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Bible Reading Plan

Daily Bible Reading

December 29 - Bible-in-a-Year


Ezekiel 44-45

Chapter 44

The Priesthood Restored

1 Then the man brought me back to the outer gate of the sanctuary, the one facing east,(a) and it was shut. 2 The Lord said to me, "This gate is to remain shut. It must not be opened; no one may enter through it.(b) It is to remain shut because the Lord , the God of Israel, has entered through it. 3 The prince himself is the only one who may sit inside the gateway to eat in the presence(c) of the Lord . He is to enter by way of the portico of the gateway and go out the same way.(d)"

4 Then the man brought me by way of the north gate(e) to the front of the temple. I looked and saw the glory of the Lord filling the temple(f) of the Lord , and I fell facedown.(g)

5 The Lord said to me, "Son of man, look carefully, listen closely and give attention to everything I tell you concerning all the regulations and instructions regarding the temple of the Lord . Give attention to the entrance(h) to the temple and all the exits of the sanctuary.(i) 6 Say to rebellious Israel,(j) ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Enough of your detestable practices, people of Israel! 7 In addition to all your other detestable practices, you brought foreigners uncircumcised in heart(k) and flesh into my sanctuary, desecrating my temple while you offered me food, fat and blood, and you broke my covenant.(l) 8 Instead of carrying out your duty in regard to my holy things, you put others in charge of my sanctuary.(m) 9 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: No foreigner uncircumcised in heart and flesh is to enter my sanctuary, not even the foreigners who live among the Israelites.(n)

10 "‘The Levites who went far from me when Israel went astray(o) and who wandered from me after their idols must bear the consequences of their sin.(p) 11 They may serve in my sanctuary, having charge of the gates of the temple and serving in it; they may slaughter the burnt offerings(q) and sacrifices for the people and stand before the people and serve them.(r) 12 But because they served them in the presence of their idols and made the people of Israel fall(s) into sin, therefore I have sworn with uplifted hand(t) that they must bear the consequences of their sin, declares the Sovereign Lord .(u) 13 They are not to come near to serve me as priests or come near any of my holy things or my most holy offerings; they must bear the shame(v) of their detestable practices.(w) 14 And I will appoint them to guard the temple for all the work that is to be done in it.(x)

15 "‘But the Levitical priests, who are descendants of Zadok(y) and who guarded my sanctuary when the Israelites went astray from me, are to come near to minister before me; they are to stand before me to offer sacrifices of fat(z) and blood, declares the Sovereign Lord .(aa) 16 They alone are to enter my sanctuary; they alone are to come near my table(ab) to minister before me and serve me as guards.(ac)

17 "‘When they enter the gates of the inner court, they are to wear linen clothes;(ad) they must not wear any woolen garment while ministering at the gates of the inner court or inside the temple. 18 They are to wear linen turbans(ae) on their heads and linen undergarments(af) around their waists. They must not wear anything that makes them perspire.(ag) 19 When they go out into the outer court where the people are, they are to take off the clothes they have been ministering in and are to leave them in the sacred rooms, and put on other clothes, so that the people are not consecrated(ah) through contact with their garments.(ai)

20 "‘They must not shave(aj) their heads or let their hair grow long, but they are to keep the hair of their heads trimmed.(ak) 21 No priest is to drink wine when he enters the inner court.(al) 22 They must not marry widows or divorced women; they may marry only virgins of Israelite descent or widows of priests.(am) 23 They are to teach my people the difference between the holy and the common(an) and show them how to distinguish between the unclean and the clean.(ao)

24 "‘In any dispute, the priests are to serve as judges(ap) and decide it according to my ordinances. They are to keep my laws and my decrees for all my appointed festivals,(aq) and they are to keep my Sabbaths holy.(ar)

25 "‘A priest must not defile himself by going near a dead person; however, if the dead person was his father or mother, son or daughter, brother or unmarried sister, then he may defile himself.(as) 26 After he is cleansed, he must wait seven days.(at) 27 On the day he goes into the inner court of the sanctuary(au) to minister in the sanctuary, he is to offer a sin offering[a](av) for himself, declares the Sovereign Lord .

