June 23: Prov 24; 2Chr 10-12

Song for today: I Am His and He Is Mine

Today’s country: Peoples Republic of China

If you faint in the day of adversity,
your strength is small.
Rescue those who are being taken away to death;
hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter.
If you say, “Behold, we did not know this,”
does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it,
and will he not repay man according to his work?
•••
Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,
and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles,
lest the Lord see it and be displeased,
and turn away his anger from him.
•••
Partiality in judging is not good.
Whoever says to the wicked, “You are in the right,”
will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations,
but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight,
and a good blessing will come upon them.
from Prov 24

and forsaking the counsel of the old men, King Rehoboam spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men, saying, “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to it. My father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with scorpions.” So the king did not listen to the people, for it was a turn of affairs brought about by God that the Lord might fulfill his word, which he spoke by Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
•••
So Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.
from 2Chr 10

the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah the man of God: “Say to Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all Israel in Judah and Benjamin, ‘Thus says the Lord, You shall not go up or fight against your relatives. Return every man to his home, for this thing is from me.’” So they listened to the word of the Lord and returned and did not go against Jeroboam.
from 2Chr 11

When the rule of Rehoboam was established and he was strong, he abandoned the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him. In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem
•••
Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and to the princes of Judah, who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said to them, “Thus says the Lord, You abandoned me, so I have abandoned you to the hand of Shishak.’” Then the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, “The Lord is righteous.” When the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah: “They have humbled themselves. I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance, and my wrath shall not be poured out on Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. Nevertheless, they shall be servants to him, that they may know my service and the service of the kingdoms of the countries.”
•••
Rehoboam slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David, and Abijah his son reigned in his place.
from 2Chr 12

June 22: Prov 23; 2Chr 8-9

Song for today: Rejoice the Lord is King

Today’s country: Chile

Apply your heart to instruction
and your ear to words of knowledge.
•••
Do not withhold discipline from a child;
if you strike him with a rod, he will not die.
If you strike him with the rod,
you will save his soul from Sheol.
•••
Let not your heart envy sinners,
but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day.
Surely there is a future,
and your hope will not be cut off.
from Prov 23

At the end of twenty years, in which Solomon had built the house of the Lord and his own house, Solomon rebuilt the cities that Hiram had given to him, and settled the people of Israel in them.
•••
Solomon brought Pharaoh’s daughter up from the city of David to the house that he had built for her, for he said, “My wife shall not live in the house of David king of Israel, for the places to which the ark of the Lord has come are holy.”
•••
Solomon offered up burnt offerings to the Lord on the altar of the Lord that he had built before the vestibule, as the duty of each day required, offering according to the commandment of Moses for the Sabbaths, the new moons, and the three annual feasts—the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Weeks, and the Feast of Booths.
from 2Chr 8

Now when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to Jerusalem to test him with hard questions,
•••
And she said to the king, “The report was true that I heard in my own land of your words and of your wisdom, but I did not believe the reports until I came and my own eyes had seen it. And behold, half the greatness of your wisdom was not told me; you surpass the report that I heard. Happy are your wives! Happy are these your servants, who continually stand before you and hear your wisdom! Blessed be the Lord your God, who has delighted in you and set you on his throne as king for the Lord your God! Because your God loved Israel and would establish them forever, he has made you king over them, that you may execute justice and righteousness.”
•••
Solomon reigned in Jerusalem over all Israel forty years. And Solomon slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David his father, and Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.
from 2Chr 9

June 21: Prov 22; 2Chr 5:2-7

Song for today: Unfailing Love

Today’s country: Chad

A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,
and favor is better than silver or gold.
•••
The rich and the poor meet together;
the Lord is the maker of them all.
•••
Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it.
•••
Whoever has a bountiful eye will be blessed,
for he shares his bread with the poor.
•••
Incline your ear, and hear the words of the wise,
and apply your heart to my knowledge,
for it will be pleasant if you keep them within you,
if all of them are ready on your lips.
That your trust may be in the Lord,
I have made them known to you today, even to you.
•••
Be not one of those who give pledges,
who put up security for debts.
If you have nothing with which to pay,
why should your bed be taken from under you?
from Prov 22

Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the leaders of the fathers’ houses of the people of Israel, in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of the city of David, which is Zion.
•••
it was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord), and when the song was raised, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord,
“For he is good,
for his steadfast love endures forever,”
the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God.
from 2Chr 5

Then he knelt on his knees in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, and spread out his hands toward heaven, and said, “O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven or on earth, keeping covenant and showing steadfast love to your servants who walk before you with all their heart, who have kept with your servant David my father what you declared to him. You spoke with your mouth, and with your hand have fulfilled it this day. Now therefore, O Lord, God of Israel, keep for your servant David my father what you have promised him, saying, You shall not lack a man to sit before me on the throne of Israel, if only your sons pay close attention to their way, to walk in my law as you have walked before me.’ Now therefore, O Lord, God of Israel, let your word be confirmed, which you have spoken to your servant David.
“But will God indeed dwell with man on the earth? Behold, heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain you, how much less this house that I have built! Yet have regard to the prayer of your servant and to his plea, O Lord my God, listening to the cry and to the prayer that your servant prays before you, that your eyes may be open day and night toward this house, the place where you have promised to set your name, that you may listen to the prayer that your servant offers toward this place. And listen to the pleas of your servant and of your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. And listen from heaven your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive.
•••
If your people Israel are defeated before the enemy because they have sinned against you, and they turn again and acknowledge your name and pray and plead with you in this house, then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your people Israel and bring them again to the land that you gave to them and to their fathers.
“When heaven is shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against you, if they pray toward this place and acknowledge your name and turn from their sin, when you afflict them, then hear in heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel, when you teach them the good way in which they should walk, and grant rain upon your land, which you have given to your people as an inheritance.
“If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar, if their enemies besiege them in the land at their gates, whatever plague, whatever sickness there is, whatever prayer, whatever plea is made by any man or by all your people Israel, each knowing his own affliction and his own sorrow and stretching out his hands toward this house, then hear from heaven your dwelling place and forgive and render to each whose heart you know, according to all his ways, for you, you only, know the hearts of the children of mankind, that they may fear you and walk in your ways all the days that they live in the land that you gave to our fathers.
“Likewise, when a foreigner, who is not of your people Israel, comes from a far country for the sake of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm, when he comes and prays toward this house, hear from heaven your dwelling place and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to you, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you, as do your people Israel, and that they may know that this house that I have built is called by your name.
“If your people go out to battle against their enemies, by whatever way you shall send them, and they pray to you toward this city that you have chosen and the house that I have built for your name, then hear from heaven their prayer and their plea, and maintain their cause.
“If they sin against you—for there is no one who does not sin—and you are angry with them and give them to an enemy, so that they are carried away captive to a land far or near, yet if they turn their heart in the land to which they have been carried captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captivity, saying, ‘We have sinned and have acted perversely and wickedly,’ if they repent with all their mind and with all their heart in the land of their captivity to which they were carried captive, and pray toward their land, which you gave to their fathers, the city that you have chosen and the house that I have built for your name, then hear from heaven your dwelling place their prayer and their pleas, and maintain their cause and forgive your people who have sinned against you. Now, O my God, let your eyes be open and your ears attentive to the prayer of this place.
“And now arise, O Lord God, and go to your resting place,
you and the ark of your might.
Let your priests, O Lord God, be clothed with salvation,
and let your saints rejoice in your goodness.
O Lord God, do not turn away the face of your anointed one!
Remember your steadfast love for David your servant.”
from 2Chr 6

