Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

Are you going through a severe trial today? If so, your mind must settle certain issues. First, your reaction to the trial should be one of joy, for the testing of your faith develops perseverance (James 1:2-3). Rejoice when trials come your way, because without a test, there can be no testimony.

Second, you should remember that if you persevere and withstand the test, you will receive the crown of life (v. 12). All your earthly difficulties are simply adding jewels to your eternal crown and reward. That is a life-changing way to look at trials, now isn't it?

Finally, you should never blame God for all your trials. He does not tempt you to sin and only gives you what is good. "Whatever is good and perfect comes to us from God above, who created all heaven's lights" (v. 17). Always remember "how kind the Lord is! How good he is! So merciful, this God of ours!" (Psalm 116:5).

The summary of the matter? Trials are working in your character, they are temporary, and God is concerned about your trials. One day you will be on the other side of the trial, saying to yourself as the psalmist said, "Now I can rest again, for the Lord has been so good to me" (Psalm 116:7).

Ezekiel 35:1-36:38

A Prophecy Against Edom

35 The word of the Lord came to me:“Son of man, set your face against Mount Seir;S Ge 14:6 prophesy against itand say: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am against you, Mount Seir, and I will stretch out my handS Jer 6:12 against you and make you a desolate waste.S Isa 34:10; Eze 25:12-14I will turn your towns into ruinsJer 44:2 and you will be desolate. Then you will know that I am the Lord.ver 9; S Jer 49:10

“‘Because you harbored an ancient hostility and delivered the Israelites over to the swordS Ps 63:10 at the time of their calamity,Ob 1:13 the time their punishment reached its climax,Ps 137:7; S Eze 21:29therefore as surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I will give you over to bloodshedS Isa 34:3 and it will pursue you.Isa 63:2-6 Since you did not hate bloodshed, bloodshed will pursue you.I will make Mount Seir a desolate wasteS Jer 46:19 and cut off from it all who come and go.S Jer 49:17I will fill your mountains with the slain; those killed by the sword will fall on your hills and in your valleys and in all your ravines.S Eze 31:12I will make you desolate forever;Ob 1:10 your towns will not be inhabited. Then you will know that I am the Lord.S Isa 34:5-6; S Jer 49:13

10 “‘Because you have said, “These two nations and countries will be ours and we will take possessionS Ps 83:12; Eze 36:2, 5 of them,” even though I the Lord was there,11 therefore as surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I will treat you in accordance with the angerEze 25:14 and jealousy you showed in your hatred of them and I will make myself known among them when I judge you.S Ps 9:16; Ob 1:15; S Mt 7:212 Then you will know that I the Lord have heard all the contemptible things you have said against the mountains of Israel. You said, “They have been laid waste and have been given over to us to devour.S Jer 50:713 You boastedS Jer 49:16 against me and spoke against me without restraint, and I heard it.Da 11:3614 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: While the whole earth rejoices, I will make you desolate.Jer 51:4815 Because you rejoicedEze 36:5; Ob 1:12 when the inheritance of Israel became desolate, that is how I will treat you. You will be desolate, Mount Seir,ver 3 you and all of Edom.S Isa 34:5-6, 11; Jer 50:11-13; S La 4:21; S Eze 32:29 Then they will know that I am the Lord.’”

Hope for the Mountains of Israel

36 “Son of man, prophesy to the mountains of IsraelS Eze 17:22 and say, ‘Mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord.This is what the Sovereign Lord says:Eze 6:2-3 The enemy said of you, “Aha!S Eze 25:3 The ancient heightsS Dt 32:13 have become our possession.S Eze 35:10”’Therefore prophesy and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because they ravagedOb 1:13 and crushed you from every side so that you became the possession of the rest of the nations and the object of people’s malicious talk and slander,Ps 44:13-14; S La 2:16; 3:62therefore, mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Sovereign Lord: This is what the Sovereign Lord says to the mountains and hills, to the ravines and valleys,Eze 6:3 to the desolate ruinsEze 33:24 and the desertedS Lev 26:43 towns that have been plundered and ridiculedS Jer 2:26 by the rest of the nations around youDt 11:11; S Ps 79:4; S Eze 33:28-29this is what the Sovereign Lord says: In my burningS Dt 29:20 zeal I have spoken against the rest of the nations, and against all Edom, for with glee and with malice in their hearts they made my land their own possession so that they might plunder its pastureland.’Isa 66:16; Jer 25:31; 50:11; Eze 25:12-14; S 35:10, 15; 38:22; Joel 3:2, 14Therefore prophesy concerning the land of Israel and say to the mountains and hills, to the ravines and valleys: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I speak in my jealous wrath because you have suffered the scorn of the nations.Ps 123:3-4; Eze 34:29Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I swear with uplifted handS Nu 14:30 that the nations around you will also suffer scorn.S Jer 25:9

