Through the Bible – Day 204

Bible text(s)

(A psalm by David for the music leader. Use with stringed instruments.)

Under the protection of God

1Please listen, God,

and answer my prayer!

2I feel hopeless,

and I cry out to you

from a faraway land.

Lead me to the mighty rock

high above me.

3You are a strong tower,

where I am safe

from my enemies.

4Let me live with you for ever

and find protection

under your wings, my God.

5You heard my promises,

and you have blessed me,

just as you bless everyone

who worships you.

6Let the king have a long

and healthy life.

7May he always rule

with you, God, at his side;

may your love and loyalty

watch over him.

8I will sing your praises

for ever and will always

keep my promises.

(A psalm by David for Jeduthun, the music leader.)

God is powerful and kind

1Only God can save me,

and I calmly wait for him.

2God alone is the mighty rock

that keeps me safe

and the fortress

where I am secure.

3I feel like a shaky fence

or a sagging wall.

How long will all of you

attack and assault me?

4You want to bring me down

from my place of honour.

You love to tell lies,

and when your words are kind,

hatred hides in your heart.

5Only God gives inward peace,

and I depend on him.

6God alone is the mighty rock

that keeps me safe,

and he is the fortress

where I feel secure.

7God saves me and honours me.

He is that mighty rock

where I find safety.

8Trust God, my friends,

and always tell him

each one of your concerns.

God is our place of safety.

9We humans are only a breath;

none of us are truly great.

All of us together weigh less

than a puff of air.

10Don't trust in violence

or depend on dishonesty

or rely on great wealth.

11I heard God say two things:

“I am powerful,

12and I am very kind.”

The Lord rewards each of us

according to what we do.

(A psalm by David when he was in the desert of Judah.)

God's love means more than life

1You are my God. I worship you.

In my heart, I long for you,

as I would long for a stream

in a scorching desert.

2I have seen your power

and your glory

in the place of worship.

3Your love means more

than life to me,

and I praise you.

4As long as I live,

I will pray to you.

5I will sing joyful praises

and be filled with excitement

like a guest at a banquet.

6I think about you

before I go to sleep,

and my thoughts turn to you

during the night.

7You have helped me,

and I sing happy songs

in the shadow of your wings.

8I stay close to you,

and your powerful arm

supports me.

9All who want to kill me

will end up in the ground.

10Swords will run them through,

and wild dogs will eat them.

11Because of you, our God,

the king will celebrate

with your faithful followers,

but liars will be silent.

(A psalm by David for the music leader.)

Celebrate because of the LORD

1Listen to my concerns, God,

and protect me

from my terrible enemies.

2Keep me safe from secret plots

of corrupt and evil gangs.

3Their words cut like swords,

and their cruel remarks

sting like sharp arrows.

4They fearlessly ambush

and shoot innocent people.

5They are determined to do evil,

and they tell themselves,

“Let's set traps!

No one can see us.”

6They make evil plans and say,

“We'll commit a perfect crime.

No one knows our thoughts.”

7But God will shoot his arrows

and quickly wound them.

8They will be destroyed

by their own words,

and everyone who sees them

will tremble with fear.

9They will be afraid and say,

“Look at what God has done

and keep it all in mind.”

10May the LORD bless his people

with peace and happiness

and let them celebrate.

Psalms 61:1-64:10CEVOpen in Bible reader

Paul is accused in the court of Felix

1Five days later Ananias the high priest, together with some of their leaders and a lawyer named Tertullus, went to the governor to present their case against Paul. 2So Paul was called in, and Tertullus stated the case against him:

Honourable Felix, you have brought our people a long period of peace, and because of your concern our nation is much better off. 3All of us are always grateful for what you have done. 4I don't want to bother you, but please be patient with us and listen to me for just a few minutes.

5This man has been found to be a real pest and troublemaker for Jews all over the world. He is also a leader of a group called Nazarenes. 6-8When he tried to disgrace the temple, we arrested him. If you question him, you will find out for yourself that our charges are true.

9The Jewish crowd spoke up and agreed with what Tertullus had said.

Paul defends himself

10The governor motioned for Paul to speak, and he began:

I know that you have judged the people of our nation for many years, and I am glad to defend myself in your court.

11It was no more than twelve days ago that I went to worship in Jerusalem. You can find this out easily enough. 12Never once did the Jews find me arguing with anyone in the temple. I didn't cause trouble in the Jewish meeting places or in the city itself. 13There is no way that they can prove these charges that they are now bringing against me.

14I admit that their leaders think that the Lord's Way which I follow is based on wrong beliefs. But I still worship the same God that my ancestors worshipped. And I believe everything written in the Law of Moses and in the Prophets. 15I am just as sure as these people are that God will raise from death everyone who is good or evil. 16And because I am sure, I try my best to have a clear conscience in whatever I do for God or for people.

17After being away for several years, I returned here to bring gifts for the poor people of my nation and to offer sacrifices. 18This is what I was doing when I was found going through a ceremony in the temple. I wasn't with a crowd, and there was no uproar.

19Some Jews from Asia were there at that time, and if they have anything to say against me, they should be here now. 20Or ask the ones who are here. They can tell you that they didn't find me guilty of anything when I was tried by their own council. 21The only charge they can bring against me is what I shouted out in court, when I said, “I am on trial today because I believe that the dead will be raised to life!”

22Felix knew a lot about the Lord's Way. But he brought the trial to an end and said, “I will make my decision after Lysias the commander arrives.” 23He then ordered the army officer to keep Paul under guard, but not to lock him up or to stop his friends from helping him.

Acts 24:1-23CEVOpen in Bible reader
Canadian Bible Societyv.4.21.9
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