Saturday, October 2, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Saturday, October 2, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Saturday, October 2, 2021
Psalm 26; Job 7:1-21; Luke 16:14-18
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Introduction
In today’s lectionary readings, the psalmist apparently has been accused of some covenant violation. In our reading in Job, in response to his friend Eliphaz, Job cries out to God. The overall theme in our gospel reading has to do with the authority of Jesus and God’s Word versus the self-proclaimed authority of the Pharisees, who are rejecting Jesus and God’s Word. In our verse of the day, the fear of man should never keep us from speaking out for Christ.

Today’s Verse of the Day:
Proverbs 29:25

Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.
True security is the result of trusting God and not other humans. Fear of others becomes a snare when it gets to the point of letting others control your life—their opinions and attitudes put subtle pressure on you, even hindering you from speaking the truth or doing what is right. Release from such bondage comes when people put their faith in the Lord alone.

Today’s Lectionary Readings:
From the Psalter

Psalm 26
Your Love is Before My Eyes


1 Vindicate me, Lord,
     for I have led a blameless life;
  I have trusted in the Lord
     and have not faltered.
2 Test me, Lord, and try me,
     examine my heart and my mind;
3 for I have always been mindful of your unfailing love
     and have lived in reliance on your faithfulness.

4 I do not sit with the deceitful,
     nor do I associate with hypocrites.
5 I abhor the assembly of evildoers
     and refuse to sit with the wicked.
6 I wash my hands in innocence,
     and go about your altar, Lord,
7 proclaiming aloud your praise
     and telling of all your wonderful deeds.

8 Lord, I love the house where you live,
     the place where your glory dwells.
9 Do not take away my soul along with sinners,
     my life with those who are bloodthirsty,
10 in whose hands are wicked schemes,
      whose right hands are full of bribes.
11 I lead a blameless life;
      deliver me and be merciful to me.

12 My feet stand on level ground;
      in the great congregation I will praise the Lord.


Commentary
Verses 1-5: David appeals to God to support him against those who plot evil against him. God has done a work of grace in his life, and this causes him to hate the company of worthless people and make every effort to live the sort of life that pleases God.

Verses 6-8:
He desires righteousness, delights in worship, loves to spend hours in the house of God and enjoys telling others about God.

Verses 11-12: He therefore asks that he will not suffer the same end as the wicked (9-10). Though determined to do right, he knows that he will not succeed without God’s help.


From the Books of Wisdom
Job 7:1-21
Job Asks Why Life is So Hard


1 “Do not mortals have hard service on earth?
     Are not their days like those of hired laborers?
2 Like a slave longing for the evening shadows,
     or a hired laborer waiting to be paid,
3 so I have been allotted months of futility,
     and nights of misery have been assigned to me.
4 When I lie down I think, ‘How long before I get up?’
     The night drags on, and I toss and turn until dawn.
5 My body is clothed with worms and scabs,
     my skin is broken and festering.

6 “My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle,
     and they come to an end without hope.
7 Remember, O God, that my life is but a breath;
     my eyes will never see happiness again.
8 The eye that now sees me will see me no longer;
     you will look for me, but I will be no more.
9 As a cloud vanishes and is gone,
     so one who goes down to the grave does not return.
10 He will never come to his house again;
       his place will know him no more.

11 “Therefore I will not keep silent;
      I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit,
      I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.
12 Am I the sea, or the monster of the deep,
      that you put me under guard?
13 When I think my bed will comfort me
      and my couch will ease my complaint,
14 even then you frighten me with dreams
      and terrify me with visions,
15 so that I prefer strangling and death,
      rather than this body of mine.
16 I despise my life; I would not live forever.
      Let me alone; my days have no meaning.

17 “What is mankind that you make so much of them,
      that you give them so much attention,
18 that you examine them every morning
      and test them every moment?
19 Will you never look away from me,
      or let me alone even for an instant?
20 If I have sinned, what have I done to you,
      you who see everything we do?
   Why have you made me your target?
      Have I become a burden to you?
21 Why do you not pardon my offenses
      and forgive my sins?
   For I will soon lie down in the dust;
      you will search for me, but I will be no more.”


