Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 03

Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 03

Jude 1:1-16

Through My Bible – December 03

Jude 1:1-16 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Jude 1

Greeting

Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James,

To those who are called, who are loved [1] in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ:

Mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

Ungodly Teachers Who Slipped In Secretly

Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you concerning the salvation we share, I felt it was necessary for me to write, to urge you to continue to contend for the faith that was delivered to the saints once and for all. For certain individuals slipped in secretly, about whom it was written some time ago that they are condemned. They are ungodly people who turn the grace of our God into a license for sin and deny our only Master [2] and Lord, Jesus Christ.

I want to remind you, though you already know all these things, that after the Lord [3] rescued his people out of the land of Egypt, he later destroyed those who did not believe. And the angels who did not keep their position of authority but left their own dwelling place behind—God has kept them in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day. Like Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, who in a similar way indulged in extreme sexual immorality and pursued homosexual perversion, [4] they serve as an example of those who are going to suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

Yet, in the very same way, these dreamers are defiling the flesh, despising authority, and blaspheming glorious ones. But when the archangel Michael was disputing with the Devil and arguing about the body of Moses, he did not dare to bring a blasphemous condemnation against him. Instead he said, “The Lord rebuke you!”

10 But these people do not understand what they are blaspheming. They are being destroyed by the very things that they know by instinct (like unreasoning animals). 11 Woe to them! They have gone the way of Cain. They have abandoned themselves for hire to the error of Balaam. They perished in Korah’s rebellion.

12 These people are filthy stains on [5] your love feasts when they eat with you without fear, shepherding themselves. They are clouds without rain, being driven along by the winds. They are autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots. 13 They are wild waves of the sea piling up the foam of their own shame. They are wandering stars for whom the gloom of darkness has been reserved for eternity.

14 Enoch, the seventh from Adam, also prophesied about these people, saying, “Look, the Lord is going to come with tens of thousands of his holy ones, 15 to execute judgment against all of them and to convict every soul concerning all their ungodly deeds, which they did in an ungodly way, and concerning all the harsh words that ungodly sinners spoke against him.” 16 These are discontented grumblers, who walk according to their lusts, and their mouths speak boastful things as they flatter others to take advantage of them.

Footnotes

  1. Jude 1:1 A few witnesses to the text read sanctified. (“Witnesses to the text” mentioned in footnotes may include Greek manuscripts, lectionaries, translations, and quotations in the church fathers.)
  2. Jude 1:4 A few witnesses to the text add God.
  3. Jude 1:5 A few witnesses to the text read Jesus.
  4. Jude 1:7 Or went after unnatural flesh. See Genesis 19:4-9.
  5. Jude 1:12 Or hidden hazards at




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 02

Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 02

2 Peter 3:11-18

Through My Bible – December 02

2 Peter 3:11-18 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

2 Peter 3

11 Therefore, [1] since all these things will be destroyed, what kind of people ought you to be, living in holiness and godliness, 12 as you look forward to and hasten the coming of the day of God? That day will cause the heavens to be set on fire and destroyed, and the elements to melt as they burn with great heat. 13 But according to his promise we look forward to new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.

14 Therefore, dear friends, as you look forward to these things, make every effort to be found in peace, spotless and blameless in his sight. 15 Regard the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as also our dear brother Paul wrote to you, according to the wisdom that was given to him. 16 He spoke about these things the same way in all of his letters. There are some matters that are hard to understand in his letters, which the ignorant and unstable distort, as they also do with the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

Conclusion

17 Therefore, dear friends, since you already know these things, be on your guard so that you do not fall from your own firm position by being led astray through the error of the wicked. 18 Instead grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory, both now and forever. Amen.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 3:11 Some witnesses to the text omit Therefore and read in this way after destroyed.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 01

Through My Bible Yr 02 – December 01

2 Peter 3:1-10

Through My Bible – December 01

2 Peter 3:1-10 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

2 Peter 3

The Destruction of the World Is Coming

1 Dear friends, this is now the second letter that I have written to you. I wrote both of them to stir up your sincere mind with a reminder for you to remember the words spoken earlier by the holy prophets and the command of the Lord and Savior through your apostles.

First, know this: In the last days scoffers will come with their mocking, following their own lusts. They will say, “Where is this promised coming of his? For from the time that our fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they have from the beginning of the creation.” You see, what they are intentionally forgetting is that the heavens came into existence long ago by the word of God and that the earth came together out of the water and between the waters. [1] Through these waters the former world perished, when it was flooded with water. And now, by that same word, the heavens and earth have been stored up for fire, since they are being kept until the day of judgment and the destruction of the ungodly. But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: For the Lord, one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day. The Lord is not slow to do what he promised, as some consider slowness. Instead, he is patient for your sakes, [2] not wanting anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance.

Live a Holy Life

10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. [3] On that day the heavens will pass away with a roar, the elements will be dissolved as they burn with great heat, and the earth and what was done on it will be burned up. [4]

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 3:5 See Genesis 1:7; 7:11.
  2. 2 Peter 3:9 Some witnesses to the text read with you; other witnesses read with us.
  3. 2 Peter 3:10 A few witnesses to the text add in the night.
  4. 2 Peter 3:10 Some witnesses to the text read will be exposed.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 30

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 30

2 Peter 2

Through My Bible – November 30

2 Peter 2 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

A Warning About False Teachers

1 There were false prophets also among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their depraved ways, and because of them the way of the truth will be blasphemed. In their greed they will exploit you with fabricated messages. Their condemnation announced long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

God Will Punish These False Teachers

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned but handed them over to chains [1] of darkness by casting them into hell, to be kept under guard for judgment; and if God did not spare the ancient world but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, along with seven others when he brought a flood on the world of ungodly people; and if God condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to destruction, [2] by turning them into ashes when he made them an example of things to come for the ungodly; [3] and if he rescued righteous Lot, who was very distressed by the unrestrained immorality of the wicked people (while that righteous man was living among them, he was tormented in his righteous soul day after day by the lawless deeds he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation and to keep the unrighteous under guard until the day of judgment, in order to punish them.

10 This is especially true of those who follow the defiling lust of the flesh and who despise authority. Daring and arrogant, they do not tremble when they blaspheme glorious beings, 11 whereas angels, even though they are greater in strength and power, do not bring a slanderous judgment against them before the Lord. 12 But these people blaspheme in matters about which they are ignorant, just like unreasoning creatures that live by instinct and are born to be captured and destroyed. So they too will be destroyed as a consequence of their destructive activity. 13 They will be paid back [4] for the harm they cause.

They consider it a pleasure to carouse in the daytime. They are spots and blemishes, who take delight in their deceitful pleasures [5] while they feast with you. 14 They have eyes full of longing for adulterous women and sins that never stop. They seduce unstable souls. They have trained their hearts for greed. They are children who are cursed.

15 They left the right way and went astray, following the path of Balaam, son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness. 16 (He was rebuked for his disobedience. A donkey, which does not talk, spoke with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.) 17 These men are wells without water, clouds driven away by a windstorm, for whom the gloom of darkness has been reserved. [6] 18 For by uttering arrogant, empty words, they use the depraved lusts of the flesh to seduce those who are barely [7] escaping from those who live in error. 19 While they promise these people freedom, they themselves are slaves to corruption, for a person is a slave to what has control of him.

The Tragedy of Being Led Back Into a Sinful Life

20 Indeed, if, after escaping the defiling things of the world through the knowledge of our [8] Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and controlled by them again, they are worse off than they were at first. 21 In fact, it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness than, after knowing it, to turn back from the holy command passed on to them. 22 They demonstrate the truth of the proverb: “A dog returns to its own vomit,” [9] and a washed sow returns to wallowing in the mud.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 2:4 Some witnesses to the text read dungeons.
  2. 2 Peter 2:6 A few witnesses omit to destruction.
  3. 2 Peter 2:6 Some witnesses to the text read an example of the people who are going to be ungodly.
  4. 2 Peter 2:13 A few witnesses to the text read They will suffer harm as the wages.
  5. 2 Peter 2:13 A few witnesses to the text read their love feasts.
  6. 2 Peter 2:17 Some witnesses to the text add forever.
  7. 2 Peter 2:18 Some witnesses to the text read actually.
  8. 2 Peter 2:20 Some witnesses to the text omit our. It would be replaced by the.
  9. 2 Peter 2:22 Proverbs 26:11




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 29

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 29

2 Peter 1:12-21

Through My Bible – November 29

2 Peter 1:12-21 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

2 Peter 1

12 That is why I intend [1] always to keep reminding you of these things, even though you already know them and are established in the truth you now have. 13 I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to keep you wide awake by reminding you, 14 because I know that the putting off of my tent is going to happen soon, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. 15 I will also make every effort so that after my departure you always have a reminder of these things.

We Have God’s Inspired Word

16 To be sure, we were not following cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the powerful appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received honor and glory from God the Father, when the voice came to him from within the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” [2] 18 We heard this voice, which came out of heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.

19 We also have the completely reliable prophetic word. You do well to pay attention to it, as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the Morning Star rises in your hearts, 20 since we know this above all else: No prophecy of Scripture comes about from someone’s own interpretation. 21 In fact, no prophecy ever came by the will of man, but men spoke from God [3] as they were being carried along by the Holy Spirit.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 1:12 A few witnesses to the text read I will not neglect.
  2. 2 Peter 1:17 Matthew 17:5; Mark 9:7; Luke 9:35
  3. 2 Peter 1:21 Some witnesses to the text read holy men of God spoke.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 28

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 28

2 Peter 1:1-11

Through My Bible – November 28

2 Peter 1:1-11 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

2 Peter 1

Greeting

1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained the same kind of faith as ours in the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus [1] our Lord.

Keep on Growing

His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own [2] glory and excellence. Through these he has given us his precious and great promises so that through them you may share in the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that sinful lust causes in the world.

And, for this very reason, after applying every effort, add moral excellence to your faith. To moral excellence, add knowledge. To knowledge, add self-control. To self-control, add patient endurance. To patient endurance, add godliness. To godliness, add brotherly affection. And to brotherly affection, add love. For if you have these qualities and they are increasing, they are going to keep you from being idle or unfruitful in regard to your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Indeed, the person who lacks these qualities is shortsighted and, in fact, blind, because he has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.

Make Your Calling and Election Sure

10 Therefore, brothers, [3] be more eager to make your calling and election sure for yourselves. [4] For if you do these things, you will never stumble. 11 In fact, in this way you will be richly supplied with an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Peter 1:2 Some witnesses to the text add Christ. (“Witnesses to the text” mentioned in footnotes may include Greek manuscripts, lectionaries, translations, and quotations in the church fathers.)
  2. 2 Peter 1:3 Some witnesses to the text omit his own.
  3. 2 Peter 1:10 When context indicates it, the Greek word for brothers may refer to all fellow believers, male and female.
  4. 2 Peter 1:10 Some witnesses to the text add by good works.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 27

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 27

Song of Songs 8:5-14

Through My Bible – November 27

Song of Songs 8:5-14 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Song of Songs 8

The Friends

5a Who is this woman coming up from the wilderness,
    leaning on her lover?

The Wealth of Our House

The Woman

5b Under the apple tree I roused you.
There your mother conceived you.
There she who gave birth to you was in labor.

Place me like a seal over your heart,
like a seal on your arm,
because love is as strong as death.
Its passion is as relentless as the grave.
Its flames are flames of fire, a mighty blaze. [1]
Many waters cannot quench such love.
Rivers cannot wash it away.
If a man were to offer all the wealth
of his house for love,
he would be utterly scorned.

The Brothers. . .Decorated With Silver

The Brothers

We have a little sister.
She has no breasts.
What shall we make for our sister
    on the day she is spoken for?
If she is a wall,
we will build towers of silver on her.
If she is a door,
we will enclose her with panels of cedar.

My Own Vineyard

The Woman

10 I am a wall, and my breasts are like towers.
Thus I have become in his eyes
    like one who delivers contentment.

11 Solomon had a vineyard in Baal Hamon.
He leased his vineyard to tenants.
Each was to bring for its fruit
    a thousand shekels of silver.
12 But my own vineyard is before me.
The thousand shekels are for you, Solomon,
and two hundred are for those who tend its fruit.

The Last Call to Love

The Man

13 You who dwell in the gardens
with friends in attendance,
let me hear your voice!

Run Away With Me

The Woman

14 Run away, my love,
and be like a gazelle,
or like a young buck
on the mountains of spices.

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 8:6 With alternate word division the text may be read the blaze of Yah. Yah is a short form of the divine name often written Yahweh.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 26

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 26

Song of Songs 6:4 – 8:4

Through My Bible – November 26

Song of Songs 6:4 – 8:4 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Song of Songs 6

You Are Beautiful

The Man

You are as beautiful, my darling, as Tirzah, [1]
lovely as Jerusalem,
majestic as troops with banners.

Turn your eyes away from me,
because they arouse me.
Your hair is like a flock of goats
flowing down from Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock of ewes
coming up from the washing.
Each has its twin. Not one of them is alone.
Your cheeks behind your veil
are like the halves of a pomegranate.
There may be sixty queens,
and eighty concubines,
and virgins beyond number,
but my dove, my perfect one, is one of a kind.
She is the only daughter of her mother,
pure to the one who bore her.
The girls saw her and called her blessed.
The queens and concubines also praised her.

The Friends

10 Who is this woman that appears like the dawn,
beautiful as the moon, clear as the sun,
majestic as the stars in procession?

A Puzzling Interlude

The Woman or The Man [2]

11 I went down to the grove of nut trees,
to look at the new growth in the valley,
to see whether the vines had budded,
    whether the pomegranates had blossomed.

