Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

Daniel and his friends were men of integrity. Captured by the armies of Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, Daniel and three others from Judah's royal family were ordered to live in the king's palace for a three-year training period. Early on they resolved not to defile themselves with the royal food and wine offered by the king's servants (Daniel 1:8). Everything about these young men testified of the good, wholesome will of God in their lives. Then came the time for their testing.

Satan did everything he could to destroy them and their influence with the king. It seemed as though their doom was sealed until Daniel spoke to the captain of the guard with "wisdom and discretion" (2:14). His wise words won him and his friends a stay of execution. Later that night the Lord revealed the king's disturbing dream to Daniel. As a result, instead of being harmed, Daniel and his friends were promoted!

When you come under persecution, be certain you are pursuing God's good will with all your heart. He will give you the favor you need with whoever is responsible. "The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil" (1 Peter 3:12).

Daniel 1:1-2:23

Daniel’s Training in Babylon

In the third year of the reign of JehoiakimS Jer 46:2 king of Judah, NebuchadnezzarS 2Ki 24:1; S Jer 28:14 king of BabylonJer 50:1 came to Jerusalem and besieged it.2Ki 24:1; S 2Ch 36:6; Jer 35:11And the Lord delivered Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, along with some of the articles from the temple of God. These he carriedS 2Ki 24:13 off to the temple of his god in BabyloniaHebrew Shinar and put in the treasure house of his god.S 2Ch 36:7; Jer 27:19-20; Zec 5:5-11

Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, chief of his court officials, to bring into the king’s service some of the Israelites from the royal family and the nobilityS 2Ki 20:18; S 24:15; Isa 39:7young men without any physical defect, handsome,S Ge 39:6 showing aptitude for every kind of learning,ver 17 well informed, quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king’s palace. He was to teach them the languageS Ezr 4:7 and literature of the Babylonians.Or ChaldeansThe king assigned them a daily amount of food and winever 8, 10 from the king’s table.S Est 2:9 They were to be trained for three years,ver 18 and after that they were to enter the king’s service.ver 19; S Est 2:5-6

Among those who were chosen were some from Judah: Daniel,S Eze 14:14 Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah.Da 2:17, 25The chief official gave them new names: to Daniel, the name Belteshazzar;Da 2:26; 4:8; 5:12; 10:1 to Hananiah, Shadrach; to Mishael, Meshach; and to Azariah, Abednego.S Isa 39:7; Da 2:49; 3:12

But Daniel resolved not to defileS Eze 4:13-14 himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way.Now God had caused the official to show favorS Ge 39:21; S Pr 16:7 and compassionS 1Ki 8:50 to Daniel,10 but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned yourThe Hebrew for your and you in this verse is plural. food and drink.ver 5 Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.”

11 Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah,12 “Please testRev 2:10 your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink.13 Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.”ver 1614 So he agreed to this and testedRev 2:10 them for ten days.

15 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food.Ex 23:2516 So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead.ver 12-13

17 To these four young men God gave knowledge and understandingS Job 12:13 of all kinds of literature and learning.Da 2:23; Col 1:9; Jas 1:5 And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds.Da 2:19, 30; 5:11; 7:1; 8:1

18 At the end of the timever 5 set by the king to bring them into his service, the chief official presented them to Nebuchadnezzar.19 The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s service.S Ge 41:4620 In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magiciansS Ge 41:8 and enchanters in his whole kingdom.S 1Ki 4:30; Est 2:15; S Eze 28:3; Da 2:13, 28; 4:18; 6:3

21 And Daniel remained there until the first year of King Cyrus.S 2Ch 36:22; Da 6:28; 10:1

Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream

In the second year of his reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams;ver 3; S Ge 20:3; S Job 33:15, 18; Da 4:5 his mind was troubledGe 41:8 and he could not sleep.S Est 6:1So the king summoned the magicians,S Ge 41:8 enchanters, sorcerersEx 7:11; Jer 27:9 and astrologersOr Chaldeans; also in verses 4, 5 and 10S ver 10; S Isa 19:3; S 44:25 to tell him what he had dreamed.Da 4:6 When they came in and stood before the king,he said to them, “I have had a dream that troublesDa 4:5 me and I want to know what it means.Or was

