Friday, September 17, 2010

Yom Kippur: Day of Atonement

Morning Reading:  Lev 16, Isaiah 57:14-58:14; Romans 3:21-26; Hebrews 7-8; Numbers 29:7-11; Isaiah 52:13-53:12

K'doshim (Holy People)

Parashah 30:   K'doshim (Holy People)  
(In regular years read with Parashah 29, in leap years read separately.)

Leviticus 19:1-20:27; Amos 9:7-15, Ezekiel 20:2-20; Matthew 5:33-37, 5:43-48, 15:1-11, 19:16-30, 22:33-40; Mark 7:1-23, 12:28-34; Luke 10:25-37; Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 5:13-26; James 2:1-9; 1 Peter 1:13-21

Leviticus 19

Various Laws
 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: 'Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.  3 " 'Each of you must respect his mother and father, and you must observe my Sabbaths. I am the LORD your God.
 4 " 'Do not turn to idols or make gods of cast metal for yourselves. I am the LORD your God.
 5 " 'When you sacrifice a fellowship offering  to the LORD, sacrifice it in such a way that it will be accepted on your behalf. 6 It shall be eaten on the day you sacrifice it or on the next day; anything left over until the third day must be burned up. 7 If any of it is eaten on the third day, it is impure and will not be accepted. 8 Whoever eats it will be held responsible because he has desecrated what is holy to the LORD; that person must be cut off from his people.
 9 " 'When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. 10 Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God.
 11 " 'Do not steal.
      " 'Do not lie.
      " 'Do not deceive one another.
 12 " 'Do not swear falsely by my name and so profane the name of your God. I am the LORD.
 13 " 'Do not defraud your neighbor or rob him.
      " 'Do not hold back the wages of a hired man overnight.
 14 " 'Do not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block in front of the blind, but fear your God. I am the LORD.
 15 " 'Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly.
 16 " 'Do not go about spreading slander among your people.
      " 'Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor's life. I am the LORD.
 17 " 'Do not hate your brother in your heart. Rebuke your neighbor frankly so you will not share in his guilt.
 18 " 'Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD.
 19 " 'Keep my decrees.
      " 'Do not mate different kinds of animals.
      " 'Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed.
      " 'Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.
 20 " 'If a man sleeps with a woman who is a slave girl promised to another man but who has not been ransomed or given her freedom, there must be due punishment. Yet they are not to be put to death, because she had not been freed. 21 The man, however, must bring a ram to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting for a guilt offering to the LORD. 22 With the ram of the guilt offering the priest is to make atonement for him before the LORD for the sin he has committed, and his sin will be forgiven.
 23 " 'When you enter the land and plant any kind of fruit tree, regard its fruit as forbidden.  For three years you are to consider it forbidden ; it must not be eaten. 24 In the fourth year all its fruit will be holy, an offering of praise to the LORD. 25 But in the fifth year you may eat its fruit. In this way your harvest will be increased. I am the LORD your God.
 26 " 'Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it.
      " 'Do not practice divination or sorcery.
 27 " 'Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard.
 28 " 'Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD.
 29 " 'Do not degrade your daughter by making her a prostitute, or the land will turn to prostitution and be filled with wickedness.
 30 " 'Observe my Sabbaths and have reverence for my sanctuary. I am the LORD.
 31 " 'Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God.
 32 " 'Rise in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the LORD.
 33 " 'When an alien lives with you in your land, do not mistreat him. 34 The alien living with you must be treated as one of your native-born. Love him as yourself, for you were aliens in Egypt. I am the LORD your God.
 35 " 'Do not use dishonest standards when measuring length, weight or quantity. 36 Use honest scales and honest weights, an honest ephah and an honest hin. I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt.
 37 " 'Keep all my decrees and all my laws and follow them. I am the LORD.' "

Leviticus 20

Punishments for Sin
 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Say to the Israelites: 'Any Israelite or any alien living in Israel who gives any of his children to Molech must be put to death. The people of the community are to stone him. 3 I will set my face against that man and I will cut him off from his people; for by giving his children to Molech, he has defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name. 4 If the people of the community close their eyes when that man gives one of his children to Molech and they fail to put him to death, 5 I will set my face against that man and his family and will cut off from their people both him and all who follow him in prostituting themselves to Molech.  6 " 'I will set my face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them, and I will cut him off from his people.
 7 " 'Consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am the LORD your God. 8 Keep my decrees and follow them. I am the LORD, who makes you holy. 
 9 " 'If anyone curses his father or mother, he must be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother, and his blood will be on his own head.
 10 " 'If a man commits adultery with another man's wife—with the wife of his neighbor—both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death.
 11 " 'If a man sleeps with his father's wife, he has dishonored his father. Both the man and the woman must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
 12 " 'If a man sleeps with his daughter-in-law, both of them must be put to death. What they have done is a perversion; their blood will be on their own heads.
 13 " 'If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
 14 " 'If a man marries both a woman and her mother, it is wicked. Both he and they must be burned in the fire, so that no wickedness will be among you.
 15 " 'If a man has sexual relations with an animal, he must be put to death, and you must kill the animal.
 16 " 'If a woman approaches an animal to have sexual relations with it, kill both the woman and the animal. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
 17 " 'If a man marries his sister, the daughter of either his father or his mother, and they have sexual relations, it is a disgrace. They must be cut off before the eyes of their people. He has dishonored his sister and will be held responsible.
 18 " 'If a man lies with a woman during her monthly period and has sexual relations with her, he has exposed the source of her flow, and she has also uncovered it. Both of them must be cut off from their people.
 19 " 'Do not have sexual relations with the sister of either your mother or your father, for that would dishonor a close relative; both of you would be held responsible.
 20 " 'If a man sleeps with his aunt, he has dishonored his uncle. They will be held responsible; they will die childless.
 21 " 'If a man marries his brother's wife, it is an act of impurity; he has dishonored his brother. They will be childless.
 22 " 'Keep all my decrees and laws and follow them, so that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out. 23 You must not live according to the customs of the nations I am going to drive out before you. Because they did all these things, I abhorred them. 24 But I said to you, "You will possess their land; I will give it to you as an inheritance, a land flowing with milk and honey." I am the LORD your God, who has set you apart from the nations.
 25 " 'You must therefore make a distinction between clean and unclean animals and between unclean and clean birds. Do not defile yourselves by any animal or bird or anything that moves along the ground—those which I have set apart as unclean for you. 26 You are to be holy to me [c] because I, the LORD, am holy, and I have set you apart from the nations to be my own.
 27 " 'A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads.' "

