Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

King Ahaz learned an important lesson in dealing with an attack of the enemy: you cannot run from the battle! When an army far superior to his own threatened Jerusalem, "the hearts of the king and his people trembled with fear, just as trees shake in a storm" (Isaiah 7:2). But God in His mercy sent the prophet Isaiah to deliver an encouraging message. Through Isaiah God told Ahaz, "This invasion will never happen" (v. 7), and He further instructed the king, saying, "If you want me to protect you, learn to believe what I say" (v. 9).

The enemy's primary weapon is fear. When disaster loomed on the horizon, Ahaz was overcome by fear, but the bold word from the Lord enabled him to remain calm, relaxed, and confident.

Paul said, "Do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord, no matter what happens. Remember the great reward it brings you!" (Hebrews 10:35). And that reward is a "faith that assures our salvation" (v. 39).

When the battle seems overwhelming, what choice do you have but to stand firm? If you turn and run from the enemy, you will not stand at all. Burn the retreat bridge! Your only option is to stand-and when you do, God will fight for you!

Isaiah 6:1-7:25

Isaiah’s Commission

In the year that King UzziahS 2Ch 26:22, 23 died,S 2Ki 15:7 I saw the Lord,S Ex 24:10; S Nu 12:8; Jn 12:41 high and exalted,Isa 52:13; 53:12 seated on a throne;S 1Ki 22:19; S Ps 9:4; S 123:1; S Rev 4:2 and the train of his robeRev 1:13 filled the temple.Above him were seraphim,Eze 1:5; 10:15; Rev 4:8 each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet,Eze 1:11 and with two they were flying.And they were calling to one another:

“Holy, holyS Ex 15:11, holy is the Lord Almighty;Ps 89:8

the whole earthIsa 11:9; 54:5; Mal 1:11 is full of his glory.”S Ex 16:7; Nu 14:21; Ps 72:19; Rev 4:8

At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.S Ex 19:18; S 40:34; Eze 43:5; 44:4; Rev 15:8

“WoeS Isa 5:8 to me!” I cried. “I am ruined!S Nu 17:12; S Dt 5:26 For I am a man of unclean lips,Ex 6:12; Lk 5:8 and I live among a people of unclean lips,Isa 59:3; Jer 9:3-8 and my eyes have seenS Ex 24:10 the King,Ps 45:3; Isa 24:23; 32:1; 33:17; Jer 51:57 the Lord Almighty.”S Job 42:5

Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coalS Lev 10:1; Eze 10:2 in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips;Jer 1:9; Da 10:16 your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.S Lev 26:41; Isa 45:25; Da 12:3; 1Jn 1:7

Then I heard the voiceS Job 40:9; Ac 9:4 of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send?Jer 26:12, 15 And who will go for us?S Ge 1:26

And I said, “Here am I.S Ge 22:1; S Ex 3:4 Send me!”

He said, “GoEze 3:11; Am 7:15; Mt 28:19 and tell this people:

“‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding;

be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’Jer 5:21; S Mt 13:15*; Lk 8:10*

10 Make the heart of this people calloused;S Ex 4:21; Dt 32:15; Ps 119:70

make their ears dull

and close their eyes.Hebrew; Septuagint ‘You will be ever hearing, but never understanding; / you will be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’ / 10 This people’s heart has become calloused; / they hardly hear with their ears, / and they have closed their eyesIsa 29:9; 42:18-20; 43:8; 44:18

Otherwise they might see with their eyes,

hear with their ears,S Dt 29:4; Eze 12:2; Mk 8:18

understand with their hearts,

and turn and be healed.”S Dt 32:39; Mt 13:13-15; Mk 4:12*; Jn 12:40*

11 Then I said, “For how long, Lord?”Ps 79:5

And he answered:

“Until the cities lie ruinedS Lev 26:31; S Jer 4:13

and without inhabitant,

until the houses are left desertedS Lev 26:43; Isa 24:10

and the fields ruined and ravaged,Ps 79:1; S 109:11; Jer 35:17

12 until the Lord has sent everyone far awayS Dt 28:64

and the land is utterly forsaken.S Isa 5:5, 9; 60:15; 62:4; Jer 4:29; 30:17

13 And though a tenth remainsS Isa 1:9; 10:22 in the land,

it will again be laid waste.S Isa 5:6

But as the terebinth and oak

leave stumpsS Job 14:8 when they are cut down,

so the holyS Lev 27:30; S Dt 14:2 seed will be the stump in the land.”S Job 14:7

The Sign of Immanuel

When AhazS 1Ch 3:13 son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, was king of Judah, King RezinS ver 8; S 2Ki 15:37 of Aram2Ch 28:5 and PekahS 2Ki 15:25 son of Remaliahver 5, 9; Isa 8:6 king of Israel marched up to fight against Jerusalem, but they could not overpower it.

