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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Saturday, July 22, 2017

Bible Readings for July 22, 2017

Today our passages are 2 Chronicles 6:12–8:10; Romans 7:14–8:8; Psalm 18:1-15; and Proverbs 19:24-25. The readings are from the Contemporary English VersionIf you find these readings helpful, please consider sending an offering directly to Cove Presbyterian Church, 3404 Main Steet, Weirton, West Virginia or through PayPal by using the link below.

2 Chronicles 6:12-8:10 (Contemporary English Version)

Solomon Prays at the Temple
(1 Kings 8.22-53)
 12-13Earlier, Solomon had a bronze platform made that was about eight feet square and five feet high, and he put it in the center of the outer courtyard near the altar. Solomon stood on the platform facing the altar with everyone standing behind him. Then he lifted his arms toward heaven; he knelt down    14and prayed:
   LORD God of Israel, no other god in heaven or on earth is like you!
   You never forget the agreement you made with your people, and you are loyal to anyone who faithfully obeys your teachings.
   15My father David was your servant, and today you have kept every promise you made to him.
   16You promised that someone from his family would always be king of Israel, if they do their best to obey you, just as he did.
   17Please keep this promise you made to your servant David.
   18There's not enough room in all of heaven for you, LORD God. How could you possibly live on earth in this temple I have built?
   19But I ask you to answer my prayer.
   20This is the temple where you have chosen to be worshiped. Please watch over it day and night and listen when I turn toward it and pray.
   21I am your servant, and the people of Israel belong to you, and so whenever any of us look toward this temple and pray, answer from your home in heaven and forgive our sins.
   22Suppose someone accuses a person of a crime, and the accused has to stand in front of the altar in your temple and say, "I swear I am innocent!"
   23Listen from heaven and decide who is right. Then punish the guilty person and let the innocent one go free.
   24Suppose your people Israel sin against you, and then an enemy defeats them. If they come to this temple and beg for forgiveness,
   25listen from your home in heaven. Forgive them and bring them back to the land you gave their ancestors.
   26Suppose your people sin against you, and you punish them by holding back the rain. If they stop sinning and turn toward this temple to pray in your name,
   27listen from your home in heaven and forgive them. The people of Israel are your servants, so teach them to live right. And send rain on the land you promised them forever.
   28Sometimes the crops may dry up or rot or be eaten by locusts [a] or grasshoppers, and your people will be starving. Sometimes enemies may surround their towns, or your people will become sick with deadly diseases.
   29Please listen when anyone in Israel truly feels sorry and sincerely prays with arms lifted toward your temple.
   30You know what is in everyone's heart. So from your home in heaven answer their prayers, according to what they do and what is in their hearts.
   31Then your people will worship you and obey you for as long as they live in the land you gave their ancestors.
   32Foreigners will hear about you and your mighty power, and some of them will come to live among your people Israel. If any of them pray toward this temple,
   33listen from your home in heaven and answer their prayers. Then everyone on earth will worship you, just as your own people Israel do, and they will know that I have built this temple in your honor.
   34Sometimes you will order your people to attack their enemies. Then your people will turn toward this temple I have built for you in your chosen city, and they will pray to you.
   35Answer their prayers from heaven and give them victory.
   36Everyone sins. But when your people sin against you, suppose you get angry enough to let their enemies drag them away to foreign countries.
   37-39Later, they may feel sorry for what they did and ask your forgiveness. Answer them when they pray toward this temple I have built for you in your chosen city, here in this land you gave their ancestors. From your home in heaven, listen to their sincere prayers and forgive your people who have sinned against you.
   40LORD God, hear us when we pray in this temple.
   41Come to your new home, where we have already placed the sacred chest, which is the symbol of your strength. I pray that when the priests announce your power to save people, those who are faithful to you will celebrate what you've done for them.
   42Always remember the love you had for your servant David, [b] so that you will not reject your chosen kings.

