For you will bless the righteous. God, you will surround him with favor as with a shield.  Psalm 5:12

1 Chronicles 5, 6:1-30

1 Chronicles 5

Descendants of Reuben

1 These are the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel (for he was the firstborn, but because he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given to the sons of Joseph the son of Israel, and the genealogy is not to be listed according to birthright. 2 For though Judah prevailed above his brothers, and a ruler came from him, the birthright belonged to Joseph).

3 The sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel:
Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.

4 The sons of Joel:
Shemaiah his son, Gog his son, Shimei his son, 5 Micah his son, Reaiah his son, Baal his son, 6 and Beerah his son, whom Tilgath Pilneser king of Assyria took captive.

Beerah was a leader of the Reubenites. 7 His brothers by their families, when the genealogy of their generations was listed: the chief, Jeiel, and Zechariah, 8 and Bela the son of Azaz, the son of Shema, the son of Joel, who lived in Aroer, to Nebo and Baal Meon. 9 They settled to the east to the borders of the wilderness from the river Euphrates because their livestock were multiplied in the land of Gilead.

10 In the days of Saul, they waged war with the Hagrites, who fell by their hand, and they lived in their tents throughout all the land east of Gilead.

Descendants of Gad

11 The descendants of Gad lived beside the Reubenites, in the land of Bashan to Salecah:

12 Joel the chief, Shapham the second, Janai, and Shaphat in Bashan.

13 Their relatives, by family: Michael, Meshullam, Sheba, Jorai, Jacan, Zia, and Eber. There were seven.

14 These were the sons of Abihail:

The son of Huri, the son of Jaroah, the son of Gilead, the son of Michael, the son of Jeshishai, the son of Jahdo, the son of Buz, 15 Ahi the son of Abdiel, the son of Guni, chief of their fathers’ houses.

16 They lived in Gilead in Bashan, and in its towns, and in all the pasture lands of Sharon, as far as their borders. 17 All these were listed by genealogies in the days of Jotham king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam king of Israel.

Victory over the Hagarites

18 The descendants of Reuben, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, of valiant men, men able to bear buckler and sword and to shoot with bow and skillful in war, were 44,760 that were able to go out to war. 19 They waged war with the Hagrites, with Jetur, and Naphish, and Nodab.

20 They were helped against their enemies, and the Hagrites were delivered into their hand, and all who were with them, for they cried to God in battle, and he answered them because they put their trust in him. 21 They took their livestock; 50,000 of their camels, 250,000 of their sheep, and 2,000 of their donkeys; and of their men, 100,000. 22 For many fell slain because the battle belonged to God. They lived in their place until the captivity.

The Half-Tribe of Manasseh

23 The people of the half-tribe of Manasseh lived in the land. They dwelt from Bashan to Baal Hermon, Senir, and Mount Hermon and were very numerous. 24 These were the heads of their families:

Epher, Ishi, Eliel, Azriel, Jeremiah, Hodaviah, and Jahdiel, mighty men of valor, famous men, heads of their families.

25 But they trespassed against the God of their fathers and prostituted themselves with the gods of the peoples of the land, whom God had destroyed before them. 26 So the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, and the spirit of Tilgath Pilneser king of Assyria, and he took captive, the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, and brought them to Halah, Habor, Hara, and to the river of Gozan, to this day.

1 Chronicles 6

Descendants of Levi

1 The sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.

2 The sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel.

3 The children of Amram: Aaron, Moses, and Miriam.
The sons of Aaron: Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.
4 Eleazar became the father of Phinehas,
Phinehas became the father of Abishua,
5 Abishua became the father of Bukki.
Bukki became the father of Uzzi.
6 Uzzi became the father of Zerahiah.
Zerahiah became the father of Meraioth.
7 Meraioth became the father of Amariah.
Amariah became the father of Ahitub.
8 Ahitub became the father of Zadok.
Zadok became the father of Ahimaaz.
9 Ahimaaz became the father of Azariah.
Azariah became the father of Johanan.
10 Johanan became the father of Azariah, who executed the priest’s office in the house that Solomon built in Jerusalem.
11 Azariah became the father of Amariah.
Amariah became the father of Ahitub.
12 Ahitub became the father of Zadok.
Zadok became the father of Shallum.
13 Shallum became the father of Hilkiah.
Hilkiah became the father of Azariah.
14 Azariah became the father of Seraiah.
Seraiah became the father of Jehozadak.
15 Jehozadak was exiled, when God sent Judah and Jerusalem into captivity at the hand of Nebuchadnezzar.

The Levite Clans

16 The sons of Levi: Gershom, Kohath, and Merari.
17 These are the names of the sons of Gershom: Libni and Shimei.
18 The sons of Kohath were Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel.
19 The sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi.

These are the families of the Levites according to their fathers’ households:

20 Of Gershom: Libni his son, Jahath his son, Zimmah his son,
21 Joah his son, Iddo his son, Zerah his son, and Jeatherai his son.

22 The sons of Kohath: Amminadab his son, Korah his son, Assir his son, 23 Elkanah his son, and Ebiasaph his son, Assir his son, 24 Tahath his son, Uriel his son, Uzziah his son, and Shaul his son.

