Today’s Bible Reading

July 25

Old Testament I
Judges 21
The book of Judges ends with a dark and troubling account of the events that took place after the tribe of Benjamin was almost wiped out by the other tribes of Israel for protecting a group of men who committed a horrific crime. The other tribes, realizing they had almost eradicated an entire tribe, were filled with remorse and decided to find wives for the remaining men of Benjamin so that their tribe would not die out.

However, they had sworn an oath not to give any of their daughters to the tribe of Benjamin. So they came up with a plan to capture the unmarried women who had danced at a festival in Shiloh and give them to the men of Benjamin. They advised the men of Benjamin to lie in wait in the vineyards and abduct the women when they came out to dance.

The men of Benjamin did as they were instructed, and the other tribes gave them the captured women as wives. However, there were not enough women for all the men of Benjamin, so they were advised to kidnap more women from a town called Jabesh Gilead. The other tribes gave their blessing to this plan, and the men of Benjamin were able to find wives for all their unmarried men.

The book of Judges ends with a poignant statement: "In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes." The book of Judges thus portrays a period of Israel's history characterized by moral and spiritual decline, social and political anarchy, and the desperate need for godly leadership.

Old Testament II
Isaiah 41:21 - 42:21
Isaiah 41:21 - 42:21 contains a message of hope and salvation for God's people. In this passage, the Lord speaks through the prophet Isaiah to remind the Israelites of His faithfulness and to encourage them to trust in Him alone.

Isaiah 41:21-29 begins with a challenge from the Lord to the nations to present their case and demonstrate their power. The Lord declares that He is the only true God, who knows and declares the future. He reminds Israel of His covenant with them and encourages them not to fear, for He is with them.

Isaiah 42:1-9 contains a prophecy about the coming of the Lord's servant, who is identified as Jesus Christ in the New Testament. The servant is described as gentle and compassionate, yet powerful and just. He will bring justice to the nations and be a light to the Gentiles.

Isaiah 42:10-17 is a song of praise and thanksgiving to the Lord for His salvation. The people of Israel are called to sing a new song, for the Lord has done marvelous things. The Lord declares that He will not forsake His people, but will lead them through the wilderness and bring them safely to their homeland.

Isaiah 42:18-25 is a rebuke to Israel for their disobedience and stubbornness. The Lord declares that He has poured out His wrath upon them, but He will not abandon them. He will bring them back from their exile and restore them to their land.

Overall, this passage emphasizes the faithfulness and power of the Lord, the coming of His servant, and the salvation of His people. It encourages trust in God, even in the midst of difficult times, and reminds us that His plans and purposes will ultimately prevail.

New Testament
1 Corinthians 16
1 Corinthians 16 is the final chapter of the first letter that the Apostle Paul wrote to the church in Corinth. In this chapter, Paul discusses a variety of topics, including collecting money for the poor, his travel plans, and final greetings.

Firstly, Paul talks about the collection for the poor in Jerusalem that he had previously mentioned in chapter 15. He instructs the Corinthians to set aside money on the first day of every week so that there won't be any need for collections when he arrives. He also encourages them to give generously, reminding them that they will receive blessings from God as a result.

Paul then discusses his own travel plans. He intends to stay in Ephesus until Pentecost, and then go to Macedonia before coming to Corinth. He may also spend the winter with them, depending on how things go. He encourages the Corinthians to be hospitable to other traveling believers and to respect those who have worked hard in ministry.

In closing, Paul gives some final instructions and greetings. He mentions Timothy, who is coming to them, and encourages them to treat him well. He also sends greetings from various people, including Aquila and Priscilla and the church in Asia. He ends with a reminder of his love for them and a prayer for God's grace to be with them all.