silver: Or "lambs" or "cattle."
  6. Genesis 34:14 You're not circumcised: Israelite boys were circumcised when they were eight days old, and no uncircumcised man could be part of the people of Israel.
  7. Genesis 34:25 Simeon and Levi: Dinah's full brothers.

Matthew 11:7-30 (Contemporary English Version)

7As John's followers were going away, Jesus spoke to the crowds about John:
   What sort of person did you go out into the desert to see? Was he like tall grass blown about by the wind? 8What kind of man did you go out to see? Was he someone dressed in fine clothes? People who dress like that live in the king's palace. 9What did you really go out to see? Was he a prophet? He certainly was. I tell you that he was more than a prophet. 10In the Scriptures God says about him, "I am sending my messenger ahead of you to get things ready for you." 11I tell you that no one ever born on this earth is greater than John the Baptist. But whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than John.
    12From the time of John the Baptist until now, violent people have been trying to take over the kingdom of heaven by force. 13All the Books of the Prophets and the Law of Moses [a] told what was going to happen up to the time of John. 14And if you believe them, John is Elijah, the prophet you are waiting for. 15If you have ears, pay attention! 16You people are like children sitting in the market and shouting to each other,
    17"We played the flute,
   but you would not dance!
   We sang a funeral song,
   but you would not mourn!"
    18John the Baptist did not go around eating and drinking, and you said, "That man has a demon in him!" 19But the Son of Man goes around eating and drinking, and you say, "That man eats and drinks too much! He is even a friend of tax collectors [b] and sinners." Yet Wisdom is shown to be right by what it does.
The Unbelieving Towns
(Luke 10.13-15)
 20In the towns where Jesus had worked most of his miracles, the people refused to turn to God. So Jesus was upset with them and said:     21You people of Chorazin are in for trouble! You people of Bethsaida are in for trouble too! If the miracles that took place in your towns had happened in Tyre and Sidon, the people there would have turned to God long ago. They would have dressed in sackcloth and put ashes on their heads. [c] 22I tell you that on the day of judgment the people of Tyre and Sidon will get off easier than you will. 23People of Capernaum, do you think you will be honored in heaven? You will go down to hell! If the miracles that took place in your town had happened in Sodom, that town would still be standing. 24So I tell you that on the day of judgment the people of Sodom will get off easier than you.
Come to Me and Rest
(Luke 10.21,22)
 25At that moment Jesus said:    My Father, Lord of heaven and earth, I am grateful that you hid all this from wise and educated people and showed it to ordinary people. 26Yes, Father, that is what pleased you.
    27My Father has given me everything, and he is the only one who knows the Son. The only one who truly knows the Father is the Son. But the Son wants to tell others about the Father, so that they can know him too.
    28If you are tired from carrying heavy burdens, come to me and I will give you rest. 29Take the yoke [d] I give you. Put it on your shoulders and learn from me. I am gentle and humble, and you will find rest. 30This yoke is easy to bear, and this burden is light.
  1. Matthew 11:13 the Books of the Prophets and the Law of Moses: The Jewish Scriptures, that is, the Old Testament.
  2. Matthew 11:19 tax collectors: See the note at 5.46.
  3. Matthew 11:21 sackcloth. . . ashes on their heads: This was one way that people showed how sorry they were for their sins.
  4. Matthew 11:29 yoke: Yokes were put on the necks of animals, so that they could pull a plow or wagon. A yoke was a symbol of obedience and hard work.

Psalm 14:1-7 (Contemporary English Version)

Psalm 14

(A psalm by David for the music leader.)
No One Can Ignore the LORD
 1Only a fool would say,    "There is no God!"
   People like that are worthless;
   they are heartless and cruel
   and never do right.
    2From heaven the LORD
   looks down to see
   if anyone is wise enough
   to search for him.
    3But all of them are corrupt;
   no one does right.
    4Won't you evil people learn?
   You refuse to pray,
   and you gobble down
   the LORD's people.
    5But you will be frightened,
   because God is on the side
   of every good person.
    6You may spoil the plans
   of the poor,
   but the LORD protects them.
    7I long for someone from Zion
   to come and save Israel!
   Our LORD, when you bless
   your people again,
   Jacob's family will be glad,
   and Israel will celebrate.

Proverbs 3:19-20 (Contemporary English Version)

19By his wisdom and knowledge
   the LORD created
   heaven and earth.
    20By his understanding
   he let the ocean break loose
   and clouds release the rain.

Verse of the Day

“[God's Spirit and Our Own Desires]If you are guided by the Spirit, you won't obey your selfish desires.” - Galatians 5:16
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Thought for the Day

American author and humorist, Mark Twain wrote, “You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.”

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