16:1 The Lord’s message came to me: 2“Son of man, confront Jerusalem with her abominable practices 3and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says to Jerusalem: Your origin and your birth were in the land of the Canaanites; your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite. 4As for your birth, on the day you were born your umbilical cord was not cut, nor were you washed in water; you were certainly not rubbed down with salt, nor wrapped with blankets. 5No eye took pity on you to do even one of these things for you to spare you; you were thrown out into the open field because you were detested on the day you were born.
6“‘I passed by you and saw you kicking around helplessly in your blood. I said to you as you lay there in your blood, “Live!” I said to you as you lay there in your blood, “Live!” 7I made you plentiful like sprouts in a field; you grew tall and came of age so that you could wear jewelry. Your breasts had formed and your hair had grown, but you were still naked and bare.
8“‘Then I passed by you and watched you, noticing that you had reached the age for love. I spread my cloak over you and covered your nakedness. I swore a solemn oath to you and entered into a marriage covenant with you, declares the Sovereign Lord, and you became mine.
9“‘Then I bathed you in water, washed the blood off you, and anointed you with fragrant oil. 10I dressed you in embroidered clothing and put fine leather sandals on your feet. I wrapped you with fine linen and covered you with silk. 11I adorned you with jewelry. I put bracelets on your hands and a necklace around your neck. 12I put a ring in your nose, earrings on your ears, and a beautiful crown on your head. 13You were adorned with gold and silver, while your clothing was of fine linen, silk, and embroidery. You ate the finest flour, honey, and olive oil. You became extremely beautiful and attained the position of royalty. 14Your fame spread among the nations because of your beauty; your beauty was perfect because of the splendor that I bestowed on you, declares the Sovereign Lord.
15“‘But you trusted in your beauty and capitalized on your fame by becoming a prostitute. You offered your sexual favors to every man who passed by so that your beauty became his. 16You took some of your clothing and made for yourself decorated high places; you engaged in prostitution on them. You went to him to become his. 17You also took your beautiful jewelry, made of my gold and my silver I had given to you, and made for yourself male images and engaged in prostitution with them. 18You took your embroidered clothing and used it to cover them; you offered my olive oil and my incense to them. 19As for my food that I gave you—the fine flour, olive oil, and honey I fed you—you placed it before them as a soothing aroma. That is exactly what happened, declares the Sovereign Lord.
20“‘You took your sons and your daughters whom you bore to me and you sacrificed them as food for the idols to eat. As if your prostitution was not enough, 21you slaughtered my children and sacrificed them to the idols. 22And with all your abominable practices and prostitution you did not remember the days of your youth when you were naked and bare, kicking around in your blood.
23“‘After all your evil—“Woe! Woe to you!” declares the Sovereign Lord— 24you built yourself a chamber and put up a pavilion in every public square. 25At the head of every street you erected your pavilion, and you disgraced your beauty when you spread your legs to every passerby and multiplied your promiscuity. 26You engaged in prostitution with the Egyptians, your lustful neighbors, multiplying your promiscuity and provoking me to anger. 27So see here, I have stretched out my hand against you and cut off your rations. I have delivered you into the power of those who hate you, the daughters of the Philistines, who were ashamed of your obscene conduct. 28You engaged in prostitution with the Assyrians because your desires were insatiable; you prostituted yourself with them and yet you were still not satisfied. 29Then you multiplied your promiscuity to the land of merchants, Babylonia, but you were not satisfied there either.
30“‘How sick is your heart, declares the Sovereign Lord, when you perform all these acts, the deeds of a bold prostitute. 31When you built your chamber at the head of every street and put up your pavilion in every public square, you were not like a prostitute, because you scoffed at payment.
32“‘Adulterous wife, who prefers strangers instead of her own husband! 33All prostitutes receive payment, but instead you give gifts to every one of your lovers. You bribe them to come to you from all around for your sexual favors! 34You were different from other prostitutes because no one solicited you. When you gave payment and no payment was given to you, you became the opposite!
35“‘Therefore, you prostitute, listen to the Lord’s message! 36This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because your lust was poured out and your nakedness was uncovered in your prostitution with your lovers, and because of all your detestable idols, and because of the blood of your children you have given to them, 37therefore, take note: I am about to gather all your lovers whom you enjoyed, both all those you loved and all those you hated. I will gather them against you from all around, and I will expose your nakedness to them, and they will see all your nakedness. 38I will punish you as an adulteress and murderer deserves. I will avenge your bloody deeds with furious rage. 39I will give you into their hands, and they will destroy your chambers and tear down your pavilions. They will strip you of your clothing and take your beautiful jewelry and leave you naked and bare. 40They will summon a mob who will stone you and hack you in pieces with their swords. 41They will burn down your houses and execute judgments on you in front of many women. Thus I will put a stop to your prostitution, and you will no longer give gifts to your clients. 42I will exhaust my rage on you, and then my fury will turn from you. I will calm down and no longer be angry.
43“‘Because you did not remember the days of your youth and have enraged me with all these deeds, I hereby repay you for what you have done, declares the Sovereign Lord. Have you not engaged in prostitution on top of all your other abominable practices?
44“‘Observe—everyone who quotes proverbs will quote this proverb about you: “Like mother, like daughter.” 45You are the daughter of your mother, who detested her husband and her sons, and you are the sister of your sisters, who detested their husbands and their sons. Your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite. 46Your older sister was Samaria, who lived north of you with her daughters, and your younger sister, who lived south of you, was Sodom with her daughters. 47Have you not copied their behavior and practiced their abominable deeds? In a short time you became even more depraved in all your conduct than they were! 48As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, your sister Sodom and her daughters never behaved as wickedly as you and your daughters have behaved.
