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22 March 2017 Bible Reading

In order to possess the land God had promised, the children of Israel were to drive out all the inhabitants of the land along with every trace of their vile idol worship. Their failure to complete this task had far-reaching consequences.  Today, we should be more careful about what we are willing to tolerate.  Like the Israelites, we will not avoid being brought down by the things we come to accept.

Numbers 33:40-35:34
40 The Canaanite, the king of Arad, who lived in the South in the land of Canaan, heard of the coming of the children of Israel. 41 They traveled from Mount Hor, and encamped in Zalmonah. 42 They traveled from Zalmonah, and encamped in Punon. 43 They traveled from Punon, and encamped in Oboth. 44 They traveled from Oboth, and encamped in Iye Abarim, in the border of Moab. 45 They traveled from Iyim, and encamped in Dibon Gad. 46 They traveled from Dibon Gad, and encamped in Almon Diblathaim. 47 They traveled from Almon Diblathaim, and encamped in the mountains of Abarim, before Nebo. 48 They traveled from the mountains of Abarim, and encamped in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho. 49 They encamped by the Jordan, from Beth Jeshimoth even to Abel Shittim in the plains of Moab. 50 Yahweh spoke to Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying, 51 Speak to the children of Israel, and tell them, “When you pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 52 then you shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, destroy all their stone idols, destroy all their molten images, and demolish all their high places. 53 You shall take possession of the land, and dwell therein; for I have given the land to you to possess it. 54 You shall inherit the land by lot according to your families; to the more you shall give the more inheritance, and to the fewer you shall give the less inheritance. Wherever the lot falls to any man, that shall be his. You shall inherit according to the tribes of your fathers.
55 “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those you let remain of them will be as pricks in your eyes and as thorns in your sides, and they will harass you in the land in which you dwell. 56 It shall happen that as I thought to do to them, so will I do to you.”
34 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Command the children of Israel, and tell them, ‘When you come into the land of Canaan (this is the land that shall fall to you for an inheritance, even the land of Canaan according to its borders), 3 then your south quarter shall be from the wilderness of Zin along by the side of Edom, and your south border shall be from the end of the Salt Sea eastward. 4 Your border shall turn about southward of the ascent of Akrabbim, and pass along to Zin; and it shall pass southward of Kadesh Barnea; and it shall go from there to Hazar Addar, and pass along to Azmon. 5 The border shall turn about from Azmon to the brook of Egypt, and it shall end at the sea.
6 “‘For the western border, you shall have the great sea and its border. This shall be your west border.
7 “‘This shall be your north border: from the great sea you shall mark out for yourselves Mount Hor. 8 From Mount Hor you shall mark out to the entrance of Hamath; and the border shall pass by Zedad. 9 Then the border shall go to Ziphron, and it shall end at Hazar Enan. This shall be your north border.
10 “‘You shall mark out your east border from Hazar Enan to Shepham. 11 The border shall go down from Shepham to Riblah, on the east side of Ain. The border shall go down, and shall reach to the side of the sea of Chinnereth eastward. 12 The border shall go down to the Jordan, and end at the Salt Sea. This shall be your land according to its borders around it.’”
13 Moses commanded the children of Israel, saying, “This is the land which you shall inherit by lot, which Yahweh has commanded to give to the nine tribes, and to the half-tribe; 14 for the tribe of the children of Reuben according to their fathers’ houses, and the tribe of the children of Gad according to their fathers’ houses, have received, and the half-tribe of Manasseh have received, their inheritance. 15 The two tribes and the half-tribe have received their inheritance beyond the Jordan at Jericho eastward, toward the sunrise.”
16 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 17 “These are the names of the men who shall divide the land to you for inheritance: Eleazar the priest, and Joshua the son of Nun. 18 You shall take one prince of every tribe, to divide the land for inheritance. 19 These are the names of the men: Of the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh. 20 Of the tribe of the children of Simeon, Shemuel the son of Ammihud. 21 Of the tribe of Benjamin, Elidad the son of Chislon. 22 Of the tribe of the children of Dan a prince, Bukki the son of Jogli. 23 Of the children of Joseph: of the tribe of the children of Manasseh a prince, Hanniel the son of Ephod. 24 Of the tribe of the children of Ephraim a prince, Kemuel the son of Shiphtan. 25 Of the tribe of the children of Zebulun a prince, Elizaphan the son of Parnach. 26 Of the tribe of the children of Issachar a prince, Paltiel the son of Azzan. 27 Of the tribe of the children of Asher a prince, Ahihud the son of Shelomi. 28 Of the tribe of the children of Naphtali a prince, Pedahel the son of Ammihud.” 29 These are they whom Yahweh commanded to divide the inheritance to the children of Israel in the land of Canaan.
