16 October 2017 Bible Reading
In today’s Bible reading, we begin our study of First Timothy. Paul wrote to Timothy to encourage him in his responsibility for overseeing the work of the Ephesian church and possibly the other churches in the province of Asia (1 Timothy 1:3). First Timothy is a leadership manual for church organization and administration.
28 That same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, in the fifth month, Hananiah the son of Azzur, the prophet, who was of Gibeon, spoke to me in Yahweh’s house, in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying, 2 Thus speaks Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel, saying, I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon. 3 Within two full years will I bring again into this place all the vessels of Yahweh’s house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place, and carried to Babylon: 4 and I will bring again to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, with all the captives of Judah, who went to Babylon, says Yahweh; for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon. 5 Then the prophet Jeremiah said to the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests, and in the presence of all the people who stood in Yahweh’s house, 6 even the prophet Jeremiah said, Amen: Yahweh do so; Yahweh perform your words which you have prophesied, to bring again the vessels of Yahweh’s house, and all them of the captivity, from Babylon to this place. 7 Nevertheless hear you now this word that I speak in your ears, and in the ears of all the people: 8 The prophets who have been before me and before you of old prophesied against many countries, and against great kingdoms, of war, and of evil, and of pestilence. 9 The prophet who prophesies of peace, when the word of the prophet shall happen, then shall the prophet be known, that Yahweh has truly sent him. 10 Then Hananiah the prophet took the bar from off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck, and broke it. 11 Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, Yahweh says: Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon within two full years from off the neck of all the nations. The prophet Jeremiah went his way. 12 Then Yahweh’s word came to Jeremiah, after that Hananiah the prophet had broken the bar from off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, saying, 13 Go, and tell Hananiah, saying, Yahweh says: You have broken the bars of wood; but you have made in their place bars of iron. 14 For Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel says: I have put a yoke of iron on the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and they shall serve him: and I have given him the animals of the field also. 15 Then the prophet Jeremiah said to Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah: Yahweh has not sent you; but you make this people to trust in a lie. 16 Therefore Yahweh says, Behold, I will send you away from off the surface of the earth: this year you shall die, because you have spoken rebellion against Yahweh. 17 So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.
29 Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem to the residue of the elders of the captivity, and to the priests, to the prophets, and to all the people, whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon, 2 (after that Jeconiah the king, the queen mother, the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, the craftsmen, and the smiths, had departed from Jerusalem), 3 by the hand of Elasah the son of Shaphan, and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah, (whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent to Babylon to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), saying, 4 Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel, says to all the captivity, whom I have caused to be carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon: 5 Build houses, and dwell in them; and plant gardens, and eat their fruit. 6 Take wives, and father sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons, and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters; and multiply there, and don’t be diminished. 7 Seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to Yahweh for it; for in its peace you shall have peace. 8 For Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel says: Don’t let your prophets who are among you, and your diviners, deceive you; neither listen to your dreams which you cause to be dreamed. 9 For they prophesy falsely to you in my name: I have not sent them, says Yahweh. 10 For Yahweh says, After seventy years are accomplished for Babylon, I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. 11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says Yahweh, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you hope and a future. 12 You shall call on me, and you shall go and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You shall seek me, and find me, when you shall search for me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you, says Yahweh, and I will turn again your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places where I have driven you, says Yahweh; and I will bring you again to the place from where I caused you to be carried away captive. 15 Because you have said, Yahweh has raised us up prophets in Babylon; 16 Yahweh says concerning the king who sits on David’s throne, and concerning all the people who dwell in this city, your brothers who haven’t gone with you into captivity; 17 Yahweh of Armies says: Behold, I will send on them the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, and will make them like vile figs, that can’t be eaten, they are so bad. 18 I will pursue after them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliver them to be tossed back and forth among all the kingdoms of the earth, to be an object of horror, and an astonishment, and a hissing, and a reproach, among all the nations where I have driven them; 19 because they have not listened to my words, says Yahweh, with which I sent to them my servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them; but you would not hear, says Yahweh. 