1 John 5 (Listen)

Overcoming the World

Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

Testimony Concerning the Son of God

This is he who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not by the water only but by the water and the blood. And the Spirit is the one who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree. If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater, for this is the testimony of God that he has borne concerning his Son. 10 Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. 11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.

That You May Know

13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. 14 And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.

16 If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death. There is sin that leads to death; I do not say that one should pray for that. 17 All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that does not lead to death.

18 We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him.

19 We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.

20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. 21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols.

(ESV)

Isaiah 23 (Listen)

An Oracle Concerning Tyre and Sidon

The oracle concerning Tyre.

  Wail, O ships of Tarshish,
    for Tyre is laid waste, without house or harbor!
  From the land of Cyprus
    it is revealed to them.
  Be still, O inhabitants of the coast;
    the merchants of Sidon, who cross the sea, have filled you.
  And on many waters
  your revenue was the grain of Shihor,
    the harvest of the Nile;
    you were the merchant of the nations.
  Be ashamed, O Sidon, for the sea has spoken,
    the stronghold of the sea, saying:
  “I have neither labored nor given birth,
    I have neither reared young men
    nor brought up young women.”
  When the report comes to Egypt,
    they will be in anguish over the report about Tyre.
  Cross over to Tarshish;
    wail, O inhabitants of the coast!
  Is this your exultant city
    whose origin is from days of old,
  whose feet carried her
    to settle far away?
  Who has purposed this
    against Tyre, the bestower of crowns,
  whose merchants were princes,
    whose traders were the honored of the earth?
  The LORD of hosts has purposed it,
    to defile the pompous pride of all glory,
    to dishonor all the honored of the earth.
10   Cross over your land like the Nile,
    O daughter of Tarshish;
    there is no restraint anymore.
11   He has stretched out his hand over the sea;
    he has shaken the kingdoms;
  the LORD has given command concerning Canaan
    to destroy its strongholds.
12   And he said:
  “You will no more exult,
    O oppressed virgin daughter of Sidon;
  arise, cross over to Cyprus,
    even there you will have no rest.”

13 Behold the land of the Chaldeans! This is the people that was not; Assyria destined it for wild beasts. They erected their siege towers, they stripped her palaces bare, they made her a ruin.

14   Wail, O ships of Tarshish,
    for your stronghold is laid waste.

15 In that day Tyre will be forgotten for seventy years, like the days of one king. At the end of seventy years, it will happen to Tyre as in the song of the prostitute:

16   “Take a harp;
    go about the city,
    O forgotten prostitute!
  Make sweet melody;
    sing many songs,
    that you may be remembered.”

17 At the end of seventy years, the LORD will visit Tyre, and she will return to her wages and will prostitute herself with all the kingdoms of the world on the face of the earth. 18 Her merchandise and her wages will be holy to the LORD. It will not be stored or hoarded, but her merchandise will supply abundant food and fine clothing for those who dwell before the LORD.

(ESV)

Proverbs 15 (Listen)

  A soft answer turns away wrath,
    but a harsh word stirs up anger.
  The tongue of the wise commends knowledge,
    but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
  The eyes of the LORD are in every place,
    keeping watch on the evil and the good.
  A gentle tongue is a tree of life,
    but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
  A fool despises his father’s instruction,
    but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.
  In the house of the righteous there is much treasure,
    but trouble befalls the income of the wicked.
  The lips of the wise spread knowledge;
    not so the hearts of fools.
  The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD,
    but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.
  The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD,
    but he loves him who pursues righteousness.
10   There is severe discipline for him who forsakes the way;
    whoever hates reproof will die.
11   Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD;
    how much more the hearts of the children of man!
12   A scoffer does not like to be reproved;
    he will not go to the wise.
13   A glad heart makes a cheerful face,
    but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.
14   The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge,
    but the mouths of fools feed on folly.
15   All the days of the afflicted are evil,
    but the cheerful of heart has a continual feast.
16   Better is a little with the fear of the LORD
    than great treasure and trouble with it.
17   Better is a dinner of herbs where love is
    than a fattened ox and hatred with it.
18   A hot-tempered man stirs up strife,
    but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.
19   The way of a sluggard is like a hedge of thorns,
    but the path of the upright is a level highway.
20   A wise son makes a glad father,
    but a foolish man despises his mother.
21   Folly is a joy to him who lacks sense,
    but a man of understanding walks straight ahead.
22   Without counsel plans fail,
    but with many advisers they succeed.
23   To make an apt answer is a joy to a man,
    and a word in season, how good it is!
24   The path of life leads upward for the prudent,
    that he may turn away from Sheol beneath.
25   The LORD tears down the house of the proud
    but maintains the widow’s boundaries.
26   The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the LORD,
    but gracious words are pure.
27   Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household,
    but he who hates bribes will live.
28   The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer,
    but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.
29   The LORD is far from the wicked,
    but he hears the prayer of the righteous.
30   The light of the eyes rejoices the heart,
    and good news refreshes the bones.
31   The ear that listens to life-giving reproof
    will dwell among the wise.
32   Whoever ignores instruction despises himself,
    but he who listens to reproof gains intelligence.
33   The fear of the LORD is instruction in wisdom,
    and humility comes before honor.

(ESV)

Psalm 109 (Listen)

Help Me, O Lord My God

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

  Be not silent, O God of my praise!
  For wicked and deceitful mouths are opened against me,
    speaking against me with lying tongues.
  They encircle me with words of hate,
    and attack me without cause.
  In return for my love they accuse me,
    but I give myself to prayer.
  So they reward me evil for good,
    and hatred for my love.
  Appoint a wicked man against him;
    let an accuser stand at his right hand.
  When he is tried, let him come forth guilty;
    let his prayer be counted as sin!
  May his days be few;
    may another take his office!
  May his children be fatherless
    and his wife a widow!
10   May his children wander about and beg,
    seeking food far from the ruins they inhabit!
11   May the creditor seize all that he has;
    may strangers plunder the fruits of his toil!
12   Let there be none to extend kindness to him,
    nor any to pity his fatherless children!
13   May his posterity be cut off;
    may his name be blotted out in the second generation!
14   May the iniquity of his fathers be remembered before the LORD,
    and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out!
15   Let them be before the LORD continually,
    that he may cut off the memory of them from the earth!
16   For he did not remember to show kindness,
    but pursued the poor and needy
    and the brokenhearted, to put them to death.
17   He loved to curse; let curses come upon him!
    He did not delight in blessing; may it be far from him!
18   He clothed himself with cursing as his coat;
    may it soak into his body like water,
    like oil into his bones!
19   May it be like a garment that he wraps around him,
    like a belt that he puts on every day!
20   May this be the reward of my accusers from the LORD,
    of those who speak evil against my life!
21   But you, O GOD my Lord,
    deal on my behalf for your name’s sake;
    because your steadfast love is good, deliver me!
22   For I am poor and needy,
    and my heart is stricken within me.
23   I am gone like a shadow at evening;
    I am shaken off like a locust.
24   My knees are weak through fasting;
    my body has become gaunt, with no fat.
25   I am an object of scorn to my accusers;
    when they see me, they wag their heads.
26   Help me, O LORD my God!
    Save me according to your steadfast love!
27   Let them know that this is your hand;
    you, O LORD, have done it!
28   Let them curse, but you will bless!
    They arise and are put to shame, but your servant will be glad!
29   May my accusers be clothed with dishonor;
    may they be wrapped in their own shame as in a cloak!
30   With my mouth I will give great thanks to the LORD;
    I will praise him in the midst of the throng.
31   For he stands at the right hand of the needy one,
    to save him from those who condemn his soul to death.

(ESV)