Monday, May 3, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Monday, May 3, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Monday, May 3, 2021
Psalm 80; Isaiah 5:1-7; Galatians 5:16-26 (NIV)
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Today’s Verse-of-the-Day:
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Christian’s hope is a cause for joy. Enduring triumphantly—necessary for Christians, because affliction is their inevitable experience. One must not only pray in hard times but also maintain communion with God through prayer at all times.

Today’s Readings:
A Reading from the Book of Psalms
Psalm 80
Israel the Vine


1 Hear us, Shepherd of Israel,
    you who lead Joseph like a flock.
  You who sit enthroned between the cherubim,
     shine forth
2 before Ephraim, Benjamin and Manasseh.
  Awaken your might;
     come and save us.

3 Restore us, O God;
     make your face shine on us,
     that we may be saved.

4 How long, Lord God Almighty,
     will your anger smolder
     against the prayers of your people?
5 You have fed them with the bread of tears;
     you have made them drink tears by the bowlful.
6 You have made us an object of derision to our neighbors,
     and our enemies mock us.

7 Restore us, God Almighty;
     make your face shine on us,
     that we may be saved.

8 You transplanted a vine from Egypt;
     you drove out the nations and planted it.
9 You cleared the ground for it,
     and it took root and filled the land.
10 The mountains were covered with its shade,
      the mighty cedars with its branches.
11 Its branches reached as far as the Sea,
      its shoots as far as the River.

12 Why have you broken down its walls
      so that all who pass by pick its grapes?
13 Boars from the forest ravage it,
      and insects from the fields feed on it.
14 Return to us, God Almighty!
      Look down from heaven and see!
   Watch over this vine,
15    the root your right hand has planted,
      the son you have raised up for yourself.

16 Your vine is cut down, it is burned with fire;
      at your rebuke your people perish.
17 Let your hand rest on the man at your right hand,
      the son of man you have raised up for yourself.
18 Then we will not turn away from you;
      revive us, and we will call on your name.

19 Restore us, Lord God Almighty;
      make your face shine on us,
      that we may be saved.


Commentary
Verses 1-7 — He that dwells upon the mercy-seat, is the good Shepherd of his people. But we can neither expect the comfort of his love, nor the protection of his arm, unless we partake of his converting grace. If he is really angry at the prayers of his people, it is because, although they pray, their ends are not right, or there is some secret sin indulged in them, or he will try their patience and perseverance in prayer. When God is displeased with his people, we must expect to see them in tears, and their enemies in triumph. There is no salvation but from God's favor; there is no conversion to God but by his own grace.

Verses 8-16 — The church is represented as a vine and a vineyard. The root of this vine is Christ, the branches are believers. The church is like a vine, needing support, but spreading and fruitful. If a vine do not bring forth fruit, no tree is so worthless. And are not we planted as in a well-cultivated garden, with every means of being fruitful in works of righteousness? But the useless leaves of profession, and the empty boughs of notions and forms, abound far more than real piety. It was wasted and ruined. There was a good reason for this change in God's way toward them. And it is well or ill with us, according as we are under God's smiles or frowns. When we consider the state of the purest part of the visible church, we cannot wonder that it is visited with sharp corrections. They request that God would help the vine. Lord, it is formed by thyself, and for thyself, therefore it may, with humble confidence, be committed to thyself.

Verses 17-19 — The Messiah, the Protector and Savior of the church, is the Man of God's right hand; he is the Arm of the Lord, for all power is given to him. In him is our strength, by which we are enabled to persevere to the end. The vine, therefore, cannot be ruined, nor can any fruitful branch perish; but the unfruitful will be cut off and cast into the fire. The end of our redemption is, that we should serve Him who hath redeemed us, and not go back to our old sins.


A Reading from the Old Testament
Isaiah 5:1-7
The Unfaithful Vineyard


1 I will sing for the one I love
     a song about his vineyard:
  My loved one had a vineyard
     on a fertile hillside.
2 He dug it up and cleared it of stones
     and planted it with the choicest vines.
  He built a watchtower in it
     and cut out a winepress as well.
  Then he looked for a crop of good grapes,
     but it yielded only bad fruit.

