April 2 - Matthew 25.31-46, Numbers 32-34 and Job 2
The Final JudgmentMatthew 2531"When the Son of Man comes as King and all the angels with him, he will sit on his royal throne, 32and the people of all the nations will be gathered before him. Then he will divide them into two groups, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33He will put the righteous people at his right and the others at his left. 34Then the King will say to the people on his right, 'Come, you that are blessed by my Father! Come and possess the kingdom which has been prepared for you ever since the creation of the world. 35I was hungry and you fed me, thirsty and you gave me a drink; I was a stranger and you received me in your homes, 36naked and you clothed me; I was sick and you took care of me, in prison and you visited me.' 37The righteous will then answer him, 'When, Lord, did we ever see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? 38When did we ever see you a stranger and welcome you in our homes, or naked and clothe you? 39When did we ever see you sick or in prison, and visit you?' 40The King will reply, 'I tell you, whenever you did this for one of the least important of these followers of mine, you did it for me!'
41"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Away from me, you that are under God's curse! Away to the eternal fire which has been prepared for the Devil and his angels! 42I was hungry but you would not feed me, thirsty but you would not give me a drink; 43I was a stranger but you would not welcome me in your homes, naked but you would not clothe me; I was sick and in prison but you would not take care of me.' 44Then they will answer him, 'When, Lord, did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and we would not help you?' 45The King will reply, 'I tell you, whenever you refused to help one of these least important ones, you refused to help me.' 46These, then, will be sent off to eternal punishment, but the righteous will go to eternal life."
The Tribes East of the Jordan
6Moses replied, "Do you want to stay here while the other Israelites go to war? 7How dare you try to discourage the people of Israel from crossing the Jordan into the land which the LORD has given them? 8That is what your fathers did when I sent them from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land. 9They went as far as Eshcol Valley and saw the land, but when they returned, they discouraged the people from entering the land which the LORD had given them. 10The LORD became angry that day and made a promise: 11'I swear that because they did not remain loyal to me, none of the men twenty years old or older who came out of Egypt will enter the land that I promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.' 12This included everyone, except Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite and Joshua son of Nun; they remained loyal to the LORD. 13The LORD became angry with the people and made them wander in the wilderness forty years until that whole generation that had displeased him was dead. 14And now you have taken your ancestors' place, a new generation of sinful people ready to bring down the fierce anger of the LORD on Israel again. 15If you people of Reuben and Gad refuse to follow him now, he will once again abandon all these people in the wilderness, and you will be responsible for their destruction."
16They approached Moses and said, "First, allow us to build stone enclosures here for our sheep and fortified towns for our dependents. 17Then we will be ready to go with the other Israelites into battle and lead the attack until we have settled them in the land that will be theirs. In the meantime, our dependents can live here in the fortified towns, safe from the people of this land. 18We will not return to our homes until all the other Israelites have taken possession of the land assigned to them. 19We will not take possession of any property among them on the other side of the Jordan, because we have received our share here east of the Jordan."
20Moses answered, "If you really mean what you say, then here in the presence of the LORD get ready to go into battle. 21All your fighting men are to cross the Jordan and under the command of the LORD they are to attack our enemies until the LORD defeats them 22and takes possession of the land. After that, you may return, because you will have fulfilled your obligation to the LORD and to the other Israelites. Then the LORD will acknowledge that this land east of the Jordan is yours. 23But if you do not keep your promise, I warn you that you will be sinning against the LORD. Make no mistake about it; you will be punished for your sin. 24So build your towns and the enclosures for your sheep, but do what you have promised!"
25The men of Gad and Reuben said, "Sir, we will do as you command. 26Our wives and children and our cattle and sheep will remain here in the towns of Gilead. 27But all of us are ready to go into battle under the LORD's command. We will cross the Jordan and fight, just as you have said."
