Thursday, August 5, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Thursday, August 5, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Thursday, August 5, 2021
Psalm 130; 2 Samuel 13:37—14:24; Romans 15:1-6
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Introduction
In today’s lectionary readings, the psalm begins with a personal testimony of God’s rescue from the depths of guilt. From there, the author ascends step by step to a place where he can give confidence to others in their trust in God. From the Prophets, a widow pleads God’s mercy to the king and clemency toward poor guilty sinners. In our gospel reading, Paul asks the “strong” who are believers to live according to the Jewish standard for righteous Gentiles not to offend the “weak” who are Jews that have not yet trusted in Jesus as the Messiah. Our verse of the day teaches us as soon as a man enters upon reading the Scriptures, they immediately throw light into his mind.

Today’s Verse of the Day:
Psalm 119:130

The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.
God’s words are unfolded when they are opened, that is, when they are interpreted and explained. Alternatively, this word picture may simply suggest that God’s words are presented and accessible so they can be heard and taken to heart.

Today’s Lectionary Readings:
From the Psalter

Psalm 130
Out of the Depths Have I Called


1 Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord;
2    Lord, hear my voice.
  Let your ears be attentive
     to my cry for mercy.

3 If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,
     Lord, who could stand?
4 But with you there is forgiveness,
     so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

5 I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
     and in his word I put my hope.
6 I wait for the Lord
     more than watchmen wait for the morning,
     more than watchmen wait for the morning.

7 Israel, put your hope in the Lord,
     for with the Lord is unfailing love
     and with him is full redemption.
8 He himself will redeem Israel
     from all their sins.


Commentary
Verses 1-4: The only way of relief for a sin-entangled soul, is by applying to God alone. Many things present themselves as diversions, many things offer themselves as remedies, but the soul finds that the Lord alone can heal. And until men are sensible of the guilt of sin, and quit all to come at once to God, it is in vain for them to expect any relief. The Holy Ghost gives to such poor souls a fresh sense of their deep necessity, to stir them up in earnest applications, by the prayer of faith, by crying to God. And as they love their souls, as they are concerned for the glory of the Lord, they are not to be wanting in this duty. Why is it that these matters are so long uncertain with them? Is it not from sloth and despondency that they content themselves with common and customary applications to God? Then let us up and be doing; it must be done, and it is attended with safety. We are to humble ourselves before God, as guilty in his sight. Let us acknowledge our sinfulness; we cannot justify ourselves, or plead not guilty. It is our unspeakable comfort that there is forgiveness with him, for that is what we need. Jesus Christ is the great Ransom; he is ever an Advocate for us, and through him we hope to obtain forgiveness. There is forgiveness with thee, not that thou mayest be presumed upon, but that thou mayest be feared. The fear of God often is put for the whole worship of God. The only motive and encouragement for sinners is this, that there is forgiveness with the Lord.

Verses 5-8: It is for the Lord that my soul waits, for the gifts of his grace, and the working of his power. We must hope for that only which he has promised in his word. Like those who wish to see the dawn, being very desirous that light would come long before day; but still more earnestly does a good man long for the tokens of God's favor, and the visits of his grace. Let all that devote themselves to the Lord, cheerfully stay themselves on him. This redemption is redemption from all sin. Jesus Christ saves his people from their sins, both from the condemning and from the commanding power of sin. It is plenteous redemption; there is an all-sufficient fullness in the Redeemer, enough for all, enough for each; therefore enough for me, says the believer. Redemption from sin includes redemption from all other evils, therefore it is a plenteous redemption, through the atoning blood of Jesus, who shall redeem his people from all their sins. All that wait on God for mercy and grace, are sure to have peace.


From the Books of the Prophets
2 Samuel 13:37—14:24
The Wise Woman of Tekoa


13:37 Absalom fled and went to Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur. But King David mourned many days for his son.

38 After Absalom fled and went to Geshur, he stayed there three years. 39 And King David longed to go to Absalom, for he was consoled concerning Amnon’s death.

14:
1 Joab son of Zeruiah knew that the king’s heart longed for Absalom. 2 So Joab sent someone to Tekoa and had a wise woman brought from there. He said to her, “Pretend you are in mourning. Dress in mourning clothes, and don’t use any cosmetic lotions. Act like a woman who has spent many days grieving for the dead. 3 Then go to the king and speak these words to him.” And Joab put the words in her mouth.

4 When the woman from Tekoa went to the king, she fell with her face to the ground to pay him honor, and she said, “Help me, Your Majesty!”

5 The king asked her, “What is troubling you?”

She said, “I am a widow; my husband is dead.
6 I your servant had two sons. They got into a fight with each other in the field, and no one was there to separate them. One struck the other and killed him. 7 Now the whole clan has risen up against your servant; they say, ‘Hand over the one who struck his brother down, so that we may put him to death for the life of his brother whom he killed; then we will get rid of the heir as well.’ They would put out the only burning coal I have left, leaving my husband neither name nor descendant on the face of the earth.”

8 The king said to the woman, “Go home, and I will issue an order in your behalf.”

9 But the woman from Tekoa said to him, “Let my lord the king pardon me and my family, and let the king and his throne be without guilt.”

10 The king replied, “If anyone says anything to you, bring them to me, and they will not bother you again.”

11 She said, “Then let the king invoke the Lord his God to prevent the avenger of blood from adding to the destruction, so that my son will not be destroyed.”

“As surely as the Lord lives,” he said, “not one hair of your son’s head will fall to the ground.”

12 Then the woman said, “Let your servant speak a word to my lord the king.”

“Speak,” he replied.