12 Before I realized it, my desire set me
among the chariots of my willing people. [3]

Beautiful From Bottom to Top

The Friends

13 Turn back, turn back, O Shulammite.
Turn back, turn back, so that we may look at you! [4]

The Woman [5]

Song of Songs 7

Why would you look at the Shulammite.
    as at the dance of Mahanaim? [6]

The Friends or The Man

How beautiful are your feet in sandals,
    O prince’s daughter!
Your hips are curved like a necklace,
the work of the hands of a craftsman.
Your navel is a round mixing bowl.
It never lacks blended wine.
Your belly is a mound of wheat, encircled by lilies.
Your two breasts are like two fawns,
    twins of a gazelle.
Your neck is like an ivory tower.
Your eyes are the pools in Heshbon,
    by the gate of Bat Rabbim. [7]
Your nose is like the tower of Lebanon,
    overlooking Damascus.
Your head rises above you like Mount Carmel.
The flowing hair of your head is like purple.
The king is captivated by its curls.

The Man

How beautiful you are and how pleasing,
O loved one, daughter of delights! [8]
Your height is like that of the date palm,
and your breasts like clusters of fruit.
I said, “I will climb the date palm.
I will take hold of its bunches of fruit.”
May your breasts be like the clusters of the vine,
the fragrance of your breath like apples,
10a and your mouth like the best wine—

The Woman

10b —flowing to my lover,
gliding smoothly over lips and teeth. [9]
11 I belong to my lover,
and his desire is for me.

12 Come, my lover,
let us go to the fields.
Let us spend the night in the villages.
13 Let us go early to the vineyards.
We will see if the vines have budded,
if their blossoms have opened,
if the pomegranates are in bloom.
There I will give my love to you.
The mandrakes send out their fragrance.
At our door is every delicacy,
new as well as old,
that I have stored up for you, my lover.

He Embraces Me

The Woman

Song of Songs 8

I wish that you were like a brother to me,
who was nursed at my mother’s breasts.
Then if I would meet you in public,
I could kiss you,
and no one would despise me.
I would lead you.
I would bring you to my mother’s house
    where she used to teach me.
I would give you spiced wine to drink,
the juice of my pomegranates.

His left arm is under my head,
and his right arm embraces me.

Daughters of Jerusalem, you must swear
that you will not arouse or awaken love
    until it so desires.

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 6:4 Tirzah is a city in Israel. Its name means delightful.
  2. Song of Songs 6:11 The identity of the speaker of these verses is uncertain.
  3. Song of Songs 6:12 This is a difficult verse of uncertain meaning.
  4. Song of Songs 6:13 English verse 6:13 is 7:1 in Hebrew. In the rest of chapter 7, the English verse numbers are one lower than the Hebrew verse numbers.
  5. Song of Songs 7:1 The identity of the speaker of this verse is uncertain.
  6. Song of Songs 7:1 Mahanaim is the name of a city. It means two camps. Here the term may refer to two lines of dancers.
  7. Song of Songs 7:5 Bat Rabbim means Daughter of Nobles.
  8. Song of Songs 7:7 The translation follows a textual variant supported by the ancient versions. The Hebrew text reads O love, with delights.
  9. Song of Songs 7:10 The reading lips and teeth is well attested by the ancient versions. The Hebrew reads lips of sleepers.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 25

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 25

Song of Songs 5:2 – 6:3

Through My Bible – November 25

Song of Songs 5:2 – 6:3 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Song of Songs 5

At Night. . .the Watchmen

The Woman

I was sleeping but my heart was awake.
A sound! My lover is knocking:
“Open to me, my sister,
my darling, my dove, my perfect one,
because my head is soaked with dew,
my locks with the dampness of the night.”

“I have taken off my robe.
Why should I get dressed again?
I have washed my feet.
Why should I get them dirty again?”

My lover thrust his hand
through the opening in the door.
My feelings were aroused for him.
I arose to open for my lover.
My hands dripped with myrrh,
my fingers with flowing myrrh,
on the handles of the lock.
I opened for my lover,
but my lover had left.
He was gone.
My spirits sank when he left. [1]
I looked for him but did not find him.
I called him, but he did not answer.

The watchmen who patrol the city found me.
They beat me. They bruised me.
They took my shawl away from me,
    those watchmen of the walls!

Daughters of Jerusalem, you must swear to me—
if you find my lover—
what will you tell him?
—that I am sick with love.

The Friends

What makes your lover better than any other lover,
most beautiful of women?
What makes your lover better than any other lover,
that you make us swear in this way?

My Lover Is Radiant

The Woman

10 My lover is radiant and ruddy,
outstanding among ten thousand.
11 His head is the best gold, the purest gold.
His locks are wavy, black as a raven.
12 His eyes are like doves by streams of water.
They are washed in milk.
They are set in sockets.
13 His cheeks are like a bed of spice,
like towers of perfumes.
His lips are lilies, dripping with liquid myrrh.
14 His arms are rods of gold, set with topaz. [2]
His stomach is like polished ivory,
decorated with sapphires. [3]
15 His thighs are pillars of marble, [4]
set on bases of pure gold.
His appearance is like Lebanon,
choice as cedars.
16 His mouth is so sweet.
He is completely desirable.
This is my lover.
This is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.

The Friends

Song of Songs 6

Where has your lover gone,
most beautiful of women?
Where did your lover turn?
We will look for him with you.

I Am His. He Is Mine.

The Woman

My lover has gone down to his garden,
to the beds of spices,
to browse in the gardens,
and to gather lilies.

I am my lover’s, and my lover is mine.
He browses among the lilies.

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 5:6 Or when he spoke
  2. Song of Songs 5:14 The identification of this gem is uncertain.
  3. Song of Songs 5:14 Perhaps lapis lazuli
  4. Song of Songs 5:15 Or alabaster




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 24

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 24

Song of Songs 3:6 – 5:1

Through My Bible – November 24

Song of Songs 3:6 – 5:1 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Song of Songs 3

Who Is This?

The Friends and Other Bystanders

Who is this woman coming up from the wilderness
like columns of smoke,
perfumed with myrrh and with incense,
made from all the fragrant powders of the merchant?

Look! It’s Solomon’s own carriage. [1]
Sixty warriors surround it,
the most heroic of Israel,
all of them wearing a sword,
all trained for battle,
each man with his sword at his side,
ready for the terrors of the night.

This palanquin [2] King Solomon made for himself
    out of wood from Lebanon.
10 Its posts he made of silver.
Its base he made of gold.
Its seat was upholstered with purple.
Its interior was inlaid with love [3]
    by the daughters of Jerusalem.

11 Come out, you daughters of Zion,
and look at King Solomon wearing the crown,
the crown with which his mother crowned him
    on the day of his wedding,
    on the day his heart rejoiced.

Beautiful From Top to Bottom

The Man

Song of Songs 4

Look at you. You are beautiful, my darling!
Look at you. You are beautiful!
Your eyes are doves behind your veil.
Your hair is like a flock of goats
which flows down from Mount Gilead.
Your teeth are like a flock,
ready to be sheared,
which comes up from the washing.
Each is a twin. Not one of them is left by itself.
Your lips are like a scarlet ribbon.
Your mouth is lovely.
Your cheeks behind your veil
are like the halves of a pomegranate.
Like the tower of David,
your neck is adorned with rows of stones. [4]
A thousand shields hang on it,
all of them the equipment of warriors.
Your two breasts are like two fawns,
twins of a gazelle, that browse among the lilies.

Until the day breathes and the shadows flee,
I will go to the mountain of myrrh,
and to the hill of incense.

You are altogether beautiful, my darling.
There is no flaw in you.

Spices and Wine, Milk and Honey

The Man

Come with me from Lebanon, my bride.
With me from Lebanon, come.
Descend from the top of Amana,
from the top of Senir and Hermon,
from the lions’ dens,
and from the mountains of the leopards.

You have stirred my heart, my sister, my bride.
You have stirred my heart
    with one, just one of your eyes,
    with one jewel of your necklace.

10 How delightful it is to experience your love,
    my sister, my bride!
How much better is your love than wine,
and the fragrance of your perfume than any spice!
11 Your lips drip like a honeycomb, my bride.
Honey and milk are under your tongue.
The fragrance of your garments
    is like the fragrance of Lebanon.

12 You are an enclosed garden, my sister, my bride.
You are an enclosed spring, [5] a sealed fountain.

13 Your plants are an orchard,
pomegranates with other choice fruits,
henna with nard,
14 nard and saffron, calamus and cinnamon,
with every kind of incense tree,
myrrh and aloes, with all the finest spices.
15 You are a garden fountain,
a well of water flowing and streaming down from Lebanon.

Come Into Your Garden

The Woman

16 Arise, north wind! Come, south wind!
Blow on my garden, so that its spices spread abroad.
Let my lover come into his garden,
and eat its choice fruits.

I Have Come Into My Garden

The Man

Song of Songs 5

I have come into my garden, my sister, my bride.
I have gathered my myrrh with my spice.
I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey.
I have drunk my wine with my milk.

Eat and Drink

The Friends Address the Couple [6]

Eat, friends! Drink!
Be intoxicated with love!

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 3:7 Carriage here does not refer to a wheeled vehicle but to a portable chair or couch carried by porters.
  2. Song of Songs 3:9 A palanquin is a fancy chair or couch on which a dignitary is carried. The Hebrew word is as exotic as palanquin is.
  3. Song of Songs 3:10 Or perhaps the term refers to a type of leather.
  4. Song of Songs 4:4 Or adorned with elegance. The meaning is uncertain.
  5. Song of Songs 4:12 The meaning of the word gal translated spring is uncertain. The parallelism with fountain supports the translation spring.
  6. Song of Songs 5:1 The identity of the speaker and addressees is uncertain. Perhaps the man is speaking to some bystanders.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 23

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 23

Song of Songs 2:8 – 3:5

Through My Bible – November 23

Song of Songs 2:8 – 3:5 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Song of Songs 2

Let Us Go to the Country

The Woman

Listen! It’s my lover!
Look! Here he comes,
leaping on the mountains,
bounding over the hills.
My lover is like a gazelle,
or like a young buck.
Look! There he is, standing behind our wall,
gazing through the windows,
peeking through the lattice.
10 My lover responded and said to me,
“Arise, my darling, my beautiful one,
and come.”

The Man

11 Look! Winter is over.
The rainy season has come to an end.
12 Flowers appear in the land.
The season of singing has arrived.
The cooing of the turtledove is heard in our land.
13 The fruit of the fig tree is beginning to ripen.
The grapevines are in blossom.
They spread their fragrance.
Arise, come, my darling.
My beautiful one, come.

Let Me See You!

The Man

14 My dove is in the clefts of the rock,
in the hiding places on the mountainside.
Let me see how you look.
Let me hear your voice,
because your voice is pleasant,
and you are lovely to look at.

Foxes in Our Vineyard

To the Workers

15 Catch the foxes for us,
the little foxes that ruin the vineyards,
our vineyards that are in blossom.

My Lover Is Mine

The Woman

16 My lover is mine and I am his.
He browses among the lilies.
17 Until the day breathes and the shadows flee,
turn, my lover, and be like a gazelle,
or like a young buck on the divided mountains. [1]

At Night

The Woman

Song of Songs 3

All night long on my bed
I sought the one my soul loves.
I sought him, but I did not find him.
I will get up now and go around the city.
I will go through its markets and squares.
I will seek the one my soul loves.
I sought him, but I did not find him.

The watchmen who patrol the city found me.
“Have you seen the one my soul loves?”
I had hardly passed them,
when I found the one my soul loves.
I held him and would not let him go,
until I had brought him to my mother’s house,
to the room of the one who conceived me.
Daughters of Jerusalem,
you must swear to me by the gazelles,
and by the does of the field,
that you will not arouse or awaken love
until it so desires.

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 2:17 The term divided mountains may refer to a part of the woman’s body. Some translations avoid the issue by transliterating as mountains of Bether.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 22

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 22

Song of Songs 1:1 – 2:7

Through My Bible – November 22

Song of Songs 1:1 – 2:7 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Title

Song of Songs 1

The Song of Songs, which is Solomon’s.

Anticipation—Take Me Away

The Woman

Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth.
Experiencing your love is better than wine.

Your perfumes are fragrant.
Your name is perfume poured out. [1]
That is why the virgins love you!
Carry me away with you—let us run.
Let the king bring me into his chambers.

Best Wishes to the Man

The Friends

We rejoice and are happy because of you.
We celebrate your expressions of love
more than we celebrate wine.
How right the virgins [2] are to love you!

My Own Vineyard

The Woman

Dark am I, but lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem,
dark like the tents of Kedar,
like the tent curtains of Solomon.
Do not stare at me because I am dark
    because the sun gazed at me.
My mother’s sons were angry with me.
They made me take care of the vineyards.
I could not take care of my own vineyard.

Escape to the Country

The Woman

You whom my soul loves, tell me
where you pasture your flock,
where you rest your sheep at noon.

Why should I be like a veiled woman
beside the flocks of your companions?

A Reply to the Woman

If you do not know, most beautiful of women,
go out and follow the tracks of the flock
and graze your young goats
    by the dwellings of the shepherds.

Most Beautiful of Women

The Man

My darling, I compare you
to a mare among the chariots of Pharaoh.
10 Your cheeks are adorned with earrings,
your neck with strings of jewels.
11 We will make for you gold earrings decorated with silver.

The Woman

12 While the king was at his couch,
my nard [3] gave off its fragrance.
13 My lover is to me a sachet of myrrh,
    spending the night between my breasts.
14 My lover is to me a cluster of henna blossoms
from the vineyards of En Gedi.

Our House

The Man

15 How beautiful you are, my darling!
How beautiful! Your eyes are doves.

The Woman

16 How beautiful you are, my lover.
How delightful!
Yes, our bed is fresh.
17 The beams of our house are cedar.
Our rafters are fir.