 Amos  9

 7 "Are not you Israelites
       the same to me as the Cushites ?"
       declares the LORD .
       "Did I not bring Israel up from Egypt,
       the Philistines from Caphtor
       and the Arameans from Kir?

 8 "Surely the eyes of the Sovereign LORD
       are on the sinful kingdom.
       I will destroy it
       from the face of the earth—
       yet I will not totally destroy
       the house of Jacob,"
       declares the LORD.
 9 "For I will give the command,
       and I will shake the house of Israel
       among all the nations
       as grain is shaken in a sieve,
       and not a pebble will reach the ground.
 10 All the sinners among my people
       will die by the sword,
       all those who say,
       'Disaster will not overtake or meet us.'
Israel's Restoration
 11 "In that day I will restore
       David's fallen tent.
       I will repair its broken places,
       restore its ruins,
       and build it as it used to be,  12 so that they may possess the remnant of Edom
       and all the nations that bear my name, "
       declares the LORD, who will do these things.
 13 "The days are coming," declares the LORD,
       "when the reaper will be overtaken by the plowman
       and the planter by the one treading grapes.
       New wine will drip from the mountains
       and flow from all the hills.
 14 I will bring back my exiled people Israel;
       they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them.
       They will plant vineyards and drink their wine;
       they will make gardens and eat their fruit.
 15 I will plant Israel in their own land,
       never again to be uprooted
       from the land I have given them,"
       says the LORD your God.

 Ezekiel 20

2 Then the word of the LORD came to me: 3 "Son of man, speak to the elders of Israel and say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Have you come to inquire of me? As surely as I live, I will not let you inquire of me, declares the Sovereign LORD.'
 4 "Will you judge them? Will you judge them, son of man? Then confront them with the detestable practices of their fathers 5 and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: On the day I chose Israel, I swore with uplifted hand to the descendants of the house of Jacob and revealed myself to them in Egypt. With uplifted hand I said to them, "I am the LORD your God." 6 On that day I swore to them that I would bring them out of Egypt into a land I had searched out for them, a land flowing with milk and honey, the most beautiful of all lands. 7 And I said to them, "Each of you, get rid of the vile images you have set your eyes on, and do not defile yourselves with the idols of Egypt. I am the LORD your God."
 8 " 'But they rebelled against me and would not listen to me; they did not get rid of the vile images they had set their eyes on, nor did they forsake the idols of Egypt. So I said I would pour out my wrath on them and spend my anger against them in Egypt. 9 But for the sake of my name I did what would keep it from being profaned in the eyes of the nations they lived among and in whose sight I had revealed myself to the Israelites by bringing them out of Egypt. 10 Therefore I led them out of Egypt and brought them into the desert. 11 I gave them my decrees and made known to them my laws, for the man who obeys them will live by them. 12 Also I gave them my Sabbaths as a sign between us, so they would know that I the LORD made them holy.
 13 " 'Yet the people of Israel rebelled against me in the desert. They did not follow my decrees but rejected my laws—although the man who obeys them will live by them—and they utterly desecrated my Sabbaths. So I said I would pour out my wrath on them and destroy them in the desert. 14 But for the sake of my name I did what would keep it from being profaned in the eyes of the nations in whose sight I had brought them out. 15 Also with uplifted hand I swore to them in the desert that I would not bring them into the land I had given them—a land flowing with milk and honey, most beautiful of all lands- 16 because they rejected my laws and did not follow my decrees and desecrated my Sabbaths. For their hearts were devoted to their idols. 17 Yet I looked on them with pity and did not destroy them or put an end to them in the desert. 18 I said to their children in the desert, "Do not follow the statutes of your fathers or keep their laws or defile yourselves with their idols. 19 I am the LORD your God; follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. 20 Keep my Sabbaths holy, that they may be a sign between us. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God."

