Soulfood Daily Bible Readings

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Micah 1–4:11

1:1 The word of the LORD that came to Micah of Moresheth in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.

  Hear, you peoples, all of you;
    pay attention, O earth, and all that is in it,
  and let the Lord GOD be a witness against you,
    the Lord from his holy temple.
  For behold, the LORD is coming out of his place,
    and will come down and tread upon the high places of the earth.
  And the mountains will melt under him,
    and the valleys will split open,
  like wax before the fire,
    like waters poured down a steep place.
  All this is for the transgression of Jacob
    and for the sins of the house of Israel.
  What is the transgression of Jacob?
    Is it not Samaria?
  And what is the high place of Judah?
    Is it not Jerusalem?
  Therefore I will make Samaria a heap in the open country,
    a place for planting vineyards,
  and I will pour down her stones into the valley
    and uncover her foundations.
  All her carved images shall be beaten to pieces,
    all her wages shall be burned with fire,
    and all her idols I will lay waste,
  for from the fee of a prostitute she gathered them,
    and to the fee of a prostitute they shall return.
  For this I will lament and wail;
    I will go stripped and naked;
  I will make lamentation like the jackals,
    and mourning like the ostriches.
  For her wound is incurable,
    and it has come to Judah;
  it has reached to the gate of my people,
    to Jerusalem.
10   Tell it not in Gath;
    weep not at all;
  in Beth-le-aphrah
    roll yourselves in the dust.
11   Pass on your way,
    inhabitants of Shaphir,
    in nakedness and shame;
  the inhabitants of Zaanan
    do not come out;
  the lamentation of Beth-ezel
    shall take away from you its standing place.
12   For the inhabitants of Maroth
    wait anxiously for good,
  because disaster has come down from the LORD
    to the gate of Jerusalem.
13   Harness the steeds to the chariots,
    inhabitants of Lachish;
  it was the beginning of sin
    to the daughter of Zion,
  for in you were found
    the transgressions of Israel.
14   Therefore you shall give parting gifts
    to Moresheth-gath;
  the houses of Achzib shall be a deceitful thing
    to the kings of Israel.
15   I will again bring a conqueror to you,
    inhabitants of Mareshah;
  the glory of Israel
    shall come to Adullam.
16   Make yourselves bald and cut off your hair,
    for the children of your delight;
  make yourselves as bald as the eagle,
    for they shall go from you into exile.

2:1   Woe to those who devise wickedness
    and work evil on their beds!
  When the morning dawns, they perform it,
    because it is in the power of their hand.
  They covet fields and seize them,
    and houses, and take them away;
  they oppress a man and his house,
    a man and his inheritance.
  Therefore thus says the LORD:
  behold, against this family I am devising disaster,
    from which you cannot remove your necks,
  and you shall not walk haughtily,
    for it will be a time of disaster.
  In that day they shall take up a taunt song against you
    and moan bitterly,
  and say, “We are utterly ruined;
    he changes the portion of my people;
  how he removes it from me!
    To an apostate he allots our fields.”
  Therefore you will have none to cast the line by lot
    in the assembly of the LORD.
  “Do not preach”—thus they preach—
    “one should not preach of such things;
    disgrace will not overtake us.”
  Should this be said, O house of Jacob?
    Has the LORD grown impatient?
    Are these his deeds?
  Do not my words do good
    to him who walks uprightly?
  But lately my people have risen up as an enemy;
  you strip the rich robe from those who pass by trustingly
    with no thought of war.
  The women of my people you drive out
    from their delightful houses;
  from their young children you take away
    my splendor forever.
10   Arise and go,
    for this is no place to rest,
  because of uncleanness that destroys
    with a grievous destruction.
11   If a man should go about and utter wind and lies,
    saying, “I will preach to you of wine and strong drink,”
    he would be the preacher for this people!
12   I will surely assemble all of you, O Jacob;
    I will gather the remnant of Israel;
  I will set them together
    like sheep in a fold,
  like a flock in its pasture,
    a noisy multitude of men.
13   He who opens the breach goes up before them;
    they break through and pass the gate,
    going out by it.
  Their king passes on before them,
    the LORD at their head.

