August 16: No Fear and Full Confidence
Isaiah 33:1–17; Luke 11:37–12:21; Job 8:1–10
Jesus didn’t exactly follow social niceties as a dinner guest. Once again while dining with a Pharisee, He exposed the hypocrisy that was rampant among those religious leaders: “Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but your inside is full of greediness and wickedness” (Luke 11:39). The “woes” He followed with challenged His host and, by extension, the Pharisees in general.
His boldness is a trait He wanted to pass on to His disciples: “But nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, and secret that will not be made known” (Luke 12:2). The gospel message will not be kept secret; the new kingdom is coming into being.
Jesus wanted the disciples to be fearless among people because it is God who is in charge, not the Pharisees; they had built up a false construct of authority. And although they may have exercised authority—they could kill and spread fear—they weren’t ultimately in charge.
God is in charge: “But I will show you whom you should fear: fear the one who has authority, after the killing, to throw you into hell! Yes, I tell you, fear this one! Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten in the sight of God. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered! Do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Luke 12:5–7).
When we’re overwhelmed by rampant sin and evil around us—even in us—it’s comforting to maintain this sure knowledge. It is God who both judges and gives life. If we confess Jesus as God, we have nothing to fear. We can be bold in trials and have confidence in Him.
What confidence do you have in your trials? How can you place your trust in God rather than people?
REBECCA VAN NOORD
- Woe to thee that spoilest, and wast not spoiled: and doest wickedly, and they did not wickedly against thee: when thou shalt cease to spoil, thou shalt be spoiled: when thou shalt make an end of doing wickedly, they shall do wickedly against thee. O Lord, have mercy upon us, we have waited for thee: be thou, which wast their arm in the morning, our help also in time of trouble. At the noise of the tumult, the people fled: at thine exalting the nations were scattered. And your spoil shall be gathered like the gathering of caterpillars: and he shall go against him like the leaping of grasshoppers. The Lord is exalted: for he dwelleth on high: he hath filled Zion with judgment and justice. And there shall be stability of the times, strength, salvation, wisdom, and knowledge: for the fear of the Lord shall be his treasure. Behold, their messengers shall cry without, and the ambassadors of peace shall weep bitterly. The paths are waste: the wayfaring man ceaseth: he hath broken the covenant: he hath contemned the cities: he regardeth no man. The earth mourneth and fainteth: Lebanon is ashamed, and hewn down: Sharon is like a wilderness, and Bashan is shaken and Carmel. Now will I arise, saith the Lord: now will I be exalted, now will I lift up myself. Ye shall conceive chaff, and bring forth stubble: the fire of your breath shall devour you. And the people shall be as the burning of lime: and as the thorns cut up, shall they be burnt in the fire. Hear, ye that are far off, what I have done, and ye that are near, know my power. The sinners in Zion are afraid: a fear is come upon the hypocrites: who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with the everlasting burnings? He that walketh in justice, and speaketh righteous things, refusing gain of oppression, shaking his hands from taking of gifts, stopping his ears from hearing of blood, and shutting his eyes from seeing evil, He shall dwell on high: his defense shall be the munitions of rocks: bread shall be given him, and his waters shall be sure. Thine eyes shall see the King in his glory: they shall behold the land far off. Isaiah 33:1–17
- And as he spake, a certain Pharisee besought him to dine with him: and he went in, and sat down at the table. And when the Pharisee saw it, he marveled that he had not first washed before dinner. And the Lord said to him, Indeed ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup, and of the platter: but the inward part is full of ravening and wickedness. Ye fools, did not he that made that which is without, make that which is within also? Therefore, give alms of those things which you have, and behold, all things shall be clean unto you. But woe be to you, Pharisees: for ye tithe the mine and the rue, and all manner herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to have left the other undone. Woe be unto you, Pharisees: for ye love the uppermost seats in the Synagogues, and greetings in the markets. Woe be unto you, Scribes and Pharisees hypocrites: for ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them, perceive not. Then answered one of the Lawyers, and said unto him, Master, thus saying thou puttest us to rebuke also. And he said, Woe be to you also, ye Lawyers, and said unto him, Master, thus saying thou puttest us to rebuke also. And he said, Woe be unto you also, ye Lawyers: for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers. Woe be to you: for ye build the sepulchers of the Prophets, and your fathers killed them. Truly ye bear witness, and allow the deeds of your fathers: for they killed them, and ye build their sepulchers. Therefore said the wisdom of God, I will send them Prophets and Apostles, and of them they shall slay, and persecute away, That the blood of all the