Matthew 5
 33"Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not break your oath, but keep the oaths you have made to the Lord.' 34But I tell you, Do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God's throne; 35or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. 36And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. 37Simply let your 'Yes' be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' 'No'; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

Love for Enemies
 43"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Matthew 15

Clean and Unclean
 1Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, 2"Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don't wash their hands before they eat!"  3Jesus replied, "And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition? 4For God said, 'Honor your father and mother' and 'Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.' 5But you say that if a man says to his father or mother, 'Whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is a gift devoted to God,' 6he is not to 'honor his father' with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition. 7You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you:
 8" 'These people honor me with their lips,
      but their hearts are far from me.
 9They worship me in vain;
      their teachings are but rules taught by men.'"
 10Jesus called the crowd to him and said, "Listen and understand. 11What goes into a man's mouth does not make him 'unclean,' but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him 'unclean.' "

 Matthew 19
The Rich Young Man
 16Now a man came up to Jesus and asked, "Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?"  17"Why do you ask me about what is good?" Jesus replied. "There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, obey the commandments."
 18"Which ones?" the man inquired.
   Jesus replied, " 'Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, 19honor your father and mother,' and 'love your neighbor as yourself.'"
 20"All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?"
 21Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."
 22When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.
 23Then Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. 24Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."
 25When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, "Who then can be saved?"
 26Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."
 27Peter answered him, "We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?"
 28Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. 30But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.

Matthew 22

33When the crowds heard this, they were astonished at his teaching.
The Greatest Commandment
 34Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:  36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

Mark 7

Clean and Unclean
 1The Pharisees and some of the teachers of the law who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus and 2saw some of his disciples eating food with hands that were "unclean," that is, unwashed. 3(The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they give their hands a ceremonial washing, holding to the tradition of the elders. 4When they come from the marketplace they do not eat unless they wash. And they observe many other traditions, such as the washing of cups, pitchers and kettles.)  5So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, "Why don't your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with 'unclean' hands?"
 6He replied, "Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written:
   " 'These people honor me with their lips,
      but their hearts are far from me.
 7They worship me in vain;
      their teachings are but rules taught by men.' 8You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men."
 9And he said to them: "You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe  your own traditions! 10For Moses said, 'Honor your father and your mother,'  and, 'Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.'11But you say that if a man says to his father or mother: 'Whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is Corban' (that is, a gift devoted to God), 12then you no longer let him do anything for his father or mother. 13Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that."
 14Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, "Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. 15Nothing outside a man can make him 'unclean' by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him 'unclean.' "
 17After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. 18"Are you so dull?" he asked. "Don't you see that nothing that enters a man from the outside can make him 'unclean'? 19For it doesn't go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body." (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods "clean.")
 20He went on: "What comes out of a man is what makes him 'unclean.' 21For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23All these evils come from inside and make a man 'unclean.' "

Mark 12
The Greatest Commandment
 28One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important?"  29"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.30Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' 31The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'There is no commandment greater than these."
 32"Well said, teacher," the man replied. "You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."
 34When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.

 Luke 10
The Parable of the Good Samaritan
 25On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to inherit eternal life?"  26"What is written in the Law?" he replied. "How do you read it?"
 27He answered: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"
 28"You have answered correctly," Jesus replied. "Do this and you will live."
 29But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"
 30In reply Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. 35The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.'
 36"Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?"
 37The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him."
      Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."

Romans 13
Love, for the Day is Near
 8Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. 9The commandments, "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," "Do not covet," and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself." 10Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.  11And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

Galatians 5

13You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. 14The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself." 15If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
Life by the Spirit
 16So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. 17For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.  19The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

James 2

Favoritism Forbidden
 1My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism. 2Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. 3If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet," 4have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?  5Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? 6But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? 7Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of him to whom you belong?
 8If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right. 9But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers.

1 Peter
Be Holy
 13Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16for it is written: "Be holy, because I am holy."  17Since you call on a Father who judges each man's work impartially, live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear. 18For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Yom Kippur, Acharei Mot (After the Death)

Parashah 29:  Acharei Mot (After the Death)
Leviticus 16:1-18:30; Ezekiel 22:1-19; Romans 3:19-28, 9:30-10:13; 1 Cor. 5:1-13; 2 Cor. 2:1-11; Galatians 3:10-14; Hebrews 7:23-10:25

