Select: First Reading Second Reading Bible Background
First Reading: Job Chapter 14 and 15
1 Man, that is born of a woman, Is of few days, and full of trouble.
2 He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: He fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.
3 And dost thou open thine eyes upon such a one, And bringest me into judgment with thee?
4 Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one.
5 Seeing his days are determined, The number of his months is with thee, And thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass;
6 Look away from him, that he may rest, Till he shall accomplish, as a hireling, his day.
7 For there is hope of a tree, If it be cut down, that it will sprout again, And that the tender branch thereof will not cease.
8 Though the root thereof wax old in the earth, And the stock thereof die in the ground;
9 Yet through the scent of water it will bud, And put forth boughs like a plant.
10 But man dieth, and is laid low: Yea, man giveth up the ghost, and where is he?
11 `As' the waters fail from the sea, And the river wasteth and drieth up;
12 So man lieth down and riseth not: Till the heavens be no more, they shall not awake, Nor be roused out of their sleep.
13 Oh that thou wouldest hide me in Sheol, That thou wouldest keep me secret, until thy wrath be past, That thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me!
14 If a man die, shall he live `again'? All the days of my warfare would I wait, Till my release should come.
15 Thou wouldest call, and I would answer thee: Thou wouldest have a desire to the work of thy hands.
16 But now thou numberest my steps: Dost thou not watch over my sin?
17 My transgression is sealed up in a bag, And thou fastenest up mine iniquity.
18 But the mountain falling cometh to nought; And the rock is removed out of its place;
19 The waters wear the stones; The overflowings thereof wash away the dust of the earth: So thou destroyest the hope of man.
20 Thou prevailest for ever against him, and he passeth; Thou changest his countenance, and sendest him away.
21 His sons come to honor, and he knoweth it not; And they are brought low, but he perceiveth it not of them.
22 But his flesh upon him hath pain, And his soul within him mourneth.
1 Then answered Eliphaz the Temanite, and said,
2 Should a wise man make answer with vain knowledge, And fill himself with the east wind?
3 Should he reason with unprofitable talk, Or with speeches wherewith he can do no good?
4 Yea, thou doest away with fear, And hinderest devotion before God.
5 For thine iniquity teacheth thy mouth, And thou choosest the tongue of the crafty.
6 Thine own mouth condemneth thee, and not I; Yea, thine own lips testify against thee.
7 Art thou the first man that was born? Or wast thou brought forth before the hills?
8 Hast thou heard the secret counsel of God? And dost thou limit wisdom to thyself?
9 What knowest thou, that we know not? What understandest thou, which is not in us?
10 With us are both the gray-headed and the very aged men, Much elder than thy father.
11 Are the consolations of God too small for thee, Even the word that is gentle toward thee?
12 Why doth thy heart carry thee away? And why do thine eyes flash,
13 That against God thou turnest thy spirit, And lettest words go out of thy mouth?
14 What is man, that he should be clean? And he that is born of a woman, that he should be righteous?
15 Behold, he putteth no trust in his holy ones; Yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight:
16 How much less one that is abominable and corrupt, A man that drinketh iniquity like water!
17 I will show thee, hear thou me; And that which I have seen I will declare:
18 (Which wise men have told From their fathers, and have not hid it;
19 Unto whom alone the land was given, And no stranger passed among them):
20 The wicked man travaileth with pain all his days, Even the number of years that are laid up for the oppressor.
21 A sound of terrors is in his ears; In prosperity the destroyer shall come upon him.
22 He believeth not that he shall return out of darkness, And he is waited for of the sword.
23 He wandereth abroad for bread, `saying', Where is it? He knoweth that the day of darkness is ready at his hand.
24 Distress and anguish make him afraid; They prevail against him, as a king ready to the battle.
25 Because he hath stretched out his hand against God, And behaveth himself proudly against the Almighty;
26 He runneth upon him with a `stiff' neck, With the thick bosses of his bucklers;
27 Because he hath covered his face with his fatness, And gathered fat upon his loins;
28 And he hath dwelt in desolate cities, In houses which no man inhabited, Which were ready to become heaps;
29 He shall not be rich, neither shall his substance continue, Neither shall their possessions be extended on the earth.
30 He shall not depart out of darkness; The flame shall dry up his branches, And by the breath of `God's' mouth shall he go away.
31 Let him not trust in vanity, deceiving himself; For vanity shall be his recompense.
32 It shall be accomplished before his time, And his branch shall not be green.
33 He shall shake off his unripe grape as the vine, And shall cast off his flower as the olive-tree.
34 For the company of the godless shall be barren, And fire shall consume the tents of bribery.
35 They conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity, And their heart prepareth deceit.
Second Reading: Luke Chapter 8
1 And it came to pass soon afterwards, that he went about through cities and villages, preaching and bringing the good tidings of the kingdom of God, and with him the twelve,
2 and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary that was called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out,
3 and Joanna the wife of Chuzas Herod's steward, and Susanna, and many others, who ministered unto them of their substance.