Prophets, shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation, From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zechariah, which was slain between the altar and the Temple: verily I say unto you, it shall be required of this generation. Woe be unto you, Lawyers: for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that came in, ye forbade. And as he said these things unto them, the Scribes and Pharisees began to urge him sore, and to provoke him to speak of many things. Laying wait for him, and seeking to catch something of his mouth, whereby they might accuse him. In the meantime, there gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, so that they trod one another: and he began to say unto his disciples first, Take heed to yourselves of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed: nothing hid, that shall not be known. Wherefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness, it shall be heard in the light: and that which ye have spoken in the ear, in secret places, shall be preached on the houses. And I say unto you, my friends, be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that are not able to do anymore. But I will forewarn you, whom ye shall fear: fear him which after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, him fear. Are not five sparrows bought for two farthings, and yet not one of them is forgotten before God? Yea, and all the hairs of your head are numbered: fear not therefore: ye are more of value than many sparrows. Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man confess also before the Angels of God. But he that shall deny me before men, shall be denied before the Angels of God. And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that shall blaspheme the holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven. And when they shall bring you unto the Synagogues, and unto the rulers and Princes, take no thought how, or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall speak. For the holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour, what ye ought to say. And one of the company said unto him, Master, bid my brother divide the inheritance with me. And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge, or a divider over you? Wherefore he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for though a man have abundance, yet his life standeth not in his riches. And he put forth a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth fruits plenteously. Therefore he thought with himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where I may lay up my fruits? And he said, This will I do, I will pull down my barns, and build greater, and therein will I gather all my fruits, and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years, live at ease, eat, drink, and take thy pastime. But God said unto him, O fool, this night will they fetch away thy soul from thee: then whose shall those things be which thou hast provided? So is he that gathereth riches to himself, and is not rich in God. Luke 11:37–12:21
- Then answered Bildad the Shuhite, and said, How long wilt thou talk of these things? and how long shall the words of thy mouth be as a mighty wind? Doth God pervert judgment? or doth the Almighty subvert justice? If thy sons have sinned against him, and he hath send them into the place of their iniquity, Yet if thou wilt early seek unto God, and pray to the Almighty, If thou be pure and upright, then surely he will awake up unto thee, and he will make the habitation of thy righteousness prosperous. And though thy beginning be small, yet thy latter end shall greatly increase. And though thy beginning be small, yet thy latter end shall greatly increase. Inquire therefore, I pray thee, of the former age, and prepare thyself to search of their fathers. (For we are but of yesterday, and are ignorant: for our days upon earth are but a shadow) Shall not they teach thee and tell thee, and utter the words of their heart? Job 8:1–10
August 14: Being Busy
Isaiah 29:1–30:17; Luke 10:1–42; Job 7:1–10
Sometimes it’s difficult to deal with quiet. For most people, chaos, deadlines, managing multiple schedules, and being “so busy” are a way of life. And if we’re honest with ourselves, we like it. Busyness implies we are special and valued and the work we’re doing is necessary. And we have a desperate need to be valued.
When others failed to recognize Martha’s work—when Mary didn’t hold to the same values—she complained to Jesus. He responded by rebuking her: “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things! But few things are necessary, or only one thing, for Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:41–42).
What is the “better part”? Mary “sat at the feet of Jesus and was listening to his teaching” (Luke 10:39), and Jesus praised her desire to listen and learn. Mary was captivated by the “one thing” that would change the world: Jesus and the kingdom He was ushering in. Jesus showed Martha that she should also give Him this reception—being willing to learn, not anxious about her busy schedule. He asked her to shift her perspective.
Choosing the “better part” doesn’t invalidate the things we’re busy with; indeed, Martha’s work served the needs of others. But the things we do shouldn’t shape our identity. The “one thing” that should shape our identity—the one thing we really need—is Jesus. Ultimately, it’s the desire to know Him and serve Him that should shape our lives. And whatever is not dedicated to that service is not among “the few things [that] are necessary.”
