6Alas for those who are at ease in Zion,
and for those who feel secure on Mount Samaria,
the notables of the first of the nations,
to whom the house of Israel resorts!
2 Cross over to Calneh, and see;
from there go to Hamath the great;
then go down to Gath of the Philistines.
Are you better* than these kingdoms?
Or is your* territory greater than their* territory,
3 O you that put far away the evil day,
and bring near a reign of violence?
4 Alas for those who lie on beds of ivory,
and lounge on their couches,
and eat lambs from the flock,
and calves from the stall;
5 who sing idle songs to the sound of the harp,
and like David improvise on instruments of music;
6 who drink wine from bowls,
and anoint themselves with the finest oils,
but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph!
7 Therefore they shall now be the first to go into exile,
and the revelry of the loungers shall pass away.
8 The Lord God has sworn by himself
(says the Lord, the God of hosts):
I abhor the pride of Jacob
and hate his strongholds;
and I will deliver up the city and all that is in it.
9 If ten people remain in one house, they shall die.
10And if a relative, one who burns the dead,* shall take up the body to bring it out of the house, and shall say to someone in the innermost parts of the house, Is anyone else with you? the answer will come, No. Then the relative* shall say, Hush! We must not mention the name of the Lord.
11 See, the Lord commands,
and the great house shall be shattered to bits,
and the little house to pieces.
12 Do horses run on rocks?
Does one plough the sea with oxen?*
But you have turned justice into poison
and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood
13 you who rejoice in Lo-debar,*
who say, Have we not by our own strength
taken Karnaim* for ourselves?
14 Indeed, I am raising up against you a nation,
O house of Israel, says the Lord, the God of hosts,
and they shall oppress you from Lebo-hamath
to the Wadi Arabah.
1 Praise the Lord!
Happy are those who fear the Lord,
who greatly delight in his commandments.
2 Their descendants will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in their houses,
and their righteousness endures for ever.
4 They rise in the darkness as a light for the upright;
they are gracious, merciful, and righteous.
5 It is well with those who deal generously and lend,
who conduct their affairs with justice.
6 For the righteous will never be moved;
they will be remembered for ever.
7 They are not afraid of evil tidings;
their hearts are firm, secure in the Lord.
8 Their hearts are steady, they will not be afraid;
in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
9 They have distributed freely, they have given to the poor;
their righteousness endures for ever;
their horn is exalted in honour.
10 The wicked see it and are angry;
they gnash their teeth and melt away;
the desire of the wicked comes to nothing.
14At that time Herod the ruler* heard reports about Jesus; 2and he said to his servants, This is John the Baptist; he has been raised from the dead, and for this reason these powers are at work in him. 3For Herod had arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philips wife,* 4because John had been telling him, It is not lawful for you to have her. 5Though Herod* wanted to put him to death, he feared the crowd, because they regarded him as a prophet. 6But when Herods birthday came, the daughter of Herodias danced before the company, and she pleased Herod 7so much that he promised on oath to grant her whatever she might ask. 8Prompted by her mother, she said, Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter. 9The king was grieved, yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he commanded it to be given; 10he sent and had John beheaded in the prison. 11The head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, who brought it to her mother. 12His disciples came and took the body and buried it; then they went and told Jesus.
13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick. 15When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves. 16Jesus said to them, They need not go away; you give them something to eat. 17They replied, We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish. 18And he said, Bring them here to me. 19Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full. 21And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
22 Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. 23And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24but by this time the boat, battered by the waves, was far from the land,* for the wind was against them. 25And early in the morning he came walking towards them on the lake. 26But when the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified, saying, It is a ghost! And they cried out in fear. 27But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.
28 Peter answered him, Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water. 29He said, Come. So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came towards Jesus. 30But when he noticed the strong wind,* he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, Lord, save me! 31Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, You of little faith, why did you doubt? 32When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33And those in the boat worshipped him, saying, Truly you are the Son of God.
34 When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret. 35After the people of that place recognized him, they sent word throughout the region and brought all who were sick to him, 36and begged him that they might touch even the fringe of his cloak; and all who touched it were healed.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011