Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

Three basic factors contribute to the destruction of a society, and Sodom had them all! Sodom was destroyed because its citizens were proud, lazy, and gluttonous.

When a people become proud, their intellects excuse them from standards of basic decency. The Sodomites grew so proud and arrogant that they thought they could leave the natural order of sexuality and engage in homosexuality. God, however, viewed their perverted ways as "loathsome" (Ezekiel 16:50).

In addition to being proud, the people of Sodom were lazy and unconcerned about others. Being so self-centered, they had little to do with their time. People who are bored and unconcerned about others gradually begin to live for pleasure.

Finally, the inhabitants of Sodom were overfed gluttons. They had so much bread and food that their entire lifestyle revolved around eating and pleasure. Though, of course, we need food, it is never to be the focus of our lives. As Christians, we should "eat to live," not "live to eat"!

How can we guard against these three deadly diseases of society? We must continually humble ourselves in prayer before God. We must then work for the Kingdom of God, showing concern for and compassion to others and not just living for pleasure. We must regularly fast to remind ourselves that man shall not live by bread alone.

Prayer, godly work, and fasting are the "salt" that will preserve against the rot of condemned societies of the past.

Ezekiel 16:42-17:24

42 Then my wrath against you will subside and my jealous anger will turn away from you; I will be calm and no longer angry.2Sa 24:25; Isa 40:1-2; 54:9; S Eze 5:13; 39:29

43 “‘Because you did not rememberS Ex 15:24; Ps 78:42 the days of your youth but enraged me with all these things, I will surely bring downEze 22:31 on your head what you have done, declares the Sovereign Lord. Did you not add lewdness to all your other detestable practices?Eze 11:21

44 “‘Everyone who quotes proverbsS Ps 49:4 will quote this proverb about you: “Like mother, like daughter.”45 You are a true daughter of your mother, who despisedS Eze 14:5 her husbandJer 44:19 and her children; and you are a true sister of your sisters, who despised their husbands and their children. Your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite.ver 3; Eze 23:246 Your older sisterS Jer 3:7 was Samaria, who lived to the north of you with her daughters; and your younger sister, who lived to the south of you with her daughters, was Sodom.Ge 13:10-13; S 18:20; Jer 3:8-11; Eze 23:4; Rev 11:847 You not only followed their ways and copied their detestable practices, but in all your ways you soon became more depraved than they.S Eze 5:748 As surely as I live, declares the SovereignS Ge 15:2 Lord, your sister SodomS Ge 19:25 and her daughters never did what you and your daughters have done.Mt 10:15; 11:23-24

49 “‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom:S Isa 1:10 She and her daughters were arrogant,Ps 138:6; Eze 28:2 overfed and unconcerned;Isa 22:13 they did not help the poor and needy.S Ge 13:13; 19:9; S Jer 5:28; Eze 18:7, 12, 16; Am 6:4-6; Lk 12:16-20; 16:19; Jas 5:550 They were haughtyPs 18:27 and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.Ge 18:20-21; S 19:551 Samaria did not commit half the sins you did. You have done more detestable things than they, and have made your sisters seem righteous by all these things you have done.Jer 3:8-11; Eze 5:6-7; 23:1152 Bear your disgrace, for you have furnished some justification for your sisters. Because your sins were more vile than theirs, they appear more righteousS Jer 3:11 than you. So then, be ashamed and bearEze 23:35 your disgrace, for you have made your sisters appear righteous.

53 “‘However, I will restoreS Dt 30:3; Isa 19:24-25; S Jer 48:47 the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters and of Samaria and her daughters, and your fortunes along with them,Eze 39:2554 so that you may bear your disgraceS Jer 2:26 and be ashamed of all you have done in giving them comfort.55 And your sisters, Sodom with her daughters and Samaria with her daughters, will return to what they were before; and you and your daughters will return to what you were before.Eze 36:11; Mal 3:456 You would not even mention your sister Sodom in the day of your pride,57 before your wickedness was uncovered. Even so, you are now scornedS Ps 137:3 by the daughters of EdomMany Hebrew manuscripts and Syriac; most Hebrew manuscripts, Septuagint and Vulgate Aram2Ki 16:6 and all her neighbors and the daughters of the Philistines—all those around you who despise you.58 You will bear the consequences of your lewdness and your detestable practices, declares the Lord.Eze 23:49