“‘But you, mountains of Israel, will produce branches and fruitS Isa 4:2; S 27:6; Eze 47:12 for my people Israel, for they will soon come home.I am concerned for you and will look on you with favor; you will be plowed and sown,ver 34-36; Jer 31:2710 and I will cause many people to live on you—yes, all of Israel. The towns will be inhabited and the ruinsS Isa 49:8 rebuilt.Isa 49:17-23; S Jer 30:1811 I will increase the number of people and animals living on you, and they will be fruitfulS Ge 1:22 and become numerous. I will settle peopleS Isa 49:19 on you as in the pastMic 7:14 and will make you prosper more than before.Lev 26:9; Job 42:13; S Jer 31:28; S Eze 16:55; Zec 10:8 Then you will know that I am the Lord.12 I will cause people, my people Israel, to live on you. They will possess you, and you will be their inheritance;Eze 47:14, 22 you will never again deprive them of their children.

13 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because some say to you, “You devour peopleS Nu 13:32 and deprive your nation of its children,”14 therefore you will no longer devour people or make your nation childless, declares the Sovereign Lord.15 No longer will I make you hear the taunts of the nations, and no longer will you suffer the scorn of the peoples or cause your nation to fall, declares the Sovereign Lord.Ps 89:50-51; Isa 54:4; S Eze 34:29’”

Israel’s Restoration Assured

16 Again the word of the Lord came to me:17 “Son of man, when the people of Israel were living in their own land, they defiled it by their conduct and their actions. Their conduct was like a woman’s monthly uncleannessS Lev 5:2; S 12:2 in my sight.Ps 106:37-38; S Jer 2:718 So I poured outS 2Ch 34:21 my wrath on them because they had shed blood in the land and because they had defiled it with their idols.19 I dispersed them among the nations, and they were scatteredDt 28:64 through the countries; I judged them according to their conduct and their actions.Lev 18:24-28; S Eze 7:8; S 24:14; 39:2420 And wherever they went among the nations they profanedS Lev 18:21; S Eze 13:19; Ro 2:24 my holy name, for it was said of them, ‘These are the Lord’s people, and yet they had to leave his land.’Isa 52:5; S Jer 33:24; S Eze 12:1621 I had concern for my holy name, which the people of Israel profaned among the nations where they had gone.Ps 74:18; Isa 48:9

22 “Therefore say to the Israelites, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: It is not for your sake, people of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name,S Isa 37:35; S Eze 20:44 which you have profanedRo 2:24* among the nations where you have gone.Dt 9:5-6; Ps 106:8; S Eze 20:923 I will show the holiness of my great name,S Nu 6:27 which has been profanedS Isa 37:23 among the nations, the name you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know that I am the Lord,S Ps 46:10 declares the Sovereign Lord, when I am proved holyS Eze 20:41 through you before their eyes.Ps 126:2; S Isa 5:16; Eze 20:14; 38:23; 39:7, 27-28

24 “‘For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land.S Isa 43:5-6; S Eze 34:13; 37:2125 I will sprinkleS Lev 14:7; S 16:14-15; Heb 9:13 clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanseS Ps 51:2, 7 you from all your impuritiesS Ezr 6:21 and from all your idols.Isa 2:18; Joel 3:21; Zec 3:4; 13:2; S Ac 22:1626 I will give you a new heartJer 24:7 and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stoneS Jer 5:3 and give you a heart of flesh.S Ps 51:10; S Eze 18:31; S 2Co 3:327 And I will put my SpiritS Isa 44:3; Joel 2:29; Jn 3:5 in you and move you to follow my decreesS Eze 18:21 and be careful to keep my laws.Jer 50:20; 1Th 4:828 Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people,Jer 30:22; 31:33 and I will be your God.S Eze 11:17; S 14:11; 34:24; 37:14, 27; Zec 8:829 I will save you from all your uncleanness. I will call for the grain and make it plentiful and will not bring famineEze 34:29 upon you.30 I will increase the fruit of the trees and the crops of the field, so that you will no longer suffer disgrace among the nations because of famine.Lev 26:4-5; S Eze 34:13-14; Hos 2:21-2231 Then you will remember your evil ways and wicked deeds, and you will loathe yourselves for your sins and detestable practices.Isa 6:5; S Jer 31:19; S Eze 6:932 I want you to know that I am not doing this for your sake, declares the Sovereign Lord. Be ashamedEze 16:63 and disgraced for your conduct, people of Israel!Dt 9:5

