Daily Bible Readinghttp://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/2 Corinthians 9:6-15http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/274http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/274<div class="ExternalClassBDEB9CC4C93F45EBAFE46C1814F5E63D"><strong>Day of Thanksgiving</strong><br><br>The point is this&#58; the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work. As it is written,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; &quot;He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; his righteousness endures forever.&quot;<br> He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity, which will produce thanksgiving to God through us; for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God. Through the testing of this ministry you glorify God by your obedience to the confession of the gospel of Christ and by the generosity of your sharing with them and with all others, while they long for you and pray for you because of the surpassing grace of God that he has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!</div>11/27/2014John 5:19-40http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/273http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/273<div class="ExternalClass32C78E01475A46C7A1F659B5D2F0692D">Jesus said to them, &quot;Very truly, I tell you, the Son can do nothing on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise. The Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing; and he will show him greater works than these, so that you will be astonished. Indeed, just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whomever he wishes. The Father judges no one but has given all judgment to the Son, so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Anyone who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. Very truly, I tell you, anyone who hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life, and does not come under judgment, but has passed from death to life.<br> <br>Very truly, I tell you, the hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself; and he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. Do not be astonished at this; for the hour is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and will come out — those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.<br> <br>I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge; and my judgment is just, because I seek to do not my own will but the will of him who sent me.<br> <br>If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true. There is another who testifies on my behalf, and I know that his testimony to me is true. You sent messengers to John, and he testified to the truth. Not that I accept such human testimony, but I say these things so that you may be saved. He was a burning and shining lamp, and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light. But I have a testimony greater than John's. The works that the Father has given me to complete, the very works that I am doing, testify on my behalf that the Father has sent me. And the Father who sent me has himself testified on my behalf. You have never heard his voice or seen his form, and you do not have his word abiding in you, because you do not believe him whom he has sent.<br> <br>You search the scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that testify on my behalf. Yet you refuse to come to me to have life.</div>11/26/2014Psalm 7http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/272http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/272<div class="ExternalClass5C65E5EDF2D54A1E94FF1B790AEEF0DA">​O LORD my God, in you I take refuge;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; save me from all my pursuers, and deliver me,<br> or like a lion they will tear me apart;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; they will drag me away, with no one to rescue.<br> O LORD my God, if I have done this,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; if there is wrong in my hands,<br> if I have repaid my ally with harm<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; or plundered my foe without cause,<br> then let the enemy pursue and overtake me,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; trample my life to the ground,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and lay my soul in the dust.<br> Selah<br> <br>Rise up, O LORD, in your anger;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; lift yourself up against the fury of my enemies;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; awake, O my God; you have appointed a judgment.<br> Let the assembly of the peoples be gathered around you,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and over it take your seat on high.<br> The LORD judges the peoples;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; judge me, O LORD, according to my righteousness<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and according to the integrity that is in me.<br> O let the evil of the wicked come to an end,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; but establish the righteous,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; you who test the minds and hearts,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; O righteous God.<br> God is my shield,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who saves the upright in heart.<br> God is a righteous judge,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and a God who has indignation every day.<br> If one does not repent, God will whet his sword;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; he has bent and strung his bow;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; he has prepared his deadly weapons,<br> &#160; &#160;&#160;&#160;making his arrows fiery shafts.<br> See how they conceive evil,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and are pregnant with mischief,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and bring forth lies.<br> They make a pit, digging it out,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and fall into the hole that they have made.<br> Their mischief returns upon their own heads,<br> &#160; &#160;&#160;&#160;and on their own heads their violence descends.<br> I will give to the LORD the thanks due to his righteousness,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and sing praise to the name of the LORD, the Most High.