April 21 - Acts 8.26-40, Joshua 1-2 and Job 21

Sponsored by DailyBible Email

Philip and an Ethiopian Official

Acts 8 26The Lord's angel said to Philip, "Go south along the desert road that leads from Jerusalem to Gaza." 27So Philip left.
An important Ethiopian official happened to be going along that road in his chariot. He was the chief treasurer for Candace, the Queen of Ethiopia. The official had gone to Jerusalem to worship 28and was now on his way home. He was sitting in his chariot, reading the book of the prophet Isaiah.
29The Spirit told Philip to catch up with the chariot. 30Philip ran up close and heard the man reading aloud from the book of Isaiah. Philip asked him, "Do you understand what you are reading?"
31The official answered, "How can I understand unless someone helps me?" He then invited Philip to come up and sit beside him.
32The man was reading the passage that said,
"He was led like a sheep on its way to be killed.
He was silent as a lamb whose wool is being cut off,
and he did not say a word.
33He was treated like a nobody
and did not receive a fair trial.
How can he have children,
if his life is snatched away?"
34The official said to Philip, "Tell me, was the prophet talking about himself or about someone else?" 35So Philip began at this place in the Scriptures and explained the good news about Jesus.
36-37As they were going along the road, they came to a place where there was some water. The official said, "Look! Here is some water. Why can't I be baptized?" 38He ordered the chariot to stop. Then they both went down into the water, and Philip baptized him.
39After they had come out of the water, the Lord's Spirit took Philip away. The official never saw him again, but he was very happy as he went on his way.
40Philip later appeared in Azotus. He went from town to town, all the way to Caesarea, telling people about Jesus.

Joshua Becomes the Leader of Israel

Joshua 1 Moses, the LORD's servant, was dead. So the LORD spoke to Joshua son of Nun, who had been the assistant of Moses. The LORD said:
2My servant Moses is dead. Now you must lead Israel across the Jordan River into the land I'm giving to all of you. 3Wherever you go, I'll give you that land, as I promised Moses. 4It will reach from the Southern Desert to the Lebanon Mountains in the north, and to the northeast as far as the great Euphrates River. It will include the land of the Hittites, and the land from here at the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea on the west. 5Joshua, I will always be with you and help you as I helped Moses, and no one will ever be able to defeat you.
6-8Long ago I promised the ancestors of Israel that I would give this land to their descendants. So be strong and brave! Be careful to do everything my servant Moses taught you. Never stop reading The Book of the Law he gave you. Day and night you must think about what it says. If you obey it completely, you and Israel will be able to take this land.
9I've commanded you to be strong and brave. Don't ever be afraid or discouraged! I am the LORD your God, and I will be there to help you wherever you go.

The Eastern Tribes Promise To Help

10Joshua ordered the tribal leaders 11to go through the camp and tell everyone:
In a few days we will cross the Jordan River to take the land that the LORD our God is giving us. So fix as much food as you'll need for the march into the land.

12Joshua told the men of the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and East Manasseh:
13-14The LORD's servant Moses said that the LORD our God has given you land here on the east side of the Jordan River, where you could live in peace. Your wives and children and your animals can stay here in the land Moses gave you. But all of you that can serve in our army must pick up your weapons and lead the men of the other tribes across the Jordan River. They are your relatives, so you must help them 15conquer the land that the LORD is giving them. The LORD will give peace to them as he has given peace to you, and then you can come back and settle here in the land that Moses promised you.

16The men answered:
We'll cross the Jordan River and help our relatives. We'll fight anywhere you send us. 17-18If the LORD our God will help you as he helped Moses, and if you are strong and brave, we will obey you as we obeyed Moses. We'll even put to death anyone who rebels against you or refuses to obey you.