25 The sons of Elkanah: Amasai and Ahimoth.
26 As for Elkanah, the sons of Elkanah: Zophai his son, Nahath his son,
27 Eliab his son, Jeroham his son, and Elkanah his son.

28 The sons of Samuel: the firstborn, Joel, and the second, Abijah.

29 The sons of Merari: Mahli, Libni his son, Shimei his son, Uzzah his son, 30 Shimea his son, Haggiah his son, Asaiah his son.

Acts 25

Paul’s Trial Before Festus

1 Three days after arriving in the province, Festus went up to Jerusalem from Caesarea, 2 where the high priest and the Jewish leaders brought their case against Paul. They urged Festus, 3 asking a favor against Paul, that Festus would summon Paul to Jerusalem, because they were plotting to kill him on the way. 4 However Festus answered that Paul should be kept in custody at Caesarea and that he himself was about to depart shortly. 5 He said, “Let those who are in power among you go down with me, and if there is anything wrong in the man, let them accuse him.”

6 After he had been staying among them for more than eight days, he went down to Caesarea. The next day he sat on the judgment seat and commanded Paul to be brought in.

7 When he had come in, the Jews who had come down from Jerusalem stood around him, bringing against him many serious charges which they could not prove, 8 while Paul said in his defense, “Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar, have I sinned at all.”

9 But Festus, wanting to gain favor with the Jews, answered Paul, “Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and be judged by me there concerning these things?”

Paul Appeals to Caesar

10 But Paul said, “I am standing before Caesar’s judgment seat, where I ought to be tried. I have done no wrong to the Jews, as you also know very well. 11 For if I have done wrong and have committed anything worthy of death, I don’t refuse to die, but if none of those things are true that they accuse me of, no one can give me up to them. I appeal to Caesar!”

12 Then Festus, when he had conferred with the council, answered, “You have appealed to Caesar. To Caesar you shall go.”

Festus Consults King Agrippa

13 Now when some days had passed, King Agrippa and Bernice arrived at Caesarea and greeted Festus. 14 After he had stayed there many days, Festus laid Paul’s case before the king, saying, “There is a certain man left a prisoner by Felix, 15 about whom, when I was at Jerusalem, the chief priests and the elders of the Jews informed me, asking for a sentence against him.

16 I answered them that it is not the custom of the Romans to give up any man to destruction before the accused has met the accusers face to face and has had opportunity to make his defense concerning the matter laid against him. 17 When they had come together here, I didn’t delay, but the next day sat on the judgment seat and commanded the man to be brought in.

18 When the accusers stood up, they brought no charges against him of such things as I supposed, 19 but had certain questions against him about their own religion and about one Jesus, who was dead, whom Paul affirmed to be alive. 20 Being at a loss as to how to investigate these things, I asked whether Paul was willing to go to Jerusalem and be judged there concerning these matters. 21 But when Paul had appealed to be kept for the decision of the emperor, I commanded him to be kept until I could send him to Caesar.”

22 Agrippa said to Festus, “I also would like to hear the man myself.”
“Tomorrow,” he said, “you shall hear him.”

Paul Before Agrippa and Bernice

23 So the next day, when Agrippa and Bernice had come with great pomp, and they had entered into the place of hearing with the commanding officers and the principal men of the city, at the command of Festus, Paul was brought in.

24 Festus said, “King Agrippa and all men who are here present with us, you see this man. The whole multitude of the Jews petitioned me about him, both here and at Jerusalem, crying out that he ought not to live any longer. 25 But I found that he had committed nothing worthy of death, and as he himself appealed to the emperor, I decided to send him.

26 I have nothing certain to write to my lord. Therefore I have brought him before you, King Agrippa, that after this examination, I may have something to write. 27 For it seems to me unreasonable to send a prisoner without also specifying the charges against him.”

Psalm 5

Give Ear to My Words

For the Chief Musician, with the flutes. A Psalm by David.

1 Give ear to my words, Lord.
Consider my meditation.
2 Listen to the cry of my voice, my King and my God,
for I pray to you.

3 Lord, in the morning you will hear my voice.
In the morning I will lay my requests before you and will watch expectantly.

4 For you are not a God who has pleasure in wickedness.
Evil cannot dwell with you.
5 The arrogant will not stand in your sight.
You hate all workers of iniquity.
6 You will destroy those who speak lies.
The Lord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man.

7 But as for me, in the abundance of your loving kindness I will come into your house.
I will bow toward your holy temple in reverence of you.

8 Lead me, Lord, in your righteousness because of my enemies.
Make your way straight before me.
9 For there is no faithfulness in their mouth.
Their heart is destruction.
Their throat is an open tomb.
They flatter with their tongue.

10 Hold them guilty, God.
Let them fall by their own counsels.
Thrust them out in the multitude of their transgressions,
for they have rebelled against you.

11 But let all those who take refuge in you rejoice.
Let them always shout for joy, because you defend them.
Let them also, who love your name, be joyful in you.
12 For you, Lord, will bless the righteous.
You will surround him with favor like a shield.

Proverbs 18:19

19 A brother offended is more difficult than a fortified city.
Disputes are like the bars of a fortress.

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