Monday, April 12, 2021
Ninth Day of Zadeeg
 And he went down to Caper’na-um, a city of Galilee. And he was teaching them on the sabbath;
 and they were astonished at his teaching, for his word was with authority.
 And in the synagogue there was a man who had the spirit of an unclean demon; and he cried out with a loud voice,
 “Ah! What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.”
 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” And when the demon had thrown him down in the midst, he came out of him, having done him no harm.
 And they were all amazed and said to one another, “What is this word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and they come out.”
 And reports of him went out into every place in the surrounding region.
 And he arose and left the synagogue, and entered Simon’s house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was ill with a high fever, and they besought him for her.
 And he stood over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her; and immediately she rose and served them.
 Now when the sun was setting, all those who had any that were sick with various diseases brought them to him; and he laid his hands on every one of them and healed them.
 And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them, and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.
 And Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.
 Then some of those who belonged to the synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called), and of the Cyre’nians, and of the Alexandrians, and of those from Cili’cia and Asia, arose and disputed with Stephen.
 But they could not withstand the wisdom and the Spirit with which he spoke.
 Then they secretly instigated men, who said, “We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God.”
 And they stirred up the people and the elders and the scribes, and they came upon him and seized him and brought him before the council,
 and set up false witnesses who said, “This man never ceases to speak words against this holy place and the law;
 for we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place, and will change the customs which Moses delivered to us.”
 And gazing at him, all who sat in the council saw that his face was like the face of an angel.
 And the high priest said, “Is this so?”
 And Stephen said: “Brethren and fathers, hear me. The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopota’mia, before he lived in Haran,
 and said to him, `Depart from your land and from your kindred and go into the land which I will show you.’
 Then he departed from the land of the Chalde’ans, and lived in Haran. And after his father died, God removed him from there into this land in which you are now living;
 yet he gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot’s length, but promised to give it to him in possession and to his posterity after him, though he had no child.
 And God spoke to this effect, that his posterity would be aliens in a land belonging to others, who would enslave them and ill-treat them four hundred years.
 `But I will judge the nation which they serve,’ said God, `and after that they shall come out and worship me in this place.’
 And he gave him the covenant of circumcision. And so Abraham became the father of Isaac, and circumcised him on the eighth day; and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.
 “And the patriarchs, jealous of Joseph, sold him into Egypt; but God was with him,
 and rescued him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favor and wisdom before Pharaoh, king of Egypt, who made him governor over Egypt and over all his household.
 Now there came a famine throughout all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction, and our fathers could find no food.
 But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent forth our fathers the first time.
 And at the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family became known to Pharaoh.
 And Joseph sent and called to him Jacob his father and all his kindred, seventy-five souls;
 and Jacob went down into Egypt. And he died, himself and our fathers,
 and they were carried back to Shechem and laid in the tomb that Abraham had bought for a sum of silver from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.
 “But as the time of the promise drew near, which God had granted to Abraham, the people grew and multiplied in Egypt
 till there arose over Egypt another king who had not known Joseph.
 He dealt craftily with our race and forced our fathers to expose their infants, that they might not be kept alive.
 At this time Moses was born, and was beautiful before God. And he was brought up for three months in his father’s house;
 and when he was exposed, Pharaoh’s daughter adopted him and brought him up as her own son.
 And Moses was instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and he was mighty in his words and deeds.
 “When he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel.
 And seeing one of them being wronged, he defended the oppressed man and avenged him by striking the Egyptian.
 He supposed that his brethren understood that God was giving them deliverance by his hand, but they did not understand.
 And on the following day he appeared to them as they were quarreling and would have reconciled them, saying, `Men, you are brethren, why do you wrong each other?’
 But the man who was wronging his neighbor thrust him aside, saying, `Who made you a ruler and a judge over us?
 Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?’
 At this retort Moses fled, and became an exile in the land of Mid’ian, where he became the father of two sons.
 Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good life let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom.
 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth.
 This wisdom is not such as comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, devilish.
 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.
 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insincerity.
 And the harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.
 What causes wars, and what causes fightings among you? Is it not your passions that are at war in your members?
 You desire and do not have; so you kill. And you covet and cannot obtain; so you fight and wage war. You do not have, because you do not ask.
 You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.
 Unfaithful creatures! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
 Or do you suppose it is in vain that the scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit which he has made to dwell in us”?
 But he gives more grace; therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
 No one has ever seen God; the only Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has made him known.
 And this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, “Who are you?”
 He confessed, he did not deny, but confessed, “I am not the Christ.”
 And they asked him, “What then? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the prophet?” And he answered, “No.”
 They said to him then, “Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”
 He said, “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, `Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.”
 Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.
 They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?”
 John answered them, “I baptize with water; but among you stands one whom you do not know,
 even he who comes after me, the thong of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.”
 This took place in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.
 Now when he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew into Galilee;
 and leaving Nazareth he went and dwelt in Caper’na-um by the sea, in the territory of Zeb’ulun and Naph’tali,
 that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
 “The land of Zeb’ulun and the land of Naph’tali,
toward the sea, across the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles —
 the people who sat in darkness
have seen a great light,
and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death
light has dawned.”
 From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
 As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen.
 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
 Immediately they left their nets and followed him.
 And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zeb’edee and John his brother, in the boat with Zeb’edee their father, mending their nets, and he called them.
 Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him.
 And he went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people.
 So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them.
 And great crowds followed him from Galilee and the Decap’olis and Jerusalem and Judea and from beyond the Jordan.
 Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God,
 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel.”
 And passing along by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen.
 And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you become fishers of men.”
 And immediately they left their nets and followed him.
 And going on a little farther, he saw James the son of Zeb’edee and John his brother, who were in their boat mending the nets.
 And immediately he called them; and they left their father Zeb’edee in the boat with the hired servants, and followed him.
The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyright © National Council of Churches of Christ in America