Through the Bible – Day 182

Bible text(s)

Job continues

I am desperate

1Job said:

2I am desperate because

God All-Powerful refuses

to do what is right.

As surely as God lives,

3and while he gives me breath,

4I will tell only the truth.

5Until the day I die,

I will refuse to do wrong

by saying you are right,

6because each day my conscience

agrees that I am innocent.

7I pray that my enemies

will suffer no less

than the wicked.

8Such people are hopeless,

and God All-Powerful

will cut them down,

9without listening

when they beg for mercy.

10And that is what God should do,

because they don't like him

or ever pray.

11Now I will explain in detail

what God All-Powerful does.

12All of you have seen these things

for yourselves.

So you have no excuse.

How God treats the wicked

13Here is how God All-Powerful

treats those who are wicked

and brutal.

14They may have many children,

but most of them will go hungry

or suffer a violent death.

15Others will die of disease,

and their widows

won't be able to weep.

16The wicked may collect riches

and clothes in abundance

as easily as clay.

17But God's people will wear

clothes taken from them

and divide up their riches.

18No homes built by the wicked

will outlast a cocoon

or a shack.

19Those sinners may go to bed rich,

but they will wake up poor.

20Terror will strike at night

like a flood or a storm.

21Then a scorching wind

will sweep them away

22without showing mercy,

as they try to escape.

23At last, the wind will celebrate

because they are gone.

Job continues

Gold and silver are mined

1Gold and silver are mined,

then purified;

2the same is done

with iron and copper.

3Miners carry lanterns

deep into the darkness

to search for these metals.

4They dig tunnels

in distant, unknown places,

where they dangle by ropes.

5Far beneath the grain fields,

fires are built

to break loose those rocks

6that have jewels or gold.

7Miners go to places unseen

by the eyes of hawks;

8they walk on soil unknown

to the proudest lions.

9With their own hands

they remove sharp rocks

and uproot mountains.

10They dig through the rocks

in search of jewels

and precious metals.

11They also uncover

the sources of rivers

and discover secret places.

Where is wisdom found?

12But where is wisdom found?

13No human knows the way.

14Nor can it be discovered

in the deepest sea.

15-16It is worth much more

than silver or pure gold

or precious stones.

17Nothing is its equal—

not gold or costly glass.

18Wisdom is worth much more than

coral, jasper, or rubies.

19All the topaz of Ethiopia

and the finest gold

cannot compare with it.

20Where then is wisdom?

21It is hidden from human eyes

and even from birds.

22Death and destruction

have merely heard rumours

about where it is found.

23God is the only one who knows

the way to wisdom,

24because he sees everything

beneath the heavens.

25When God divided out

the wind and the water,

26and when he decided the path

for rain and lightning,

27he also determined the truth

and defined wisdom.

28God told us, “Wisdom means

that you respect me, the Lord,

and turn from sin.”

Job continues

I long for the past

1Job said:

2I long for the past,

when God took care of me,

3and the light from his lamp

showed me the way

through the dark.

4I was in the prime of life,

God All-Powerful

was my closest friend,

5and all my children

were nearby.

6My herds gave enough milk

to bathe my feet,

and from my olive harvest

flowed rivers of oil.

7-8When I sat down at the meeting

of the city council,

the young leaders stepped aside,

while the older ones stood

9-10and remained silent.

Everyone was pleased

11Everyone was pleased

with what I said and did.

12When poor people or orphans

cried out for help,

I came to their rescue.

13And I was highly praised

for my generosity to widows

and others in poverty.

14Kindness and justice

were my coat and hat;

15I was good to the blind

and to the lame.

16I was a father to the needy,

and I defended them in court,

even if they were strangers.

17When criminals attacked,

I broke their teeth

and set their victims free.

18I felt certain that I would live

a long and happy life,

then die in my own bed.

19In those days I was strong

like a tree with deep roots

and with plenty of water,

20or like an archer's new bow.

21Everyone listened in silence

to my welcome advice,

22and when I finished speaking,

nothing needed to be said.

23My words were eagerly accepted

like the showers of spring,

24and the smile on my face

renewed everyone's hopes.

25My advice was followed

as though I were a king

leading my troops,

or someone comforting

those in sorrow.

Job continues

Young people now insult me

1Young people now insult me,

although their fathers

would have been a disgrace

to my sheep dogs.

2And those who insult me

are helpless themselves.

3They must claw the desert sand

in the dark for something

to satisfy their hunger.

4They gather tasteless shrubs

for food and firewood,

5and they are driven out of towns,

as though they were thieves.

