Friday, July 16, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Friday, July 16, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Friday, July 16, 2021
Psalm 89:20-37; 1 Chronicles 14:1-2; Acts 17:16-31 (NIV)
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Introduction

In today’s lectionary readings, from the Psalter, we read about God’s Steadfast Love. From the historical books of the Old Testament, we read where Hiram builds David a house. Then from the book of Acts, Paul, in Athens, preaches from Mars’ Hill about the unknown god—He says, We are the offspring of God. In our verse-of-the-day, we read that in Christ, we have been brought to fullness.

Today’s Verse-of-the-Day:
Colossians 2:9-10

For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.
Paul warned the Colossians to guard themselves against empty, deceptive philosophies that were based on limited human reasoning. It may be impossible for us to comprehend how Jesus could be totally human and totally divine at the same time (John 1:1, 14; Phil. 2:6–8). But that is the clear teaching of Scripture, and we must accept it, even if we do not understand it. Jesus said, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). Everything that exists was created by Him and for Him. It is all under His authority, including all the nations, governments, and rulers of the earth. Of course, some people disagree with that—they do not acknowledge the lordship of Christ. But their opinion is irrelevant because one day “at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth” (Phil. 2:10).

Today’s Lectionary Readings:
From the Psalter

Psalm 89:20-37
God’s Steadfast Love


20 I have found David my servant;
      with my sacred oil I have anointed him.
21 My hand will sustain him;
      surely my arm will strengthen him.
22 The enemy will not get the better of him;
      the wicked will not oppress him.
23 I will crush his foes before him
      and strike down his adversaries.
24 My faithful love will be with him,
      and through my name his horn will be exalted.
25 I will set his hand over the sea,
      his right hand over the rivers.
26 He will call out to me, ‘You are my Father,
      my God, the Rock my Savior.’
27 And I will appoint him to be my firstborn,
      the most exalted of the kings of the earth.
28 I will maintain my love to him forever,
      and my covenant with him will never fail.
29 I will establish his line forever,
      his throne as long as the heavens endure.

30 “If his sons forsake my law
      and do not follow my statutes,
31 if they violate my decrees
      and fail to keep my commands,
32 I will punish their sin with the rod,
      their iniquity with flogging;
33 but I will not take my love from him,
      nor will I ever betray my faithfulness.
34 I will not violate my covenant
      or alter what my lips have uttered.
35 Once for all, I have sworn by my holiness—
      and I will not lie to David—
36 that his line will continue forever
      and his throne endure before me like the sun;
37 it will be established forever like the moon,
      the faithful witness in the sky.”


Commentary
The Lord anointed David with the holy oil, not only as an emblem of the graces and gifts he received, but as a type of Christ, the King Priest, and Prophet, anointed with the Holy Ghost without measure. David after his anointing, was persecuted, but none could gain advantage against him. Yet all this was a faint shadow of the Redeemer's sufferings, deliverance, glory, and authority, in whom alone these predictions and promises are fully brought to pass. He is the mighty God. This is the Redeemer appointed for us, who alone is able to complete the work of our salvation. Let us seek an interest in these blessings, by the witness of the Holy Spirit in our hearts. As the Lord corrected the posterity of David for their transgressions, so his people shall be corrected for their sins. Yet it is but a rod, not a sword; it is to correct, not to destroy. It is a rod in the hand of God, who is wise, and knows what he does; gracious, and will do what is best. It is a rod which they shall never feel, but when there is need. As the sun and moon remain in heaven, whatever changes there seem to be in them, and again appear in due season; so the covenant of grace made in Christ, whatever alteration seems to come to it, should not be questioned.

From the historical books of the Old Testament
1 Chronicles 14:1-2
Hiram Builds David a House


14:1 Now Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, along with cedar logs, stonemasons and carpenters to build a palace for him. 2 And David knew that the Lord had established him as king over Israel and that his kingdom had been highly exalted for the sake of his people Israel.

Commentary
This account illustrates that despite David’s failure (ch. 13), God established and blessed him. Three items appear: palace preparations (14:1, 2), David’s children in Jerusalem (14:3–7), and David’s victory over the Philistines (14:8–17). David recognized that the establishment of his kingdom was a blessing for the people. Following their exile in Babylon, readers would be encouraged by these remarks in their hope for a new Davidic king (ESV Reformation Study Bible).

