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THE BURNING BUSH (detail from)



Number 3

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  1. "For we know that all creation keeps on groaning together and being in pain together until now."

  2. "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."

  3. "O man of little faith, why were you in doubt?"

  4. "But we are not of [the ones] shrinking back to destruction, but of [the ones having] faith to [the] preserving of [the] soul."

  5. "So my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable. Devote yourselves fully at all times to the Lord's work, realizing that your toil in the Lord can never be in vain!"

  6. "For God is not unjust, to forget your work and the love you have displayed toward his name in the services you have rendered and are rendering to his people."

  7. "My father, you have opened your mouth to Jehovah. Do to me whatever has gone out of your mouth, since Jehovah has taken vengeance for you on your enemies, on the sons of Ammon. Let this thing be done to me. Leave me alone two months, and let me go and descend on the mountains. And I will weep for my virginity, my friends and I."

  8. "When you vow a vow to God, pay it without delay (for the vows of fools displease him). Pay your vow; better not vow at all than vow and fail to pay."

  9. "Look, brothers, at the circumstances of your call. Not many of you were wise as men count wisdom, not many of high rank, not many of good birth. On the contrary, God chose the world's 'simple' to shame its 'wise,' the world's 'weak' to shame its 'strong'; God chose the world's 'vulgar and contemptible,' its 'flat nonentities' to abase its 'rank and state'; and thus made it clear to frail humanity that its pride shall not commend it in the sight of God."

  10. "I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you concealed these things from the sophisticated and educated and revealed them to ordinary folks. Yes, Father, I thank you that it pleased you to do this."

  11. "There is only one Lawgiver and Judge—the one who can save and destroy. So who are you to judge your neighbor?"

  12. "For Jehovah is our judge, Jehovah is our lawgiver, Jehovah is our king; he will save us."

  13. "Therefore, the person who thinks he is standing securely should watch out that he does not fall."

  14. "Keep watching and praying so that you do not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed [is] willing [or, eager], but the flesh [is] weak."

  15. "Does our Law condemn anyone without first hearing what he has to say and finding out what he's doing?"

  16. "But I told them that we Romans are not in the habit of handing over any who are accused of a crime before they have met their accusers face-to-face and have had the chance of defending themselves against the accusation."

  17. "Sovereign Lord Jehovah, remember me, please, and strengthen me, please, just this once, O you the [true] God, and let me avenge myself upon the Philistines with vengeance for one of my two eyes."

  18. "But you, O Jehovah of armies, are examining the righteous one; you are seeing the kidneys and the heart. May I see your vengeance upon them, for to you I have revealed my case at law."

  19. "See how I lay in Zion
    a stone of witness,
    a precious cornerstone, a foundation stone:
    The believer shall not stumble.
    And I will make justice the measure,
    integrity the plumb-line."

  20. "This is the Stone that is being scorned by you builders, which is becoming the head of the corner. And there is no salvation in any other one, for neither is there any other name, given under heaven among men, in which we must be saved."

  21. "Jehovah, Jehovah, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness and truth, keeping lovingkindness for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin; and that will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, upon the third and upon the fourth generation."

  22. "For I shall declare the name of Jehovah.
        Do YOU attribute greatness to our God!
    The Rock, perfect is his activity,
        For all his ways are justice.
    A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice;
        Righteous and upright is he."

  23. "Cursed be the man that shall eat food till evening, till I be revenged of my enemies."

  24. "My father has brought trouble on the people. See for yourselves how my eyes lit up when I tasted that bit of honey. If only the troops had eaten today of spoil captured from the enemy, the defeat of the Philistines would have been greater still!"

  25. "But be certain of this, that if the master of the house had had knowledge of the time when the thief was coming, he would have been watching, and would not have let his house be broken into. Be ready then; for at a time which you have no thought of the Son of man will come."

  26. "Now as for the times and the seasons, brothers, YOU need nothing to be written to YOU. For YOU yourselves know quite well that Jehovah's day is coming exactly as a thief in the night. Whenever it is that they are saying: "Peace and security!" then sudden destruction is to be instantly upon them just as the pang of distress upon a pregnant woman; and they will by no means escape. But YOU, brothers, YOU are not in darkness, so that that day should overtake YOU as it would thieves, for YOU are all sons of light and sons of day."

  27. "And as you saw the feet and toes, part of potters' [burned] clay and part of iron, it shall be a divided kingdom; but there shall be in it some of the firmness and strength of iron, just as you saw the iron mixed with miry [earthenware] clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron and part of [burned, potter's] clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly brittle and broken. And as you saw the iron mixed with miry and earthenware clay, so they shall mingle themselves in the seed of men [in marriage bonds]; but they will not hold together [for two such elements or idealogies can never harmonize], even as iron does not mingle itself with clay."

  28. "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not survive."

