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I Samuel 25, 26, 27

Death of Samuel

25Now Samuel died; and all Israel assembled and mourned for him. They buried him at his home in Ramah.

Then David got up and went down to the wilderness of Paran.

David and the Wife of Nabal

2 There was a man in Maon, whose property was in Carmel. The man was very rich; he had three thousand sheep and a thousand goats. He was shearing his sheep in Carmel. 3Now the name of the man was Nabal, and the name of his wife Abigail. The woman was clever and beautiful, but the man was surly and mean; he was a Calebite. 4David heard in the wilderness that Nabal was shearing his sheep. 5So David sent ten young men; and David said to the young men, ‘Go up to Carmel, and go to Nabal, and greet him in my name. 6Thus you shall salute him: “Peace be to you, and peace be to your house, and peace be to all that you have. 7I hear that you have shearers; now your shepherds have been with us, and we did them no harm, and they missed nothing, all the time they were in Carmel. 8Ask your young men, and they will tell you. Therefore let my young men find favour in your sight; for we have come on a feast day. Please give whatever you have at hand to your servants and to your son David.”

9 When David’s young men came, they said all this to Nabal in the name of David; and then they waited. 10But Nabal answered David’s servants, ‘Who is David? Who is the son of Jesse? There are many servants today who are breaking away from their masters. 11Shall I take my bread and my water and the meat that I have butchered for my shearers, and give it to men who come from I do not know where?’ 12So David’s young men turned away, and came back and told him all this. 13David said to his men, ‘Every man strap on his sword!’ And every one of them strapped on his sword; David also strapped on his sword; and about four hundred men went up after David, while two hundred remained with the baggage.

14 But one of the young men told Abigail, Nabal’s wife, ‘David sent messengers out of the wilderness to salute our master; and he shouted insults at them. 15Yet the men were very good to us, and we suffered no harm, and we never missed anything when we were in the fields, as long as we were with them; 16they were a wall to us both by night and by day, all the while we were with them keeping the sheep. 17Now therefore know this and consider what you should do; for evil has been decided against our master and against all his house; he is so ill-natured that no one can speak to him.’

18 Then Abigail hurried and took two hundred loaves, two skins of wine, five sheep ready dressed, five measures of parched grain, one hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of figs. She loaded them on donkeys 19and said to her young men, ‘Go on ahead of me; I am coming after you.’ But she did not tell her husband Nabal. 20As she rode on the donkey and came down under cover of the mountain, David and his men came down towards her; and she met them. 21Now David had said, ‘Surely it was in vain that I protected all that this fellow has in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that belonged to him; but he has returned me evil for good. 22God do so to David* and more also, if by morning I leave as much as one male of all who belong to him.’

23 When Abigail saw David, she hurried and alighted from the donkey, and fell before David on her face, bowing to the ground. 24She fell at his feet and said, ‘Upon me alone, my lord, be the guilt; please let your servant speak in your ears, and hear the words of your servant. 25My lord, do not take seriously this ill-natured fellow Nabal; for as his name is, so is he; Nabal* is his name, and folly is with him; but I, your servant, did not see the young men of my lord, whom you sent.

26 ‘Now then, my lord, as the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, since the Lord has restrained you from blood-guilt and from taking vengeance with your own hand, now let your enemies and those who seek to do evil to my lord be like Nabal. 27And now let this present that your servant has brought to my lord be given to the young men who follow my lord. 28Please forgive the trespass of your servant; for the Lord will certainly make my lord a sure house, because my lord is fighting the battles of the Lord; and evil shall not be found in you as long as you live. 29If anyone should rise up to pursue you and to seek your life, the life of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of the living under the care of the Lord your God; but the lives of your enemies he shall sling out as from the hollow of a sling. 30When the Lord has done to my lord according to all the good that he has spoken concerning you, and has appointed you prince over Israel, 31my lord shall have no cause of grief, or pangs of conscience, for having shed blood without cause or for having saved himself. And when the Lord has dealt well with my lord, then remember your servant.’

32 David said to Abigail, ‘Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who sent you to meet me today! 33Blessed be your good sense, and blessed be you, who have kept me today from blood-guilt and from avenging myself by my own hand! 34For as surely as the Lord the God of Israel lives, who has restrained me from hurting you, unless you had hurried and come to meet me, truly by morning there would not have been left to Nabal as much as one male.’ 35Then David received from her hand what she had brought him; he said to her, ‘Go up to your house in peace; see, I have heeded your voice, and I have granted your petition.’

36 Abigail came to Nabal; he was holding a feast in his house, like the feast of a king. Nabal’s heart was merry within him, for he was very drunk; so she told him nothing at all until the morning light. 37In the morning, when the wine had gone out of Nabal, his wife told him these things, and his heart died within him; he became like a stone. 38About ten days later the Lord struck Nabal, and he died.