28 "‘I am to be the only inheritance(aw) the priests have. You are to give them no possession in Israel; I will be their possession. 29 They will eat(ax) the grain offerings, the sin offerings and the guilt offerings; and everything in Israel devoted[b] to the Lord (ay) will belong to them.(az) 30 The best of all the firstfruits(ba) and of all your special gifts will belong to the priests. You are to give them the first portion of your ground meal(bb) so that a blessing(bc) may rest on your household.(bd) 31 The priests must not eat anything, whether bird or animal, found dead(be) or torn by wild animals.(bf)

Chapter 45

Israel Fully Restored

1 "‘When you allot the land as an inheritance,(a) you are to present to the Lord a portion of the land as a sacred district, 25,000 cubits[a] long and 20,000[b] cubits[c] wide; the entire area will be holy.(b) 2 Of this, a section 500 cubits[d] square(c) is to be for the sanctuary, with 50 cubits[e] around it for open land. 3 In the sacred district, measure off a section 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 cubits[f] wide. In it will be the sanctuary, the Most Holy Place. 4 It will be the sacred portion of the land for the priests,(d) who minister in the sanctuary and who draw near to minister before the Lord . It will be a place for their houses as well as a holy place for the sanctuary.(e) 5 An area 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 cubits wide will belong to the Levites, who serve in the temple, as their possession for towns to live in.[g](f)

6 "‘You are to give the city as its property an area 5,000 cubits[h] wide and 25,000 cubits long, adjoining the sacred portion; it will belong to all Israel.(g)

7 "‘The prince will have the land bordering each side of the area formed by the sacred district and the property of the city. It will extend westward from the west side and eastward from the east side, running lengthwise from the western to the eastern border parallel to one of the tribal portions.(h) 8 This land will be his possession in Israel. And my princes will no longer oppress my people but will allow the people of Israel to possess the land according to their tribes.(i)

9 "‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: You have gone far enough, princes of Israel! Give up your violence and oppression(j) and do what is just and right.(k) Stop dispossessing my people, declares the Sovereign Lord . 10 You are to use accurate scales,(l) an accurate ephah[i](m) and an accurate bath.[j] 11 The ephah(n) and the bath are to be the same size, the bath containing a tenth of a homer and the ephah a tenth of a homer; the homer is to be the standard measure for both. 12 The shekel[k] is to consist of twenty gerahs.(o) Twenty shekels plus twenty-five shekels plus fifteen shekels equal one mina.[l]

13 "‘This is the special gift you are to offer: a sixth of an ephah[m] from each homer of wheat and a sixth of an ephah[n] from each homer of barley. 14 The prescribed portion of olive oil, measured by the bath, is a tenth of a bath[o] from each cor (which consists of ten baths or one homer, for ten baths are equivalent to a homer). 15 Also one sheep is to be taken from every flock of two hundred from the well-watered pastures of Israel. These will be used for the grain offerings, burnt offerings(p) and fellowship offerings to make atonement(q) for the people, declares the Sovereign Lord . 16 All the people of the land will be required to give this special offering to the prince in Israel. 17 It will be the duty of the prince to provide the burnt offerings, grain offerings and drink offerings at the festivals, the New Moons(r) and the Sabbaths(s)—at all the appointed festivals of Israel. He will provide the sin offerings,[p] grain offerings, burnt offerings and fellowship offerings to make atonement for the Israelites.(t)

18 "‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: In the first month(u) on the first day you are to take a young bull without defect(v) and purify the sanctuary.(w) 19 The priest is to take some of the blood of the sin offering and put it on the doorposts of the temple, on the four corners of the upper ledge(x) of the altar(y) and on the gateposts of the inner court. 20 You are to do the same on the seventh day of the month for anyone who sins unintentionally(z) or through ignorance; so you are to make atonement for the temple.

