24 November 2014

Today's Readings and Stuff -- Monday, 24 November 2014

another day.  The temp is warm, the winds of 25 miles per hour combined with some rain, a bit less so.  With warnings of gusts up to 50 mph.  Not so good.  Dear Wife is next door "watching" Beloved Grand-Niece.  Niece due back in an hour at which time I have to accompany her to some flea market she frequents in order to fetch & carry some heavy stuff for her.  What fun.
Dear Wife's Disability check is supposed to hit bank in the morning, so I can buy a little bit of gasoline and some other necessities of life.  High point of the month I guess.

Just got a splash on the news that the Grand Jury verdict has been reached in Ferguson, Missouri re the Brown shooting.  No matter what the decision, I do not think this will end well.  I have friends on both sides of the controversy.  I was not there. Neither were any of them, but that does not moderate the upset on either side. 

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The Old Testament reading is chapters 32 and 33 in Ezekiel.  More warnings, judgment, and woe.

1
And it came to pass in the twelfth year, in the twelfth month, in the first day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, take up a lamentation for Pharaoh king of Egypt, and say unto him, Thou art like a young lion of the nations, and thou art as a whale in the seas: and thou camest forth with thy rivers, and troubledst the waters with thy feet, and fouledst their rivers.
3
Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will therefore spread out my net over thee with a company of many people; and they shall bring thee up in my net.
4
Then will I leave thee upon the land, I will cast thee forth upon the open field, and will cause all the fowls of the heaven to remain upon thee, and I will fill the beasts of the whole earth with thee.
5
And I will lay thy flesh upon the mountains, and fill the valleys with thy height.
6
I will also water with thy blood the land wherein thou swimmest, even to the mountains; and the rivers shall be full of thee.
7
And when I shall put thee out, I will cover the heaven, and make the stars thereof dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not give her light.
8
All the bright lights of heaven will I make dark over thee, and set darkness upon thy land, saith the Lord GOD.
9
I will also vex the hearts of many people, when I shall bring thy destruction among the nations, into the countries which thou hast not known.
10
Yea, I will make many people amazed at thee, and their kings shall be horribly afraid for thee, when I shall brandish my sword before them; and they shall tremble at every moment, every man for his own life, in the day of thy fall.
11
For thus saith the Lord GOD; The sword of the king of Babylon shall come upon thee.
12
By the swords of the mighty will I cause thy multitude to fall, the terrible of the nations, all of them: and they shall spoil the pomp of Egypt, and all the multitude thereof shall be destroyed.
13
I will destroy also all the beasts thereof from beside the great waters; neither shall the foot of man trouble them any more, nor the hoofs of beasts trouble them.
14
Then will I make their waters deep, and cause their rivers to run like oil, saith the Lord GOD.
15
When I shall make the land of Egypt desolate, and the country shall be destitute of that whereof it was full, when I shall smite all them that dwell therein, then shall they know that I am the LORD.
16
This is the lamentation wherewith they shall lament her: the daughters of the nations shall lament her: they shall lament for her, even for Egypt, and for all her multitude, saith the Lord GOD.
17
It came to pass also in the twelfth year, in the fifteenth day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
18
Son of man, wail for the multitude of Egypt, and cast them down, even her, and the daughters of the famous nations, unto the nether parts of the earth, with them that go down into the pit.
19
Whom dost thou pass in beauty? go down, and be thou laid with the uncircumcised.
20
They shall fall in the midst of them that are slain by the sword: she is delivered to the sword: draw her and all her multitudes.
21
The strong among the mighty shall speak to him out of the midst of hell with them that help him: they are gone down, they lie uncircumcised, slain by the sword.
22
Asshur is there and all her company: his graves are about him: all of them slain, fallen by the sword:
23
Whose graves are set in the sides of the pit, and her company is round about her grave: all of them slain, fallen by the sword, which caused terror in the land of the living.
24
There is Elam and all her multitude round about her grave, all of them slain, fallen by the sword, which are gone down uncircumcised into the nether parts of the earth, which caused their terror in the land of the living; yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit.
25
They have set her a bed in the midst of the slain with all her multitude: her graves are round about him: all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword: though their terror was caused in the land of the living, yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit: he is put in the midst of them that be slain.
26
There is Meshech, Tubal, and all her multitude: her graves are round about him: all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, though they caused their terror in the land of the living.
27
And they shall not lie with the mighty that are fallen of the uncircumcised, which are gone down to hell with their weapons of war: and they have laid their swords under their heads, but their iniquities shall be upon their bones, though they were the terror of the mighty in the land of the living.
28
Yea, thou shalt be broken in the midst of the uncircumcised, and shalt lie with them that are slain with the sword.
29
There is Edom, her kings, and all her princes, which with their might are laid by them that were slain by the sword: they shall lie with the uncircumcised, and with them that go down to the pit.
30
There be the princes of the north, all of them, and all the Zidonians, which are gone down with the slain; with their terror they are ashamed of their might; and they lie uncircumcised with them that be slain by the sword, and bear their shame with them that go down to the pit.
31
Pharaoh shall see them, and shall be comforted over all his multitude, even Pharaoh and all his army slain by the sword, saith the Lord GOD.
32
For I have caused my terror in the land of the living: and he shall be laid in the midst of the uncircumcised with them that are slain with the sword, even Pharaoh and all his multitude, saith the Lord GOD.