49“‘See here—this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters had majesty, abundance of food, and enjoyed carefree ease, but they did not help the poor and needy. 50They were haughty and practiced abominable deeds before me. Therefore, when I saw it I removed them. 51Samaria has not committed half the sins you have; you have done more abominable deeds than they did. You have made your sisters appear righteous with all the abominable things you have done. 52So now, bear your disgrace, because you have given your sisters reason to justify their behavior. Because the sins you have committed were more abominable than those of your sisters; they have become more righteous than you. So now, be ashamed and bear the disgrace of making your sisters appear righteous.
53“‘I will restore their fortunes, the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters, and the fortunes of Samaria and her daughters (along with your fortunes among them), 54so that you may bear your disgrace and be ashamed of all you have done in consoling them. 55As for your sisters, Sodom and her daughters will be restored to their former status, Samaria and her daughters will be restored to their former status, and you and your daughters will be restored to your former status. 56In your days of majesty, was not Sodom your sister a byword in your mouth, 57before your evil was exposed? Now you have become an object of scorn to the daughters of Aram and all those around her and to the daughters of the Philistines—those all around you who despise you. 58You must bear your punishment for your obscene conduct and your abominable practices, declares the Lord.
59“‘For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will deal with you according to what you have done when you despised your oath by breaking your covenant. 60Yet I will remember the covenant I made with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish a lasting covenant with you. 61Then you will remember your conduct and be ashamed when you receive your older and younger sisters. I will give them to you as daughters, but not on account of my covenant with you. 62I will establish my covenant with you, and then you will know that I am the Lord. 63Then you will remember, be ashamed, and remain silent because of your disgrace when I make atonement for all you have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.’”(NET Bible)
78:1 A well-written song by Asaph.
Pay attention, my people, to my instruction.
Listen to the words I speak.
2I will sing a song that imparts wisdom;
I will make insightful observations about the past.
3What we have heard and learned—
that which our ancestors have told us—
4we will not hide from their descendants.
We will tell the next generation
about the Lord’s praiseworthy acts,
about his strength and the amazing things he has done.
5He established a rule in Jacob;
he set up a law in Israel.
He commanded our ancestors
to make his deeds known to their descendants,
6so that the next generation, children yet to be born,
might know about them.
They will grow up and tell their descendants about them.
7Then they will place their confidence in God.
They will not forget the works of God,
and they will obey his commands.
8Then they will not be like their ancestors,
who were a stubborn and rebellious generation,
a generation that was not committed
and faithful to God.
9The Ephraimites were armed with bows,
but they retreated in the day of battle.
10They did not keep their covenant with God,
and they refused to obey his law.
11They forgot what he had done,
the amazing things he had shown them.
12He did amazing things in the sight of their ancestors,
in the land of Egypt, in the region of Zoan.
13He divided the sea and led them across it;
he made the water stand in a heap.
14He led them with a cloud by day
and with the light of a fire all night long.
15He broke open rocks in the wilderness
and gave them enough water to fill the depths of the sea.
16He caused streams to flow from the rock
and made the water flow like rivers.
17Yet they continued to sin against him
and rebelled against the Most High in the desert.
18They willfully challenged God
by asking for food to satisfy their appetite.
19They insulted God, saying,
“Is God really able to give us food in the wilderness?
20Yes, he struck a rock and water flowed out;
streams gushed forth.
But can he also give us food?
Will he provide meat for his people?”
21When the Lord heard this, he was furious.
A fire broke out against Jacob,
and his anger flared up against Israel,
22because they did not have faith in God
and did not trust his ability to deliver them.
23He gave a command to the clouds above
and opened the doors in the sky.
24He rained down manna for them to eat;
he gave them the grain of heaven.
25Man ate the food of the mighty ones.
He sent them more than enough to eat.
26He brought the east wind through the sky
and by his strength led forth the south wind.
27He rained down meat on them like dust,
birds as numerous as the sand on the seashores.
28He caused them to fall right in the middle of their camp,
all around their homes.
29They ate until they were beyond full;
he gave them what they desired.
30They were not yet filled up;
their food was still in their mouths
31when the anger of God flared up against them.
He killed some of the strongest of them;
he brought the young men of Israel to their knees.
32Despite all this, they continued to sin,
and did not trust him to do amazing things.
33So he caused them to die unsatisfied
and filled with terror.
34When he struck them down, they sought his favor;
they turned back and longed for God.
35They remembered that God was their protector
and that God Most High was their deliverer.(NET Bible)
2 Tim. 3:1–9
3:1 But understand this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2For people will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3unloving, irreconcilable, slanderers, without self-control, savage, opposed to what is good, 4treacherous, reckless, conceited, loving pleasure rather than loving God. 5They will maintain the outward appearance of religion but will have repudiated its power. So avoid people like these. 6For some of these insinuate themselves into households and captivate weak women who are overwhelmed with sins and led along by various passions. 7Such women are always seeking instruction, yet never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. 8And just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these people—who have warped minds and are disqualified in the faith—also oppose the truth. 9But they will not go much further, for their foolishness will be obvious to everyone, just like it was with Jannes and Jambres.(NET Bible)
–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.