Home > Reading > Daily Reading – October 21, 2020

Ezra 1

1:1 In the first year of King Cyrus of Persia, in fulfillment of the Lord’s message spoken through Jeremiah, the Lord motivated King Cyrus of Persia to issue a proclamation throughout his kingdom and also to put it in writing. It read:

2“This is what King Cyrus of Persia says:

“‘The Lord God of heaven has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. He has appointed me to build a temple for him in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. 3Anyone of his people among you (may his God be with him!) may go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and may build the temple of the Lord God of Israel—he is the God who is in Jerusalem. 4Anyone who survives in any of those places where he is a resident foreigner must be helped by his neighbors with silver, gold, equipment, and animals, along with voluntary offerings for the temple of God which is in Jerusalem.’”

5Then the leaders of Judah and Benjamin, along with the priests and the Levites—all those whose mind God had stirred—got ready to go up in order to build the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. 6All their neighbors assisted them with silver utensils, gold, equipment, animals, and expensive gifts, not to mention all the voluntary offerings.

7Then King Cyrus brought out the vessels of the Lord’s temple which Nebuchadnezzar had brought from Jerusalem and had displayed in the temple of his gods. 8King Cyrus of Persia entrusted them to Mithredath the treasurer, who counted them out to Sheshbazzar the leader of the Judahite exiles.

9The inventory of these items was as follows:

30 gold basins,

1,000 silver basins,

29 silver utensils,

1030 gold bowls,

410 other silver bowls,

and 1,000 other vessels.

11All these gold and silver vessels totaled 5,400. Sheshbazzar brought them all along when the captives were brought up from Babylon to Jerusalem.

(NET Bible)

Ps. 107:1–22

107:1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,

and his loyal love endures.

2Let those delivered by the Lord speak out,

those whom he delivered from the power of the enemy

3and gathered from foreign lands,

from east and west,

from north and south.

4They wandered through the wilderness, in a wasteland;

they found no road to a city in which to live.

5They were hungry and thirsty;

they fainted from exhaustion.

6They cried out to the Lord in their distress;

he delivered them from their troubles.

7He led them on a level road

that they might find a city in which to live.

8Let them give thanks to the Lord for his loyal love

and for the amazing things he has done for people.

9For he has satisfied those who thirst,

and those who hunger he has filled with food.

10They sat in utter darkness,

bound in painful iron chains

11because they had rebelled against God’s commands

and rejected the instructions of the Most High.

12So he used suffering to humble them;

they stumbled and no one helped them up.

13They cried out to the Lord in their distress;

he delivered them from their troubles.

14He brought them out of the utter darkness

and tore off their shackles.

15Let them give thanks to the Lord for his loyal love

and for the amazing things he has done for people.

16For he shattered the bronze gates

and hacked through the iron bars.

17They acted like fools in their rebellious ways

and suffered because of their sins.

18They lost their appetite for all food,

and they drew near the gates of death.

19They cried out to the Lord in their distress;

he delivered them from their troubles.

20He sent them an assuring word and healed them;

he rescued them from the pits where they were trapped.

21Let them give thanks to the Lord for his loyal love

and for the amazing things he has done for people.

22Let them present thank offerings,

and loudly proclaim what he has done.

(NET Bible)

Heb. 13:1–16

13:1 Brotherly love must continue. 2Do not neglect hospitality because through it some have entertained angels without knowing it. 3Remember those in prison as though you were in prison with them, and those ill-treated as though you, too, felt their torment. 4Marriage must be honored among all and the marriage bed kept undefiled, for God will judge sexually immoral people and adulterers. 5Your conduct must be free from the love of money, and you must be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you and I will never abandon you.” 6So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, and I will not be afraid. What can people do to me?7Remember your leaders, who spoke God’s message to you; reflect on the outcome of their lives and imitate their faith. 8Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever! 9Do not be carried away by all sorts of strange teachings. For it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not ritual meals, which have never benefited those who participated in them. 10We have an altar that those who serve in the tabernacle have no right to eat from. 11For the bodies of those animals whose blood the high priest brings into the sanctuary as an offering for sin are burned outside the camp. 12Therefore, to sanctify the people by his own blood, Jesus also suffered outside the camp. 13We must go out to him, then, outside the camp, bearing the abuse he experienced. 14For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. 15Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, acknowledging his name. 16And do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for God is pleased with such sacrifices.

(NET Bible)

[Luther] had previously expressed himself in a similar fashion in his sermons on Genesis of the year 1527. In these he said: “I have often said that anyone who wishes to study Holy Scripture shall see to it that he sticks to the simple meaning of the words, as far as possible, and does not depart from them unless he be compelled to do so by some article of the faith that would demand another meaning than the literal one. For we must be sure that there is no plainer speech on earth than that which God has spoken. Therefore, when Moses writes that God in six days created heaven and earth and all that therein is, let it so remain that there were six days, and you dare not find an explanation that six days were one day. Give the Holy Ghost the honor of being wiser that yourself, for you should so deal with Scripture that you believe that God Himself is speaking. Since it is God who is speaking, it is not fitting frivolously to twist His words to mean what you want them to mean, unless necessity should compel a departure from their literal meaning, namely when faith does not permit the literal meaning.” (51)

–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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