12:1 Ephraim continually feeds on the wind;
he chases the east wind all day;
he multiplies lies and violence.
They make treaties with Assyria,
and send olive oil as tribute to Egypt.
2The Lord also has a covenant lawsuit against Judah;
he will punish Jacob according to his ways
and repay him according to his deeds.
3In the womb he attacked his brother;
in his manly vigor he struggled with God.
4He struggled with an angel and prevailed;
he wept and begged for his favor.
He found God at Bethel,
and there he spoke with him!
5As for the Lord God Almighty,
the Lord is the name by which he is remembered!
6But you must return to your God,
by maintaining love and justice,
and by waiting for your God to return to you.
7The businessmen love to cheat;
they use dishonest scales.
8Ephraim boasts, “I am very rich!
I have become wealthy!
In all that I have done to gain my wealth,
no one can accuse me of any offense that is actually sinful.”
9 “I am the Lord your God who brought you out of Egypt;
I will make you live in tents again as in the days of old.
10I spoke to the prophets;
I myself revealed many visions;
I spoke in parables through the prophets.”
11Is there idolatry in Gilead?
Certainly its inhabitants will come to nothing!
Do they sacrifice bulls in Gilgal?
Surely their altars will be like stones heaped up on a plowed field!
12Jacob fled to the country of Aram,
then Israel worked to acquire a wife;
he tended sheep to pay for her.
13The Lord brought Israel out of Egypt by a prophet,
and due to a prophet Israel was preserved alive.
14But Ephraim bitterly provoked him to anger;
so he will hold him accountable for the blood he has shed,
his Lord will repay him for the contempt he has shown.(NET Bible)
77:1 For the music director, Jeduthun; a psalm of Asaph.
I will cry out to God and call for help!
I will cry out to God and he will pay attention to me.
2In my time of trouble I sought the Lord.
I kept my hand raised in prayer throughout the night.
I refused to be comforted.
3I said, “I will remember God while I groan;
I will think about him while my strength leaves me.” (Selah)
4You held my eyelids open;
I was troubled and could not speak.
5I thought about the days of old,
about ancient times.
6I said, “During the night I will remember the song I once sang;
I will think very carefully.”
I tried to make sense of what was happening.
7I asked, “Will the Lord reject me forever?
Will he never again show me his favor?
8Has his loyal love disappeared forever?
Has his promise failed forever?
9Has God forgotten to be merciful?
Has his anger stifled his compassion?” (Selah)
10Then I said, “I am sickened by the thought
that the Most High might become inactive.
11I will remember the works of the Lord.
Yes, I will remember the amazing things you did long ago!
12I will think about all you have done;
I will reflect upon your deeds!”
13 O God, your deeds are extraordinary!
What god can compare to our great God?
14You are the God who does amazing things;
you have revealed your strength among the nations.
15You delivered your people by your strength –
the children of Jacob and Joseph. (Selah)
16The waters saw you, O God,
the waters saw you and trembled.
Yes, the depths of the sea shook with fear.
17The clouds poured down rain;
the skies thundered.
Yes, your arrows flashed about.
18Your thunderous voice was heard in the wind;
the lightning bolts lit up the world;
the earth trembled and shook.
19You walked through the sea;
you passed through the surging waters,
but left no footprints.
20You led your people like a flock of sheep,
by the hand of Moses and Aaron.(NET Bible)
9:1 I am telling the truth in Christ (I am not lying!), for my conscience assures me in the Holy Spirit – 2I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3For I could wish that I myself were accursed – cut off from Christ – for the sake of my people, my fellow countrymen, 4who are Israelites. To them belong the adoption as sons, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the temple worship, and the promises. 5To them belong the patriarchs, and from them, by human descent, came the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever! Amen.
6It is not as though the word of God had failed. For not all those who are descended from Israel are truly Israel, 7nor are all the children Abraham’s true descendants; rather “through Isaac will your descendants be counted.” 8This means it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God; rather, the children of promise are counted as descendants. 9For this is what the promise declared: “About a year from now I will return and Sarah will have a son.” 10Not only that, but when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our ancestor Isaac – 11even before they were born or had done anything good or bad (so that God’s purpose in election would stand, not by works but by his calling) – 12 it was said to her, “The older will serve the younger,” 13just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”
14What shall we say then? Is there injustice with God? Absolutely not! 15For he says to Moses: “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16So then, it does not depend on human desire or exertion, but on God who shows mercy. 17For the scripture says to Pharaoh: “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I may demonstrate my power in you, and that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18So then, God has mercy on whom he chooses to have mercy, and he hardens whom he chooses to harden.
19You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who has ever resisted his will?” 20But who indeed are you – a mere human being – to talk back to God? Does what is molded say to the molder, “Why have you made me like this?” 21Has the potter no right to make from the same lump of clay one vessel for special use and another for ordinary use? 22But what if God, willing to demonstrate his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience the objects of wrath prepared for destruction? 23And what if he is willing to make known the wealth of his glory on the objects of mercy that he has prepared beforehand for glory – 24even us, whom he has called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles? 25As he also says in Hosea:
“I will call those who were not my people, ‘My people,’ and I will call her who was unloved, ‘My beloved.’”
26 “And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’
there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’”(NET Bible)
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016.
Here we might add what Luther said in 1528 in his Vom Abendmahl Christi, Bekenntnis … “So we must say that Matthew and Mark have placed after the New Supper what took place after the old Supper and is to be located there. For they were not greatly concerned about the order but were satisfied if they wrote history and truth. Luke, however, who wrote after them, states that the reason for his writing was that many others had written such accounts without regard to the order of events, and that he, therefore, had resolved to write them in proper order.” (47–48)
–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.