  29. "A thousand years to you are like one day; they are like yesterday, already gone, like a short hour in the night."

  30. "However, let this one fact not be escaping YOUR notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day."

  31. "Put away the foreign gods that are among you, purify yourselves, and change your garments; then let us arise and go up to Bethel that I may make there an altar to The [One True] God who answered me in the day of my distress and continued to be with me in the way which I went."

  32. "And YOU must be very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses by never turning away from it to the right or to the left, by never going in among these nations, these that remain with YOU. And YOU must not mention the names of their gods nor swear by them, neither must YOU serve them nor bow down to them. But it is to Jehovah YOUR God that YOU should cleave, just as YOU have done down to this day."

  33. "Consequently, then, each of us shall be giving account concerning himself to God."

  34. "I tell you that men will have to answer at the day of judgment for every careless word they utter—for it is your words that will acquit you, and your words that will condemn you!"

  35. "As your sword has bereaved women of children, so shall your mother be bereft among women."

  36. "When you finish telling the king everything that has happened, he may get angry and ask, 'Why did you go so near the city to fight? Didn't you know they would shoot arrows from the wall? Don't you know how Abimelech the son of Gideon was killed at Thebez? Didn't a woman kill him by dropping a large rock from the top of the city wall? Why did you go so close to the city walls?' Then you tell him, 'One of your soldiers who was killed was Uriah the Hittite.'"

  37. "Make it your aim to live a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to earn your own living, just as we told you before."

  38. "Let the stealer steal no more, but rather let him toil, working what is honest with his hands, that he may have to distribute to him that has need."

  39. "The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon has another kind of splendor, and the stars have still another kind of splendor. Even one star differs in splendor from another star."

  40. "When I see your heavens, the works of your fingers,
        The moon and the stars that you have prepared,
    What is mortal man that you keep him in mind,
        And the son of earthling man that you take care of him?"

  41. "God has put your enemy within your power this time for sure. Let me go and put that spear through him. I'll pin him to the earth with it—I'll not need to strike a second time!"

  42. "As Jehovah is living, Jehovah himself will deal him a blow; or his day will come and he will have to die, or down into battle he will go, and he will certainly be swept away. It is unthinkable, on my part, from Jehovah's standpoint, to thrust my hand out against the anointed of Jehovah!"

  43. "And I saw another angel flying in mid-heaven, having an everlasting gospel to proclaim to those dwelling on the earth, even to every nation and tribe and tongue and people."

  44. "Also, in all the nations the good news has to be preached first."

  45. "If I go on preaching the Good News, that is nothing for me to boast of; for the necessity is imposed upon me; and alas for me, if I fail to preach it!"

  46. "I say to myself, I will not mention him.
        I will speak in his name no more.
    But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,
        imprisoned in my bones:
    I grow weary holding it in,
        I cannot endure it."

  47. "All that your hand finds to do, do with your very power, for there is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheol, the place to which you are going."

  48. "There the wicked cease from turmoil, and there the weary are at rest; the prisoners are at ease together, they hear not the voice of the slave driver; the small and the great, he is there, and the slave free from his master."

  49. "After all, the same fate awaits human beings and animals alike. One dies just like the other. They are the same kind of creature. A human being is no better off than an animal, because life has no meaning for either. They are both going to the same place—the dust. They both came from it; they will both go back to it."

  50. "For it is not Sheol that praises you,
    Not [the Land of] Death that extols You;
    Nor do they who descend into the Pit
    Hope for Your grace.
    The living, only the living
    Can give thanks to You
    As I do this day."

  51. "If an able-bodied man dies can he live again?
    All the days of my compulsory service I shall wait,
    Until my relief comes.
    You will call, and I myself shall answer you.
    For the work of your hands you will have a yearning."

  52. "Why should it be thought a thing incredible that God should raise the dead?"

  53. "Do not marvel at this, because the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgment."

  54. "And having a hope directed towards God, which my accusers themselves also entertain, that before long there will be a resurrection both of the righteous and the unrighteous."

  55. "Quick, please, give me a swallow of the red—the red there, for I am tired!"

  56. "See to it that no one is guilty of sexual immorality, or lost to all religious feeling, as Esau was, for he sold his birthright for a single meal."

  57. "For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and does not go back again, but gives water to the earth, and makes it fertile, giving seed to the planter, and bread for food; So will my word be which goes out of my mouth: it will not come back to me with nothing done, but it will give effect to my purpose, and do that for which I have sent it."

  58. "And, behold! Today I am going in the way of all the earth, and you know with all your heart and with all your soul that there has not failed one thing of all the good things which Jehovah your God has spoken concerning you; all of it has come to you; there has not one thing failed of it."

  59. "In the morning sow your seed, And in the evening don't withhold your hand; For you don't know which will prosper, whether this or that, Or whether they both will be equally good."

