Read the Bible | July 18th
Teach Me Your Paths
 To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
 O my God, in you I trust;
let me not be put to shame;
let not my enemies exult over me.
 Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame;
they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
 Make me to know your ways, O LORD;
teach me your paths.
 Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
 Remember your mercy, O LORD, and your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
 Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for the sake of your goodness, O LORD!
 Good and upright is the LORD;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
 He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
 All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
 For your name's sake, O LORD,
pardon my guilt, for it is great.
 Who is the man who fears the LORD?
Him will he instruct in the way that he should choose.
 His soul shall abide in well-being,
and his offspring shall inherit the land.
 The friendship of the LORD is for those who fear him,
and he makes known to them his covenant.
 My eyes are ever toward the LORD,
for he will pluck my feet out of the net.
 Turn to me and be gracious to me,
for I am lonely and afflicted.
 The troubles of my heart are enlarged;
bring me out of my distresses.
 Consider my affliction and my trouble,
and forgive all my sins.
 Consider how many are my foes,
and with what violent hatred they hate me.
 Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me!
Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
 May integrity and uprightness preserve me,
for I wait for you.
 Redeem Israel, O God,
out of all his troubles. (ESV)
I Will Bless the LORD
 Vindicate me, O LORD,
for I have walked in my integrity,
and I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.
 Prove me, O LORD, and try me;
test my heart and my mind.
 For your steadfast love is before my eyes,
and I walk in your faithfulness.
 I do not sit with men of falsehood,
nor do I consort with hypocrites.
 I hate the assembly of evildoers,
and I will not sit with the wicked.
 I wash my hands in innocence
and go around your altar, O LORD,
 proclaiming thanksgiving aloud,
and telling all your wondrous deeds.
 O LORD, I love the habitation of your house
and the place where your glory dwells.
 Do not sweep my soul away with sinners,
nor my life with bloodthirsty men,
 in whose hands are evil devices,
and whose right hands are full of bribes.
 But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity;
redeem me, and be gracious to me.
 My foot stands on level ground;
in the great assembly I will bless the LORD. (ESV)
The LORD Is My Light and My Salvation
 The LORD is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?
 When evildoers assail me
to eat up my flesh,
my adversaries and foes,
it is they who stumble and fall.
 Though an army encamp against me,
my heart shall not fear;
though war arise against me,
yet I will be confident.
 One thing have I asked of the LORD,
that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the LORD
all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD
and to inquire in his temple.
 For he will hide me in his shelter
in the day of trouble;
he will conceal me under the cover of his tent;
he will lift me high upon a rock.
 And now my head shall be lifted up
above my enemies all around me,
and I will offer in his tent
sacrifices with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make melody to the LORD.
 Hear, O LORD, when I cry aloud;
be gracious to me and answer me!
 You have said, “Seek my face.”
My heart says to you,
“Your face, LORD, do I seek.”
 Hide not your face from me.
Turn not your servant away in anger,
O you who have been my help.
Cast me not off; forsake me not,
O God of my salvation!
 For my father and my mother have forsaken me,
but the LORD will take me in.
 Teach me your way, O LORD,
and lead me on a level path
because of my enemies.
 Give me not up to the will of my adversaries;
for false witnesses have risen against me,
and they breathe out violence.
 I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living!
 Wait for the LORD;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the LORD! (ESV)
The LORD Is My Strength and My Shield
 To you, O LORD, I call;
my rock, be not deaf to me,
lest, if you be silent to me,
I become like those who go down to the pit.
 Hear the voice of my pleas for mercy,
when I cry to you for help,
when I lift up my hands
toward your most holy sanctuary.
 Do not drag me off with the wicked,
with the workers of evil,
who speak peace with their neighbors
while evil is in their hearts.
 Give to them according to their work
and according to the evil of their deeds;
give to them according to the work of their hands;
render them their due reward.
 Because they do not regard the works of the LORD
or the work of his hands,
he will tear them down and build them up no more.
 Blessed be the LORD!
For he has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy.
 The LORD is my strength and my shield;
in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;
my heart exults,
and with my song I give thanks to him.
 The LORD is the strength of his people;
he is the saving refuge of his anointed.
 Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!
Be their shepherd and carry them forever. (ESV)
Ascribe to the LORD Glory
A Psalm of David.
 Ascribe to the LORD, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.