The Woman

Song of Songs 2

I am a wildflower [4] of Sharon, [5]
a lily of the valleys.

The Man

Like a lily among thorns,
so is my darling among the girls.

He Embraces Me

The Woman

Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest,
so is my lover among the boys.
I desire to sit in his shade.
His fruit is sweet to my taste.

He has brought me to the reception hall, [6]
and his banner over me is love. [7]
Strengthen me with raisin cakes.
Refresh me with apples,
for I am weak from love.

His left arm is under my head,
and his right arm embraces me.

Daughters of Jerusalem,
you must swear to me by the gazelles,
or by the does of the field,
that you will not arouse or awaken love
    until it so desires.

Footnotes

  1. Song of Songs 1:3 The meaning of the Hebrew term oil of Turuq is uncertain. The ancient versions support the meaning oil which is poured out.
  2. Song of Songs 1:4 The noun virgins is supplied from verse 3 to make it clear that the man is being addressed.
  3. Song of Songs 1:12 Nard, myrrh, and henna are expensive fragrances and cosmetics.
  4. Song of Songs 2:1 Traditionally translated rose, but more likely a crocus, daffodil, or lotus.
  5. Song of Songs 2:1 Sharon is a region on the coast of Israel.
  6. Song of Songs 2:4 Literally house of wine, an expression that speaks of drink more than food
  7. Song of Songs 2:4 The meaning of the line is uncertain.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 21

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 21

Ecclesiastes 11:9 – 12:14

Through My Bible – November 21

Ecclesiastes 11:9 – 12:14 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Ecclesiastes 11

Advice to the Young

Young man, be happy while you are a child, and let your heart make you glad during the days of your youth. Walk down the roads on which your heart leads you and on the way your eyes see—but know that for all these, God will bring you into judgment.

10 Put frustration out of your mind, and ignore the troubles of your body, because youth and the dawn of life are vapor. [1]

Ecclesiastes 12

So remember your Creator in the days of your youth,
before the bad days come and the years arrive when you will say,
    “I have no delight in them,”
before the sun and the light of the moon and the stars are darkened,
before the clouds return after the rain,
before the day when the watchmen of the house tremble,
and the strong men are bent over,
and the women who grind grain cease because they are few,
and those watching through the windows can barely see.
Then the double doors to the street are shut,
    as the grinding of the mill grows quiet.
A person wakes up at the sound of a bird,
but all the sounds of music are muffled.
Then they fear heights and terrors along the road.
The almond blossoms become white.
The grasshopper drags himself along,
and the caperberry has no effect. [2]
Why? Because the man is heading to his eternal home.
Then the wailing mourners will go around in the street.
Remember your Creator
    before the silver cord is snapped,
    and the golden bowl is broken,
    before the jar is shattered by the spring,
    and the waterwheel is broken by the well,
    and the dust goes back into the ground—just as it was before,
    and the spirit goes back to God who gave it.

“Nothing but vapor,” said Ecclesiastes, the speaker. [3] “It is all vapor.”

Besides being wise, Ecclesiastes taught the people knowledge, and he weighed, collected, and arranged many proverbs. 10 Ecclesiastes searched to find just the right words. What was written was honest—they were true words. 11 Sayings of wise men are like cattle prods, and those sayings collected by experts are like firmly fixed nails, given by one Shepherd.

12 My son, beware of anything in addition to these. There is no end of making many books, and much study wears out the body.

13 This is the conclusion of the matter. Everything has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments. For mankind, this is everything. [4]

14 Yes, God will bring everything that is done into judgment, including everything that is hidden, whether good or evil.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 11:10 Or because both youth and the coming darkness are vapor
  2. Ecclesiastes 12:5 Or the caperberry shrivels up. The caperberry was associated with sexual vitality.
  3. Ecclesiastes 12:8 Ecclesiastes is not a personal name, but a title for a person who gathers a group of people to speak to them. The Hebrew word qoheleth here has the definite article, showing that it is a title.
  4. Ecclesiastes 12:13 Or this applies to everyone




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 20

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 20

Ecclesiastes 10:8 – 11:8

Through My Bible – November 20

Ecclesiastes 10:8 – 11:8 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Ecclesiastes 10

A person who digs a pit might fall into it, and one who breaks through a wall might be bitten by a snake.

A person who quarries stones may be hurt by them. Someone who splits logs may be endangered by them.

10 If the ax is dull and no one sharpens its edge, the person chopping must apply more strength, but an advantage of wisdom is that it gives success.

11 If the snake bites before it is charmed, there is no advantage to having a charmer. [1]

12 Words from a wise man’s mouth bring favor, but a fool’s lips swallow him up.

13 The fool starts out by saying stupid things, but he ends up speaking wicked madness. 14 The fool multiplies words.

No one knows what will be in the future, and who can tell him what will come after him?

15 The hard work of fools wears them out so much that they no longer know their way to town. [2]

16 How unfortunate you are, O land, when your king once was a servant, [3] and your officials overeat in the morning. 17 How blessed you are, O land, when your king is a son of nobles, and your officials eat at the right time—to get stronger, not to get drunk.

18 Because of laziness, roof beams sag. Because of idle hands, the house leaks.

19 Food is made for pleasure. Wine makes life happy, but money is the answer for everything.

20 Do not curse the king even in your thoughts, and do not curse a rich person in your bedroom, for a bird in the skies might carry your voice, or a bird in flight might reveal the matter.

Ecclesiastes 11

Cast your bread on the surface of the water. Then, after many days you will find it again. [4]

Put part of your investment into seven or even into eight ventures, for you do not know what disaster might come upon the land.

If the clouds are full, they pour out rain on the earth. Whether a tree falls to the south or to the north, wherever it falls, there it will lie.

Whoever keeps watching the wind will never sow, and anyone who keeps looking at the clouds will never reap.

Just as you do not know the path of the wind, [5] or how bones form in the womb of a pregnant woman, so you do not know the work of God, who makes everything.

In the morning sow your seed, and at evening do not let your hand rest, for you do not know which effort will succeed, this one or that, or if both of them will be equally good.

Light is sweet, and it is good for eyes to see the sun.

Yes, even if a man lives many years, in all of them let him find joy, but let him keep in mind the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything that is to come is vapor.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 10:11 The Hebrew expression for snake charmer is master of the tongue, so in Hebrew there is a connection between this proverb and the proverbs that follow, which is not apparent in English.
  2. Ecclesiastes 10:15 Or because they do not even know the way to town
  3. Ecclesiastes 10:16 Or is a boy
  4. Ecclesiastes 11:1 The translation is literal. The three main applications of the principle are to international commerce, charity, and brewing beer. (Soaking bread in water was their method of brewing.) In all three cases, the point of the proverb is the same: You have to invest something to make a profit.
  5. Ecclesiastes 11:5 Or the way of the spirit




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 19

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 19

Ecclesiastes 9:1 – 10:7

Through My Bible – November 19

Ecclesiastes 9:1 – 10:7 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Ecclesiastes 9

Nevertheless, as I pondered all this in my heart, I wanted to make all this clear—that the righteous, the wise, and their works are in God’s hand. Will there be love or hate? No one knows anything that is ahead of him. Everything turns out the same for everyone. One destination waits for the righteous and the wicked, and the good, [1] the ceremonially clean and the unclean, the one who brings sacrifices and the one who does not. As it will be for the good, so it will be for the sinner. As it will be for the one who swears an oath, so it will be for the one who is afraid to take an oath.

This is an evil that infects everything done under the sun. Yes, they all share one fate. What’s more, people’s hearts are full of evil, and madness is in their hearts as long as they live. After that they go to the dead.

Now, whoever is still joined to all the living has hope, because a living dog is better than a dead lion. At least the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing. They have no further reward, because all memory of them is forgotten. Their love, their hate, and their envy have already perished, and they will never again take part in anything done under the sun.

Go ahead, eat your food with joy, and drink your wine with a happy heart, for God is already pleased with what you do. Wear white clothes all the time. Always put lotion on your head.

Enjoy life with the wife you love all the days of your life, that vanishes like vapor, the life which God has given you under the sun, all the days that vanish like vapor, [2] for that is your portion in life and your reward from all the hard work at which you worked so hard under the sun.

10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your strength, for there is no work, planning, knowledge, or wisdom in the grave, where you are heading.

11 I looked again and saw that under the sun the race is not won by the swift, nor the battle by the strong. Food is not given to the wise, nor is wealth given to those who have good judgment, nor is success given to those who have knowledge, because time and chance come upon all of them.

12 Certainly, no man knows his time. Like fish caught in a deadly net and like birds caught in a trap, people are trapped at an evil time which falls on them suddenly.

Wisdom Has Some Value

13 I also saw this example of wisdom under the sun, and it impressed me. [3] 14 There was a small city that had few men in it. A great king came against it, surrounded it, and built great siege works against it. 15 A poor man who was wise was found in it, and he saved the city by his wisdom, but no one remembered that poor man. 16 So I said, “Wisdom is better than might, but the wisdom of the poor man gets despised, and his words are not heeded.”

17 Words of the wise, spoken quietly, should be heeded more than the rant of a ruler among fools.

18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war, but one sinner destroys much good.

Ecclesiastes 10

Dead flies make perfumed oil ferment and stink, just as a little stupidity outweighs wisdom and honor.

A wise man’s heart heads right, but a fool’s heart heads left.

Even when a fool is walking down the road, he does not know where he is going, and he advertises to everyone that he is a fool.

If a ruler’s anger rises against you, do not abandon your post, because keeping calm puts serious sins to rest.

There is an evil I have seen under the sun. What a mistake rulers make! Stupidity is placed in many high places, but the rich are seated in low positions. I have seen slaves on horses, while princes walk on the ground like slaves.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 9:2 The Greek text adds the words and the bad.
  2. Ecclesiastes 9:9 The repetition of days that vanish like vapor is missing from some Hebrew manuscripts and from the ancient versions.
  3. Ecclesiastes 9:13 Literally and it was great to me




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 18

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 18

Ecclesiastes 7 – 8

Through My Bible – November 18

Ecclesiastes 7 – 8 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

What Is Better?

Ecclesiastes 7

A good reputation is better than the best perfume, and the day of one’s death is better than the day of his birth. Better to go to a funeral than to a feast, [1] since death is the final destination for all mankind. The living must take this to heart! Grief is better than laughter, because a sad face does a heart good.

The hearts of the wise think about the funeral, but the hearts of fools think about the feast. It is better to hear a rebuke from a wise man than to listen to a happy song from fools, for the fool’s laughter sounds like thorns crackling under a cooking pot. This too is vapor.

To be sure, oppressing others [2] turns a wise man into a fool, and a bribe corrupts his heart.

It is better to finish something than to begin something. A patient spirit is better than a proud spirit.

Do not be quick to lose your temper, for outrage is embraced by fools.

10 Do not say, “Why were the former days better than these?” Wisdom would not lead you to ask such a question.

11 Wisdom along with an inheritance [3] is good. It is an advantage for those who see the sun, 12 because wisdom gives shade as money gives shade, but the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom keeps its owner alive.

Keep Your Balance

13 Look at the work of God. Indeed, who can straighten what he has bent?

14 On a good day, enjoy the good, but on a bad day, consider carefully. God has made the one as well as the other, so no man can find out about anything that will come later.

15 During my days that vanish like vapor, I have seen it all. For instance, a righteous man perishes despite being righteous, while an evil man lives for a long time in spite of his evil.

16 Do not be overly righteous. Do not trust too much in wisdom. Why ruin yourself? 17 Do not be overly wicked, either, and do not be a fool. Why die before your time? 18 It is good that you hang on to one alternative, but do not let go of the other, for one who fears God will avoid both extremes. [4]

19 Wisdom makes one wise man stronger than ten rulers who are in the city.

20 There is surely not a righteous man on earth who does good and does not sin.

21 Furthermore, do not take to heart all the words people say, so that you do not hear your servant cursing you. 22 Yes, you know in your heart that many times you too have cursed others.

23 All this I tested with wisdom. I said, “I will be wise,” but it was out of reach for me. 24 What has already happened is out of reach, and deeper than deep. Who can find it?

25 I turned my heart to know, to investigate, and to seek wisdom, and to find out how things fit together, [5] and to know that wickedness is foolishness and stupidity is madness.

26 I kept finding out that a woman whose heart is a trap is more bitter than death. Her heart is a hunter’s net. Her hands are chains. The man whom God recognizes as good will escape from her, but the sinner gets trapped by her.

27 “Look,” says Ecclesiastes, “this is what I found by adding one thing to another in my attempts to find how things fit together— 28 this is something my soul keeps seeking but has not found. One man out of a thousand I have found, but a woman among all these I have not found. [6]

29 “Look, I have found only this: I have found that God made mankind [7] upright, but they have gone off looking for many schemes.”

Ecclesiastes 8

Who is such a wise man? And who knows how to explain a situation? A man’s wisdom makes his face shine and softens the hard look on his face.

Obey the king’s command [8] because of your oath before God. [9] Do not quickly leave his presence. Do not stand up for [10] a bad cause, for he will do whatever he pleases. For a king’s word is supreme, and who will say to him, “What are you doing?”

Whoever obeys a command will experience no harm, and a wise heart will know the right time and the right way to act, because for each situation there is a right time and a right way to act, although evil may weigh a man down. But no one knows what will be. Indeed, who can tell him what will be? [11] As no one has power to restrain the wind, there is no power over the day of death. No discharge is granted during war, and wickedness will not deliver those who practice it.

Life Is Not Fair

All this I saw while I was applying my heart to every work done under the sun, during this time when one man has power over another to harm him. [12] 10 While doing this, I have seen wicked people buried. They had come and gone from the holy place, and they were praised [13] in the city where they had done so! This too is vapor.