Now the house of Davidver 13; S 2Sa 7:11; Isa 16:5; 22:22; Jer 21:12; Am 9:11 was told, “Aram has allied itself withOr has set up camp in EphraimIsa 9:9; Hos 5:3”; so the hearts of Ahaz and his people were shaken,Isa 6:4; Da 5:6 as the trees of the forest are shaken by the wind.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out, you and your son Shear-Jashub,Shear-Jashub means a remnant will return.Isa 10:21-22 to meet Ahaz at the end of the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Launderer’s Field.2Ki 18:17; Isa 36:2Say to him, ‘Be careful, keep calmIsa 30:15; La 3:26 and don’t be afraid.S Ge 15:1; S Dt 3:2; Isa 8:12; 12:2; 35:4; 37:6; Mt 24:6 Do not lose heartS Dt 20:3; S Isa 21:4 because of these two smoldering stubsAm 4:11; Zec 3:2 of firewood—because of the fierce angerIsa 10:24; 51:13; 54:14 of Rezin and Aram and of the son of Remaliah.S 2Ki 15:27Aram, Ephraim and Remaliah’sS ver 1 son have plottedver 2 your ruin, saying,“Let us invade Judah; let us tear it apart and divide it among ourselves, and make the son of Tabeel king over it.”Yet this is what the Sovereign Lord says:Isa 24:3; 25:8; 28:16

“‘It will not take place,

it will not happen,Ps 2:1; Isa 8:10; 14:24; 28:18; 40:8; 46:10; Ac 4:25

for the head of Aram is Damascus,S Ge 14:15

and the head of Damascus is only Rezin.ver 1; Isa 9:11

Within sixty-five years

Ephraim will be too shattered2Ki 17:24; Isa 8:4; 17:1-3 to be a people.

The head of Ephraim is Samaria,S 2Ki 15:29; Isa 9:9; 28:1, 3

and the head of Samaria is only Remaliah’s son.

If you do not standS Ps 20:8; Isa 8:10; 40:8 firm in your faith,2Ch 20:20

you will not stand at all.’”Isa 8:6-8; 30:12-14

10 Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz,11 “Ask the Lord your God for a sign,S Ex 7:9; S Dt 13:2 whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights.Ps 139:8

12 But Ahaz said, “I will not ask; I will not put the Lord to the test.Dt 4:34

13 Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David!S ver 2 Is it not enoughS Ge 30:15 to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patienceS Isa 1:14 of my GodPs 63:1; 118:28; Isa 25:1; 49:4; 61:10 also?14 Therefore the Lord himself will give youThe Hebrew is plural. a sign:S Ex 3:12; S Lk 2:12 The virginOr young womanS Ge 24:43 will conceive and give birth to a son,S Ge 3:15; Lk 1:31 andMasoretic Text; Dead Sea Scrolls son, and he or son, and they will call him Immanuel.Immanuel means God with us.S Ge 21:22; Isa 8:8, 10; Mt 1:23*15 He will be eating curdsS Ge 18:8 and honeyver 22 when he knows enough to reject the wrong and choose the right,16 for before the boy knowsIsa 8:4 enough to reject the wrong and choose the right,Dt 1:39 the land of the two kings you dread will be laid waste.S Dt 13:16; Isa 17:3; Jer 7:15; Hos 5:9, 13; Am 1:3-517 The Lord will bring on you and on your people and on the house of your father a time unlike any since Ephraim broke away1Ki 12:16 from Judah—he will bring the king of Assyria.S ver 20; S 2Ch 28:20