  60. "Behold, I have bought you and your land this day for Pharaoh. Lo, here is seed for you, and you shall sow the land, and it shall happen during the harvests that you shall give one-fifth to Pharaoh, while four-fifths will be yours as seed of the field, and food for you and those in your households, and as food for your little ones."

  61. "How fear-inspiring this place is! This is nothing else but the house of God and this is the gate of the heavens."

  62. "One thing have I asked of Jehovah, that will I seek after;
    That I may dwell in the house of Jehovah all the days of my life,
    To behold the beauty of Jehovah,
    And to inquire in his temple."

  63. "For a day in your courtyards is better than a thousand [elsewhere].
    I have chosen to stand at the threshold in the house of my God
    Rather than to move around in the tents of wickedness."

  64. "And let us continue to consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another even more as you see the day coming nearer."

  65. "By iron, iron itself is sharpened. So one man sharpens the face of another."

  66. "If possible, so far as it depends on you, live in peace with all people."

  67. "Do not quarrel with a man for no cause,
    When he has done you no harm."

  68. "Depart from evil and do good; seek, inquire for and crave peace, and pursue—go after—it!"

  69. "Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding."

  70. "I solemnly tell you that it is with difficulty that a rich man will enter the Kingdom of the Heavens. Yes, I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God."

  71. "No servant can serve two masters. He is bound to hate one and love the other, or give his loyalty to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and the power of money at the same time."

  72. "This is the interpretation, O king: It is the decree of the Most High [God] which has come upon my lord the king, that you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field; you shall be made to eat grass as do the oxen, and you shall be wet with the dew of the heavens, and seven times [or years] shall pass over you; until you know that the Most High [God] rules the kingdom of mankind, and gives it to whomever He will."

  73. "Let them be ashamed and afraid for ever; yea, let them be confounded and perish. And let them know Your name is Jehovah, that You alone are the Most High over all the earth."

  74. "Come, YOU people, behold the activities of Jehovah,
    How he has set astonishing events on the earth.
    He is making wars to cease to the extremity of the earth.
    The bow he breaks apart and does cut the spear in pieces;
    The wagons he burns in the fire."

  75. "And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more."

  76. "I tell you with assurance; no one gives up home, or brothers, or sisters, or mother, or father, or children, or lands, for my sake and for the sake of the gospel, but receives a hundred times as much—now, in this world, homes and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, along with persecutions, and, in the world to come, eternal life!"

  77. "In fact, all those desiring to live with godly devotion in association with Christ Jesus will also be persecuted."

  78. "We also boast of our troubles, because we know that trouble produces endurance, endurance brings God's approval, and his approval creates hope."

  79. "By endurance on YOUR part YOU will acquire YOUR souls."

  80. "Lord, to whom should we go? You have words of everlasting life."

  81. "This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ."

  82. "You yourselves judge which is right in God's sight—to obey you or to obey God. For we cannot stop speaking of what we ourselves have seen and heard."

  83. "We must obey God rather than men."

  84. "Does Jehovah delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of Jehovah? Behold! Obeying is better than sacrifice; to give attention is better than the fat of rams."

  85. "Here, further, it is sought in stewards, that a man be found faithful."

  86. "The man who is faithful in the little things will be faithful in the big things, and the man who cheats in the little things will cheat in the big things too."

  87. "TEKEL, you have been weighed on the scales and found wanting."

  88. "God knows everything I do; he sees every step I take. I swear I have never acted wickedly and never tried to deceive others. Let God weigh me on honest scales, and he will see how innocent I am."

  89. "Are you jealous for me? I wish all Jehovah's people were prophets because Jehovah would put his spirit on them!"

  90. "I have been very jealous for Yahweh, the God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and slain your prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away."

  91. "Moreover, let us be mindful of each other, stirring each other up to the uttermost to love and to the performance of noble deeds."

  92. "By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another."

  93. "Never act out of rivalry or vainglory, but in humility deem others as better than yourselves."

  94. "Who made you superior to others? Didn't God give you everything you have? Well, then, how can you boast, as if what you have were not a gift?"

  95. "If any of you is deficient in wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all without grudging or reproach, and his request will be granted."

  96. "In God I put my trust,
          I fear not,
    What can man do to me?"

  97. "If God is for us, who can be against us?"

  98. "Be strong and of good courage, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that is with him; for there is a greater with us than with him: with him is an arm of flesh; but with us is Jehovah our God to help us, and to fight our battles."

  99. "If Jehovah does not build the house, they who build it labor in vain; if Jehovah does not keep the city, the one keeping it stays awake in vain."

  100. "The angel of Jehovah encampeth round about them that fear him,
        And delivereth them."

  101. "The name of Jehovah is a strong tower. Into it the righteous runs and is given protection."

Picture credit: THE BURNING BUSH (detail from), from Sacred Biography and History, by Rev. J. W. Harding, D D., Published by Hugh Heron, Chicago, ILL, 1874.

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