39 When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, ‘Blessed be the Lord who has judged the case of Nabal’s insult to me, and has kept back his servant from evil; the Lord has returned the evildoing of Nabal upon his own head.’ Then David sent and wooed Abigail, to make her his wife. 40When David’s servants came to Abigail at Carmel, they said to her, ‘David has sent us to you to take you to him as his wife.’ 41She rose and bowed down, with her face to the ground, and said, ‘Your servant is a slave to wash the feet of the servants of my lord.’ 42Abigail got up hurriedly and rode away on a donkey; her five maids attended her. She went after the messengers of David and became his wife.

43 David also married Ahinoam of Jezreel; both of them became his wives. 44Saul had given his daughter Michal, David’s wife, to Palti son of Laish, who was from Gallim.

David Spares Saul’s Life a Second Time

26Then the Ziphites came to Saul at Gibeah, saying, ‘David is in hiding on the hill of Hachilah, which is opposite Jeshimon.’* 2So Saul rose and went down to the Wilderness of Ziph, with three thousand chosen men of Israel, to seek David in the Wilderness of Ziph. 3Saul encamped on the hill of Hachilah, which is opposite Jeshimon* beside the road. But David remained in the wilderness. When he learned that Saul had come after him into the wilderness, 4David sent out spies, and learned that Saul had indeed arrived. 5Then David set out and came to the place where Saul had encamped; and David saw the place where Saul lay, with Abner son of Ner, the commander of his army. Saul was lying within the encampment, while the army was encamped around him.

6 Then David said to Ahimelech the Hittite, and to Joab’s brother Abishai son of Zeruiah, ‘Who will go down with me into the camp to Saul?’ Abishai said, ‘I will go down with you.’ 7So David and Abishai went to the army by night; there Saul lay sleeping within the encampment, with his spear stuck in the ground at his head; and Abner and the army lay around him. 8Abishai said to David, ‘God has given your enemy into your hand today; now therefore let me pin him to the ground with one stroke of the spear; I will not strike him twice.’ 9But David said to Abishai, ‘Do not destroy him; for who can raise his hand against the Lord’s anointed, and be guiltless?’ 10David said, ‘As the Lord lives, the Lord will strike him down; or his day will come to die; or he will go down into battle and perish. 11The Lord forbid that I should raise my hand against the Lord’s anointed; but now take the spear that is at his head, and the water-jar, and let us go.’ 12So David took the spear that was at Saul’s head and the water-jar, and they went away. No one saw it, or knew it, nor did anyone awake; for they were all asleep, because a deep sleep from the Lord had fallen upon them.

13 Then David went over to the other side, and stood on top of a hill far away, with a great distance between them. 14David called to the army and to Abner son of Ner, saying, ‘Abner! Will you not answer?’ Then Abner replied, ‘Who are you that calls to the king?’ 15David said to Abner, ‘Are you not a man? Who is like you in Israel? Why then have you not kept watch over your lord the king? For one of the people came in to destroy your lord the king. 16This thing that you have done is not good. As the Lord lives, you deserve to die, because you have not kept watch over your lord, the Lord’s anointed. See now, where is the king’s spear, or the water-jar that was at his head?’

17 Saul recognized David’s voice, and said, ‘Is that your voice, my son David?’ David said, ‘It is my voice, my lord, O king.’ 18And he added, ‘Why does my lord pursue his servant? For what have I done? What guilt is on my hands? 19Now therefore let my lord the king hear the words of his servant. If it is the Lord who has stirred you up against me, may he accept an offering; but if it is mortals, may they be cursed before the Lord, for they have driven me out today from my share in the heritage of the Lord, saying, “Go, serve other gods.” 20Now, therefore, do not let my blood fall to the ground, away from the presence of the Lord; for the king of Israel has come out to seek a single flea, like one who hunts a partridge in the mountains.’

21 Then Saul said, ‘I have done wrong; come back, my son David, for I will never harm you again, because my life was precious in your sight today; I have been a fool, and have made a great mistake.’ 22David replied, ‘Here is the spear, O king! Let one of the young men come over and get it. 23The Lord rewards everyone for his righteousness and his faithfulness; for the Lord gave you into my hand today, but I would not raise my hand against the Lord’s anointed. 24As your life was precious today in my sight, so may my life be precious in the sight of the Lord, and may he rescue me from all tribulation.’ 25Then Saul said to David, ‘Blessed be you, my son David! You will do many things and will succeed in them.’ So David went on his way, and Saul returned to his place.

David Serves King Achish of Gath

27David said in his heart, ‘I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul; there is nothing better for me than to escape to the land of the Philistines; then Saul will despair of seeking me any longer within the borders of Israel, and I shall escape out of his hand.’ 2So David set out and went over, he and the six hundred men who were with him, to King Achish son of Maoch of Gath. 3David stayed with Achish at Gath, he and his troops, every man with his household, and David with his two wives, Ahinoam of Jezreel, and Abigail of Carmel, Nabal’s widow. 4When Saul was told that David had fled to Gath, he no longer sought for him.

