Monday, October 25, 2021

The Daily Bible Readings for Monday, October 25, 2021

 

The Daily Bible Readings
Monday, October 25, 2021
Psalm 28; Isaiah 59:9-19; 1 Peter 2:1-10
with commentaries from Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Bible

Introduction

In today’s lectionary readings, our psalm reading is a lament psalm. In it, David is working through a very troubling reality in his life with the Lord’s help. And that troubling reality involves wicked men. Their presence and activities may very well call for national judgment. From our passage in Isaiah, if we shut our eyes against the light of Divine truth, it is just with God to hide from our eyes the things that belong to our peace. The sins of those who profess themselves God’s people are worse than the sins of others. And the sins of a nation bring public judgments when not restrained by public justice. Our epistle reading is a word picture. In this word picture, Jesus is the living stone whom these believers have embraced and in whom they have found their hope. Jesus is also the cornerstone rejected by people but of greatest value to God. Our verse of the day illustrates what the Spirit-filled life should look like.

Today’s Verse of the Day:
Ephesians 5:19-20

Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
These same words are found in Colossians 3:16, with a notable difference of application. There the idea is of teaching: “teaching and admonishing one another;” here, simply of a natural vent for emotion, especially of thanksgiving, although probably here also “to yourselves” means “to one another,” and refers, perhaps, chiefly to public worship. In former days, Christians might have tried to overcome depression or find enjoyment by drinking till they became drunk. Now that they are Christians, they should open their lives to God and allow God’s Spirit to control them. They will find true joy in having fellowship with other Christians, singing praises together and giving thanks to God.

Today’s Lectionary Readings:
From the Psalter
Psalm 28
God my Strength and Shield

1 To you, Lord, I call;
     you are my Rock,
     do not turn a deaf ear to me.
  For if you remain silent,
     I will be like those who go down to the pit.
2 Hear my cry for mercy
     as I call to you for help,
  as I lift up my hands
     toward your Most Holy Place.

3 Do not drag me away with the wicked,
     with those who do evil,
  who speak cordially with their neighbors
     but harbor malice in their hearts.
4 Repay them for their deeds
     and for their evil work;
  repay them for what their hands have done
     and bring back on them what they deserve.

5 Because they have no regard for the deeds of the Lord
     and what his hands have done,
  he will tear them down
     and never build them up again.

6 Praise be to the Lord,
     for he has heard my cry for mercy.
7 The Lord is my strength and my shield;
     my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
  My heart leaps for joy,
     and with my song I praise him.

8 The Lord is the strength of his people,
     a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.
9 Save your people and bless your inheritance;
     be their shepherd and carry them forever.


Commentary

Verses 1-5: David is very earnest in prayer. Observe his faith in prayer; God is my rock, on whom I build my hope. Believers should not rest till they have received some token that their prayers are heard. He prays that he may not be numbered with the wicked. Save me from being entangled in the snares they have laid for me. Save me from being infected with their sins, and from doing as they do. Lord, never leave me to use such arts of deceit and treachery for my safety, as they use for my ruin. Believers dread the way of sinners; the best are sensible of the danger they are in of being drawn aside: we should all pray earnestly to God for his grace to keep us. Those who are careful not to partake with sinners in their sins, have reason to hope that they shall not receive their plagues. He speaks of the just judgments of the Lord on the workers of iniquity, ver. Psalms 28:4. This is not the language of passion or revenge. It is a prophecy that there will certainly come a day, when God will punish every man who persists in his evil deeds. Sinners shall be reckoned with, not only for the mischief they have done, but for the mischief they designed, and did what they could to effect. Disregard of the works of the Lord, is the cause of the sin of sinners, and becomes the cause of their ruin.

Verses 6-9: Has God heard our supplications? Let us then bless his name. The Lord is my strength, to support me, and carry me on through all my services and sufferings. The heart that truly believes, shall in due time greatly rejoice: we are to expect joy and peace in believing. God shall have the praise of it: thus must we express our gratitude. The saints rejoice in others' comfort as well as their own: we have the less benefit from the light of the sun, nor from the light of God's countenance, for others' sharing therein. The psalmist concludes with a short, but comprehensive prayer. God's people are his inheritance, and precious in his eyes. He prays that God would save them; that he would bless them with all good, especially the plenty of his ordinances, which are food to the soul. And direct their actions and overrule their affairs for good. Also, lift them up for ever; not only those of that age, but his people in every age to come; lift them up as high as heaven. There, and there only, will saints be lifted up for ever, never more to sink, or be depressed. Save us, Lord Jesus, from our sins; bless us, thou Son of Abraham, with the blessing of righteousness; feed us, thou good Shepherd of the sheep, and lift us up for ever from the dust, O thou, who art the Resurrection and the Life.