From the book of Acts
Acts 17:16-31
Assurance for All Through Christ


17:16 While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, he was greatly distressed to see that the city was full of idols. 17 So he reasoned in the synagogue with both Jews and God-fearing Greeks, as well as in the marketplace day by day with those who happened to be there. 18 A group of Epicurean and Stoic philosophers began to debate with him. Some of them asked, “What is this babbler trying to say?” Others remarked, “He seems to be advocating foreign gods.” They said this because Paul was preaching the good news about Jesus and the resurrection. 19 Then they took him and brought him to a meeting of the Areopagus, where they said to him, “May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? 20 You are bringing some strange ideas to our ears, and we would like to know what they mean.” 21 (All the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas.)

22 Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: “People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. 23 For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: to an unknown god. So you are ignorant of the very thing you worship—and this is what I am going to proclaim to you.

24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’

29 “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. 30 In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. 31 For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.”

Commentary
Verses 16-21: Athens was then famed for polite learning, philosophy, and the fine arts; but none are more childish and superstitious, more impious, or more credulous, than some persons, deemed eminent for learning and ability. It was wholly given to idolatry. The zealous advocate for the cause of Christ will be ready to plead for it in all companies, as occasion offers. Most of these learned men took no notice of Paul; but some, whose principles were the most directly contrary to Christianity, made remarks upon him. The apostle ever dwelt upon two points, which are indeed the principal doctrines of Christianity, Christ and a future state; Christ our way, and heaven our end. They looked on this as very different from the knowledge for many ages taught and professed at Athens; they desire to know more of it, but only because it was new and strange. They led him to the place where judges sat who inquired into such matters. They asked about Paul's doctrine, not because it was good, but because it was new. Great talkers are always busy-bodies. They spend their time in nothing else, and a very uncomfortable account they have to give of their time who thus spend it. Time is precious, and we are concerned to employ it well, because eternity depends upon it, but much is wasted in unprofitable conversation.

Verses 22-31: Here we have a sermon to heathens, who worshipped false gods, and were without the true God in the world; and to them the scope of the discourse was different from what the apostle preached to the Jews. In the latter case, his business was to lead his hearers by prophecies and miracles to the knowledge of the Redeemer, and faith in him; in the former, it was to lead them, by the common works of providence, to know the Creator, and worship Him. The apostle spoke of an altar he had seen, with the inscription, "TO THE UNKNOWN GOD." This fact is stated by many writers. After multiplying their idols to the utmost, some at Athens thought there was another god of whom they had no knowledge. And are there not many now called Christians, who are zealous in their devotions, yet the great object of their worship is to them an unknown God? Observe what glorious things Paul here says of that God whom he served, and would have them to serve. The Lord had long borne with idolatry, but the times of this ignorance were now ending, and by his servants he now commanded all men every where to repent of their idolatry. Each sect of the learned men would feel themselves powerfully affected by the apostle's discourse, which tended to show the emptiness or falsity of their doctrines.



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 Friday, July 16, 2021

 

The Morning Prayer
Friday, July 16, 2021

But as for me, I will look to the Lord, I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me. Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me (Micah 7:7–8, RSV).

Dear Father in heaven, as your children we stand before you and lift our eyes to you. We are poor, needy people, often wretched and tormented. Let your eyes rest upon us. Grant us the help we need. Bless us when we gather in the name of Jesus Christ, that we may be a people who learn to serve you on all the paths we follow, even if it proves bitterly hard. Give us true faith for every moment. May we have joy and confidence that you are with your children, that you remain with them forever, until the great time of redemption when we will rejoice with all past generations and with all who are living today. Amen.

Verse of the Day for Friday, July 16, 2021

 

Verse of the Day
Friday, July 16, 2021


Colossians 2:9-10
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.
Paul warned the Colossians to guard themselves against empty, deceptive philosophies that were based on limited human reasoning. It may be impossible for us to comprehend how Jesus could be totally human and totally divine at the same time (John 1:1, 14; Phil. 2:6–8). But that is the clear teaching of Scripture, and we must accept it, even if we do not understand it. Jesus said, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). Everything that exists was created by Him and for Him. It is all under His authority, including all the nations, governments, and rulers of the earth. Of course, some people disagree with that—they do not acknowledge the lordship of Christ. But their opinion is irrelevant because one day “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth” (Phil. 2:10).

Read all of Colossians chapter 2

Listen to Colossians chapter 2


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