13 The woman said, “Why then have you devised a thing like this against the people of God? When the king says this, does he not convict himself, for the king has not brought back his banished son? 14 Like water spilled on the ground, which cannot be recovered, so we must die. But that is not what God desires; rather, he devises ways so that a banished person does not remain banished from him.

15 “And now I have come to say this to my lord the king because the people have made me afraid. Your servant thought, ‘I will speak to the king; perhaps he will grant his servant’s request. 16 Perhaps the king will agree to deliver his servant from the hand of the man who is trying to cut off both me and my son from God’s inheritance.’

17 “And now your servant says, ‘May the word of my lord the king secure my inheritance, for my lord the king is like an angel of God in discerning good and evil. May the Lord your God be with you.’”

18 Then the king said to the woman, “Don’t keep from me the answer to what I am going to ask you.”

“Let my lord the king speak,” the woman said.

19 The king asked, “Isn’t the hand of Joab with you in all this?”

The woman answered, “As surely as you live, my lord the king, no one can turn to the right or to the left from anything my lord the king says. Yes, it was your servant Joab who instructed me to do this and who put all these words into the mouth of your servant.
20 Your servant Joab did this to change the present situation. My lord has wisdom like that of an angel of God—he knows everything that happens in the land.”

21 The king said to Joab, “Very well, I will do it. Go, bring back the young man Absalom.”

22 Joab fell with his face to the ground to pay him honor, and he blessed the king. Joab said, “Today your servant knows that he has found favor in your eyes, my lord the king, because the king has granted his servant’s request.”

23 Then Joab went to Geshur and brought Absalom back to Jerusalem. 24 But the king said, “He must go to his own house; he must not see my face.” So Absalom went to his own house and did not see the face of the king.

Commentary
Verses 37-39: Instead of loathing Absalom as a murderer, David, after a time, longed to go forth to him. This was David's infirmity: God saw something in his heart that made a difference, else we should have thought that he, as much as Eli, honored his sons more than God.

Verses 1-20: We may notice here, how this widow pleads God's mercy, and his clemency toward poor guilty sinners. The state of sinners is a state of banishment from God. God pardons none to the dishonor of his law and justice, nor any who are impenitent; nor to the encouragement of crimes, or the hurt of others.

Verses 21-24: David was inclined to favor Absalom, yet, for the honor of his justice, he could not do it but upon application made for him, which may show the methods of Divine grace. It is true that God has thoughts of compassion toward poor sinners, not willing that any should perish; yet he is only reconciled to them through a Mediator, who pleads on their behalf. God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, and Christ came to this land of our banishment, to bring us to God.


From the Epistles
Romans 15:1-6
Living in Harmony


15:1 We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2 Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. 3 For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” 4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.

5 May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, 6 so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Commentary
Christian liberty was allowed, not for our pleasure, but for the glory of God, and the good of others. We must please our neighbor, for the good of his soul; not by serving his wicked will, and humoring him in a sinful way; if we thus seek to please men, we are not the servants of Christ. Christ's whole life was a self-denying, self-displeasing life. And he is the most advanced Christian, who is the most conformed to Christ. Considering his spotless purity and holiness, nothing could be more contrary to him, than to be made sin and a curse for us, and to have the reproaches of God fall upon him; the just for the unjust. He bore the guilt of sin, and the curse for it; we are only called to bear a little of the trouble of it. He bore the presumptuous sins of the wicked; we are called only to bear the failings of the weak. And should not we be humble, self-denying, and ready to consider one another, who are members one of another? The Scriptures are written for our use and benefit, as much as for those to whom they were first given. Those are most learned who are most mighty in the Scriptures. That comfort which springs from the word of God, is the surest and sweetest, and the greatest stay to hope. The Spirit as a Comforter, is the earnest of our inheritance. This like-mindedness must be according to the precept of Christ, according to his pattern and example. It is the gift of God; and a precious gift it is, for which we must earnestly seek unto him. Our Divine Master invites his disciples, and encourages them by showing himself as meek and lowly in spirit. The same disposition ought to mark the conduct of his servants, especially of the strong towards the weak. The great end in all our actions must be, that God may be glorified; nothing more forwards this, than the mutual love and kindness of those who profess religion. Those that agree in Christ may well agree among themselves.


Today’s Lectionary Readings are selected from the Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, a three-year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year B. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2021, we will be in Year C. The year which ended at Advent 2020 was Year A. These readings complement the Sunday and festival readings: Thursday through Saturday readings help prepare the reader for the Sunday ahead; Monday through Wednesday readings help the reader reflect and digest what they heard in worship. Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts. www.commontexts.org. The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle, and Gospel lessons are from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. Commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible.

The Morning Prayer for Thursday, August 5, 2021

 

The Morning Prayer
Thursday, August 5, 2021


Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God" (John 6:68–69, NIV).

Dear Father in heaven, we come to you and seek communion with you because we know that all life comes from you, all progress among us depends on you, and our innermost being can be strengthened through your Spirit. Protect us and renew our strength time and again so that your will may be done among us and we may all find courage for our lives, even when many difficulties loom up around us. Grant that we may remain your servants and go joyfully to meet what is to come. Bless us today and every day according to your promises. Amen.

Verse of the Day for Thursday, August 5, 2021

 

Verse of the Day
Thursday, August 5, 2021


Psalm 119:130
The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.
God’s words are unfolded when they are opened, that is, when they are interpreted and explained. Alternatively, this word picture may simply suggest that God’s words are presented and accessible so they can be heard and taken to heart.

Read all of Psalm 119

Listen to Psalm 119


Scripture from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.