2 Chronicles 7

Solomon Dedicates the Temple
(1 Kings 8.62-66)
 1As soon as Solomon finished praying, fire came down from heaven and burned up the offerings. The LORD's dazzling glory then filled the temple,    2and the priests could not go in.
   3When the crowd of people saw the fire and the LORD's glory, they knelt down and worshiped the LORD. They prayed:
   "The LORD is good,
   and his love never ends."
   4-5Solomon and the people dedicated the temple to the LORD by sacrificing twenty-two thousand cattle and one hundred twenty thousand sheep.
   6Everybody stood up during the ceremony. The priests were in their assigned places, blowing their trumpets. And the Levites faced them, playing the musical instruments that David had made for them to use when they praised the LORD for his never-ending love.
   7On that same day, Solomon dedicated the courtyard in front of the temple and got it ready to be used for worship. The bronze altar he had made was too small, so he used the courtyard to offer sacrifices to please the LORD [c] and grain sacrifices, and also to send up in smoke the fat from the other offerings.
   8For seven days, Solomon and the crowd celebrated the Festival of Shelters, and people came from as far away as the Egyptian Gorge in the south and Lebo-Hamath in the north.
   9Then on the next day, everyone came together for worship. They had celebrated a total of fourteen days, seven days for the dedication of the altar and seven more days for the festival.
   10Then on the twenty-third day of the seventh month, [d] Solomon sent everyone home. They left very happy because of all the good things the LORD had done for David and Solomon, and for his people Israel.
The LORD Appears to Solomon Again
(1 Kings 9.1-9)
 11The LORD's temple and Solomon's palace were now finished. In fact, everything Solomon had planned to do was completed.    12Some time later, the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream and said:
   I heard your prayer, and I have chosen this temple as the place where sacrifices will be offered to me.
   13Suppose I hold back the rain or send locusts [e] to eat the crops or make my people suffer with deadly diseases.
   14If my own people will humbly pray and turn back to me and stop sinning, then I will answer them from heaven. I will forgive them and make their land fertile once again.
   15I will hear the prayers made in this temple,
   16because it belongs to me, and this is where I will be worshiped forever. I will never stop watching over it.
   17Your father David obeyed me, and now, Solomon, you must do the same. Obey my laws and teachings,
   18and I will keep my solemn promise to him that someone from your family will always be king of Israel.
   19But if you or any of the people of Israel disobey my laws or start worshiping foreign gods,
   20I will pull you out of this land I gave you. I will desert this temple where I said I would be worshiped, so that people everywhere will think it is only a joke and will make fun of it.
   21This temple is now magnificent. But when these things happen, everyone who walks by it will be shocked and will ask, "Why did the LORD do such a terrible thing to his people and to this temple?"
   22Then they will answer, "It was because the people of Israel rejected the LORD their God, who rescued their ancestors from Egypt, and they started worshiping other gods."

2 Chronicles 8

Other Things Solomon Did
(1 Kings 9.10-28)
 1It took twenty years for the LORD's temple and Solomon's palace to be built.    2After that, Solomon had his workers rebuild the towns that Hiram had given him. Then Solomon sent Israelites to live in those towns.
   3Solomon attacked and captured the town of Hamath-Zobah.
   4He had his workers build the town of Tadmor in the desert and some towns in Hamath where he could keep his supplies.
   5He strengthened Upper Beth-Horon and Lower Beth-Horon by adding walls and gates that could be locked.
   6He did the same thing to the town of Baalath and to the cities where he kept supplies, chariots, and horses. Solomon had his workers build whatever he wanted in Jerusalem, Lebanon, and anywhere else in his kingdom.
   7-9Solomon did not force the Israelites to do his work. Instead, they were his soldiers, officers, army commanders, and cavalry troops. But he did make slaves of the Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites who were living in Israel. These were the descendants of those foreigners the Israelites did not destroy, and they remained Israel's slaves.
   10Solomon appointed two hundred fifty officers to be in charge of his workers.
  1. 2 Chronicles 6:28 locusts: A type of grasshopper that comes in swarms and causes great damage to crops.
  2. 2 Chronicles 6:42 the love you had for your servant David: Or "how loyal your servant David was to you."
  3. 2 Chronicles 7:7 sacrifices to please the LORD: See the note at 1.6.
  4. 2 Chronicles 7:10 seventh month: See the note at 5.2,3.
  5. 2 Chronicles 7:13 locusts: See the note at 6.28.

Romans 7:14-8:8 (Contemporary English Version)

14We know that the Law is spiritual. But I am merely a human, and I have been sold as a slave to sin. 15In fact, I don't understand why I act the way I do. I don't do what I know is right. I do the things I hate. 16Although I don't do what I know is right, I agree that the Law is good. 17So I am not the one doing these evil things. The sin that lives in me is what does them.
    18I know that my selfish desires won't let me do anything that is good. Even when I want to do right, I cannot. 19Instead of doing what I know is right, I do wrong. 20And so, if I don't do what I know is right, I am no longer the one doing these evil things. The sin that lives in me is what does them.
    21The Law has shown me that something in me keeps me from doing what I know is right. 22With my whole heart I agree with the Law of God. 23But in every part of me I discover something fighting against my mind, and it makes me a prisoner of sin that controls everything I do. 24What a miserable person I am. Who will rescue me from this body that is doomed to die? 25Thank God! Jesus Christ will rescue me.
   So with my mind I serve the Law of God, although my selfish desires make me serve the law of sin.

