Day 301 – Malachi 1-3; Psalm 101:1–15; Proverbs 21:16–20; 2 Timothy 1

Malachi 1-3

1 The burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by the hand of His messenger Malachi. Take it to heart!
2 “I have loved you,” says the Lord. “But you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’ Was not Esau the brother of Jacob?” says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved, 3 but Esau I have hated, and I have appointed his borders for destruction and made his heritage as dwellings of the wilderness.” 4 Because one will say, “Edom has been destroyed, but let us return and rebuild the desolate places,” thus says the Lord, Ruler of all: “They may build, but I will throw down. They shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, and the people against whom the Lord has placed Himself forever. 5 Your eyes will see, and you will say, ‘The Lord is magnified beyond the borders of Israel.’
Defiled Offerings
6 “A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If then, I am the Father, where is My honor? And if I am a Master, where is the reverence due to me?” says the Lord Almighty. “You priests are the ones who disparage My name, yet you say, ‘In what way have we disparaged Your name?’ 7 You offer defiled bread on My altar, but you say, ‘How have we defiled You?’ By saying, ‘The table of the Lord is contemptible and the food placed upon it is contemptible.’ 8 And when you offer the blind as a sacrifice, is that not evil? And when you offer the lame and sick, is that not evil? Offer it then to your ruler! See if he will accept it, if he will accept it favorably,” says the Lord Almighty.
9 “But now earnestly entreat the face of your God and pray to Him. These things have been done by your hands; shall I accept these from you?” says the Lord Almighty. 10 “For this reason, even among you the doors will be shut, and you will not burn an offering on My altar. I have no pleasure in you,” says the Lord Almighty, “nor will I accept an offering from your hands. 11 For from the rising of the sun even to its going down, My name has been glorified among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered to My name, and a pure offering, for My name shall be great among the Gentiles,” says the Lord Almighty. 12 “But you profane it in that you say, ‘The table of the Lord is defiled; and the food placed upon it is contemptible.’ 13 And you said, ‘Oh, what a weariness!’ And I have blown these away,” says the Lord Almighty. “And you bring prey, the lame, and the sick, and when you bring an offering, should I accept these from your hands?” says the Lord Almighty. 14 “But cursed be the man who is able, who has in his flock a male, and takes a vow but sacrifices to the Lord what is blemished—for I am a great King,” says the Lord Almighty, “and My name is glorious among the nations.
Contemptible Priests
1 “And now, O priests, this commandment is for you. 2 If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the Lord Almighty, “I will send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessing; indeed I will curse it, and I will scatter your blessing, and you will have it no more because you do not take this to heart. 3 Behold, I am turning my back on you, and I will smear dung on your faces, the dung of your feasts, and I will carry you away at the same time. 4 Then you will know that I have sent this commandment to you, that My covenant is with the sons of Levi,” says the Lord Almighty.
5 “My covenant of life and peace was with him, and I gave this to him that he might reverently fear Me, that he might be established before My name. 6 The law of truth was in his mouth, and injustice was not found on his lips. He walked with Me in peace and equity, and turned many away from lawlessness. 7 For the lips of a priest should keep knowledge, and people should seek the law from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the Lord Almighty.
8 “But you have departed from the way; you weakened many in the law and corrupted the covenant of Levi,” says the Lord Almighty. 9 “Therefore I also made you contemptible and disregarded before all nations, because you have not guarded My ways but have shown partiality in the law.”
10 Did not one God create you? Do you not all have one father? Why, then, does each of you forsake his brother to profane the covenant of your fathers? 11 Judah was forsaken, and an abomination has occurred in Israel and in Jerusalem, for Judah profaned the holy things of the Lord, which He loved, and sought out foreign gods. 12 The Lord will destroy the man who does these things until he is humiliated from the tents of Jacob and from among those who offer sacrifice to the Lord Almighty.
The Tragedy of Divorce
13 And you do these things which I hate. You cover the altar of the Lord with tears, with weeping and moaning because of troubles, yet still thinking it is worthy to look upon your sacrifice or take it as acceptable from your hands. 14 And you say, “Why?” Because the Lord has been witness between you and the wife of your youth, whom you have forsaken; yet she is your companion and the wife of your covenant. 15 But did He not make another, having a remnant of His Spirit? Yet you ask, “What else does God seek but offspring?” But take heed to your spirit, and do not forsake the wife of your youth. 16 “But if you hate her and send her away,” says the Lord God of Israel, “ungodliness will obscure your thinking,” says the Lord Almighty. “So take heed to your spirit, that you do not forsake her.” 17 You weary the Lord with your words, yet you say, “In what way have we wearied Him?” In that you say, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and He delights in them,” or, “Where is the God of justice?”
Messenger of the Covenant
1 “Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come into His temple, even the Messenger of the covenant, whom you desire. Behold, He is coming,” says the Lord Almighty. 2 “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can withstand His appearance? For He enters like a refiner’s fire and as soap in one’s wash. 3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver and gold. He will purify the sons of Levi and pour them out as purified gold and silver, and they will bring an offering to the Lord in righteousness. 4 Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord, as in the days of old, as in former years.
5 “And I will draw near to you in judgment, a swift witness against sorcerers, adulterers, those who swear falsely by My name, those who exploit wage-earners, those who oppress widows and afflict orphans, those who pervert the justice due foreigners, and those who do not fear Me,” says the Lord Almighty. 6 “For I am the Lord your God; I have not changed. But you, O sons of Jacob, have not abstained 7 from the sins of your fathers. You have turned away from My ordinances and have not kept them.
Tithing Brings God’s Blessing
“Return to Me and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty. “But you say, ‘In what way shall we return?’ 8 Will a man insult God? Yet you have insulted Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we insulted You?’ You kept back your tithes and offerings. 9 You most certainly turned your back on Me, you and the whole nation, and you insulted Me. 10 You brought all the produce into the storehouses—but it will be plundered in its house. Return now in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not open for you the floodgates of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it is overflowing. 11 And I shall send it to you for food and I will not destroy the fruit of your ground, nor will the vine in the field fail to bear fruit,” says the Lord Almighty. 12 “And all nations will call you blessed, for you will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty.
13 “You spoke harsh words against Me,” says the Lord, “yet you say, ‘What have we spoken against You?’ 14 You have said, ‘One who serves God is foolish; what profit have we from keeping His ordinances, and why do we go as suppliants before the face of the Lord Almighty? 15 And now we call foreigners blessed, and those doing lawless deeds are raised up—they even oppose God and go free.’”
16 Then those who feared the Lord spoke these things each to his neighbor, and the Lord listened and heard them, and He wrote a book of remembrance before His face for those who feared the Lord and reverenced His name. 17 “They shall be mine,” says the Lord Almighty, “in the day that I make them My possession, and I will choose them as a man chooses his own son who serves him. 18 Then you shall return, and you will discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him.
The Day of the Lord
19 “For behold, the day of the Lord is coming, burning like an oven. And it will burn them up, and it shall be that all foreigners and all who do wickedly will be stubble; and the day that is coming shall burn them up,” says the Lord Almighty, “and neither root nor branch will be left of them. 20 But to you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings, and you shall go forth leaping as little calves released from their bonds. 21 You shall trample the wicked, for they shall be ashes under your feet on the day I do this,” says the Lord Almighty. 22 “Behold, I will send you Elijah before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 23 And he will turn the heart of the father to his son, and a man’s heart to his neighbor, lest I come and strike the earth completely. 24 Be in remembrance of the Law of Moses My servant as I commanded him, with its statutes and judgments, at Horeb for all Israel.”

