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Psalm 26; Psalm 27; Psalm 28; Acts 22

1 Vindicate me, Lord, because I have lived with integrity and have trusted in the Lord without wavering. 2 Test me, Lord, and try me; examine my heart and mind. 3 For Your faithful love is before my eyes, and I live by Your truth. 4 I do not sit with the worthless or associate with hypocrites. 5 I hate a crowd of evildoers, and I do not sit with the wicked. 6 I wash my hands in innocence and go around Your altar, Lord, 7 raising my voice in thanksgiving and telling about Your wonderful works. 8 Lord, I love the house where You dwell, the place where Your glory resides. 9 Do not destroy me along with sinners, or my life along with men of bloodshed 10 in whose hands are evil schemes, and whose right hands are filled with bribes. 11 But I live with integrity; redeem me and be gracious to me. 12 My foot stands on level ground; I will praise the Lord in the assemblies.
1 The Lord is my light and my salvation- whom should I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life- of whom should I be afraid? 2 When evildoers came against me to devour my flesh, my foes and my enemies stumbled and fell. 3 Though an army deploy against me, my heart is not afraid; though war break out against me, still I am confident. 4 I have asked one thing from the Lord; it is what I desire: to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, gazing on the beauty of the Lord and seeking [Him] in His temple. 5 For He will conceal me in His shelter in the day of adversity; He will hide me under the cover of His tent; He will set me high on a rock. 6 Then my head will be high above my enemies around me; I will offer sacrifices in His tent with shouts of joy. I will sing and make music to the Lord. 7 Lord, hear my voice when I call; be gracious to me and answer me. 8 In Your behalf my heart says, "Seek My face." Lord, I will seek Your face. 9 Do not hide Your face from me; do not turn Your servant away in anger. You have been my help; do not leave me or abandon me, God of my salvation. 10 Even if my father and mother abandon me, the Lord cares for me. 11 Because of my adversaries, show me Your way, Lord, and lead me on a level path. 12 Do not give me over to the will of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing violence. 13 I am certain that I will see the Lord's goodness in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be courageous and let your heart be strong. Wait for the Lord.
1 Lord, I call to You; my rock, do not be deaf to me. If You remain silent to me, I will be like those going down to the Pit. 2 Listen to the sound of my pleading when I cry to You for help, when I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary. 3 Do not drag me away with the wicked, with the evildoers, who speak in friendly ways with their neighbors, while malice is in their hearts. 4 Repay them according to what they have done- according to the evil of their deeds. Repay them according to the work of their hands; give them back what they deserve. 5 Because they do not consider what the Lord has done or the work of His hands, He will tear them down and not rebuild them. 6 May the Lord be praised, for He has heard the sound of my pleading. 7 The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. Therefore my heart rejoices, and I praise Him with my song. 8 The Lord is the strength of His people; He is a stronghold of salvation for His anointed. 9 Save Your people, bless Your possession, shepherd them, and carry them forever.
1 "Brothers and fathers, listen now to my defense before you." 2 When they heard that he was addressing them in the Hebrew language, they became even quieter. 3 He continued, "I am a Jewish man, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, and educated according to the strict view of our patriarchal law. Being zealous for God, just as all of you are today, 4 I persecuted this Way to the death, binding and putting both men and women in jail, 5 as both the high priest and the whole council of elders can testify about me. Having received letters from them to the brothers, I was traveling to Damascus to bring those who were prisoners there to be punished in Jerusalem. 6 "As I was traveling and near Damascus, about noon an intense light from heaven suddenly flashed around me. 7 I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?' 8 "I answered, 'Who are You, Lord?' "He said to me, 'I am Jesus the Nazarene, whom you are persecuting!' 9 Now those who were with me saw the light, but they did not hear the voice of the One who was speaking to me. 10 "Then I said, 'What should I do, Lord?' "And the Lord told me, 'Get up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told about everything that is assigned for you to do.' 11 "Since I couldn't see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus. 12 Someone named Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good reputation with all the Jews residing there, 13 came to me, stood by me, and said, 'Brother Saul, regain your sight.' And in that very hour I looked up and saw him. 14 Then he said, 'The God of our fathers has appointed you to know His will, to see the Righteous One, and to hear the sound of His voice. 15 For you will be a witness for Him to all people of what you have seen and heard. 16 And now, why delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins by calling on His name.' 17 "After I came back to Jerusalem and was praying in the temple complex, I went into a visionary state 18 and saw Him telling me, 'Hurry and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not accept your testimony about Me!' 19 "But I said, 'Lord, they know that in synagogue after synagogue I had those who believed in You imprisoned and beaten. 20 And when the blood of Your witness Stephen was being shed, I myself was standing by and approving, and I guarded the clothes of those who killed him.' 21 "Then He said to me, 'Go, because I will send you far away to the Gentiles.' " 22 They listened to him up to this word. Then they raised their voices, shouting, "Wipe this person off the earth-it's a disgrace for him to live!" 23 As they were yelling and flinging aside their robes and throwing dust into the air, 24 the commander ordered him to be brought into the barracks, directing that he be examined with the scourge, so he could discover the reason they were shouting against him like this. 25 As they stretched him out for the lash, Paul said to the centurion standing by, "Is it legal for you to scourge a man who is a Roman citizen and is uncondemned?" 26 When the centurion heard this, he went and reported to the commander, saying, "What are you going to do? For this man is a Roman citizen." 27 The commander came and said to him, "Tell me-are you a Roman citizen?" "Yes," he said. 28 The commander replied, "I bought this citizenship for a large amount of money." "But I myself was born a citizen," Paul said. 29 Therefore, those who were about to examine him withdrew from him at once. The commander too was alarmed when he realized Paul was a Roman citizen and he had bound him. 30 The next day, since he wanted to find out exactly why Paul was being accused by the Jews, he released him and instructed the chief priests and all the Sanhedrin to convene. Then he brought Paul down and placed him before them.
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