</div>11/25/2014Esther 2:1-18http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/271http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/271<div class="ExternalClass37D818A1FF4B4043BD20AC2545212F68">​After these things, when the anger of King Ahasuerus had abated, he remembered Vashti and what she had done and what had been decreed against her. Then the king's servants who attended him said, &quot;Let beautiful young virgins be sought out for the king. And let the king appoint commissioners in all the provinces of his kingdom to gather all the beautiful young virgins to the harem in the citadel of Susa under custody of Hegai, the king's eunuch, who is in charge of the women; let their cosmetic treatments be given them. And let the girl who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti.&quot; This pleased the king, and he did so.<br><br> Now there was a Jew in the citadel of Susa whose name was Mordecai son of Jair son of Shimei son of Kish, a Benjaminite. Kish had been carried away from Jerusalem among the captives carried away with King Jeconiah of Judah, whom King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had carried away. Mordecai had brought up Hadassah, that is Esther, his cousin, for she had neither father nor mother; the girl was fair and beautiful, and when her father and her mother died, Mordecai adopted her as his own daughter. So when the king's order and his edict were proclaimed, and when many young women were gathered in the citadel of Susa in custody of Hegai, Esther also was taken into the king's palace and put in custody of Hegai, who had charge of the women. The girl pleased him and won his favor, and he quickly provided her with her cosmetic treatments and her portion of food, and with seven chosen maids from the king's palace, and advanced her and her maids to the best place in the harem. Esther did not reveal her people or kindred, for Mordecai had charged her not to tell. Every day Mordecai would walk around in front of the court of the harem, to learn how Esther was and how she fared.<br><br> The turn came for each girl to go in to King Ahasuerus, after being twelve months under the regulations for the women, since this was the regular period of their cosmetic treatment, six months with oil of myrrh and six months with perfumes and cosmetics for women. When the girl went in to the king she was given whatever she asked for to take with her from the harem to the king's palace. In the evening she went in; then in the morning she came back to the second harem in custody of Shaashgaz, the king's eunuch, who was in charge of the concubines; she did not go in to the king again, unless the king delighted in her and she was summoned by name.<br><br> When the turn came for Esther daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had adopted her as his own daughter, to go in to the king, she asked for nothing except what Hegai the king's eunuch, who had charge of the women, advised. Now Esther was admired by all who saw her. When Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus in his royal palace in the tenth month, which is the month of Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign, the king loved Esther more than all the other women; of all the virgins she won his favor and devotion, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti. Then the king gave a great banquet to all his officials and ministers — &quot;Esther's banquet.&quot; He also granted a holiday to the provinces, and gave gifts with royal liberality.<br></div>11/24/2014Ephesians 1:15-23http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/270http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/270<div class="ExternalClass72757EF6BAAB4E1E93369DC6035D3F43"><strong>Christ the King</strong><br><br> I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.<br></div>11/23/2014Isaiah 44:21-28http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/269http://elca.org/Faith/DailyBible/269<div class="ExternalClass8D732BBA1D554759B4E09EFE606B5229">​Remember these things, O Jacob,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and Israel, for you are my servant;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; I formed you, you are my servant;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; O Israel, you will not be forgotten by me.<br> I have swept away your transgressions like a cloud,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and your sins like mist;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; return to me, for I have redeemed you.<br> Sing, O heavens, for the LORD has done it;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; shout, O depths of the earth;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; break forth into singing, O mountains,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; O forest, and every tree in it!<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; For the LORD has redeemed Jacob,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and will be glorified in Israel.<br> Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who formed you in the womb&#58;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; I am the LORD, who made all things,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who alone stretched out the heavens,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who by myself spread out the earth;<br> who frustrates the omens of liars,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and makes fools of diviners;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who turns back the wise,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and makes their knowledge foolish;<br> who confirms the word of his servant,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and fulfills the prediction of his messengers;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; who says of Jerusalem, &quot;It shall be inhabited,&quot;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and of the cities of Judah, &quot;They shall be rebuilt,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and I will raise up their ruins&quot;;<br> who says to the deep, &quot;Be dry --<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; I will dry up your rivers&quot;;<br> who says of Cyrus, &quot;He is my shepherd,<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and he shall carry out all my purpose&quot;;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and who says of Jerusalem, &quot;It shall be rebuilt,&quot;<br> &#160;&#160;&#160;&#160; and of the temple, &quot;Your foundation shall be laid.&quot;<br></div>11/22/2014