 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.
 The voice of the LORD is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the LORD, over many waters.
 The voice of the LORD is powerful;
the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.
 The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars;
the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
 He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf,
and Sirion like a young wild ox.
 The voice of the LORD flashes forth flames of fire.
 The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness;
the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
 The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth
and strips the forests bare,
and in his temple all cry, “Glory!”
 The LORD sits enthroned over the flood;
the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.
 May the LORD give strength to his people!
May the LORD bless his people with peace! (ESV)
Paul Visits James
 When we had come to Jerusalem, the brothers received us gladly.  On the following day Paul went in with us to James, and all the elders were present.  After greeting them, he related one by one the things that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry.  And when they heard it, they glorified God. And they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed. They are all zealous for the law,  and they have been told about you that you teach all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or walk according to our customs.  What then is to be done? They will certainly hear that you have come.  Do therefore what we tell you. We have four men who are under a vow;  take these men and purify yourself along with them and pay their expenses, so that they may shave their heads. Thus all will know that there is nothing in what they have been told about you, but that you yourself also live in observance of the law.  But as for the Gentiles who have believed, we have sent a letter with our judgment that they should abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what has been strangled, and from sexual immorality.”  Then Paul took the men, and the next day he purified himself along with them and went into the temple, giving notice when the days of purification would be fulfilled and the offering presented for each one of them.
Paul Arrested in the Temple
 When the seven days were almost completed, the Jews from Asia, seeing him in the temple, stirred up the whole crowd and laid hands on him,  crying out, “Men of Israel, help! This is the man who is teaching everyone everywhere against the people and the law and this place. Moreover, he even brought Greeks into the temple and has defiled this holy place.”  For they had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian with him in the city, and they supposed that Paul had brought him into the temple.  Then all the city was stirred up, and the people ran together. They seized Paul and dragged him out of the temple, and at once the gates were shut.  And as they were seeking to kill him, word came to the tribune of the cohort that all Jerusalem was in confusion.  He at once took soldiers and centurions and ran down to them. And when they saw the tribune and the soldiers, they stopped beating Paul.  Then the tribune came up and arrested him and ordered him to be bound with two chains. He inquired who he was and what he had done.  Some in the crowd were shouting one thing, some another. And as he could not learn the facts because of the uproar, he ordered him to be brought into the barracks.  And when he came to the steps, he was actually carried by the soldiers because of the violence of the crowd,  for the mob of the people followed, crying out, “Away with him!”
Paul Speaks to the People
 As Paul was about to be brought into the barracks, he said to the tribune, “May I say something to you?” And he said, “Do you know Greek?  Are you not the Egyptian, then, who recently stirred up a revolt and led the four thousand men of the Assassins out into the wilderness?”  Paul replied, “I am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no obscure city. I beg you, permit me to speak to the people.”  And when he had given him permission, Paul, standing on the steps, motioned with his hand to the people. And when there was a great hush, he addressed them in the Hebrew language, saying: (ESV)
 “Brothers and fathers, hear the defense that I now make before you.”
 And when they heard that he was addressing them in the Hebrew language, they became even more quiet. And he said:
 “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus in Cilicia, but brought up in this city, educated at the feet of Gamaliel according to the strict manner of the law of our fathers, being zealous for God as all of you are this day.  I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and delivering to prison both men and women,  as the high priest and the whole council of elders can bear me witness. From them I received letters to the brothers, and I journeyed toward Damascus to take those also who were there and bring them in bonds to Jerusalem to be punished.
 “As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me.  And I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’  And I answered, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And he said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’  Now those who were with me saw the light but did not understand the voice of the one who was speaking to me.  And I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’  And since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus.
 “And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there,  came to me, and standing by me said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight.’ And at that very hour I received my sight and saw him.  And he said, ‘The God of our fathers appointed you to know his will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from his mouth;  for you will be a witness for him to everyone of what you have seen and heard.  And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’
 “When I had returned to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple, I fell into a trance  and saw him saying to me, ‘Make haste and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about me.’  And I said, ‘Lord, they themselves know that in one synagogue after another I imprisoned and beat those who believed in you.  And when the blood of Stephen your witness was being shed, I myself was standing by and approving and watching over the garments of those who killed him.’  And he said to me, ‘Go, for I will send you far away to the Gentiles.’” (ESV)