59 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will deal with you as you deserve, because you have despised my oath by breaking the covenant.S ver 8; Eze 17:1960 Yet I will remember the covenantS Ge 6:18; S 9:15 I made with you in the days of your youth,S Ps 25:7; S Jer 2:2 and I will establish an everlasting covenantS Ge 9:16; Eze 37:26 with you.61 Then you will remember your ways and be ashamedver 63; Eze 20:43; 43:10; 44:13 when you receive your sisters, both those who are older than you and those who are younger. I will give them to you as daughters,S Isa 43:6 but not on the basis of my covenant with you.62 So I will establish my covenantS Dt 29:14 with you, and you will know that I am the Lord.S Jer 24:7; Eze 20:37, 43-44; 34:25; 37:26; Hos 2:19-2063 Then, when I make atonementPs 65:3; 78:38; 79:9 for you for all you have done, you will remember and be ashamedEze 36:31-32 and never again open your mouthRo 3:19 because of your humiliation, declares the Sovereign Lord.Ps 39:9; Da 9:7-8’”

Two Eagles and a Vine

17 The word of the Lord came to me:“Son of man, set forth an allegory and tell it to the Israelites as a parable.S Jdg 14:12; S Eze 20:49Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: A great eagleS Dt 28:49; Jer 49:22; Da 7:4; Hos 8:1 with powerful wings, long feathers and full plumage of varied colors came to Lebanon.S Jer 22:23 Taking hold of the top of a cedar,he broke offS Isa 10:33 its topmost shoot and carried it away to a land of merchants, where he planted it in a city of traders.

“‘He took one of the seedlings of the land and put it in fertile soil. He planted it like a willow by abundant water,Dt 8:7-9; Ps 1:3; Isa 44:4; Eze 31:5and it sprouted and became a low, spreading vine. Its branchesS Isa 18:5 turned toward him, but its roots remained under it. So it became a vine and produced branches and put out leafy boughs.S Job 5:3

“‘But there was another great eagle with powerful wings and full plumage. The vine now sent out its roots toward him from the plot where it was planted and stretched out its branches to him for water.Eze 31:4It had been planted in good soil by abundant water so that it would produce branches,Job 18:19; Mal 4:1 bear fruit and become a splendid vine.’

“Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Will it thrive? Will it not be uprooted and stripped of its fruit so that it withers? All its new growth will wither. It will not take a strong arm or many people to pull it up by the roots.Jer 42:10; Am 2:910 It has been planted,S Job 1:19; Hos 12:1; 13:15 but will it thrive? Will it not wither completely when the east wind strikes it—wither away in the plot where it grew?S Eze 15:4’”

11 Then the word of the Lord came to me:12 “Say to this rebellious people, ‘Do you not know what these things mean?S Eze 12:9’ Say to them: ‘The king of Babylon went to Jerusalem and carried off her king and her nobles,S 2Ki 24:15 bringing them back with him to Babylon.S Dt 21:10; S 2Ch 36:10; Eze 24:1913 Then he took a member of the royal family and made a treatyS Ex 23:32; S Jer 37:1 with him, putting him under oath.2Ch 36:13 He also carried away the leading menIsa 3:2 of the land,14 so that the kingdom would be brought low,Eze 29:14 unable to rise again, surviving only by keeping his treaty.15 But the king rebelledJer 52:3 against him by sending his envoys to EgyptS Isa 30:2; S Jer 37:5 to get horses and a large army.S Dt 17:16 Will he succeed? Will he who does such things escape? Will he break the treaty and yet escape?S Ps 56:7; S Isa 30:5; Jer 34:3; 38:18; Eze 29:16

16 “‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, he shall dieS Jer 52:11; Eze 12:13 in Babylon, in the land of the king who put him on the throne, whose oath he despised and whose treaty he broke.S 2Ki 24:1717 PharaohJer 37:7 with his mighty army and great horde will be of no help to him in war, when rampsS Eze 4:2 are built and siege works erected to destroy many lives.S Isa 36:6; Jer 37:5; Eze 29:6-718 He despised the oath by breaking the covenant. Because he had given his hand in pledgeS 2Ki 10:15; 1Ch 29:24 and yet did all these things, he shall not escape.