From the Prophetic Books
Isaiah 59:9-19
The People Confess Their Sins

9 So justice is far from us,
     and righteousness does not reach us.
  We look for light, but all is darkness;
     for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows.
10 Like the blind we grope along the wall,
      feeling our way like people without eyes.
   At midday we stumble as if it were twilight;
      among the strong, we are like the dead.
11 We all growl like bears;
      we moan mournfully like doves.
   We look for justice, but find none;
      for deliverance, but it is far away.

12 For our offenses are many in your sight,
      and our sins testify against us.
   Our offenses are ever with us,
      and we acknowledge our iniquities:
13 rebellion and treachery against the Lord,
      turning our backs on our God,
   inciting revolt and oppression,
      uttering lies our hearts have conceived.
14 So justice is driven back,
      and righteousness stands at a distance;
   truth has stumbled in the streets,
      honesty cannot enter.
15 Truth is nowhere to be found,
      and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey.

   The Lord looked and was displeased
      that there was no justice.
16 He saw that there was no one,
      he was appalled that there was no one to intervene;
   so his own arm achieved salvation for him,
      and his own righteousness sustained him.
17 He put on righteousness as his breastplate,
      and the helmet of salvation on his head;
   he put on the garments of vengeance
      and wrapped himself in zeal as in a cloak.
18 According to what they have done,
      so will he repay
   wrath to his enemies
      and retribution to his foes;
      he will repay the islands their due.
19 From the west, people will fear the name of the Lord,
      and from the rising of the sun, they will revere his glory.
   For he will come like a pent-up flood
      that the breath of the Lord drives along.


Commentary

Verses 9-15: If we shut our eyes against the light of Divine truth, it is just with God to hide from our eyes the things that belong to our peace. The sins of those who profess themselves God's people, are worse than the sins of others. And the sins of a nation bring public judgments, when not restrained by public justice. Men may murmur under calamities, but nothing will truly profit while they reject Christ and his gospel.

Verses 16-19: This passage is connected with the following chapters. It is generally thought to describe the coming of the Messiah, as the Avenger and Deliverer of his church. There was none to intercede with God to turn away his wrath; none to interpose for the support of justice and truth. Yet He engaged his own strength and righteousness for his people. God will make his justice upon the enemies of his church and people plainly appear. When the enemy threatens to bear down all without control, then the Spirit of the Lord shall stop him, put him to flight. He that has delivered, will still deliver. A far more glorious salvation is promised to be wrought out by the Messiah in the fullness of time, which all the prophets had in view. The Son of God shall come to us to be our Redeemer; the Spirit of God shall come to be our Sanctifier: thus the Comforter shall abide with the church for ever, John 14:16. The word of Christ will always continue in the mouths of the faithful; and whatever is pretended to be the mind of the Spirit, must be tried by the Scriptures. We must lament the progress of infidelity and impiety. But the cause of the Redeemer shall gain a complete victory even on earth, and the believer will be more than conqueror when the Lord receives him to his glory in heaven.


From the Epistles
1 Peter 2:1-10
Called to a Holy Priesthood

2:1 Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.

4 As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For in Scripture it says:

   “See, I lay a stone in Zion,
      a chosen and precious cornerstone,
   and the one who trusts in him
      will never be put to shame.”

7 Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,

   “The stone the builders rejected
      has become the cornerstone,”

8 and,

   “A stone that causes people to stumble
      and a rock that makes them fall.”

They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.