As soon as Solomon finished his prayer, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the Lord filled the temple. And the priests could not enter the house of the Lord, because the glory of the Lord filled the Lord’s house. When all the people of Israel saw the fire come down and the glory of the Lord on the temple, they bowed down with their faces to the ground on the pavement and worshiped and gave thanks to the Lord, saying, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.”
•••
Then the Lord appeared to Solomon in the night and said to him: “I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for myself as a house of sacrifice. When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people, if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayer that is made in this place. For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that my name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will be there for all time. And as for you, if you will walk before me as David your father walked, doing according to all that I have commanded you and keeping my statutes and my rules, then I will establish your royal throne, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, You shall not lack a man to rule Israel.’
“But if you turn aside and forsake my statutes and my commandments that I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will pluck you up from my land that I have given you, and this house that I have consecrated for my name, I will cast out of my sight, and I will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples. And at this house, which was exalted, everyone passing by will be astonished and say, Why has the Lord done thus to this land and to this house?’ Then they will say, ‘Because they abandoned the Lord, the God of their fathers who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and laid hold on other gods and worshiped them and served them. Therefore he has brought all this disaster on them.’”
from 2Chr 7

June 20: Prov 21; 2Chr 1-5:1

Song for today: God is Good All the Time

Today’s country: Central African Republic

The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord;
he turns it wherever he will.
•••
Every way of a man is right in his own eyes,
but the Lord weighs the heart.
•••
To do righteousness and justice
is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.
•••
When justice is done, it is a joy to the righteous
but terror to evildoers.
•••
Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness
will find life, righteousness, and honor.
•••
No wisdom, no understanding, no counsel
can avail against the Lord.
from Prov 21

Solomon the son of David established himself in his kingdom, and the Lord his God was with him and made him exceedingly great
•••
God answered Solomon, “Because this was in your heart, and you have not asked for possessions, wealth, honor, or the life of those who hate you, and have not even asked for long life, but have asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself that you may govern my people over whom I have made you king, wisdom and knowledge are granted to you. I will also give you riches, possessions, and honor, such as none of the kings had who were before you, and none after you shall have the like.”
from 2Chr 1

Now Solomon purposed to build a temple for the name of the Lord, and a royal palace for himself.
•••
The house that I am to build will be great, for our God is greater than all gods. But who is able to build him a house, since heaven, even highest heaven, cannot contain him? Who am I to build a house for him, except as a place to make offerings before him?
from 2Chr 2

Then Solomon began to build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the Lord had appeared to David his father, at the place that David had appointed, on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. He began to build in the second month of the fourth year of his reign.
from 2Chr 3

Hiram finished the work that he did for King Solomon on the house of God: the two pillars, the bowls, and the two capitals on the top of the pillars; and the two latticeworks to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the top of the pillars; and the 400 pomegranates for the two latticeworks, two rows of pomegranates for each latticework, to cover the two bowls of the capitals that were on the pillars. He made the stands also, and the basins on the stands, and the one sea, and the twelve oxen underneath it. The pots, the shovels, the forks, and all the equipment for these Huram-abi made of burnished bronze for King Solomon for the house of the Lord.
from 2Chr 4

Thus all the work that Solomon did for the house of the Lord was finished. And Solomon brought in the things that David his father had dedicated, and stored the silver, the gold, and all the vessels in the treasuries of the house of God.
from 2Chr 5

June 19: Prov 20; 1Chr 27-29

Song for today: https://youtu.be/OaPntncSK6s

Today’s country: Cayman Islands

Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler,
and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.
•••
It is an honor for a man to keep aloof from strife,
but every fool will be quarreling.
•••
Many a man proclaims his own steadfast love,
but a faithful man who can find?
•••
The righteous who walks in his integrity—
blessed are his children after him!
•••
Who can say, “I have made my heart pure;
I am clean from my sin”?
•••
Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty;
open your eyes, and you will have plenty of bread.
•••
Do not say, “I will repay evil”;
wait for the Lord, and he will deliver you.
•••
Steadfast love and faithfulness preserve the king,
and by steadfast love his throne is upheld.
•••
The glory of young men is their strength,
but the splendor of old men is their gray hair.
•••
Blows that wound cleanse away evil;
strokes make clean the innermost parts.
from Prov 20

