August 30 – Job 24-26, Ephesians 1:1-14, Psalm 56, Proverbs 22:15

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Job 24-26

24 “Why are not times of judgment kept by the Almighty,
    and why do those who know him never see his days?
Some move landmarks;
    they seize flocks and pasture them.
They drive away the donkey of the fatherless;
    they take the widow’s ox for a pledge.
They thrust the poor off the road;
    the poor of the earth all hide themselves.
Behold, like wild donkeys in the desert
    the poor[a] go out to their toil, seeking game;
    the wasteland yields food for their children.
They gather their[b] fodder in the field,
    and they glean the vineyard of the wicked man.
They lie all night naked, without clothing,
    and have no covering in the cold.
They are wet with the rain of the mountains
    and cling to the rock for lack of shelter.
(There are those who snatch the fatherless child from the breast,
    and they take a pledge against the poor.)
10 They go about naked, without clothing;
    hungry, they carry the sheaves;
11 among the olive rows of the wicked[c] they make oil;
    they tread the winepresses, but suffer thirst.
12 From out of the city the dying[d] groan,
    and the soul of the wounded cries for help;
    yet God charges no one with wrong.

13 “There are those who rebel against the light,
    who are not acquainted with its ways,
    and do not stay in its paths.
14 The murderer rises before it is light,
    that he may kill the poor and needy,
    and in the night he is like a thief.
15 The eye of the adulterer also waits for the twilight,
    saying, ‘No eye will see me’;
    and he veils his face.
16 In the dark they dig through houses;
    by day they shut themselves up;
    they do not know the light.
17 For deep darkness is morning to all of them;
    for they are friends with the terrors of deep darkness.

18 “You say, ‘Swift are they on the face of the waters;
    their portion is cursed in the land;
    no treader turns toward their vineyards.
19 Drought and heat snatch away the snow waters;
    so does Sheol those who have sinned.
20 The womb forgets them;
    the worm finds them sweet;
they are no longer remembered,
    so wickedness is broken like a tree.’

21 “They wrong the barren, childless woman,
    and do no good to the widow.
22 Yet God[e] prolongs the life of the mighty by his power;
    they rise up when they despair of life.
23 He gives them security, and they are supported,
    and his eyes are upon their ways.
24 They are exalted a little while, and then are gone;
    they are brought low and gathered up like all others;
    they are cut off like the heads of grain.
25 If it is not so, who will prove me a liar
    and show that there is nothing in what I say?”

Bildad Speaks: Man Cannot Be Righteous

25 Then Bildad the Shuhite answered and said:

“Dominion and fear are with God;[f]
    he makes peace in his high heaven.
Is there any number to his armies?
    Upon whom does his light not arise?
How then can man be in the right before God?
    How can he who is born of woman be pure?
Behold, even the moon is not bright,
    and the stars are not pure in his eyes;
how much less man, who is a maggot,
    and the son of man, who is a worm!”

Job Replies: God’s Majesty Is Unsearchable

26 Then Job answered and said:

“How you have helped him who has no power!
    How you have saved the arm that has no strength!
How you have counseled him who has no wisdom,
    and plentifully declared sound knowledge!
With whose help have you uttered words,
    and whose breath has come out from you?
The dead tremble
    under the waters and their inhabitants.
Sheol is naked before God,[g]
    and Abaddon has no covering.
He stretches out the north over the void
    and hangs the earth on nothing.
He binds up the waters in his thick clouds,
    and the cloud is not split open under them.
He covers the face of the full moon[h]
    and spreads over it his cloud.
10 He has inscribed a circle on the face of the waters
    at the boundary between light and darkness.
11 The pillars of heaven tremble
    and are astounded at his rebuke.
12 By his power he stilled the sea;
    by his understanding he shattered Rahab.
13 By his wind the heavens were made fair;
    his hand pierced the fleeing serpent.
14 Behold, these are but the outskirts of his ways,
    and how small a whisper do we hear of him!
    But the thunder of his power who can understand?”

Ephesians 1:1-14

Greeting

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,

To the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful[a] in Christ Jesus:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Spiritual Blessings in Christ

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us[b] for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known[c] to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee[d] of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it,[e] to the praise of his glory.

Psalm 56

In God I Trust

To the choirmaster: according to The Dove on Far-off Terebinths. A Miktam[a] of David, when the Philistines seized him in Gath.

56 Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me;
    all day long an attacker oppresses me;
my enemies trample on me all day long,
    for many attack me proudly.
When I am afraid,
    I put my trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise,
    in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
    What can flesh do to me?

All day long they injure my cause;[b]
    all their thoughts are against me for evil.
They stir up strife, they lurk;
    they watch my steps,
    as they have waited for my life.
For their crime will they escape?
    In wrath cast down the peoples, O God!

You have kept count of my tossings;[c]
    put my tears in your bottle.
    Are they not in your book?
Then my enemies will turn back
    in the day when I call.
    This I know, that[d] God is for me.
10 In God, whose word I praise,
    in the Lord, whose word I praise,
11 in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
    What can man do to me?

12 I must perform my vows to you, O God;
    I will render thank offerings to you.
13 For you have delivered my soul from death,
    yes, my feet from falling,
that I may walk before God
    in the light of life.

Proverbs 22:15

15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child,
    but the rod of discipline drives it far from him.