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.

The Bible in a Year is a ministry of Cove Presbyterian Church. We need your support to keep posting. If you find it helpful, you can support this blog by your contributions. They may be sent to Cove Presbyterian Church, 3404 Main Street, Weirton, WV 26062. You can also use the PayPal link below:

Image result for paypal donate

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Bible Readings for August 20, 2017

Today our passages are 
Esther 8:1–10:3; 1 Corinthians 12:27–13:13; Psalm 37:1-11; and Proverbs 21:23-24. 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.

Esther 8-10:3 (Contemporary English Version)

Esther 8

A Happy Ending for the Jews
 1Before the end of the day, King Xerxes gave Esther everything that had belonged to Haman, the enemy of the Jews. Esther told the king that Mordecai was her cousin. So the king made Mordecai one of his highest officials 2and gave him the royal ring that Haman had worn. Then Esther put Mordecai in charge of Haman's property.     3Once again Esther went to speak to the king. This time she fell down at his feet, crying and begging, " Please stop Haman's evil plan to have the Jews killed!" 4King Xerxes held out the golden scepter to Esther, 5and she got up and said, " Your Majesty, I know that you will do the right thing and that you really love me. Please stop what Haman has planned. He has already sent letters demanding that the Jews in all your provinces be killed, 6and I can't bear to see my people and my own relatives destroyed."
    7King Xerxes then said to Esther and Mordecai, " I have already ordered Haman to be hanged and his house given to Esther, because of his evil plans to kill the Jews. 8I now give you permission to make a law that will save the lives of your people. You may use my ring to seal the law, so that it can never be changed."
    9On the twenty-third day of Sivan, [a] the third month, the king's secretaries wrote the law. They obeyed Mordecai and wrote to the Jews, the rulers, the governors, and the officials of all one hundred twenty-seven provinces from India to Ethiopia. [b] The letters were written in every language used in the kingdom, including the Jewish language. 10They were written in the name of King Xerxes and sealed with his ring. Then they were taken by messengers who rode the king's finest and fastest horses. 11-13In these letters the king said:
   On the thirteenth day of Adar, [c] the twelfth month, the Jews in every city and province will be allowed to get together and defend themselves. They may destroy any army that attacks them, and they may kill all of their enemies, including women and children. They may also take everything that belongs to their enemies. A copy of this law is to be posted in every province and read by everyone.
    14-15Then the king ordered his messengers to take their fastest horses and deliver the law as quickly as possible to every province. When Mordecai left, he was wearing clothes fit for a king. He wore blue and white robes, a large gold crown, and a cape made of fine linen and purple cloth.
   After the law was announced in Susa, everyone shouted and cheered, 16and the Jews were no longer afraid. In fact, they were very happy and felt that they had won a victory.
    17In every province and city where the law was sent, the Jews had parties and celebrated. Many of the people in the provinces accepted the Jewish religion, because they were now afraid of the Jews.