Psalm 101:1–15

1 A prayer by a poor man, when he was depressed and poured out his supplication before the Lord.
2 Hear my prayer, O Lord,
And let my cry come to You.
3 Do not turn Your face from me;
In the day when I am afflicted, incline Your ear to me;
In the day when I call upon You, hear me quickly.
4 For my days vanished like smoke,
And my bones burned up like firewood.
5 I was cut down like grass, and my heart became withered,
For I forgot to eat my bread.
6 Because of the sound of my groaning,
My bones cleaved to my flesh.
7 I have become like a pelican in a desert;
I have become like an owl in a ruined house;
8 I kept watch, and have become
Like a sparrow alone on a housetop.
9 My enemies reproached me all day long,
And those who praised me swore against me.
10 For I ate ashes like bread,
And mixed my drink with weeping
11 Because of the wrath of Your countenance and Your anger;
For You lifted me up and broke me down.
12 My days were far spent like a shadow,
And I am withered like grass.
13 But You, O Lord, remain forever,
And Your remembrance is from generation to generation.
14 When You rise up, You shall have compassion on Zion,
For it is time to have compassion on her, because the time is come;
15 For Your servants took pleasure in her stones,
And they shall have compassion for her dust.

Proverbs 21:16–20

16 A man in need loves merriment,
Loving wine and oil as wealth.
17 A lawless man is the outcast of a righteous man.
18 It is better to live in a desert
Than with a contentious, talkative, and quick-tempered woman.
19 A treasury of desire will rest upon the mouth of a wise man,
But men without discernment shall swallow it.
20 The way of righteousness and mercy shall find life and glory.

2 Timothy 1

1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus,
2 To Timothy, a beloved son:
Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.
Timothy’s Faith and Heritage
3 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day,
4 greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy,
5 when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.
6 Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.
7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Not Ashamed of the Gospel
8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God,
9 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
10 but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel,
11 to which I was appointed a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.
12 For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
Be Loyal to the Faith
13 Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.
14 That good thing which was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.
15 This you know, that all those in Asia have turned away from me, among whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.
16 The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain;
17 but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me.
18 The Lord grant to him that he may find mercy from the Lord in that Day—and you know very well how many ways he ministered to me at Ephesus.

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