Leviticus 16
The Day of Atonement
 1 The LORD spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron who died when they approached the LORD. 2 The LORD said to Moses: "Tell your brother Aaron not to come whenever he chooses into the Most Holy Place behind the curtain in front of the atonement cover on the ark, or else he will die, because I appear in the cloud over the atonement cover.  3 "This is how Aaron is to enter the sanctuary area: with a young bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. 4 He is to put on the sacred linen tunic, with linen undergarments next to his body; he is to tie the linen sash around him and put on the linen turban. These are sacred garments; so he must bathe himself with water before he puts them on. 5 From the Israelite community he is to take two male goats for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.
 6 "Aaron is to offer the bull for his own sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household. 7 Then he is to take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. 8 He is to cast lots for the two goats—one lot for the LORD and the other for the scapegoat.  9 Aaron shall bring the goat whose lot falls to the LORD and sacrifice it for a sin offering. 10 But the goat chosen by lot as the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the LORD to be used for making atonement by sending it into the desert as a scapegoat.
 11 "Aaron shall bring the bull for his own sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household, and he is to slaughter the bull for his own sin offering. 12 He is to take a censer full of burning coals from the altar before the LORD and two handfuls of finely ground fragrant incense and take them behind the curtain. 13 He is to put the incense on the fire before the LORD, and the smoke of the incense will conceal the atonement cover above the Testimony, so that he will not die. 14 He is to take some of the bull's blood and with his finger sprinkle it on the front of the atonement cover; then he shall sprinkle some of it with his finger seven times before the atonement cover.
 15 "He shall then slaughter the goat for the sin offering for the people and take its blood behind the curtain and do with it as he did with the bull's blood: He shall sprinkle it on the atonement cover and in front of it. 16 In this way he will make atonement for the Most Holy Place because of the uncleanness and rebellion of the Israelites, whatever their sins have been. He is to do the same for the Tent of Meeting, which is among them in the midst of their uncleanness. 17 No one is to be in the Tent of Meeting from the time Aaron goes in to make atonement in the Most Holy Place until he comes out, having made atonement for himself, his household and the whole community of Israel.
 18 "Then he shall come out to the altar that is before the LORD and make atonement for it. He shall take some of the bull's blood and some of the goat's blood and put it on all the horns of the altar. 19 He shall sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times to cleanse it and to consecrate it from the uncleanness of the Israelites.
 20 "When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the Tent of Meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat. 21 He is to lay both hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites—all their sins—and put them on the goat's head. He shall send the goat away into the desert in the care of a man appointed for the task. 22 The goat will carry on itself all their sins to a solitary place; and the man shall release it in the desert.
 23 "Then Aaron is to go into the Tent of Meeting and take off the linen garments he put on before he entered the Most Holy Place, and he is to leave them there. 24 He shall bathe himself with water in a holy place and put on his regular garments. Then he shall come out and sacrifice the burnt offering for himself and the burnt offering for the people, to make atonement for himself and for the people. 25 He shall also burn the fat of the sin offering on the altar.
 26 "The man who releases the goat as a scapegoat must wash his clothes and bathe himself with water; afterward he may come into the camp. 27 The bull and the goat for the sin offerings, whose blood was brought into the Most Holy Place to make atonement, must be taken outside the camp; their hides, flesh and offal are to be burned up. 28 The man who burns them must wash his clothes and bathe himself with water; afterward he may come into the camp.
 29 "This is to be a lasting ordinance for you: On the tenth day of the seventh month you must deny yourselves  and not do any work—whether native-born or an alien living among you- 30 because on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the LORD, you will be clean from all your sins. 31 It is a sabbath of rest, and you must deny yourselves; it is a lasting ordinance. 32 The priest who is anointed and ordained to succeed his father as high priest is to make atonement. He is to put on the sacred linen garments 33 and make atonement for the Most Holy Place, for the Tent of Meeting and the altar, and for the priests and all the people of the community.
 34 "This is to be a lasting ordinance for you: Atonement is to be made once a year for all the sins of the Israelites."
      And it was done, as the LORD commanded Moses.

Leviticus 17

Eating Blood Forbidden
 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Speak to Aaron and his sons and to all the Israelites and say to them: 'This is what the LORD has commanded: 3 Any Israelite who sacrifices an ox,  a lamb or a goat in the camp or outside of it 4 instead of bringing it to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting to present it as an offering to the LORD in front of the tabernacle of the LORD -that man shall be considered guilty of bloodshed; he has shed blood and must be cut off from his people. 5 This is so the Israelites will bring to the LORD the sacrifices they are now making in the open fields. They must bring them to the priest, that is, to the LORD, at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting and sacrifice them as fellowship offerings. 6 The priest is to sprinkle the blood against the altar of the LORD at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting and burn the fat as an aroma pleasing to the LORD. 7 They must no longer offer any of their sacrifices to the goat idols  to whom they prostitute themselves. This is to be a lasting ordinance for them and for the generations to come.'  8 "Say to them: 'Any Israelite or any alien living among them who offers a burnt offering or sacrifice 9 and does not bring it to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting to sacrifice it to the LORD -that man must be cut off from his people.
 10 " 'Any Israelite or any alien living among them who eats any blood—I will set my face against that person who eats blood and will cut him off from his people. 11 For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one's life. 12 Therefore I say to the Israelites, "None of you may eat blood, nor may an alien living among you eat blood."
 13 " 'Any Israelite or any alien living among you who hunts any animal or bird that may be eaten must drain out the blood and cover it with earth, 14 because the life of every creature is its blood. That is why I have said to the Israelites, "You must not eat the blood of any creature, because the life of every creature is its blood; anyone who eats it must be cut off."
 15 " 'Anyone, whether native-born or alien, who eats anything found dead or torn by wild animals must wash his clothes and bathe with water, and he will be ceremonially unclean till evening; then he will be clean. 16 But if he does not wash his clothes and bathe himself, he will be held responsible.' "