19 “‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: As surely as I live, I will repay him for despising my oath and breaking my covenant.Jer 7:9; S Eze 16:59; 21:23; Hos 10:420 I will spread my netS Eze 12:13; 32:3 for him, and he will be caught in my snare. I will bring him to Babylon and execute judgmentS Jer 2:35 on him there because he was unfaithfulS Eze 15:8 to me.21 All his choice troops will fall by the sword,S Eze 12:14 and the survivors2Ki 25:11 will be scattered to the winds.S Lev 26:33; S 2Ki 25:5; Zec 2:6 Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken.S Jer 27:8

22 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will take a shootS 2Ki 19:30; S Isa 4:2 from the very top of a cedar and plant it; I will break off a tender sprig from its topmost shoots and plant it on a high and lofty mountain.ver 23; Isa 2:2; S Jer 23:5; Eze 20:40; 36:1, 36; 37:22; 40:2; 43:1223 On the mountain heightsS ver 22; S Jer 31:12 of Israel I will plant it; it will produce branches and bear fruitS Isa 27:6 and become a splendid cedar. Birds of every kind will nest in it; they will find shelter in the shade of its branches.Ps 92:12; S Isa 2:2; Eze 31:6; Da 4:12; Hos 14:5-7; S Mt 13:3224 All the trees of the forestS Ps 96:12; Isa 2:13 will know that I the Lord bring downS Ps 52:5 the tall tree and make the low tree grow tall. I dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish.S Nu 17:8; Da 5:21

“‘I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it.S 1Sa 2:7-8; Eze 19:12; 21:26; 22:14; 37:13; Am 9:11’”

42 “Then at last my fury against you will be spent, and my jealous anger will subside. I will be calm and will not be angry with you anymore.43 But first, because you have not remembered your youth but have angered me by doing all these evil things, I will fully repay you for all of your sins, says the Sovereign Lord. For you have added lewd acts to all your detestable sins.44 Everyone who makes up proverbs will say of you, ‘Like mother, like daughter.’45 For your mother loathed her husband and her children, and so do you. And you are exactly like your sisters, for they despised their husbands and their children. Truly your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite.

46 “Your older sister was Samaria, who lived with her daughters in the north. Your younger sister was Sodom, who lived with her daughters in the south.47 But you have not merely sinned as they did. You quickly surpassed them in corruption.48 As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, Sodom and her daughters were never as wicked as you and your daughters.49 Sodom’s sins were pride, gluttony, and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door.50 She was proud and committed detestable sins, so I wiped her out, as you have seen.As in a few Hebrew manuscripts and Greek version; Masoretic Text reads as I have seen.

51 “Even Samaria did not commit half your sins. You have done far more detestable things than your sisters ever did. They seem righteous compared to you.52 Shame on you! Your sins are so terrible that you make your sisters seem righteous, even virtuous.

53 “But someday I will restore the fortunes of Sodom and Samaria, and I will restore you, too.54 Then you will be truly ashamed of everything you have done, for your sins make them feel good in comparison.55 Yes, your sisters, Sodom and Samaria, and all their people will be restored, and at that time you also will be restored.56 In your proud days you held Sodom in contempt.57 But now your greater wickedness has been exposed to all the world, and you are the one who is scorned—by EdomAs in many Hebrew manuscripts and Syriac version; Masoretic Text reads Aram. and all her neighbors and by Philistia.58 This is your punishment for all your lewdness and detestable sins, says the Lord.

59 “Now this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will give you what you deserve, for you have taken your solemn vows lightly by breaking your covenant.60 Yet I will remember the covenant I made with you when you were young, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.61 Then you will remember with shame all the evil you have done. I will make your sisters, Samaria and Sodom, to be your daughters, even though they are not part of our covenant.62 And I will reaffirm my covenant with you, and you will know that I am the Lord.63 You will remember your sins and cover your mouth in silent shame when I forgive you of all that you have done. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!”

A Story of Two Eagles

17 Then this message came to me from the Lord:“Son of man, give this riddle, and tell this story to the people of Israel.Give them this message from the Sovereign Lord:

“A great eagle with broad wings and long feathers,

covered with many-colored plumage,

came to Lebanon.

He seized the top of a cedar tree

and plucked off its highest branch.