33 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: On the day I cleanseS Lev 16:30 you from all your sins, I will resettle your towns, and the ruinsS Lev 26:31 will be rebuilt.S Isa 49:834 The desolate land will be cultivated instead of lying desolate in the sight of all who pass through it.35 They will say, “This land that was laid waste has become like the garden of Eden;S Ge 2:8 the cities that were lying in ruins, desolate and destroyed, are now fortified and inhabited.Am 9:1436 Then the nations around you that remain will know that I the Lord have rebuilt what was destroyed and have replanted what was desolate. I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it.’S Jer 42:10; S Eze 17:22; 37:14; 39:27-28

37 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Once again I will yield to Israel’s pleaZec 10:6; 13:9 and do this for them: I will make their people as numerous as sheep,Ps 102:17; Jer 29:12-1438 as numerous as the flocks for offerings1Ki 8:63; 2Ch 35:7-9 at Jerusalem during her appointed festivals. So will the ruined cities be filled with flocks of people. Then they will know that I am the Lord.S Ex 6:2

A Message for Edom

35 Again a message came to me from the Lord:“Son of man, turn and face Mount Seir, and prophesy against its people.Give them this message from the Sovereign Lord:

“I am your enemy, O Mount Seir,

and I will raise my fist against you

to destroy you completely.

I will demolish your cities

and make you desolate.

Then you will know that I am the Lord.

“Your eternal hatred for the people of Israel led you to butcher them when they were helpless, when I had already punished them for all their sins.As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, since you show no distaste for blood, I will give you a bloodbath of your own. Your turn has come!I will make Mount Seir utterly desolate, killing off all who try to escape and any who return.I will fill your mountains with the dead. Your hills, your valleys, and your ravines will be filled with people slaughtered by the sword.I will make you desolate forever. Your cities will never be rebuilt. Then you will know that I am the Lord.

10 “For you said, ‘The lands of Israel and Judah will be ours. We will take possession of them. What do we care that the Lord is there!’11 Therefore, as surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I will pay back your angry deeds with my own. I will punish you for all your acts of anger, envy, and hatred. And I will make myself known to IsraelHebrew to them; Greek version reads to you. by what I do to you.12 Then you will know that I, the Lord, have heard every contemptuous word you spoke against the mountains of Israel. For you said, ‘They are desolate; they have been given to us as food to eat!’13 In saying that, you boasted proudly against me, and I have heard it all!

14 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: The whole world will rejoice when I make you desolate.15 You rejoiced at the desolation of Israel’s territory. Now I will rejoice at yours! You will be wiped out, you people of Mount Seir and all who live in Edom! Then you will know that I am the Lord.

Restoration for Israel

36 “Son of man, prophesy to Israel’s mountains. Give them this message: O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord!This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Your enemies have taunted you, saying, ‘Aha! Now the ancient heights belong to us!’Therefore, son of man, give the mountains of Israel this message from the Sovereign Lord: Your enemies have attacked you from all directions, making you the property of many nations and the object of much mocking and slander.Therefore, O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Sovereign Lord. He speaks to the hills and mountains, ravines and valleys, and to ruined wastes and long-deserted cities that have been destroyed and mocked by the surrounding nations.This is what the Sovereign Lord says: My jealous anger burns against these nations, especially Edom, because they have shown utter contempt for me by gleefully taking my land for themselves as plunder.

“Therefore, prophesy to the hills and mountains, the ravines and valleys of Israel. This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am furious that you have suffered shame before the surrounding nations.Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I have taken a solemn oath that those nations will soon have their own shame to endure.

