11:1 The Lord said to Jeremiah: 2“Hear the terms of the covenant I made with Israel and pass them on to the people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem. 3Tell them that the Lord, the God of Israel, says, ‘Anyone who does not keep the terms of the covenant will be under a curse. 4Those are the terms that I charged your ancestors to keep when I brought them out of Egypt, that place which was like an iron-smelting furnace. I said at that time, “Obey me and carry out the terms of the covenant exactly as I commanded you. If you do, you will be my people and I will be your God. 5Then I will keep the promise I swore on oath to your ancestors to give them a land flowing with milk and honey.” That is the very land that you still live in today.’” And I responded, “Amen! Let it be so, Lord!”
6The Lord said to me, “Announce all the following words in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem: ‘Listen to the terms of my covenant with you and carry them out! 7For I solemnly warned your ancestors to obey me. I warned them again and again, ever since I delivered them out of Egypt until this very day. 8But they did not listen to me or pay any attention to me! Each one of them followed the stubborn inclinations of his own wicked heart. So I brought on them all the punishments threatened in the covenant because they did not carry out its terms as I commanded them to do.’”
9The Lord said to me, “The people of Judah and the citizens of Jerusalem have plotted rebellion against me! 10They have gone back to the evil ways of their ancestors of old who refused to obey what I told them. They, too, have paid allegiance to other gods and worshiped them. Both the nation of Israel and the nation of Judah have violated the covenant I made with their ancestors. 11So I, the Lord, say this: ‘I will soon bring disaster on them which they will not be able to escape! When they cry out to me for help, I will not listen to them. 12Then those living in the towns of Judah and in Jerusalem will go and cry out for help to the gods to whom they have been sacrificing. However, those gods will by no means be able to save them when disaster strikes them. 13This is in spite of the fact that the people of Judah have as many gods as they have towns and the citizens of Jerusalem have set up as many altars to sacrifice to that disgusting god, Baal, as they have streets in the city!’ 14But as for you, Jeremiah, do not pray for these people. Do not raise a cry of prayer for them. For I will not listen to them when they call out to me for help when disaster strikes them.”
15The Lord says to the people of Judah,
“What right do you have to be in my temple, my beloved people?
Many of you have done wicked things.
Can your acts of treachery be so easily canceled by sacred offerings
that you take joy in doing evil even while you make them?
16I, the Lord, once called you a thriving olive tree,
one that produced beautiful fruit.
But I will set you on fire,
fire that will blaze with a mighty roar.
Then all your branches will be good for nothing.
17For though I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, planted you in the land,
I now decree that disaster will come on you
because the nations of Israel and Judah have done evil
and have made me angry by offering sacrifices to the god Baal.”
18The Lord gave me knowledge, that I might have understanding.
Then he showed me what the people were doing.
19Before this I had been like a docile lamb ready to be led to the slaughter.
I did not know they were making plans to kill me.
I did not know they were saying,
“Let’s destroy the tree along with its fruit!
Let’s remove Jeremiah from the world of the living
so people will not even be reminded of him any more.”
20So I said,
“O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, you are a just judge!
You examine people’s hearts and minds.
I want to see you pay them back for what they have done
because I trust you to vindicate my cause.”
21Then the Lord told me about some men from Anathoth who were threatening to kill me. They had threatened, “Stop prophesying in the name of the Lord or we will kill you!” 22So the Lord of Heaven’s Armies said, “I will surely punish them! Their young men will be killed in battle. Their sons and daughters will die of starvation. 23Not one of them will survive. I will bring disaster on those men from Anathoth who threatened you. A day of reckoning is coming for them.”(NET Bible)
127:1 A song of ascents, by Solomon.
If the Lord does not build a house,
then those who build it work in vain.
If the Lord does not guard a city,
then the watchman stands guard in vain.
2It is vain for you to rise early, come home late,
and work so hard for your food.
Yes, he provides for those whom he loves even when they sleep.
3Yes, sons are a gift from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb is a reward.
4Sons born during one’s youth
are like arrows in a warrior’s hand.
5How blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them!