Assyria, the Lord’s Instrument

18 In that dayver 20, 21; S Isa 2:11 the Lord will whistleS Isa 5:26 for flies from the Nile delta in Egypt and for bees from the land of Assyria.Isa 13:519 They will all come and settle in the steep ravines and in the crevicesS Isa 2:19 in the rocks, on all the thornbushesver 25; Isa 17:9; 34:13; 55:13 and at all the water holes.20 In that dayS ver 18 the Lord will useIsa 10:15; 29:16 a razor hired from beyond the Euphrates RiverIsa 11:15; Jer 2:18—the king of Assyriaver 17; 2Ki 18:16; Isa 8:7; 10:5—to shave your head and private parts, and to cut off your beardS 2Sa 10:4 also.S Dt 28:4921 In that day,ver 23; Isa 2:17 a person will keep alive a young cow and two goats.Jer 39:1022 And because of the abundance of the milk they give, there will be curds to eat. All who remain in the land will eat curdsS Ge 18:8 and honey.ver 15; Isa 14:3023 In that day,ver 21 in every place where there were a thousand vines worth a thousand silver shekels,That is, about 25 pounds or about 12 kilogramsSS 8:11 there will be only briers and thorns.S Isa 5:6; Hos 2:1224 Hunters will go there with bow and arrow, for the land will be covered with briersS Isa 5:6 and thorns.25 As for all the hillsHag 1:11 once cultivated by the hoe, you will no longer go there for fear of the briers and thorns;S ver 19 they will become places where cattle are turned loose and where sheep run.S Isa 5:17

Isaiah’s Cleansing and Call

It was in the year King Uzziah diedKing Uzziah died in 740 B.c. that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple.Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew.They were calling out to each other,

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies!

The whole earth is filled with his glory!”

Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke.

Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”

Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs.He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.”

Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”

I said, “Here I am. Send me.”

And he said, “Yes, go, and say to this people,

‘Listen carefully, but do not understand.

Watch closely, but learn nothing.’

10 Harden the hearts of these people.

Plug their ears and shut their eyes.

That way, they will not see with their eyes,

nor hear with their ears,

nor understand with their hearts

and turn to me for healing.”Greek version reads And he said, “Go and say to this people, / ‘When you hear what I say, you will not understand. / When you see what I do, you will not comprehend.’ / For the hearts of these people are hardened, / and their ears cannot hear, and they have closed their eyes— / so their eyes cannot see, / and their ears cannot hear, / and their hearts cannot understand, / and they cannot turn to me and let me heal them.” Compare Matt 13:14-15; Mark 4:12; Luke 8:10; Acts 28:26-27.

11 Then I said, “Lord, how long will this go on?”

And he replied,

“Until their towns are empty,

their houses are deserted,

and the whole country is a wasteland;

12 until the Lord has sent everyone away,

and the entire land of Israel lies deserted.

13 If even a tenth—a remnant—survive,

it will be invaded again and burned.

But as a terebinth or oak tree leaves a stump when it is cut down,

so Israel’s stump will be a holy seed.”

A Message for Ahaz

When Ahaz, son of Jotham and grandson of Uzziah, was king of Judah, King Rezin of SyriaHebrew Aram; also in 7:2, 4, 5, 8. and Pekah son of Remaliah, the king of Israel, set out to attack Jerusalem. However, they were unable to carry out their plan.

The news had come to the royal court of Judah: “Syria is allied with IsraelHebrew Ephraim, referring to the northern kingdom of Israel; also in 7:5, 8, 9, 17. against us!” So the hearts of the king and his people trembled with fear, like trees shaking in a storm.

Then the Lord said to Isaiah, “Take your son Shear-jashubShear-jashub means “A remnant will return.” and go out to meet King Ahaz. You will find him at the end of the aqueduct that feeds water into the upper pool, near the road leading to the field where cloth is washed.Or bleached.Tell him to stop worrying. Tell him he doesn’t need to fear the fierce anger of those two burned-out embers, King Rezin of Syria and Pekah son of Remaliah.Yes, the kings of Syria and Israel are plotting against him, saying,‘We will attack Judah and capture it for ourselves. Then we will install the son of Tabeel as Judah’s king.’But this is what the Sovereign Lord says:

“This invasion will never happen;

it will never take place;

for Syria is no stronger than its capital, Damascus,

and Damascus is no stronger than its king, Rezin.