9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

Commentary

Evil-speaking is a sign of malice and guile in the heart; and hinders our profiting by the word of God. A new life needs suitable food. Infants desire milk, and make the best endeavors for it which they are able to do; such must be a Christian's desires after the word of God. Our Lord Jesus Christ is very merciful to us miserable sinners; and he has a fullness of grace. But even the best of God's servants, in this life, have only a taste of the consolations of God. Christ is called a Stone, to teach his servants that he is their protection and security, the foundation on which they are built. He is precious in the excellence of his nature, the dignity of his office, and the glory of his services. All true believers are a holy priesthood; sacred to God, serviceable to others, endowed with heavenly gifts and graces. But the most spiritual sacrifices of the best in prayer and praise are not acceptable, except through Jesus Christ. Christ is the chief Corner-stone, that unites the whole number of believers into one everlasting temple, and bears the weight of the whole fabric. Elected, or chosen, for a foundation that is everlasting. Precious beyond compare, by all that can give worth. To be built on Christ means, to believe in him; but in this many deceive themselves, they consider not what it is, nor the necessity of it, to partake of the salvation he has wrought. Though the frame of the world were falling to pieces, that man who is built on this foundation may hear it without fear. He shall not be confounded. The believing soul makes haste to Christ, but it never finds cause to hasten from him. All true Christians are a chosen generation; they make one family, a people distinct from the world: of another spirit, principle, and practice; which they could never be, if they were not chosen in Christ to be such, and sanctified by his Spirit. Their first state is a state of gross darkness, but they are called out of darkness into a state of joy, pleasure, and prosperity; that they should show forth the praises of the Lord by their profession of his truth, and their good conduct. How vast their obligations to Him who has made them his people, and has shown mercy to them! To be without this mercy is a woeful state, though a man have all worldly enjoyments. And there is nothing that so kindly works repentance, as right thoughts of the mercy and love of God. Let us not dare to abuse and affront the free grace of God, if we mean to be saved by it; but let all who would be found among those who obtain mercy, walk as his people.


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 Monday, October 25, 2021

 

The Morning Prayer
Monday, October 25, 2021

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
John 8:12, RSV


Lord our God, grant that our spirit may recognize your Spirit and your love, so that our lives cannot be swallowed up by passing concerns but are lifted to something higher. Help us hold fast to all the blessings you have allowed us to experience, the blessings you will certainly continue to give, even though new battles and new troubles are all around us. Send a great light to shine among the many people whose task is to lead the way so that your kingdom may come. Send light so that your name may be honored through our human deeds and you may be known as life for all. Amen.

Verse of the Day for Monday, October 25, 2021

 

Verse of the Day
Monday, October 25, 2021


Ephesians 5:19-20
Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
These same words are found in Colossians 3:16, with a notable difference of application. There the idea is of teaching: “teaching and admonishing one another;” here, simply of a natural vent for emotion, especially of thanksgiving, although probably here also “to yourselves” means “to one another,” and refers, perhaps, chiefly to public worship. In former days, Christians might have tried to overcome depression or find enjoyment by drinking till they became drunk. Now that they are Christians, they should open their lives to God and allow God’s Spirit to control them. They will find true joy in having fellowship with other Christians, singing praises together and giving thanks to God.

Read all of Ephesians Chapter 5

Listen to Ephesians Chapter 5


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

Our Daily Bread — The Testing

 

The Testing

Some time later God tested Abraham. Genesis 22:1

READ Genesis 22:1–3, 6–12

The first time I took my sons to hike a Colorado Fourteener—a mountain with an elevation of a least 14,000 feet—they were nervous. Could they make it? Were they up to the challenge? My youngest stopped on the trail for extended breaks. “Dad, I can’t go any more,” he said repeatedly. But I believed this test would be good for them, and I wanted them to trust me. A mile from the peak, my son who’d insisted he could go no further caught his second wind and beat us to the summit. He was so glad he trusted me, even amid his fears.

I marvel at the trust Isaac had in his father as they climbed their mountain. Far more, I’m undone by the trust Abraham had in God as he raised his knife over his son (Genesis 22:10). Even with his confused and wrenching heart, Abraham obeyed. Mercifully, an angel stopped him. “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” God’s messenger declared (v. 12). God never intended for Isaac to die.

As we draw parallels from this unique story to our own with caution, it’s crucial to note the opening line: “God tested Abraham” (v. 1). Through his test, Abraham learned how much he trusted God. He discovered His loving heart and profound provision.

In our confusion, darkness, and testing, we learn truths about ourselves and about God. And we may even find that our testing leads to a deeper trust in Him.

By Winn Collier

REFLECT & PRAY

How do you believe you’ve been tested by God? What was that experience like, and what did you take away from it?

God, I don’t know if what I’m experiencing is Your testing or not, but either way, I want to trust You. I give my future to You.

SCRIPTURE INSIGHT

Genesis 22:1, 15–18 make it clear that God tested Abraham to examine his heart. While God may test our faith and obedience (James 1:2–4), He never tempts us to do wrong (v. 13). The writer of Hebrews commended the patriarch’s deep faith: “Abraham reasoned that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again” (Hebrews 11:19 nlt). The apostle James said that “Abraham was shown to be right with God by his actions when he offered his son Isaac on the altar. . . . His actions made his faith complete” (James 2:21–22 nlt).

K. T. Sim