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, February 20, 2017

Bible Readings for February 20, 2017

Today our passages are Leviticus 9:7–10:20; Mark 4:26–5:20; Psalm 37:30-40; and Proverbs 10:6-7. The readings are the Contemporary English VersionIf 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.

Leviticus 9:7-10:20 (Contemporary English Version)

7Aaron, step up to the altar and offer the sacrifice to please the LORD, then offer the sacrifices for the forgiveness of your sins and for the sins of the people, just as the LORD has commanded.
    8Aaron stepped up to the altar and killed the bull that was to be the sacrifice for his sins. 9His sons brought him the blood. He dipped a finger in it, smeared some on the four corners of the bronze altar, and poured out the rest at its foot. 10But he sent up in smoke the fat, the kidneys, and the lower part of the liver, just as the LORD had commanded Moses. 11Then Aaron burned the skin and the flesh outside the camp.
    12After Aaron had killed the ram that was sacrificed to please the LORD, Aaron's sons brought him the blood, and he splattered it against all four sides of the altar. 13They brought him each piece of the animal, including the head, and he burned them all on the altar. 14He washed the insides and the hind legs and also sent them up in smoke.
    15Next, Aaron sacrificed the goat for the sins of the people, as he had done with the sacrifice for his own sins. 16And so, he burned this sacrifice on the altar in the proper way. 17He also presented the grain sacrifice and burned a handful of the flour on the altar as part of the morning sacrifice.
    18At last, he killed the bull and the ram as a sacrifice to ask the LORD's blessing on the people. Aaron's sons brought him the blood, and he splattered it against the four sides of the altar. 19His sons placed all the fat, as well as the kidneys and the lower part of the liver 20on top of the choice ribs. 21Then Aaron burned the fat on the altar and lifted up [a] the ribs and the right hind leg to show that these were dedicated to the LORD. This was done just as the LORD had instructed Moses. 22Aaron held out his hand and gave the people his blessing, before coming down from the bronze altar where he had offered the sacrifices. 23He and Moses went into the sacred tent, and when they came out, they gave the people their blessing. Then the LORD appeared to the people in all of his glory. 24The LORD sent fiery flames that burned up everything on the altar, and when everyone saw this, they shouted and fell to their knees to worship the LORD.

Leviticus 10

Nadab and Abihu
 1Nadab and Abihu were two of Aaron's sons, but they disobeyed the LORD by burning incense to him on a fire pan, when they were not supposed to. [b] 2Suddenly the LORD sent fiery flames and burned them to death. 3Then Moses told Aaron that this was exactly what the LORD had meant when he said: " I demand respect    from my priests,
   and I will be praised
   by everyone!"
   Aaron was speechless.
    4Moses sent for Mishael and Elzaphan, the two sons of Aaron's uncle Uzziel. Then he told them, " Take these two dead relatives of yours outside the camp far from the entrance to the sacred tent." 5So they dragged the dead men away by their clothes.
    6Then Moses told Aaron and his other two sons, Eleazar and Ithamar:
   Don't show your sorrow by messing up your hair and tearing your priestly clothes, or the LORD will get angry. He will kill the three of you and punish everyone else. It's all right for your relatives, the people of Israel, to mourn for those he destroyed by fire. 7But you are the LORD's chosen priests, and you must not leave the sacred tent, or you will die.
   Aaron and his two sons obeyed Moses.
    8The LORD said to Aaron:
    9When you or your sons enter the sacred tent, you must never drink beer or wine. If you do, you will die right there! This law will never change. 10You must learn the difference between what is holy and what isn't holy and between the clean and the unclean. 11You must also teach the people of Israel everything that I commanded Moses to say to them.
    12Moses told Aaron and his two sons, Eleazar and Ithamar:
   The grain sacrifice that was offered to give thanks to the LORD [c] is very holy. So make bread without yeast from the part that wasn't sent up in smoke and eat it beside the altar. 13The LORD has said that this belongs to you and your sons, and that it must be eaten in a holy place. 14-15But the choice ribs and the hind leg that were lifted up [d] may be eaten by your entire family, as long as you do so in an acceptable place. [e] These parts are yours from the sacrifices that the people offer to ask the LORD's blessing. [f] This is what the LORD has commanded, and it will never change. 16When Moses asked around and learned that the ram for the sin sacrifice had already been burned on the altar, he became angry with Eleazar and Ithamar and said, 17" Why didn't you eat the meat from this sacrifice in an acceptable place? It is very holy, and the LORD has given you this sacrifice to remove Israel's sin and guilt. 18Whenever an animal's blood isn't brought into the sacred tent, I commanded you to eat its meat in an acceptable place, but you burned it instead."
    19Their father Aaron replied, " Today two of my sons offered the sacrifice for sin and the sacrifice to please the LORD, and look what has happened to me! Would the LORD have approved if I had eaten the sacrifice for sin?"
    20Moses was satisfied with Aaron's reply.
  1. Leviticus 9:21 lifted up: See the note at 7.29,30.
  2. Leviticus 10:1 when they. . . to: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  3. Leviticus 10:12 grain sacrifice. . . to give thanks to the LORD: See the note at 2.1.
  4. Leviticus 10:14 lifted up: See the note at 7.29,30.
  5. Leviticus 10:14 acceptable place: See 6.24-30.
  6. Leviticus 10:14 to ask the LORD's blessing: See the note at 3.1.