Leviticus 18

Unlawful Sexual Relations
 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'I am the LORD your God. 3 You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices. 4 You must obey my laws and be careful to follow my decrees. I am the LORD your God. 5 Keep my decrees and laws, for the man who obeys them will live by them. I am the LORD.  6 " 'No one is to approach any close relative to have sexual relations. I am the LORD.
 7 " 'Do not dishonor your father by having sexual relations with your mother. She is your mother; do not have relations with her.
 8 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your father's wife; that would dishonor your father.
 9 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your sister, either your father's daughter or your mother's daughter, whether she was born in the same home or elsewhere.
 10 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your son's daughter or your daughter's daughter; that would dishonor you.
 11 " 'Do not have sexual relations with the daughter of your father's wife, born to your father; she is your sister.
 12 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your father's sister; she is your father's close relative.
 13 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your mother's sister, because she is your mother's close relative.
 14 " 'Do not dishonor your father's brother by approaching his wife to have sexual relations; she is your aunt.
 15 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your daughter-in-law. She is your son's wife; do not have relations with her.
 16 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your brother's wife; that would dishonor your brother.
 17 " 'Do not have sexual relations with both a woman and her daughter. Do not have sexual relations with either her son's daughter or her daughter's daughter; they are her close relatives. That is wickedness.
 18 " 'Do not take your wife's sister as a rival wife and have sexual relations with her while your wife is living.
 19 " 'Do not approach a woman to have sexual relations during the uncleanness of her monthly period.
 20 " 'Do not have sexual relations with your neighbor's wife and defile yourself with her.
 21 " 'Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed  to Molech, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the LORD.
 22 " 'Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
 23 " 'Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion.
 24 " 'Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled. 25 Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. 26 But you must keep my decrees and my laws. The native-born and the aliens living among you must not do any of these detestable things, 27 for all these things were done by the people who lived in the land before you, and the land became defiled. 28 And if you defile the land, it will vomit you out as it vomited out the nations that were before you.
 29 " 'Everyone who does any of these detestable things—such persons must be cut off from their people. 30 Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the LORD your God.' "

Ezekiel 22

Jerusalem's Sins
 1 The word of the LORD came to me: 2 "Son of man, will you judge her? Will you judge this city of bloodshed? Then confront her with all her detestable practices 3 and say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O city that brings on herself doom by shedding blood in her midst and defiles herself by making idols, 4 you have become guilty because of the blood you have shed and have become defiled by the idols you have made. You have brought your days to a close, and the end of your years has come. Therefore I will make you an object of scorn to the nations and a laughingstock to all the countries. 5 Those who are near and those who are far away will mock you, O infamous city, full of turmoil.  6 " 'See how each of the princes of Israel who are in you uses his power to shed blood. 7 In you they have treated father and mother with contempt; in you they have oppressed the alien and mistreated the fatherless and the widow. 8 You have despised my holy things and desecrated my Sabbaths. 9 In you are slanderous men bent on shedding blood; in you are those who eat at the mountain shrines and commit lewd acts. 10 In you are those who dishonor their fathers' bed; in you are those who violate women during their period, when they are ceremonially unclean. 11 In you one man commits a detestable offense with his neighbor's wife, another shamefully defiles his daughter-in-law, and another violates his sister, his own father's daughter. 12 In you men accept bribes to shed blood; you take usury and excessive interest and make unjust gain from your neighbors by extortion. And you have forgotten me, declares the Sovereign LORD.
 13 " 'I will surely strike my hands together at the unjust gain you have made and at the blood you have shed in your midst. 14 Will your courage endure or your hands be strong in the day I deal with you? I the LORD have spoken, and I will do it. 15 I will disperse you among the nations and scatter you through the countries; and I will put an end to your uncleanness. 16 When you have been defiled  in the eyes of the nations, you will know that I am the LORD.' "
 17 Then the word of the LORD came to me: 18 "Son of man, the house of Israel has become dross to me; all of them are the copper, tin, iron and lead left inside a furnace. They are but the dross of silver. 19 Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: 'Because you have all become dross, I will gather you into Jerusalem

Romans 3

 19Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.
Righteousness Through Faith
 21But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.  27Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith. 28For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law.

Romans 9
Israel's Unbelief

 30What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; 31but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it. 32Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the "stumbling stone." 33As it is written:
   "See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes men to stumble
      and a rock that makes them fall,
   and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame."

Romans 10

 1Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. 2For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. 3Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. 4Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.
 5Moses describes in this way the righteousness that is by the law: "The man who does these things will live by them." 6But the righteousness that is by faith says: "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" (that is, to bring Christ down) 7"or 'Who will descend into the deep?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). 8But what does it say? "The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart," that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: 9That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. 11As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame." 12For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."

1 Corinthians 5

Expel the Immoral Brother!
 1It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that does not occur even among pagans: A man has his father's wife. 2And you are proud! Shouldn't you rather have been filled with grief and have put out of your fellowship the man who did this? 3Even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. And I have already passed judgment on the one who did this, just as if I were present. 4When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, 5hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.  6Your boasting is not good. Don't you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough? 7Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast—as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with bread without yeast, the bread of sincerity and truth.
 9I have written you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. 11But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.
 12What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13God will judge those outside. "Expel the wicked man from among you."

