PLUS Resource: 6 Prayers for When You Are Fighting Anxiety

Acts 16:1-15; Judges 2; Judges 3; Job 34

Acts 16:1-15

Paul Selects Timothy

1 Then he went on to Derbe and Lystra, where there was a disciple named Timothy, the son of a believing Jewish woman, but his father was a Greek. 2 The brothers at Lystra and Iconium spoke highly of him. 3 Paul wanted Timothy to go with him, so he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places, since they all knew that his father was a Greek. 4 As they traveled through the towns, they delivered the decisions reached by the apostles and elders at Jerusalem for them to observe. 5 So the churches were strengthened in the faith and were increased in number daily.

Evangelization of Europe

6 They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia and were prevented by the Holy Spirit from speaking the message in the province of Asia. 7 When they came to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them. 8 So, bypassing Mysia, they came down to Troas. 9 During the night a vision appeared to Paul: a Macedonian man was standing and pleading with him, "Cross over to Macedonia and help us!" 10 After he had seen the vision, we immediately made efforts to set out for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to evangelize them.

Lydia's Conversion

11 Then, setting sail from Troas, we ran a straight course to Samothrace, the next day to Neapolis, 12 and from there to Philippi, a Roman colony, which is a leading city of that district of Macedonia. We stayed in that city for a number of days. 13 On the Sabbath day we went outside the city gate by the river, where we thought there was a place of prayer. We sat down and spoke to the women gathered there. 14 A woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who worshiped God, was listening. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was spoken by Paul. 15 After she and her household were baptized, she urged us, "If you consider me a believer in the Lord, come and stay at my house." And she persuaded us.

Judges 2

Pattern of Sin and Judgment

1 The Angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bochim and said, "I brought you out of Egypt and led you into the land I had promised to your fathers. I also said: I will never break My covenant with you. 2 You are not to make a covenant with the people who are living in this land, and you are to tear down their altars.But you have not obeyed Me. What is this you have done? 3 Therefore, I now say: I will not drive out these people before you. They will be thorns in your sides, and their gods will be a trap to you." 4 When the Angel of the Lord had spoken these words to all the Israelites, the people wept loudly. 5 So they named that place Bochim and offered sacrifices there to the Lord.

Joshua's Death

6 Joshua sent the people away, and the Israelites went to take possession of the land, each to his own inheritance. 7 The people worshiped the Lord throughout Joshua's lifetime and during the lifetimes of the elders who outlived Joshua. They had seen all the Lord's great works He had done for Israel. 8 Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of 110. 9 They buried him in the territory of his inheritance, in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. 10 That whole generation was also gathered to their ancestors. After them another generation rose up who did not know the Lord or the works He had done for Israel. 11 The Israelites did what was evil in the Lord's sight. They worshiped the Baals 12 and abandoned the Lord, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of Egypt. They went after other gods from the surrounding peoples and bowed down to them. They infuriated the Lord, 13 for they abandoned Him and worshiped Baal and the Ashtoreths. 14 The Lord's anger burned against Israel, and He handed them over to marauders who raided them. He sold them to the enemies around them, so that they could no longer resist their enemies. 15 Whenever the Israelites went out, the Lord was against them and brought disaster [on them], just as He had promised and sworn to them. So they suffered greatly. 16 The Lord raised up judges, who saved them from the power of their marauders, 17 but they did not listen to their judges. Instead, they prostituted themselves with other gods, bowing down to them. They quickly turned from the way of their fathers, who had walked in obedience to the Lord's commands. They did not do as their fathers did. 18 Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for the Israelites, the Lord was with him and saved the people from the power of their enemies while the judge was still alive. The Lord was moved to pity whenever they groaned because of those who were oppressing and afflicting them. 19 Whenever the judge died, the Israelites would act even more corruptly than their fathers, going after other gods to worship and bow down to them. They did not turn from their [evil] practices or their obstinate ways. 20 The Lord's anger burned against Israel, and He declared, "Because this nation has violated My covenant that I made with their fathers and disobeyed Me, 21 I will no longer drive out before them any of the nations Joshua left when he died. 22 [I did this] to test Israel and to see whether they would keep the Lord's way by walking in it, as their fathers had." 23 The Lord left these nations and did not drive them out immediately. He did not hand them over to Joshua.

Judges 3

The Lord Tests Israel

1 These are the nations the Lord left in order to test Israel, since none of these Israelites had fought in any of the wars with Canaan. 2 This was to teach the future generations of the Israelites [how to fight in] battle, especially those who had not fought before. 3 [These nations included:] the five rulers of the Philistines and all of the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites who lived in the Lebanese mountains from Mount Baal-hermon as far as the entrance to Hamath. 4 The Lord left them to test Israel, to determine if they would keep the Lord's commands He had given their fathers through Moses. 5 But they settled among the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. 6 The Israelites took their daughters as wives for themselves, gave their own daughters to their sons, and worshiped their gods.

Othniel, the First Judge

7 The Israelites did what was evil in the Lord's sight; they forgot the Lord their God and worshiped the Baals and the Asherahs. 8 The Lord's anger burned against Israel, and He sold them to Cushan-rishathaim king of Aram of the Two Rivers,and the Israelites served him eight years. 9 The Israelites cried out to the Lord. So the Lord raised up Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb's youngest brother as a deliverer to save the Israelites. 10 The Spirit of the Lord was on him, and he judged Israel. Othniel went out to battle, and the Lord handed over Cushan-rishathaim king of Aram to him, so that Othniel overpowered him. 11 Then the land was peaceful 40 years, and Othniel son of Kenaz died.

