March 22: Psalm 81; Mark 3-4

Songs for today: Speak O Lord / I Am Free

Co-operative Republic of Guyana #TodaysCountry

Sing for joy to God our strength;
Shout joyfully to the God of Jacob.
Raise a song, strike the timbrel,
The sweet sounding lyre with the harp.
Blow the trumpet at the new moon,
At the full moon, on our feast day.
•••
“Hear, O My people, and I will admonish you;
O Israel, if you would listen to Me!
“Let there be no strange god among you;
Nor shall you worship any foreign god.
“I, the Lord, am your God,
Who brought you up from the land of Egypt;
Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.
•••
“Oh that My people would listen to Me,
That Israel would walk in My ways!
“I would quickly subdue their enemies
And turn My hand against their adversaries.
from Psalm 81

He entered again into a synagogue; and a man was there whose hand was withered. They were watching Him to see if He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse Him. He *said to the man with the withered hand, “Get up and come forward!” And He *said to them, “Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath, to save a life or to kill?” But they kept silent. After looking around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, He *said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately began conspiring with the Herodians against Him, as to how they might destroy Him.
•••
A crowd was sitting around Him, and they *said to Him, “Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are outside looking for You.” Answering them, He *said, “Who are My mother and My brothers?” Looking about at those who were sitting around Him, He *said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is My brother and sister and mother.”
from Mark 3

He was teaching them many things in parables, and was saying to them in His teaching,
•••
As soon as He was alone, His followers, along with the twelve, began asking Him about the parables. And He was saying to them, “To you has been given the mystery of the kingdom of God, but those who are outside get everything in parables, so that while seeing, they may see and not perceive, and while hearing, they may hear and not understand, otherwise they might return and be forgiven.”
•••
“Take care what you listen to. By your standard of measure it will be measured to you; and more will be given you besides. For whoever has, to him more shall be given; and whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.”
•••
With many such parables He was speaking the word to them, so far as they were able to hear it; and He did not speak to them without a parable; but He was explaining everything privately to His own disciples.
•••
there *arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up. Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they *woke Him and *said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”
from Mark 4

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