2 Corinthians 2

 1So I made up my mind that I would not make another painful visit to you. 2For if I grieve you, who is left to make me glad but you whom I have grieved? 3I wrote as I did so that when I came I should not be distressed by those who ought to make me rejoice. I had confidence in all of you, that you would all share my joy. 4For I wrote you out of great distress and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to grieve you but to let you know the depth of my love for you.
Forgiveness for the Sinner
 5If anyone has caused grief, he has not so much grieved me as he has grieved all of you, to some extent—not to put it too severely. 6The punishment inflicted on him by the majority is sufficient for him. 7Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. 8I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him. 9The reason I wrote you was to see if you would stand the test and be obedient in everything. 10If you forgive anyone, I also forgive him. And what I have forgiven—if there was anything to forgive—I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake, 11in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes.
Galatians 3

 10All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law."11Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, "The righteous will live by faith." 12The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, "The man who does these things will live by them." 13Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." 14He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.
Hebrews 7
23Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.  26Such a high priest meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 27Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. 28For the law appoints as high priests men who are weak; but the oath, which came after the law, appointed the Son, who has been made perfect forever.

Hebrews 8

The High Priest of a New Covenant
 1The point of what we are saying is this: We do have such a high priest, who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, 2and who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle set up by the Lord, not by man.  3Every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices, and so it was necessary for this one also to have something to offer. 4If he were on earth, he would not be a priest, for there are already men who offer the gifts prescribed by the law. 5They serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: "See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain." 6But the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, and it is founded on better promises.
 7For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another. 8But God found fault with the people and said:
   "The time is coming, declares the Lord,
      when I will make a new covenant
   with the house of Israel
      and with the house of Judah.
 9It will not be like the covenant
      I made with their forefathers
   when I took them by the hand
      to lead them out of Egypt,
   because they did not remain faithful to my covenant,
      and I turned away from them, declares the Lord.
 10This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel
      after that time, declares the Lord.
   I will put my laws in their minds
      and write them on their hearts.
   I will be their God,
      and they will be my people.
 11No longer will a man teach his neighbor,
      or a man his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,'
   because they will all know me,
      from the least of them to the greatest.
 12For I will forgive their wickedness
      and will remember their sins no more."
 13By calling this covenant "new," he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear.

Hebrews 9

Worship in the Earthly Tabernacle
 1Now the first covenant had regulations for worship and also an earthly sanctuary. 2A tabernacle was set up. In its first room were the lampstand, the table and the consecrated bread; this was called the Holy Place. 3Behind the second curtain was a room called the Most Holy Place, 4which had the golden altar of incense and the gold-covered ark of the covenant. This ark contained the gold jar of manna, Aaron's staff that had budded, and the stone tablets of the covenant. 5Above the ark were the cherubim of the Glory, overshadowing the atonement cover. But we cannot discuss these things in detail now.  6When everything had been arranged like this, the priests entered regularly into the outer room to carry on their ministry. 7But only the high priest entered the inner room, and that only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered for himself and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance. 8The Holy Spirit was showing by this that the way into the Most Holy Place had not yet been disclosed as long as the first tabernacle was still standing. 9This is an illustration for the present time, indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the conscience of the worshiper. 10They are only a matter of food and drink and various ceremonial washings—external regulations applying until the time of the new order.
The Blood of Christ
 11When Christ came as high priest of the good things that are already here,he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not man-made, that is to say, not a part of this creation. 12He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. 13The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. 14How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!  15For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance—now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.
 16In the case of a will, it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, 17because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. 18This is why even the first covenant was not put into effect without blood. 19When Moses had proclaimed every commandment of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20He said, "This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep." 21In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. 22In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
 23It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24For Christ did not enter a man-made sanctuary that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God's presence. 25Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26Then Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.

Hebrews 10

Christ's Sacrifice Once for All
 1The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. 2If it could, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins. 3But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins, 4because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.  5Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said:
   "Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
      but a body you prepared for me;
 6with burnt offerings and sin offerings
      you were not pleased.
 7Then I said, 'Here I am—it is written about me in the scroll—
      I have come to do your will, O God.' "  8First he said, "Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them" (although the law required them to be made). 9Then he said, "Here I am, I have come to do your will." He sets aside the first to establish the second. 10And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
 11Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. 13Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, 14because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.
 15The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says:
 16"This is the covenant I will make with them
      after that time, says the Lord.
   I will put my laws in their hearts,
      and I will write them on their minds."17Then he adds:
   "Their sins and lawless acts
      I will remember no more." 18And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin. 19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

HA'AZINU (give ear!)

HA'AZINU (give ear!)