What things are you busy with? Why?
REBECCA VAN NOORD
- Ah altar, altar of the city that David dwelt in: add year unto year: let them kill lambs. But I will bring the altar into distress, and there shall be heaviness and sorrow, and it shall be unto me like an altar. And I will besiege thee as a circle, and fight against thee on a mount, and will cast up ramparts against thee. So shalt thou be humbled, and shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall be as out of the dust: Moreover, multitude of thy strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of strong men shall be as chaff that passeth away: and it shall be in a moment, even suddenly. Thou shalt be visited of the Lord of hosts with thunder, and shaking, and a great noise, a whirlwind, and a tempest, and a flame of a devouring fire. And the multitude of all the nations that fight against the altar, shall be as a dream or vision by night: even all they that make the war against it, and strongholds against it, and lay siege unto it. And it shall be like as an hungry man dreameth, and behold, he eateth: and when he awaketh, his soul is empty: or like as a thirsty man dreameth, and lo, he is drinking, and when he awaketh, behold, he is faint, and his soul longeth: so shall the multitude of all nations be that fight against mount Zion. Stay yourselves and wonder: they are blind, and make you blind: they are drunken, but not with wine: they stagger, but not by strong drink. For the Lord hath covered you with a spirit of slumber, and hath shut up your eyes: the Prophet, and your chief Seers hath he covered. And the vision of them all is become unto you, as the words of a book that is sealed up, which they deliver to one that can read, saying, Read this, I pray thee. Then shall he say, I cannot; for it is sealed. And the book is given unto him that cannot read, saying, Read this, I pray thee. And he shall say, I cannot read. Therefore the Lord said, Because this people come near unto me with their mouth, and honor me with their lips, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me was taught by the precept of men, Therefore behold, I will again do a marvelous work in this people, even a marvelous work, and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord: for their works are in darkness, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us? Your turning of devices shall it not be esteemed as the potter’s clay? for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or the thing formed, say unto him that fashioned it, He had none understanding? Is it not yet but a little while, and Lebanon shall be turned into Carmel? and Carmel shall be counted as a forest? And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness. The meek in the Lord shall receive the joy again, and the poor men shall rejoice in the Holy one of Israel. For the cruel men shall cease, and the scornful shall be consumed: and all that hasted to iniquity shall be cut off: Which made a man to sin in the word, and took him in a snare: which reproved them in the gate, and made the just to fall without cause. Therefore thus saith the Lord unto the house of Jacob, even he that redeemed Abraham: Jacob shall not now be confounded, neither now shall his face be pale. But when he seeth his children, the work of mine hands, in the midst of him, they shall sanctify my Name, and sanctify the Holy one of Jacob, and shall fear the God of Israel. Then they that erred in spirit, shall have understanding, and they that murmured, shall learn doctrine. Woe to the rebellious children, saith the Lord, that take counsel, but not of me, and cover with a covering, but not by my spirit, that they may lay sin upon sin: Which walk forth to go down into Egypt (and have not asked at my mouth) to strengthen themselves with the strength of Pharaoh, and trust in the shadow of Egypt. But the strength of Pharoah shall be your shame, and the trust in the shadow of Egypt your confusion. For his princes were at Zion, and his ambassadors came unto Hanes. They shall be all ashamed of the people that cannot profit them, nor help, nor do them good, but shall be a shame and also a reproach. The burden of the beasts of the South, in a land of trouble and anguish, from whence shall come the young and old lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent against them that shall bear their riches upon the shoulders of the colts, and their treasures upon the bunches of the camels, to a people that cannot profit. For the Egyptians are vanity, and they shall help in vain. Therefore have I cried unto her, Their strength is to sit still. Now go, and write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the last day forever and ever: That it is a rebellious people, lying children, and children that would not hear the Law of the Lord. Which say unto the Seers, See not: and to the Prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things: but speak flattering things unto us: prophesy errors. Depart out of the way: go aside out of the path: cause the Holy one of Israel to cease from us. Therefore thus saith the Holy one of Israel, Because you have cast off this word, and trust in violence, and wickedness, and stay thereupon, Therefore this iniquity shall be unto you as a breach that falleth, or a swelling in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly in a moment. And the breaking thereof is like the breaking of a potter’s pot, which is broken without pity, and in the breaking thereof is not found a shard to take fire out of the hearth, or to take water out of the pit. For thus said the Lord God, the Holy one of Israel, In rest and quietness shall ye be saved: in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength, but ye would not. For ye have said, No, but we will flee away upon horses. Therefore shall ye flee. We will ride upon the swiftest. Therefore shall your persecutors be swifter. A thousand as one shall flee at the rebuke of one: at the rebuke of five shall ye flee, till ye be left as a ship mast upon the top of a mountain, and as a beacon upon an hill. Isaiah 29:1–30:17