Esther 9

The Jews Destroy Their Enemies
 1The first law that the king had made was to be followed on the thirteenth day of Adar, [d] the twelfth month. This was the very day that the enemies of the Jews had hoped to do away with them. But the Jews turned things around, 2and in the cities of every province they came together to attack their enemies. Everyone was afraid of the Jews, and no one could do anything to oppose them. 3The leaders of the provinces, the rulers, the governors, and the court officials were afraid of Mordecai and took sides with the Jews. 4Everyone in the provinces knew that the king had promoted him and had given him a lot of power.     5The Jews took their swords and did away with their enemies, without showing any mercy. 6-10They killed five hundred people in Susa, [e] but they did not take anything that belonged to the ones they killed. Haman had been one of the worst enemies of the Jews, and ten of his sons were among those who were killed. Their names were Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha. 11Later that day, someone told the king how many people had been killed in Susa. [f] 12Then he told Esther, " Five hundred people, including Haman's ten sons, have been killed in Susa alone. If that many were killed here, what must have happened in the provinces? Is there anything else you want done? Just tell me, and it will be done." 13Esther answered, " Your Majesty, please let the Jews in Susa fight to defend themselves tomorrow, just as they did today. And order the bodies of Haman's ten sons to be hanged in public."
    14King Xerxes did what Esther had requested, and the bodies of Haman's sons were hung in Susa. 15Then on the fourteenth day of Adar the Jews of the city got together and killed three hundred more people. But they still did not take anything that belonged to their enemies.
    16-17On the thirteenth day of Adar, the Jews in the provinces had come together to defend themselves. They killed seventy-five thousand of their enemies, but the Jews did not take anything that belonged to the ones they killed. Then on the fourteenth day of the month the Jews celebrated with a feast.
    18On the fifteenth day of the month the Jews in Susa held a holiday and celebrated, after killing their enemies on the thirteenth and the fourteenth. 19This is why the Jews in the villages now celebrate on the fourteenth day of the month. It is a joyful holiday that they celebrate by feasting and sending gifts of food to each other.
The Festival of Purim
 20Mordecai wrote down everything that had happened. Then he sent letters to the Jews everywhere in the provinces 21and told them:    Each year you must celebrate on both the fourteenth and the fifteenth of Adar, 22the days when we Jews defeated our enemies. Remember this month as a time when our sorrow was turned to joy, and celebration took the place of crying. Celebrate by having parties and by giving to the poor and by sharing gifts of food with each other.
    23They followed Mordecai's instructions and set aside these two days every year as a time of celebration.
The Reason for the Festival of Purim
 24Haman was the son of Hammedatha and a descendant of Agag. He hated the Jews so much that he planned to destroy them, but he wanted to find out the best time to do it. So he cast lots. [g] 25Esther went to King Xerxes and asked him to save her people. Then the king gave written orders for Haman and his sons to be punished in the same terrible way that Haman had in mind for the Jews. So they were hanged. 26Mordecai's letter had said that the Jews must celebrate for two days because of what had happened to them. This time of celebration is called Purim, [h] which is the Hebrew word for the lots that were cast. 27Now every year the Jews set aside these two days for having parties and celebrating, just as they were told to do. 28From now on, all Jewish families must remember to celebrate Purim on these two days each year. 29Queen Esther, daughter of Abihail, wanted to give full authority to Mordecai's letter about the Festival of Purim, and with his help she wrote a letter about the feast. 30Copies of this letter were sent to Jews in the one hundred twenty-seven provinces of King Xerxes. In the letter they said:    We pray that all of you will live in peace and safety.
    31You and your descendants must always remember to celebrate Purim at the time and in the way that we have said. You must also follow the instructions that we have given you about mourning and going without eating. [i] 32These laws about Purim are written by the authority of Queen Esther.

Esther 10

The Greatness of Xerxes and Mordecai
 1King Xerxes made everyone in his kingdom pay taxes, even those in lands across the sea. 2All the great and famous things that King Xerxes did are written in the record books of the kings of Media and Persia. These records also tell about the honors that the king gave to Mordecai. 3Next to the king himself, Mordecai was the highest official in the kingdom. He was a popular leader of the Jews, because he helped them in many ways and would even speak to the king for them.    
  1. Esther 8:9 Sivan: The third month of the Hebrew calendar, from about mid-May to mid-June.
  2. Esther 8:9 Ethiopia: See the note at 1.1,2.
  3. Esther 8:11 Adar: See the note at 3.7.
  4. Esther 9:1 Adar: See the note at 3.7.
  5. Esther 9:6 in Susa: Or " in the royal fortress in Susa."
  6. Esther 9:11 in Susa: Or " in the royal fortress in Susa."
  7. Esther 9:24 cast lots: See the note at 3.7.
  8. Esther 9:26 Purim: The Jewish festival of Purim got its name from " purim," which is the Babylonian name for the lots that Haman used. Purim is celebrated each year on the 14th and 15th of Adar, which is about the first of March.
  9. Esther 9:31 going without eating: See the note at 4.3.

1 Corinthians 12:27-13:13 (Contemporary English Version)

27Together you are the body of Christ. Each one of you is part of his body. 28First, God chose some people to be apostles and prophets and teachers for the church. But he also chose some to work miracles or heal the sick or help others or be leaders or speak different kinds of languages. 29Not everyone is an apostle. Not everyone is a prophet. Not everyone is a teacher. Not everyone can work miracles. 30Not everyone can heal the sick. Not everyone can speak different kinds of languages. Not everyone can tell what these languages mean. 31I want you to desire the best gifts. [a] So I will show you a much better way.

