Today’s Bible Reading

November 16

Old Testament I
2 Chronicles 7
2 Chronicles 7 begins with the completion of the construction of the temple by King Solomon. As the priests were bringing the ark of the covenant into the temple, the glory of the Lord filled the temple so much that the priests could not enter.

King Solomon then led a great assembly of people in offering sacrifices to the Lord. The people praised the Lord, saying that His mercy endures forever.

That night, the Lord appeared to Solomon and promised to hear the prayers of the people who would come to the temple and ask for forgiveness. However, the Lord warned that if the people turned away from Him and worshiped other gods, He would punish them severely.

Solomon finished his work on the temple and other royal buildings after twenty years. He then gave twenty cities to King Hiram of Tyre as a gift for his help in the construction of the temple.

In conclusion, 2 Chronicles 7 emphasizes the glory of the Lord filling the temple and the importance of following the Lord's commands in order to receive His blessings.

Old Testament II
Ezekiel 32
Ezekiel 32 is a prophecy against Egypt. The chapter begins with a lament for Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, who is likened to a great monster in the midst of the waters. The prophet describes how God will bring a sword against Egypt and its allies, and how their corpses will be scattered throughout the land. The lament for Pharaoh continues, with the prophet declaring that he will be brought down to Sheol, the underworld, and will be among the uncircumcised, the unrighteous dead.

The chapter then turns to a series of taunts against Egypt, as the prophet lists various nations that have fallen before them and how they too will be brought low. The chapter concludes with a message of comfort for the people of Israel, who have suffered at the hands of Egypt. The prophet declares that they will be restored to their land, and that God will be with them in their midst. The chapter ends with a reminder that God is sovereign over all nations, and that he will judge them according to their deeds.

New Testament
John 11:55 - 12:19
John 11:55-12:19 recounts events that took place just before Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead in Bethany, which was about two miles from Jerusalem. Many Jews had come to comfort Martha and Mary, Lazarus’s sisters, and had witnessed Jesus’ miraculous act. As a result, the religious leaders became increasingly concerned about Jesus’ growing popularity, which they saw as a threat to their power.

In anticipation of the Passover feast, many people were traveling to Jerusalem, and the crowds grew larger each day. Some of those who had witnessed Lazarus’ resurrection went to the Pharisees and told them what had happened. The religious leaders decided that Jesus must be stopped, and they issued orders for anyone who saw him to report it to them immediately.

Meanwhile, Jesus was staying in the village of Ephraim, a remote location about 12 miles from Jerusalem. He knew that his time on earth was drawing to a close, and he wanted to prepare his disciples for what lay ahead. He told them that he would soon be arrested, tried, and executed, but that his death would ultimately bring glory to God.

As the time for the Passover feast approached, Jesus and his disciples traveled to Bethany, where they were invited to a dinner hosted by Lazarus, Martha, and Mary. During the meal, Mary anointed Jesus’ feet with expensive perfume and wiped them with her hair, a gesture of deep love and devotion. Judas Iscariot, one of the disciples, objected to the extravagance, arguing that the perfume could have been sold and the money given to the poor. But Jesus rebuked him, saying that Mary had done a beautiful thing and that she had anointed him in preparation for his burial.

As news of Jesus’ presence in Bethany spread, a large crowd gathered to see him, and many people came to believe in him as the Messiah. The religious leaders, however, became even more determined to put an end to Jesus’ ministry, and they began to plot his arrest and execution.

Overall, this passage highlights the growing conflict between Jesus and the religious leaders, and the tension that was building as Jesus’ popularity continued to grow. It also demonstrates the deep love and devotion that some of Jesus’ followers had for him, even as others sought to betray him.