1
Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman:
3
If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people;
4
Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head.
5
He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul.
6
But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand.
7
So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
8
When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
9
Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
10
Therefore, O thou son of man, speak unto the house of Israel; Thus ye speak, saying, If our transgressions and our sins be upon us, and we pine away in them, how should we then live?
11
Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
12
Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth.
13
When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it.
14
Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right;
15
If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die.
16
None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.
17
Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them, their way is not equal.
18
When the righteous turneth from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, he shall even die thereby.
19
But if the wicked turn from his wickedness, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall live thereby.
20
Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. O ye house of Israel, I will judge you every one after his ways.
21
And it came to pass in the twelfth year of our captivity, in the tenth month, in the fifth day of the month, that one that had escaped out of Jerusalem came unto me, saying, The city is smitten.
22
Now the hand of the LORD was upon me in the evening, afore he that was escaped came; and had opened my mouth, until he came to me in the morning; and my mouth was opened, and I was no more dumb.
23
Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
24
Son of man, they that inhabit those wastes of the land of Israel speak, saying, Abraham was one, and he inherited the land: but we are many; the land is given us for inheritance.
25
Wherefore say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Ye eat with the blood, and lift up your eyes toward your idols, and shed blood: and shall ye possess the land?
26
Ye stand upon your sword, ye work abomination, and ye defile every one his neighbour's wife: and shall ye possess the land?
27
Say thou thus unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; As I live, surely they that are in the wastes shall fall by the sword, and him that is in the open field will I give to the beasts to be devoured, and they that be in the forts and in the caves shall die of the pestilence.
28
For I will lay the land most desolate, and the pomp of her strength shall cease; and the mountains of Israel shall be desolate, that none shall pass through.
29
Then shall they know that I am the LORD, when I have laid the land most desolate because of all their abominations which they have committed.
30
Also, thou son of man, the children of thy people still are talking against thee by the walls and in the doors of the houses, and speak one to another, every one to his brother, saying, Come, I pray you, and hear what is the word that cometh forth from the LORD.
31
And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them: for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetousness.
32
And, lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.
33
And when this cometh to pass, (lo, it will come,) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them


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The New Testament reading is chapter 1 in the first Epistle of Peter.


1
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,
2
Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
3
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4
To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,
5
Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
6
Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
7
That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
8
Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
9
Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
10
Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
11
Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
12
Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
13
Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
14
As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
15
But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
16
Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
17
And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:
18
Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19
But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
20
Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
21
Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.
22
Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:
23
Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
24
For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:
25
But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.


23 November 2014

Today's Readings and Stuff -- Sunday, 23 November 2014

kind of an odd day.  Most of last week, even the day's "highs" were below freezing. Today and, supposedly, tomorrow, we're getting temps in the 50's or above.  Still not what we'd become accustomed to in the Deep South, but a whole lot better than half a food of snow and ice on the ground and a whistling wind.  I don't like winter, anywhere, and never did like it up here.  But it is what it is and people have gone through worse.  I certainly have.
Wife's been pretty much on her back all day.  Not real unusual, that, but she gets discouraged which I understand.  We'll get through this as well.

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the Old Testament reading today continues in the writings of Ezekiel, chapters 29-31.  Not easy reading, and I just see too much parallel to our society here, knowing how it turned out then and I not only think it can happen again, I believe that it will.  Soon too, I think.