He carried it away to a city filled with merchants.

He planted it in a city of traders.

He also took a seedling from the land

and planted it in fertile soil.

He placed it beside a broad river,

where it could grow like a willow tree.

It took root there and

grew into a low, spreading vine.

Its branches turned up toward the eagle,

and its roots grew down into the ground.

It produced strong branches

and put out shoots.

But then another great eagle came

with broad wings and full plumage.

So the vine now sent its roots and branches

toward him for water,

even though it was already planted in good soil

and had plenty of water

so it could grow into a splendid vine

and produce rich leaves and luscious fruit.

“So now the Sovereign Lord asks:

Will this vine grow and prosper?

No! I will pull it up, roots and all!

I will cut off its fruit

and let its leaves wither and die.

I will pull it up easily

without a strong arm or a large army.

10 But when the vine is transplanted,

will it thrive?

No, it will wither away

when the east wind blows against it.

It will die in the same good soil

where it had grown so well.”

The Riddle Explained

11 Then this message came to me from the Lord:12 “Say to these rebels of Israel: Don’t you understand the meaning of this riddle of the eagles? The king of Babylon came to Jerusalem, took away her king and princes, and brought them to Babylon.13 He made a treaty with a member of the royal family and forced him to take an oath of loyalty. He also exiled Israel’s most influential leaders,14 so Israel would not become strong again and revolt. Only by keeping her treaty with Babylon could Israel survive.

15 “Nevertheless, this man of Israel’s royal family rebelled against Babylon, sending ambassadors to Egypt to request a great army and many horses. Can Israel break her sworn treaties like that and get away with it?16 No! For as surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, the king of Israel will die in Babylon, the land of the king who put him in power and whose treaty he disregarded and broke.17 Pharaoh and all his mighty army will fail to help Israel when the king of Babylon lays siege to Jerusalem again and destroys many lives.18 For the king of Israel disregarded his treaty and broke it after swearing to obey; therefore, he will not escape.

19 “So this is what the Sovereign Lord says: As surely as I live, I will punish him for breaking my covenant and disregarding the solemn oath he made in my name.20 I will throw my net over him and capture him in my snare. I will bring him to Babylon and put him on trial for this treason against me.21 And all his best warriorsAs in many Hebrew manuscripts; Masoretic Text reads his fleeing warriors. The meaning is uncertain. will be killed in battle, and those who survive will be scattered to the four winds. Then you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken.

22 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will take a branch from the top of a tall cedar, and I will plant it on the top of Israel’s highest mountain.23 It will become a majestic cedar, sending forth its branches and producing seed. Birds of every sort will nest in it, finding shelter in the shade of its branches.24 And all the trees will know that it is I, the Lord, who cuts the tall tree down and makes the short tree grow tall. It is I who makes the green tree wither and gives the dead tree new life. I, the Lord, have spoken, and I will do what I said!”

42 So will I make my fury toward thee to rest, and my jealousy shall depart from thee, and I will be quiet, and will be no more angry.

43 Because thou hast not remembered the days of thy youth, but hast fretted me in all these things; behold, therefore I also will recompense thy way upon thine head, saith the Lord God: and thou shalt not commit this lewdness above all thine abominations.

44 Behold, every one that useth proverbs shall use this proverb against thee, saying, As is the mother, so is her daughter.

45 Thou art thy mother's daughter, that lotheth her husband and her children; and thou art the sister of thy sisters, which lothed their husbands and their children: your mother was an Hittite, and your father an Amorite.

46 And thine elder sister is Samaria, she and her daughters that dwell at thy left hand: and thy younger sister, that dwelleth at thy right hand, is Sodom and her daughters.

47 Yet hast thou not walked after their ways, nor done after their abominations: but, as if that were a very little thing, thou wast corrupted more than they in all thy ways.

48 As I live, saith the Lord God, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters.

49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.

51 Neither hath Samaria committed half of thy sins; but thou hast multiplied thine abominations more than they, and hast justified thy sisters in all thine abominations which thou hast done.

52 Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou hast committed more abominable than they: they are more righteous than thou: yea, be thou confounded also, and bear thy shame, in that thou hast justified thy sisters.

