August 31 – Job 27-28, Ephesians 1:15-23, Psalm 57, Proverbs 22:16

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Job 27-28

Job Continues: I Will Maintain My Integrity

27 And Job again took up his discourse, and said:

“As God lives, who has taken away my right,
    and the Almighty, who has made my soul bitter,
as long as my breath is in me,
    and the spirit of God is in my nostrils,
my lips will not speak falsehood,
    and my tongue will not utter deceit.
Far be it from me to say that you are right;
    till I die I will not put away my integrity from me.
I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go;
    my heart does not reproach me for any of my days.

“Let my enemy be as the wicked,
    and let him who rises up against me be as the unrighteous.
For what is the hope of the godless when God cuts him off,
    when God takes away his life?
Will God hear his cry
    when distress comes upon him?
10 Will he take delight in the Almighty?
    Will he call upon God at all times?
11 I will teach you concerning the hand of God;
    what is with the Almighty I will not conceal.
12 Behold, all of you have seen it yourselves;
    why then have you become altogether vain?

13 “This is the portion of a wicked man with God,
    and the heritage that oppressors receive from the Almighty:
14 If his children are multiplied, it is for the sword,
    and his descendants have not enough bread.
15 Those who survive him the pestilence buries,
    and his widows do not weep.
16 Though he heap up silver like dust,
    and pile up clothing like clay,
17 he may pile it up, but the righteous will wear it,
    and the innocent will divide the silver.
18 He builds his house like a moth’s,
    like a booth that a watchman makes.
19 He goes to bed rich, but will do so no more;
    he opens his eyes, and his wealth is gone.
20 Terrors overtake him like a flood;
    in the night a whirlwind carries him off.
21 The east wind lifts him up and he is gone;
    it sweeps him out of his place.
22 It[a] hurls at him without pity;
    he flees from its[b] power in headlong flight.
23 It claps its hands at him
    and hisses at him from its place.

Job Continues: Where Is Wisdom?

28 “Surely there is a mine for silver,
    and a place for gold that they refine.
Iron is taken out of the earth,
    and copper is smelted from the ore.
Man puts an end to darkness
    and searches out to the farthest limit
    the ore in gloom and deep darkness.
He opens shafts in a valley away from where anyone lives;
    they are forgotten by travelers;
    they hang in the air, far away from mankind; they swing to and fro.
As for the earth, out of it comes bread,
    but underneath it is turned up as by fire.
Its stones are the place of sapphires,[c]
    and it has dust of gold.

“That path no bird of prey knows,
    and the falcon’s eye has not seen it.
The proud beasts have not trodden it;
    the lion has not passed over it.

“Man puts his hand to the flinty rock
    and overturns mountains by the roots.
10 He cuts out channels in the rocks,
    and his eye sees every precious thing.
11 He dams up the streams so that they do not trickle,
    and the thing that is hidden he brings out to light.

12 “But where shall wisdom be found?
    And where is the place of understanding?
13 Man does not know its worth,
    and it is not found in the land of the living.
14 The deep says, ‘It is not in me,’
    and the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’
15 It cannot be bought for gold,
    and silver cannot be weighed as its price.
16 It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir,
    in precious onyx or sapphire.
17 Gold and glass cannot equal it,
    nor can it be exchanged for jewels of fine gold.
18 No mention shall be made of coral or of crystal;
    the price of wisdom is above pearls.
19 The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it,
    nor can it be valued in pure gold.

20 “From where, then, does wisdom come?
    And where is the place of understanding?
21 It is hidden from the eyes of all living
    and concealed from the birds of the air.
22 Abaddon and Death say,
    ‘We have heard a rumor of it with our ears.’

23 “God understands the way to it,
    and he knows its place.
24 For he looks to the ends of the earth
    and sees everything under the heavens.
25 When he gave to the wind its weight
    and apportioned the waters by measure,
26 when he made a decree for the rain
    and a way for the lightning of the thunder,
27 then he saw it and declared it;
    he established it, and searched it out.
28 And he said to man,
‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom,
    and to turn away from evil is understanding.’”

Ephesians 1:15-23

Thanksgiving and Prayer

15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love[a] toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

Psalm 57

Let Your Glory Be over All the Earth

To the choirmaster: according to Do Not Destroy. A Miktam[a] of David, when he fled from Saul, in the cave.

57 Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me,
    for in you my soul takes refuge;
in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge,
    till the storms of destruction pass by.
I cry out to God Most High,
    to God who fulfills his purpose for me.
He will send from heaven and save me;
    he will put to shame him who tramples on me. Selah
God will send out his steadfast love and his faithfulness!

My soul is in the midst of lions;
    I lie down amid fiery beasts—
the children of man, whose teeth are spears and arrows,
    whose tongues are sharp swords.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!

They set a net for my steps;
    my soul was bowed down.
They dug a pit in my way,
    but they have fallen into it themselves. Selah
My heart is steadfast, O God,
    my heart is steadfast!
I will sing and make melody!
    Awake, my glory![b]
Awake, O harp and lyre!
    I will awake the dawn!
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
    I will sing praises to you among the nations.
10 For your steadfast love is great to the heavens,
    your faithfulness to the clouds.

11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!

Proverbs 22:16

16 Whoever oppresses the poor to increase his own wealth,
    or gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.