“But the mountains of Israel will produce heavy crops of fruit for my people—for they will be coming home again soon!See, I care about you, and I will pay attention to you. Your ground will be plowed and your crops planted.10 I will greatly increase the population of Israel, and the ruined cities will be rebuilt and filled with people.11 I will increase not only the people, but also your animals. O mountains of Israel, I will bring people to live on you once again. I will make you even more prosperous than you were before. Then you will know that I am the Lord.12 I will cause my people to walk on you once again, and you will be their territory. You will never again rob them of their children.

13 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: The other nations taunt you, saying, ‘Israel is a land that devours its own people and robs them of their children!’14 But you will never again devour your people or rob them of their children, says the Sovereign Lord.15 I will not let you hear those other nations insult you, and you will no longer be mocked by them. You will not be a land that causes its nation to fall, says the Sovereign Lord.”

16 Then this further message came to me from the Lord:17 “Son of man, when the people of Israel were living in their own land, they defiled it by the evil way they lived. To me their conduct was as unclean as a woman’s menstrual cloth.18 They polluted the land with murder and the worship of idols,The Hebrew term (literally round things) probably alludes to dung; also in 36:25. so I poured out my fury on them.19 I scattered them to many lands to punish them for the evil way they had lived.20 But when they were scattered among the nations, they brought shame on my holy name. For the nations said, ‘These are the people of the Lord, but he couldn’t keep them safe in his own land!’21 Then I was concerned for my holy name, on which my people brought shame among the nations.

22 “Therefore, give the people of Israel this message from the Sovereign Lord: I am bringing you back, but not because you deserve it. I am doing it to protect my holy name, on which you brought shame while you were scattered among the nations.23 I will show how holy my great name is—the name on which you brought shame among the nations. And when I reveal my holiness through you before their very eyes, says the Sovereign Lord, then the nations will know that I am the Lord.24 For I will gather you up from all the nations and bring you home again to your land.

25 “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean. Your filth will be washed away, and you will no longer worship idols.26 And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.Hebrew a heart of flesh.27 And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations.

28 “And you will live in Israel, the land I gave your ancestors long ago. You will be my people, and I will be your God.29 I will cleanse you of your filthy behavior. I will give you good crops of grain, and I will send no more famines on the land.30 I will give you great harvests from your fruit trees and fields, and never again will the surrounding nations be able to scoff at your land for its famines.31 Then you will remember your past sins and despise yourselves for all the detestable things you did.32 But remember, says the Sovereign Lord, I am not doing this because you deserve it. O my people of Israel, you should be utterly ashamed of all you have done!

33 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: When I cleanse you from your sins, I will repopulate your cities, and the ruins will be rebuilt.34 The fields that used to lie empty and desolate in plain view of everyone will again be farmed.35 And when I bring you back, people will say, ‘This former wasteland is now like the Garden of Eden! The abandoned and ruined cities now have strong walls and are filled with people!’36 Then the surrounding nations that survive will know that I, the Lord, have rebuilt the ruins and replanted the wasteland. For I, the Lord, have spoken, and I will do what I say.

37 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am ready to hear Israel’s prayers and to increase their numbers like a flock.38 They will be as numerous as the sacred flocks that fill Jerusalem’s streets at the time of her festivals. The ruined cities will be crowded with people once more, and everyone will know that I am the Lord.”

35 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

Son of man, set thy face against mount Seir, and prophesy against it,

And say unto it, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, O mount Seir, I am against thee, and I will stretch out mine hand against thee, and I will make thee most desolate.

I will lay thy cities waste, and thou shalt be desolate, and thou shalt know that I am the Lord.

Because thou hast had a perpetual hatred, and hast shed the blood of the children of Israel by the force of the sword in the time of their calamity, in the time that their iniquity had an end:

Therefore, as I live, saith the Lord God, I will prepare thee unto blood, and blood shall pursue thee: sith thou hast not hated blood, even blood shall pursue thee.

Thus will I make mount Seir most desolate, and cut off from it him that passeth out and him that returneth.

And I will fill his mountains with his slain men: in thy hills, and in thy valleys, and in all thy rivers, shall they fall that are slain with the sword.

I will make thee perpetual desolations, and thy cities shall not return: and ye shall know that I am the Lord.

10 Because thou hast said, These two nations and these two countries shall be mine, and we will possess it; whereas the Lord was there:

11 Therefore, as I live, saith the Lord God, I will even do according to thine anger, and according to thine envy which thou hast used out of thy hatred against them; and I will make myself known among them, when I have judged thee.