As for Israel, within sixty-five years

it will be crushed and completely destroyed.

Israel is no stronger than its capital, Samaria,

and Samaria is no stronger than its king, Pekah son of Remaliah.

Unless your faith is firm,

I cannot make you stand firm.”

The Sign of Immanuel

10 Later, the Lord sent this message to King Ahaz:11 “Ask the Lord your God for a sign of confirmation, Ahaz. Make it as difficult as you want—as high as heaven or as deep as the place of the dead.Hebrew as deep as Sheol.

12 But the king refused. “No,” he said, “I will not test the Lord like that.”

13 Then Isaiah said, “Listen well, you royal family of David! Isn’t it enough to exhaust human patience? Must you exhaust the patience of my God as well?14 All right then, the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virginOr young woman. will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’).15 By the time this child is old enough to choose what is right and reject what is wrong, he will be eating yogurtOr curds; also in 7:22. and honey.16 For before the child is that old, the lands of the two kings you fear so much will both be deserted.

17 “Then the Lord will bring things on you, your nation, and your family unlike anything since Israel broke away from Judah. He will bring the king of Assyria upon you!”

18 In that day the Lord will whistle for the army of southern Egypt and for the army of Assyria. They will swarm around you like flies and bees.19 They will come in vast hordes and settle in the fertile areas and also in the desolate valleys, caves, and thorny places.20 In that day the Lord will hire a “razor” from beyond the Euphrates RiverHebrew the river.—the king of Assyria—and use it to shave off everything: your land, your crops, and your people.Hebrew shave off the head, the hair of the legs, and the beard.

21 In that day a farmer will be fortunate to have a cow and two sheep or goats left.22 Nevertheless, there will be enough milk for everyone because so few people will be left in the land. They will eat their fill of yogurt and honey.23 In that day the lush vineyards, now worth 1,000 pieces of silver,Hebrew 1,000 [shekels] of silver, about 25 pounds or 11.4 kilograms in weight. will become patches of briers and thorns.24 The entire land will become a vast expanse of briers and thorns, a hunting ground overrun by wildlife.25 No one will go to the fertile hillsides where the gardens once grew, for briers and thorns will cover them. Cattle, sheep, and goats will graze there.

In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.

Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.

And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.

And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.

Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.

Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar:

And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.

Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.

And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.

10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.

11 Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate,

12 And the Lord have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land.

13 But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten: as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves: so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.

And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it.

And it was told the house of David, saying, Syria is confederate with Ephraim. And his heart was moved, and the heart of his people, as the trees of the wood are moved with the wind.

Then said the Lord unto Isaiah, Go forth now to meet Ahaz, thou, and Shearjashub thy son, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool in the highway of the fuller's field;

And say unto him, Take heed, and be quiet; fear not, neither be fainthearted for the two tails of these smoking firebrands, for the fierce anger of Rezin with Syria, and of the son of Remaliah.

Because Syria, Ephraim, and the son of Remaliah, have taken evil counsel against thee, saying,

Let us go up against Judah, and vex it, and let us make a breach therein for us, and set a king in the midst of it, even the son of Tabeal:

Thus saith the Lord God, It shall not stand, neither shall it come to pass.

For the head of Syria is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is Rezin; and within threescore and five years shall Ephraim be broken, that it be not a people.

And the head of Ephraim is Samaria, and the head of Samaria is Remaliah's son. If ye will not believe, surely ye shall not be established.

10 Moreover the Lord spake again unto Ahaz, saying,

11 Ask thee a sign of the Lord thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above.

12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the Lord.

13 And he said, Hear ye now, O house of David; Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also?

14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

15 Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.

16 For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.

17 The Lord shall bring upon thee, and upon thy people, and upon thy father's house, days that have not come, from the day that Ephraim departed from Judah; even the king of Assyria.

18 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall hiss for the fly that is in the uttermost part of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria.

19 And they shall come, and shall rest all of them in the desolate valleys, and in the holes of the rocks, and upon all thorns, and upon all bushes.

20 In the same day shall the Lord shave with a razor that is hired, namely, by them beyond the river, by the king of Assyria, the head, and the hair of the feet: and it shall also consume the beard.