Commentary
Verses 1-6: Job here excuses what he could not justify, his desire of death. Observe man's present place: he is upon earth. He is yet on earth, not in hell. Is there not a time appointed for his abode here? yes, certainly, and the appointment is made by Him who made us and sent us here. During that, man's life is a warfare, and as day-laborers, who have the work of the day to do in its day, and must make up their account at night. Job had as much reason, he thought, to wish for death, as a poor servant that is tired with his work, has to wish for the shadows of the evening, when he shall go to rest. The sleep of the laboring man is sweet; nor can any rich man take so much satisfaction in his wealth, as the hireling in his day's wages. The comparison is plain; hear his complaint: His days were useless, and had long been so; but when we are not able to work for God, if we sit still quietly for him, we shall be accepted. His nights were restless. Whatever is grievous, it is good to see it appointed for us, and as designed for some holy end. When we have comfortable nights, we must see them also appointed to us, and be thankful for them. His body was noisome. See what vile bodies we have. His life was hastening apace. While we are living, every day, like the shuttle, leaves a thread behind: many weave the spider's web, which will fail, ch. Job 8:14. But if, while we live, we live unto the Lord, in works of faith and labors of love, we shall have the benefit, for every man shall reap as he sowed, and wear as he wove.

Verses 7-16: Plain truths as to the shortness and vanity of man's life, and the certainty of death, do us good, when we think and speak of them with application to ourselves. Dying is done but once, and therefore it had need be well done. An error here is past retrieve. Other clouds arise, but the same cloud never returns: so a new generation of men is raised up, but the former generation vanishes away. Glorified saints shall return no more to the cares and sorrows of their houses; nor condemned sinners to the gaieties and pleasures of their houses. It concerns us to secure a better place when we die. From these reasons Job might have drawn a better conclusion than this, I will complain. When we have but a few breaths to draw, we should spend them in the holy, gracious breathings of faith and prayer; not in the noisome, noxious breathings of sin and corruption. We have much reason to pray, that He who keeps Israel, and neither slumbers nor sleeps, may keep us when we slumber and sleep. Job covets to rest in his grave. Doubtless, this was his infirmity; for though a good man would choose death rather than sin, yet he should be content to live as long as God pleases, because life is our opportunity of glorifying him, and preparing for heaven.

Verses 17-21: Job reasons with God concerning his dealings with man. But in the midst of this discourse, Job seems to have lifted up his thoughts to God with some faith and hope. Observe the concern he is in about his sins. The best men have to complain of sin; and the better they are, the more they will complain of it. God is the Preserver of our lives, and the Savior of the souls of all that believe; but probably Job meant the Observer of men, whose eyes are upon the ways and hearts of all men. We can hide nothing from Him; let us plead guilty before his throne of grace, that we may not be condemned at his judgment-seat. Job maintained, against his friends, that he was not a hypocrite, not a wicked man, yet he owns to his God, that he had sinned. The best must so acknowledge, before the Lord. He seriously inquires how he might be at peace with God, and earnestly begs forgiveness of his sins. He means more than the removing of his outward trouble, and is earnest for the return of God's favor. Wherever the Lord removes the guilt of sin, he breaks the power of sin. To strengthen his prayer for pardon, Job pleads the prospect he had of dying quickly. If my sins be not pardoned while I live, I am lost and undone for ever. How wretched is sinful man without a knowledge of the Savior!


From the Gospels
Luke 16:14-18
The Law Endures


14 The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all this and were sneering at Jesus. 15 He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of others, but God knows your hearts. What people value highly is detestable in God’s sight.

16 “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John. Since that time, the good news of the kingdom of God is being preached, and everyone is forcing their way into it. 17 It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the least stroke of a pen to drop out of the Law.

18 “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.


Commentary
To this parable our Lord added a solemn warning. You cannot serve God and the world, so divided are the two interests. When our Lord spoke thus, the covetous Pharisees treated his instructions with contempt. But he warned them, that what they contended for as the law, was a wresting of its meaning: this our Lord showed in a case respecting divorce. There are many covetous sticklers for the forms of godliness, who are the bitterest enemies to its power, and try to set others against the truth.


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.

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