Today’s Bible Reading

July 20

Old Testament I
Judges 14, 15
Judges 14 tells the story of Samson's marriage to a Philistine woman. Samson, a Nazirite, had desired a woman from the Philistine community, which was at odds with his heritage as an Israelite. Samson's parents were opposed to the match but eventually gave in. On the way to meet the woman, Samson killed a lion with his bare hands, which he later found contained honey in its carcass. This incident became the basis for a riddle he presented at his wedding feast, which was attended by thirty Philistine men. The riddle was eventually solved by the Philistine guests through deception, and Samson became angry and killed thirty Philistines to fulfill a bet he had made.

In Judges 15, Samson attempted to reconcile with his wife but discovered that she had been given to his best man as a wife. In response, Samson captured three hundred foxes and tied their tails together with torches between them, setting them loose to destroy the Philistines' crops. The Philistines retaliated by burning Samson's wife and father-in-law to death. Samson then killed many Philistines in retaliation, using only the jawbone of a donkey as a weapon. He cried out to the Lord for water, and God provided a spring for him to drink from. Samson judged Israel for twenty years.

Old Testament II
Isaiah 36:1 - 37:7
Isaiah 36:1 - 37:7 tells the story of King Hezekiah of Judah and his encounter with the Assyrian army led by the Rabshakeh, the chief officer of the Assyrian king, who comes to demand the surrender of Jerusalem.

In chapter 36, the Rabshakeh addresses the people of Jerusalem in Hebrew and tries to convince them to surrender by using fear tactics, claiming that their God cannot protect them from the Assyrian army. Hezekiah, upon hearing this, sends a message to the prophet Isaiah, asking for guidance and prayers.

In chapter 37, Isaiah tells Hezekiah that God will protect Jerusalem and that the Assyrian army will not succeed in their attack. Hezekiah then prays to God and asks for His help. God answers Hezekiah's prayer by sending an angel to destroy the Assyrian army, killing 185,000 soldiers overnight.

In conclusion, the passage highlights the power and faithfulness of God in protecting His people, even in the face of seemingly impossible odds. It also emphasizes the importance of trusting in God and seeking His guidance and protection in times of trouble.

New Testament
1 Corinthians 12
First Corinthians 12 discusses the importance of spiritual gifts and the unity of the church. Paul emphasizes that no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit. He notes that there are different gifts, but they all come from the same Spirit. The gifts are given for the common good, and everyone should use them to benefit others.

Paul then talks about the different gifts that are given, such as wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, and prophecy. He also mentions that not everyone has the same gift, but that every gift is important and necessary for the functioning of the body of Christ.

Paul also discusses the idea of the body of Christ, using the analogy of the human body. Just as a body has many parts that all work together, so too does the church have many members who all work together to serve God. No part of the body can say that it doesn't need another part, and the same is true for the members of the church. Each member has a unique role to play, and each is necessary for the overall health and functioning of the body.

Finally, Paul talks about the importance of love. He notes that even if someone has all the spiritual gifts, without love, they are nothing. Love is patient, kind, and always seeks the good of others. It is the foundation of all the other gifts and is essential for the unity of the church.