Ehud

12 The Israelites again did what was evil in the Lord's sight. He gave Eglon king of Moab power over Israel, because they had done what was evil in the Lord's sight. 13 After Eglon convinced the Ammonites and the Amalekites to join forces with him, he attacked and defeated Israel and took possession of the City of Palms. 14 The Israelites served Eglon king of Moab 18 years. 15 Then the Israelites cried out to the Lord, and He raised up Ehud son of Gera, a left-handed Benjaminite, as a deliverer for them. The Israelites sent him to Eglon king of Moab with tribute [money]. 16 Ehud made himself a double-edged sword 18 inches long. He strapped it to his right thigh under his clothes 17 and brought the tribute to Eglon king of Moab, who was an extremely fat man. 18 When Ehud had finished presenting the tribute, he dismissed the people who had carried it. 19 At the carved images near Gilgal he returned and said, "King [Eglon], I have a secret message for you." The king called for silence, and all his attendants left him. 20 Then Ehud approached him while he was sitting alone in his room upstairs [where it was] cool. Ehud said, "I have a word from God for you," and the king stood up from his throne. 21 Ehud reached with his left hand, took the sword from his right thigh, and plunged it into Eglon's belly. 22 Even the handle went in after the blade, and Eglon's fat closed in over it, so that Ehud did not withdraw the sword from his belly. And Eglon's insides came out. 23 Ehud escaped by way of the porch, closing and locking the doors of the upstairs room behind him. 24 Ehud was gone when Eglon's servants came in. They looked and found the doors of the upstairs room locked and thought he was relieving himself in the cool room. 25 The servants waited until they became worried and saw that he had still not opened the doors of the upstairs room. So they took the key and opened the doors-and there was their lord lying dead on the floor! 26 Ehud escaped while the servants waited. He crossed over [the Jordan] near the carved images and reached Seirah. 27 After he arrived, he sounded the ram's horn throughout the hill country of Ephraim. The Israelites came down with him from the hill country, and he became their leader. 28 He told them, "Follow me, because the Lord has handed over your enemies, the Moabites, to you." So they followed him, captured the fords of the Jordan leading to Moab, and did not allow anyone to cross over. 29 At that time they struck down about 10,000 Moabites, all strong and able-bodied men. Not one of them escaped. 30 Moab became subject to Israel that day, and the land was peaceful 80 years.

Shamgar

31 After Ehud, Shamgar son of Anath [became judge]. He delivered Israel by striking down 600 Philistines with an oxgoad.

Job 34

1 Then Elihu continued, saying: 2 Hear my words, you wise men, and listen to me, you knowledgeable ones. 3 Doesn't the ear test words as the palate tastes food? 4 Let us judge for ourselves what is right; let us decide together what is good. 5 For Job has declared, "I am righteous, yet God has deprived me of justice. 6 Would I lie about my case? My wound is incurable, though I am without transgression." 7 What man is like Job? He drinks derision like water. 8 He keeps company with evildoers and walks with wicked men. 9 For he has said, "A man gains nothing when he becomes God's friend." 10 Therefore listen to me, you men of understanding. It is impossible for God [to do] wrong, and [for] the Almighty [to act] unjustly. 11 For He repays a person [according to] his deeds, and He brings his ways on him. 12 Indeed, it is true that God does not act wickedly and the Almighty does not pervert justice. 13 Who gave Him authority over the earth? Who put Him in charge of the entire world? 14 If He put His mind to it and withdrew the spirit and breath He [gave], 15 every living thing would perish together and mankind would return to the dust. 16 If you [have] understanding, hear this; listen to what I have to say. 17 Could one who hates justice govern [the world]? Will you condemn the mighty Righteous One, 18 who says to a king, "Worthless man!" and to nobles, "Wicked men!"? 19 God is not partial to princes and does not favor the rich over the poor, for they are all the work of His hands. 20 They die suddenly in the middle of the night; people shudder, then pass away. Even the mighty are removed without effort. 21 For His eyes [watch] over a man's ways, and He observes all his steps. 22 There is no darkness, no deep darkness, where evildoers can hide themselves. 23 God does not [need to] examine a person further, that one should approach Him in court. 24 He shatters the mighty without an investigation and sets others in their place. 25 Therefore, He recognizes their deeds and overthrows [them] by night, and they are crushed. 26 In full view of the public, He strikes them for their wickedness, 27 because they turned aside from following Him and did not understand any of His ways 28 but caused the poor to cry out to Him, and He heard the outcry of the afflicted. 29 But when God is silent, who can declare [Him] guilty? When He hides [His] face, who can see Him? Yet He [watches] over both individuals and nations, 30 so that godless men should not rule or ensnare the people. 31 Suppose someone says to God, "I have endured [my punishment]; I will no [longer] act wickedly. 32 Teach me what I cannot see; if I have done wrong, I won't do it again." 33 Should God repay [you] on your terms when you have rejected [His]? You must choose, not I! So declare what you know. 34 Reasonable men will say to me, along with the wise men who hear me, 35 "Job speaks without knowledge; his words are without insight." 36 If only Job were tested to the limit, because [his] answers are [like] those of wicked men. 37 For he adds rebellion to his sin; he [scornfully] claps in our presence, while multiplying his words against God.
California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information  California - CCPA Notice