21 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a man shall nourish a young cow, and two sheep;

22 And it shall come to pass, for the abundance of milk that they shall give he shall eat butter: for butter and honey shall every one eat that is left in the land.

23 And it shall come to pass in that day, that every place shall be, where there were a thousand vines at a thousand silverlings, it shall even be for briers and thorns.

24 With arrows and with bows shall men come thither; because all the land shall become briers and thorns.

25 And on all hills that shall be digged with the mattock, there shall not come thither the fear of briers and thorns: but it shall be for the sending forth of oxen, and for the treading of lesser cattle.

2 Corinthians 11:16-33

Paul Boasts About His Sufferings

16 I repeat: Let no one take me for a fool.ver 1 But if you do, then tolerate me just as you would a fool, so that I may do a little boasting.17 In this self-confident boasting I am not talking as the Lord would,1Co 7:12, 25 but as a fool.ver 2118 Since many are boasting in the way the world does,2Co 5:16; 10:4 I too will boast.ver 21; Php 3:3, 419 You gladly put up withS ver 1 fools since you are so wise!1Co 4:1020 In fact, you even put up withS ver 1 anyone who enslaves youGal 2:4; 4:9; 5:1 or exploits you or takes advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face.21 To my shame I admit that we were too weak2Co 10:1, 10 for that!

Whatever anyone else dares to boast about—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast about.ver 17, 18; Php 3:422 Are they Hebrews? So am I.Php 3:5 Are they Israelites? So am I.Ro 9:4; 11:1 Are they Abraham’s descendants? So am I.S Lk 3:8; Ro 11:123 Are they servants of Christ?S 1Co 3:5 (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder,S 1Co 15:10 been in prison more frequently,Ac 16:23; 2Co 6:4, 5 been flogged more severely,Ac 16:23; 2Co 6:4, 5 and been exposed to death again and again.S Ro 8:3624 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashesDt 25:3 minus one.25 Three times I was beaten with rods,Ac 16:22 once I was pelted with stones,Ac 14:19 three times I was shipwrecked,Ac 27:1-44 I spent a night and a day in the open sea,26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews,S Ac 20:3 in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city,Ac 21:31 in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers.Gal 2:427 I have labored and toiledS Ac 18:3; Col 1:29 and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food;1Co 4:11, 12; 2Co 6:5 I have been cold and naked.28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches.S 1Co 7:1729 Who is weak, and I do not feel weak?S Ro 14:1; S 1Co 2:3 Who is led into sin,S Mt 5:29 and I do not inwardly burn?

30 If I must boast, I will boastver 16; Gal 6:14; 2Co 12:5, 9 of the things that show my weakness.S 1Co 2:331 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, who is to be praised forever,Ro 1:25; 9:5 knowsver 11; S Ro 1:9 that I am not lying.32 In Damascus the governor under King Aretas had the city of the Damascenes guarded in order to arrest me.Ac 9:2433 But I was lowered in a basket from a window in the wall and slipped through his hands.Ac 9:25

Paul’s Many Trials

16 Again I say, don’t think that I am a fool to talk like this. But even if you do, listen to me, as you would to a foolish person, while I also boast a little.17 Such boasting is not from the Lord, but I am acting like a fool.18 And since others boast about their human achievements, I will, too.19 After all, you think you are so wise, but you enjoy putting up with fools!20 You put up with it when someone enslaves you, takes everything you have, takes advantage of you, takes control of everything, and slaps you in the face.21 I’m ashamed to say that we’ve been too “weak” to do that!

But whatever they dare to boast about—I’m talking like a fool again—I dare to boast about it, too.22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they descendants of Abraham? So am I.23 Are they servants of Christ? I know I sound like a madman, but I have served him far more! I have worked harder, been put in prison more often, been whipped times without number, and faced death again and again.24 Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes.25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea.26 I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not.Greek from false brothers.27 I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.

28 Then, besides all this, I have the daily burden of my concern for all the churches.29 Who is weak without my feeling that weakness? Who is led astray, and I do not burn with anger?