1
In the tenth year, in the tenth month, in the twelfth day of the month, the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, set thy face against Pharaoh king of Egypt, and prophesy against him, and against all Egypt:
3
Speak, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, Pharaoh king of Egypt, the great dragon that lieth in the midst of his rivers, which hath said, My river is mine own, and I have made it for myself.
4
But I will put hooks in thy jaws, and I will cause the fish of thy rivers to stick unto thy scales, and I will bring thee up out of the midst of thy rivers, and all the fish of thy rivers shall stick unto thy scales.
5
And I will leave thee thrown into the wilderness, thee and all the fish of thy rivers: thou shalt fall upon the open fields; thou shalt not be brought together, nor gathered: I have given thee for meat to the beasts of the field and to the fowls of the heaven.
6
And all the inhabitants of Egypt shall know that I am the LORD, because they have been a staff of reed to the house of Israel.
7
When they took hold of thee by thy hand, thou didst break, and rend all their shoulder: and when they leaned upon thee, thou brakest, and madest all their loins to be at a stand.
8
Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will bring a sword upon thee, and cut off man and beast out of thee.
9
And the land of Egypt shall be desolate and waste; and they shall know that I am the LORD: because he hath said, The river is mine, and I have made it.
10
Behold, therefore I am against thee, and against thy rivers, and I will make the land of Egypt utterly waste and desolate, from the tower of Syene even unto the border of Ethiopia.
11
No foot of man shall pass through it, nor foot of beast shall pass through it, neither shall it be inhabited forty years.
12
And I will make the land of Egypt desolate in the midst of the countries that are desolate, and her cities among the cities that are laid waste shall be desolate forty years: and I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, and will disperse them through the countries.
13
Yet thus saith the Lord GOD; At the end of forty years will I gather the Egyptians from the people whither they were scattered:
14
And I will bring again the captivity of Egypt, and will cause them to return into the land of Pathros, into the land of their habitation; and they shall be there a base kingdom.
15
It shall be the basest of the kingdoms; neither shall it exalt itself any more above the nations: for I will diminish them, that they shall no more rule over the nations.
16
And it shall be no more the confidence of the house of Israel, which bringeth their iniquity to remembrance, when they shall look after them: but they shall know that I am the Lord GOD.
17
And it came to pass in the seven and twentieth year, in the first month, in the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
18
Son of man, Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon caused his army to serve a great service against Tyrus: every head was made bald, and every shoulder was peeled: yet had he no wages, nor his army, for Tyrus, for the service that he had served against it:
19
Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will give the land of Egypt unto Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon; and he shall take her multitude, and take her spoil, and take her prey; and it shall be the wages for his army.
20
I have given him the land of Egypt for his labour wherewith he served against it, because they wrought for me, saith the Lord GOD.
21
In that day will I cause the horn of the house of Israel to bud forth, and I will give thee the opening of the mouth in the midst of them; and they shall know that I am the LORD.


