Deut 32-34; Psalm 13; Luke 13
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The following text is from the English Standard Version.
‘Give ear, O heavens, and I will speak, and let the earth hear the words of my mouth.
May my teaching drop as the rain, my speech distill as the dew, like gentle rain upon the tender grass, and like showers upon the herb.
For I will proclaim the name of the LORD; ascribe greatness to our God!
‘The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he.
They have dealt corruptly with him; they are no longer his children because they are blemished; they are a crooked and twisted generation.
Do you thus repay the LORD, you foolish and senseless people? Is not he your father, who created you, who made you and established you?
Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you.
When the Most High gave to the nations their inheritance, when he divided mankind, he fixed the borders of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God.
But the LORD’s portion is his people, Jacob his allotted heritage.
‘He found him in a desert land, and in the howling waste of the wilderness; he encircled him, he cared for him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.
Like an eagle that stirs up its nest, that flutters over its young, spreading out its wings, catching them, bearing them on its pinions,
the LORD alone guided him, no foreign god was with him.
He made him ride on the high places of the land, and he ate the produce of the field, and he suckled him with honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock.
Curds from the herd, and milk from the flock, with fat of lambs, rams of Bashan and goats, with the very finest of the wheat–and you drank foaming wine made from the blood of the grape.
‘But Jeshurun grew fat, and kicked; you grew fat, stout, and sleek; then he forsook God who made him and scoffed at the Rock of his salvation.
They stirred him to jealousy with strange gods; with abominations they provoked him to anger.
They sacrificed to demons that were no gods, to gods they had never known, to new gods that had come recently, whom your fathers had never dreaded.
You were unmindful of the Rock that bore you, and you forgot the God who gave you birth.
‘The LORD saw it and spurned them, because of the provocation of his sons and his daughters.
And he said, ‘I will hide my face from them; I will see what their end will be, For they are a perverse generation, children in whom is no faithfulness.
They have made me jealous with what is no god; they have provoked me to anger with their idols. So I will make them jealous with those who are no people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.
For a fire is kindled by my anger, and it burns to the depths of Sheol, devours the earth and its increase, and sets on fire the foundations of the mountains.
”And I will heap disasters upon them; I will spend my arrows on them;
they shall be wasted with hunger, and devoured by plague and poisonous pestilence; I will send the teeth of beasts against them, with the venom of things that crawl in the dust.
Outdoors the sword shall bereave, and indoors terror, for young man and woman alike, the nursing child with the man of gray hairs.
I would have said, ”I will cut them to pieces; I will wipe them from human memory,”
had I not feared provocation by the enemy, lest their adversaries should misunderstand, lest they should say, ”Our hand is triumphant, it was not the LORD who did all this.”’
‘For they are a nation void of counsel, and there is no understanding in them.
If they were wise, they would understand this; they would discern their latter end!
How could one have chased a thousand, and two have put ten thousand to flight, unless their Rock had sold them, and the LORD had given them up?
For their rock is not as our Rock; our enemies are by themselves.
For their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah; their grapes are grapes of poison; their clusters are bitter;
their wine is the poison of serpents and the cruel venom of asps.
”Is not this laid up in store with me, sealed up in my treasuries?
Vengeance is mine, and recompense, for the time when their foot shall slip; for the day of their calamity is at hand, and their doom comes swiftly.’
For the LORD will vindicate his people and have compassion on his servants, when he sees that their power is gone and there is none remaining, bond or free.
Then he will say, ‘Where are their gods, the rock in which they took refuge,
who ate the fat of their sacrifices and drank the wine of their drink offering? Let them rise up and help you; let them be your protection!
”See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand.
For I lift up my hand to heaven and swear, As I live forever,
if I sharpen my flashing sword and my hand takes hold on judgment, I will take vengeance on my adversaries and will repay those who hate me.
I will make my arrows drunk with blood, and my sword shall devour flesh–with the blood of the slain and the captives, from the long-haired heads of the enemy.’
‘Rejoice with him, O heavens; bow down to him, all gods, for he avenges the blood of his children and takes vengeance on his adversaries. He repays those who hate him and cleanses his people’s land.”
Moses came and recited all the words of this song in the hearing of the people, he and Joshua the son of Nun.
And when Moses had finished speaking all these words to all Israel,
he said to them, ”Take to heart all the words by which I am warning you today, that you may command them to your children, that they may be careful to do all the words of this law.
For it is no empty word for you, but your very life, and by this word you shall live long in the land that you are going over the Jordan to possess.”
That very day the LORD spoke to Moses,
‘Go up this mountain of the Abarim, Mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, opposite Jericho, and view the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel for a possession.
And die on the mountain which you go up, and be gathered to your people, as Aaron your brother died in Mount Hor and was gathered to his people,
because you broke faith with me in the midst of the people of Israel at the waters of Meribah-kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin, and because you did not treat me as holy in the midst of the people of Israel.
For you shall see the land before you, but you shall not go there, into the land that I am giving to the people of Israel.”
This is the blessing with which Moses the man of God blessed the people of Israel before his death.
He said, ”The LORD came from Sinai and dawned from Seir upon us; he shone forth from Mount Paran; he came from the ten thousands of holy ones, with flaming fire at his right hand.
