Home > Devotions > Daily Reading – February 2, 2019

1 Samuel 9:18–10:8 (ESV)

18 Then Saul approached Samuel in the gate and said, “Tell me where is the house of the seer?” 19 Samuel answered Saul, “I am the seer. Go up before me to the high place, for today you shall eat with me, and in the morning I will let you go and will tell you all that is on your mind. 20 As for your donkeys that were lost three days ago, do not set your mind on them, for they have been found. And for whom is all that is desirable in Israel? Is it not for you and for all your father’s house?” 21 Saul answered, “Am I not a Benjaminite, from the least of the tribes of Israel? And is not my clan the humblest of all the clans of the tribe of Benjamin? Why then have you spoken to me in this way?”

22 Then Samuel took Saul and his young man and brought them into the hall and gave them a place at the head of those who had been invited, who were about thirty persons. 23 And Samuel said to the cook, “Bring the portion I gave you, of which I said to you, ‘Put it aside.’ ” 24 So the cook took up the leg and what was on it and set them before Saul. And Samuel said, “See, what was kept is set before you. Eat, because it was kept for you until the hour appointed, that you might eat with the guests.”

So Saul ate with Samuel that day. 25 And when they came down from the high place into the city, a bed was spread for Saul on the roof, and he lay down to sleep. 26 Then at the break of dawn Samuel called to Saul on the roof, “Up, that I may send you on your way.” So Saul arose, and both he and Samuel went out into the street.

27 As they were going down to the outskirts of the city, Samuel said to Saul, “Tell the servant to pass on before us, and when he has passed on, stop here yourself for a while, that I may make known to you the word of God.”

Saul Anointed King

10 Then Samuel took a flask of oil and poured it on his head and kissed him and said, “Has not the Lord anointed you to be prince over his people Israel? And you shall reign over the people of the Lord and you will save them from the hand of their surrounding enemies. And this shall be the sign to you that the Lord has anointed you to be prince over his heritage. When you depart from me today, you will meet two men by Rachel’s tomb in the territory of Benjamin at Zelzah, and they will say to you, ‘The donkeys that you went to seek are found, and now your father has ceased to care about the donkeys and is anxious about you, saying, “What shall I do about my son?” ’ Then you shall go on from there farther and come to the oak of Tabor. Three men going up to God at Bethel will meet you there, one carrying three young goats, another carrying three loaves of bread, and another carrying a skin of wine. And they will greet you and give you two loaves of bread, which you shall accept from their hand. After that you shall come to Gibeath-elohim, where there is a garrison of the Philistines. And there, as soon as you come to the city, you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place with harp, tambourine, flute, and lyre before them, prophesying. Then the Spirit of the Lord will rush upon you, and you will prophesy with them and be turned into another man. Now when these signs meet you, do what your hand finds to do, for God is with you. Then go down before me to Gilgal. And behold, I am coming down to you to offer burnt offerings and to sacrifice peace offerings. Seven days you shall wait, until I come to you and show you what you shall do.”

Psalm 31 (ESV)

Into Your Hand I Commit My Spirit

31 To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

In you, O Lord, do I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame;
in your righteousness deliver me!

Incline your ear to me;
rescue me speedily!
Be a rock of refuge for me,
a strong fortress to save me!

For you are my rock and my fortress;
and for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me;

you take me out of the net they have hidden for me,
for you are my refuge.

Into your hand I commit my spirit;
you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God.

I hate those who pay regard to worthless idols,
but I trust in the Lord.

I will rejoice and be glad in your steadfast love,
because you have seen my affliction;
you have known the distress of my soul,

and you have not delivered me into the hand of the enemy;
you have set my feet in a broad place.

Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
my eye is wasted from grief;
my soul and my body also.

10  For my life is spent with sorrow,
and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my iniquity,
and my bones waste away.

11  Because of all my adversaries I have become a reproach,
especially to my neighbors,
and an object of dread to my acquaintances;
those who see me in the street flee from me.

12  I have been forgotten like one who is dead;
I have become like a broken vessel.

13  For I hear the whispering of many—
terror on every side!—
as they scheme together against me,
as they plot to take my life.

14  But I trust in you, O Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”

15  My times are in your hand;
rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors!

16  Make your face shine on your servant;
save me in your steadfast love!

17  O Lord, let me not be put to shame,
for I call upon you;
let the wicked be put to shame;
let them go silently to Sheol.

18  Let the lying lips be mute,
which speak insolently against the righteous
in pride and contempt.

19  Oh, how abundant is your goodness,
which you have stored up for those who fear you
and worked for those who take refuge in you,
in the sight of the children of mankind!

20  In the cover of your presence you hide them
from the plots of men;
you store them in your shelter
from the strife of tongues.

21  Blessed be the Lord,
for he has wondrously shown his steadfast love to me
when I was in a besieged city.

22  I had said in my alarm,
“I am cut off from your sight.”
But you heard the voice of my pleas for mercy
when I cried to you for help.

23  Love the Lord, all you his saints!
The Lord preserves the faithful
but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride.

24  Be strong, and let your heart take courage,
all you who wait for the Lord!

Acts 28:1–10 (ESV)

Paul on Malta

28 After we were brought safely through, we then learned that the island was called Malta. The native people showed us unusual kindness, for they kindled a fire and welcomed us all, because it had begun to rain and was cold. When Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and put them on the fire, a viper came out because of the heat and fastened on his hand. When the native people saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, “No doubt this man is a murderer. Though he has escaped from the sea, Justice has not allowed him to live.” He, however, shook off the creature into the fire and suffered no harm. They were waiting for him to swell up or suddenly fall down dead. But when they had waited a long time and saw no misfortune come to him, they changed their minds and said that he was a god.

Now in the neighborhood of that place were lands belonging to the chief man of the island, named Publius, who received us and entertained us hospitably for three days. It happened that the father of Publius lay sick with fever and dysentery. And Paul visited him and prayed, and putting his hands on him, healed him. And when this had taken place, the rest of the people on the island who had diseases also came and were cured. 10 They also honored us greatly, and when we were about to sail, they put on board whatever we needed.

In his synodical sermon, which he wrote, not in 1512 as the Weimar Edition assumes, but in 1516 for the Provost of Leitzkau, he energetically declares that the work of pastors is the study and the preaching of Scripture. Here we read: “Therefore in this honorable meeting you may resolve many things and order everything well, but if you do not insist that it is commanded for priests, as the teachers of the people, to do away with all unauthentic legendary matter and to concentrate only on the holy Gospel and the holy exponents of the holy Gospel, to proclaim with a sacred reverence the Word of truth to the people and omit at last all speculations of men, or add them only in moderation, setting forth their difference, and thus faithfully labor for the birth from God—I say, if you will not devote yourselves to this with increasing zeal, then I say to you in all frankness everything else will be as nothing. For that is the chief thing that matters, that is the essence of a genuine reformation, that is the very soul of all piety. (15)

–Johann Michael Reu, Luther on the Scriptures

This daily Bible reading guide, Reading the Word of God, was conceived and prepared as a result of the ongoing discussions between representatives of three church bodies: Lutheran Church—Canada (LCC), The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) and the North American Lutheran Church (NALC). The following individuals have represented their church bodies and approved this introduction and the reading guide: LCC: President Robert Bugbee; NALC: Bishop John Bradosky, Revs. Mark Chavez, James Nestingen, and David Wendel; LCMS: Revs. Albert Collver, Joel Lehenbauer, John Pless, and Larry Vogel.

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