1
The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, prophesy and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Howl ye, Woe worth the day!
3
For the day is near, even the day of the LORD is near, a cloudy day; it shall be the time of the heathen.
4
And the sword shall come upon Egypt, and great pain shall be in Ethiopia, when the slain shall fall in Egypt, and they shall take away her multitude, and her foundations shall be broken down.
5
Ethiopia, and Libya, and Lydia, and all the mingled people, and Chub, and the men of the land that is in league, shall fall with them by the sword.
6
Thus saith the LORD; They also that uphold Egypt shall fall; and the pride of her power shall come down: from the tower of Syene shall they fall in it by the sword, saith the Lord GOD.
7
And they shall be desolate in the midst of the countries that are desolate, and her cities shall be in the midst of the cities that are wasted.
8
And they shall know that I am the LORD, when I have set a fire in Egypt, and when all her helpers shall be destroyed.
9
In that day shall messengers go forth from me in ships to make the careless Ethiopians afraid, and great pain shall come upon them, as in the day of Egypt: for, lo, it cometh.
10
Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also make the multitude of Egypt to cease by the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon.
11
He and his people with him, the terrible of the nations, shall be brought to destroy the land: and they shall draw their swords against Egypt, and fill the land with the slain.
12
And I will make the rivers dry, and sell the land into the hand of the wicked: and I will make the land waste, and all that is therein, by the hand of strangers: I the LORD have spoken it.
13
Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also destroy the idols, and I will cause their images to cease out of Noph; and there shall be no more a prince of the land of Egypt: and I will put a fear in the land of Egypt.
14
And I will make Pathros desolate, and will set fire in Zoan, and will execute judgments in No.
15
And I will pour my fury upon Sin, the strength of Egypt; and I will cut off the multitude of No.
16
And I will set fire in Egypt: Sin shall have great pain, and No shall be rent asunder, and Noph shall have distresses daily.
17
The young men of Aven and of Pibeseth shall fall by the sword: and these cities shall go into captivity.
18
At Tehaphnehes also the day shall be darkened, when I shall break there the yokes of Egypt: and the pomp of her strength shall cease in her: as for her, a cloud shall cover her, and her daughters shall go into captivity.
19
Thus will I execute judgments in Egypt: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
20
And it came to pass in the eleventh year, in the first month, in the seventh day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
21
Son of man, I have broken the arm of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and, lo, it shall not be bound up to be healed, to put a roller to bind it, to make it strong to hold the sword.
22
Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against Pharaoh king of Egypt, and will break his arms, the strong, and that which was broken; and I will cause the sword to fall out of his hand.
23
And I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, and will disperse them through the countries.
24
And I will strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon, and put my sword in his hand: but I will break Pharaoh's arms, and he shall groan before him with the groanings of a deadly wounded man.
25
But I will strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon, and the arms of Pharaoh shall fall down; and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall put my sword into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall stretch it out upon the land of Egypt.
26
And I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, and disperse them among the countries; and they shall know that I am the LORD.


1
And it came to pass in the eleventh year, in the third month, in the first day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, speak unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, and to his multitude; Whom art thou like in thy greatness?
3
Behold, the Assyrian was a cedar in Lebanon with fair branches, and with a shadowing shroud, and of an high stature; and his top was among the thick boughs.
4
The waters made him great, the deep set him up on high with her rivers running round about his plants, and sent her little rivers unto all the trees of the field.
5
Therefore his height was exalted above all the trees of the field, and his boughs were multiplied, and his branches became long because of the multitude of waters, when he shot forth.
6
All the fowls of heaven made their nests in his boughs, and under his branches did all the beasts of the field bring forth their young, and under his shadow dwelt all great nations.
7
Thus was he fair in his greatness, in the length of his branches: for his root was by great waters.
8
The cedars in the garden of God could not hide him: the fir trees were not like his boughs, and the chestnut trees were not like his branches; nor any tree in the garden of God was like unto him in his beauty.
9
I have made him fair by the multitude of his branches: so that all the trees of Eden, that were in the garden of God, envied him.
10
Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou hast lifted up thyself in height, and he hath shot up his top among the thick boughs, and his heart is lifted up in his height;
11
I have therefore delivered him into the hand of the mighty one of the heathen; he shall surely deal with him: I have driven him out for his wickedness.
12
And strangers, the terrible of the nations, have cut him off, and have left him: upon the mountains and in all the valleys his branches are fallen, and his boughs are broken by all the rivers of the land; and all the people of the earth are gone down from his shadow, and have left him.
13
Upon his ruin shall all the fowls of the heaven remain, and all the beasts of the field shall be upon his branches:
14
To the end that none of all the trees by the waters exalt themselves for their height, neither shoot up their top among the thick boughs, neither their trees stand up in their height, all that drink water: for they are all delivered unto death, to the nether parts of the earth, in the midst of the children of men, with them that go down to the pit.
15
Thus saith the Lord GOD; In the day when he went down to the grave I caused a mourning: I covered the deep for him, and I restrained the floods thereof, and the great waters were stayed: and I caused Lebanon to mourn for him, and all the trees of the field fainted for him.
16
I made the nations to shake at the sound of his fall, when I cast him down to hell with them that descend into the pit: and all the trees of Eden, the choice and best of Lebanon, all that drink water, shall be comforted in the nether parts of the earth.
17
They also went down into hell with him unto them that be slain with the sword; and they that were his arm, that dwelt under his shadow in the midst of the heathen.
18
To whom art thou thus like in glory and in greatness among the trees of Eden? yet shalt thou be brought down with the trees of Eden unto the nether parts of the earth: thou shalt lie in the midst of the uncircumcised with them that be slain by the sword. This is Pharaoh and all his multitude, saith the Lord GOD.