28So Moses gave these commands to Eleazar, Joshua, and the other leaders of Israel: 29"If the men of Gad and Reuben cross the Jordan ready for battle at the LORD's command and if with their help you are able to conquer the land, then give them the land of Gilead as their property. 30But if they do not cross the Jordan and go into battle with you, they are to receive their share of the property in the land of Canaan, as you do."
31The men of Gad and Reuben answered, "Sir, we will do as the LORD has commanded. 32Under his command we will cross into the land of Canaan and go into battle, so that we can retain our property here east of the Jordan."
33So Moses assigned to the tribes of Gad and Reuben and to half the tribe of Manasseh all the territory of King Sihon of the Amorites and King Og of Bashan, including the towns and the country around them. 34The tribe of Gad rebuilt the fortified towns of Dibon, Ataroth, Aroer, 35Atroth Shophan, Jazer, Jogbehah, 36Beth Nimrah, and Beth Haran. 37The tribe of Reuben rebuilt Heshbon, Elealeh, Kiriathaim, 38Nebo, Baal Meon (this name was changed), and Sibmah. They gave new names to the towns they rebuilt.
39The clan of Machir son of Manasseh invaded the land of Gilead, occupied it, and drove out the Amorites who were there. 40So Moses gave Gilead to the clan of Machir, and they lived there. 41Jair, of the tribe of Manasseh, attacked and captured some villages and named them "Villages of Jair." 42Nobah attacked and captured Kenath and its villages, and he renamed it Nobah, after himself.
The Journey from Egypt to MoabNumbers 33 The following account gives the names of the places where the Israelites set up camp after they left Egypt in their tribes under the leadership of Moses and Aaron. 2At the command of the LORD, Moses wrote down the name of the place each time they set up camp.
3The people of Israel left Egypt on the fifteenth day of the first month of the year, the day after the first Passover. Under the LORD's protection they left the city of Rameses in full view of the Egyptians, 4who were burying the first-born sons that the LORD had killed. By doing this, the LORD showed that he was more powerful than the gods of Egypt.
5The people of Israel left Rameses and set up camp at Sukkoth. 6Their next camp was at Etham on the edge of the desert. 7From there they turned back to Pi Hahiroth, east of Baal Zephon, and camped near Migdol. 8They left Pi Hahiroth and passed through the Red Sea into the desert of Shur; after a three days' march they camped at Marah. 9From there they went to Elim, where they camped, because there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees there.
10They left Elim and camped near the Gulf of Suez. 11Their next camp was in the desert of Sin. 12Then they camped at Dophkah, 13and after that at Alush. 14Next was Rephidim, where there was no water for them to drink.
15-37From Rephidim to Mount Hor they set up camp at the following places: the Sinai Desert, Kibroth Hattaavah (or "Graves of Craving"), Hazeroth, Rithmah, Rimmon Perez, Libnah, Rissah, Kehelathah, Mount Shepher, Haradah, Makheloth, Tahath, Terah, Mithkah, Hashmonah, Moseroth, Bene Jaakan, Hor Haggidgad, Jotbathah, Abronah, Eziongeber, the wilderness of Zin (that is, Kadesh), and Mount Hor, at the edge of the land of Edom.
38-39At the command of the LORD, Aaron the priest climbed Mount Hor. At the age of 123 he died there on the first day of the fifth month of the fortieth year after the Israelites had left Egypt.
40The king of Arad in southern Canaan heard that the Israelites were coming.
41-49From Mount Hor to the plains of Moab the Israelites set up camp at the following places: Zalmonah, Punon, Oboth, the ruins of Abarim in the territory of Moab, Dibon Gad, Almon Diblathaim, the Abarim Mountains near Mount Nebo, and in the plains of Moab across the Jordan River from Jericho, between Beth Jeshimoth and Acacia Valley.
