Daily Bible Readinghttp://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/Psalm 146:5-10http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1037http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1037<div class="ExternalClass0D29C849A2ED425FACD4245CE010477C"><p>​Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob,<br> whose hope is in the LORD their God,<br> who made heaven and earth,<br> the sea, and all that is in them;<br> who keeps faith forever;<br> who executes justice for the oppressed;<br> who gives food to the hungry.<br> The LORD sets the prisoners free;<br> the LORD opens the eyes of the blind.<br> The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down;<br> the LORD loves the righteous.<br> The LORD watches over the strangers;<br> he upholds the orphan and the widow,<br> but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.<br> The LORD will reign forever,<br> your God, O Zion, for all generations.<br> Praise the LORD!</p></div>12/09/2016Ruth 1:6-18http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1036http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1036<div class="ExternalClass8DE859A929B04E75AE02532F6F6431C0"><p>Then she started to return with her daughters-in-law from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the country of Moab that the LORD had considered his people and given them food. So she set out from the place where she had been living, she and her two daughters-in- law, and they went on their way to go back to the land of Judah. But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, &quot;Go back each of you to your mother's house. May the LORD deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me. The LORD grant that you may find security, each of you in the house of your husband.&quot; Then she kissed them, and they wept aloud. They said to her, &quot;No, we will return with you to your people.&quot; But Naomi said, &quot;Turn back, my daughters, why will you go with me? Do I still have sons in my womb that they may become your husbands? Turn back, my daughters, go your way, for I am too old to have a husband. Even if I thought there was hope for me, even if I should have a husband tonight and bear sons, would you then wait until they were grown? Would you then refrain from marrying? No, my daughters, it has been far more bitter for me than for you, because the hand of the LORD has turned against me.&quot; Then they wept aloud again. Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth clung to her.</p><p>So she said, &quot;See, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods; return after your sister-in-law.&quot; But Ruth said,<br> &quot;Do not press me to leave you<br> or to turn back from following you!<br> Where you go, I will go;<br> where you lodge, I will lodge,<br> your people shall be my people,<br> and your God my God.<br> Where you die, I will die — <br>there will I be buried.<br> May the LORD do thus and so to me,<br> and more as well,<br> if even death parts me from you!&quot;<br> When Naomi saw that she was determined to go with her, she said no more to her.</p></div>12/08/2016Matthew 12:33-37http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1035http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1035<div class="ExternalClassA27A18E7FE714F1BB6CB046B37816E1C"><p>​Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers! How can you speak good things, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person brings good things out of a good treasure, and the evil person brings evil things out of an evil treasure. I tell you, on the day of judgment you will have to give an account for every careless word you utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.&quot;</p></div>12/07/2016Psalm 21http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1034http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1034<div class="ExternalClassD791DDF49D0E4A37AB9E5491AE2A72DF"><p>In your strength the king rejoices, O LORD,<br> and in your help how greatly he exults!<br> You have given him his heart's desire,<br> and have not withheld the request of his lips.<br> Selah</p><p>For you meet him with rich blessings;<br> you set a crown of fine gold on his head.<br> He asked you for life; you gave it to him — <br>length of days forever and ever.<br> His glory is great through your help;<br> splendor and majesty you bestow on him.<br> You bestow on him blessings forever;<br> you make him glad with the joy of your presence.<br> For the king trusts in the LORD,<br> and through the steadfast love of the Most High he shall not be moved.<br> Your hand will find out all your enemies;<br> your right hand will find out those who hate you.<br> You will make them like a fiery furnace<br> when you appear.<br> The LORD will swallow them up in his wrath,<br> and fire will consume them.<br> You will destroy their offspring from the earth,<br> and their children from among humankind.<br> If they plan evil against you,<br> if they devise mischief, they will not succeed.<br> For you will put them to flight;<br> you will aim at their faces with your bows.<br> Be exalted, O LORD, in your strength!<br> We will sing and praise your power.</p><p>​</p></div>12/06/2016Isaiah 24:1-16ahttp://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1033http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1033<div class="ExternalClass6FD7BD6556C94C599341D89D196CD5B4"><p>​Now the LORD is about to lay waste the earth and make it desolate,<br> and he will twist its surface and scatter its inhabitants.<br> And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest;<br> as with the slave, so with his master;<br> as with the maid, so with her mistress;<br> as with the buyer, so with the seller;<br> as with the lender, so with the borrower;<br> as with the creditor, so with the debtor.<br> The earth shall be utterly laid waste and utterly despoiled;<br> for the LORD has spoken this word.<br> The earth dries up and withers,<br> the world languishes and withers;<br> the heavens languish together with the earth.<br> The earth lies polluted<br> under its inhabitants;<br> for they have transgressed laws,<br> violated the statutes,<br> broken the everlasting covenant.<br> Therefore a curse devours the earth,<br> and its inhabitants suffer for their guilt;<br> therefore the inhabitants of the earth dwindled,<br> and few people are left.<br> The wine dries up,<br> the vine languishes,<br> all the merry-hearted sigh.<br> The mirth of the timbrels is stilled,<br> the noise of the jubilant has ceased,<br> the mirth of the lyre is stilled.<br> No longer do they drink wine with singing;<br> strong drink is bitter to those who drink it.<br> The city of chaos is broken down,<br> every house is shut up so that no one can enter.<br> There is an outcry in the streets for lack of wine;<br> all joy has reached its eventide;<br> the gladness of the earth is banished.<br> Desolation is left in the city,<br> the gates are battered into ruins.<br> For thus it shall be on the earth<br> and among the nations,<br> as when an olive tree is beaten,<br> as at the gleaning when the grape harvest is ended.<br> They lift up their voices, they sing for joy;<br> they shout from the west over the majesty of the LORD.<br> Therefore in the east give glory to the LORD;<br> in the coastlands of the sea glorify the name of the LORD, the God of Israel.<br> From the ends of the earth we hear songs of praise,<br> of glory to the Righteous One.<br> But I say, I pine away,<br> I pine away. Woe is me!<br> For the treacherous deal treacherously,<br> the treacherous deal very treacherously.</p></div>12/05/2016Romans 15:4-13http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1032http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/1032<div class="ExternalClass5F53DF8F2C224C7BA68737F334FC32A1"><p><strong>Second Sunday of Advent</strong><br></p><p>For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, so that by steadfastness and by the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope. May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in harmony with one another, in accordance with Christ Jesus, so that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.<br> Welcome one another, therefore, just as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the circumcised on behalf of the truth of God in order that he might confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written,<br> &#160;&quot;Therefore I will confess you among the Gentiles,<br> &#160;and sing praises to your name&quot;;<br> and again he says,<br> &#160;&quot;Rejoice, O Gentiles, with his people&quot;;<br> and again,<br> &#160;&quot;Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles,<br> &#160;and let all the peoples praise him&quot;;<br> and again Isaiah says,<br> &#160;&quot;The root of Jesse shall come,<br> &#160;the one who rises to rule the Gentiles;<br> &#160;in him the Gentiles shall hope.&quot;<br> May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.​</p></div>12/04/2016