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The New Testament passage is the 5th and final chapter in the epistle of James.  Short and to the point.

1
Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you.
2
Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten.
3
Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.
4
Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth.
5
Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter.
6
Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you.
7
Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.
8
Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
9
Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.
10
Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.
11
Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
12
But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation.
13
Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms.
14
Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
15
And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
16
Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
17
Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
18
And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
19
Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;
20
Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.

22 November 2014

Today's Readings and Stuff -- Saturday, 22 November 2014

weekend is here.  Dear Wife is flat on back, with the TV turned to some truly awful crime dramas, the sort of thing I absolutely loathe.  Even the voice of the narrators -- can anyone stand Paula Zahn?, really I mean??  I'm really not a big sports nut, even football though it's more watchable than basketball, soccer, baseball, or hockey.  Just not into it.  Rank heresy, I know
Having a bit of a break from the grossly awful weather of the last week, we're up over freezing for the first time in a while, and even tonight's low is supposed to be above the freezing point, so we're getting some real snow melt.  Wish it would stay like this until, say, March 30th or so, but that's not real likely at this latitude.  Oh, well.
Got word that older daughter is in some emotional disarray.  She's a teacher, been saddled with classes largely comprised of ILLEGAL ALIENS, some of whom claim to be 7th graders but came equipped with gang tats and grey hair.  And she's been receiving threats of violence, including death threats, for failing to display proper levels of deference to their gang status.
It would be unchristian of me to wish ill upon the persons in our government whose criminal nonfeasance in office approaches the definitions of Treason, but I do confess to temptation in that direction.  Reminds me all too well of some old Russian Jewish jokes about the Tsar.  And our current "leaders" seem to have real pretensions to the status of Tsar (or Czar, the transliteration from Cyrillic is not always exact).  How do I tell my liberal daughter that her own government hates this nation, its people and culture, and that she is on the sharp edge of that?  Not easy, and she, like others, has to come to that realization on her own.

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The Old Testament reading today continues in the writings of Ezekiel, chapters 27 and 28.  His assignment, should you call it that, must have been a most difficult one.  Prophecies of doom and lamentation and woe, are not easily uttered.  Definitely will not make you friends, especially among the powerful and their hangers-on.  But he did it, and some of those prophecies are yet to be fulfilled.  I believe we will see some of that in our own time.  We won't like it, but it's coming.


