MAY 23

Deuteronomy 1
Deuteronomy 1 is the beginning of Moses' speech to the Israelites before they enter the Promised Land. He reminds them of their journey from Egypt and how God had promised to give them the land. Moses encourages the Israelites to trust in God's promise and to be courageous as they conquer the land.

Moses also appoints leaders to help him govern the people and reminds them of their past failures, including the incident with the spies who were sent to explore the land. He warns them not to rebel against God and encourages them to listen to his commandments.

The main message of Deuteronomy 1 is the importance of obedience to God and trusting in his promises. Moses reminds the Israelites of their history and God's faithfulness to them, emphasizing the need for them to remain faithful to God as they enter the Promised Land.

Ecclesiastes 1:1 - 2:10 
The book of Ecclesiastes begins by introducing the author as "the Preacher," who is believed to be King Solomon. The Preacher reflects on the futility of life and the emptiness of human pursuits, noting that everything is meaningless and that there is nothing new under the sun.

The Preacher observes that people toil and strive for things that ultimately provide no lasting satisfaction or fulfillment. He tries to find meaning in wisdom, pleasure, and wealth, but finds that these things do not bring true happiness.

The Preacher also reflects on the inevitability of death and how it renders all human efforts ultimately meaningless. He notes that even the wisest and most successful individuals will eventually die and be forgotten.

Despite his observations about the emptiness of life, the Preacher does not despair or give up hope. He acknowledges that everything comes from God, and that finding true meaning and purpose in life requires a relationship with Him.

Overall, Ecclesiastes 1:1 - 2:10 presents a bleak and sobering view of life, but also points towards the possibility of finding meaning and purpose through faith in God.

Luke 6:1-19
Luke 6:1-19 begins with Jesus and his disciples walking through a grainfield on the Sabbath day. The Pharisees accuse Jesus of breaking the Sabbath law by allowing his disciples to pluck heads of grain and eat them. Jesus defends his actions by reminding them of the time when David ate the bread of the Presence, which was only for the priests, and how he was not condemned. He tells them that the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath and has the authority to interpret its laws.

On another Sabbath, Jesus enters the synagogue and sees a man with a withered hand. The Pharisees watch him to see if he will heal the man on the Sabbath, so they can accuse him of breaking the law. Jesus asks the man to stretch out his hand, and it is healed. He then rebukes the Pharisees for their legalistic approach to the Sabbath and their lack of compassion for the man.

Jesus then chooses twelve disciples from among his followers and names them apostles. He begins to teach them and a large crowd that has gathered about the blessings and woes of the kingdom of God. He tells them that the poor, hungry, and persecuted are blessed, while the rich, well-fed, and praised are warned of impending judgment.

He also teaches them the golden rule, to do to others what they would want others to do to them, and warns against hypocrisy and judging others. He tells them that a good tree bears good fruit and a bad tree bears bad fruit, and that they will be known by their fruits.

Finally, Luke lists the names of the twelve apostles and includes a description of Jesus healing a great multitude of people who had come to hear him and be healed of their diseases.