Thursday: Preparation for the Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

This week's blog post is here. It has a review of The Message Bible translation, the fate of the rich in God's kingdom, background on Lazarus, information on Job's friends, and more.

Complementary Hebrew Scripture from the Torah: Deuteronomy 5:1-21¹

Moses convened all Israel, and said to them:

Hear, O Israel, the statutes and ordinances that I am addressing to you today; you shall learn them and observe them diligently. The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. Not with our ancestors did the Lord make this covenant, but with us, who are all of us here alive today. The Lord spoke with you face to face at the mountain, out of the fire. (At that time I was standing between the Lord and you to declare to you the words of the Lord; for you were afraid because of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said:

I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me.

You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.

You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.

Observe the sabbath day and keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, or your son or your daughter, or your male or female slave, or your ox or your donkey, or any of your livestock, or the resident alien in your towns, so that your male and female slave may rest as well as you. Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm; therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the sabbath day.

Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God commanded you, so that your days may be long and that it may go well with you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.[16]*

You shall not murder.[17]*

Neither shall you commit adultery.[18]*

Neither shall you steal.[19]*

Neither shall you bear false witness against your neighbor.[20]*

Neither shall you covet your neighbor's wife.[21]*

Neither shall you desire your neighbor's house, or field, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.[22]*

¹The Ten Commandments are also found in Exodus 20:1-17
*Verse numbers are in [brackets] at the end of the verse.
Jesus speaks of verses 16 to 20 as the law in three versions of a parable: The parable of the man with many possessions in
Matthew 19:16-30 and Mark 10:17-31; in Luke 18:18-30 it is a rich ruler.

Jesus refers to the commandment to honor your father and mother (verse 16) in his argument with the Pharisees over honoring traditions. The arguments are recounted in
Matthew 15:1-10 and Mark 7:1-13. Paul also refers to this commandment in his exhortation to households in Ephesians 5:22-6:9

Jesus, in a speech about reconcilation, refers to anger and murder (verse 17) together in
Matthew 5:27-30.

James, writing about prejudice and the law of love, refers to murder (verse 17) and adultery (verse 18) at
James 2:1-13.

Paul, urging the Romans to love neighbors, refers to verses 17, 18, 19, 21 and 22 at
Romans 13:8-10

Paul, again in Romans, refers to verses 21 and 22 in part of his explaintion about believers' relationship to the law (
Romans 7:7-12)

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture from the Writings: Job 17:1-16

My spirit is broken,
 my days are extinct,
the grave is ready for me.
Surely there are mockers around me,
 and my eye dwells on their provocation.

“Lay down a pledge for me with yourself;
 who is there that will give surety for me?
Since you have closed their minds to understanding,
 therefore you will not let them triumph.
Those who denounce friends for reward—
 the eyes of their children will fail.

“He has made me a byword of the peoples,
 and I am one before whom people spit.
My eye has grown dim from grief,
 and all my members are like a shadow.
The upright are appalled at this,
 and the innocent stir themselves up against the godless.
Yet the righteous hold to their way,
 and they that have clean hands grow stronger and stronger.
But you, come back now, all of you,
 and I shall not find a sensible person among you.
My days are past, my plans are broken off,
 the desires of my heart.
They make night into day;
 ‘The light,’ they say, ‘is near to the darkness.’
If I look for Sheol as my house,
 if I spread my couch in darkness,
if I say to the Pit, ‘You are my father,
 ’ and to the worm, ‘My mother,’ or ‘My sister,’
where then is my hope?
Who will see my hope?
Will it go down to the bars of Sheol?
Shall we descend together into the dust?”

Complementary Psalm 90:12-17

So teach us to count our days
 that we may gain a wise heart.

Turn, O Lord! How long?
 Have compassion on your servants!
Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love,
 so that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
Make us glad as many days as you have afflicted us,
 and as many years as we have seen evil.
Let your work be manifest to your servants,
 and your glorious power to their children.
Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,
 and prosper for us the work of our hands—
 O prosper the work of our hands!

Semi-continuous Psalm 22:1-15

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?¹
Why are you so far from helping me,
 from the words of my groaning?
O my God, I cry by day,
 but you do not answer;
 and by night, but find no rest.
Yet you are holy,
 enthroned on the praises of Israel.
In you our ancestors trusted;
 they trusted, and you delivered them.
To you they cried, and were saved;
 in you they trusted, and were not put to shame.

But I am a worm, and not human;
 scorned by others,
 and despised by the people.
All who see me mock at me;
 they make mouths at me,
they shake their heads;
“Commit your cause to the Lord;
let him deliver—
 let him rescue the one in whom he delights!”²

Yet it was you who took me from the womb;
 you kept me safe on my mother's breast.
On you I was cast from my birth,
 and since my mother bore me you have been my God.
Do not be far from me,
 for trouble is near
 and there is no one to help.

Many bulls encircle me,
 strong bulls of Bashan surround me;
they open wide their mouths at me,
 like a ravening and roaring lion.

I am poured out like water,
 and all my bones are out of joint;
my heart is like wax;
 it is melted within my breast;
my mouth is dried up like a potsherd,
 and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
 you lay me in the dust of death.

¹Jesus, on the cross as he is dying, says these words, as recorded in Matthew 27:45-56 and Mark 15:33-41
²This passage, starting with “All those who see me mock me” is reflected in accounts of the crucifixion in
Luke 23:35-36 and Matthew 27:39-44.

New Testament Epistle Lesson: Hebrews 3:7-19

Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says,

The Smiting of the Rock

“Today, if you hear his voice,
 Do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah,
 as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
 when your ancestors tested me,
and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.
For forty years I loathed that generation
 and said, ‘They are a people whose hearts go astray,
 and they do not regard my ways.’
Therefore in my anger I swore,
 ‘They shall not enter my rest.’”¹

Take care, brothers and sisters, that none of you may have an evil, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” so that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partners of Christ, if only we hold our first confidence firm to the end. As it is said,

“Today, if you hear his voice,
 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”²

Now who were they who heard and yet were rebellious? Was it not all those who left Egypt under the leadership of Moses? But with whom was he angry forty years? Was it not those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, if not to those who were disobedient? So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.

¹Psalm 95:7b-11   ²This is a paraphrase of Psalm 95:7-8

Year B Ordinary 28 Thursday

Selections from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings copyright © 1995 by the Consultation on Common Texts.

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from Holy Bible New Revised Standard Version with the Apocryphal / Deuterocanonical Books (NRSV) copyright © 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All right reserved.

Footnotes in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) that show where the passage is used in the Christian Scriptures (New Testament) from the Complete Jewish Bible (Updated) (CJB) by David H. Stern, Copyright © 1998 and 2006 by David H. Stern, used by permission of Messianic Jewish Publishers, www.messianicjewish.net. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the CJB, the passage ends with (CJB) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Footnotes in the Christian Scriptures (New Testament) that show where a passage from the Hebrew Scripture (Old Testament) is used are from The The Holy Bible: New International Version ® (NIV®), copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. When text is taken from the NIV, the passage ends with (NIV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

Parallel passages are as indicated in the Modern English Version (MEV) , copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Used by permission. All rights reserved. When text is taken from the MEV, the passage ends with (MEV) and the foregoing copyright notice applies.

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Image credit: The Smiting of the Rock by Harold Copping (1836-1932) from The Gospel in the Old Testament via BiblepictureStories. This is a public domain image.

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