Bible Reading Plan

Daily Bible Reading

March 22 - Bible-in-a-Year


Numbers 13-14

Chapter 13

Exploring Canaan

1 The Lord said to Moses, 2 "Send some men to explore(a) the land of Canaan,(b) which I am giving to the Israelites.(c) From each ancestral tribe(d) send one of its leaders."

3 So at the Lord 's command Moses sent them out from the Desert of Paran. All of them were leaders of the Israelites.(e) 4 These are their names:

from the tribe of Reuben, Shammua son of Zakkur;

5 from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat son of Hori;

6 from the tribe of Judah, Caleb son of Jephunneh;(f)

7 from the tribe of Issachar, Igal son of Joseph;

8 from the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea son of Nun;(g)

9 from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti son of Raphu;

10 from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel son of Sodi;

11 from the tribe of Manasseh (a tribe of Joseph), Gaddi son of Susi;

12 from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel son of Gemalli;

13 from the tribe of Asher, Sethur son of Michael;

14 from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi son of Vophsi;

15 from the tribe of Gad, Geuel son of Maki.

16 These are the names of the men Moses sent to explore(h) the land. (Moses gave Hoshea son of Nun(i) the name Joshua.)(j)

17 When Moses sent them to explore Canaan,(k) he said, "Go up through the Negev(l) and on into the hill country.(m) 18 See what the land is like and whether the people who live there are strong or weak, few or many. 19 What kind of land do they live in? Is it good or bad? What kind of towns do they live in? Are they unwalled or fortified? 20 How is the soil? Is it fertile or poor? Are there trees in it or not? Do your best to bring back some of the fruit of the land.(n)" (It was the season for the first ripe grapes.)(o)

21 So they went up and explored the land from the Desert of Zin(p) as far as Rehob,(q) toward Lebo Hamath.(r) 22 They went up through the Negev and came to Hebron,(s) where Ahiman, Sheshai and Talmai,(t) the descendants of Anak,(u) lived. (Hebron had been built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.)(v) 23 When they reached the Valley of Eshkol,[a](w) they cut off a branch bearing a single cluster of grapes. Two of them carried it on a pole between them, along with some pomegranates(x) and figs.(y) 24 That place was called the Valley of Eshkol because of the cluster of grapes the Israelites cut off there. 25 At the end of forty days(z) they returned from exploring the land.(aa)

Report on the Exploration

26 They came back to Moses and Aaron and the whole Israelite community at Kadesh(ab) in the Desert of Paran.(ac) There they reported to them(ad) and to the whole assembly and showed them the fruit of the land.(ae) 27 They gave Moses this account: "We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey!(af) Here is its fruit.(ag) 28 But the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large.(ah) We even saw descendants of Anak(ai) there.(aj) 29 The Amalekites(ak) live in the Negev; the Hittites,(al) Jebusites(am) and Amorites(an) live in the hill country;(ao) and the Canaanites(ap) live near the sea and along the Jordan.(aq)"

30 Then Caleb(ar) silenced the people before Moses and said, "We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it."

31 But the men who had gone up with him said, "We can't attack those people; they are stronger than we are."(as) 32 And they spread among the Israelites a bad report(at) about the land they had explored. They said, "The land we explored devours(au) those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size.(av) 33 We saw the Nephilim(aw) there (the descendants of Anak(ax) come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers(ay) in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them."

Chapter 14

The People Rebel

1 That night all the members of the community raised their voices and wept aloud.(a) 2 All the Israelites grumbled(b) against Moses and Aaron, and the whole assembly said to them, "If only we had died in Egypt!(c) Or in this wilderness!(d) 3 Why is the Lord bringing us to this land only to let us fall by the sword?(e) Our wives and children(f) will be taken as plunder.(g) Wouldn't it be better for us to go back to Egypt?(h)" 4 And they said to each other, "We should choose a leader and go back to Egypt.(i)"

5 Then Moses and Aaron fell facedown(j) in front of the whole Israelite assembly(k) gathered there. 6 Joshua son of Nun(l) and Caleb son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land, tore their clothes(m) 7 and said to the entire Israelite assembly, "The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good.(n) 8 If the Lord is pleased with us,(o) he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey,(p) and will give it to us.(q) 9 Only do not rebel(r) against the Lord . And do not be afraid(s) of the people of the land,(t) because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the Lord is with(u) us.(v) Do not be afraid of them."(w)

10 But the whole assembly talked about stoning(x) them. Then the glory of the Lord (y) appeared at the tent of meeting to all the Israelites. 11 The Lord said to Moses, "How long will these people treat me with contempt?(z) How long will they refuse to believe in me,(aa) in spite of all the signs(ab) I have performed among them? 12 I will strike them down with a plague(ac) and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation(ad) greater and stronger than they."(ae)

13 Moses said to the Lord , "Then the Egyptians will hear about it! By your power you brought these people up from among them.(af) 14 And they will tell the inhabitants of this land about it. They have already heard(ag) that you, Lord , are with these people(ah) and that you, Lord , have been seen face to face,(ai) that your cloud stays over them,(aj) and that you go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.(ak) 15 If you put all these people to death, leaving none alive, the nations who have heard this report about you will say, 16 ‘The Lord was not able to bring these people into the land he promised them on oath,(al) so he slaughtered them in the wilderness.'(am)

17 "Now may the Lord's strength be displayed, just as you have declared: 18 ‘The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion.(an) Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.'(ao) 19 In accordance with your great love, forgive(ap) the sin of these people,(aq) just as you have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now."(ar)