Then the astrologers answered the king,At this point the Hebrew text has in Aramaic, indicating that the text from here through the end of chapter 7 is in Aramaic.S Ezr 4:7 “May the king live forever!S Ne 2:3 Tell your servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”

The king replied to the astrologers, “This is what I have firmly decided:Ge 41:32 If you do not tell me what my dream was and interpret it, I will have you cut into piecesver 12 and your houses turned into piles of rubble.Ezr 6:11; Da 3:29But if you tell me the dream and explain it, you will receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor.ver 48; Da 5:7, 16 So tell me the dream and interpret it for me.”

Once more they replied, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”

Then the king answered, “I am certain that you are trying to gain time, because you realize that this is what I have firmly decided:If you do not tell me the dream, there is only one penaltyEst 4:11 for you. You have conspired to tell me misleading and wicked things, hoping the situation will change. So then, tell me the dream, and I will know that you can interpret it for me.”Isa 41:22-24

10 The astrologersver 2; Da 3:8; 4:7 answered the king, “There is no one on earth who can do what the king asks! No king, however great and mighty, has ever asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or astrologer.ver 27; Da 5:811 What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods,S Ge 41:38 and they do not live among humans.”

12 This made the king so angry and furiousDa 3:13, 19 that he ordered the executionver 5 of all the wise men of Babylon.13 So the decree was issued to put the wise men to death, and men were sent to look for Daniel and his friends to put them to death.S Da 1:20; 5:19

14 When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact.15 He asked the king’s officer, “Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?” Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel.16 At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him.

17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah.S Da 1:618 He urged them to plead for mercyS Isa 37:4 from the God of heavenEzr 1:2; Ne 1:4; Jnh 1:9; Rev 11:13 concerning this mystery,ver 23; Jer 33:3 so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.19 During the night the mysteryver 28 was revealed to Daniel in a vision.S Job 33:15; S Da 1:17 Then Daniel praised the God of heavenS Jos 22:3320 and said:

“Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever;S Ps 113:2; 145:1-2

wisdom and powerS Job 9:4; S Jer 32:19 are his.

21 He changes times and seasons;Da 7:25

he deposesS Job 12:19; Ps 75:6-7; Ro 13:1 kings and raises up others.Da 4:17

He gives wisdomS Ps 119:34; Jas 1:5 to the wise

and knowledge to the discerning.S 2Sa 14:17

22 He reveals deep and hidden things;S Ge 40:8; S Job 12:22; Da 5:11; 1Co 2:10

he knows what lies in darkness,Job 12:22; Ps 139:11-12; Jer 23:24; S Heb 4:13

and lightIsa 45:7; Jas 1:17 dwells with him.

23 I thank and praise you, God of my ancestors:S Ge 31:5; S Ex 3:15

You have given me wisdomS Da 1:17 and power,

you have made known to me what we asked of you,

you have made known to us the dream of the king.S Eze 28:3

Daniel in Nebuchadnezzar’s Court

During the third year of King Jehoiakim’s reign in Judah,This event occurred in 605 B.c., during the third year of Jehoiakim’s reign (according to the calendar system in which the new year begins in the spring). King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it.The Lord gave him victory over King Jehoiakim of Judah and permitted him to take some of the sacred objects from the Temple of God. So Nebuchadnezzar took them back to the land of BabyloniaHebrew the land of Shinar. and placed them in the treasure-house of his god.

Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, his chief of staff, to bring to the palace some of the young men of Judah’s royal family and other noble families, who had been brought to Babylon as captives.“Select only strong, healthy, and good-looking young men,” he said. “Make sure they are well versed in every branch of learning, are gifted with knowledge and good judgment, and are suited to serve in the royal palace. Train these young men in the language and literature of Babylon.Or of the Chaldeans.The king assigned them a daily ration of food and wine from his own kitchens. They were to be trained for three years, and then they would enter the royal service.

Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah were four of the young men chosen, all from the tribe of Judah.The chief of staff renamed them with these Babylonian names:

Daniel was called Belteshazzar.

Hananiah was called Shadrach.

Mishael was called Meshach.

Azariah was called Abednego.

But Daniel was determined not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king. He asked the chief of staff for permission not to eat these unacceptable foods.Now God had given the chief of staff both respect and affection for Daniel.10 But he responded, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has ordered that you eat this food and wine. If you become pale and thin compared to the other youths your age, I am afraid the king will have me beheaded.”

11 Daniel spoke with the attendant who had been appointed by the chief of staff to look after Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.12 “Please test us for ten days on a diet of vegetables and water,” Daniel said.13 “At the end of the ten days, see how we look compared to the other young men who are eating the king’s food. Then make your decision in light of what you see.”14 The attendant agreed to Daniel’s suggestion and tested them for ten days.

15 At the end of the ten days, Daniel and his three friends looked healthier and better nourished than the young men who had been eating the food assigned by the king.16 So after that, the attendant fed them only vegetables instead of the food and wine provided for the others.

17 God gave these four young men an unusual aptitude for understanding every aspect of literature and wisdom. And God gave Daniel the special ability to interpret the meanings of visions and dreams.

18 When the training period ordered by the king was completed, the chief of staff brought all the young men to King Nebuchadnezzar.19 The king talked with them, and no one impressed him as much as Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. So they entered the royal service.20 Whenever the king consulted them in any matter requiring wisdom and balanced judgment, he found them ten times more capable than any of the magicians and enchanters in his entire kingdom.

21 Daniel remained in the royal service until the first year of the reign of King Cyrus.Cyrus began his reign (over Babylon) in 539 B.c.

Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream

One night during the second year of his reign,The second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign was 603 B.c. Nebuchadnezzar had such disturbing dreams that he couldn’t sleep.He called in his magicians, enchanters, sorcerers, and astrologers,Or Chaldeans; also in 2:4, 5, 10. and he demanded that they tell him what he had dreamed. As they stood before the king,he said, “I have had a dream that deeply troubles me, and I must know what it means.”

Then the astrologers answered the king in Aramaic,The original text from this point through chapter 7 is in Aramaic. “Long live the king! Tell us the dream, and we will tell you what it means.”

But the king said to the astrologers, “I am serious about this. If you don’t tell me what my dream was and what it means, you will be torn limb from limb, and your houses will be turned into heaps of rubble!But if you tell me what I dreamed and what the dream means, I will give you many wonderful gifts and honors. Just tell me the dream and what it means!”

They said again, “Please, Your Majesty. Tell us the dream, and we will tell you what it means.”

The king replied, “I know what you are doing! You’re stalling for time because you know I am serious when I say,‘If you don’t tell me the dream, you are doomed.’ So you have conspired to tell me lies, hoping I will change my mind. But tell me the dream, and then I’ll know that you can tell me what it means.”

10 The astrologers replied to the king, “No one on earth can tell the king his dream! And no king, however great and powerful, has ever asked such a thing of any magician, enchanter, or astrologer!11 The king’s demand is impossible. No one except the gods can tell you your dream, and they do not live here among people.”

12 The king was furious when he heard this, and he ordered that all the wise men of Babylon be executed.13 And because of the king’s decree, men were sent to find and kill Daniel and his friends.

14 When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, came to kill them, Daniel handled the situation with wisdom and discretion.15 He asked Arioch, “Why has the king issued such a harsh decree?” So Arioch told him all that had happened.16 Daniel went at once to see the king and requested more time to tell the king what the dream meant.

17 Then Daniel went home and told his friends Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah what had happened.18 He urged them to ask the God of heaven to show them his mercy by telling them the secret, so they would not be executed along with the other wise men of Babylon.19 That night the secret was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven.20 He said,

“Praise the name of God forever and ever,

for he has all wisdom and power.

21 He controls the course of world events;

he removes kings and sets up other kings.