Rahab Helps the Israelite Spies

Joshua 2 Joshua chose two men as spies and sent them from their camp at Acacia with these instructions: "Go across the river and find out as much as you can about the whole region, especially about the town of Jericho."
The two spies left the Israelite camp at Acacia and went to Jericho, where they decided to spend the night at the house of a prostitute named Rahab.
2But someone found out about them and told the king of Jericho, "Some Israelite men came here tonight, and they are spies." 3-7So the king sent soldiers to Rahab's house to arrest the spies.
Meanwhile, Rahab had taken the men up to the flat roof of her house and had hidden them under some piles of flax plants that she had put there to dry.
The soldiers came to her door and demanded, "Let us have the men who are staying at your house. They are spies."
She answered, "Some men did come to my house, but I didn't know where they had come from. They left about sunset, just before it was time to close the town gate. I don't know where they were going, but if you hurry, maybe you can catch them."
The guards at the town gate let the soldiers leave Jericho, but they closed the gate again as soon as the soldiers went through. Then the soldiers headed toward the Jordan River to look for the spies at the place where people cross the river.
8Rahab went back up to her roof. The spies were still awake, so she told them:
9I know that the LORD has given Israel this land. Everyone shakes with fear because of you. 10We heard how the LORD dried up the Red Sea so you could leave Egypt. And we heard how you destroyed Sihon and Og, those two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River. 11We know that the LORD your God rules heaven and earth, and we've lost our courage and our will to fight.
12Please promise me in the LORD's name that you will be as kind to my family as I have been to you. Do something to show 13that you won't let your people kill my father and mother and my brothers and sisters and their families.

14"Rahab," the spies answered, "if you keep quiet about what we're doing, we promise to be kind to you when the LORD gives us this land. We pray that the LORD will kill us if we don't keep our promise!"
15Rahab's house was built into the town wall, and one of the windows in her house faced outside the wall. She gave the spies a rope, showed them the window, and said, "Use this rope to let yourselves down to the ground outside the wall. 16Then hide in the hills. The men who are looking for you won't be able to find you there. They'll give up and come back after a few days, and you can be on your way."
17-20The spies said:
You made us promise to let you and your family live. We will keep our promise, but you can't tell anyone why we were here. You must tie this red rope on your window when we attack, and your father and mother, your brothers, and everyone else in your family must be here with you. We'll take the blame if anyone who stays in this house gets hurt. But anyone who leaves your house will be killed, and it won't be our fault.

21"I'll do exactly what you said," Rahab promised. Then she sent them on their way and tied the red rope to the window.
22The spies hid in the hills for three days while the king's soldiers looked for them along the roads. As soon as the soldiers gave up and returned to Jericho, 23the two spies went down into the Jordan valley and crossed the river. They reported to Joshua and told him everything that had happened. 24"We're sure the LORD has given us the whole country," they said. "The people there shake with fear every time they think of us."

Job's Reply to Zophar

If You Want To Offer Comfort

Job 21 Job said:
2If you want to offer comfort, then listen to me.
3And when I have finished,
you can start your insults all over again.
4My complaint is against God; that's why I am impatient.
5Just looking at me is enough to make you sick,
6and the very thought of myself fills me with disgust.

7Why do evil people live so long and gain such power?
8Why are they allowed to see their children grow up?
9They have no worries at home,
and God never punishes them.
10Their cattle have lots of calves without ever losing one;
11their children play and dance safely by themselves.
12These people sing and celebrate
to the sound of tambourines, small harps, and flutes,
13and they are successful, without a worry,
until the day they die.

Leave Us Alone!

14Those who are evil say to God All-Powerful,
"Leave us alone! Don't bother us with your teachings.
15What do we gain from praying and worshiping you?
16We succeeded all on our own."
And so, I keep away from them and their evil schemes.

17How often does God become angry
and send disaster and darkness to punish sinners?
18How often does he strike them
like a windstorm that scatters straw?

19You say, "God will punish those sinners' children
in place of those sinners."
But I say, "Let him punish those sinners themselves
until they really feel it.
20Let God All-Powerful force them to drink
their own destruction from the cup of his anger.
21Because after they are dead,
they won't care what happens to their children."

Who Can Tell God What To Do?

22Who can tell God what to do?
He judges powerful rulers.
*23Some of us die prosperous, 24enjoying good health,
25while others die in poverty, having known only pain.
26But we all end up dead, beneath a blanket of worms.

27My friends, I know that you are plotting against me.
28You ask, "Where is the home of that important person
who does so much evil?"

29Everyone, near and far, agrees 30that those who do wrong
never suffer disaster, when God becomes angry.
31No one points out their sin or punishes them.
32Then at their funerals, they are highly praised;
33the earth welcomes them home, while crowds mourn.

34But empty, meaningless words
are the comfort you offer me.

Next Page

This reading is from The Holy Bible, Contemporary English Version, copyright © American Bible Society, 1995.

Click here to go to BibleNetUSA's main page

Click here to go to the main page of dailybibleclub.com

Copyright 2013 BibleNetUSA.  All rights reserved.  Email cev@dailybibleclub.com

These daily Bible readings from the Contemporary English Version (CEV) are published by BibleNetUSA.  The web site and BibleCard® designs are by iCreative.  BibleCard® images copyright iCreative.  All rights reserved.