Yes, he loved his people, all his holy ones were in his hand; so they followed in your steps, receiving direction from you,
when Moses commanded us a law, as a possession for the assembly of Jacob.
Thus the LORD became king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people were gathered, all the tribes of Israel together.
‘Let Reuben live, and not die, but let his men be few.”
And this he said of Judah: ”Hear, O LORD, the voice of Judah, and bring him in to his people. With your hands contend for him, and be a help against his adversaries.”
And of Levi he said, ”Give to Levi your Thummim, and your Urim to your godly one, whom you tested at Massah, with whom you quarreled at the waters of Meribah;
who said of his father and mother, ‘I regard them not’; he disowned his brothers and ignored his children. For they observed your word and kept your covenant.
They shall teach Jacob your rules and Israel your law; they shall put incense before you and whole burnt offerings on your altar.
Bless, O LORD, his substance, and accept the work of his hands; crush the loins of his adversaries, of those who hate him, that they rise not again.”
Of Benjamin he said, ”The beloved of the LORD dwells in safety. The High God surrounds him all day long, and dwells between his shoulders.”
And of Joseph he said, ”Blessed by the LORD be his land, with the choicest gifts of heaven above, and of the deep that crouches beneath,
with the choicest fruits of the sun and the rich yield of the months,
with the finest produce of the ancient mountains and the abundance of the everlasting hills,
with the best gifts of the earth and its fullness and the favor of him who dwells in the bush. May these rest on the head of Joseph, on the pate of him who is prince among his brothers.
A firstborn bull–he has majesty, and his horns are the horns of a wild ox; with them he shall gore the peoples, all of them, to the ends of the earth; they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh.”
And of Zebulun he said, ”Rejoice, Zebulun, in your going out, and Issachar, in your tents.
They shall call peoples to their mountain; there they offer right sacrifices; for they draw from the abundance of the seas and the hidden treasures of the sand.”
And of Gad he said, ”Blessed be he who enlarges Gad! Gad crouches like a lion; he tears off arm and scalp.
He chose the best of the land for himself, for there a commander’s portion was reserved; and he came with the heads of the people, with Israel he executed the justice of the LORD, and his judgments for Israel.”
And of Dan he said, ”Dan is a lion’s cub that leaps from Bashan.”
And of Naphtali he said, ”O Naphtali, sated with favor, and full of the blessing of the LORD, possess the lake and the south.”
And of Asher he said, ”Most blessed of sons be Asher; let him be the favorite of his brothers, and let him dip his foot in oil.
Your bars shall be iron and bronze, and as your days, so shall your strength be.
‘There is none like God, O Jeshurun, who rides through the heavens to your help, through the skies in his majesty.
The eternal God is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms. And he thrust out the enemy before you and said, Destroy.
So Israel lived in safety, Jacob lived alone, in a land of grain and wine, whose heavens drop down dew.
Happy are you, O Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the LORD, the shield of your help, and the sword of your triumph! Your enemies shall come fawning to you, and you shall tread upon their backs.”
Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho. And the LORD showed him all the land, Gilead as far as Dan,
all Naphtali, the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the western sea,
the Negeb, and the Plain, that is, the Valley of Jericho the city of palm trees, as far as Zoar.
And the LORD said to him, ”This is the land of which I swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, ‘I will give it to your offspring.’ I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not go over there.”
So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD,
and he buried him in the valley in the land of Moab opposite Beth-peor; but no one knows the place of his burial to this day.
Moses was 120 years old when he died. His eye was undimmed, and his vigor unabated.
And the people of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days. Then the days of weeping and mourning for Moses were ended.
And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him. So the people of Israel obeyed him and did as the LORD had commanded Moses.
And there has not arisen a prophet since in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face,
none like him for all the signs and the wonders that the LORD sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his servants and to all his land,
and for all the mighty power and all the great deeds of terror that Moses did in the sight of all Israel.
How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
Consider and answer me, O LORD my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,
lest my enemy say, ”I have prevailed over him,” lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.
But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me.
There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.
And he answered them, ”Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way?
No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.
Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem?
No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
And he told this parable: ”A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none.
And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’
And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure.
Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.”’
Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath.
And there was a woman who had had a disabling spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not fully straighten herself.
When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said to her, ”Woman, you are freed from your disability.”
And he laid his hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and she glorified God.
But the ruler of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, said to the people, ”There are six days in which work ought to be done. Come on those days and be healed, and not on the Sabbath day.”
Then the Lord answered him, ”You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger and lead it away to water it?
And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day?”
As he said these things, all his adversaries were put to shame, and all the people rejoiced at all the glorious things that were done by him.
He said therefore, ”What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it?
It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”
And again he said, ”To what shall I compare the kingdom of God?
It is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, until it was all leavened.”
He went on his way through towns and villages, teaching and journeying toward Jerusalem.
And someone said to him, ”Lord, will those who are saved be few?” And he said to them,
‘Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, ‘I do not know where you come from.’
Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’
But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’
In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out.
And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God.
And behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”
At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to him, ”Get away from here, for Herod wants to kill you.”
And he said to them, ”Go and tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I finish my course.
Nevertheless, I must go on my way today and tomorrow and the day following, for it cannot be that a prophet should perish away from Jerusalem.’
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not!
Behold, your house is forsaken. And I tell you, you will not see me until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”’