6:1 Woe to those who live in ease in Zion,
to those who feel secure on Mount Samaria.
They think of themselves as the elite class of the best nation.
The family of Israel looks to them for leadership.
2They say to the people:
“Journey over to Calneh and look at it;
then go from there to Hamath-Rabbah;
then go down to Gath of the Philistines.
Are they superior to our two kingdoms?
Is their territory larger than yours?”
3You refuse to believe a day of disaster will come,
but you establish a reign of violence.
4They lie around on beds decorated with ivory
and sprawl out on their couches.
They eat lambs from the flock
and calves from the middle of the pen.
5They sing to the tune of stringed instruments;
like David they invent musical instruments.
6They drink wine from sacrificial bowls
and pour the very best oils on themselves.
Yet they are not concerned over the ruin of Joseph.
7Therefore they will now be the first to go into exile,
and the religious banquets where they sprawl on couches will end.
8The Sovereign Lord confirms this oath by his very own life.
The Lord God of Heaven’s Armies is speaking:
“I despise Jacob’s arrogance;
I hate their fortresses.
I will hand over to their enemies the city of Samaria and everything in it.”
9If 10 men are left in one house, they too will die. 10When their close relatives, the ones who will burn the corpses, pick up their bodies to remove the bones from the house, they will say to anyone who is in the inner rooms of the house, “Is anyone else with you?” He will respond, “No one.” Then he will say, “Hush! Don’t invoke the Lord’s name!”
11Indeed, look! The Lord is giving the command.
He will smash the large house to bits
and the small house into little pieces.
12Can horses run on rocky cliffs?
Can one plow the sea with oxen?
Yet you have turned justice into a poisonous plant
and the fruit of righteous actions into a bitter plant.
13You are happy because you conquered Lo Debar.
You say, “Did we not conquer Karnaim by our own power?”
14“Look! I am about to bring a nation against you, family of Israel,”
the Lord, the God who commands armies, is speaking.
“They will oppress you all the way from Lebo Hamath to the stream of the rift valley.”(NET Bible)
95:1 Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord.
Let us shout out praises to our Protector who delivers us.
2Let us enter his presence with thanksgiving.
Let us shout out to him in celebration.
3For the Lord is a great God,
a great king who is superior to all gods.
4The depths of the earth are in his hand,
and the mountain peaks belong to him.
5The sea is his, for he made it.
His hands formed the dry land.
6Come, let us bow down and worship.
Let us kneel before the Lord, our Creator.
7For he is our God;
we are the people of his pasture,
the sheep he owns.
Today, if only you would obey him.
8He says, “Do not be stubborn like they were at Meribah,
like they were that day at Massah in the wilderness,
9where your ancestors challenged my authority
and tried my patience, even though they had seen my work.
10For 40 years I was continually disgusted with that generation,
and I said, ‘These people desire to go astray;
they do not obey my commands.’
11So I made a vow in my anger,
‘They will never enter into the resting place I had set aside for them.’”(NET Bible)
3:22 The experts in the law who came down from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and, “By the ruler of demons he casts out demons!” 23So he called them and spoke to them in parables: “How can Satan cast out Satan? 24If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom will not be able to stand. 25If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 26And if Satan rises against himself and is divided, he is not able to stand and his end has come. 27But no one is able to enter a strong man’s house and steal his property unless he first ties up the strong man. Then he can thoroughly plunder his house. 28I tell you the truth, people will be forgiven for all sins, even all the blasphemies they utter. 29But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, but is guilty of an eternal sin” 30(because they said, “He has an unclean spirit”).
31Then Jesus’ mother and his brothers came. Standing outside, they sent word to him, to summon him. 32A crowd was sitting around him and they said to him, “Look, your mother and your brothers are outside looking for you.” 33He answered them and said, “Who are my mother and my brothers?” 34And looking at those who were sitting around him in a circle, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! 35For whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.”(NET Bible)
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016.
Even in the introduction [to his lectures on Galatians delivered between 1535 and 1545] Luther discussed how the six days of creation are to be understood. He recalls that Hilary and Augustine, these two great lights of the church, were of the opinion that the world was created suddenly and not gradually in the course of six days. Then he opposes this view and writes: “Because we are not sufficiently able to understand how these days occurred nor why God wished to observe such distinctions of times, we shall rather admit our ignorance than attempt to twist the words unnecessarily into an unnatural meaning. As far, therefore, as St. Augustine’s opinion is concerned, we hold that Moses spoke literally not allegorically or figuratively, that is, the world and all its creatures was created within the six days as the words declare. Because we are not able to comprehend we shall remain disciples and leave the instructorship to the Holy Ghost.” (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.