12 And thou shalt know that I am the Lord, and that I have heard all thy blasphemies which thou hast spoken against the mountains of Israel, saying, They are laid desolate, they are given us to consume.

13 Thus with your mouth ye have boasted against me, and have multiplied your words against me: I have heard them.

14 Thus saith the Lord God; When the whole earth rejoiceth, I will make thee desolate.

15 As thou didst rejoice at the inheritance of the house of Israel, because it was desolate, so will I do unto thee: thou shalt be desolate, O mount Seir, and all Idumea, even all of it: and they shall know that I am the Lord.

36 Also, thou son of man, prophesy unto the mountains of Israel, and say, Ye mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord:

Thus saith the Lord God; Because the enemy hath said against you, Aha, even the ancient high places are ours in possession:

Therefore prophesy and say, Thus saith the Lord God; Because they have made you desolate, and swallowed you up on every side, that ye might be a possession unto the residue of the heathen, and ye are taken up in the lips of talkers, and are an infamy of the people:

Therefore, ye mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord God; Thus saith the Lord God to the mountains, and to the hills, to the rivers, and to the valleys, to the desolate wastes, and to the cities that are forsaken, which became a prey and derision to the residue of the heathen that are round about;

Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Surely in the fire of my jealousy have I spoken against the residue of the heathen, and against all Idumea, which have appointed my land into their possession with the joy of all their heart, with despiteful minds, to cast it out for a prey.

Prophesy therefore concerning the land of Israel, and say unto the mountains, and to the hills, to the rivers, and to the valleys, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I have spoken in my jealousy and in my fury, because ye have borne the shame of the heathen:

Therefore thus saith the Lord God; I have lifted up mine hand, Surely the heathen that are about you, they shall bear their shame.

But ye, O mountains of Israel, ye shall shoot forth your branches, and yield your fruit to my people of Israel; for they are at hand to come.

For, behold, I am for you, and I will turn unto you, and ye shall be tilled and sown:

10 And I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, even all of it: and the cities shall be inhabited, and the wastes shall be builded:

11 And I will multiply upon you man and beast; and they shall increase and bring fruit: and I will settle you after your old estates, and will do better unto you than at your beginnings: and ye shall know that I am the Lord.

12 Yea, I will cause men to walk upon you, even my people Israel; and they shall possess thee, and thou shalt be their inheritance, and thou shalt no more henceforth bereave them of men.

13 Thus saith the Lord God; Because they say unto you, Thou land devourest up men, and hast bereaved thy nations:

14 Therefore thou shalt devour men no more, neither bereave thy nations any more, saith the Lord God.

15 Neither will I cause men to hear in thee the shame of the heathen any more, neither shalt thou bear the reproach of the people any more, neither shalt thou cause thy nations to fall any more, saith the Lord God.

16 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

17 Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own way and by their doings: their way was before me as the uncleanness of a removed woman.

18 Wherefore I poured my fury upon them for the blood that they had shed upon the land, and for their idols wherewith they had polluted it:

19 And I scattered them among the heathen, and they were dispersed through the countries: according to their way and according to their doings I judged them.

20 And when they entered unto the heathen, whither they went, they profaned my holy name, when they said to them, These are the people of the Lord, and are gone forth out of his land.

21 But I had pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the heathen, whither they went.

22 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, thus saith the Lord God; I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.

23 And I will sanctify my great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the Lord, saith the Lord God, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes.

24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.

25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.

26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.

29 I will also save you from all your uncleannesses: and I will call for the corn, and will increase it, and lay no famine upon you.

30 And I will multiply the fruit of the tree, and the increase of the field, that ye shall receive no more reproach of famine among the heathen.

31 Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.

32 Not for your sakes do I this, saith the Lord God, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel.

33 Thus saith the Lord God; In the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your iniquities I will also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be builded.

34 And the desolate land shall be tilled, whereas it lay desolate in the sight of all that passed by.

35 And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited.

36 Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the Lord build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the Lord have spoken it, and I will do it.