He gives wisdom to the wise

and knowledge to the scholars.

22 He reveals deep and mysterious things

and knows what lies hidden in darkness,

though he is surrounded by light.

23 I thank and praise you, God of my ancestors,

for you have given me wisdom and strength.

You have told me what we asked of you

and revealed to us what the king demanded.”

In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it.

And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god.

And the king spake unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring certain of the children of Israel, and of the king's seed, and of the princes;

Children in whom was no blemish, but well favoured, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as had ability in them to stand in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans.

And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king's meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand before the king.

Now among these were of the children of Judah, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah:

Unto whom the prince of the eunuchs gave names: for he gave unto Daniel the name of Belteshazzar; and to Hananiah, of Shadrach; and to Mishael, of Meshach; and to Azariah, of Abednego.

But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Now God had brought Daniel into favour and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs.

10 And the prince of the eunuchs said unto Daniel, I fear my lord the king, who hath appointed your meat and your drink: for why should he see your faces worse liking than the children which are of your sort? then shall ye make me endanger my head to the king.

11 Then said Daniel to Melzar, whom the prince of the eunuchs had set over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah,

12 Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

13 Then let our countenances be looked upon before thee, and the countenance of the children that eat of the portion of the king's meat: and as thou seest, deal with thy servants.

14 So he consented to them in this matter, and proved them ten days.

15 And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king's meat.

16 Thus Melzar took away the portion of their meat, and the wine that they should drink; and gave them pulse.

17 As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

18 Now at the end of the days that the king had said he should bring them in, then the prince of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar.

19 And the king communed with them; and among them all was found none like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah: therefore stood they before the king.

20 And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king enquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm.

21 And Daniel continued even unto the first year of king Cyrus.

And in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams, wherewith his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him.

Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, for to shew the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king.

And the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream.

Then spake the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for ever: tell thy servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation.

The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me: if ye will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, ye shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill.

But if ye shew the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honour: therefore shew me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.

They answered again and said, Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation of it.

The king answered and said, I know of certainty that ye would gain the time, because ye see the thing is gone from me.

But if ye will not make known unto me the dream, there is but one decree for you: for ye have prepared lying and corrupt words to speak before me, till the time be changed: therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that ye can shew me the interpretation thereof.

10 The Chaldeans answered before the king, and said, There is not a man upon the earth that can shew the king's matter: therefore there is no king, lord, nor ruler, that asked such things at any magician, or astrologer, or Chaldean.

11 And it is a rare thing that the king requireth, and there is none other that can shew it before the king, except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.

12 For this cause the king was angry and very furious, and commanded to destroy all the wise men of Babylon.

13 And the decree went forth that the wise men should be slain; and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain.

14 Then Daniel answered with counsel and wisdom to Arioch the captain of the king's guard, which was gone forth to slay the wise men of Babylon:

15 He answered and said to Arioch the king's captain, Why is the decree so hasty from the king? Then Arioch made the thing known to Daniel.

16 Then Daniel went in, and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would shew the king the interpretation.

17 Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions:

18 That they would desire mercies of the God of heaven concerning this secret; that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.

19 Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven.

20 Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his:

21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:

22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.

23 I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast now made known unto us the king's matter.

1 Peter 3:8-4:6

Suffering for Doing Good

Finally, all of you, be like-minded,S Ro 15:5 be sympathetic, love one another,S Ro 12:10 be compassionate and humble.Eph 4:2; 1Pe 5:5Do not repay evil with evilRo 12:17; 1Th 5:15 or insult with insult.1Pe 2:23 On the contrary, repay evil with blessing,S Mt 5:44 because to thisS 1Pe 2:21 you were calledS Ro 8:28 so that you may inherit a blessing.Heb 6:1410 For,

“Whoever would love life

and see good days

must keep their tongue from evil

and their lips from deceitful speech.

11 They must turn from evil and do good;

they must seek peace and pursue it.