Mark 4:26-5:20 (Contemporary English Version)

Another Story about Seeds
 26Again Jesus said:    God's kingdom is like what happens when a farmer scatters seed in a field. 27The farmer sleeps at night and is up and around during the day. Yet the seeds keep sprouting and growing, and he doesn't understand how. 28It is the ground that makes the seeds sprout and grow into plants that produce grain. 29Then when harvest season comes and the grain is ripe, the farmer cuts it with a sickle. [a]
A Mustard Seed
(Matthew 13.31,32; Luke 13.18,19)
 30Finally, Jesus said:    What is God's kingdom like? What story can I use to explain it? 31It is like what happens when a mustard seed is planted in the ground. It is the smallest seed in all the world. 32But once it is planted, it grows larger than any garden plant. It even puts out branches that are big enough for birds to nest in its shade.
The Reason for Teaching with Stories
(Matthew 13.34,35)
 33Jesus used many other stories when he spoke to the people, and he taught them as much as they could understand. 34He did not tell them anything without using stories. But when he was alone with his disciples, he explained everything to them.    
A Storm
(Matthew 8.23-27; Luke 8.22-25)
 35That evening, Jesus said to his disciples, "Let's cross to the east side." 36So they left the crowd, and his disciples started across the lake with him in the boat. Some other boats followed along. 37Suddenly a windstorm struck the lake. Waves started splashing into the boat, and it was about to sink.     38Jesus was in the back of the boat with his head on a pillow, and he was asleep. His disciples woke him and said, "Teacher, don't you care that we're about to drown?"
    39Jesus got up and ordered the wind and the waves to be quiet. The wind stopped, and everything was calm.
    40Jesus asked his disciples, "Why were you afraid? Don't you have any faith?"
    41Now they were more afraid than ever and said to each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!"

Mark 5

A Man with Evil Spirits
(Matthew 8.28-34; Luke 8.26-39)
 1Jesus and his disciples crossed Lake Galilee and came to shore near the town of Gerasa. [b] 2When he was getting out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit quickly ran to him 3from the graveyard [c] where he had been living. No one was able to tie the man up anymore, not even with a chain. 4He had often been put in chains and leg irons, but he broke the chains and smashed the leg irons. No one could control him. 5Night and day he was in the graveyard or on the hills, yelling and cutting himself with stones.     6When the man saw Jesus in the distance, he ran up to him and knelt down. 7He shouted, "Jesus, Son of God in heaven, what do you want with me? Promise me in God's name that you won't torture me!" 8The man said this because Jesus had already told the evil spirit to come out of him.
    9Jesus asked, "What is your name?"
   The man answered, "My name is Lots, because I have `lots' of evil spirits." 10He then begged Jesus not to send them away.
    11Over on the hillside a large herd of pigs was feeding. 12So the evil spirits begged Jesus, "Send us into those pigs! Let us go into them." 13Jesus let them go, and they went out of the man and into the pigs. The whole herd of about two thousand pigs rushed down the steep bank into the lake and drowned.
    14The men taking care of the pigs ran to the town and the farms to spread the news. Then the people came out to see what had happened. 15When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had once been full of demons. He was sitting there with his clothes on and in his right mind, and they were terrified.
    16Everyone who had seen what had happened told about the man and the pigs. 17Then the people started begging Jesus to leave their part of the country.
    18When Jesus was getting into the boat, the man begged to go with him. 19But Jesus would not let him. Instead, he said, "Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you and how good he has been to you."
    20The man went away into the region near the ten cities known as Decapolis [d] and began telling everyone how much Jesus had done for him. Everyone who heard what had happened was amazed.
  1. Mark 4:29 sickle: A knife with a long curved blade, used to cut grain and other crops.
  2. Mark 5:1 Gerasa: Some manuscripts have "Gadara," and others have "Gergesa."
  3. Mark 5:3 graveyard: It was thought that demons and evil spirits lived in graveyards.
  4. Mark 5:20 the ten cities known as Decapolis: A group of ten cities east of Samaria and Galilee, where the people followed the Greek way of life.


Psalm 37:30-40 (Contemporary English Version)

30Words of wisdom come
   when good people speak
   for justice.
    31They remember God's teachings,
   and they never take
   a wrong step.
    32The wicked try to trap
   and kill good people,
    33but the LORD is on their side,
   and he will defend them
   when they are on trial.
    34Trust the LORD and follow him.
   He will give you the land,
   and you will see
   the wicked destroyed.
    35I have seen brutal people
   abuse others
   and grow strong
   like trees in rich soil. [a] 36Suddenly they disappeared!
   I looked, but they were gone
   and no longer there.
    37Think of the bright future
   for all the families
   of honest
   and innocent
   and peace-loving people.
    38But not a trace will be left
   of the wicked
   or their families.
    39The LORD protects his people,
   and they can come to him
   in times of trouble.
    40The LORD helps them
   and saves them from the wicked
   because they run to him.
  1. Psalm 37:35 like. . . soil: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

Proverbs 10:6-7 (Contemporary English Version)

6Everyone praises good people,
   but evil hides behind
   the words of the wicked.
    7Good people are remembered
   long after they are gone,
   but the wicked
   are soon forgotten.

Verse of the Day

“You will keep your friends if you forgive them, but you will lose your friends if you keep talking about what they did wrong.” - Proverbs 17:9
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Frederick Douglass portrait.jpg
Thought for the Day

African-American social reformer, abolitionist, orator, writer, and statesman, Frederick Douglass Not the least among the arguments whose consideration should dispose us to welcome among us the peoples of all countries, nationalities and colors, is the fact that all races and varieties of men are improvable. This is the grand distinguishing attribute of humanity, and separates man from all other animals. If it could be shown that any particular race of men are literally incapable of improvement, we might hesitate to welcome them here. But no such men are any where to be found, and if they were, it is not likely that they would ever trouble us with their presence.

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