37 Thus saith the Lord God; I will yet for this be enquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock.

38 As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men: and they shall know that I am the Lord.

James 1:1-18

James,S Ac 15:13 a servant of GodRo 1:1; Tit 1:1 and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribesAc 26:7 scatteredDt 32:26; Jn 7:35; 1Pe 1:1 among the nations:

Greetings.Ac 15:23

Trials and Temptations

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verses 16 and 19; and in 2:1, 5, 14; 3:10, 12; 4:11; 5:7, 9, 10, 12, 19. whenever you face trials of many kinds,ver 12; S Mt 5:12; Heb 10:34; 12:11because you know that the testing of your faith1Pe 1:7 produces perseverance.S Heb 10:36Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be matureS 1Co 2:6 and complete, not lacking anything.If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God,1Ki 3:9, 10; Pr 2:3-6 who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.Ps 51:6; Da 1:17; 2:21; S Mt 7:7But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt,S Mt 21:21; Mk 11:24 because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.Such a person is double-mindedPs 119:113; Jas 4:8 and unstable2Pe 2:14; 3:16 in all they do.

Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position.S Mt 23:1210 But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower.Job 14:2; Ps 103:15, 16; Isa 40:6, 7; 1Co 7:31; 1Pe 1:2411 For the sun rises with scorching heatMt 20:12 and withersPs 102:4, 11 the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed.Isa 40:6-8 In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.

12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trialver 2; Ge 22:1; Jas 5:11; 1Pe 3:14 because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of lifeS 1Co 9:25 that the Lord has promised to those who love him.Ex 20:6; 1Co 2:9; 8:3; Jas 2:5

13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their ownPr 19:3 evil desire and enticed.15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin;Ge 3:6; Job 15:35; Ps 7:14; Isa 59:4 and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.S Ro 6:23

16 Don’t be deceived,S 1Co 6:9 my dear brothers and sisters.ver 19; Jas 2:517 Every good and perfect gift is from above,Ps 85:12; Jn 3:27; Jas 3:15, 17 coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,Ge 1:16; Ps 136:7; Da 2:22; 1Jn 1:5 who does not changeNu 23:19; Ps 102:27; Mal 3:6 like shifting shadows.18 He chose to give us birthS Jn 1:13 through the word of truth,S 2Ti 2:15 that we might be a kind of firstfruitsJer 2:3; Rev 14:4 of all he created.

Greetings from James

This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I am writing to the “twelve tribes”—Jewish believers scattered abroad.

Greetings!

Faith and Endurance

Dear brothers and sisters,Greek brothers; also in 1:16, 19. when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

Believers who areGreek The brother who is. poor have something to boast about, for God has honored them.10 And those who are rich should boast that God has humbled them. They will fade away like a little flower in the field.11 The hot sun rises and the grass withers; the little flower droops and falls, and its beauty fades away. In the same way, the rich will fade away with all of their achievements.

12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.13 And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong,Or God should not be put to a test by evil people. and he never tempts anyone else.14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.

16 So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters.17 Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens.Greek from above, from the Father of lights. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.Some manuscripts read He never changes, as a shifting shadow does.18 He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession.Greek we became a kind of firstfruit of his creatures.

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;

Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.

A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:

10 But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.

11 For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.

12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

16 Do not err, my beloved brethren.

17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Psalm 116:1-19

Psalm 116

I love the Lord,Ps 18:1 for he heard my voice;

he heard my cryS Ps 31:22; S 40:1 for mercy.S Ps 6:9; S 28:2

Because he turned his earS Ps 5:1 to me,

I will call on him as long as I live.

The cords of deathS 2Sa 22:6; Ps 18:4-5 entangled me,

the anguish of the grave came over me;

I was overcome by distress and sorrow.

Then I called on the namePs 80:18; 118:5 of the Lord:

Lord, save me!S Ps 80:2

The Lord is gracious and righteous;S Ex 9:27; S 2Ch 12:6; S Ezr 9:15

our God is full of compassion.S Ex 22:27; S Ps 86:15

The Lord protects the unwary;

when I was brought low,S Ps 79:8 he saved me.Ps 18:3; 22:5; 107:13

Return to your rest,Ps 46:10; 62:1; 131:2; Mt 11:29 my soul,

for the Lord has been goodPs 13:6; 106:1; 142:7 to you.