This is the number of the people of Israel, the heads of fathers’ houses, the commanders of thousands and hundreds, and their officers who served the king in all matters concerning the divisions that came and went, month after month throughout the year
•••
David did not count those below twenty years of age, for the Lord had promised to make Israel as many as the stars of heaven. Joab the son of Zeruiah began to count, but did not finish. Yet wrath came upon Israel for this, and the number was not entered in the chronicles of King David.
from 1Chr 27

And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will cast you off forever. Be careful now, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary; be strong and do it.”
•••
David said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous and do it. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed, for the Lord God, even my God, is with you. He will not leave you or forsake you, until all the work for the service of the house of the Lord is finished. And behold the divisions of the priests and the Levites for all the service of the house of God; and with you in all the work will be every willing man who has skill for any kind of service; also the officers and all the people will be wholly at your command.”
from 1Chr 28

And David the king said to all the assembly, “Solomon my son, whom alone God has chosen, is young and inexperienced, and the work is great, for the palace will not be for man but for the Lord God. So I have provided for the house of my God, so far as I was able,
•••
Who then will offer willingly, consecrating himself today to the Lord?”
Then the leaders of fathers’ houses made their freewill offerings, as did also the leaders of the tribes, the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, and the officers over the king’s work.
•••
Then the people rejoiced because they had given willingly, for with a whole heart they had offered freely to the Lord. David the king also rejoiced greatly.
•••
Therefore David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly. And David said: “Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name.
“But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you. For we are strangers before you and sojourners, as all our fathers were. Our days on the earth are like a shadow, and there is no abiding. O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a house for your holy name comes from your hand and is all your own. I know, my God, that you test the heart and have pleasure in uprightness. In the uprightness of my heart I have freely offered all these things, and now I have seen your people, who are present here, offering freely and joyously to you. O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our fathers, keep forever such purposes and thoughts in the hearts of your people, and direct their hearts toward you. Grant to Solomon my son a whole heart that he may keep your commandments, your testimonies, and your statutes, performing all, and that he may build the palace for which I have made provision.”
•••
Thus David the son of Jesse reigned over all Israel. The time that he reigned over Israel was forty years. He reigned seven years in Hebron and thirty-three years in Jerusalem. Then he died at a good age, full of days, riches, and honor. And Solomon his son reigned in his place.
from 1Chr 29

June 18: Prov 19; 1Chr 23-26

Song for today: From the Inside Out

Today’s country: Cape Verde

Desire without knowledge is not good,
and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way.
When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin,
his heart rages against the Lord.
•••
Good sense makes one slow to anger,
and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
•••
House and wealth are inherited from fathers,
but a prudent wife is from the Lord.
•••
Whoever keeps the commandment keeps his life;
he who despises his ways will die.
Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord,
and he will repay him for his deed.
•••
Discipline your son, for there is hope;
do not set your heart on putting him to death.
•••
Listen to advice and accept instruction,
that you may gain wisdom in the future.
•••
Many are the plans in the mind of a man,
but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
•••
The fear of the Lord leads to life,
and whoever has it rests satisfied;
he will not be visited by harm.
from Prov 19

When David was old and full of days, he made Solomon his son king over Israel.
•••
the Levites no longer need to carry the tabernacle or any of the things for its service.” For by the last words of David the sons of Levi were numbered from twenty years old and upward. For their duty was to assist the sons of Aaron for the service of the house of the Lord, having the care of the courts and the chambers, the cleansing of all that is holy, and any work for the service of the house of God.
•••
And they were to stand every morning, thanking and praising the Lord, and likewise at evening, and whenever burnt offerings were offered to the Lord on Sabbaths, new moons, and feast days
from 1Chr 23