53 When I shall bring again their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and her daughters, and the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, then will I bring again the captivity of thy captives in the midst of them:

54 That thou mayest bear thine own shame, and mayest be confounded in all that thou hast done, in that thou art a comfort unto them.

55 When thy sisters, Sodom and her daughters, shall return to their former estate, and Samaria and her daughters shall return to their former estate, then thou and thy daughters shall return to your former estate.

56 For thy sister Sodom was not mentioned by thy mouth in the day of thy pride,

57 Before thy wickedness was discovered, as at the time of thy reproach of the daughters of Syria, and all that are round about her, the daughters of the Philistines, which despise thee round about.

58 Thou hast borne thy lewdness and thine abominations, saith the Lord.

59 For thus saith the Lord God; I will even deal with thee as thou hast done, which hast despised the oath in breaking the covenant.

60 Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.

61 Then thou shalt remember thy ways, and be ashamed, when thou shalt receive thy sisters, thine elder and thy younger: and I will give them unto thee for daughters, but not by thy covenant.

62 And I will establish my covenant with thee; and thou shalt know that I am the Lord:

63 That thou mayest remember, and be confounded, and never open thy mouth any more because of thy shame, when I am pacified toward thee for all that thou hast done, saith the Lord God.

17 And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

Son of man, put forth a riddle, and speak a parable unto the house of Israel;

And say, Thus saith the Lord God; A great eagle with great wings, longwinged, full of feathers, which had divers colours, came unto Lebanon, and took the highest branch of the cedar:

He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it into a land of traffick; he set it in a city of merchants.

He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow tree.

And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature, whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs.

There was also another great eagle with great wings and many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the furrows of her plantation.

It was planted in a good soil by great waters, that it might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might be a goodly vine.

Say thou, Thus saith the Lord God; Shall it prosper? shall he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without great power or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof.

10 Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper? shall it not utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the furrows where it grew.

11 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

12 Say now to the rebellious house, Know ye not what these things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is come to Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and the princes thereof, and led them with him to Babylon;

13 And hath taken of the king's seed, and made a covenant with him, and hath taken an oath of him: he hath also taken the mighty of the land:

14 That the kingdom might be base, that it might not lift itself up, but that by keeping of his covenant it might stand.

15 But he rebelled against him in sending his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he prosper? shall he escape that doeth such things? or shall he break the covenant, and be delivered?

16 As I live, saith the Lord God, surely in the place where the king dwelleth that made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant he brake, even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die.

17 Neither shall Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company make for him in the war, by casting up mounts, and building forts, to cut off many persons:

18 Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape.

19 Therefore thus saith the Lord God; As I live, surely mine oath that he hath despised, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head.

20 And I will spread my net upon him, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon, and will plead with him there for his trespass that he hath trespassed against me.

21 And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the sword, and they that remain shall be scattered toward all winds: and ye shall know that I the Lord have spoken it.

22 Thus saith the Lord God; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent:

23 In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell.

24 And all the trees of the field shall know that I the Lord have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the Lord have spoken and have done it.

Hebrews 8:1-13

The High Priest of a New Covenant

Now the main point of what we are saying is this: We do have such a high priest,S Heb 2:17 who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven,S Mk 16:19; S Heb 4:14and who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacleHeb 9:11, 24 set up by the Lord, not by a mere human being.

Every high priestS Heb 2:17 is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices,Heb 5:1; 9:9 and so it was necessary for this one also to have something to offer.Heb 9:14If he were on earth, he would not be a priest, for there are already priests who offer the gifts prescribed by the law.Heb 5:1; 9:9They serve at a sanctuary that is a copyHeb 9:23 and shadowCol 2:17; Heb 10:1 of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warnedHeb 11:7; 12:25 when he was about to build the tabernacle: “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”Exodus 25:40Ex 25:40But in fact the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenantver 8, 13; S Lk 22:20 of which he is mediatorS Gal 3:20 is superior to the old one, since the new covenant is established on better promises.

For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another.Heb 7:11, 18; 10:1But God found fault with the people and saidSome manuscripts may be translated fault and said to the people.:

“The days are coming, declares the Lord,

when I will make a new covenantver 6, 13; S Lk 22:20

with the people of Israel

and with the people of Judah.