- After these things, the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them, two and two before him into every city and place, whither he himself should come. And he said unto them, The harvest is great, but the laborers are few: pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send forth laborers into his harvest. Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves. Bear no bag, neither scrip, nor shoes, and salute no man by the way. And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon him, if not, it shall turn to you again. And in that house tarry still, eating and drinking such things as by them shall be set before you: for the laborer is worthy of his wages. Go not from house to house. But into whatsoever city ye shall enter, if they receive you, eat such things as are set before you, And heal the sick that are there, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come near unto you. But into whatsoever city ye shall enter, if they will not receive you, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say, Even the very dust, which cleaveth on us of your city, we wipe off against you: notwithstanding know this, that the kingdom of God was come near unto you. For I say to you, that it shall be easier in that day for them of Sodom, than for that city. Woe be to thee, Chorazin: woe be to thee, Bethsaida: for if the miracles had been done in you, they had a great while agone repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. Therefore it shall be easier for Tyre, and Sidon, at the judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell. He that heareth you, heareth me: and he that despiseth you, despiseth me: and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me. And the seventy turned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subdued to us through thy Name. And he said unto them, I saw Satan, like lightning, fall down from heaven. Behold, I give unto you power to tread on Serpents, and Scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subdued unto you: but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven. That same hour rejoiced Jesus in the spirit, and said, I confess unto thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and understanding, and hast revealed them to babes: even so, Father, because it so pleased thee. All things are given me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the son is, but the Father: neither who the Father is, save the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him. And he turned to his disciples, and said secretly, Blessed are the eyes, which see that ye see. For I tell you that many Prophets and Kings have desired to see those things, which ye see, and have not seen them: and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them. Then behold, a certain Lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? And he said unto him, What is written in the Law? how readest thou? And he answered and said, Thou shalt love thy Lord God will all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy thought, and thy neighbor as thyself. Then he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. But he willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, Who is then my neighbor? And Jesus answered, and said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, and they robbed him of his raiment, nd wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead. Now so it fell out, that there came down a certain Priest that same way, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise also a Levite, when he was come near to the place, went and looked on him, and passed by on the other side. Then a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came near unto him, and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds and poured in oil and wine, and put him on his own beast, and brought him to an Inn, and made provision for him. And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him, and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will recompense thee. Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbor unto him that fell among the thieves? And he said, He that showed mercy on him, Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise. Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain town, and a certain woman named Martha, received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his preaching. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Master dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore, that she help me. And Jesus answered, and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou carest, and art troubled about many things: But one thing is needful, Mary hath chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her. Luke 10:1–42
- Is there not an appointed time to man upon earth? and are not his days as the days of an hireling? As a servant longeth for the shadow, and as an hireling looketh for the end of his work. So have I had as an inheritance the months of vanity, and painful nights have been appointed unto me. If I laid me down, I said, When shall I arise? and measuring the evening, I am even full with tossing to and fro unto the drawing of the day. My flesh is clothed with worms and filthiness of the dust: my skin is rent, and become horrible. My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and they are spent without hope. Remember that my life is but a wine, and that mine eye shall not return to see pleasure. The eye that hath seen me, shall see me no more: thine eyes are upon me, and I shall no longer. As the cloud vanisheth and goeth away, so he that goeth down to the grave, shall come up no more. He shall return no more to his house, neither shall his place know him anymore. Job 7:1–10
August 12: At a Great Price
Isaiah 25:1–26:21; Luke 9:1–27; Job 6:1–13
It’s easy to be devoted to a leader or a vision when it doesn’t require much of us. In following Jesus, the disciples didn’t have that option. They were called to follow Jesus in difficult circumstances—ones that required them to put their lives on the line. After Jesus told His disciples about His impending death and resurrection, He defined the true meaning of discipleship. His words required their immediate response and intense loyalty:
“And he said to them all, ‘If anyone wants to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross every day and follow me’ ” (Luke 9:23).