6Their only homes are ditches

or holes between rocks,

7where they bray like donkeys

gathering around shrubs.

8And like senseless donkeys

they are chased away.

Those worthless nobodies

9Those worthless nobodies

make up jokes and songs

to disgrace me.

10They are hateful

and keep their distance,

even while spitting

in my direction.

11God has destroyed me,

and so they don't care

what they do.

12Their attacks never stop,

though I am defenceless,

and my feet are trapped.

13Without any help,

they prevent my escape,

destroying me completely

14and leaving me crushed.

15Terror has me surrounded;

my reputation and my riches

have vanished like a cloud.

I am sick at heart

16I am sick at heart!

Pain has taken its toll.

17Night chews on my bones,

causing endless torment,

18and God has shrunk my skin,

choking me to death.

19I have been thrown in the dirt

and now am dirt myself.

20I beg God for help,

but there is no answer;

and when I stand up,

he simply stares.

21God has turned brutal,

22stirring up a storm

to toss me about.

23Soon he will send me home

to the world of the dead,

where we all must go.

24No one refuses help to others,

when disaster strikes.

25I mourned for the poor

and those who suffered.

26But when I beg for relief

and light,

all I receive are disaster

and darkness.

27My stomach is tied in knots;

pain is my daily companion.

28Suffering has scorched my skin,

and in the city council

I stand and cry out,

29making mournful sounds

like jackals and owls.

30My skin is so parched,

that it peels right off,

and my bones are burning.

31My only songs are sorrow

and sadness.

Job 27:1-30:31CEVOpen in Bible reader

Herod causes trouble for the church

1At that time King Herod caused terrible suffering for some members of the church. 2He ordered soldiers to cut off the head of James, the brother of John. 3When Herod saw that this pleased the Jewish people, he had Peter arrested during the Festival of Thin Bread. 4He put Peter in jail and ordered four squads of soldiers to guard him. Herod planned to put him on trial in public after the festival.

5While Peter was being kept in jail, the church never stopped praying to God for him.

Peter is rescued

6The night before Peter was to be put on trial, he was asleep and bound by two chains. A soldier was guarding him on each side, and two other soldiers were guarding the entrance to the jail. 7Suddenly an angel from the Lord appeared, and light flashed around in the cell. The angel poked Peter in the side and woke him up. Then he said, “Quick! Get up!”

The chains fell off his hands, 8and the angel said, “Get dressed and put on your sandals.” Peter did what he was told. Then the angel said, “Now put on your coat and follow me.” 9Peter left with the angel, but he thought everything was only a dream. 10They went past the two groups of soldiers, and when they came to the iron gate to the city, it opened by itself. They went out and were going along the street, when all at once the angel disappeared.

11Peter now realized what had happened, and he said, “I am certain that the Lord sent his angel to rescue me from Herod and from everything the Jewish leaders planned to do to me.” 12Then Peter went to the house of Mary the mother of John whose other name was Mark. Many of the Lord's followers had come together there and were praying.

13Peter knocked on the gate, and a servant named Rhoda came to answer. 14When she heard Peter's voice, she was too excited to open the gate. She ran back into the house and said that Peter was standing there.

15“You are mad!” everyone told her. But she kept saying that it was Peter. Then they said, “It must be his angel.” 16But Peter kept on knocking, until finally they opened the gate. They saw him and were completely amazed.

17Peter motioned for them to keep quiet. Then he told how the Lord had led him out of jail. He also said, “Tell James and the others what has happened.” After that, he left and went somewhere else.

18The next morning the soldiers who had been on guard were terribly worried and wondered what had happened to Peter. 19Herod ordered his own soldiers to search for him, but they could not find him. Then he questioned the guards and had them put to death. After this, Herod left Judea to stay in Caesarea for a while.

Herod dies

20Herod and the people of Tyre and Sidon were very angry with each other. But their country got its food supply from the region that he ruled. So a group of them went to see Blastus, who was one of Herod's high officials. They convinced Blastus that they wanted to make peace between their cities and Herod, 21and a day was set for them to meet with him.

Herod came dressed in his royal robes. He sat down on his throne and made a speech. 22The people shouted, “You speak more like a god than a man!” 23At once an angel from the Lord struck him down because he took the honour that belonged to God. Later, Herod was eaten by worms and died.

24God's message kept spreading. 25And after Barnabas and Saul had done the work they were sent to do, they went back to Jerusalem with John, whose other name was Mark.

Acts 12:1-25CEVOpen in Bible reader
Canadian Bible Societyv.4.21.9
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