It will not be like the covenant

I made with their ancestorsEx 19:5, 6; 20:1-17

when I took them by the hand

to lead them out of Egypt,

because they did not remain faithful to my covenant,

and I turned away from them,

declares the Lord.

10 This is the covenantRo 11:27 I will establish with the people of Israel

after that time, declares the Lord.

I will put my laws in their minds

and write them on their hearts.2Co 3:3; Heb 10:16

I will be their God,

and they will be my people.Eze 11:20; Zec 8:8

11 No longer will they teach their neighbor,

or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’

because they will all know me,Isa 54:13; S Jn 6:45

from the least of them to the greatest.

12 For I will forgive their wickedness

and will remember their sins no more.Heb 10:17Jer. 31:31-34Ro 11:27

13 By calling this covenant “new,”ver 6, 8; S Lk 22:20 he has made the first one obsolete;2Co 5:17 and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.

Christ Is Our High Priest

Here is the main point: We have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven.There he ministers in the heavenly Tabernacle,Or tent; also in 8:5. the true place of worship that was built by the Lord and not by human hands.

And since every high priest is required to offer gifts and sacrifices, our High Priest must make an offering, too.If he were here on earth, he would not even be a priest, since there already are priests who offer the gifts required by the law.They serve in a system of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: “Be sure that you make everything according to the pattern I have shown you here on the mountain.”Exod 25:40; 26:30.

But now Jesus, our High Priest, has been given a ministry that is far superior to the old priesthood, for he is the one who mediates for us a far better covenant with God, based on better promises.

If the first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no need for a second covenant to replace it.But when God found fault with the people, he said:

“The day is coming, says the Lord,

when I will make a new covenant

with the people of Israel and Judah.

This covenant will not be like the one

I made with their ancestors

when I took them by the hand

and led them out of the land of Egypt.

They did not remain faithful to my covenant,

so I turned my back on them, says the Lord.

10 But this is the new covenant I will make

with the people of Israel on that day,Greek after those days. says the Lord:

I will put my laws in their minds,

and I will write them on their hearts.

I will be their God,

and they will be my people.

11 And they will not need to teach their neighbors,

nor will they need to teach their relatives,Greek their brother.

saying, ‘You should know the Lord.’

For everyone, from the least to the greatest,

will know me already.

12 And I will forgive their wickedness,

and I will never again remember their sins.”Jer 31:31-34.

13 When God speaks of a “new” covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear.

Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;

A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.

For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is of necessity that this man have somewhat also to offer.

For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law:

Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.

But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.

For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.

For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.

13 In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.

Psalm 106:13-31

13 But they soon forgotS Ex 15:24 what he had done

and did not wait for his plan to unfold.S Ex 16:28; S Nu 27:21

14 In the desertS Ps 78:40 they gave in to their craving;

in the wildernessS Ps 68:7 they put God to the test.S Ex 17:2; 1Co 10:9

15 So he gave themS Ex 16:13; Ps 78:29 what they asked for,

but sent a wasting diseaseS Nu 11:33 among them.

16 In the camp they grew enviousNu 16:1-3 of Moses

and of Aaron, who was consecrated to the Lord.

17 The earth openedDt 11:6 up and swallowed Dathan;S Ex 15:12

it buried the company of Abiram.S Nu 16:1

18 Fire blazedS Lev 10:2 among their followers;

a flame consumed the wicked.

19 At Horeb they made a calfS Ex 32:4; Ac 7:41

and worshiped an idol cast from metal.

20 They exchanged their glorious GodJer 2:11; Ro 1:23

for an image of a bull, which eats grass.

21 They forgot the GodPs 78:11 who saved them,

who had done great thingsDt 10:21; Ps 75:1 in Egypt,

22 miracles in the land of HamS Ps 78:51

and awesome deedsS Ex 3:20; S Dt 4:34 by the Red Sea.

23 So he said he would destroyS Ex 32:10 them—

had not Moses, his chosen one,

stood in the breachEx 32:11-14; S Nu 11:2; S Dt 9:19 before him

to keep his wrath from destroying them.

24 Then they despisedNu 14:30-31 the pleasant land;S Dt 8:7; S Jer 3:19

they did not believeS Nu 14:11; Heb 3:18-19 his promise.

25 They grumbledS Ex 15:24; Dt 1:27; 1Co 10:10 in their tents

and did not obey the Lord.