1 Corinthians 13

 1What if I could speak    all languages
   of humans
   and of angels?
   If I did not love others,
   I would be nothing more
   than a noisy gong
   or a clanging cymbal.
    2What if I could prophesy
   and understand all secrets
   and all knowledge?
   And what if I had faith
   that moved mountains?
   I would be nothing,
   unless I loved others.
    3What if I gave away all
   that I owned
   and let myself
   be burned alive? [b] I would gain nothing,
   unless I loved others.
    4Love is kind and patient,
   never jealous, boastful,
   proud, or 5rude.
   Love isn't selfish
   or quick tempered.
   It doesn't keep a record
   of wrongs that others do.
    6Love rejoices in the truth,
   but not in evil.
    7Love is always supportive,
   loyal, hopeful,
   and trusting.
    8Love never fails!
   Everyone who prophesies
   will stop,
   and unknown languages
   will no longer
   be spoken.
   All that we know
   will be forgotten.
    9We don't know everything,
   and our prophecies
   are not complete.
    10But what is perfect
   will someday appear,
   and what isn't perfect
   will then disappear.
    11When we were children,
   we thought and reasoned
   as children do.
   But when we grew up,
   we quit our childish ways.
    12Now all we can see of God
   is like a cloudy picture
   in a mirror.
   Later we will see him
   face to face.
   We don't know everything,
   but then we will,
   just as God completely
   understands us.
    13For now there are faith,
   hope, and love.
   But of these three,
   the greatest is love.
  1. 1 Corinthians 12:31 I want you to desire the best gifts: Or "You desire the best gifts."
  2. 1 Corinthians 13:3 and let myself be burned alive: Some manuscripts have "so that I could brag."

Psalm 37:1-11 (Contemporary English Version)

Psalm 37

(By David.)
Trust the LORD
 1Don't be annoyed by anyone    who does wrong,
   and don't envy them.
    2They will soon disappear
   like grass without rain.
    3Trust the LORD and live right!
   The land will be yours,
   and you will be safe.
    4Do what the LORD wants,
   and he will give you
   your heart's desire.
    5Let the LORD lead you
   and trust him to help.
    6Then it will be as clear
   as the noonday sun
   that you were right.
    7Be patient and trust the LORD.
   Don't let it bother you
   when all goes well for those
   who do sinful things.
    8Don't be angry or furious.
   Anger can lead to sin.
    9All sinners will disappear,
   but if you trust the LORD,
   the land will be yours.
    10Sinners will soon disappear,
   never to be found,
    11but the poor will take the land
   and enjoy a big harvest.

Proverbs 21:23-24 (Contemporary English Version)

23Watching what you say
   can save you
   a lot of trouble.
    24If you are proud and conceited,
   everyone will say,
   "You're a snob!"

Verse of the Day

“I will always look to you, as you stand beside me and protect me from fear.” - Psalm 16:8
Today's passage is from the Contemporary English Version.

Image result for Paul TillichThought for the Day

German American Christian existentialist philosopher and theologian who is widely regarded as one of the most influential theologians of the twentieth century, Paul Tillich wrote, “Faith consists in being vitally concerned with that ultimate reality to which I give the symbolical name of God. Whoever reflects earnestly on the meaning of life is on the verge of an act of faith.”

A Joke for Today

Image result for a jewish beeTwo bees ran into each other. The first bee asked the other how things were going. 

"Really bad," said the second bee. "The weather has been really wet and damp and there aren't any flowers or pollen, so I can't make any honey." 

"No problem," said the first bee. "Just fly down five blocks and turn left. Keep going until you see all the cars. There's a Bar Mitzvah going on and there are all kinds of fresh flowers and fruit." 

"Thanks for the tip," said the second bee, and he flew away. 

A few hours later, the two bees ran into each other again. The first bee asked, "How'd it go?"

“Great!" said the second bee. "It was everything you said it would be." 

"Uh, what's that thing on your head?" asked the first bee. 

"That's my yarmulke," said the second bee. "I didn't want them to think I was a wasp."

No comments:

Post a Comment