3 “Now you dwellers in Jerusalem and people of Judah,
     judge between me and my vineyard.
4 What more could have been done for my vineyard
     than I have done for it?
  When I looked for good grapes,
     why did it yield only bad?
5 Now I will tell you
     what I am going to do to my vineyard:
  I will take away its hedge,
     and it will be destroyed;
  I will break down its wall,
     and it will be trampled.
6 I will make it a wasteland,
     neither pruned nor cultivated,
     and briers and thorns will grow there.
  I will command the clouds
     not to rain on it.”

7 The vineyard of the Lord Almighty
     is the nation of Israel,
  and the people of Judah
     are the vines he delighted in.
  And he looked for justice, but saw bloodshed;
     for righteousness, but heard cries of distress.


Commentary
Christ is God's beloved Son, and our beloved Savior. The care of the Lord over the church of Israel, is described by the management of a vineyard. The advantages of our situation will be brought into the account another day. He planted it with the choicest vines; gave them a most excellent law, instituted proper ordinances. The temple was a tower, where God gave tokens of his presence. He set up his altar, to which the sacrifices should be brought; all the means of grace are denoted thereby. God expects fruit from those that enjoy privileges. Good purposes and good beginnings are good things, but not enough; there must be vineyard fruit; thoughts and affections, words and actions, agreeable to the Spirit. It brought forth bad fruit. Wild grapes are the fruits of the corrupt nature. Where grace does not work, corruption will. But the wickedness of those that profess religion, and enjoy the means of grace, must be upon the sinners themselves. They shall no longer be a peculiar people. When errors and vice go without check or control, the vineyard is unpruned; then it will soon be grown over with thorns. This is often shown in the departure of God's Spirit from those who have long striven against him, and the removal of his gospel from places which have long been a reproach to it. The explanation is given. It is sad with a soul, when, instead of the grapes of humility, meekness, love, patience, and contempt of the world, for which God looks, there are the wild grapes of pride, passion, discontent, and malice, and contempt of God; instead of the grapes of praying and praising, the wild grapes of cursing and swearing. Let us bring forth fruit with patience, that in the end we may obtain everlasting life.


A Reading from the New Testament
Galatians 5:16-26
The Fruits of the Spirit


5:16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

Commentary
If it be our care to act under the guidance and power of the blessed Spirit, though we may not be freed from the stirrings and oppositions of the corrupt nature which remains in us, it shall not have dominion over us. Believers are engaged in a conflict, in which they earnestly desire that grace may obtain full and speedy victory. And those who desire thus to give themselves up to be led by the Holy Spirit, are not under the law as a covenant of works, nor exposed to its awful curse. Their hatred of sin, and desires after holiness, show that they have a part in the salvation of the gospel. The works of the flesh are many and manifest. And these sins will shut men out of heaven. Yet what numbers, calling themselves Christians, live in these, and say they hope for heaven! The fruits of the Spirit, or of the renewed nature, which we are to do, are named. And as the apostle had chiefly named works of the flesh, not only hurtful to men themselves, but tending to make them so to one another, so here he chiefly notices the fruits of the Spirit, which tend to make Christians agreeable one to another, as well as to make them happy. The fruits of the Spirit plainly show, that such are led by the Spirit. By describing the works of the flesh and fruits of the Spirit, we are told what to avoid and oppose, and what we are to cherish and cultivate; and this is the sincere care and endeavor of all real Christians. Sin does not now reign in their mortal bodies, so that they obey it, Romans 6:12, for they seek to destroy it. Christ never will own those who yield themselves up to be the servants of sin. And it is not enough that we cease to do evil, but we must learn to do well. Our conversation will always be answerable to the principle which guides and governs us, Romans 8:5. We must set ourselves in earnest to mortify the deeds of the body, and to walk in newness of life. Not being desirous of vain-glory, or unduly wishing for the esteem and applause of men, not provoking or envying one another, but seeking to bring forth more abundantly those good fruits, which are, through Jesus Christ, to the praise and glory of God.



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 Daily Bible 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

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