For you, Lord, have delivered meS Ps 86:13 from death,

my eyes from tears,

my feet from stumbling,

that I may walk before the LordS Ge 5:22; Ps 56:13; 89:15

in the land of the living.S Job 28:13; Ps 27:13; Isa 38:11; Jer 11:19

10 I trusted2Co 4:13* in the Lord when I said,

“I am greatly afflicted”;Ps 9:18; 72:2; S 107:17; 119:67, 71, 75

11 in my alarm I said,

“Everyone is a liar.”Jer 9:3-5; Hos 7:13; Mic 6:12; Ro 3:4

12 What shall I return to the Lord

for all his goodnessPs 103:2; 106:1 to me?

13 I will lift up the cup of salvation

and call on the nameS Ps 105:1 of the Lord.

14 I will fulfill my vowsS Nu 30:2; S Ps 66:13 to the Lord

in the presence of all his people.

15 Precious in the sightPs 72:14 of the Lord

is the death of his faithful servants.S Nu 23:10

16 Truly I am your servant, Lord;Ps 119:125; 143:12

I serve you just as my mother did;S Ps 86:16

you have freed me from my chains.S Job 12:18

17 I will sacrifice a thank offeringS Lev 7:12; S Ezr 1:4 to you

and call on the name of the Lord.

18 I will fulfill my vowsver 14; S Lev 22:18 to the Lord

in the presence of all his people,

19 in the courtsPs 92:13; 96:8; 100:4; 135:2 of the house of the Lord

in your midst, Jerusalem.Ps 102:21

Praise the Lord.Hebrew Hallelu Yah

Psalm 116

I love the Lord because he hears my voice

and my prayer for mercy.

Because he bends down to listen,

I will pray as long as I have breath!

Death wrapped its ropes around me;

the terrors of the graveHebrew of Sheol. overtook me.

I saw only trouble and sorrow.

Then I called on the name of the Lord:

“Please, Lord, save me!”

How kind the Lord is! How good he is!

So merciful, this God of ours!

The Lord protects those of childlike faith;

I was facing death, and he saved me.

Let my soul be at rest again,

for the Lord has been good to me.

He has saved me from death,

my eyes from tears,

my feet from stumbling.

And so I walk in the Lord’s presence

as I live here on earth!

10 I believed in you, so I said,

“I am deeply troubled, Lord.”

11 In my anxiety I cried out to you,

“These people are all liars!”

12 What can I offer the Lord

for all he has done for me?

13 I will lift up the cup of salvation

and praise the Lord’s name for saving me.

14 I will keep my promises to the Lord

in the presence of all his people.

15 The Lord cares deeply

when his loved ones die.

16 O Lord, I am your servant;

yes, I am your servant, born into your household;

you have freed me from my chains.

17 I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving

and call on the name of the Lord.

18 I will fulfill my vows to the Lord

in the presence of all his people—

19 in the house of the Lord

in the heart of Jerusalem.

Praise the Lord!

116 I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications.

Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.

The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow.

Then called I upon the name of the Lord; O Lord, I beseech thee, deliver my soul.

Gracious is the Lord, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful.

The Lord preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me.

Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee.

For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling.

I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.

10 I believed, therefore have I spoken: I was greatly afflicted:

11 I said in my haste, All men are liars.

12 What shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits toward me?

13 I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord.

14 I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all his people.

15 Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.

16 O Lord, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds.

17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord.

18 I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all his people.

19 In the courts of the Lord's house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise ye the Lord.

Proverbs 27:23-27

23 Be sure you know the condition of your flocks,Pr 12:10

give careful attention to your herds;

24 for riches do not endure forever,Pr 23:5

and a crown is not secure for all generations.

25 When the hay is removed and new growth appears

and the grass from the hills is gathered in,

26 the lambs will provide you with clothing,

and the goats with the price of a field.

27 You will have plenty of goats’ milk to feed your family

and to nourish your female servants.

23 Know the state of your flocks,

and put your heart into caring for your herds,

24 for riches don’t last forever,

and the crown might not be passed to the next generation.

25 After the hay is harvested and the new crop appears

and the mountain grasses are gathered in,

26 your sheep will provide wool for clothing,

and your goats will provide the price of a field.

27 And you will have enough goats’ milk for yourself,

your family, and your servant girls.

23 Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, and look well to thy herds.

24 For riches are not for ever: and doth the crown endure to every generation?

25 The hay appeareth, and the tender grass sheweth itself, and herbs of the mountains are gathered.

26 The lambs are for thy clothing, and the goats are the price of the field.

27 And thou shalt have goats' milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and for the maintenance for thy maidens.

Nov 16 Nov 18
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