11 When the sentence for a crime is not carried out quickly, people’s hearts are emboldened to do evil.

12 Though a sinner commits a hundred crimes and lives for a long time, [14] I nevertheless know that it will turn out well for those who fear God, who stand in awe before him. 13 But it will not be good for the wicked. Such a man will not lengthen his days like a shadow, since he does not stand in fear before God.

14 Another example of vapor that appears on the earth is when righteous people get what the wicked deserve for their actions, and wicked people get what the righteous deserve for their actions. I said, “This too is vapor.”

15 So I sang the praises of pleasure, because there is nothing better for a person under the sun than to eat, drink, and enjoy life. Such joy will stay with him during his hard work, throughout the days of his life which God has given him under the sun.

16 When I applied my heart to know wisdom and to observe the tiresome business done on the earth (even though it keeps a person from sleeping day or night), 17 I saw everything that God has done, but no man can grasp all the work that is done under the sun. No matter how hard a man works to explore it, he cannot discover it all. Even if the wise man claims to know it, he cannot find it.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 7:2 The word translated feast refers to drinking more than to eating.
  2. Ecclesiastes 7:7 Or extortion
  3. Ecclesiastes 7:11 Or like an inheritance
  4. Ecclesiastes 7:18 Or observe both principles
  5. Ecclesiastes 7:25 Or the reason for things
  6. Ecclesiastes 7:28 The text does not give any indication of what the point of comparison is. Suggestions include one man who has come to the same conclusions I did or one man just as eager to investigate as I am or one ideal man out of a thousand.
  7. Ecclesiastes 7:29 Or Adam
  8. Ecclesiastes 8:2 The translation follows the ancient versions and some Hebrew manuscripts. The main Hebrew reading is I obey the king’s command or I say, obey the king’s command.
  9. Ecclesiastes 8:2 Or God’s oath to him
  10. Ecclesiastes 8:3 Or persist in
  11. Ecclesiastes 8:7 Or who can tell him when it will happen
  12. Ecclesiastes 8:9 Or one man has power over another to his own detriment
  13. Ecclesiastes 8:10 The translation follows the Greek and some Hebrew manuscripts. Most Hebrew manuscripts read but they were forgotten.
  14. Ecclesiastes 8:12 Or gets away with it




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 17

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 17

Ecclesiastes 4:9 – 6:12

Through My Bible – November 17

Ecclesiastes 4:9 – 6:12 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Ecclesiastes 4

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their hard work. 10 If one of them falls, his companion can lift him up. Pity the person who falls and has no one else to lift him up. 11 What’s more, if two lie down, they can keep warm, but how can one person keep warm alone? 12 Though an attacker can overpower one person, two people together can stand up against him. A rope with three strands is not quickly snapped.

13 Better a poor but wise child than an old but foolish king, who no longer knows enough to pay attention to a warning, 14 for he came out of prison to rule as king, even though he had been born poor in the land that became his kingdom. [1] 15 I saw that all the living, all those people walking under the sun, sided with the king’s successor, the child who took his place. 16 There was no end to all the people who were before them. Yet people who come later will not be pleased with him. This too is vapor and chasing the wind.

Empty Vows, Empty Words

Ecclesiastes 5

Watch your step when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen, rather than to give the kind of sacrifice fools give, for they do not know that they are doing wrong. [2] Do not be hasty with your mouth, and in your heart do not be in a hurry to bring a matter before God, because God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few. As too much busyness leads to dreams, too many words lead to foolish talk.

When you make a vow to God, do not delay in fulfilling it, for he takes no delight in fools. Fulfill whatever you have vowed. Better that you do not vow, than that you do make a vow and do not fulfill it. Do not let your mouth lead you into sin, and do not say to the temple official that the vow was a mistake. Why should God be angry because of what you say and ruin the work your hands have done?

A lot of dreaming produces a lot of vapor. So does a lot of words. [3] Instead, fear God.

Life Is Futile

If you see the poor being oppressed, and you see the province being robbed of justice and fairness, do not be shocked about the situation, because one high official is watched by a higher one, and higher ones are over them! All officials take their cut of the profit from the land; even the king benefits from the fields. [4]

10 Anyone who loves money is never satisfied with money, and anyone who loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is vanishing vapor.

11 When goods increase, so do those who eat them. What profit, then, does the owner get, except to see these things with his eyes?

12 The worker’s sleep is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but a rich person’s abundant possessions allow him no sleep.

13 I have seen a sickening evil under the sun—wealth hoarded by its owner to his own harm, 14 or wealth that is lost in a bad investment. Or a man fathers a son, but he has nothing left in his hand to give him. 15 As he came out from his mother’s womb, so he will go again, naked as he came. From his hard work he can pick up nothing that he can carry away in his hand. 16 This too is a sickening evil: Just as he came, so he will go. So what does he gain, he who works for the wind? 17 Besides this, during all his days he eats in darkness, with great frustration, sickness, and anger.

18 So then, here is what I have seen to be good: It is beautiful to eat, to drink, and to look for good in all a person’s hard work which he has done under the sun, during the few days of his life that God has given him, for that is his reward. 19 Likewise, for everyone to whom God has given wealth and riches, if God has also given him ability to eat from it, to enjoy his reward, [5] and to rejoice in the results of his hard work—this is a gift of God, 20 for the man seldom reflects on the days of his life, since God keeps him busy with the joy in his heart.

Ecclesiastes 6

There is an evil that I have seen under the sun, a common burden that people bear: [6] God gives somebody wealth, riches, and honor, so that he lacks nothing of everything that he craves, but God does not give him the opportunity to eat it. Instead, a stranger eats it. This is vapor, and a sickening evil.

A man may father a hundred children and live many years, but if his soul is not satisfied with good things and he does not even have a proper burial, no matter how many days he lives, I say, “A stillborn baby is better off than he is.” Why? Because that baby comes like a vapor and leaves in darkness, and its name gets covered in darkness. The baby does not see the sun or know it, [7] but it enjoys more peaceful rest than that man does, even if that man would live a thousand years two times without enjoying good things. They all go to the same place, don’t they?

All of a man’s hard work is to feed his mouth, but his appetite [8] never feels satisfied.

So what advantage does a wise man have over a fool? What advantage does a poor man gain, who knows how to keep walking among the living? [9] Better to have eyes that look at what is actually there than desires that roam. This too is vapor and chasing the wind.

10 Whatever exists already has its name, [10] and it is already known what man is. He is not able to win in court against one who is stronger than he is. [11]

11 Yes, the more words, [12] the more vapor. What advantage does a man have?

12 For who knows what is good for a man in life, in the few days of his life, that vanishes like vapor, that passes like a shadow? [13] Who will tell the man what will be after him, under the sun?

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 4:14 Or but the one born to be king becomes poor. The exact sequence of events in verses 13 to 16 is uncertain.
  2. Ecclesiastes 5:1 This verse is verse 4:17 in Hebrew. Throughout the rest of chapter 5, the Hebrew verse numbers are one number lower than the English numbers.
  3. Ecclesiastes 5:7 Or many empty dreams produce many empty words. The meaning of this line is uncertain.
  4. Ecclesiastes 5:9 Or it is beneficial when a land has a king who devotes attention to the field
  5. Ecclesiastes 5:19 Or to accept his lot
  6. Ecclesiastes 6:1 Or a burden which weighs heavily on people
  7. Ecclesiastes 6:5 Or know anything
  8. Ecclesiastes 6:7 Or his soul
  9. Ecclesiastes 6:8 Or how to survive among the living
  10. Ecclesiastes 6:10 Or already has been determined
  11. Ecclesiastes 6:10 Or the One who is stronger than he is
  12. Ecclesiastes 6:11 Or the more things
  13. Ecclesiastes 6:12 Or which God makes like a shadow




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 16

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 16

Ecclesiastes 3:1 – 4:8

Through My Bible – November 16

Ecclesiastes 3:1 – 4:8 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Everything in Its Time

Ecclesiastes 3

1 For everything there is an appointed time.

There is an appropriate time for every activity under heaven:
a time to give birth and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot plants,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones,
a time to embrace and a time not to embrace,
a time to search and a time to stop searching,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to rip and a time to sew,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

What does the worker gain from his hard work? 10 I have seen the task which God has given the children of Adam to keep them busy. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Yes, he has also put eternity in their hearts, yet it is not possible for man to understand the work that God has done from beginning to end.

12 I know that there is nothing better for them than to be happy and enjoy good things [1] while they live. 13 Also, when anyone eats, drinks, and experiences the good things that his hard work leads to—this is God’s gift.

14 I know that everything God does will last forever. Nothing can be added to it or taken away from it. God acts so that people will fear him. 15 Whatever exists now has already been, and whatever will be has already been. God makes whatever has already passed come again. [2]

There Is No Justice

16 I saw something else under the sun: In the place where justice should be, there was wickedness, and in the place for righteousness, there was wickedness. 17 I said in my heart, “God will judge the righteous and the wicked. Yes, there will be a time for every case to be settled before God.” [3]

18 So I said in my heart, “This is done so that God can test the children of Adam, so that they can see what animals they are if left to themselves.” [4] 19 For the outcome [5] for the children of Adam and the outcome for animals is the same. One dies just like the other. All have the same breath. Mankind has no advantage over animals, because everything is vapor. 20 All go to the same place. All were from the dust, and to the dust all return. 21 Who knows whether the spirit [6] of the man goes upward, and the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?

22 So I saw that there is nothing better for man than to be happy in his activities, since that is his reward. [7] For who will show him what there will be after him?

Ecclesiastes 4

I looked again, and I saw all the acts of oppression being done under the sun. Just look at the tears of the oppressed, who have no one to comfort them! Their violent oppressors had the upper hand, and there was no one to comfort them.

So I congratulate the dead, who already have died, more than the living, who are still alive. But better than either of them is the one who has never existed, who has never seen the evil done under the sun.

I also saw that all hard work and all accomplishment are the result of a person’s envy of his neighbor. This too is vapor and chasing the wind.

The fool idly folds his hands and eats his own flesh. Better one handful with relaxation, than two handfuls with hard work and chasing the wind.

I looked again and saw another example of meaningless vapor under the sun: There was a single person all alone, without even a son or a brother, and there was no end to all his hard work. His eyes also were not satisfied with wealth. “So for whom am I working so hard,” he asks, “and depriving myself of enjoyment?” This too is vapor and a miserable task.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 3:12 Or do good
  2. Ecclesiastes 3:15 Or will call the past to account. The meaning of the Hebrew phrase is uncertain.
  3. Ecclesiastes 3:17 Literally a time for every matter, for every action there
  4. Ecclesiastes 3:18 There is considerable difference of opinion about the meaning of this verse.
  5. Ecclesiastes 3:19 Or destination
  6. Ecclesiastes 3:21 Or breath
  7. Ecclesiastes 3:22 Or lot




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 15

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 15

Ecclesiastes 1 – 2

Through My Bible – November 15

Ecclesiastes 1 – 2 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

The Heading

Ecclesiastes 1

The words of Ecclesiastes, [1] David’s son, king in Jerusalem.

The Problem

“Nothing but vapor,” [2] Ecclesiastes said. “Totally vapor. Everything is just vapor that vanishes.”

What does anyone gain by all his hard work, at which he works hard under the sun? A generation goes and a generation comes, but the earth keeps standing forever. The sun rises and the sun sets. It hurries back, panting and out of breath, to its starting point, where it rises again. The wind goes round and round. Blowing south, then blowing north, the wind keeps going around in circles. All streams keep flowing to the sea, but the sea is never full. The streams keep coming back to the same place, and then they flow out again.

Everything is tedious and tiresome, more than one can tell. No eye ever sees enough, and no ear ever gets its fill of hearing.

Whatever has been is what will be again, and whatever has already been done is what will be done again. There is nothing new under the sun. 10 Is there a single thing about which one can say, “Look, this is new”? It was already here ages ago, long before us. 11 No one remembers the people who [3] came before us, and as for those who are coming—after they are gone, no one will remember them either.

Search for a Solution

12 I, Ecclesiastes, have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. 13 I applied my heart to seek out and explore with wisdom everything done under the sky. [4] (What a burdensome task [5] God has given the children of Adam to keep them busy!) 14 I have seen all the actions done under the sun, and, look, it is all nothing but vapor. It is all chasing the wind. 15 Whatever is crooked cannot be straightened. Whatever is not there cannot be counted.

16 I thought in my heart, “Look, I have become great and accumulated more wisdom than anyone ruling over Jerusalem before me. My mind [6] has absorbed so much wisdom and knowledge.” 17 I applied my heart to understand wisdom and knowledge, madness and stupidity. I realized that this too is chasing the wind. 18 In fact, with much wisdom comes much frustration. [7] The more knowledge, the more pain!

Ecclesiastes 2

I thought in my heart, “Go ahead, test yourself with [8] pleasure to see what is good.” [9] But, oh, that too is vapor.

About laughter, I said, “Madness!” About pleasure, “What good is it?”

As my heart kept guiding me with wisdom, I put it to work researching how to relax my body [10] with wine and how to grasp why people do stupid things. [11] My goal was to see what was good for people to do under the sky, during the few days of their lives.

I undertook great projects. I built houses for myself. I planted vineyards for myself. I made gardens and parks for myself, and I planted every kind of fruit tree in them. I made reservoirs of water for myself to irrigate a forest of sprouting trees. I acquired male and female servants. I also had slaves that were born in my own house. Livestock too! I had more herds and flocks than anyone before me in Jerusalem. I piled up silver and gold for myself, as well as treasures from kings and provinces. I acquired male singers and female singers for myself, and what gives great pleasure to men—one concubine after another. [12]

So I became great, and I surpassed all who were in Jerusalem before me. Nevertheless, my wisdom still stayed with me. 10 Whatever my eyes desired I did not withhold from them. I did not hold my heart back from any pleasure. My heart even took pleasure in all my hard work. This was what I got from all my hard work.