Romans 8

Living by the Power of God's Spirit
 1If you belong to Christ Jesus, you won't be punished. 2The Holy Spirit will give you life that comes from Christ Jesus and will set you [a] free from sin and death. 3The Law of Moses cannot do this, because our selfish desires make the Law weak. But God set you free when he sent his own Son to be like us sinners and to be a sacrifice for our sin. God used Christ's body to condemn sin. 4He did this, so that we would do what the Law commands by obeying the Spirit instead of our own desires. 5People who are ruled by their desires think only of themselves. Everyone who is ruled by the Holy Spirit thinks about spiritual things. 6If our minds are ruled by our desires, we will die. But if our minds are ruled by the Spirit, we will have life and peace. 7Our desires fight against God, because they do not and cannot obey God's laws. 8If we follow our desires, we cannot please God.    
  1. Romans 8:2 you: Some manuscripts have " me."

Psalm 18:1-15 (Contemporary English Version)

Psalm 18

(For the music leader. A psalm by David, the LORD's servant. David sang this to the LORD after the LORD had rescued him from his enemies, but especially from Saul.)
David's Song of Thanks
 1I love you, LORD God,    and you make me strong.
    2You are my mighty rock, [a] my fortress, my protector,
   the rock where I am safe,
   my shield,
   my powerful weapon, [b] and my place of shelter.
    3I praise you, LORD!
   I prayed, and you rescued me
   from my enemies.
    4Death had wrapped
   its ropes around me,
   and I was almost swallowed
   by its flooding waters.
    5Ropes from the world
   of the dead
   had coiled around me,
   and death had set a trap
   in my path.
    6I was in terrible trouble
   when I called out to you,
   but from your temple
   you heard me
   and answered my prayer.
    7The earth shook and shivered,
   and the mountains trembled
   down to their roots.
   You were angry
    8and breathed out smoke.
   Scorching heat and fiery flames
   spewed from your mouth.
    9You opened the heavens
   like curtains,
   and you came down
   with storm clouds
   under your feet.
    10You rode on the backs
   of flying creatures
   and swooped down
   with the wind as wings.
    11Darkness was your robe;
   thunderclouds filled the sky,
   hiding you from sight.
    12Hailstones and fiery coals
   lit up the sky
   in front of you.
    13LORD Most High, your voice
   thundered from the heavens,
   as hailstones and fiery coals
   poured down like rain.
    14You scattered your enemies
   with arrows of lightning.
    15You roared at the sea,
   and its deepest channels
   could be seen.
   You snorted,
   and the earth shook
   to its foundations.
  1. Psalm 18:2 mighty rock: The Hebrew text has " rock," which is sometimes used in poetry to compare the Lord to a mountain where his people can run for protection from their enemies.
  2. Psalm 18:2 my powerful weapon: The Hebrew text has " the horn," which refers to the horn of a bull, one of the most powerful animals in ancient Palestine.

Proverbs 19:24-25 (Contemporary English Version)

24Some people are too lazy
   to lift a hand
   to feed themselves.
    25Stupid fools learn good sense
   by seeing others punished;
   a sensible person learns
   by being corrected.

Verse of the Day

“Then Jesus asked them, "But who do you say I am?" Simon Peter spoke up, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” - Matthew 16:15-16
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Image result for Tom RobbinsThought for the Day

American novelist, Tom Robbins wrote, “When we're incomplete, we're always searching for somebody to complete us. When, after a few years or a few months of a relationship, we find that we're still unfulfilled, we blame our partners and take up with somebody more promising. This can go on and on — series polygamy — until we admit that while a partner can add sweet dimension to our lives, we, each of us, are responsible for our own fulfillment. Nobody else can provide it for us, and to believe otherwise is to delude ourselves dangerously and to program for eventual failure every relationship we enter.”

A Joke for Today

Related image
Why Some Men Have Dogs And Not Wives

1. The later you are, the more excited your dogs are to see you. 

2. Dogs don't notice if you call them by another dog's name. 

3. Dogs like it if you leave a lot of things on the floor. 

4. A dog's parents never visit. 

5. Dogs agree that you have to raise your voice to get your point across. 

6. You never have to wait for a dog; they're ready to go 24 hours a day. 

7. Dogs find you amusing when you're drunk. 

8. Dogs like to go hunting and fishing. 

9. A dog will not wake you up at night to ask, If I died, would you get another dog?? 

10. If a dog has babies, you can put an ad in the paper and give them away. 

11. A dog will let you put a studded collar on it without calling you a pervert. 

12. If a dog smells another dog on you, they don't get mad. They just think it's interesting.. 

13. Dogs like to ride in the back of a pickup truck. 

And last, but not least: 

14. If a dog leaves, it won't take half of your stuff. 

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