1 Timothy 2 (Listen)

Pray for All People

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time. For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, 10 but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works. 11 Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve; 14 and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. 15 Yet she will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith and love and holiness, with self-control.

(ESV)

Isaiah 40 (Listen)

Comfort for God's People

  Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.
  Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
    and cry to her
  that her warfare is ended,
    that her iniquity is pardoned,
  that she has received from the LORD's hand
    double for all her sins.
  A voice cries:
  “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD;
    make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
  Every valley shall be lifted up,
    and every mountain and hill be made low;
  the uneven ground shall become level,
    and the rough places a plain.
  And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed,
    and all flesh shall see it together,
    for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”

The Word of God Stands Forever

  A voice says, “Cry!”
    And I said, “What shall I cry?”
  All flesh is grass,
    and all its beauty is like the flower of the field.
  The grass withers, the flower fades
    when the breath of the LORD blows on it;
    surely the people are grass.
  The grass withers, the flower fades,
    but the word of our God will stand forever.

The Greatness of God

  Go on up to a high mountain,
    O Zion, herald of good news;
  lift up your voice with strength,
    O Jerusalem, herald of good news;
    lift it up, fear not;
  say to the cities of Judah,
    “Behold your God!”
10   Behold, the Lord GOD comes with might,
    and his arm rules for him;
  behold, his reward is with him,
    and his recompense before him.
11   He will tend his flock like a shepherd;
    he will gather the lambs in his arms;
  he will carry them in his bosom,
    and gently lead those that are with young.
12   Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand
    and marked off the heavens with a span,
  enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure
    and weighed the mountains in scales
    and the hills in a balance?
13   Who has measured the Spirit of the LORD,
    or what man shows him his counsel?
14   Whom did he consult,
    and who made him understand?
  Who taught him the path of justice,
    and taught him knowledge,
    and showed him the way of understanding?
15   Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket,
    and are accounted as the dust on the scales;
    behold, he takes up the coastlands like fine dust.
16   Lebanon would not suffice for fuel,
    nor are its beasts enough for a burnt offering.
17   All the nations are as nothing before him,
    they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness.
18   To whom then will you liken God,
    or what likeness compare with him?
19   An idol! A craftsman casts it,
    and a goldsmith overlays it with gold
    and casts for it silver chains.
20   He who is too impoverished for an offering
    chooses wood that will not rot;
  he seeks out a skillful craftsman
    to set up an idol that will not move.
21   Do you not know? Do you not hear?
    Has it not been told you from the beginning?
    Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?
22   It is he who sits above the circle of the earth,
    and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers;
  who stretches out the heavens like a curtain,
    and spreads them like a tent to dwell in;
23   who brings princes to nothing,
    and makes the rulers of the earth as emptiness.
24   Scarcely are they planted, scarcely sown,
    scarcely has their stem taken root in the earth,
  when he blows on them, and they wither,
    and the tempest carries them off like stubble.
25   To whom then will you compare me,
    that I should be like him? says the Holy One.
26   Lift up your eyes on high and see:
    who created these?
  He who brings out their host by number,
    calling them all by name;
  by the greatness of his might
    and because he is strong in power,
    not one is missing.
27   Why do you say, O Jacob,
    and speak, O Israel,
  “My way is hidden from the LORD,
    and my right is disregarded by my God”?
28   Have you not known? Have you not heard?
  The LORD is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
  He does not faint or grow weary;
    his understanding is unsearchable.
29   He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30   Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
31   but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
  they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.

(ESV)

Proverbs 8 (Listen)

The Blessings of Wisdom

  Does not wisdom call?
    Does not understanding raise her voice?
  On the heights beside the way,
    at the crossroads she takes her stand;
  beside the gates in front of the town,
    at the entrance of the portals she cries aloud:
  “To you, O men, I call,
    and my cry is to the children of man.
  O simple ones, learn prudence;
    O fools, learn sense.
  Hear, for I will speak noble things,
    and from my lips will come what is right,
  for my mouth will utter truth;
    wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
  All the words of my mouth are righteous;
    there is nothing twisted or crooked in them.
  They are all straight to him who understands,
    and right to those who find knowledge.
10   Take my instruction instead of silver,
    and knowledge rather than choice gold,
11   for wisdom is better than jewels,
    and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.
12   “I, wisdom, dwell with prudence,
    and I find knowledge and discretion.
13   The fear of the LORD is hatred of evil.
  Pride and arrogance and the way of evil
    and perverted speech I hate.
14   I have counsel and sound wisdom;
    I have insight; I have strength.
15   By me kings reign,
    and rulers decree what is just;
16   by me princes rule,
    and nobles, all who govern justly.
17   I love those who love me,
    and those who seek me diligently find me.
18   Riches and honor are with me,
    enduring wealth and righteousness.
19   My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold,
    and my yield than choice silver.
20   I walk in the way of righteousness,
    in the paths of justice,
21   granting an inheritance to those who love me,
    and filling their treasuries.
22   “The LORD possessed me at the beginning of his work,
    the first of his acts of old.
23   Ages ago I was set up,
    at the first, before the beginning of the earth.
24   When there were no depths I was brought forth,
    when there were no springs abounding with water.
25   Before the mountains had been shaped,
    before the hills, I was brought forth,
26   before he had made the earth with its fields,
    or the first of the dust of the world.
27   When he established the heavens, I was there;
    when he drew a circle on the face of the deep,
28   when he made firm the skies above,
    when he established the fountains of the deep,
29   when he assigned to the sea its limit,
    so that the waters might not transgress his command,
  when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
30     then I was beside him, like a master workman,
  and I was daily his delight,
    rejoicing before him always,
31   rejoicing in his inhabited world
    and delighting in the children of man.
32   “And now, O sons, listen to me:
    blessed are those who keep my ways.
33   Hear instruction and be wise,
    and do not neglect it.
34   Blessed is the one who listens to me,
    watching daily at my gates,
    waiting beside my doors.
35   For whoever finds me finds life
    and obtains favor from the LORD,
36   but he who fails to find me injures himself;
    all who hate me love death.”

(ESV)

Psalm 132 (Listen)

The Lord Has Chosen Zion

A Song of Ascents.

  Remember, O LORD, in David's favor,
    all the hardships he endured,
  how he swore to the LORD
    and vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob,
  “I will not enter my house
    or get into my bed,
  I will not give sleep to my eyes
    or slumber to my eyelids,
  until I find a place for the LORD,
    a dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
  Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah;
    we found it in the fields of Jaar.
  “Let us go to his dwelling place;
    let us worship at his footstool!”
  Arise, O LORD, and go to your resting place,
    you and the ark of your might.
  Let your priests be clothed with righteousness,
    and let your saints shout for joy.
10   For the sake of your servant David,
    do not turn away the face of your anointed one.
11   The LORD swore to David a sure oath
    from which he will not turn back:
  “One of the sons of your body
    I will set on your throne.
12   If your sons keep my covenant
    and my testimonies that I shall teach them,
  their sons also forever
    shall sit on your throne.”
13   For the LORD has chosen Zion;
    he has desired it for his dwelling place:
14   “This is my resting place forever;
    here I will dwell, for I have desired it.
15   I will abundantly bless her provisions;
    I will satisfy her poor with bread.
16   Her priests I will clothe with salvation,
    and her saints will shout for joy.
17   There I will make a horn to sprout for David;
    I have prepared a lamp for my anointed.
18   His enemies I will clothe with shame,
    but on him his crown will shine.”

(ESV)