5 Then David said to Achish, ‘If I have found favour in your sight, let a place be given me in one of the country towns, so that I may live there; for why should your servant live in the royal city with you?’ 6So that day Achish gave him Ziklag; therefore Ziklag has belonged to the kings of Judah to this day. 7The length of time that David lived in the country of the Philistines was one year and four months.

8 Now David and his men went up and made raids on the Geshurites, the Girzites, and the Amalekites; for these were the landed settlements from Telam* on the way to Shur and on to the land of Egypt. 9David struck the land, leaving neither man nor woman alive, but took away the sheep, the oxen, the donkeys, the camels, and the clothing, and came back to Achish. 10When Achish asked, ‘Against whom* have you made a raid today?’ David would say, ‘Against the Negeb of Judah’, or ‘Against the Negeb of the Jerahmeelites’, or ‘Against the Negeb of the Kenites.’ 11David left neither man nor woman alive to be brought back to Gath, thinking, ‘They might tell about us, and say, “David has done so and so.” ’ Such was his practice all the time he lived in the country of the Philistines. 12Achish trusted David, thinking, ‘He has made himself utterly abhorrent to his people Israel; therefore he shall always be my servant.’

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Psalm 88

Prayer for Help in Despondency

A Song. A Psalm of the Korahites. To the leader: according to Mahalath Leannoth. A Maskil of Heman the Ezrahite.
1Lord, God of my salvation,
   when, at night, I cry out in your presence,
2 let my prayer come before you;
   incline your ear to my cry.


3 For my soul is full of troubles,
   and my life draws near to Sheol.
4 I am counted among those who go down to the Pit;
   I am like those who have no help,
5 like those forsaken among the dead,
   like the slain that lie in the grave,
like those whom you remember no more,
   for they are cut off from your hand.
6 You have put me in the depths of the Pit,
   in the regions dark and deep.
7 Your wrath lies heavy upon me,
   and you overwhelm me with all your waves.
          Selah


8 You have caused my companions to shun me;
   you have made me a thing of horror to them.
I am shut in so that I cannot escape;
9   my eye grows dim through sorrow.
Every day I call on you, O Lord;
   I spread out my hands to you.
10 Do you work wonders for the dead?
   Do the shades rise up to praise you?
          Selah
11 Is your steadfast love declared in the grave,
   or your faithfulness in Abaddon?
12 Are your wonders known in the darkness,
   or your saving help in the land of forgetfulness?


13 But I, O Lord, cry out to you;
   in the morning my prayer comes before you.
14Lord, why do you cast me off?
   Why do you hide your face from me?
15 Wretched and close to death from my youth up,
   I suffer your terrors; I am desperate.*
16 Your wrath has swept over me;
   your dread assaults destroy me.
17 They surround me like a flood all day long;
   from all sides they close in on me.
18 You have caused friend and neighbour to shun me;
   my companions are in darkness.

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Acts 2

The Coming of the Holy Spirit

2When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

5 Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. 7Amazed and astonished, they asked, ‘Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.’ 12All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, ‘What does this mean?’ 13But others sneered and said, ‘They are filled with new wine.’

Peter Addresses the Crowd

14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them: ‘Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 15Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. 16No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:
17 “In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
   and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
   and your old men shall dream dreams.
18 Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
   in those days I will pour out my Spirit;
     and they shall prophesy.
19 And I will show portents in the heaven above
   and signs on the earth below,
     blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
20 The sun shall be turned to darkness
   and the moon to blood,
     before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day.
21 Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

22 ‘You that are Israelites,* listen to what I have to say: Jesus of Nazareth,* a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know— 23this man, handed over to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law. 24But God raised him up, having freed him from death,* because it was impossible for him to be held in its power. 25For David says concerning him,
“I saw the Lord always before me,
   for he is at my right hand so that I will not be shaken;
26 therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced;
   moreover, my flesh will live in hope.
27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades,
   or let your Holy One experience corruption.
28 You have made known to me the ways of life;
   you will make me full of gladness with your presence.”

29 ‘Fellow Israelites,* I may say to you confidently of our ancestor David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30Since he was a prophet, he knew that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would put one of his descendants on his throne. 31Foreseeing this, David* spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah,* saying,
“He was not abandoned to Hades,
   nor did his flesh experience corruption.”
32This Jesus God raised up, and of that all of us are witnesses. 33Being therefore exalted at* the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you both see and hear. 34For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,
“The Lord said to my Lord,
‘Sit at my right hand,
35   until I make your enemies your footstool.’
36Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah,* this Jesus whom you crucified.’

The First Converts

37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, ‘Brothers,* what should we do?’ 38Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him.’ 40And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, ‘Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.’ 41So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added. 42They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

Life among the Believers

43 Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. 44All who believed were together and had all things in common; 45they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds* to all, as any had need. 46Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home* and ate their food with glad and generous* hearts, 47praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.

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10 February 2011

From the oremus Bible Browser http://bible.oremus.org v2.2.7 10 February 2011.