20 Hear therefore Yahweh’s word, all you of the captivity, whom I have sent away from Jerusalem to Babylon. 21 Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel, says concerning Ahab the son of Kolaiah, and concerning Zedekiah the son of Maaseiah, who prophesy a lie to you in my name: Behold, I will deliver them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and he shall kill them before your eyes; 22 and of them shall be taken up a curse by all the captives of Judah who are in Babylon, saying, Yahweh make you like Zedekiah and like Ahab, whom the king of Babylon roasted in the fire; 23 because they have worked folly in Israel, and have committed adultery with their neighbors’ wives, and have spoken words in my name falsely, which I didn’t command them; and I am he who knows, and am witness, says Yahweh. 24 Concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite you shall speak, saying, 25 Thus speaks Yahweh of Armies, the God of Israel, saying, Because you have sent letters in your own name to all the people who are at Jerusalem, and to Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah, the priest, and to all the priests, saying, 26 Yahweh has made you priest in the place of Jehoiada the priest, that there may be officers in Yahweh’s house, for every man who is mad, and makes himself a prophet, that you should put him in the stocks and in shackles. 27 Now therefore, why have you not rebuked Jeremiah of Anathoth, who makes himself a prophet to you, 28 because he has sent to us in Babylon, saying, The captivity is long: build houses, and dwell in them; and plant gardens, and eat their fruit? 29 Zephaniah the priest read this letter in the ears of Jeremiah the prophet. 30 Then Yahweh’s word came to Jeremiah, saying, 31 Send to all them of the captivity, saying, Yahweh says concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite: Because Shemaiah has prophesied to you, and I didn’t send him, and he has caused you to trust in a lie; 32 therefore Yahweh says, Behold, I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite, and his offspring; he shall not have a man to dwell among this people, neither shall he see the good that I will do to my people, says Yahweh, because he has spoken rebellion against Yahweh.
1 Timothy 1
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus according to the commandment of God our Savior, and Christ Jesus our hope; 2 to Timothy, my true child in faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God our Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
3 As I urged you when I was going into Macedonia, stay at Ephesus that you might command certain men not to teach a different doctrine, 4 and not to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which cause disputes, rather than God’s stewardship, which is in faith— 5 but the goal of this command is love, out of a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith; 6 from which things some, having missed the mark, have turned aside to vain talking; 7 desiring to be teachers of the law, though they understand neither what they say, nor about what they strongly affirm. 8 But we know that the law is good, if a man uses it lawfully, 9 as knowing this, that law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for man slayers, 10 for the sexually immoral, for homosexuals, for slave-traders, for liars, for perjurers, and for any other thing contrary to the sound doctrine; 11 according to the Good News of the glory of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust. 12 And I thank him who enabled me, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he counted me faithful, appointing me to service; 13 although I was before a blasphemer, a persecutor, and insolent. However, I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord abounded exceedingly with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 15 The saying is faithful and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. 16 However, for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first, Jesus Christ might display all his patience, for an example of those who were going to believe in him for eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.
18 This instruction I commit to you, my child Timothy, according to the prophecies which led the way to you, that by them you may wage the good warfare; 19 holding faith and a good conscience; which some having thrust away made a shipwreck concerning the faith; 20 of whom is Hymenaeus and Alexander; whom I delivered to Satan, that they might be taught not to blaspheme.
A Prayer by David.
86 Hear, Yahweh, and answer me,
for I am poor and needy.
2 Preserve my soul, for I am godly.
You, my God, save your servant who trusts in you.
3 Be merciful to me, Lord,
for I call to you all day long.
4 Bring joy to the soul of your servant,
for to you, Lord, do I lift up my soul.
5 For you, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive;
abundant in loving kindness to all those who call on you.
6 Hear, Yahweh, my prayer.
Listen to the voice of my petitions.
7 In the day of my trouble I will call on you,
for you will answer me.
8 There is no one like you among the gods, Lord,
nor any deeds like your deeds.
9 All nations you have made will come and worship before you, Lord.
They shall glorify your name.
10 For you are great, and do wondrous things.
You are God alone.
11 Teach me your way, Yahweh.
I will walk in your truth.
Make my heart undivided to fear your name.
12 I will praise you, Lord my God, with my whole heart.
I will glorify your name forever more.
13 For your loving kindness is great toward me.
You have delivered my soul from the lowest Sheol.
14 God, the proud have risen up against me.
A company of violent men have sought after my soul,
and they don’t hold regard for you before them.
15 But you, Lord, are a merciful and gracious God,
slow to anger, and abundant in loving kindness and truth.
16 Turn to me, and have mercy on me!
Give your strength to your servant.
Save the son of your servant.
17 Show me a sign of your goodness,
that those who hate me may see it, and be shamed,
because you, Yahweh, have helped me, and comforted me.
17 Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house,
lest he be weary of you, and hate you.