Day 193 – July 12, 2021

Wisdom of Sirach 6; Psalm 14, 15; Proverbs 2:17–23; Acts 17:1–15

Wisdom of Sirach 6

1 Do not be an enemy instead of a friend; For a bad name brings shame and disgrace, And a double-tongued sinner is of such a kind. 

2 Do not exalt yourself with your own counsel, Lest your soul be torn in pieces as by a bull.† 

3 You will devour your leaves and lose your fruit, And be left like a withered tree. 

4 An evil soul will destroy him who possesses it And make him an object of malignant joy to his enemies. 

Friendships

5 Pleasant speech will multiply his friends, And a gracious tongue will multiply many kind greetings.† 

6 Let those who live at peace with you be many, But let your counselors be one in a thousand. 

7 If you gain a friend, gain him in testing, And do not be in a hurry to trust him. 

8 For there is a friend who is such to his own advantage, But he will not remain beside you in the day of your affliction. 

9 There is also a friend who changes into an enemy And will reveal a quarrel to your disgrace. 

10 Again, there is a friend who is a companion at table, But will not stand by you in your day of trouble. 

11 Further, when you prosper, he will be like you And speak boldly to your servants; 

12 But if you are brought low, he will be against you, And will hide himself from your presence. 

13 Stay away from your enemies And hold onto your friends. 

14 A faithful friend is a strong shelter, And he who finds one finds a treasure. 

15 There is nothing that can take the place of a faithful friend, And there is no way to measure his worth. 

16 A faithful friend is a medicine of life, And those who fear the Lord will find him. 

17 He who fears the Lord guides his friendship rightly, Because as he is, so also is his neighbor. 

Instruction Brings Wisdom

18 My son, from your youth up, choose instruction, And you will find wisdom also into old age.† 

19 Come to her as one who plows and sows, And wait expectantly for her good fruits; For in her work you will labor a little while, Then you will quickly eat of her fruit. 

20 She is very harsh on the undisciplined And on the one who lacks the heart to continue with her.† 

21 She will be like a heavy stone of trial upon him, And he will not delay to throw her off. 

22 For wisdom is like her name and is not manifest to many. 

23 Listen, my son, and accept my judgment, And do not reject my advice. 

24 Put your feet into her fetters and your neck into her collar. 

25 Put your shoulder under her and carry her, And do not be angry with her bonds. 

26 Come to her with all your soul, And keep her ways with all your strength. 

27 Search for her and seek her out, And she will become known to you; And when you become self-controlled, do not let her go. 

28 For in the end you will find her rest, And she will turn to you in gladness. 

29 Then her fetters will be as a strong protection for you, And her collar a glorious robe. 

30 For there is a golden adornment upon her, And her bonds are a blue thread. 

31 You will wear her as a glorious robe And put her on yourself as a crown of exceeding joy. 

32 If you are willing, my son, you will be taught, And if you apply yourself, you will be prudent.† 

33 If you love to listen, you will wait with anticipation, And if you incline your ear, you will be wise. 

34 Stand in an assembly of elders, And who is wise? Attach yourself to him. 

35 Desire to listen to every divine narrative, And do not let proverbs of understanding escape you. 

36 If you see a man who has understanding, Rise early in the morning And let your foot wear out the threshold of his door. 

37 Set your mind on the ordinances of the Lord And practice His commandments. He will strengthen your heart continually, And the desire for wisdom will be given to you.

Psalms 14

1 A psalm by David. †O Lord, who shall dwell in Your tabernacle? Who shall live in Your holy mountain? 

2 He who walks blamelessly, and works righteousness, And speaks truth in his heart, 

3 Who does not deceive with his tongue, Neither does evil to his neighbor; And does not find fault with those nearest him. 

4 He disdains those who do evil in his presence, But he holds in honor those who fear the Lord; He swears an oath to his neighbor and does not set it aside. 

5 He does not lend his money at interest, And he does not take a bribe against the innocent. 

6 He who does these things shall never be shaken.

Psalms 15

1 A pillar inscription; by David. †Preserve me, O Lord, because I hope in You. 

2 I said to the Lord, “You are my Lord; You have no need of my good things.” 

3 To the saints on His earth, In them He magnified all His will. 

4 Their diseases were multiplied; They hastened after these things; I will not join in their assemblies of blood, nor will I remember their names with my lips. 

5 The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You are He who restores my inheritance to me. 

6 Portions fell to me among the best, And my inheritance is the very finest. 

7 I will bless the Lord who caused me to understand; Moreover, until night my reins also instructed me. 

8 I saw the Lord always before me; Because He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken. 

9 Therefore my heart was glad, And my tongue rejoiced exceedingly; My flesh also shall dwell in hope. 

10 For You will not abandon my soul to Hades Nor allow Your Holy One to see corruption. 

11 You made known to me the ways of life; You will fill me with gladness in Your presence; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Proverbs of Solomon 2

17 My son, do not lay hold of evil counsel, Nor forsake the teaching of your youth And forget the divine covenant; 

18 For it establishes its house with death, And its paths beside Hades with the dead; 

19 All who journey there do not return, Nor do they lay hold of straight paths; For they do not comprehend the years of life. 

20 For if they walked in good paths, They would find the smooth paths of righteousness. 

21 The inhabitants of the land will be good, And the simple will be left in it; 

22 For the upright will dwell in the land, And the holy will be left in it. 

23 The ways of the ungodly shall perish from the land, And the lawless shall be banished from it.

Acts 17

The Church in Thessalonica

1 Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.†

2 Then Paul, as his custom was, went in to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures,†

3 explaining and demonstrating that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, “This Jesus whom I preach to you is the Christ.”

4 And some of them were persuaded; and a great multitude of the devout Greeks, and not a few of the leading women, joined Paul and Silas.†

5 But the Jews who were not persuaded, becoming envious, took some of the evil men from the marketplace, and gathering a mob, set all the city in an uproar and attacked the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people.

6 But when they did not find them, they dragged Jason and some brethren to the rulers of the city, crying out, “These who have turned the world upside down have come here too.

7 Jason has harbored them, and these are all acting contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying there is another king—Jesus.”†

8 And they troubled the crowd and the rulers of the city when they heard these things.

9 So when they had taken security from Jason and the rest, they let them go.†

The Church in Berea

10 Then the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea. When they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.

11 These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.

12 Therefore many of them believed, and also not a few of the Greeks, prominent women as well as men.

13 But when the Jews from Thessalonica learned that the word of God was preached by Paul at Berea, they came there also and stirred up the crowds.†

14 Then immediately the brethren sent Paul away, to go to the sea; but both Silas and Timothy remained there.†

15 So those who conducted Paul brought him to Athens; and receiving a command for Silas and Timothy to come to him with all speed, they departed.

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