Dt. 32:1-52, 2Sam. 22:1-51, Rom. 10:14-21; 12:14-21; Hebrews 12:28-29

Deuteronomy 32

 1 Listen, O heavens, and I will speak;
       hear, O earth, the words of my mouth.
 2 Let my teaching fall like rain
       and my words descend like dew,
       like showers on new grass,
       like abundant rain on tender plants.
 3 I will proclaim the name of the LORD.
       Oh, praise the greatness of our God!
 4 He is the Rock, his works are perfect,
       and all his ways are just.
       A faithful God who does no wrong,
       upright and just is he.
 5 They have acted corruptly toward him;
       to their shame they are no longer his children,
       but a warped and crooked generation. 
 6 Is this the way you repay the LORD,
       O foolish and unwise people?
       Is he not your Father, your Creator,
       who made you and formed you?
 7 Remember the days of old;
       consider the generations long past.
       Ask your father and he will tell you,
       your elders, and they will explain to you.
 8 When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance,
       when he divided all mankind,
       he set up boundaries for the peoples
       according to the number of the sons of Israel. 
 9 For the LORD's portion is his people,
       Jacob his allotted inheritance.
 10 In a desert land he found him,
       in a barren and howling waste.
       He shielded him and cared for him;
       he guarded him as the apple of his eye,
 11 like an eagle that stirs up its nest
       and hovers over its young,
       that spreads its wings to catch them
       and carries them on its pinions.
 12 The LORD alone led him;
       no foreign god was with him.
 13 He made him ride on the heights of the land
       and fed him with the fruit of the fields.
       He nourished him with honey from the rock,
       and with oil from the flinty crag,
 14 with curds and milk from herd and flock
       and with fattened lambs and goats,
       with choice rams of Bashan
       and the finest kernels of wheat.
       You drank the foaming blood of the grape.
 15 Jeshurun  grew fat and kicked;
       filled with food, he became heavy and sleek.
       He abandoned the God who made him
       and rejected the Rock his Savior.
 16 They made him jealous with their foreign gods
       and angered him with their detestable idols.
 17 They sacrificed to demons, which are not God—
       gods they had not known,
       gods that recently appeared,
       gods your fathers did not fear.
 18 You deserted the Rock, who fathered you;
       you forgot the God who gave you birth.
 19 The LORD saw this and rejected them
       because he was angered by his sons and daughters.
 20 "I will hide my face from them," he said,
       "and see what their end will be;
       for they are a perverse generation,
       children who are unfaithful.
 21 They made me jealous by what is no god
       and angered me with their worthless idols.
       I will make them envious by those who are not a people;
       I will make them angry by a nation that has no understanding.
 22 For a fire has been kindled by my wrath,
       one that burns to the realm of death  below.
       It will devour the earth and its harvests
       and set afire the foundations of the mountains.
 23 "I will heap calamities upon them
       and spend my arrows against them.
 24 I will send wasting famine against them,
       consuming pestilence and deadly plague;
       I will send against them the fangs of wild beasts,
       the venom of vipers that glide in the dust.
 25 In the street the sword will make them childless;
       in their homes terror will reign.
       Young men and young women will perish,
       infants and gray-haired men.
 26 I said I would scatter them
       and blot out their memory from mankind,
 27 but I dreaded the taunt of the enemy,
       lest the adversary misunderstand
       and say, 'Our hand has triumphed;
       the LORD has not done all this.' "
 28 They are a nation without sense,
       there is no discernment in them.
 29 If only they were wise and would understand this
       and discern what their end will be!
 30 How could one man chase a thousand,
       or two put ten thousand to flight,
       unless their Rock had sold them,
       unless the LORD had given them up?
 31 For their rock is not like our Rock,
       as even our enemies concede.
 32 Their vine comes from the vine of Sodom
       and from the fields of Gomorrah.
       Their grapes are filled with poison,
       and their clusters with bitterness.
 33 Their wine is the venom of serpents,
       the deadly poison of cobras.
 34 "Have I not kept this in reserve
       and sealed it in my vaults?
 35 It is mine to avenge; I will repay.
       In due time their foot will slip;
       their day of disaster is near
       and their doom rushes upon them."
 36 The LORD will judge his people
       and have compassion on his servants
       when he sees their strength is gone
       and no one is left, slave or free.
 37 He will say: "Now where are their gods,
       the rock they took refuge in,
 38 the gods who ate the fat of their sacrifices
       and drank the wine of their drink offerings?
       Let them rise up to help you!
       Let them give you shelter!
 39 "See now that I myself am He!
       There is no god besides me.
       I put to death and I bring to life,
       I have wounded and I will heal,
       and no one can deliver out of my hand.
 40 I lift my hand to heaven and declare:
       As surely as I live forever,
 41 when I sharpen my flashing sword
       and my hand grasps it in judgment,
       I will take vengeance on my adversaries
       and repay those who hate me.
 42 I will make my arrows drunk with blood,
       while my sword devours flesh:
       the blood of the slain and the captives,
       the heads of the enemy leaders."
 43 Rejoice, O nations, with his people,
       for he will avenge the blood of his servants;
       he will take vengeance on his enemies
       and make atonement for his land and people.
 44 Moses came with Joshua  son of Nun and spoke all the words of this song in the hearing of the people. 45 When Moses finished reciting all these words to all Israel, 46 he said to them, "Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law. 47 They are not just idle words for you—they are your life. By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess."
Moses to Die on Mount Nebo
 48 On that same day the LORD told Moses, 49 "Go up into the Abarim Range to Mount Nebo in Moab, across from Jericho, and view Canaan, the land I am giving the Israelites as their own possession. 50 There on the mountain that you have climbed you will die and be gathered to your people, just as your brother Aaron died on Mount Hor and was gathered to his people. 51 This is because both of you broke faith with me in the presence of the Israelites at the waters of Meribah Kadesh in the Desert of Zin and because you did not uphold my holiness among the Israelites. 52 Therefore, you will see the land only from a distance; you will not enter the land I am giving to the people of Israel."

