When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. Psalm 56:3
Woe to Tyrants
1 Woe to those who decree unrighteous decrees and to the writers who write oppressive decrees; 2 to deprive the needy from justice, and to rob the poor among my people of their rights, that widows may be their plunder, and that they may make the fatherless their prey! 3 What will you do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which will come from afar? To whom will you flee for help? Where will you leave your wealth?
4 They will only bow down under the prisoners,
and will fall under the slain.
For all this his anger is not turned away,
but his hand is stretched out still.
Judgment on Assyria
5 Woe to Assyria, the rod of my anger, the staff in whose hand is my indignation! 6 I will send him against a profane nation, and against the people who anger me I will give him a command to take the plunder and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the streets. 7 However he does not intend this, neither is it in his heart to do so; but it is in his heart to destroy, and to cut off many nations. 8 For he says, “Aren’t all of my princes kings? 9 Isn’t Calno like Carchemish? Isn’t Hamath like Arpad? Isn’t Samaria like Damascus?” 10 As my hand has found the kingdoms of the idols, whose engraved images exceeded those of Jerusalem and of Samaria; 11 shall I not, as I have done to Samaria and her idols, so do to Jerusalem and her idols?
12 When the Lord has finished all his work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, he will punish the fruit of the willful proud heart of the king of Assyria, and the insolence of his arrogant countenance. 13 For he has said, “By the strength of my hand I have done it, and by my wisdom; for I have understanding. I have removed the boundaries of the peoples, and have robbed their treasures. Like a valiant man I have brought down their rulers. 14 My hand has found the riches of the peoples like a nest, and like one gathers eggs that are abandoned, I have gathered all the earth. There was not one who flapped its wing, or that opened its mouth, or chirped. against me”
15 Should an ax brag against him who chops with it? Should a saw exalt itself above him who saws with it? As if a rod should lift those who lift it up, or as if a staff should lift up someone who is not wood. 16 Therefore the Lord, God of Armies, will send among his fat ones leanness; and under his glory a burning will be kindled like the burning of fire.
17 The light of Israel will be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame; and it will burn and devour his thorns and his briers in one day. 18 He will consume the glory of his forest, and of his fruitful field, both soul and body. It will be as when a standard bearer faints. 19 The remnant of the trees of his forest shall be few, so that a child could count them.
A Remnant of Israel Shall Return
20 It will come to pass in that day that the remnant of Israel, and those who have escaped from the house of Jacob will never again lean on him who struck them, but shall lean on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. 21 A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. 22 For though your people, Israel are like the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will return. A destruction is determined, overflowing with righteousness. 23 For the Lord, God of Hosts, will will accomplish the destruction that was determined, throughout all the earth.
24 Therefore the Lord, God of Hosts, says “My people who dwell in Zion, don’t be afraid of the Assyrian, though he strike you with the rod, and lift up his staff against you, as Egypt did. 25 For in a very short time, my fury will abate and my anger will be directed to their destruction.” 26 The Lord of Hosts will wield a whip upon them, as in the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb. His rod will be over the sea, and he will lift it up like he did against Egypt. 27 In that their burden will be lifted from off their shoulders, and their yoke from your neck shall be destroyed because of the fatness of your neck.
28 He has come to Aiath. He has passed through Migron. At Michmash he stores his baggage. 29 They have gone over the pass. They have taken up their lodging at Geba. Ramah trembles. Gibeah of Saul has fled. 30 Cry aloud with your voice, daughter of Gallim! Listen, Laishah! You poor Anathoth! 31 Madmenah is a fugitive. The inhabitants of Gebim flee for safety. 32 This very day he will halt at Nob. He shakes his hand at the mountain of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem.
33 The Lord, God of Hosts, will lop the boughs with terror. The tall will be cut down, and the lofty will be brought low. 34 He will cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon will fall by the Mighty One.
The Root of Jesse
1 A shoot will come out of the stock of Jesse,
and a branch out of his roots will bear fruit.
2 The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him:
the spirit of wisdom and understanding,
the spirit of counsel and might,
the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.
3 His delight will be in the fear of the Lord.
He will not judge by what he sees,
neither decide by what he hears;
4 but he will judge the poor with righteousness,
and decide with equity for the humble of the earth.
He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth;
and with the breath of his lips he will kill the wicked.