12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous

and his ears are attentive to their prayer,

but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”Psalm 34:12-16Ps 34:12-16

13 Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good?S Tit 2:1414 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed.ver 17; 1Pe 2:19, 20; 4:15, 16 “Do not fear their threatsOr fear what they fear; do not be frightened.”Isaiah 8:12Isa 8:12, 1315 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answerCol 4:6 to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hopeS Heb 3:6 that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,16 keeping a clear conscience,ver 21; S Ac 23:1 so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.1Pe 2:12, 1517 For it is better, if it is God’s will,1Pe 2:15; 4:19 to suffer for doing good1Pe 2:20; 4:15, 16 than for doing evil.18 For Christ also suffered onceS Heb 7:27 for sins,1Pe 2:21; 4:1, 13 the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.S Ro 5:2 He was put to death in the bodyCol 1:22; 1Pe 4:1 but made alive in the Spirit.1Pe 4:619 After being made alive,Or but made alive in the spirit, 19 in which also he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits1Pe 4:620 to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patientlyS Ro 2:4 in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.Ge 6:3, 5, 13, 14 In it only a few people, eight in all,Ge 8:18 were savedHeb 11:7 through water,21 and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves youS Ac 22:16 also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear consciencever 16; S Ac 23:1 toward God.Or but an appeal to God for a clear conscience It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ,1Pe 1:322 who has gone into heavenS Heb 4:14 and is at God’s right handS Mk 16:19—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.S Mt 28:18; S Ro 8:38

Living for God

Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body,S 1Pe 2:21 arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because whoever suffers in the body is done with sin.S Ro 6:18As a result, they do not live the rest of their earthly lives for evil human desires,Ro 6:2; 1Pe 1:14 but rather for the will of God.For you have spent enough time in the pastS Eph 2:2 doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.S Ro 13:13They are surprised that you do not join them in their reckless, wild living, and they heap abuse on you.1Pe 3:16But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.S Ac 10:42For this is the reason the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead,1Pe 3:19 so that they might be judged according to human standards in regard to the body, but live according to God in regard to the spirit.

All Christians

Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters.Greek Show brotherly love. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will grant you his blessing.10 For the Scriptures say,

“If you want to enjoy life

and see many happy days,

keep your tongue from speaking evil

and your lips from telling lies.

11 Turn away from evil and do good.

Search for peace, and work to maintain it.

12 The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right,

and his ears are open to their prayers.

But the Lord turns his face

against those who do evil.”Ps 34:12-16.

Suffering for Doing Good

13 Now, who will want to harm you if you are eager to do good?14 But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats.15 Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.16 But do this in a gentle and respectful way.Some English translations put this sentence in verse 15. Keep your conscience clear. Then if people speak against you, they will be ashamed when they see what a good life you live because you belong to Christ.17 Remember, it is better to suffer for doing good, if that is what God wants, than to suffer for doing wrong!

18 Christ sufferedSome manuscripts read died. for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit.Or in spirit.

19 So he went and preached to the spirits in prison—20 those who disobeyed God long ago when God waited patiently while Noah was building his boat. Only eight people were saved from drowning in that terrible flood.Greek saved through water.21 And that water is a picture of baptism, which now saves you, not by removing dirt from your body, but as a response to God fromOr as an appeal to God for. a clean conscience. It is effective because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

22 Now Christ has gone to heaven. He is seated in the place of honor next to God, and all the angels and authorities and powers accept his authority.

Living for God

So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin.Or For the one [or One] who has suffered physically has finished with sin.You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God.You have had enough in the past of the evil things that godless people enjoy—their immorality and lust, their feasting and drunkenness and wild parties, and their terrible worship of idols.

Of course, your former friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you.But remember that they will have to face God, who stands ready to judge everyone, both the living and the dead.That is why the Good News was preached to those who are now deadGreek preached even to the dead.—so although they were destined to die like all people,Or so although people had judged them worthy of death. they now live forever with God in the Spirit.Or in spirit.

Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:

Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.

10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:

11 Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.

12 For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.

13 And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?

14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;

15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

16 Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.

17 For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.

18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

21 The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

22 Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.

Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;

That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.

For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:

Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:

Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.