21 "‘In the first month on the fourteenth day you are to observe the Passover,(aa) a festival lasting seven days, during which you shall eat bread made without yeast. 22 On that day the prince is to provide a bull as a sin offering for himself and for all the people of the land.(ab) 23 Every day during the seven days of the festival he is to provide seven bulls and seven rams(ac) without defect as a burnt offering to the Lord , and a male goat for a sin offering.(ad) 24 He is to provide as a grain offering(ae) an ephah for each bull and an ephah for each ram, along with a hin[q] of olive oil for each ephah.(af)

25 "‘During the seven days of the festival,(ag) which begins in the seventh month on the fifteenth day, he is to make the same provision for sin offerings, burnt offerings, grain offerings and oil.(ah)

Isaiah 64

Chapter 64

1 [a]Oh, that you would rend the heavens(a) and come down,(b)
     that the mountains(c) would tremble before you!
2 As when fire sets twigs ablaze
     and causes water to boil,
come down to make your name(d) known to your enemies
     and cause the nations to quake(e) before you!
3 For when you did awesome(f) things that we did not expect,
     you came down, and the mountains trembled(g) before you.
4 Since ancient times no one has heard,
     no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen any God besides you,(h)
     who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.(i)
5 You come to the help of those who gladly do right,(j)
     who remember your ways.
But when we continued to sin against them,
     you were angry.(k)
     How then can we be saved?
6 All of us have become like one who is unclean,(l)
     and all our righteous(m) acts are like filthy rags;
we all shrivel up like a leaf,(n)
     and like the wind our sins sweep us away.(o)
7 No one(p) calls on your name(q)
     or strives to lay hold of you;
for you have hidden(r) your face from us
     and have given us over(s) to[b] our sins.

8 Yet you, Lord , are our Father.(t)
     We are the clay, you are the potter;(u)
     we are all the work of your hand.(v)
9 Do not be angry(w) beyond measure, Lord ;
     do not remember our sins(x) forever.
Oh, look on us, we pray,
     for we are all your people.(y)
10 Your sacred cities(z) have become a wasteland;
     even Zion is a wasteland, Jerusalem a desolation.(aa)
11 Our holy and glorious temple,(ab) where our ancestors praised you,
     has been burned with fire,
     and all that we treasured(ac) lies in ruins.
12 After all this, Lord , will you hold yourself back?(ad)
     Will you keep silent(ae) and punish us beyond measure?

Luke 4:1-30

Chapter 4

Jesus Is Tested in the Wilderness(a)

1 Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit,(b) left the Jordan(c) and was led by the Spirit(d) into the wilderness, 2 where for forty days(e) he was tempted[a] by the devil.(f) He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry.

3 The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God,(g) tell this stone to become bread."

4 Jesus answered, "It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.'[b]"(h)

5 The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world.(i) 6 And he said to him, "I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me,(j) and I can give it to anyone I want to. 7 If you worship me, it will all be yours."

8 Jesus answered, "It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.'[c]"(k)

9 The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. "If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down from here. 10 For it is written:

"‘He will command his angels concerning you
     to guard you carefully;
11 they will lift you up in their hands,
     so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'[d]"(l)

12 Jesus answered, "It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'[e]"(m)

13 When the devil had finished all this tempting,(n) he left him(o) until an opportune time.

Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

14 Jesus returned to Galilee(p) in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside.(q) 15 He was teaching in their synagogues,(r) and everyone praised him.

16 He went to Nazareth,(s) where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue,(t) as was his custom. He stood up to read,(u) 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18 "The Spirit of the Lord is on me,(v)
     because he has anointed me
     to proclaim good news(w) to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
     and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19       to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."[f](x)

20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down.(y) The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, "Today this scripture is fulfilled(z) in your hearing."

22 All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. "Isn't this Joseph's son?" they asked.(aa)

23 Jesus said to them, "Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself!' And you will tell me, ‘Do here in your hometown(ab) what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.'"(ac)

24 "Truly I tell you," he continued, "no prophet is accepted in his hometown.(ad) 25 I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah's time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land.(ae) 26 Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon.(af) 27 And there were many in Israel with leprosy[g] in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian."(ag)

28 All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. 29 They got up, drove him out of the town,(ah) and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. 30 But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.(ai)

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