Daily the disciples needed to commit to Him, the kingdom He was ushering in, and the possibility of facing death. We like to quote this verse, but we might not think it applies in the same way today. Because we don’t face the same circumstances the disciples faced, we might not take the call to loyalty quite as seriously.
But loyalty shouldn’t be dictated by circumstance. Jesus had “to suffer many things and to be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and to be killed” (Luke 9:22) to reconcile us to God. His sacrifice was incredibly costly; the grace extended to us came at a great price.
His sacrifice—not our circumstances—requires everything from us. It requires that we see our motives, our hopes, our actions—our daily lives—in the perspective of that costly grace. Jesus went on to say, “For what is a person benefited if he gains the whole world but loses or forfeits himself?” (Luke 9:25). The gospel changes everything, and it speaks into every area of our lives. It requires us to deny our own interests. It requires us to take up our cross daily and follow Him.
How are you taking up your cross daily? What area of your life do you need to commit to Him?
REBECCA VAN NOORD
- O Lord, thou art my God: I will exalt thee, I will praise thy Name: for thou hast done wonderful things, according to the counsels of old, with a stable truth. For thou hast made of a city an heap, of a strong city, a ruin: even the place of strangers of a city, it shall never be built. Therefore shall the mighty people give glory unto thee: the city of the strong nations shall fear thee. For thou hast been a strength unto the poor, even a strength to the needy in his trouble, a refuge against the tempest, a shadow against the heat: for the blast of the mighty is like a storm against the wall. Thou shalt bring down the noise of the strangers, as the heat in a dry place; he will bring down the song of the mighty, as the heat in the shadow of a cloud. And in this mountain shall the Lord of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, even a feast of fined wines, and of fat things full of marrow, of wines fined and purified. And he will destroy in this mountain the covering that covereth all people, and the veil that is spread upon all nations. He will destroy death forever: and the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces, and the rebuke of his people will he take away out of all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it. And in that day shall men say, Lo, this is our God: we have waited for him, and he will save us. This is the Lord, we have waited for him, we will rejoice and be joyful in salvation. For this mountain shall the hand of the Lord rest, and Moab shall be threshed under hi even as straw is threshed in Madmenah. And he shall stretch out his hand in the midst of them (as he that swimmeth stretcheth them out to swim) and with the strength of his hands shall he bring down their pride. The defense also of the height of thy walls shall he bring down and lay low, and cast them to the ground, even unto the dust. In that day shall this song be sung in the land of Judah, We have a strong city: salvation shall God set for walls and bulwarks. Open ye the gates that the righteous nation, which keepeth the truth, may enter in. By an assured purpose wilt thou preserve perfect peace, because they trusted in thee. Trust in the Lord forever: for in the Lord God is strength forevermore. For he will bring down them that dwell on high: the high city he will abase: even unto the ground will he cast it down, and bring it unto dust. The foot shall tread it down, even the feet of the poor, and the steps of the needy. The way of the just is righteousness: thou wilt make equal the righteous path of the just. Also we, O Lord, have waited for thee in the way of thy judgments: the desire of our soul is to thy Name, and to the remembrance of thee. With my soul have I desired thee in the night, and with my spirit within me will I seek thee in the morning: for seeing thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world shall learn righteousness. Let mercy be showed to the wicked, yet he will not learn righteousness: in the land of uprightness will he do wickedly, and will not behold the majesty of the Lord. O Lord, they will not behold thine high hand: but they shall see it, and be confounded with the zeal of the people, and the fire of mine enemies shall devour them. Lord unto us thou wilt ordain peace: for thou also hast wrought all our works for us. O Lord our God, other lords beside thee, have ruled us, but we will remember thee only, and thy Name. The dead shall not live, neither shall the dead arise, because thou hast visited and scattered them, and destroyed all their memory. Thou hast increased the nation, O Lord: thou hast increased the nation: thou art made glorious, thou hast enlarged all the coasts of the earth. Lord, in trouble have they visited thee: they poured out a prayer when they chastening was upon them. Like as a woman with child, that draweth near to the travail, is in sorrow, and crieth in her pains, so have we been in thy sight, O Lord. We have conceived, we have born in pain, as though we should have brought forth wind: there was no help in the earth, neither did the inhabitants of the world fall. Thy dead men shall live: even with my body shall they rise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead. Come, my people: enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors after thee: hide thyself for a very little while, until the indignation pass over. For lo, the Lord cometh out of his place, to visit the iniquity of the inhabitants of the earth upon them: and the earth shall disclose her blood, and shall no more hide her slain. Isaiah 25:1–26:21