5 Righteousness will be the belt of his waist,
and faithfulness the belt of his waist.
6 The wolf will live with the lamb,
and the leopard will lie down with the young goat,
the calf, the young lion, and the fattened calf together;
and a little child will lead them.
7 The cow and the bear will graze.
Their young ones will lie down together.
The lion will eat straw like the ox.
8 The nursing child will play near a cobra’s hole,
and the weaned child will put his hand on the viper’s den.
9 They will neither hurt nor destroy anyone in all my holy mountain;
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord,
as the waters cover the sea.
10 It will happen in that day that the nations will seek the root of Jesse, who stands as a banner of the peoples; and his resting place will be glorious.
11 It will happen in that day that the Lord will set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant that is left of his people from Assyria, from Egypt, from Pathros, from Cush, from Elam, from Shinar, from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. 12 He will set up a banner for the nations, and will assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth. 13 The envy also of Ephraim will depart, and those who persecute Judah will be cut off. Ephraim will not envy Judah, and Judah will not persecute Ephraim. 14 They will fly down on the shoulders of the Philistines on the west. Together they will plunder the children of the east. They will extend their power over Edom and Moab, and the children of Ammon will obey them. 15 The Lord will utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his scorching wind he will wave his hand over the River, and will split it into seven streams, and cause men to march over in sandals. 16 There will be a highway for the remnant that is left of his people from Assyria, like there was for Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.
2 Corinthians 12:10-21
Concern for the Corinthian Church
10 Therefore I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries, in necessities, in persecutions, and in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then am I strong. 11 I have become foolish in boasting. You compelled me, for I ought to have been commended by you, for I am in no way inferior to the very best apostles, though I am nothing. 12 Truly the signs of an apostle were worked among you in all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty works. 13 For what is there in which you were made inferior to the rest of the assemblies, unless it is that I myself was not a burden to you? Forgive me this wrong.
14 This is the third time I am ready to come to you, and I will not be a burden to you; for I seek not your possessions, but you. For the children ought not to save up for the parents, but the parents for the children. 15 I will most gladly spend and be spent for your sake. If I love you more abundantly, am I loved the less? 16 Even so, I myself didn’t burden you. “But, being crafty, I caught you with deception.” 17 Did I take advantage of you by anyone of those whom I have sent to you? 18 I exhorted Titus, and I sent the brother with him. Did Titus take any advantage of you? Didn’t we walk in the same spirit? Didn’t we walk in the same steps?
19 Again, do you think that we are excusing ourselves to you? In the sight of God we speak in Christ. But all things, beloved, are for your edifying. 20 For I am afraid that by any means, when I come, I might find you not the way I want to, and that I might be found by you as you don’t desire, that by any means there would be strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, whisperings, proud thoughts, or riots, 21 that again when I come my God would humble me before you, and I would mourn for many of those who have sinned before now, and not repented of the uncleanness, sexual immorality, and lustfulness which they committed.
Be Merciful to Me, God
For the Chief Musician. To the tune of “Silent Dove in Distant Lands.” A poem by David, when the Philistines seized him in Gath.
1 Be merciful to me, my God, for man tramples me.
All day long, he attacks and oppresses me.
2 My enemies trample me all day long,
for they are many who fight arrogantly against me.
3 Whenever I am afraid,
I will put my trust in you.
4 In God, whose word I praise.
In God, I put my trust.
I will not be afraid.
What can flesh do to me?
5 All day long they twist my words.
All their thoughts are against me for evil.
6 They conspire and lurk,
watching my steps.
They are eager to take my life.
7 Will they escape despite their sin?
In anger cast down the peoples, God.
8 You keep record of my wanderings.
You put my tears into your bottle.
Are they not in your book?
9 Then my enemies shall turn back in the day that I call.
I know this: that God is for me.
10 In God, whose word I praise.
In the Lord, whose word I praise.
11 I have put my trust in God.
I will not be afraid.
What can man do to me?
12 Your vows are on me, God.
I will give thank offerings to you.
13 For you have delivered my soul from death,
and prevented my feet from falling,
that I may walk before God in the light of the living.
6 Do not eat the food of him who has a stingy eye,
and do not crave his delicacies:
7 for as he thinks about the cost, so he is.
“Eat and drink!” he says to you,
but his heart is not with you.
8 The morsel which you have eaten you shall vomit up,
and lose your good words.