32:16 “After I had given the copies of the deed of purchase to Baruch son of Neriah, I prayed to the Lord, 17‘Oh, Sovereign Lord, you did indeed make heaven and earth by your mighty power and great strength. Nothing is too hard for you! 18You show unfailing love to thousands. But you also punish children for the sins of their parents. You are the great and powerful God whose name is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 19You plan great things and you do mighty deeds. You see everything people do. You reward each of them for the way they live and for the things they do. 20You did miracles and amazing deeds in the land of Egypt that have had lasting effect. By this means you gained both in Israel and among humankind a renown that lasts to this day. 21You used your mighty power and your great strength to perform miracles and amazing deeds and to bring great terror on the Egyptians. By this means you brought your people Israel out of the land of Egypt. 22You kept the promise that you swore on oath to their ancestors. You gave them a land flowing with milk and honey. 23But when they came in and took possession of it, they did not obey you or live as you had instructed them. They did not do anything that you commanded them to do. So you brought all this disaster on them. 24Even now siege ramps have been built up around the city in order to capture it. War, starvation, and disease are sure to make the city fall into the hands of the Babylonians who are attacking it. Lord, you threatened that this would happen. Now you can see that it is already taking place. 25The city is sure to fall into the hands of the Babylonians. Yet, in spite of this, you, Sovereign Lord, have said to me, “Buy that field with silver and have the transaction legally witnessed.”’”
26The Lord’s message came to Jeremiah: 27“I am the Lord, the God of all humankind. There is, indeed, nothing too difficult for me. 28Therefore I, the Lord, say: ‘I will indeed hand this city over to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon and the Babylonian army. They will capture it. 29The Babylonian soldiers that are attacking this city will break into it and set it on fire. They will burn it down along with the houses where people have made me angry by offering sacrifices to the god Baal and by pouring out drink offerings to other gods on their rooftops. 30This will happen because the people of Israel and Judah have repeatedly done what displeases me from their earliest history until now and because they have repeatedly made me angry by the things they have done. I, the Lord, affirm it! 31This will happen because the people of this city have aroused my anger and my wrath since the time they built it until now. They have made me so angry that I am determined to remove it from my sight. 32I am determined to do so because the people of Israel and Judah have made me angry with all their wickedness—they, their kings, their officials, their priests, their prophets, and especially the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem have done this wickedness. 33They have turned away from me instead of turning to me. I tried over and over again to instruct them, but they did not listen and respond to correction. 34They set up their disgusting idols in the temple that I have claimed for my own and defiled it. 35They built places of worship for the god Baal in the Valley of Ben Hinnom so that they could sacrifice their sons and daughters to the god Molech. Such a disgusting practice was not something I commanded them to do. It never even entered my mind to command them to do such a thing! So Judah is certainly liable for punishment.’(NET Bible)
10:1 Why, Lord, do you stand far off?
Why do you pay no attention during times of trouble?
2The wicked arrogantly chase the oppressed;
the oppressed are trapped by the schemes the wicked have dreamed up.
3Yes, the wicked man boasts because he gets what he wants;
the one who robs others curses and rejects the Lord.
4The wicked man is so arrogant he always thinks,
“God won’t hold me accountable; he doesn’t care.”
5He is secure at all times.
He has no regard for your commands;
he disdains all his enemies.
6He says to himself,
“I will never be shaken,
because I experience no calamity.”
7His mouth is full of curses and deceptive, harmful words;
his tongue injures and destroys.
8He waits in ambush near the villages;
in hidden places he kills the innocent.
His eyes look for some unfortunate victim.
9He lies in ambush in a hidden place, like a lion in a thicket.
He lies in ambush, waiting to catch the oppressed;
he catches the oppressed by pulling in his net.
10His victims are crushed and beaten down;
they are trapped in his sturdy nets.
11He says to himself,
“God overlooks it;
he does not pay attention;
he never notices.”
12Rise up, Lord!
O God, strike him down.
Do not forget the oppressed.
13Why does the wicked man reject God?
He says to himself, “You will not hold me accountable.”
14You have taken notice,
for you always see one who inflicts pain and suffering.
The unfortunate victim entrusts his cause to you;
you deliver the fatherless.
15Break the arm of the wicked and evil man.
Hold him accountable for his wicked deeds,
which he thought you would not discover.
16The Lord rules forever!
The nations are driven out of his land.
17Lord, you have heard the request of the oppressed;
you make them feel secure because you listen to their prayer.
18You defend the fatherless and oppressed,
so that mere mortals may no longer terrorize them.(NET Bible)
19:21 Now after all these things had taken place, Paul resolved to go to Jerusalem, passing through Macedonia and Achaia. He said, “After I have been there, I must also see Rome.” 22So after sending two of his assistants, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, he himself stayed on for a while in the province of Asia.
23At that time a great disturbance took place concerning the Way. 24For a man named Demetrius, a silversmith who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought a great deal of business to the craftsmen. 25He gathered these together, along with the workmen in similar trades, and said, “Men, you know that our prosperity comes from this business. 26And you see and hear that this Paul has persuaded and turned away a large crowd, not only in Ephesus but in practically all of the province of Asia, by saying that gods made by hands are not gods at all. 27There is danger not only that this business of ours will come into disrepute, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be regarded as nothing, and she whom all the province of Asia and the world worship will suffer the loss of her greatness.”
28When they heard this they became enraged and began to shout, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 29The city was filled with the uproar, and the crowd rushed to the theater together, dragging with them Gaius and Aristarchus, the Macedonians who were Paul’s traveling companions. 30But when Paul wanted to enter the public assembly, the disciples would not let him. 31Even some of the provincial authorities who were his friends sent a message to him, urging him not to venture into the theater. 32So then some were shouting one thing, some another, for the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had met together. 33Some of the crowd concluded it was about Alexander because the Jews had pushed him to the front. Alexander, gesturing with his hand, was wanting to make a defense before the public assembly. 34But when they recognized that he was a Jew, they all shouted in unison, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” for about two hours. 35After the city secretary quieted the crowd, he said, “Men of Ephesus, what person is there who does not know that the city of the Ephesians is the keeper of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image that fell from heaven? 36So because these facts are indisputable, you must keep quiet and not do anything reckless. 37For you have brought these men here who are neither temple robbers nor blasphemers of our goddess. 38If then Demetrius and the craftsmen who are with him have a complaint against someone, the courts are open and there are proconsuls; let them bring charges against one another there. 39But if you want anything in addition, it will have to be settled in a legal assembly. 40For we are in danger of being charged with rioting today, since there is no cause we can give to explain this disorderly gathering.” 41After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.(NET Bible)
As late as 1544 [Luther] wrote in his Kurzes Bekenntnis vom heiligen Sakrament: “It is certain that he who does not or will not believe one article correctly (after he has been taught and admonished) does not believe any sincerely and with the right faith. And whoever is so bold that he ventures to accuse God of fraud and deception in a single word and does so willfully again and again after he has been warned and instructed once or twice will likewise certainly venture to accuse God of fraud and deception in all of His words. erefore it is true, absolutely and without exception, that everything is believed or nothing is believed. The Holy Ghost does not suffer Himself to be separated or divided so that He should teach and cause to be believed one doctrine rightly and another falsely.” (32–33)
–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.