24:1 The Lord showed me two baskets of figs sitting before his temple. This happened after King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon deported Jehoiakim’s son, King Jeconiah of Judah. He deported him and the leaders of Judah from Jerusalem, along with the craftsmen and metal workers, and took them to Babylon. 2One basket had very good-looking figs in it. They looked like those that had ripened early. The other basket had very bad-looking figs in it, so bad they could not be eaten. 3The Lord said to me, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” I answered, “I see figs. The good ones look very good. But the bad ones look very bad, so bad that they cannot be eaten.”
4The Lord’s message came to me, 5“I, the Lord, the God of Israel, say: ‘The exiles of Judah whom I sent away from here to the land of Babylon are like those good figs. I consider them to be good. 6I will look after their welfare and will restore them to this land. There I will build them up and will not tear them down. I will plant them firmly in the land and will not uproot them. 7I will give them the desire to acknowledge that I am the Lord. I will be their God and they will be my people. For they will wholeheartedly return to me.’
8 “I, the Lord, also solemnly assert: ‘King Zedekiah of Judah, his officials, and the people who remain in Jerusalem or who have gone to live in Egypt are like those bad figs. I consider them to be just like those bad figs that are so bad they cannot be eaten. 9I will bring such disaster on them that all the kingdoms of the earth will be horrified. I will make them an object of reproach, a proverbial example of disaster. I will make them an object of ridicule, an example to be used in curses. That is how they will be remembered wherever I banish them. 10I will bring war, starvation, and disease on them until they are completely destroyed from the land I gave them and their ancestors.’”(NET Bible)
146:1 Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord, O my soul!
2I will praise the Lord as long as I live!
I will sing praises to my God as long as I exist!
3Do not trust in princes,
or in human beings, who cannot deliver!
4Their life’s breath departs, they return to the ground;
on that day their plans die.
5How blessed is the one whose helper is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord his God,
6the one who made heaven and earth,
the sea, and all that is in them,
who remains forever faithful,
7vindicates the oppressed,
and gives food to the hungry.
The Lord releases the imprisoned.
8The Lord gives sight to the blind.
The Lord lifts up all who are bent over.
The Lord loves the godly.
9The Lord protects the resident foreigner;
he lifts up the fatherless and the widow,
but he opposes the wicked.
10The Lord rules forever,
your God, O Zion, throughout the generations to come!
Praise the Lord!(NET Bible)
14:8 In Lystra sat a man who could not use his feet, lame from birth, who had never walked. 9This man was listening to Paul as he was speaking. When Paul stared intently at him and saw he had faith to be healed, 10he said with a loud voice, “Stand upright on your feet.” And the man leaped up and began walking. 11So when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they shouted in the Lycaonian language, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” 12They began to call Barnabas Zeus and Paul Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. 13The priest of the temple of Zeus, located just outside the city, brought bulls and garlands to the city gates; he and the crowds wanted to offer sacrifices to them. 14But when the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard about it, they tore their clothes and rushed out into the crowd, shouting, 15“Men, why are you doing these things? We too are men, with human natures just like you! We are proclaiming the good news to you, so that you should turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and everything that is in them. 16In past generations he allowed all the nations to go their own ways, 17yet he did not leave himself without a witness by doing good, by giving you rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying you with food and your hearts with joy.” 18Even by saying these things, they scarcely persuaded the crowds not to offer sacrifice to them.(NET Bible)
It is not a matter of the origin of the Old Testament Scripture and its parts but of the value and the significance which it still has for the Christian. That the Old Testament, too, in its totality, in the opinion of Luther, was the Word of God needs no further proof. Yet, let this at least be quoted from his Introduction to the Old Testament: “I beg and faithfully warn every pious Christian not to stumble at the simplicity of the language and the stories that will often meet him there. He should not doubt that, however simple they may seem, there are the very words, works, judgments, and deeds of the high Majesty, power, and wisdom of God; for this is Scripture, and it makes the wisdom of God that He, lays before you in such simple and foolish (Matt. 11:25). Therefore let your own thoughts and feelings go and think of the Scriptures as the loftiest and noblest of holy things, as the richest of mines, which can never be worked out, so that you may find the wisdom of God that He lays before you in such simple and foolish guise, in order that He may quench all pride. Here you will find the swaddling clothes and the manger in which Christ lies, and to which the angel points the shepherds. Simple and little are the swaddling clothes, but dear is the treasure, Christ, that lies in them.” (28–29)
–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.