11 But when I turned my attention to everything that my hands had done and to how hard I had worked for it—note this—it was all vapor, all chasing the wind. There was no benefit under the sun.

12 I turned my attention to consider wisdom, madness, and stupidity—for what will the man do who will succeed the king? Only what has already been done. 13 I saw wisdom is better than stupidity, as light is better than darkness. 14 The wise man has eyes in his head, but the fool walks in darkness. Yet I also knew that one fate meets [13] them all. 15 So I said in my heart, “The same fate that meets the fool will also meet me. So why then have I been overly wise?” So I said in my heart, “This too is just vapor.”

16 No one will remember the wise man or the fool for long. In days to come, all of them will already be forgotten. How does the wise man die? Just like the fool. 17 So I hated life, because the work done under the sun was so frustrating for me, because everything is vapor and chasing the wind. 18 I also hated all the results of my hard work, for which I worked so hard under the sun, since I must leave it all to the man who comes after me. 19 And who knows—will he be wise, or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the results of my hard work, for which I worked so hard and so wisely, under the sun. This too is vapor that vanishes.

20 So I changed my course, and my heart began to despair over all my hard work at which I worked so hard under the sun. 21 Sure, there may be a man who has worked hard—wisely, aptly, and skillfully. But he must hand over whatever he accumulated by all his hard work to a man who has not worked hard for it. This too is vapor. It’s so unfair! 22 For what does a man gain through all his hard work, through all the turmoil in his heart, as he works so hard under the sun?

23 Pain fills all his days. His occupation is frustration. Even at night his heart does not rest. This too is vapor.

The Best We Can Hope For

24 There is nothing better for a man than to eat and to drink and to find joy in his work. This too, I saw, is from God’s hand. 25 For who can eat or enjoy himself apart from him? [14] 26 Yes, God gives wisdom, knowledge, and happiness to the man whom he considers good, but to the person who goes on sinning God gives the task of gathering and collecting, but only so that he can give it all to a person whom God considers good. This too is vapor, nothing but chasing wind.

Footnotes

  1. Ecclesiastes 1:1 See the introduction on the origin and meaning of the name Ecclesiastes.
  2. Ecclesiastes 1:2 Other possible translations are mist, breath, futility, or emptiness. Since vapor does not last, it serves as an appropriate symbol for everything that is transient, futile, or useless.
  3. Ecclesiastes 1:11 Or the events that
  4. Ecclesiastes 1:13 Or the heavens
  5. Ecclesiastes 1:13 Or rotten business
  6. Ecclesiastes 1:16 Literally heart. In Hebrew thought, the heart is the center not only of emotion but also of the intellect.
  7. Ecclesiastes 1:18 Or grief
  8. Ecclesiastes 2:1 Or experiment with
  9. Ecclesiastes 2:1 Or in order to have a good time
  10. Ecclesiastes 2:3 Or indulge my flesh. Literally draw out my flesh.
  11. Ecclesiastes 2:3 Or try reckless things
  12. Ecclesiastes 2:8 The meaning of this phrase is uncertain. Most translations regard it as a reference to a harem.
  13. Ecclesiastes 2:14 Or destination awaits
  14. Ecclesiastes 2:25 Variant more than me




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 14

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 14

Esther 9 – 10

Through My Bible – November 14

Esther 9 – 10 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Esther 9

On the thirteenth day of the twelfth month (Adar), the day which the king’s proclamation had specified for his decree to be carried out, the day on which the enemies of the Jews hoped to obtain power over them, the situation was reversed so that the Jews would gain power over those who hated them.

The Jews gathered in their cities in all the provinces of King Xerxes, to strike against those seeking to hurt them. No one opposed them because the fear of the Jews had fallen upon all the people. All the officials of the provinces, the satraps, the governors, and the people who did the work of the king were helping the Jews because the fear of Mordecai had fallen on them, because he was important in the king’s house. His reputation was spreading in all the provinces because this man Mordecai was becoming more and more influential.

The Jews struck all their enemies with the sword, slaughtering and destroying them. They did whatever they pleased against their enemies.

In Susa, the citadel, the Jews killed and destroyed five hundred men, including Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai, and Vaizatha. 10 They killed the ten sons of Haman son of Hammedatha, who had been persecuting the Jews, but they did not seize any plunder.

11 On that day the number of those killed in Susa, the citadel, was reported to the king. 12 The king said to Queen Esther, “In Susa, the citadel, the Jews have killed five hundred men, including the ten sons of Haman. What have they done in the rest of the provinces of the king? What is your request? It will be granted. What you are still seeking will be done.”

13 Esther said, “If it seems good to the king, let permission be given to the Jews who are in Susa to carry out today’s order also tomorrow and that the ten sons of Haman be hanged on the gallows.”

14 The king said that this would be done. The command was given in Susa. The ten sons of Haman were hanged.

15 The Jews in Susa gathered again on the fourteenth day of Adar. In Susa they killed three hundred men, but they did not seize any plunder.

16 The rest of the Jews who were in the provinces of the king also gathered and defended themselves, getting relief from their enemies. They killed seventy-five thousand of those who hated them, but they did not seize any plunder. 17 This happened on the thirteenth day of Adar. They rested on the fourteenth and had a day of feasting [1] and joyful celebration.

18 But the Jews who were in Susa gathered on the thirteenth and on the fourteenth. They rested on the fifteenth and made it a day of feasting and joyful celebration. 19 Therefore the Jews of the villages, who live in the unwalled towns of the open countryside, have their day of joyful celebration and feasting on the fourteenth of Adar. It is a holiday, and they send portions of food to their neighbors.

20 Mordecai wrote these things down. Then he sent letters to all the Jews who were in all the provinces of King Xerxes, both near and far, 21 to call upon them to celebrate the fourteenth and fifteenth days of Adar every year, 22 because those were the days on which the Jews gained relief from their enemies. This was the month which was changed from sorrow to gladness for them and from a day of mourning to a holiday. They were to make those days into days of feasting and joyful celebration, sending portions of food to their neighbors and gifts to the poor.

23 So the Jews completed what they had begun to do and what Mordecai had written to them, 24 because Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the one opposed to all the Jews, had plotted against the Jews to destroy them and had cast pur (that is, they had cast lots) to crush them and to destroy them.

25 However, because Esther came into the presence of the king, he said in writing that Haman’s wicked plot, which he had devised against the Jews, was to return on his own head, and they should hang him and his sons on the gallows.

26 That is why they called these days Purim (lots) because of the word pur. Therefore, because of all the words of this letter, because of what they had observed, and because of what had happened to them, 27 the Jews established this festival and made a commitment that they, their descendants, and all those associated with them would never fail to observe these two days according to these directions and at their proper time every year.

28 These days are to be remembered and preserved in every generation, in every family, province, and city. The Jews should never stop celebrating the days of Purim. Their commemoration should never be set aside by their descendants.

29 Then Queen Esther, the daughter of Abihail, and Mordecai the Jew used their authority to publish this second communication about Purim. 30 He sent letters to all the Jews in one hundred twenty-seven provinces of the kingdom of Xerxes containing words of true peace, 31 telling them to observe the days of Purim at their appointed times, just as Mordecai the Jew and Queen Esther had given them the responsibility to do, and telling them to carry out the directions about their fasts and their lamentation just as they and their descendants had agreed to do.

32 The command of Esther established the directions about Purim, and they were written in a book.

Esther 10

King Xerxes imposed taxes on the land and on the islands and coasts of the sea. All his powerful and mighty acts and the account of the greatness of Mordecai, whom the king promoted, are they not written in the chronicles of the kings of Media and Persia?

This was written there because Mordecai the Jew, second in command to King Xerxes, was important for the Jews and popular with large numbers of his brother Israelites, because he sought the welfare of his people and spoke peace to all their descendants.

Footnotes

  1. Esther 9:17 The word translated feasting emphasizes drinking more than eating.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 13

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 13

Esther 7 – 8

Through My Bible – November 13

Esther 7 – 8 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Esther 7

So the king and Haman went to the feast with Queen Esther.

On the second day, when they were again drinking wine, the king said to Esther, “What is your request, Queen Esther? It will be given to you. What are you seeking? Up to half of the kingdom—it’s yours.”

Queen Esther responded, “My King, if I have found favor in your eyes, and if it pleases the king, I am asking that my life be spared, and I am seeking the lives of my people, because I and my people have been sold to be destroyed, to be killed, and to be annihilated. If we were merely being sold to be male and female slaves, I would have remained silent, because that would not have been bad enough to be a reason to bother the king.”

King Xerxes spoke up. He said to Queen Esther, “Who is this, and where is this person who has the audacity to do this?”

Esther said, “This hateful enemy is this evil Haman!” Haman was terrified in the presence of the king and the queen.

The king rose angrily from the place where they were drinking wine [1] and went to the palace garden. But Haman stayed to beg for his life from Queen Esther, because he saw the king had evil plans for him.

Just as the king was returning from the palace garden to the hall where they had been drinking wine, Haman was falling onto the couch on which Esther was lying. The king said, “Will he even assault the queen when I am in the building?” As soon as the words left the king’s mouth, they covered Haman’s face. [2]

In addition, Harbona, one of the eunuchs present with the king, said, “You know, there is a gallows seventy-five feet high standing by the house of Haman, which he made for Mordecai, the person who spoke up for the benefit of the king.” The king said, “Hang [3] him on it.”

10 So they hanged Haman on the gallows which he had prepared for Mordecai, and the king’s anger subsided.

Esther 8

That day King Xerxes gave Queen Esther the house of Haman, the enemy of the Jews. Mordecai came and appeared before the king, because Esther had told him what Mordecai’s relationship to her was.

The king took off his signet ring that he had taken from Haman and gave it to Mordecai. Esther put Mordecai in charge of the house of Haman.

In addition, Esther spoke to the king. She fell at his feet, wept, and requested that he put an end to the evil plan that Haman the Agagite had devised against the Jews.

The king held out the golden scepter to Esther. Esther rose and stood in the presence of the king.

She said, “If it is acceptable to the king, if I have found favor before him, if this idea seems right to the king, and if I am acceptable to him, a decree should be written to nullify the letters for the plot of Haman, son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, which he wrote to destroy the Jews in all of the provinces of the king. For how can I watch the disaster that is about to come on my people! How can I watch the destruction of my relatives!”

King Xerxes said to Queen Esther and to Mordecai the Jew, “Look. I have given Haman’s house to Esther. They have hanged him on the gallows because he raised his hand against the Jews. You can write concerning the Jews whatever seems good to you and seal it with the king’s signet ring, because a document written in the name of the king and sealed with the king’s signet ring cannot be changed.”

The king’s scribes were summoned at once, on the twenty-third day of Sivan, the third month. Whatever Mordecai commanded concerning the Jews was written to the satraps, governors, and the officials of the provinces from India to Cush, one hundred twenty-seven provinces in all. They wrote to each province in its own writing system and to each people in its own language (including to the Jews in their writing system and in their language). 10 He wrote in the name of King Xerxes and sealed it with the king’s signet ring. He sent letters by messengers mounted on the king’s fastest thoroughbreds. [4]

The Content and Effect of the Letters

11 The king gave the Jews in every city the right to gather together to defend their own lives and to destroy, kill, and annihilate any military force of any people or province that might attack them, along with their children and their wives, and to plunder their goods.

12 In all the provinces of King Xerxes, 13 a copy of the writing, which was issued as a law for every province, proclaimed to all the peoples that on one day (the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, Adar), the Jews would be ready to avenge themselves on their enemies.

14 The couriers riding their swift horses went out quickly, spurred on by the word of the king. The decree originated in Susa, the citadel.

15 Mordecai went out from the king’s presence, dressed in blue and white royal clothing, with a large gold crown and a purple linen cape. The city of Susa shouted and rejoiced. 16 It was a time of light, gladness, joy, and honor for the Jews.

17 In every province and in every city which the message of the king reached, his edict brought gladness and joy to the Jews. There was a feast and a holiday. Many of the peoples of the land declared themselves Jews because the fear of the Jews had fallen upon them.

Footnotes

  1. Esther 7:7 The word mishteh, which is often translated banquet, refers primarily to drinking rather than eating. Here that connotation is made explicit by the addition of the word wine.
  2. Esther 7:8 Apparently, to mark him as a condemned man
  3. Esther 7:9 Or impale
  4. Esther 8:10 The precise meaning of this term is uncertain.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 12

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 12

Esther 5 – 6

Through My Bible – November 12

Esther 5 – 6 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Esther 5

On the third day Esther dressed in the queen’s royal clothing and stood in the inner court of the king’s palace, opposite the quarters of the king. The king was sitting on the throne in the reception hall, opposite the entrance.

When the king saw Queen Esther standing in the court, she pleased him. The king held out to Esther the golden scepter, which was in his hand. Esther approached and touched the head of the scepter.

The king said to her, “What concerns you, Queen Esther? Whatever you are seeking (up to half of the kingdom) will be given to you.”

Esther said, “If it is agreeable to the king, the king and Haman should come today to a banquet that I have made for him.”

The king said, “Hurry! Get Haman so that we can do what Esther has said.” So the king and Haman came to the banquet that Esther had prepared.

While the king was drinking wine, he said to Esther, “What is your request? It will be given to you. What are you seeking? Up to half of the kingdom—it’s yours.”

Esther answered, “This is my request. This is what I seek. If I have found favor in the eyes of the king, and if it pleases the king to grant my request, let the king and Haman come to a banquet, which I will make for them tomorrow. Then I will give the answers requested by the king.”