- Then called he his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to heal diseases. And he sent them forth to preach the kingdom of God, and to cure the sick. And he said to them, Take nothing to your journey, neither staves, nor scrip, neither bread, nor silver, neither have two coats apiece. And whatsoever house ye enter into, there abide, and thence depart. And how many soever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet for a testimony against them. And they went out, and went through every town preaching the Gospel, and healing everywhere. Now Herod the Tetrarch heard of all that was done by him: and he doubted, because that it was said of some, that John was risen again from the dead: And of some, that Elijah had appeared: and of some, that one of the old Prophets was risen again. Then Herod said, John have I beheaded: who then is this of whom I hear such things? and he desired to see him. And when the Apostles returned, they told him what great things they had done. Then he took them to him, and went aside into a solidary place, near to the city called Bethsaida. But when the people knew it, they followed him: and he received them, and spake unto them of the kingdom of God, and healed them that had need to be healed. And when the day began to wear away, the twelve came, and said unto him, Send the people away, that they may go into the towns and villages round about, and lodge, and get meat: for we are here in a desert place. But he said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they said, We have no more but five loaves and two fishes, except we should go and buy meat for all this people. For they were about five thousand men. Then he said to his disciples, Cause them to sit down by fifties in a company. And they did so, and caused all to sit down. Then he took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looked up to heaven, and blessed them, twelve baskets full of broken meat. And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am? They answered, and said, John Baptist: and others say, Elijah: and some say, that one of the old Prophets is risen again. And he said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answered, and said: That Christ of God. And he warned and commanded them, that they should tell that to no man, Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be reproved of the Elders, and of the high Priests and Scribes, and be slain, and the third day rise again. And he said to them, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life, shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what advantageth it a man, if he win the whole world, and destroy himself, or lose himself? For whosoever shall be ashamed of me, and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his glory, and in the glory of the Father, and of the holy Angels. Luke 9:1–27
- But Job answered and said, Oh that my grief were well weighed, and my miseries were laid in the balance! For it would be no heavier than the sand of the sea: therefore my words are swallowed up. For the arrows of the Almighty are in me, the venom whereof doth drink up my spirit, and the terrors of God fight against me. Doth the wild ass bray when he hath grass? or loweth the ox when he hath fodder? That which is unsavory, shall it be eaten without salt? or is there any taste in the white of an egg? Such thing as my soul refused to touch, as were sorrows, are my meat. Oh that I might have my desire, and that God would grant me the thing that I long for! That is, that God would destroy me: that he would let his hand go, and cut me off. Then should I yet have comfort, (though I burn with sorrow, let him not spare) because I have not denied the words of the Holy one. What power have I that I should endure? or what is mine end, if I should prolong my life? Is my strength the strength of stones? or is my flesh of brass? Is it not so, that there is in me no help? and that strength is taken from me? He that is in misery, ought to be comforted of his neighbor: but men have forsaken the fear of the Almighty. My brethren have deceived me as a brook, and as the rising of the rivers they pass away. Which are blackish with ice, and wherein the snow is hid. But in time they are dried up with heat and are consumed: and when it is hot they fail out of their places, Job 6:1–13