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First Reading: Job Chapter 6 and 7

Job 6

6:1 Job: My Complaint Is Just

Then Job answered and said:
2 "Oh, that my grief were fully weighed,And my calamity laid with it on the scales! 3 For then it would be heavier than the sand of the sea — Therefore my words have been rash. 4 For the arrows of the Almighty are within me;My spirit drinks in their poison;The terrors of God are arrayed against me. 5 Does the wild donkey bray when it has grass,Or does the ox low over its fodder? 6 Can flavorless food be eaten without salt?Or is there any taste in the white of an egg? 7 My soul refuses to touch them;They are as loathsome food to me.
8 "Oh, that I might have my request,That God would grant me the thing that I long for! 9 That it would please God to crush me,That He would loose His hand and cut me off! 10 Then I would still have comfort;Though in anguish I would exult,He will not spare;For I have not concealed the words of the Holy One.
11 "What strength do I have, that I should hope?And what is my end, that I should prolong my life? 12 Is my strength the strength of stones?Or is my flesh bronze? 13 Is my help not within me?And is success driven from me?
14 "To him who is afflicted, kindness should be shown by his friend,Even though he forsakes the fear of the Almighty. 15 My brothers have dealt deceitfully like a brook,Like the streams of the brooks that pass away, 16 Which are dark because of the ice,And into which the snow vanishes. 17 When it is warm, they cease to flow;When it is hot, they vanish from their place. 18 The paths of their way turn aside,They go nowhere and perish. 19 The caravans of Tema look,The travelers of Sheba hope for them. 20 They are disappointed because they were confident;They come there and are confused. 21 For now you are nothing,You see terror and are afraid. 22 Did I ever say, 'Bring something to me'?Or, 'Offer a bribe for me from your wealth'? 23 Or, 'Deliver me from the enemy's hand'?Or, 'Redeem me from the hand of oppressors'?
24 "Teach me, and I will hold my tongue;Cause me to understand wherein I have erred. 25 How forceful are right words!But what does your arguing prove? 26 Do you intend to rebuke my words,And the speeches of a desperate one, which are as wind? 27 Yes, you overwhelm the fatherless,And you undermine your friend. 28 Now therefore, be pleased to look at me;For I would never lie to your face. 29 Yield now, let there be no injustice!Yes, concede, my righteousness still stands! 30 Is there injustice on my tongue?Cannot my taste discern the unsavory?

Job 7

7:1 Job: My Suffering Is Comfortless

"Is there not a time of hard service for man on earth?Are not his days also like the days of a hired man? 2 Like a servant who earnestly desires the shade,And like a hired man who eagerly looks for his wages, 3 So I have been allotted months of futility,And wearisome nights have been appointed to me. 4 When I lie down, I say, 'When shall I arise,And the night be ended?'For I have had my fill of tossing till dawn. 5 My flesh is caked with worms and dust,My skin is cracked and breaks out afresh.
6 "My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle,And are spent without hope. 7 Oh, remember that my life is a breath!My eye will never again see good. 8 The eye of him who sees me will see me no more;While your eyes are upon me, I shall no longer be. 9 As the cloud disappears and vanishes away,So he who goes down to the grave does not come up. 10 He shall never return to his house,Nor shall his place know him anymore.
11 "Therefore I will not restrain my mouth;I will speak in the anguish of my spirit;I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. 12 Am I a sea, or a sea serpent,That You set a guard over me? 13 When I say, 'My bed will comfort me,My couch will ease my complaint,' 14 Then You scare me with dreams And terrify me with visions, 15 So that my soul chooses strangling And death rather than my body. 16 I loathe my life;I would not live forever.Let me alone,For my days are but a breath.
17 "What is man, that You should exalt him,That You should set Your heart on him, 18 That You should visit him every morning,And test him every moment? 19 How long?Will You not look away from me,And let me alone till I swallow my saliva? 20 Have I sinned?What have I done to You, O watcher of men?Why have You set me as Your target,So that I am a burden to myself? 21 Why then do You not pardon my transgression,And take away my iniquity?For now I will lie down in the dust,And You will seek me diligently,But I will no longer be."

Second Reading: Luke Chapter 5

Luke 5

5:1 Four Fishermen Called as Disciples
(Matt 4:18-22; Mark 1:16-20)

So it was, as the multitude pressed about Him to hear the word of God, that He stood by the Lake of Gennesaret, 2 and saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets. 3 Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon's, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat.
4 When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, "Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch."
5 But Simon answered and said to Him, "Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net." 6 And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. 7 So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying,"Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!"
9 For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken; 10 and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men." 11 So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him.
12 Jesus Cleanses a Leper
(Matt 8:1-4; Mark 1:40-45)

And it happened when He was in a certain city, that behold, a man who was full of leprosy saw Jesus; and he fell on his face and implored Him, saying, "Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean."
13 Then He put out His hand and touched him, saying, "I am willing; be cleansed." Immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And He charged him to tell no one, "But go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as a testimony to them, just as Moses commanded."
15 However, the report went around concerning Him all the more; and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities. 16 So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.
17 Jesus Forgives and Heals a Paralytic
(Matt 9:2-8; Mark 2:1-12)

Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. 18 Then behold, men brought on a bed a man who was paralyzed, whom they sought to bring in and lay before Him. 19 And when they could not find how they might bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the housetop and let him down with his bed through the tiling into the midst before Jesus.
20 When He saw their faith, He said to him, "Man, your sins are forgiven you."
21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, "Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?"
22 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, He answered and said to them, "Why are you reasoning in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say, 'Rise up and walk'? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins" — He said to the man who was paralyzed, "I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house."
25 Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. 26 And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, "We have seen strange things today!"
27 Matthew the Tax Collector
(Matt 9:9-13; Mark 2:13-17)

After these things He went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, "Follow Me." 28 So he left all, rose up, and followed Him.
29 Then Levi gave Him a great feast in his own house. And there were a great number of tax collectors and others who sat down with them. 30 And their scribes and the Pharisees complained against His disciples, saying,"Why do You eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?"
31 Jesus answered and said to them, "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance."
33 Jesus Is Questioned About Fasting
(Matt 9:14-17; Mark 2:18-22)

Then they said to Him,"Why do the disciples of John fast often and make prayers, and likewise those of the Pharisees, but Yours eat and drink?"
34 And He said to them, "Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them? 35 But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them; then they will fast in those days."
36 Then He spoke a parable to them: "No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear, and also the piece that was taken out of the new does not match the old. 37 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. 38 But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved. 39 And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, 'The old is better.'"

Bible Background



Part 2 of 4

The book of Job lends inself to a theatrical presentation. The characters of the play in order of appearance are:


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