Haman went out that day full of joy, with a happy heart. But when Haman saw Mordecai at the king’s gate, and Mordecai did not stand and tremble before him, Haman was filled with rage against Mordecai. 10 But Haman restrained himself from any action.

He went to his house and called together his friends and his wife Zeresh. 11 Haman reviewed for them the glory of his wealth, the number of his sons, all the details about how the king had made him great, and how the king had elevated him over all the officials and the king’s administrators. 12 Haman said, “What’s more, Queen Esther did not invite anyone except me to come with the king to the banquet that she prepared. I have been invited again for her banquet with the king tomorrow. 13 But none of this means anything to me whenever I see Mordecai the Jew sitting at the king’s gate.”

14 Zeresh his wife and all his friends said to him, “Make a gallows [1] seventy-five feet high. In the morning tell the king that Mordecai should be hanged [2] on it. Then go happily with the king to the banquet.” In Haman’s opinion this was good advice, so he had the gallows made.

Esther 6

That night the king could not sleep, so he ordered that the chronicles, [3] the record of the memorable events of his reign, be brought to him. These accounts were read to the king.

They found the account about the incident when Mordecai had reported Bigthan [4] and Teresh, the king’s two eunuchs who had controlled access to the entrance to the palace, who had tried to assassinate King Xerxes.

The king said, “What honor and recognition has been given to Mordecai for this?”

Then the servants of the king who were attending him said, “Nothing has been done for him.”

The king said, “Who is in the court?” Just then Haman had come to the outer court of the king’s palace to speak to the king about hanging Mordecai on the gallows that he had prepared for him.

The king’s servants said to him, “Look, Haman is standing in the court.” The king said, “Have him come in.”

When Haman came in, the king said to him, “What should be done to honor the man with whom the king is pleased?”

Haman said in his heart, “Who could there be that the king would be more pleased to honor than me?”

Haman said to the king, “The man whom the king is pleased to honor should be clothed with garments that the king has worn. He should be given a horse on which the king has ridden, and crowned with a crown that has been on the king’s head. These clothes and this horse should be delivered by one of the highest ranking noblemen of the king. They should dress up the man whom the king is pleased to honor and let him ride on the horse in the public square of the city. Walking in front of him, they will proclaim, “This is what is done for the man whom the king is pleased to honor.”

10 The king said to Haman, “Hurry! Take the clothing and the horse just as you have said, and do this for Mordecai the Jew, who sits in the gatehouse of the king. Do not leave out a thing from whatever you have said.”

11 Haman took the clothing and the horse, clothed Mordecai, had him ride through the public square of the city, and proclaimed before him, “This is what is done for the man whom the king is pleased to honor.”

12 Mordecai returned to the king’s gate, but Haman hurried to his home, mourning, with his head covered. 13 Haman reported all this to Zeresh his wife and to all his friends.

His advisors and Zeresh his wife said to him, “If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall, is of Jewish descent, [5] you will not overcome him. Instead, you will surely fall before him.”

14 While they were still talking with him, the king’s eunuchs arrived and rushed Haman to the banquet that Esther had prepared.

Footnotes

  1. Esther 5:14 Or sharpened pole
  2. Esther 5:14 Or impaled
  3. Esther 6:1 Or annals
  4. Esther 6:2 Here spelled Bigthana in Hebrew. Such spelling variants are common in the biblical books.
  5. Esther 6:13 Literally of the seed of the Jews




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 11

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 11

Esther 4

Through My Bible – November 11

Esther 4 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

1 When Mordecai became aware of everything that had happened, he ripped his clothes, put on sackcloth and ashes, went out into the middle of the city, and let out a loud, bitter cry. He went right up to the king’s gate, even though no one clothed with sackcloth was allowed to enter it.

In every single province that was reached by the proclamation of the king and where his decree was posted, there was great mourning, fasting, weeping, and lamenting among the Jews. Many lay in sackcloth and ashes.

When Esther’s female attendants and her eunuchs came and told her what had happened, the queen agonized over it. She sent garments to clothe Mordecai so that he could take off his sackcloth, but he did not accept them. Esther summoned Hathak, who had been assigned from among the king’s eunuchs to attend to her. She ordered him to go to Mordecai to learn what was happening and why.

Hathak went out to Mordecai in the public square in front of the king’s gate. Mordecai told him everything that had happened and the exact amount of silver that Haman had said he would put into the treasuries of the king to destroy the Jews. Mordecai also gave Hathak a copy of the written decree which had been issued in Susa to destroy the Jews, so that he could show it to Esther. Hathak was to place the responsibility upon her to go to the king to beg for mercy and plead with him for her people.

So Hathak went and told Esther what Mordecai had said.

10 Esther spoke to Hathak and gave him directions to pass on to Mordecai: 11 “All the king’s servants and the people of the king’s provinces know that it is the law that any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned will be put to death, unless the king holds out the golden scepter to him. Then he will live. But I have not been called to go to the king for thirty days.”

12 They told Mordecai what Esther had said.

13 Mordecai responded, “Take this message to Esther: Do not imagine that of all the Jews, you alone will escape because you are part of the king’s household. 14 If at this time you keep totally silent, relief and deliverance for the Jews will spring up from somewhere, but you and the house of your father will perish. Who knows whether you have become queen for a time like this!”

15 Esther responded to Mordecai, 16 “Go. Gather all the Jews who are found in Susa. Fast on my behalf. Do not eat and drink for three days and nights. I and my young women also will fast in the same way. After that I will go to the king, contrary to the law. And then, if I perish, I perish!”

17 Mordecai went away and did everything Esther had ordered him to do.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 10

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 10

Esther 2:19 – 3:15

Through My Bible – November 10

Esther 2:19 – 3:15 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Esther 2

19 When the virgins were gathered together for a second time, [1] Mordecai was sitting in the gatehouse to the king’s palace. 20 (Esther had not revealed her family or her nationality because when Mordecai had been taking care of her, Mordecai had told her not to do so.)

21 When Mordecai was sitting in the king’s gatehouse, Bigthan and Teresh, two of the king’s eunuchs who controlled access to the entrance to the palace, became very angry and plotted to kill King Xerxes. 22 When Mordecai learned about this, he told Queen Esther. She passed the report along to the king, crediting Mordecai by name. 23 The matter was investigated, and the charges were found to be true, and both of them were hanged. [2] This incident was recorded in the daily record book, in the presence of the king.

Esther 3

After these events King Xerxes honored Haman, son of Hammedatha, the Agagite. He promoted him and placed him over all the officials who served with him. All the servants of the king who were at the king’s gate were bowing down and kneeling in Haman’s presence, because the king had commanded that this be done for him, but Mordecai did not bow down and did not kneel.

So the servants of the king who were at the king’s gate said to Mordecai, “Why are you going against the king’s command?” Even though they spoke to him every day, he did not listen to them. They reported this to Haman, to see whether Mordecai’s actions would be tolerated. Mordecai had informed them that he was a Jew.

When Haman saw that Mordecai was not bowing down and kneeling in his presence, Haman was enraged. Because the king’s servants had made Haman aware of Mordecai’s nationality, Haman was not satisfied with laying hands only on Mordecai. Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Xerxes.

During the twelfth year of King Xerxes’ reign, during the first month, the month of Nisan, a pur (which means “a lot”) was cast before Haman for every day and every month of the year, until Adar, the twelfth month, was chosen.

Haman said to King Xerxes, “There is a group of people scattered and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom. Their laws are different from those of all the other people. They do not keep the laws of the king. It is not good for the king to allow them to get away with this. If the king agrees, a directive should be written to destroy them. I will weigh out ten thousand talents [3] of silver to the treasury of the king for those who carry out this work.”

10 The king took his signet ring from his hand and gave it to Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the man opposing the Jews. 11 The king said to Haman, “The silver will be given to you, [4] as well as the people. Do with them whatever seems good to you.”

12 In the first month, on the thirteenth day, the king’s scribes were summoned. A decree based on everything Haman commanded was written to the king’s satraps, [5] to the governors over each province, and to the officials of every people. The decree was sent to each province in its own writing system and to each people in its own language. It was written in the name of King Xerxes and sealed with the king’s signet ring.

13 The letters were sent by courier to all the provinces of the king to destroy, kill, and annihilate all the Jews, young and old, including children and women, and to plunder their goods in one day, on the thirteenth day of Adar, the twelfth month. 14 A copy of the decree was to be proclaimed as a law to all the peoples in every province, so that they could be ready for that day.

15 The couriers went out, spurred on by the word of the king. The law was issued in Susa, the citadel. The king and Haman sat down to drink. The city of Susa was perplexed and confused.

Footnotes

  1. Esther 2:19 Or had been moved to the second harem
  2. Esther 2:23 Or impaled on a pole
  3. Esther 3:9 A huge amount, estimated to be more than half the annual income of the empire
  4. Esther 3:11 This may mean either Keep your money or It’s your money. I’ll take it if you are offering.
  5. Esther 3:12 Satraps were the rulers of large provinces or groups of smaller provinces within the Persian Empire.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 09

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 09

Esther 2:1-18

Through My Bible – November 09

Esther 2:1-18 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Esther 2

1 When King Xerxes was no longer so angry, he remembered what Vashti had done and what had been decreed about her.

The young men who served as attendants to the king said, “Search for good-looking, young virgins for the king. Let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of the kingdom to do this. Gather all the good-looking, young virgins into the citadel at Susa, to the harem under the supervision of Hegai, the king’s eunuch, the overseer of the women. Give them beauty treatments. The young woman who pleases the king should be queen instead of Vashti.” The king agreed and implemented the plan.

In the citadel at Susa there was a Jew named Mordecai, who was the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish the Benjaminite. Kish had been taken from Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon with the other captives who were exiled with Jeconiah king of Judah. [1]

Mordecai had raised his cousin Hadassah (also called Esther) because she had no father or mother. She was shapely and good-looking. When her father and mother died, Mordecai adopted her as his daughter.

When the king’s order and edict had been proclaimed, and many young women had been gathered into the citadel of Susa under the supervision of Hegai, Esther was taken to the king’s palace, to Hegai, who was in charge of the harem. She pleased Hegai and gained his favor. He quickly provided her with beauty treatments and food. He assigned a good position in the harem to her and to the seven female attendants picked out for her from the king’s palace.

10 Esther had not revealed her nationality or her family background because Mordecai had told her not to do so.

11 Every day Mordecai walked back and forth in front of the harem, to learn about Esther’s well-being and about what was going to be done with her.

12 Every young woman received a turn to go to King Xerxes after she had received the prescribed twelve months of beauty treatments. For six months they used oil of myrrh; for six months perfumes and other beauty treatments for women. 13 Then the young woman went to the king. Everything she desired was given to her when she went from the harem to the king’s palace. 14 She went to the king in the evening. In the morning she returned to the second harem, under the supervision of Sha’ashgaz, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the concubines. She did not return to the king unless he was delighted with her and she was summoned by name.

15 Esther was the daughter of Abihail, Mordecai’s uncle. Mordecai had adopted her.

When her turn came to go to the king, she did not ask for anything except what Hegai, the king’s eunuch in charge of the harem, had advised. Esther won the approval of everyone watching her.

16 Esther was taken to King Xerxes at the royal palace in the tenth month, the month of Tebeth, during the seventh year [2] of his reign.

17 The king loved Esther more than he loved all the other women. She won his favor and approval more than all the other virgins did. He placed the crown of the kingdom on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.

18 The king gave a great banquet in honor of Esther for all his officials and administrators. He declared a tax holiday for the provinces and gave gifts as only the king could give.

Footnotes

  1. Esther 2:6 This occurred in 597 bc. Jeconiah was also called Jehoiachin.
  2. Esther 2:16 About 479 bc




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 08

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 08

Esther 1

Through My Bible – November 08

Esther 1 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

1 These events happened during the time of Xerxes, [1] when Xerxes was ruling over one hundred twenty-seven provinces from India to Cush. [2] King Xerxes was ruling on his royal throne in Susa, the citadel. [3]

In the third year of his reign [4] he gave a banquet [5] for all his officials and administrators, for the leaders of the army of Persia and Media, and for the nobles and officials of the provinces. He displayed the glory and splendor of the riches of his kingdom, the grandeur of his majesty, for many days (one hundred eighty days in all).

When this was completed, the king gave a banquet for all the people who were present at the citadel in Susa, from the most important to the least significant. It lasted for seven days in the courtyard of the garden in the king’s palace.

There were white and blue linen hangings, attached to marble [6] pillars with white and purple cords and silver rings. [7] There were couches made of gold and silver, standing on a mosaic floor made of purple porphyry, marble, mother-of-pearl, and other precious stones. Drinks were served in gold goblets. Each goblet was unique. The royal wine was plentiful, in keeping with the king’s extravagance. No directions were given about the amount each person was to drink because the king had ordered all the waiters to serve the amount each man desired.

Queen Vashti also gave a banquet for the women in the palace of King Xerxes.

10 On the seventh day, when the king was feeling good from the wine, he commanded Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, and Abagtha, Zethar, and Karkas, seven of the eunuchs who served him, 11 to bring before him Queen Vashti wearing the crown of the kingdom, in order to show the people and the officials her beauty. She was very good-looking.

12 Queen Vashti refused to come in response to the king’s command delivered by the eunuchs. The king was infuriated and his anger burned within him.

13 So the king spoke to his advisors who understood the times. (It was the king’s custom to consult with those who were acquainted with law and legal principles.) 14 His close advisors were Karshena, Shethar, Admatha, Tarshish, Meres, Marsena, and Memucan, seven officials of Persia and Media who were allowed to see the king’s face and were ranked first in the kingdom.

