37:1 The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and placed me in the midst of the valley, and it was full of bones. 2He made me walk all around among them. I realized there were a great many bones in the valley, and they were very dry. 3He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said to him, “Sovereign Lord, you know.” 4Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and tell them: ‘Dry bones, listen to the Lord’s message. 5This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: Look, I am about to infuse breath into you and you will live. 6I will put tendons on you and muscles over you and will cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will live. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’”
7So I prophesied as I was commanded. There was a sound when I prophesied— I heard a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8As I watched, I saw tendons on them, then muscles appeared, and skin covered over them from above, but there was no breath in them.
9He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath—prophesy, son of man—and say to the breath: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these corpses so that they may live.’” 10So I prophesied as I was commanded, and the breath came into them; they lived and stood on their feet, an extremely great army.
11Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are all the house of Israel. Look, they are saying, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope has perished; we are cut off.’ 12Therefore prophesy, and tell them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Look, I am about to open your graves and will raise you from your graves, my people. I will bring you to the land of Israel. 13Then you will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and raise you from your graves, my people. 14I will place my breath in you and you will live; I will give you rest in your own land. Then you will know that I am the Lord—I have spoken and I will act, declares the Lord.’”
15The Lord’s message came to me: 16“As for you, son of man, take one branch and write on it, ‘For Judah and for the Israelites associated with him.’ Then take another branch and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the branch of Ephraim, and all the house of Israel associated with him.’ 17Join them as one stick; they will be as one in your hand. 18When your people say to you, ‘Will you not tell us what these things mean?’ 19tell them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Look, I am about to take the branch of Joseph that is in the hand of Ephraim and the tribes of Israel associated with him, and I will place them on the stick of Judah and make them into one stick—they will be one in my hand.’ 20The sticks you write on will be in your hand in front of them. 21Then tell them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Look, I am about to take the Israelites from among the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from round about and bring them to their land. 22I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel, and one king will rule over them all. They will never again be two nations and never again be divided into two kingdoms. 23They will not defile themselves with their idols, their detestable things, and all their rebellious deeds. I will save them from all their unfaithfulness by which they sinned. I will purify them; they will become my people, and I will become their God.
24“‘My servant David will be king over them; there will be one shepherd for all of them. They will follow my regulations and carefully observe my statutes. 25They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, in which your fathers lived; they will live in it—they and their children and their grandchildren forever. David my servant will be prince over them forever. 26I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be a perpetual covenant with them. I will establish them, increase their numbers, and place my sanctuary among them forever. 27My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. 28Then, when my sanctuary is among them forever, the nations will know that I, the Lord, sanctify Israel.’”(NET Bible)
98:1 A psalm.
Sing to the Lord a new song,
for he performs amazing deeds.
His right hand and his mighty arm
2The Lord demonstrates his power to deliver;
in the sight of the nations he reveals his justice.
3He remains loyal and faithful to the family of Israel.
All the ends of the earth see our God deliver us.
4Shout out praises to the Lord, all the earth.
Break out in a joyful shout and sing!
5Sing to the Lord accompanied by a harp,
accompanied by a harp and the sound of music.
6With trumpets and the blaring of the ram’s horn,
shout out praises before the king, the Lord.
7Let the sea and everything in it shout,
along with the world and those who live in it.
8Let the rivers clap their hands!
Let the mountains sing in unison
9before the Lord.
For he comes to judge the earth.
He judges the world fairly,
and the nations in a just manner.(NET Bible)
9:1 Now the first covenant, in fact, had regulations for worship and its earthly sanctuary. 2For a tent was prepared, the outer one, which contained the lampstand, the table, and the presentation of the loaves; this is called the Holy Place. 3And after the second curtain there was a tent called the holy of holies. 4It contained the golden altar of incense and the ark of the covenant covered entirely with gold. In this ark were the golden urn containing the manna, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the stone tablets of the covenant. 5And above the ark were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Now is not the time to speak of these things in detail. 6So with these things prepared like this, the priests enter continually into the outer tent as they perform their duties. 7But only the high priest enters once a year into the inner tent, and not without blood that he offers for himself and for the sins of the people committed in ignorance. 8The Holy Spirit is making clear that the way into the Holy Place had not yet appeared as long as the old tabernacle was standing. 9This was a symbol for the time then present, when gifts and sacrifices were offered that could not perfect the conscience of the worshiper. 10They served only for matters of food and drink and various ritual washings; they are external regulations imposed until the new order came.(NET Bible)
In the passage cited above, that is taken from the Exposition of the First and Second Chapter of John, 1537 and 1538, there is the statement: “But these are questions that remain questions which I will not solve and that do not give me much concern, only there are people so sly and keen that they raise all kinds of questions for which they want to have answers. If one, however, has a correct understanding of Scripture and possesses the true statement of our faith that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, has su ered and died for us, it will not be a serious defect if we are not able to answer them.” And following this: “When discrepancies occur in Holy Scripture (namely concerning such chronological questions as these: how many years Jesus taught openly, how the account of the Temple cleansing in John agrees with Matthew, and similar questions) and we cannot harmonize them, let it pass, it does not endanger the article of the Christian faith.” In these statements Luther does not say that it is a matter of indi erence to him whether they contain errors or not but only that his faith would not be endangered, if, in spite of his best efforts, he would be unable to solve the apparent contradictions or to prove the inconsequence of all skeptical questions. He dismisses the matter if he cannot prove it conclusively, but his inability to do so neither commits him to the opinion that these passages really contain error, nor is his faith in salvation thereby imperiled. (49–50)
–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.