35 Yahweh spoke to Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying, 2 “Command the children of Israel to give to the Levites of the inheritance of their possession cities to dwell in. You shall give suburbs for the cities around them to the Levites. 3 They shall have the cities to dwell in. Their suburbs shall be for their livestock, and for their possessions, and for all their animals.
4 “The suburbs of the cities, which you shall give to the Levites, shall be from the wall of the city and outward one thousand cubits around it. 5 You shall measure outside of the city for the east side two thousand cubits, and for the south side two thousand cubits, and for the west side two thousand cubits, and for the north side two thousand cubits, the city being in the middle. This shall be the suburbs of their cities.
6 “The cities which you shall give to the Levites, they shall be the six cities of refuge, which you shall give for the man slayer to flee to. Besides them you shall give forty-two cities. 7 All the cities which you shall give to the Levites shall be forty-eight cities together with their suburbs. 8 Concerning the cities which you shall give of the possession of the children of Israel, from the many you shall take many; and from the few you shall take few. Everyone according to his inheritance which he inherits shall give some of his cities to the Levites.” 9 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 10 “Speak to the children of Israel, and tell them, ‘When you pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 11 then you shall appoint for yourselves cities to be cities of refuge for you, that the man slayer who kills any person unwittingly may flee there. 12 The cities shall be to you for refuge from the avenger, that the man slayer not die, until he stands before the congregation for judgment. 13 The cities which you shall give shall be for you six cities of refuge. 14 You shall give three cities beyond the Jordan, and you shall give three cities in the land of Canaan. They shall be cities of refuge. 15 For the children of Israel, and for the stranger and for the foreigner living among them, shall these six cities be for refuge; that everyone who kills any person unwittingly may flee there.
16 “‘But if he struck him with an instrument of iron, so that he died, he is a murderer. The murderer shall surely be put to death. 17 If he struck him with a stone in the hand, by which a man may die, and he died, he is a murderer. The murderer shall surely be put to death. 18 Or if he struck him with a weapon of wood in the hand, by which a man may die, and he died, he is a murderer. The murderer shall surely be put to death. 19 The avenger of blood shall himself put the murderer to death. When he meets him, he shall put him to death. 20 If he shoved him out of hatred, or hurled at him, lying in wait, so that he died, 21 or in hostility struck him with his hand, so that he died, he who struck him shall surely be put to death. He is a murderer. The avenger of blood shall put the murderer to death, when he meets him.
22 “‘But if he shoved him suddenly without hostility, or hurled on him anything without lying in wait, 23 or with any stone, by which a man may die, not seeing him, and cast it on him, so that he died, and he was not his enemy, neither sought his harm; 24 then the congregation shall judge between the striker and the avenger of blood according to these ordinances. 25 The congregation shall deliver the man slayer out of the hand of the avenger of blood, and the congregation shall restore him to his city of refuge, where he had fled. He shall dwell therein until the death of the high priest, who was anointed with the holy oil.
26 “‘But if the man slayer shall at any time go beyond the border of his city of refuge, where he flees, 27 and the avenger of blood finds him outside of the border of his city of refuge, and the avenger of blood kills the man slayer; he shall not be guilty of blood, 28 because he should have remained in his city of refuge until the death of the high priest. But after the death of the high priest, the man slayer shall return into the land of his possession.
29 “‘These things shall be for a statute and ordinance to you throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
30 “‘Whoever kills any person, the murderer shall be slain at the mouth of witnesses; but one witness shall not testify against any person that he die.
31 “‘Moreover you shall take no ransom for the life of a murderer who is guilty of death; but he shall surely be put to death.
32 “‘You shall take no ransom for him who is fled to his city of refuge, that he may come again to dwell in the land, until the death of the priest.
33 “‘So you shall not pollute the land in which you are; for blood pollutes the land. No atonement can be made for the land for the blood that is shed in it, but by the blood of him who shed it. 34 You shall not defile the land which you inhabit, in the middle of which I dwell; for I, Yahweh, dwell in the middle of the children of Israel.’”