15 He asked, “According to the law, what should be done with Queen Vashti since she did not obey the command of the king delivered by the eunuchs?”

16 In the presence of the king and the officials, Memucan said, “Queen Vashti has not only committed an offense against the king, but she has also committed an offense against all the officials and all the people in the provinces of King Xerxes, 17 because the action of the queen, when it is reported to all the women, will cause them to look upon their husbands with contempt. They will say, ‘King Xerxes said to bring Queen Vashti before him, but she did not come.’ 18 Today the noble ladies of Persia and Media, who have heard about the action of the queen, will be talking about it to their husbands, who are the officials of the king. There will be more than enough contempt and anger. 19 If the king agrees, he should issue a royal decree. It should be written among the laws of the Persians and the Medes, so that it cannot be changed. Vashti shall not come into the presence of King Xerxes. The king will give her status as queen to a different person, one better than she is. 20 The decree of the king will be heard throughout all of his vast kingdom. Then all the women will give honor to their husbands, both the most important and the least significant.”

21 The advice seemed good to the king and the officials, so the king did as Memucan had said. 22 He sent letters to all the provinces of the kingdom—to each province in its own writing system and to each people in its own language. The letters stated that each man should be lord in his own house. The letters were addressed to every man in his own language. [8]

Footnotes

  1. Esther 1:1 Also known as Ahasuerus
  2. Esther 1:1 Cush was located in the present-day country of Sudan, south of Egypt.
  3. Esther 1:2 Or fortress. The term designates cities as royal cities of the Persian Empire, but at times it refers only to the palace complex of such a city.
  4. Esther 1:3 That is, 483 bc
  5. Esther 1:3 The word translated banquet refers more to drinking than to eating.
  6. Esther 1:6 Or alabaster
  7. Esther 1:6 Or rods
  8. Esther 1:22 Or the letters stated that he should be lord in his own house, speaking the language of his own people. This sentence is not in the Greek Old Testament.




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 07

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 07

2 Chronicles 36

Through My Bible – November 07

2 Chronicles 36 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Jehoahaz King of Judah

1 The people of the land took Jehoahaz, the son of Josiah, and made him king in Jerusalem in place of his father. Jehoahaz [1] was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned as king in Jerusalem for three months.

The king of Egypt removed him from the kingship in Jerusalem. He also imposed on the land a penalty of one hundred talents of silver and a talent [2] of gold. The king of Egypt made Eliakim, Jehoahaz’s brother, king over Judah and Jerusalem and changed his name to Jehoiakim. Neco took Jehoahaz, Jehoiakim’s brother, and carried him off to Egypt.

Jehoiakim King of Judah

Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he became king. He ruled as king in Jerusalem for eleven years. He did evil in the eyes of the Lord his God.

Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon marched up against him. He bound him in bronze shackles to take him to Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar carried off some of the vessels from the House of the Lord to Babylon and put them in his palace in Babylon.

The rest of the acts of Jehoiakim, the abominations which he committed, and the charges that were established against him, you can find written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah. His son Jehoiachin ruled as king in his place.

Jehoiachin King of Judah

Jehoiachin was eighteen [3] years old when he became king. He reigned as king for three months and ten days in Jerusalem. He did evil in the eyes of the Lord.

10 In the spring of the year, King Nebuchadnezzar sent men and had him brought to Babylon, along with the precious vessels of the House of the Lord. He made his uncle [4] Zedekiah king over Judah and Jerusalem.

Zedekiah King of Judah

11 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned as king in Jerusalem for eleven years.

12 He did evil in the eyes of the Lord his God. He did not humble himself before Jeremiah the prophet, who spoke from the mouth of the Lord. [5] 13 He also rebelled against King Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him swear an oath by God. Zedekiah stiffened his neck and hardened his heart against turning to the Lord, the God of Israel. 14 All the officials of the priests and the people became more and more unfaithful, by following all the abominations of the nations and polluting the House of the Lord, which he had made holy in Jerusalem.

The Fall of Jerusalem

15 The Lord, the God of their fathers, persistently sent warnings to them through his messengers, because he had compassion on his people and on his dwelling place. 16 But the people kept mocking the messengers of God, despising his words, and scoffing at his prophets, until the anger of the Lord rose up against his people, until there was no remedy. 17 He brought against them the king of the Chaldeans, who killed their young men with the sword in the house of their sanctuary. He had no compassion on young man or virgin, old man or aged. The Lord gave them all into his hand.

18 All the articles from the House of God, great and small, and the treasures of the House of the Lord and of the king and his officials—all these he brought to Babylon.

19 They burned the house of God and tore down the wall of Jerusalem. They burned all its fortified buildings with fire. All its precious articles were destroyed.

20 He sent those who escaped from the sword into exile in Babylon. They became servants for him and for his sons until Persia took over the kingdom.

21 To fulfill the word of the Lord that had come by the mouth of Jeremiah, the land completed [6] its sabbath rests. The entire time the land was desolate, it was completing a sabbath rest, which lasted for seventy years.

Cyrus Makes a Proclamation

22 In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord that came by the mouth of Jeremiah, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout his kingdom and put it in writing:

23 This is what Cyrus king of Persia says.

The Lord, the God of Heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. He himself has appointed me to build a house for him in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. From all his people, whoever among you is willing (may the Lord his God be with him) is permitted to go up to Jerusalem.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Chronicles 36:2 Here and in verse 4 in the Hebrew the alternate spelling Joahaz is used.
  2. 2 Chronicles 36:3 A talent is about seventy-five pounds.
  3. 2 Chronicles 36:9 Eighteen is the reading of some Hebrew and Greek manuscripts and 2 Kings 24:8. Eight is the reading of most Hebrew manuscripts in this verse.
  4. 2 Chronicles 36:10 Literally his brother, that is, his relative. See 2 Kings 24:17, which specifies that Zedekiah is his uncle.
  5. 2 Chronicles 36:12 Or who was a prophet by the mouth of the Lord
  6. 2 Chronicles 36:21 Or enjoyed




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 06

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 06

2 Chronicles 34 – 35

Through My Bible – November 06

2 Chronicles 34 – 35 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Josiah King of Judah

2 Chronicles 34

Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he ruled as king in Jerusalem for thirty-one years.

He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord. He walked in the ways of his father David. He did not turn aside to the right or to the left.

Josiah Cleanses the Land

In the eighth year of his reign, when he was still a youth, he began to seek the God of his father David. In the twelfth year he began to purify Judah and Jerusalem from the high places, the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images. In his presence they tore down the altars of the Baals. He chopped down the sun pillars, which stood above them. He broke the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images into pieces and ground them to dust, which he scattered over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them. He burned the bones of their priests on their altars. In this way he purified Judah and Jerusalem. In the cities of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, and as far as Naphtali, as well as in the ruins around them, he tore down the altars, the Asherah poles, and the images. He ground them into powder. He cut to pieces all the sun pillars throughout all the land of Israel. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

Josiah Repairs the Temple

In the eighteenth year of his rule, in order to purify the land and the House, he sent Shaphan son of Azaliah, Ma’aseiah the administrator of the city, and Joah son of Joahaz, the recorder, to repair the House of the Lord his God. They went to Hilkiah the high priest and gave him the silver that had been brought into the house of God, which the Levites, the keepers of the threshold, had collected from Manasseh and Ephraim, from all of the remnant of Israel, and from all of Judah, Benjamin, and the residents of Jerusalem. 10 They gave it to those doing the work, to the ones who were organized to work in the House of the Lord. Those who were doing the work in the House of the Lord used it to repair and restore the building. 11 They gave it to the carpenters and the builders to buy quarried stones and timbers for joists and beams for the buildings which the kings of Judah had allowed to fall into ruin.

12 The men were doing the work faithfully. The supervisors appointed to oversee the work were Jahath and Obadiah, who were Levites descended from Merari, and Zechariah and Meshullam, who were Levites descended from Kohath. These Levites were all skillful with musical instruments. 13 They were in charge of the people transporting material and were overseers for all those doing the different kinds of work. Some of the Levites also served as scribes, officials, and gatekeepers.

Hilkiah Finds the Book of the Law

14 When they brought out the silver that had been brought into the House of the Lord, Hilkiah the priest found the Book of the Law of the Lord that had been received from the hand of Moses. 15 Hilkiah responded by telling Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the House of the Lord.” Hilkiah then gave the scroll to Shaphan.

16 Shaphan brought the scroll to the king. He also brought this report to the king: “Your servants are doing everything they were assigned to do. 17 They have emptied the silver found in the House of the Lord from the chest and have delivered it to the overseers and to the workmen.”

18 Shaphan the secretary then told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a scroll.” Shaphan read it in the presence of the king. 19 When the king heard the words of the law, he tore his clothing.

20 The king gave this command to Hilkiah and to Ahikam son of Shaphan, Abdon son of Micah, Shaphan the secretary, and Asaiah servant of the king: [1] 21 “Go and inquire of the Lord for me and for those who remain in Israel and in Judah concerning the words of the book which has been found. For great is the wrath of the Lord that is being poured out on us because our fathers have not kept the word of the Lord by doing everything that is written in this book.”

22 Hilkiah and the men the king sent with him went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum, the son of Tokhath, the son of Hasrah, [2] the keeper of the vestments. [3] She was living in Jerusalem in the Second District. They spoke to her concerning this matter.

23 She told them:

This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says. Tell the man who sent you to me that 24 this is what the Lord says:

Look! I am bringing disaster on this place and on its inhabitants—all the curses written in the book which they read before the king of Judah— 25 because they have forsaken me and have burned incense to other gods, provoking me to anger with all the work of their hands. My anger will be poured out on this place. It will not be quenched.

26 To the king of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the Lord, you will also say this:

The Lord, the God of Israel, has spoken the words which you have heard. 27 But because your heart was receptive, and you humbled yourself before God when you heard his words against this place and its inhabitants, and because you have humbled yourself before me, have ripped your clothing, and have wept before me, I also have heard you, declares the Lord.

28 Listen to my response! I will gather you to your fathers. You will be gathered to your grave in peace. Your eyes will not see all the disaster I will bring upon this place and its inhabitants.

They brought back this message to the king.

The Book of the Covenant Is Read and Followed

29 The king then summoned all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem. 30 The king went up to the House of the Lord with all the men of Judah, with the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests, the Levites, and all the people from the least to the greatest. In their hearing he read all the words of the Book of the Covenant, which had been found in the House of the Lord.

31 The king stood in his place by the pillar and made a covenant before the Lord to walk in the way of the Lord, to keep his commandments, his testimonies, and his statutes with all his heart and with all his soul, and to uphold the words of the covenant that were written in this book.

32 Then he made all those who were present in Jerusalem and Benjamin stand up and do the same. The inhabitants of Jerusalem acted according to the covenant of God, the God of their fathers.

Josiah Cleanses the Land

33 Josiah removed all the abominations from all the lands that belonged to the people of Israel. He influenced everyone in Israel to serve the Lord their God. Throughout all his days, they did not turn away from the Lord, the God of their fathers.

Josiah Celebrates a Passover

2 Chronicles 35

Josiah celebrated a Passover to the Lord in Jerusalem. They slaughtered the Passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the first month. He appointed the priests to their offices. He encouraged them in the service for the House of the Lord.

He said this to the Levites, who taught all Israel and who were holy to the Lord:

Keep the holy ark in the house built by Solomon, the son of David, the king of Israel. Do not carry it on your shoulders anymore. Now serve the Lord your God and his people Israel. Prepare yourselves according to your divisions, by your fathers’ house, as instructed by David king of Israel and his son Solomon.

Take up your positions in this holy place with a group of Levites assigned to each fathers’ house of your brothers, the people of Israel. Part of a fathers’ house of the Levites is assigned to each group. Slaughter the Passover lamb. Consecrate yourselves. Prepare it for your brother Israelites according to the word of the Lord through Moses.

Josiah contributed a total of thirty thousand lambs and young goats as Passover offerings for all the people who were present, and three thousand cattle. These were contributed from the possessions of the king. His officials contributed toward a voluntary offering on behalf of the people, the priests, and the Levites.

Hilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, the chief officers of the House of God, gave the priests twenty-six hundred lambs for Passover offerings and three hundred cattle.

Konaniah and his brothers Shemaiah and Nethanel, with Hashabiah, Jeiel and Jozabad, the officials of the Levites, contributed five thousand Passover lambs and five hundred cattle to the Levites.

10 When preparations for the service had been completed, the priests stood in their places, and the Levites stood in their divisions as the king had commanded. 11 They slaughtered the Passover lambs. The priests applied the blood they had received, while the Levites skinned the animals. 12 They set aside the burnt offerings to present them on behalf of the groups of fathers’ houses of the people, to offer them to the Lord as is written in the Book of Moses. They did the same with the cattle. 13 They roasted the Passover lamb with fire according to the regulation. They boiled the holy offerings in pots, kettles, and pans. They distributed them quickly to all the people.

14 Afterward, they made preparations for themselves and for the priests, because the priests, the descendants of Aaron, were busy offering the burnt offerings and the fat portions until it was nighttime. So the Levites prepared for themselves and for the priests, the descendants of Aaron.

15 The singers, the descendants of Asaph, were in their places according to the command of David, Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, the king’s seer.

The gatekeepers at each gate did not need to leave their assigned posts because their brother Levites prepared the Passover for them.

16 So all the service for the Lord was prepared on that day to celebrate the Passover and to offer burnt offerings on the altar of the Lord, according to the command of King Josiah.

17 The people of Israel who were present celebrated the Passover at that time and also the Festival of Unleavened Bread for seven days.

