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Today's Reading
August 24

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Pastor’s Note

Today we begin reading the “psalms of ascents,” which were likely the songs sung by Israel during their annual pilgrimages to Jerusalem. These obedient worshippers sacrificed a lot of time, money, and effort to do what God asked them to do each year. May these songs remind us to sing, worship, and honestly pour out our hearts to God as we engage in the spiritual disciplines required of us in the church age. In 1 Corinthians 6 we are called to a kind of maturity in practice and doctrine that is so often lacking in Christians today.

— Pastor Mike

Psalms 120-123

Deliver Me, O Lord

A Song of Ascents.

120:1 In my distress I called to the Lord,
 and he answered me.
Deliver me, O Lord,
 from lying lips,
 from a deceitful tongue.

What shall be given to you,
 and what more shall be done to you,
 you deceitful tongue?
A warrior’s sharp arrows,
 with glowing coals of the broom tree!

Woe to me, that I sojourn in Meshech,
 that I dwell among the tents of Kedar!
Too long have I had my dwelling
 among those who hate peace.
I am for peace,
 but when I speak, they are for war!

My Help Comes from the Lord

A Song of Ascents.

121:1 I lift up my eyes to the hills.
 From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
 who made heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot be moved;
 he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel
 will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
 the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
 nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all evil;
 he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep
 your going out and your coming in
 from this time forth and forevermore.

Let Us Go to the House of the Lord

A Song of Ascents. Of David.

122:1 I was glad when they said to me,
 “Let us go to the house of the Lord!”
Our feet have been standing
 within your gates, O Jerusalem!

Jerusalem—built as a city
 that is bound firmly together,
to which the tribes go up,
 the tribes of the Lord,
as was decreed for [1] Israel,
 to give thanks to the name of the Lord.
There thrones for judgment were set,
 the thrones of the house of David.

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem!
 “May they be secure who love you!
Peace be within your walls
 and security within your towers!”
For my brothers and companions’ sake
 I will say, “Peace be within you!”
For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
 I will seek your good.

Our Eyes Look to the Lord Our God

A Song of Ascents.

123:1 To you I lift up my eyes,
 O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
Behold, as the eyes of servants
 look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maidservant
 to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to the Lord our God,
 till he has mercy upon us.

Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us,
 for we have had more than enough of contempt.
Our soul has had more than enough
 of the scorn of those who are at ease,
 of the contempt of the proud.

1 Corinthians 6

Lawsuits Against Believers

6:1 When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church? I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? But you yourselves wrong and defraud—even your own brothers! [2]

Or do you not know that the unrighteous [3] will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, [4] 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

Flee Sexual Immorality

12 “All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be enslaved by anything. 13 “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food”—and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14 And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! 16 Or do you not know that he who is joined [5] to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh.” 17 But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. 18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin [6] a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Footnotes

[1] 122:4 Or as a testimony for
[2] 6:8 Or brothers and sisters
[3] 6:9 Or wrongdoers
[4] 6:9 The two Greek terms translated by this phrase refer to the passive and active partners in consensual homosexual acts
[5] 6:16 Or who holds fast (compare Genesis 2:24 and Deuteronomy 10:20); also verse 17
[6] 6:18 Or Every sin

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