Instructions before Crossing the Jordan50There in the plains of Moab across the Jordan from Jericho the LORD gave Moses 51the following instructions for Israel: "When you cross the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 52you must drive out all the inhabitants of the land. Destroy all their stone and metal idols and all their places of worship. 53Occupy the land and settle in it, because I am giving it to you. 54Divide the land among the various tribes and clans by drawing lots, giving a large piece of property to a large clan and a small one to a small clan. 55But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land, those that are left will be as troublesome as splinters in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they will fight against you. 56If you do not drive them out, I will destroy you, as I planned to destroy them."
The Boundaries of the LandNumbers 34 The LORD gave Moses 2the following instructions for the people of Israel: "When you enter Canaan, the land which I am giving you, the borders of your territory will be as follows. 3The southern border will extend from the wilderness of Zin along the border of Edom. It will begin on the east at the southern end of the Dead Sea. 4Then it will turn southward toward Akrabbim Pass and continue on through Zin as far south as Kadesh Barnea. Then it will turn northwest to Hazar Addar and on to Azmon, 5where it will turn toward the valley at the border of Egypt and end at the Mediterranean.
6"The western border will be the Mediterranean Sea.
7"The northern border will follow a line from the Mediterranean to Mount Hor 8and from there to Hamath Pass. It will continue to Zedad 9and to Ziphron, and will end at Hazar Enan.
10"The eastern border will follow a line from Hazar Enan to Shepham. 11It will then go south to Harbel, east of Ain, and on to the hills on the eastern shore of Lake Galilee, 12then south along the Jordan River to the Dead Sea.
"These will be the four borders of your land."
13So Moses said to the Israelites, "This is the land that you will receive by drawing lots, the land that the LORD has assigned to the nine and one-half tribes. 14The tribes of Reuben and Gad and the eastern half of Manasseh have received their property, divided according to their families, 15on the eastern side of the Jordan, opposite Jericho."
The Leaders Responsible for Dividing the Land16The LORD said to Moses, 17"Eleazar the priest and Joshua son of Nun will divide the land for the people. 18Take also one leader from each tribe to help them divide it." 19-28These are the men the LORD chose:
Tribe --- Leader
29These are the men that the LORD assigned to divide the property for the people of Israel in the land of Canaan.
Satan Tests Job AgainJob 2 When the day came for the heavenly beings to appear before the LORD again, Satan was there among them. 2The LORD asked him, "Where have you been?"
Satan answered, "I have been walking here and there, roaming around the earth."
3"Did you notice my servant Job?" the LORD asked. "There is no one on earth as faithful and good as he is. He worships me and is careful not to do anything evil. You persuaded me to let you attack him for no reason at all, but Job is still as faithful as ever."
4Satan replied, "A person will give up everything in order to stay alive. 5But now suppose you hurt his body--he will curse you to your face!"
6So the LORD said to Satan, "All right, he is in your power, but you are not to kill him."
7Then Satan left the LORD's presence and made sores break out all over Job's body. 8Job went and sat by the garbage dump and took a piece of broken pottery to scrape his sores. 9His wife said to him, "You are still as faithful as ever, aren't you? Why don't you curse God and die?"
10Job answered, "You are talking nonsense! When God sends us something good, we welcome it. How can we complain when he sends us trouble?" Even in all this suffering Job said nothing against God.
Job's Friends Come11Three of Job's friends were Eliphaz, from the city of Teman, Bildad, from the land of Shuah, and Zophar, from the land of Naamah. When they heard how much Job had been suffering, they decided to go and comfort him. 12While they were still a long way off they saw Job, but did not recognize him. When they did, they began to weep and wail, tearing their clothes in grief and throwing dust into the air and on their heads. 13Then they sat there on the ground with him for seven days and nights without saying a word, because they saw how much he was suffering.
This reading is from The Holy
Bible, Today's English Version, Second Edition copyright © American
Bible Society, 1992;
Old Testament copyright © American Bible Society, 1976, 1992; New Testament © American Bible Society, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1992.
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