Saturday, May 1, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Saturday, May 1, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Saturday, May 1, 2021
Psalm 22:25-31; Amos 9:7-15; Mark 4:30-32 (NIV)
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Today’s Verse-of-the-Day:
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
Why is faith necessary to please God? Because we cannot serve Him unless we are convinced that He not only exists, but also that His plans for us are “good, pleasing and perfect” (Rom. 12:2). We must trust the Lord enough to walk in the center of His will, even if His commands seem unreasonable, impossible, or don’t make any sense to us. Like the biblical heroes of old, we bring even the smallest decisions to Him, knowing He will lead us in the best way.

Today’s Readings:
A Reading from the Book of Psalms
Psalm 22:25-31
All Shall Turn to the Lord


25 From you comes the theme of my praise in the great assembly;
      before those who fear you I will fulfill my vows.
26 The poor will eat and be satisfied;
      those who seek the Lord will praise him—
      may your hearts live forever!

27 All the ends of the earth
      will remember and turn to the Lord,
   and all the families of the nations
      will bow down before him,
28 for dominion belongs to the Lord
      and he rules over the nations.

29 All the rich of the earth will feast and worship;
      all who go down to the dust will kneel before him—
      those who cannot keep themselves alive.
30 Posterity will serve him;
      future generations will be told about the Lord.
31 They will proclaim his righteousness,
      declaring to a people yet unborn:
      He has done it!


Commentary
The Savior now speaks as risen from the dead. The first words of the complaint were used by Christ himself upon the cross; the first words of the triumph are expressly applied to him, Hebrews 2:12. All our praises must refer to the work of redemption. The suffering of the Redeemer was graciously accepted as a full satisfaction for sin. Though it was offered for sinful men, the Father did not despise or abhor it for our sake. This ought to be the matter of our thanksgiving. All humble, gracious souls should have a full satisfaction and happiness in him. Those that hunger and thirst after righteousness in Christ, shall not labor for that which satisfies not. Those that are much in praying, will be much in thanksgiving. Those that turn to God, will make conscience of worshipping before him. Let every tongue confess that he is Lord. High and low, rich and poor, bond and free, meet in Christ. Seeing we cannot keep alive our own souls, it is our wisdom, by obedient faith, to commit our souls to Christ, who is able to save and keep them alive for ever. A seed shall serve him. God will have a church in the world to the end of time. They shall be accounted to him for a generation; he will be the same to them that he was to those who went before them. His righteousness, and not any of their own, they shall declare to be the foundation of all their hopes, and the fountain of all their joys. Redemption by Christ is the Lord's own doing. Here we see the free love and compassion of God the Father, and of our Lord Jesus Christ, for us wretched sinners, as the source of all grace and consolation; the example we are to follow, the treatment as Christians we are to expect, and the conduct under it we are to adopt. Every lesson may here be learned that can profit the humbled soul. Let those who go about to establish their own righteousness inquire, why the beloved Son of God should thus suffer, if their own doings could atone for sin? Let the ungodly professor consider whether the Savior thus honored the Divine law, to purchase him the privilege of despising it. Let the careless take warning to flee from the wrath to come, and the trembling rest their hopes upon this merciful Redeemer. Let the tempted and distressed believer cheerfully expect a happy end of every trial.


A Reading from the Old Testament
Amos 9:7-15
The Mountains Shall Drip Sweet Wine


9:7 “Are not you Israelites
     the same to me as the Cushites?”
  declares the Lord.
  “Did I not bring Israel up from Egypt,
     the Philistines from Caphtor
     and the Arameans from Kir?

8 “Surely the eyes of the Sovereign Lord
     are on the sinful kingdom.
  I will destroy it
     from the face of the earth.
  Yet I will not totally destroy
     the descendants of Jacob,”
  declares the Lord.
9 “For I will give the command,
     and I will shake the people of Israel
     among all the nations
  as grain is shaken in a sieve,
    and not a pebble will reach the ground.
10 All the sinners among my people
      will die by the sword,
   all those who say,
      ‘Disaster will not overtake or meet us.’

11 “In that day

   “I will restore David’s fallen shelter—
      I will repair its broken walls
      and restore its ruins—
      and will rebuild it as it used to be,
12 so that they may possess the remnant of Edom
      and all the nations that bear my name,”
   declares the Lord, who will do these things.

13 “The days are coming,” declares the Lord,

   “when the reaper will be overtaken by the plowman
      and the planter by the one treading grapes.
   New wine will drip from the mountains
      and flow from all the hills,
14    and I will bring my people Israel back from exile.

   “They will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them.
      They will plant vineyards and drink their wine;
      they will make gardens and eat their fruit.
15 I will plant Israel in their own land,
      never again to be uprooted
      from the land I have given them,”

   says the Lord your God.


Commentary
Verses 7-10 — The prophet, in vision, saw the Lord standing upon the idolatrous altar at Bethel. Wherever sinners flee from God's justice, it will overtake them. Those whom God brings to heaven by his grace, shall never be cast down; but those who seek to climb thither by vain confidence in themselves, will be cast down and filled with shame. That which makes escape impossible and ruin sure, is, that God will set his eyes upon them for evil, not for good. Wretched must those be on whom the Lord looks for evil, and not for good. The Lord would scatter the Jews, and visit them with calamities, as the corn is shaken in a sieve; but he would save some from among them. The astonishing preservation of the Jews as a distinct people, seems here foretold. If professors make themselves like the world, God will level them with the world. The sinners who thus flatter themselves, shall find that their profession will not protect them.

Verses 11-15 — Christ died to gather together the children of God that were scattered abroad, here said to be those who were called by his name. The Lord saith this, who doeth this, who can do it, who has determined to do it, the power of whose grace is engaged for doing it. Amos 9:13-15 may refer to the early times of Christianity, but will receive a more glorious fulfillment in the events which all the prophets more or less foretold, and may be understood of the happy state when the fullness both of the Jews and the Gentiles come into the church. Let us continue earnest in prayer for the fulfillment of these prophecies, in the peace, purity, and the beauty of the church. God marvelously preserves his elect amidst the most fearful confusions and miseries. When all seems desperate, he wonderfully revives his church, and blesses her with all spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus. And great shall be the glory of that period, in which not one good thing promised shall remain unfulfilled.


A Reading from the New Testament
Mark 4:30-32
The Kingdom Like a Mustard Seed


4:30 Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? 31 It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. 32 Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.”

Commentary
The work of grace in the soul is, at first, but the day of small things; yet it has mighty products even now, while it is in its growth; but what will there be when it is perfected in heaven!



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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