26 So he sworeS Nu 14:23; Heb 4:3 to them with uplifted hand

that he would make them fall in the wilderness,S Dt 2:14; Heb 3:17

27 make their descendants fall among the nations

and scatterS Lev 26:33 them throughout the lands.

28 They yoked themselves to the Baal of PeorS Nu 23:28

and ate sacrifices offered to lifeless gods;

29 they aroused the Lord’s angerNu 25:3 by their wicked deeds,S Ps 64:2; 141:4

and a plagueS Nu 16:46; 25:8 broke out among them.

30 But PhinehasS Ex 6:25 stood up and intervened,

and the plague was checked.Nu 25:8

31 This was credited to himS Ge 15:6; S Nu 25:11-13 as righteousness

for endless generationsPs 49:11 to come.

13 Yet how quickly they forgot what he had done!

They wouldn’t wait for his counsel!

14 In the wilderness their desires ran wild,

testing God’s patience in that dry wasteland.

15 So he gave them what they asked for,

but he sent a plague along with it.

16 The people in the camp were jealous of Moses

and envious of Aaron, the Lord’s holy priest.

17 Because of this, the earth opened up;

it swallowed Dathan

and buried Abiram and the other rebels.

18 Fire fell upon their followers;

a flame consumed the wicked.

19 The people made a calf at Mount SinaiHebrew at Horeb, another name for Sinai.;

they bowed before an image made of gold.

20 They traded their glorious God

for a statue of a grass-eating bull.

21 They forgot God, their savior,

who had done such great things in Egypt—

22 such wonderful things in the land of Ham,

such awesome deeds at the Red Sea.

23 So he declared he would destroy them.

But Moses, his chosen one, stepped between the Lord and the people.

He begged him to turn from his anger and not destroy them.

24 The people refused to enter the pleasant land,

for they wouldn’t believe his promise to care for them.

25 Instead, they grumbled in their tents

and refused to obey the Lord.

26 Therefore, he solemnly swore

that he would kill them in the wilderness,

27 that he would scatter their descendantsAs in Syriac version; Hebrew reads he would cause their descendants to fall. among the nations,

exiling them to distant lands.

28 Then our ancestors joined in the worship of Baal at Peor;

they even ate sacrifices offered to the dead!

29 They angered the Lord with all these things,

so a plague broke out among them.

30 But Phinehas had the courage to intervene,

and the plague was stopped.

31 So he has been regarded as a righteous man

ever since that time.

13 They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel:

14 But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert.

15 And he gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.

16 They envied Moses also in the camp, and Aaron the saint of the Lord.

17 The earth opened and swallowed up Dathan and covered the company of Abiram.

18 And a fire was kindled in their company; the flame burned up the wicked.

19 They made a calf in Horeb, and worshipped the molten image.

20 Thus they changed their glory into the similitude of an ox that eateth grass.

21 They forgat God their saviour, which had done great things in Egypt;

22 Wondrous works in the land of Ham, and terrible things by the Red sea.

23 Therefore he said that he would destroy them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them.

24 Yea, they despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word:

25 But murmured in their tents, and hearkened not unto the voice of the Lord.

26 Therefore he lifted up his hand against them, to overthrow them in the wilderness:

27 To overthrow their seed also among the nations, and to scatter them in the lands.

28 They joined themselves also unto Baalpeor, and ate the sacrifices of the dead.

29 Thus they provoked him to anger with their inventions: and the plague brake in upon them.

30 Then stood up Phinehas, and executed judgment: and so the plague was stayed.

31 And that was counted unto him for righteousness unto all generations for evermore.

Proverbs 27:7-9

One who is full loathes honey from the comb,

but to the hungry even what is bitter tastes sweet.

Like a bird that flees its nestIsa 16:2

is anyone who flees from home.

PerfumeS Est 2:12; S Ps 45:8 and incense bring joy to the heart,

and the pleasantness of a friend

springs from their heartfelt advice.

A person who is full refuses honey,

but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.

A person who strays from home

is like a bird that strays from its nest.

The heartfelt counsel of a friend

is as sweet as perfume and incense.

The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.

As a bird that wandereth from her nest, so is a man that wandereth from his place.

Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: so doth the sweetness of a man's friend by hearty counsel.

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