For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

Psalm 119:65-80

ט Teth

65 Do goodver 17; Ps 125:4; Isa 50:2; 59:1; Mic 2:7 to your servant

according to your word,S ver 9 Lord.

66 Teach me knowledgeS Ps 51:6 and good judgment,

for I trust your commands.

67 Before I was afflictedS Ps 116:10 I went astray,S Ps 95:10; S Jer 8:4

but now I obey your word.S ver 17

68 You are good,Ps 100:5; 106:1; 107:1; 135:3 and what you do is good;

teach me your decrees.S Ex 18:20

69 Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies,Job 13:4; Ps 109:2

I keep your precepts with all my heart.

70 Their hearts are callousS Ps 17:10; Isa 29:13; Ac 28:27 and unfeeling,

but I delight in your law.

71 It was good for me to be afflictedver 67, 75

so that I might learn your decrees.

72 The law from your mouth is more precious to me

than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.S Job 28:17; S Ps 19:10

י Yodh

73 Your hands made meS Ge 1:27; S Job 4:17; 10:8; Ps 138:8; 139:13-16 and formed me;

give me understanding to learn your commands.

74 May those who fear you rejoiceS Ps 34:2 when they see me,

for I have put my hope in your word.ver 9; Ps 130:5

75 I know, Lord, that your laws are righteous,ver 7, 138, 172

and that in faithfulnessHeb 12:5-11 you have afflicted me.

76 May your unfailing lovePs 6:4 be my comfort,

according to your promiseS ver 41 to your servant.

77 Let your compassionPs 90:13; 103:13 come to me that I may live,

for your law is my delight.S ver 47

78 May the arrogantver 51; Jer 50:32 be put to shame for wronging me without cause;ver 86, 161; Ps 35:19

but I will meditate on your precepts.

79 May those who fear you turn to me,

those who understand your statutes.ver 27, 125

80 May I wholeheartedly followver 1; S 1Ki 8:61 your decrees,S Ge 26:5

that I may not be put to shame.S ver 6

Teth

65 You have done many good things for me, Lord,

just as you promised.

66 I believe in your commands;

now teach me good judgment and knowledge.

67 I used to wander off until you disciplined me;

but now I closely follow your word.

68 You are good and do only good;

teach me your decrees.

69 Arrogant people smear me with lies,

but in truth I obey your commandments with all my heart.

70 Their hearts are dull and stupid,

but I delight in your instructions.

71 My suffering was good for me,

for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees.

72 Your instructions are more valuable to me

than millions in gold and silver.

Yodh

73 You made me; you created me.

Now give me the sense to follow your commands.

74 May all who fear you find in me a cause for joy,

for I have put my hope in your word.

75 I know, O Lord, that your regulations are fair;

you disciplined me because I needed it.

76 Now let your unfailing love comfort me,

just as you promised me, your servant.

77 Surround me with your tender mercies so I may live,

for your instructions are my delight.

78 Bring disgrace upon the arrogant people who lied about me;

meanwhile, I will concentrate on your commandments.

79 Let me be united with all who fear you,

with those who know your laws.

80 May I be blameless in keeping your decrees;

then I will never be ashamed.

65 Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O Lord, according unto thy word.

66 Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed thy commandments.

67 Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word.

68 Thou art good, and doest good; teach me thy statutes.

69 The proud have forged a lie against me: but I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart.

70 Their heart is as fat as grease; but I delight in thy law.

71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.

72 The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands of gold and silver.

73 Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.

74 They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word.

75 I know, O Lord, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.

76 Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant.

77 Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight.

78 Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause: but I will meditate in thy precepts.

79 Let those that fear thee turn unto me, and those that have known thy testimonies.

80 Let my heart be sound in thy statutes; that I be not ashamed.

Proverbs 28:14

14 Blessed is the one who always trembles before God,

but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.

14 Blessed are those who fear to do wrong,Or those who fear the Lord; Hebrew reads those who fear.

but the stubborn are headed for serious trouble.

14 Happy is the man that feareth alway: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief.

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