Saturday, July 31, 2021
O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. (Psalm 51:15)
Glory to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and forever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your holy Spirit from me.
O give me the comfort of your help again,
and sustain me with your willing Spirit. (Psalm 51:10-12)
31:1 The words of King Lemuel, an oracle that his mother taught him:
2 O my son, O son of my womb,
O son of my vows,
3 do not give your strength to women,
nor your ways to that which ruins kings.
4 It is not for kings, O Lemuel,
it is not for kings to drink wine
or for rulers to crave strong drink,
5 lest they drink and forget what is decreed
and remove from all the poor their legal rights.
6 Give strong drink to the one who is perishing
and wine to those who are bitterly distressed;
7 let them drink and forget their poverty,
and remember their misery no more.
8 Open your mouth on behalf of those unable to speak,
for the legal rights of all the dying.
9 Open your mouth, judge in righteousness,
and plead the cause of the poor and needy.
10 Who can find a wife of noble character?
For her value is far more than rubies.
11 Her husband’s heart has trusted her,
and he does not lack the dividends.
12 She has rewarded him with good and not harm
all the days of her life.
13 She sought out wool and flax,
then worked happily with her hands.
14 She was like the merchant ships;
she would bring in her food from afar.
15 Then she rose while it was still night,
and provided food for her household and a portion to her female servants.
16 She considered a field and bought it;
from her own income she planted a vineyard.
17 She clothed herself in might,
and she strengthened her arms.
18 She perceived that her merchandise was good.
Her lamp would not go out in the night.
19 She extended her hands to the spool,
and her hands grasped the spindle.
20 She opened her hand to the poor,
and extended her hands to the needy.
21 She would not fear for her household in winter,
because all her household were clothed with scarlet,
22 because she had made coverings for herself;
and because her clothing was fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is well known in the city gate
when he sits with the elders of the land.
24 She made linen garments then sold them
and traded belts to the merchants;
25 her clothing was strong and splendid;
and she laughed at the time to come.
26 She has opened her mouth with wisdom,
with loving instruction on her tongue.
27 Watching over the ways of her household,
she would not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children have risen and called her blessed;
her husband also has praised her:
29 “Many daughters have done valiantly,
but you have surpassed them all!”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is fleeting.
A woman who fears the Lord—she makes herself praiseworthy.
31 Give her credit for what she has accomplished,
and let her works praise her in the city gates.
8:1 After he came down from the mountain, large crowds followed him. 2 And a leper approached and bowed low before him, saying, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” 3 He stretched out his hand and touched him saying, “I am willing. Be clean!” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed. 4 Then Jesus said to him, “See that you do not speak to anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest, and bring the offering that Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
5 When he entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him asking for help: 6 “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, in terrible anguish.” 7 Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.” 8 But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof! Instead, just say the word and my servant will be healed. 9 For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another ‘Come!’ and he comes, and to my slave ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” 10 When Jesus heard this he was amazed and said to those who followed him, “I tell you the truth, I have not found such faith in anyone in Israel! 11 I tell you, many will come from the east and west to share the banquet with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, 12 but the sons of the kingdom will be thrown out into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” 13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go; just as you believed, it will be done for you.” And the servant was healed at that hour.
14 Now when Jesus entered Peter’s house, he saw his mother-in-law lying down, sick with a fever. 15 He touched her hand, and the fever left her. Then she got up and began to serve them. 16 When it was evening, many demon-possessed people were brought to him. He drove out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick. 17 In this way what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah was fulfilled:
“He took our weaknesses and carried our diseases.”
18 Now when Jesus saw a large crowd around him, he gave orders to go to the other side of the lake. 19 Then an expert in the law came to him and said, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” 20 Jesus said to him, “Foxes have dens, and the birds in the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” 21 Another of the disciples said to him, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 22 But Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”
23 As he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. 24 And a great storm developed on the sea so that the waves began to swamp the boat. But he was asleep. 25 So they came and woke him up saying, “Lord, save us! We are about to die!” 26 But he said to them, “Why are you cowardly, you people of little faith?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it was dead calm. 27 And the men were amazed and said, “What sort of person is this? Even the winds and the sea obey him!”
28 When he came to the other side, to the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were extremely violent, so that no one was able to pass by that way. 29 They cried out, “Son of God, leave us alone! Have you come here to torment us before the time?” 30 A large herd of pigs was feeding some distance from them. 31 Then the demons begged him, “If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.” 32 And he said, “Go!” So they came out and went into the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep slope into the lake and drowned in the water. 33 The herdsmen ran off, went into the town, and told everything that had happened to the demon-possessed men. 34 Then the entire town came out to meet Jesus. And when they saw him, they begged him to leave their region.
12:1 Then a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and with the moon under her feet, and on her head was a crown of twelve stars. 2 She was pregnant and was screaming in labor pains, struggling to give birth. 3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: a huge red dragon that had seven heads and ten horns, and on its heads were seven diadem crowns. 4 Now the dragon’s tail swept away a third of the stars in heaven and hurled them to the earth. Then the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child as soon as it was born. 5 So the woman gave birth to a son, a male child, who is going to rule over all the nations with an iron rod. Her child was suddenly caught up to God and to his throne, 6 and she fled into the wilderness where a place had been prepared for her by God, so she could be taken care of for 1,260 days.
7 Then war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But the dragon was not strong enough to prevail, so there was no longer any place left in heaven for him and his angels. 9 So that huge dragon—the ancient serpent, the one called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world—was thrown down to the earth, and his angels along with him. 10 Then I heard a loud voice in heaven saying,
“The salvation and the power
and the kingdom of our God,
and the ruling authority of his Christ, have now come,
because the accuser of our brothers and sisters,
the one who accuses them day and night before our God,
has been thrown down.
11 But they overcame him
by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony,
and they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die.
12 Therefore you heavens rejoice, and all who reside in them!
But woe to the earth and the sea
because the devil has come down to you!
He is filled with terrible anger,
for he knows that he only has a little time!”
13 Now when the dragon realized that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 But the woman was given the two wings of a giant eagle so that she could fly out into the wilderness, to the place God prepared for her, where she is taken care of—away from the presence of the serpent—for a time, times, and half a time. 15 Then the serpent spouted water like a river out of his mouth after the woman in an attempt to sweep her away by a flood, 16 but the earth came to her rescue; the ground opened up and swallowed the river that the dragon had spewed from his mouth. 17 So the dragon became enraged at the woman and went away to make war on the rest of her children, those who keep God’s commandments and hold to the testimony about Jesus. (12:18) And the dragon stood on the sand of the seashore.
Prayers for Others
O Lord, our heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, you have brought us safely to the beginning of this day: Defend us by your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin nor run into any danger; and that, guided by your Spirit, we may do what is righteous in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible® copyright ©1996, 2019 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.