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Daily Readings for December 8
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1."My soul is weary of my life. I will give free course to my complaint. I will speak in the bitterness of my soul. 2.I will tell God, 'Do not condemn me. Show me why you contend with me. 3.Is it good to you that you should oppress, that you should despise the work of your hands, and smile on the counsel of the wicked? 4.Do you have eyes of flesh? Or do you see as man sees? 5.Are your days as the days of mortals, or your years as man's years, 6.that you inquire after my iniquity, and search after my sin? 7.Although you know that I am not wicked, there is no one who can deliver out of your hand.
8."'Your hands have framed me and fashioned me altogether, yet you destroy me. 9.Remember, I beg you, that you have fashioned me as clay. Will you bring me into dust again? 10.Haven't you poured me out like milk, and curdled me like cheese? 11.You have clothed me with skin and flesh, and knit me together with bones and sinews. 12.You have granted me life and loving kindness. Your visitation has preserved my spirit. 13.Yet you hid these things in your heart. I know that this is with you: 14.if I sin, then you mark me. You will not acquit me from my iniquity. 15.If I am wicked, woe to me. If I am righteous, I still shall not lift up my head, being filled with disgrace, and conscious of my affliction. 16.If my head is held high, you hunt me like a lion. Again you show yourself powerful to me. 17.You renew your witnesses against me, and increase your indignation on me. Changes and warfare are with me.
18."'Why, then, have you brought me forth out of the womb? I wish I had given up the spirit, and no eye had seen me. 19.I should have been as though I had not been. I should have been carried from the womb to the grave. 20.Aren't my days few? Cease then. Leave me alone, that I may find a little comfort, 21.before I go where I shall not return from, to the land of darkness and of the shadow of death; 22.the land dark as midnight, of the shadow of death, without any order, where the light is as midnight.'"
1.Listen now to what Yahweh says: "Arise, plead your case before the mountains, and let the hills hear what you have to say. 2.Hear, you mountains, Yahweh's controversy, and you enduring foundations of the earth; for Yahweh has a controversy with his people, and he will contend with Israel. 3.My people, what have I done to you? How have I burdened you? Answer me! 4.For I brought you up out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage. I sent before you Moses, Aaron, and Miriam. 5.My people, remember now what Balak king of Moab devised, and what Balaam the son of Beor answered him from Shittim to Gilgal, that you may know the righteous acts of Yahweh."
6.How shall I come before Yahweh, and bow myself before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? 7.Will Yahweh be pleased with thousands of rams? With tens of thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my disobedience? The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? 8.He has shown you, O man, what is good. What does Yahweh require of you, but to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?
9.Yahweh's voice calls to the city, and wisdom sees your name: "Listen to the rod, and he who appointed it. 10.Are there yet treasures of wickedness in the house of the wicked, and a short ephah5 that is accursed? 11.Shall I be pure with dishonest scales, and with a bag of deceitful weights? 12.Her rich men are full of violence, her inhabitants speak lies, and their tongue is deceitful in their speech. 13.Therefore I also have struck you with a grievous wound. I have made you desolate because of your sins. 14.You shall eat, but not be satisfied. Your humiliation will be in your midst. You will store up, but not save; and that which you save I will give up to the sword. 15.You will sow, but won't reap. You will tread the olives, but won't anoint yourself with oil; and crush grapes, but won't drink the wine. 16.For the statutes of Omri are kept, and all the works of the house of Ahab. You walk in their counsels, that I may make you a ruin, and her inhabitants a hissing; And you will bear the reproach of my people."
1.My brothers, don't hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ of glory with partiality. 2.For if a man with a gold ring, in fine clothing, comes into your synagogue3, and a poor man in filthy clothing also comes in; 3.and you pay special attention to him who wears the fine clothing, and say, "Sit here in a good place;" and you tell the poor man, "Stand there," or "Sit by my footstool;" 4.haven't you shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? 5.Listen, my beloved brothers. Didn't God choose those who are poor in this world to be rich in faith, and heirs of the Kingdom which he promised to those who love him? 6.But you have dishonored the poor man. Don't the rich oppress you, and personally drag you before the courts? 7.Don't they blaspheme the honorable name by which you are called? 8.However, if you fulfill the royal law, according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself,"4 you do well. 9.But if you show partiality, you commit sin, being convicted by the law as transgressors. 10.For whoever keeps the whole law, and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all. 11.For he who said, "Do not commit adultery,"5 also said, "Do not commit murder."6 Now if you do not commit adultery, but murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. 12.So speak, and so do, as men who are to be judged by a law of freedom. 13.For judgment is without mercy to him who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
14.What good is it, my brothers, if a man says he has faith, but has no works? Can faith save him? 15.And if a brother or sister is naked and in lack of daily food, 16.and one of you tells them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled;" and yet you didn't give them the things the body needs, what good is it? 17.Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead in itself. 18.Yes, a man will say, "You have faith, and I have works." Show me your faith without works, and I by my works will show you my faith.
19.You believe that God is one. You do well. The demons also believe, and shudder. 20.But do you want to know, vain man, that faith apart from works is dead? 21.Wasn't Abraham our father justified by works, in that he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? 22.You see that faith worked with his works, and by works faith was perfected; 23.and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him as righteousness;"7 and he was called the friend of God. 24.You see then that by works, a man is justified, and not only by faith. 25.In the same way, wasn't Rahab the prostitute also justified by works, in that she received the messengers, and sent them out another way? 26.For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, even so faith apart from works is dead.