Bible 2016: 4 December Daily Bible Reading
Context and Comment:
Today’s reading brings us to the close of Daniel. In concluding the prophecies of chapter 11, the angelic being, Michael, intervenes to deliver the Jews. The dead will be resurrected, some to everlasting life, some to everlasting contempt. The righteous and wise shall shine like the stars. Daniel is told to shut up his words, and seal the book until the end of time. The time of trouble will be for a time, times and half a time: three and a half years. God will purify and preserve His people, and has set a limit of days to the time of trouble.
36 The king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods; and he shall prosper until the indignation be accomplished; for that which is determined shall be done. 37 Neither shall he regard the gods of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall magnify himself above all. 38 But in his place shall he honor the god of fortresses; and a god whom his fathers didn’t know shall he honor with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things. 39 He shall deal with the strongest fortresses by the help of a foreign god: whoever acknowledges him he will increase with glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for a price. 40 At the time of the end shall the king of the south contend with him; and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass through. 41 He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall be delivered out of his hand: Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon. 42 He shall stretch out his hand also on the countries; and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps. 44 But news out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him; and he shall go out with great fury to destroy and utterly to sweep away many. 45 He shall plant the tents of his palace between the sea and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one shall help him.
12 “At that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince who stands for the children of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who shall be found written in the book. 2 Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. 3 Those who are wise shall shine as the brightness of the expanse; and those who turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever. 4 But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run back and forth, and knowledge shall be increased.”
5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, two others stood, one on the river bank on this side, and the other on the river bank on that side. 6 One said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? 7 I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven, and swore by him who lives forever that it shall be for a time, times, and a half; and when they have finished breaking in pieces the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished. 8 I heard, but I didn’t understand: then I said, my lord, what shall be the issue of these things? 9 He said, Go your way, Daniel; for the words are shut up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many shall purify themselves, and make themselves white, and be refined; but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand; but those who are wise shall understand. 11 From the time that the continual burnt offering shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred ninety days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred thirty-five days. 13 But go you your way until the end; for you shall rest, and shall stand in your lot, at the end of the days.
1 John 4
4 Beloved, don’t believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit who confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 3 and every spirit who doesn’t confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God, and this is the spirit of the Antichrist, of whom you have heard that it comes. Now it is in the world already. 4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world. 5 They are of the world. Therefore they speak of the world, and the world hears them. 6 We are of God. He who knows God listens to us. He who is not of God doesn’t listen to us. By this we know the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves has been born of God, and knows God. 8 He who doesn’t love doesn’t know God, for God is love. 9 By this God’s love was revealed in us, that God has sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son as the atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God loved us in this way, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God remains in us, and his love has been perfected in us.
13 By this we know that we remain in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him, and he in God. 16 We know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and he who remains in love remains in God, and God remains in him. 17 In this love has been made perfect among us, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment, because as he is, even so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has punishment. He who fears is not made perfect in love. 19 We love him, because he first loved us. 20 If a man says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who doesn’t love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? 21 This commandment we have from him, that he who loves God should also love his brother.
A Song of Ascents.
123 To you I do lift up my eyes,
you who sit in the heavens.
2 Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress;
so our eyes look to Yahweh, our God,
until he has mercy on us.
3 Have mercy on us, Yahweh, have mercy on us,
for we have endured much contempt.
4 Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scoffing of those who are at ease,
with the contempt of the proud.
2 When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice;
but when the wicked rule, the people groan.
3 Whoever loves wisdom brings joy to his father;
but a companion of prostitutes squanders his wealth.
4 The king by justice makes the land stable,