3:1   And I said:
  Hear, you heads of Jacob
    and rulers of the house of Israel!
  Is it not for you to know justice?—
    you who hate the good and love the evil,
  who tear the skin from off my people
    and their flesh from off their bones,
  who eat the flesh of my people,
    and flay their skin from off them,
  and break their bones in pieces
    and chop them up like meat in a pot,
    like flesh in a cauldron.
  Then they will cry to the LORD,
    but he will not answer them;
  he will hide his face from them at that time,
    because they have made their deeds evil.
  Thus says the LORD concerning the prophets
    who lead my people astray,
  who cry “Peace”
    when they have something to eat,
  but declare war against him
    who puts nothing into their mouths.
  Therefore it shall be night to you, without vision,
    and darkness to you, without divination.
  The sun shall go down on the prophets,
    and the day shall be black over them;
  the seers shall be disgraced,
    and the diviners put to shame;
  they shall all cover their lips,
    for there is no answer from God.
  But as for me, I am filled with power,
    with the Spirit of the LORD,
    and with justice and might,
  to declare to Jacob his transgression
    and to Israel his sin.
  Hear this, you heads of the house of Jacob
    and rulers of the house of Israel,
  who detest justice
    and make crooked all that is straight,
10   who build Zion with blood
    and Jerusalem with iniquity.
11   Its heads give judgment for a bribe;
    its priests teach for a price;
    its prophets practice divination for money;
  yet they lean on the LORD and say,
    “Is not the LORD in the midst of us?
    No disaster shall come upon us.”
12   Therefore because of you
    Zion shall be plowed as a field;
  Jerusalem shall become a heap of ruins,
    and the mountain of the house a wooded height.

4:1   It shall come to pass in the latter days
    that the mountain of the house of the LORD
  shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
    and it shall be lifted up above the hills;
  and peoples shall flow to it,
    and many nations shall come, and say:
  “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    to the house of the God of Jacob,
  that he may teach us his ways
    and that we may walk in his paths.”
  For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
  He shall judge between many peoples,
    and shall decide disputes for strong nations far away;
  and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and their spears into pruning hooks;
  nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
    neither shall they learn war anymore;
  but they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree,
    and no one shall make them afraid,
    for the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken.
  For all the peoples walk
    each in the name of its god,
  but we will walk in the name of the LORD our God
    forever and ever.

  In that day, declares the LORD,
    I will assemble the lame
  and gather those who have been driven away
    and those whom I have afflicted;
  and the lame I will make the remnant,
    and those who were cast off, a strong nation;
  and the LORD will reign over them in Mount Zion
    from this time forth and forevermore.
  And you, O tower of the flock,
    hill of the daughter of Zion,
  to you shall it come,
    the former dominion shall come,
    kingship for the daughter of Jerusalem.
  Now why do you cry aloud?
    Is there no king in you?
  Has your counselor perished,
    that pain seized you like a woman in labor?
10   Writhe and groan, O daughter of Zion,
    like a woman in labor,
  for now you shall go out from the city
    and dwell in the open country;
    you shall go to Babylon.
  There you shall be rescued;
    there the LORD will redeem you
    from the hand of your enemies.
11   Now many nations
    are assembled against you,
  saying, “Let her be defiled,
    and let our eyes gaze upon Zion.”

John 19:1–16

19:1 Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. They came up to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and struck him with their hands. Pilate went out again and said to them, “See, I am bringing him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in him.” So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold the man!” When the chief priests and the officers saw him, they cried out, “Crucify him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves and crucify him, for I find no guilt in him.” The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to that law he ought to die because he has made himself the Son of God.” When Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid. He entered his headquarters again and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. 10 So Pilate said to him, “You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have authority to release you and authority to crucify you?” 11 Jesus answered him, “You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above. Therefore he who delivered me over to you has the greater sin.”

12 From then on Pilate sought to release him, but the Jews cried out, “If you release this man, you are not Caesar’s friend. Everyone who makes himself a king opposes Caesar.” 13 So when Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called The Stone Pavement, and in Aramaic Gabbatha. 14 Now it was the day of Preparation of the Passover. It was about the sixth hour. He said to the Jews, “Behold your King!” 15 They cried out, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.” 16 So he delivered him over to them to be crucified.

So they took Jesus,

Psalm 12

To the choirmaster: according to The Sheminith. A Psalm of David.

12:1   Save, O LORD, for the godly one is gone;
    for the faithful have vanished from among the children of man.
  Everyone utters lies to his neighbor;
    with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.
  May the LORD cut off all flattering lips,
    the tongue that makes great boasts,
  those who say, “With our tongue we will prevail,
    our lips are with us; who is master over us?”
  “Because the poor are plundered, because the needy groan,
    I will now arise,” says the LORD;
    “I will place him in the safety for which he longs.”
  The words of the LORD are pure words,
    like silver refined in a furnace on the ground,
    purified seven times.
  You, O LORD, will keep them;
    you will guard us from this generation forever.
  On every side the wicked prowl,
    as vileness is exalted among the children of man.

Proverbs 31:1–5

31:1 The words of King Lemuel. An oracle that his mother taught him:

  What are you doing, my son? What are you doing, son of my womb?
    What are you doing, son of my vows?
  Do not give your strength to women,
    your ways to those who destroy kings.
  It is not for kings, O Lemuel,
    it is not for kings to drink wine,
    or for rulers to take strong drink,
  lest they drink and forget what has been decreed
    and pervert the rights of all the afflicted.


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