2 Samuel 22

David's Song of Praise
 1 David sang to the LORD the words of this song when the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. 2 He said:
       "The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;  3 my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
       my shield and the horn  of my salvation.
       He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior—
       from violent men you save me.
 4 I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise,
       and I am saved from my enemies.
 5 "The waves of death swirled about me;
       the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
 6 The cords of the grave coiled around me;
       the snares of death confronted me.
 7 In my distress I called to the LORD;
       I called out to my God.
       From his temple he heard my voice;
       my cry came to his ears.
 8 "The earth trembled and quaked,
       the foundations of the heavens  shook;
       they trembled because he was angry.
 9 Smoke rose from his nostrils;
       consuming fire came from his mouth,
       burning coals blazed out of it.
 10 He parted the heavens and came down;
       dark clouds were under his feet.
 11 He mounted the cherubim and flew;
       he soared on the wings of the wind.
 12 He made darkness his canopy around him—
       the dark  rain clouds of the sky.
 13 Out of the brightness of his presence
       bolts of lightning blazed forth.
 14 The LORD thundered from heaven;
       the voice of the Most High resounded.
 15 He shot arrows and scattered the enemies ,
       bolts of lightning and routed them.
 16 The valleys of the sea were exposed
       and the foundations of the earth laid bare
       at the rebuke of the LORD,
       at the blast of breath from his nostrils.
 17 "He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
       he drew me out of deep waters.
 18 He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
       from my foes, who were too strong for me.
 19 They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
       but the LORD was my support.
 20 He brought me out into a spacious place;
       he rescued me because he delighted in me.
 21 "The LORD has dealt with me according to my righteousness;
       according to the cleanness of my hands he has rewarded me.
 22 For I have kept the ways of the LORD;
       I have not done evil by turning from my God.
 23 All his laws are before me;
       I have not turned away from his decrees.
 24 I have been blameless before him
       and have kept myself from sin.
 25 The LORD has rewarded me according to my righteousness,
       according to my cleanness in his sight.
 26 "To the faithful you show yourself faithful,
       to the blameless you show yourself blameless,
 27 to the pure you show yourself pure,
       but to the crooked you show yourself shrewd.
 28 You save the humble,
       but your eyes are on the haughty to bring them low.
 29 You are my lamp, O LORD;
       the LORD turns my darkness into light.
 30 With your help I can advance against a troop ;
       with my God I can scale a wall.
 31 "As for God, his way is perfect;
       the word of the LORD is flawless.
       He is a shield
       for all who take refuge in him.
 32 For who is God besides the LORD ?
       And who is the Rock except our God?
 33 It is God who arms me with strength
       and makes my way perfect.
 34 He makes my feet like the feet of a deer;
       he enables me to stand on the heights.
 35 He trains my hands for battle;
       my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
 36 You give me your shield of victory;
       you stoop down to make me great.
 37 You broaden the path beneath me,
       so that my ankles do not turn.
 38 "I pursued my enemies and crushed them;
       I did not turn back till they were destroyed.
 39 I crushed them completely, and they could not rise;
       they fell beneath my feet.
 40 You armed me with strength for battle;
       you made my adversaries bow at my feet.
 41 You made my enemies turn their backs in flight,
       and I destroyed my foes.
 42 They cried for help, but there was no one to save them—
       to the LORD, but he did not answer.
 43 I beat them as fine as the dust of the earth;
       I pounded and trampled them like mud in the streets.
 44 "You have delivered me from the attacks of my people;
       you have preserved me as the head of nations.
       People I did not know are subject to me,
 45 and foreigners come cringing to me;
       as soon as they hear me, they obey me.
 46 They all lose heart;
       they come trembling from their strongholds.
 47 "The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock!
       Exalted be God, the Rock, my Savior!
 48 He is the God who avenges me,
       who puts the nations under me,
 49 who sets me free from my enemies.
       You exalted me above my foes;
       from violent men you rescued me.
 50 Therefore I will praise you, O LORD, among the nations;
       I will sing praises to your name.
 51 He gives his king great victories;
       he shows unfailing kindness to his anointed,
       to David and his descendants forever."

Romans 10

 14How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"
 16But not all the Israelites accepted the good news. For Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our message?"  17Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ. 18But I ask: Did they not hear? Of course they did:
   "Their voice has gone out into all the earth,
      their words to the ends of the world."  19Again I ask: Did Israel not understand? First, Moses says,
   "I will make you envious by those who are not a nation;
      I will make you angry by a nation that has no understanding."  20And Isaiah boldly says,
   "I was found by those who did not seek me;
      I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me."  21But concerning Israel he says,
   "All day long I have held out my hands
      to a disobedient and obstinate people."

Romans 12

 14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.  Do not be conceited.
 17Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay,"  says the Lord. 20On the contrary:
   "If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
      if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
   In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Hebrews 12

 28Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29for our "God is a consuming fire."