18 No Passover like it had been celebrated in Israel since the days of Samuel the prophet. None of the kings of Israel had celebrated such a Passover as Josiah did with the priests and the Levites, and with all Judah and Israel, whoever was present, and with the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

19 This Passover was celebrated in the eighteenth year of the reign of Josiah.

Josiah’s Death

20 After all this, when Josiah had restored the House, Neco king of Egypt went up to fight at Carchemish on the Euphrates, and Josiah went out to confront him.

21 Neco sent messengers to him, saying, “What do we have to do with each other, King of Judah? I am not against you this day, but only against the house [4] against which I am waging war. God has said that I should hurry. Stop opposing God, who is with me, so he will not destroy you.”

22 But Josiah did not turn aside from him. Instead, he disguised himself to fight with him. He did not listen to the words of Neco, which were from the mouth of God, but he went out to battle on the plain near Megiddo.

23 The archers shot King Josiah, so the king said to his attendants, “Take me away, because I am badly wounded.” 24 His attendants took him out of the chariot and carried him to his second chariot and brought him to Jerusalem. He died and was buried in the tombs of his fathers. All Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah.

25 Jeremiah composed a lament for Josiah, and all the male and female singers have sung about Josiah in their laments right up until the present day. They made this into a customary practice in Israel. You can find them recorded among the laments.

26 The rest of the acts of Josiah and his faithful deeds, which were performed according to what is written in the Law of the Lord, 27 and his actions from first to last, you can find these written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Chronicles 34:20 Servant of the king is an official title of a high-ranking advisor.
  2. 2 Chronicles 34:22 Also called Harhas
  3. 2 Chronicles 34:22 The Hebrew means keeper of the garments. It does not specify whether these are priestly or royal garments. The parallel in 2 Kings 10:22 supports the former. It is most likely that the words keeper of the garments modify Shallum, but the office may have been hereditary and held by all three men.
  4. 2 Chronicles 35:21 Or dynasty




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 05

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 05

2 Chronicles 33

Through My Bible – November 05

2 Chronicles 33 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

Manasseh King of Judah

1 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he ruled as king in Jerusalem for fifty-five years.

He did evil in the eyes of the Lord by following the disgusting practices of the nations which the Lord had driven out before the people of Israel. He rebuilt the high places which his father Hezekiah had torn down. He erected altars to the Baals and made Asherah poles. He worshipped the whole army of the heavens [1] and served them. He built altars in the House of the Lord, about which the Lord had said, “In Jerusalem my Name will be forever.” He built altars for the whole army of the heavens in the two courtyards of the House of the Lord.

He made his sons pass through the fire in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom. He practiced fortune telling and sought omens and consulted mediums and spiritists. He greatly increased the evil deeds he did in the eyes of the Lord and provoked him to anger.

He placed the image of the carved idol that he had made in the House of God, about which God had said to David and to his son Solomon, “In this house and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, I will put my Name forever. I will not make the feet of Israel wander again from the land which I assigned to their fathers, but only if they are conscientious to carry out everything I have commanded them, all of the law, the statutes, and the ordinances given through Moses.”

Manasseh seduced Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to do more evil than the nations whom the Lord had destroyed before the people of Israel.

The Lord’s Discipline Leads to Repentance

10 The Lord spoke to Manasseh and to his people, but they paid no attention. 11 So the Lord brought the officials of the army of the king of Assyria against them. They led Manasseh captive with hooks. They bound him with bronze shackles and took him to Babylon.

12 When he was in distress, he sought the favor of the Lord his God and humbled himself deeply before the God of his fathers. 13 He prayed to the Lord, and the Lord responded to his prayer and heard his plea for mercy. He brought him back to Jerusalem into his own kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the Lord is the true God.

14 Afterward he built an outer wall for the City of David in the valley, from west of the Gihon Spring up to the entrance by the Fish Gate. He encircled Ophel with it and raised it to a very great height. He also put commanders of the army in all the fortified cities in Judah.

15 He removed the foreign gods and the idol from the House of the Lord. He removed all the altars he had built on the mountain of the House of the Lord and in Jerusalem and threw them outside of the city. 16 He restored the altar of the Lord and offered sacrifices of fellowship offerings and thank offerings on it. He commanded Judah to serve the Lord, the God of Israel.

17 Nevertheless, the people still sacrificed at the high places, but only to the Lord their God.

Manasseh’s Death

18 You can find the rest of the acts of Manasseh, his prayer to his God, and the words of the seers who spoke to him in the name of the Lord, the God of Israel, in the annals of the kings of Israel.

19 His prayer and how the Lord received it, all his sin and his unfaithfulness, and the sites on which he built the high places and set the Asherah poles and the carved images before he humbled himself, you can find recorded in the chronicles of the seers.

20 Manasseh rested with his fathers, and he was buried in his own house. Amon his son became king in his place.

Amon King of Judah

21 Amon was twenty-two years old when he became king, and he ruled as king in Jerusalem for two years.

22 He did what was evil in the eyes of the Lord, just as his father Manasseh had done. Amon sacrificed to all the images that Manasseh his father had made, and he served them. 23 But he did not humble himself before the Lord, as Manasseh his father had humbled himself. Instead, Amon even multiplied the guilt.

24 His servants conspired against him and put him to death in his own house. 25 Then the people of the land killed all those who had conspired against King Amon. The people of the land made his son Josiah king in his place.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Chronicles 33:3 That is, the stars and other celestial bodies




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.



Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 04

Through My Bible Yr 02 – November 04

2 Chronicles 31:2 – 32:33

Through My Bible – November 04

2 Chronicles 31:2 – 32:33 (EHV)

See series: Through My Bible

2 Chronicles 31

Hezekiah appointed the divisions of the priests and Levites, assigning each man to his area of service according to his division. The priests and Levites were responsible for burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, in order to minister and to give thanks and praise in the gates of the camps [1] of the Lord.

The king’s contribution from his own personal property was designated for the morning and evening burnt offerings, as well as for burnt offerings on the sabbaths, the new moons, and the designated festivals, as it is written in the Law of the Lord. He commanded the people living in Jerusalem to contribute the portion designated for the priests and the Levites, so that they could hold tightly to the Law of the Lord.

As soon as the order was made public, the people of Israel gave their firstfruits of grain, wine, oil, honey, and all the produce of the field in abundance. They brought an abundant tithe of everything.

All the people of Israel and Judah who lived in the cities of Judah also brought their tithe of the cattle and sheep, and a tithe of the holy things dedicated for the Lord their God. They piled up one heap on top of another. In the third month they began to accumulate it, and they finished by the seventh month.

When Hezekiah and the officials came, they saw the piles and blessed the Lord and his people Israel. Hezekiah asked the priests and Levites about the piles. 10 Azariah, the head priest of the house of Zadok, answered, “Ever since they began bringing their contributions into the House of the Lord, the people have had plenty to eat and drink, enough to be full, with plenty left over. The Lord has blessed his people, and this great amount is left over.”

11 Hezekiah told them to prepare rooms in the House of the Lord, and they did so. 12 They faithfully brought the special contributions, tithes, and dedicated things. Konaniah the Levite was the chief officer over them, and his brother Shimei was second in command. 13 Jehiel, Azaziah, Nahath, Asahel, Jerimoth, Jozabad, Eliel, Ismakiah, Mahath, and Benaiah were administrators under the supervision of Konaniah and his brother Shimei, by the appointment of King Hezekiah. Azariah was the chief officer of the House of God. 14 Kore son of Imnah the Levite, the keeper of the East Gate, was in charge of the voluntary offerings to God. He was responsible for distributing the special contribution given to the Lord [2] and the most holy offerings. 15 Faithfully assisting him in the cities of the priests were Eden, Miniamin, Jeshua, Shemaiah, Amariah, and Shekaniah, who were making distributions to their brothers, according to their divisions, the same to old and young alike.

16 Besides that, they gave support to all those enrolled by genealogy, to the males from three years old and up, to all who came to the House of the Lord for their daily service in their assigned offices in their divisions. 17 They also gave support to those enrolled as priests on the basis of the house of their fathers, also to the Levites from twenty years old and older, according to their assigned offices in their divisions, 18 to those enrolled with all their dependents, their wives and their sons and daughters—to the entire group—because they were faithfully keeping themselves holy. 19 For the descendants of Aaron, those priests who were living in the fields of the common pastureland around their cities, in every city, men designated by name were assigned to give portions to every male among the priests and to all the enrolled Levites.

20 Hezekiah carried this out in all Judah. He did what was good, right, and faithful before the Lord his God. 21 In all the work which he began in service to the House of God, to the law, and to the commandment, he sought his God and acted with all his heart, and he prospered.

The King of Assyria Threatens Jerusalem

2 Chronicles 32

After these events and this faithfulness, Sennacherib king of Assyria came into Judah and laid siege to the fortified cities. He intended to capture them for himself.

When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come and was ready to wage war against Jerusalem, he made plans with his officials and soldiers to block the water supply from the springs outside the city. They helped him by gathering a large group of people, who stopped all the springs and the water channel that flowed through the middle of the land. [3] They said, “Why should the kings of Assyria come and find abundant water?”

Hezekiah strengthened his position. He rebuilt the whole part of the wall that had been broken down. He made the towers taller. He made a second wall outside the first wall. He strengthened the Millo [4] of the City of David. He made many weapons and shields. He set military officers over the people. He brought them together with him in the square at the city gate. He spoke to encourage them: “Be strong. Be courageous. Do not be afraid. Do not be terrified because of the presence of the king of Assyria and the horde that is with him, because the one with us is greater than all those who are with him. With him is only an arm of flesh. With us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.” The people were encouraged by the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.

After this, while Sennacherib king of Assyria was attacking Lachish with his powerful forces, he sent his officials to Jerusalem, to Hezekiah king of Judah and to all the people of Judah who were in Jerusalem.

10 Sennacherib’s officials proclaimed:

This is what Sennacherib king of Assyria says. What are you relying on as you sit there under siege in Jerusalem? 11 Isn’t Hezekiah misleading you? He is handing you over to die by famine and by thirst, when he says, “The Lord our God will deliver us from the hand of the king of Assyria.”

12 Hasn’t this same Hezekiah taken away the Lord’s high places and altars and commanded Judah and Jerusalem: “You are to worship in front of one altar, and you are to send up sacrifices only from it”?

13 Don’t you know what I and my fathers have done to all the people of the other lands? Were the gods of those foreign nations ever able to deliver their land from my hand? 14 Who among all the gods of those nations that my fathers devoted to destruction was able to deliver his people from my hand? So, will your God be able to deliver you from my hand?

15 Now don’t let Hezekiah deceive you and mislead you like this. Do not believe him, for no god of any nation or kingdom has been able to deliver his people from my hand or from the hand of my father. How much less will your God! He will not deliver you from my hand.

16 These officials had even more to say against the Lord God and against his servant Hezekiah. 17 The king of Assyria wrote letters to heap scorn on the Lord, the God of Israel, and to speak against him by saying, “Like the gods of those foreign nations, which have not delivered their people from my hands, the god of Hezekiah will not deliver his people from my hand.”

18 They shouted loudly in the language of Judah to the people of Jerusalem who were on the wall, in order to frighten them and terrify them so that they could take the city. 19 They spoke about the God of Jerusalem in the same way that they spoke about the gods of the peoples of the earth, the work of human hands.

The Lord Saves Jerusalem

20 Hezekiah the king and Isaiah son of Amoz, the prophet, prayed about this, crying out to heaven.

21 So the Lord sent an angel, who wiped out all the powerful warriors, the commanders, and the officers in the camp of the king of Assyria, and he returned to his land in disgrace. There he went into the house of his god, and some of his offspring from his own body struck him down with the sword.

22 So the Lord saved Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem from the hand of Sennacherib king of Assyria and from the hand of everyone else. He gave them rest on all sides.

23 Many people kept bringing gifts for the Lord to Jerusalem and precious things to Hezekiah king of Judah. He was exalted in the eyes of all the nations after this.

The Lord Humbles Hezekiah

24 In those days Hezekiah became sick and was dying. He prayed to the Lord, and the Lord answered him and gave him a sign. 25 But Hezekiah did not respond to the benefit granted to him, because his heart was proud. So there was wrath against him and against Judah and Jerusalem.

26 But Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, both he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. So the wrath of the Lord did not come upon them during the days of Hezekiah.

Hezekiah’s Wealth

27 Hezekiah had very great wealth and honor. He made treasuries for his silver, gold, precious stones, spices and incense, shields, and all kinds of expensive items.

28 He made storehouses for the harvest of grain, new wine, and olive oil, as well as stalls for all kinds of cattle and pens for flocks of sheep and goats. 29 He built cities for himself and amassed flocks of sheep and very many cattle, for God had given him very much property and many possessions.

30 This Hezekiah was the one who closed the upper outlet of the Gihon Spring. He directed the water down to the west side of the City of David. Hezekiah was successful in everything he did.

31 When the envoys from the officials of Babylon were sent to him to inquire about the sign that had occurred in the land, God left him to test him and to know everything that was in his heart.

Hezekiah’s Death

32 You can find the rest of the acts of Hezekiah and his faithfulness written in the vision of Isaiah son of Amoz, the prophet, in the Book of the Kings of Judah and Israel.

33 Hezekiah rested with his fathers and was buried in the upper part of [5] the tombs of the sons of David. All Judah and the residents of Jerusalem honored him at his death. Then his son Manasseh became king in his place.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Chronicles 31:2 A nostalgic term, reaching back to the time of the Dwelling
  2. 2 Chronicles 31:14 Or offerings that are lifted up to the Lord
  3. 2 Chronicles 32:4 Literally in the middle of the earth. This may refer to the underground conduit along the east side of the city.
  4. 2 Chronicles 32:5 Millo probably refers to the stone rampart that supported the palace area.
  5. 2 Chronicles 32:33 Or on the ascent to




The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.