The divisions of the sons of Aaron were these.
•••
David organized them according to the appointed duties in their service
•••
These had as their appointed duty in their service to come into the house of the Lord according to the procedure established for them by Aaron their father, as the Lord God of Israel had commanded him.
from 1Chr 24

David and the chiefs of the service also set apart for the service the sons of Asaph, and of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who prophesied with lyres, with harps, and with cymbals.
•••
these were the sons of Heman the king’s seer, according to the promise of God to exalt him, for God had given Heman fourteen sons and three daughters. They were all under the direction of their father in the music in the house of the Lord with cymbals, harps, and lyres for the service of the house of God. Asaph, Jeduthun, and Heman were under the order of the king. The number of them along with their brothers, who were trained in singing to the Lord, all who were skillful, was 288. And they cast lots for their duties, small and great, teacher and pupil alike.
from 1Chr 23

These divisions of the gatekeepers, corresponding to their chief men, had duties, just as their brothers did, ministering in the house of the Lord.
•••
These were the divisions of the gatekeepers among the Korahites and the sons of Merari.
•••
And of the Levites, Ahijah had charge of the treasuries of the house of God and the treasuries of the dedicated gifts.
from 1Chr 26

June 17: Prov 18; 1Chr 20-22

Song for today: Angels Watching Over Me

Today’s country: Canada

Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire;
he breaks out against all sound judgment.
•••
A fool takes no pleasure in understanding,
but only in expressing his opinion.
•••
The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
the righteous man runs into it and is safe.
•••
Before destruction a man’s heart is haughty,
but humility comes before honor.
If one gives an answer before he hears,
it is his folly and shame.
•••
He who finds a wife finds a good thing
and obtains favor from the Lord.
•••
A man of many companions may come to ruin,
but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
from Prov 18

These were descended from the giants in Gath, and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.
from 1Chr 20

Then Satan stood against Israel and incited David to number Israel.
•••
So Joab departed and went throughout all Israel and came back to Jerusalem. And Joab gave the sum of the numbering of the people to David.
•••
But he did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering, for the king’s command was abhorrent to Joab.
But God was displeased with this thing, and he struck Israel. And David said to God, “I have sinned greatly in that I have done this thing. But now, please take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have acted very foolishly.” And the Lord spoke to Gad, David’s seer, saying, “Go and say to David, ‘Thus says the Lord, Three things I offer you; choose one of them, that I may do it to you.’” So Gad came to David and said to him, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Choose what you will:
•••
Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is very great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.”
So the Lord sent a pestilence on Israel, and 70,000 men of Israel fell.
•••
And David said to God, “Was it not I who gave command to number the people? It is I who have sinned and done great evil. But these sheep, what have they done? Please let your hand, O Lord my God, be against me and against my father’s house. But do not let the plague be on your people.”
•••
But King David said to Ornan, “No, but I will buy them for the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, nor offer burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” So David paid Ornan 600 shekels of gold by weight for the site. And David built there an altar to the Lord and presented burnt offerings and peace offerings and called on the Lord, and the Lord answered him with fire from heaven upon the altar of burnt offering. Then the Lord commanded the angel, and he put his sword back into its sheath.
from 1Chr 21

Then David said, “Here shall be the house of the Lord God and here the altar of burnt offering for Israel.”
•••
David said, “Solomon my son is young and inexperienced, and the house that is to be built for the Lord must be exceedingly magnificent, of fame and glory throughout all lands. I will therefore make preparation for it.” So David provided materials in great quantity before his death.
•••
He shall build a house for my name. He shall be my son, and I will be his father, and I will establish his royal throne in Israel forever.’
•••
may the Lord grant you discretion and understanding, that when he gives you charge over Israel you may keep the law of the Lord your God. Then you will prosper if you are careful to observe the statutes and the rules that the Lord commanded Moses for Israel. Be strong and courageous. Fear not; do not be dismayed.
from 1Chr 22