30 If I must boast, I would rather boast about the things that show how weak I am.31 God, the Father of our Lord Jesus, who is worthy of eternal praise, knows I am not lying.32 When I was in Damascus, the governor under King Aretas kept guards at the city gates to catch me.33 I had to be lowered in a basket through a window in the city wall to escape from him.

16 I say again, let no man think me a fool; if otherwise, yet as a fool receive me, that I may boast myself a little.

17 That which I speak, I speak it not after the Lord, but as it were foolishly, in this confidence of boasting.

18 Seeing that many glory after the flesh, I will glory also.

19 For ye suffer fools gladly, seeing ye yourselves are wise.

20 For ye suffer, if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a man take of you, if a man exalt himself, if a man smite you on the face.

21 I speak as concerning reproach, as though we had been weak. Howbeit whereinsoever any is bold, (I speak foolishly,) I am bold also.

22 Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I.

23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.

24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.

25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;

26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;

27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

28 Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.

29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not?

30 If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.

31 The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not.

32 In Damascus the governor under Aretas the king kept the city of the damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me:

33 And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands.

Psalm 54:1-7

Psalm 54In Hebrew texts 54:1-7 is numbered 54:3-9.

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskilTitle: Probably a literary or musical term of David. When the Ziphites1Sa 23:19; 26:1 had gone to Saul and said, “Is not David hiding among us?”

Save meS 1Sa 24:15, O God, by your name;Ps 20:1

vindicate me by your might.2Ch 20:6

Hear my prayer, O God;S Ps 4:1; 5:1; 55:1

listen to the words of my mouth.

Arrogant foes are attacking me;Ps 86:14

ruthless peoplePs 18:48; 140:1, 4, 11 are trying to kill meS 1Sa 20:1

people without regard for God.The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here.Ps 36:1

Surely God is my help;S 1Ch 5:20; S Ps 20:2

the Lord is the one who sustains me.S Ps 18:35

Let evil recoilS Dt 32:35; Ps 94:23; Pr 24:12 on those who slander me;

in your faithfulnessPs 89:49; Isa 42:3 destroy them.

I will sacrifice a freewill offeringS Lev 7:12, 16; S Ezr 1:4; S Ps 27:6 to you;

I will praisePs 44:8; 69:30; 138:2; 142:7; 145:1 your name, Lord, for it is good.Ps 52:9

You have delivered mePs 34:6 from all my troubles,

and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes.Ps 59:10; 92:11; 112:8; 118:7

Psalm 54

For the choir director: A psalmHebrew maskil. This may be a literary or musical term. of David, regarding the time the Ziphites came and said to Saul, “We know where David is hiding.” To be accompanied by stringed instruments.

Come with great power, O God, and rescue me!

Defend me with your might.

Listen to my prayer, O God.

Pay attention to my plea.

For strangers are attacking me;

violent people are trying to kill me.

They care nothing for God. Interlude

But God is my helper.

The Lord keeps me alive!

May the evil plans of my enemies be turned against them.

Do as you promised and put an end to them.

I will sacrifice a voluntary offering to you;

I will praise your name, O Lord,

for it is good.

For you have rescued me from my troubles

and helped me to triumph over my enemies.

54 Save me, O God, by thy name, and judge me by thy strength.

Hear my prayer, O God; give ear to the words of my mouth.

For strangers are risen up against me, and oppressors seek after my soul: they have not set God before them. Selah.

Behold, God is mine helper: the Lord is with them that uphold my soul.

He shall reward evil unto mine enemies: cut them off in thy truth.

I will freely sacrifice unto thee: I will praise thy name, O Lord; for it is good.

For he hath delivered me out of all trouble: and mine eye hath seen his desire upon mine enemies.

Proverbs 23:1-3

Saying 7

23 When you sit to dine with a ruler,

note well whatOr who is before you,

and put a knife to your throat

if you are given to gluttony.

Do not crave his delicacies,ver 6-8; Ps 141:4

for that food is deceptive.

23 While dining with a ruler,

pay attention to what is put before you.

If you are a big eater,

put a knife to your throat;

don’t desire all the delicacies,

for he might be trying to trick you.

23 When thou sittest to eat with a ruler, consider diligently what is before thee:

And put a knife to thy throat, if thou be a man given to appetite.

Be not desirous of his dainties: for they are deceitful meat.

Sep 9 Sep 11
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