They will not be put to shame when they confront enemies at the city gate.(NET Bible)
7:1 Then the high priest said, “Are these things true?” 2So he replied, “Brothers and fathers, listen to me. The God of glory appeared to our forefather Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he settled in Haran, 3and said to him, ‘Go out from your country and from your relatives, and come to the land I will show you.’ 4Then he went out from the country of the Chaldeans and settled in Haran. After his father died, God made him move to this country where you now live. 5He did not give any of it to him for an inheritance, not even a foot of ground, yet God promised to give it to him as his possession, and to his descendants after him, even though Abraham as yet had no child. 6But God spoke as follows: ‘Your descendants will be foreigners in a foreign country, whose citizens will enslave them and mistreat them for four hundred years. 7But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves,’ said God, ‘and after these things they will come out of there and worship me in this place.’ 8Then God gave Abraham the covenant of circumcision, and so he became the father of Isaac and circumcised him when he was eight days old, and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs. 9The patriarchs, because they were jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt. But God was with him, 10and rescued him from all his troubles, and granted him favor and wisdom in the presence of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, who made him ruler over Egypt and over all his household. 11Then a famine occurred throughout Egypt and Canaan, causing great suffering, and our ancestors could not find food. 12So when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our ancestors there the first time. 13On their second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers again, and Joseph’s family became known to Pharaoh. 14So Joseph sent a message and invited his father Jacob and all his relatives to come, seventy-five people in all. 15So Jacob went down to Egypt and died there, along with our ancestors, 16and their bones were later moved to Shechem and placed in the tomb that Abraham had bought for a certain sum of money from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.
17 “But as the time drew near for God to fulfill the promise he had declared to Abraham, the people increased greatly in number in Egypt, 18until another king who did not know about Joseph ruled over Egypt. 19This was the one who exploited our people and was cruel to our ancestors, forcing them to abandon their infants so they would die. 20At that time Moses was born, and he was beautiful to God. For three months he was brought up in his father’s house, 21and when he had been abandoned, Pharaoh’s daughter adopted him and brought him up as her own son. 22So Moses was trained in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in his words and deeds. 23But when he was about forty years old, it entered his mind to visit his fellow countrymen the Israelites. 24When he saw one of them being hurt unfairly, Moses came to his defense and avenged the person who was mistreated by striking down the Egyptian. 25He thought his own people would understand that God was delivering them through him, but they did not understand. 26The next day Moses saw two men fighting, and tried to make peace between them, saying, ‘Men, you are brothers; why are you hurting one another?’ 27But the man who was unfairly hurting his neighbor pushed Moses aside, saying, ‘Who made you a ruler and judge over us? 28You don’t want to kill me the way you killed the Egyptian yesterday, do you?’ 29When the man said this, Moses fled and became a foreigner in the land of Midian, where he became the father of two sons.
30 “After forty years had passed, an angel appeared to him in the desert of Mount Sinai, in the flame of a burning bush. 31When Moses saw it, he was amazed at the sight, and when he approached to investigate, there came the voice of the Lord, 32‘I am the God of your forefathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.’ Moses began to tremble and did not dare to look more closely. 33But the Lord said to him, ‘Take the sandals off your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy ground. 34I have certainly seen the suffering of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their groaning, and I have come down to rescue them. Now come, I will send you to Egypt.’ (NET Bible)
During the summer [Luther] defended himself in a German as well as in a Latin treatise against the attack by King Henry VIII of England. I will quote only the brief word from the Latin writing, “They demand that we believe them; I do not demand that men should believe me but that they should believe the clear words of God.” From the German we quote: “But that he (King Henry) cites the statements of several of the Fathers and ridicules my arrogance that I alone would be smart whereas I am the greatest fool, does not a affect me. For me it is enough that King Heinz can not quote a single Scripture … But I place against the sayings of all Fathers, all angels’, men’s, devils’ artifice and word, the Scripture and the gospel. Here I stand, here I bid defiance, here I strut about and say, God’s Word for me is above everything; divine majesty stands by me (i.e., in and with the Word); therefore I will not give a hair though a thousand Augustines, a thousand Heinze-Churches were also against me, and I am certain that the true Church with me holds fast to the Word of God.” (22–23)
–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.