4 And when a great multitude came together, and they of every city resorted unto him, he spake by a parable:
5 The sower went forth to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden under foot, and the birds of the heaven devoured it.
6 And other fell on the rock; and as soon as it grew, it withered away, because it had no moisture.
7 And other fell amidst the thorns; and the thorns grew with it, and choked it.
8 And other fell into the good ground, and grew, and brought forth fruit a hundredfold. As he said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
9 And his disciples asked him what this parable might be.
10 And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to the rest in parables; that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.
11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
12 And those by the way side are they that have heard; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word from their heart, that they may not believe and be saved.
13 And those on the rock `are' they who, when they have heard, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.
14 And that which fell among the thorns, these are they that have heard, and as they go on their way they are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of `this' life, and bring no fruit to perfection.
15 And that in the good ground, these are such as in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, hold it fast, and bring forth fruit with patience.
16 And no man, when he hath lighted a lamp, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but putteth it on a stand, that they that enter in may see the light.
17 For nothing is hid, that shall not be made manifest; nor `anything' secret, that shall not be known and come to light.
18 Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that which he thinketh he hath.
19 And there came to him his mother and brethren, and they could not come at him for the crowd.
20 And it was told him, Thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to see thee.
21 But he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these that hear the word of God, and do it.
22 Now it came to pass on one of those days, that he entered into a boat, himself and his disciples; and he said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake: and they launched forth.
23 But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filling `with water', and were in jeopardy.
24 And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. And he awoke, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm.
25 And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And being afraid they marvelled, saying one to another, Who then is this, that he commandeth even the winds and the water, and they obey him?
26 And they arrived at the country of the Gerasenes, which is over against Galilee.
27 And when he was come forth upon the land, there met him a certain man out of the city, who had demons; and for a long time he had worn no clothes, and abode not in `any' house, but in the tombs.
28 And when he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the Most High God? I beseech thee, torment me not.
29 For he was commanding the unclean spirit to come out from the man. For oftentimes it had seized him: and he was kept under guard, and bound with chains and fetters; and breaking the bands asunder, he was driven of the demon into the deserts.
30 And Jesus asked him, What is thy name? And he said, Legion; for many demons were entered into him.
31 And they entreated him that he would not command them to depart into the abyss.
32 Now there was there a herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they entreated him that he would give them leave to enter into them. And he gave them leave.
33 And the demons came out from the man, and entered into the swine: and the herd rushed down the steep into the lake, and were drowned.
34 And when they that fed them saw what had come to pass, they fled, and told it in the city and in the country.
35 And they went out to see what had come to pass; and they came to Jesus, and found the man, from whom the demons were gone out, sitting, clothed and in his right mind, at the feet of Jesus: and they were afraid.
36 And they that saw it told them how he that was possessed with demons was made whole.
37 And all the people of the country of the Gerasenes round about asked him to depart from them, for they were holden with great fear: and he entered into a boat, and returned.
38 But the man from whom the demons were gone out prayed him that he might be with him: but he sent him away, saying,
39 Return to thy house, and declare how great things God hath done for thee. And he went his way, publishing throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done for him.
40 And as Jesus returned, the multitude welcomed him; for they were all waiting for him.
41 And behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue: and he fell down at Jesus' feet, and besought him to come into his house;
42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as he went the multitudes thronged him.
43 And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, who had spent all her living upon physicians, and could not be healed of any,
44 came behind him, and touched the border of his garment: and immediately the issue of her blood stanched.
45 And Jesus said, Who is it that touched me? And when all denied, Peter said, and they that were with him, Master, the multitudes press thee and crush `thee'.
46 But Jesus said, Some one did touch me; for I perceived that power had gone forth from me.
47 And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people for what cause she touched him, and how she was healed immediately.
48 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.
49 While he yet spake, there cometh one from the ruler of the synagogue's `house', saying, Thy daughter is dead; trouble not the Teacher.
50 But Jesus hearing it, answered him, Fear not: only believe, and she shall be made whole.
51 And when he came to the house, he suffered not any man to enter in with him, save Peter, and John, and James, and the father of the maiden and her mother.
52 And all were weeping, and bewailing her: but he said, Weep not; for she is not dead, but sleepeth.
53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead.
54 But he, taking her by the hand, called, saying, Maiden, arise.
55 And her spirit returned, and she rose up immediately: and he commanded that `something' be given her to eat.
56 And her parents were amazed: but he charged them to tell no man what had been done.
GOOD VS. EVIL
Part 2 of 7
The Bible states in several different places that evil or sin comes from the heart of mankind:
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