Luke 5:12-28
12 While he was in one of the cities, behold, there was a man full of leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he fell on his face, and begged him, saying, “Lord, if you want to, you can make me clean.”
13 He stretched out his hand, and touched him, saying, “I want to. Be made clean.”
Immediately the leprosy left him. 14 He commanded him to tell no one, “But go your way, and show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing according to what Moses commanded, for a testimony to them.” 15 But the report concerning him spread much more, and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by him of their infirmities. 16 But he withdrew himself into the desert, and prayed.
17 On one of those days, he was teaching; and there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every village of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. The power of the Lord was with him to heal them. 18 Behold, men brought a paralyzed man on a cot, and they sought to bring him in to lay before Jesus. 19 Not finding a way to bring him in because of the multitude, they went up to the housetop, and let him down through the tiles with his cot into the middle before Jesus. 20 Seeing their faith, he said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.”
21 The scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this that speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?”
22 But Jesus, perceiving their thoughts, answered them, “Why are you reasoning so in your hearts? 23 Which is easier to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you;’ or to say, ‘Arise and walk?’ 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” (he said to the paralyzed man), “I tell you, arise, and take up your cot, and go to your house.”
25 Immediately he rose up before them, and took up that which he was laying on, and departed to his house, glorifying God. 26 Amazement took hold on all, and they glorified God. They were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today.”
27 After these things he went out, and saw a tax collector named Levi sitting at the tax office, and said to him, “Follow me!”
28 He left everything, and rose up and followed him.

Psalm 65:1-13
For the Chief Musician. A Psalm by David. A song.
65 Praise waits for you, God, in Zion.
To you shall vows be performed.
2 You who hear prayer,
to you all men will come.
3 Sins overwhelmed me,
but you atoned for our transgressions.
4 Blessed is one whom you choose, and cause to come near,
that he may live in your courts.
We will be filled with the goodness of your house,
your holy temple.
5 By awesome deeds of righteousness, you answer us,
God of our salvation.
You who are the hope of all the ends of the earth,
of those who are far away on the sea;
6 Who by his power forms the mountains,
having armed yourself with strength;
7 who stills the roaring of the seas,
the roaring of their waves,
and the turmoil of the nations.
8 They also who dwell in faraway places are afraid at your wonders.
You call the morning’s dawn and the evening with songs of joy.
9 You visit the earth, and water it.
You greatly enrich it.
The river of God is full of water.
You provide them grain, for so you have ordained it.
10 You drench its furrows.
You level its ridges.
You soften it with showers.
You bless it with a crop.
11 You crown the year with your bounty.
Your carts overflow with abundance.
12 The wilderness grasslands overflow.
The hills are clothed with gladness.
13 The pastures are covered with flocks.
The valleys also are clothed with grain.
They shout for joy!
They also sing.

Proverbs 11:23
23 The desire of the righteous is only good.
The expectation of the wicked is wrath.

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