20 The Lord replied, "I have forgiven them,(as) as you asked. 21 Nevertheless, as surely as I live(at) and as surely as the glory of the Lord (au) fills the whole earth,(av) 22 not one of those who saw my glory and the signs(aw) I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness but who disobeyed me and tested me ten times(ax) 23 not one of them will ever see the land I promised on oath(ay) to their ancestors. No one who has treated me with contempt(az) will ever see it.(ba) 24 But because my servant Caleb(bb) has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly,(bc) I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it.(bd) 25 Since the Amalekites(be) and the Canaanites(bf) are living in the valleys, turn(bg) back tomorrow and set out toward the desert along the route to the Red Sea.[a](bh)"

26 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron: 27 "How long will this wicked community grumble against me? I have heard the complaints of these grumbling Israelites.(bi) 28 So tell them, ‘As surely as I live,(bj) declares the Lord , I will do to you(bk) the very thing I heard you say: 29 In this wilderness your bodies will fall(bl)—every one of you twenty years old or more(bm) who was counted in the census(bn) and who has grumbled against me. 30 Not one of you will enter the land(bo) I swore with uplifted hand(bp) to make your home, except Caleb son of Jephunneh(bq) and Joshua son of Nun.(br) 31 As for your children that you said would be taken as plunder, I will bring them in to enjoy the land you have rejected.(bs) 32 But as for you, your bodies will fall(bt) in this wilderness. 33 Your children will be shepherds here for forty years,(bu) suffering for your unfaithfulness, until the last of your bodies lies in the wilderness. 34 For forty years(bv)—one year for each of the forty days you explored the land(bw)—you will suffer for your sins and know what it is like to have me against you.' 35 I, the Lord , have spoken, and I will surely do these things(bx) to this whole wicked community, which has banded together against me. They will meet their end in this wilderness; here they will die.(by)"

36 So the men Moses had sent(bz) to explore the land, who returned and made the whole community grumble(ca) against him by spreading a bad report(cb) about it— 37 these men who were responsible for spreading the bad report(cc) about the land were struck down and died of a plague(cd) before the Lord . 38 Of the men who went to explore the land,(ce) only Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh survived.(cf)

39 When Moses reported this(cg) to all the Israelites, they mourned(ch) bitterly. 40 Early the next morning they set out for the highest point in the hill country,(ci) saying, "Now we are ready to go up to the land the Lord promised. Surely we have sinned!(cj)"

41 But Moses said, "Why are you disobeying the Lord 's command? This will not succeed!(ck) 42 Do not go up, because the Lord is not with you. You will be defeated by your enemies,(cl) 43 for the Amalekites(cm) and the Canaanites(cn) will face you there. Because you have turned away from the Lord , he will not be with you(co) and you will fall by the sword."

44 Nevertheless, in their presumption they went up(cp) toward the highest point in the hill country, though neither Moses nor the ark of the Lord 's covenant moved from the camp.(cq) 45 Then the Amalekites and the Canaanites(cr) who lived in that hill country(cs) came down and attacked them and beat them down all the way to Hormah.(ct)

Ecclesiastes 9:1-12

Chapter 9

A Common Destiny for All

1 So I reflected on all this and concluded that the righteous and the wise and what they do are in God's hands, but no one knows whether love or hate awaits them.(a) 2 All share a common destiny—the righteous and the wicked, the good and the bad,[a] the clean and the unclean, those who offer sacrifices and those who do not.

As it is with the good,
     so with the sinful;
as it is with those who take oaths,
     so with those who are afraid to take them.(b)

3 This is the evil in everything that happens under the sun: The same destiny overtakes all.(c) The hearts of people, moreover, are full of evil and there is madness in their hearts while they live,(d) and afterward they join the dead.(e) 4 Anyone who is among the living has hope[b]—even a live dog is better off than a dead lion!

5 For the living know that they will die,
     but the dead know nothing;(f)
they have no further reward,
     and even their name(g) is forgotten.(h)
6 Their love, their hate
     and their jealousy have long since vanished;
never again will they have a part
     in anything that happens under the sun.(i)

7 Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine(j) with a joyful heart,(k) for God has already approved what you do. 8 Always be clothed in white,(l) and always anoint your head with oil. 9 Enjoy life with your wife,(m) whom you love, all the days of this meaningless life that God has given you under the sun—all your meaningless days. For this is your lot(n) in life and in your toilsome labor under the sun. 10 Whatever(o) your hand finds to do, do it with all your might,(p) for in the realm of the dead,(q) where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.(r)

11 I have seen something else under the sun:

The race is not to the swift
     or the battle to the strong,(s)
nor does food come to the wise(t)
     or wealth to the brilliant
     or favor to the learned;
but time and chance(u) happen to them all.(v)

12 Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come:

As fish are caught in a cruel net,
     or birds are taken in a snare,
so people are trapped by evil times(w)
     that fall unexpectedly upon them.(x)

Matthew 20:1-16

Chapter 20

The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard

1  "For the kingdom of heaven is like(a) a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard.(b) 2 He agreed to pay them a denarius[a] for the day and sent them into his vineyard.

3 "About nine in the morning he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4 He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.' 5 So they went.

"He went out again about noon and about three in the afternoon and did the same thing. 6 About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?'

7 "‘Because no one has hired us,' they answered.

"He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.'

8 "When evening came,(c) the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.'

9 "The workers who were hired about five in the afternoon came and each received a denarius. 10 So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius. 11 When they received it, they began to grumble(d) against the landowner. 12 ‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,' they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat(e) of the day.'

13 "But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend.(f) Didn't you agree to work for a denarius? 14 Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. 15 Don't I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?'(g)

16 "So the last will be first, and the first will be last."(h)

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