1
The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
2
Now, thou son of man, take up a lamentation for Tyrus;
3
And say unto Tyrus, O thou that art situate at the entry of the sea, which art a merchant of the people for many isles, Thus saith the Lord GOD; O Tyrus, thou hast said, I am of perfect beauty.
4
Thy borders are in the midst of the seas, thy builders have perfected thy beauty.
5
They have made all thy ship boards of fir trees of Senir: they have taken cedars from Lebanon to make masts for thee.
6
Of the oaks of Bashan have they made thine oars; the company of the Ashurites have made thy benches of ivory, brought out of the isles of Chittim.
7
Fine linen with broidered work from Egypt was that which thou spreadest forth to be thy sail; blue and purple from the isles of Elishah was that which covered thee.
8
The inhabitants of Zidon and Arvad were thy mariners: thy wise men, O Tyrus, that were in thee, were thy pilots.
9
The ancients of Gebal and the wise men thereof were in thee thy calkers: all the ships of the sea with their mariners were in thee to occupy thy merchandise.
10
They of Persia and of Lud and of Phut were in thine army, thy men of war: they hanged the shield and helmet in thee; they set forth thy comeliness.
11
The men of Arvad with thine army were upon thy walls round about, and the Gammadims were in thy towers: they hanged their shields upon thy walls round about; they have made thy beauty perfect.
12
Tarshish was thy merchant by reason of the multitude of all kind of riches; with silver, iron, tin, and lead, they traded in thy fairs.
13
Javan, Tubal, and Meshech, they were thy merchants: they traded the persons of men and vessels of brass in thy market.
14
They of the house of Togarmah traded in thy fairs with horses and horsemen and mules.
15
The men of Dedan were thy merchants; many isles were the merchandise of thine hand: they brought thee for a present horns of ivory and ebony.
16
Syria was thy merchant by reason of the multitude of the wares of thy making: they occupied in thy fairs with emeralds, purple, and broidered work, and fine linen, and coral, and agate.
17
Judah, and the land of Israel, they were thy merchants: they traded in thy market wheat of Minnith, and Pannag, and honey, and oil, and balm.
18
Damascus was thy merchant in the multitude of the wares of thy making, for the multitude of all riches; in the wine of Helbon, and white wool.
19
Dan also and Javan going to and fro occupied in thy fairs: bright iron, cassia, and calamus, were in thy market.
20
Dedan was thy merchant in precious clothes for chariots.
21
Arabia, and all the princes of Kedar, they occupied with thee in lambs, and rams, and goats: in these were they thy merchants.
22
The merchants of Sheba and Raamah, they were thy merchants: they occupied in thy fairs with chief of all spices, and with all precious stones, and gold.
23
Haran, and Canneh, and Eden, the merchants of Sheba, Asshur, and Chilmad, were thy merchants.
24
These were thy merchants in all sorts of things, in blue clothes, and broidered work, and in chests of rich apparel, bound with cords, and made of cedar, among thy merchandise.
25
The ships of Tarshish did sing of thee in thy market: and thou wast replenished, and made very glorious in the midst of the seas.
26
Thy rowers have brought thee into great waters: the east wind hath broken thee in the midst of the seas.
27
Thy riches, and thy fairs, thy merchandise, thy mariners, and thy pilots, thy calkers, and the occupiers of thy merchandise, and all thy men of war, that are in thee, and in all thy company which is in the midst of thee, shall fall into the midst of the seas in the day of thy ruin.
28
The suburbs shall shake at the sound of the cry of thy pilots.
29
And all that handle the oar, the mariners, and all the pilots of the sea, shall come down from their ships, they shall stand upon the land;
30
And shall cause their voice to be heard against thee, and shall cry bitterly, and shall cast up dust upon their heads, they shall wallow themselves in the ashes:
31
And they shall make themselves utterly bald for thee, and gird them with sackcloth, and they shall weep for thee with bitterness of heart and bitter wailing.
32
And in their wailing they shall take up a lamentation for thee, and lament over thee, saying, What city is like Tyrus, like the destroyed in the midst of the sea?
33
When thy wares went forth out of the seas, thou filledst many people; thou didst enrich the kings of the earth with the multitude of thy riches and of thy merchandise.
34
In the time when thou shalt be broken by the seas in the depths of the waters thy merchandise and all thy company in the midst of thee shall fall.
35
All the inhabitants of the isles shall be astonished at thee, and their kings shall be sore afraid, they shall be troubled in their countenance.
36
The merchants among the people shall hiss at thee; thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt be any more.


1
The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
2
Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God:
3
Behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee:
4
With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures:
5
By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches:
6
Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God;
7
Behold, therefore I will bring strangers upon thee, the terrible of the nations: and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall defile thy brightness.
8
They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas.
9
Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou shalt be a man, and no God, in the hand of him that slayeth thee.
10
Thou shalt die the deaths of the uncircumcised by the hand of strangers: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.
11
Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
12
Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.
13
Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created.
14
Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
15
Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.
16
By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
17
Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.
18
Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.
19
All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more.
20
Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
21
Son of man, set thy face against Zidon, and prophesy against it,
22
And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Zidon; and I will be glorified in the midst of thee: and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall have executed judgments in her, and shall be sanctified in her.
23
For I will send into her pestilence, and blood into her streets; and the wounded shall be judged in the midst of her by the sword upon her on every side; and they shall know that I am the LORD.
24
And there shall be no more a pricking brier unto the house of Israel, nor any grieving thorn of all that are round about them, that despised them; and they shall know that I am the Lord GOD.
25
Thus saith the Lord GOD; When I shall have gathered the house of Israel from the people among whom they are scattered, and shall be sanctified in them in the sight of the heathen, then shall they dwell in their land that I have given to my servant Jacob.
26
And they shall dwell safely therein, and shall build houses, and plant vineyards; yea, they shall dwell with confidence, when I have executed judgments upon all those that despise them round about them; and they shall know that I am the LORD their God.



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The New Testament reading is chapter 4 in the letter of James.  This has some personal meaning for me.

1
From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?
2
Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
3
Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
4
Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
5
Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?
6
But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
7
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
8
Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
9
Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.
10
Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
11
Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.
12
There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?
13
Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:
14
Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
15
For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
16
But now ye rejoice in your boastings: all such rejoicing is evil.
17
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.