Job 28; Job 29; Acts 13:1-25

1 There are mines where silver is dug; There are places where gold is refined. 2 We dig iron out of the ground And melt copper out of the stones. 3 Miners explore the deepest darkness. They search the depths of the earth And dig for rocks in the darkness. 4 Far from where anyone lives Or human feet ever travel, They dig the shafts of mines. There they work in loneliness, Clinging to ropes in the pits. 5 Food grows out of the earth, But underneath the same earth All is torn up and crushed. 6 The stones of the earth contain sapphires, And its dust contains gold. 7 No hawk sees the roads to the mines, And no vulture ever flies over them. 8 No lion or other fierce beast Ever travels those lonely roads. 9 Miners dig the hardest rocks, Dig mountains away at their base. 10 As they tunnel through the rocks, They discover precious stones. 11 They dig to the sources of rivers And bring to light what is hidden. 12 But where can wisdom be found? Where can we learn to understand? 13 Wisdom is not to be found among mortals; No one knows its true value. 14 The depths of the oceans and seas Say that wisdom is not found there. 15 It cannot be bought with silver or gold. 16 The finest gold and jewels Cannot equal its value. 17 It is worth more than gold, Than a gold vase or finest glass. 18 The value of wisdom is more Than coral or crystal or rubies. 19 The finest topaz and the purest gold Cannot compare with the value of wisdom. 20 Where, then, is the source of wisdom? Where can we learn to understand? 21 No living creature can see it, Not even a bird in flight. 22 Even death and destruction Admit they have heard only rumors. 23 God alone knows the way, Knows the place where wisdom is found, 24 Because he sees the ends of the earth, Sees everything under the sky. 25 When God gave the wind its power And determined the size of the sea; 26 When God decided where the rain would fall, And the path that the thunderclouds travel; 27 It was then he saw wisdom and tested its worth - He gave it his approval. 28 God said to us humans, "To be wise, you must have reverence for the Lord. To understand, you must turn from evil."
1 Job began speaking again. 2 If only my life could once again be as it was when God watched over me. 3 God was always with me then and gave me light as I walked through the darkness. 4 Those were the days when I was prosperous, and the friendship of God protected my home. 5 Almighty God was with me then, and I was surrounded by all my children. 6 My cows and goats gave plenty of milk, and my olive trees grew in the rockiest soil. 7 Whenever the city elders met and I took my place among them, 8 young men stepped aside as soon as they saw me, and old men stood up to show me respect. 9 The leaders of the people would stop talking; 10 even the most important men kept silent. 11 Everyone who saw me or heard of me had good things to say about what I had done. 12 When the poor cried out, I helped them; I gave help to orphans who had nowhere to turn. 13 People who were in deepest misery praised me, and I helped widows find security. 14 I have always acted justly and fairly. 15 I was eyes for the blind, and feet for the lame. 16 I was like a father to the poor and took the side of strangers in trouble. 17 I destroyed the power of cruel men and rescued their victims. 18 I always expected to live a long life and to die at home in comfort. 19 I was like a tree whose roots always have water and whose branches are wet with dew. 20 Everyone was always praising me, and my strength never failed me. 21 When I gave advice, people were silent and listened carefully to what I said; 22 they had nothing to add when I had finished. My words sank in like drops of rain; 23 everyone welcomed them just as farmers welcome rain in spring. 24 I smiled on them when they had lost confidence; my cheerful face encouraged them. 25 I took charge and made the decisions; I led them as a king leads his troops, and gave them comfort in their despair.
1 In the church at Antioch there were some prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon (called the Black), Lucius (from Cyrene), Manaen (who had been brought up with Governor Herod ), and Saul. 2 While they were serving the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said to them, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul, to do the work to which I have called them." 3 They fasted and prayed, placed their hands on them, and sent them off. 4 Having been sent by the Holy Spirit, Barnabas and Saul went to Seleucia and sailed from there to the island of Cyprus. 5 When they arrived at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues. They had John Mark with them to help in the work. 6 They went all the way across the island to Paphos, where they met a certain magician named Bar-Jesus, a Jew who claimed to be a prophet. 7 He was a friend of the governor of the island, Sergius Paulus, who was an intelligent man. The governor called Barnabas and Saul before him because he wanted to hear the word of God. 8 But they were opposed by the magician Elymas (that is his name in Greek), who tried to turn the governor away from the faith. 9 Then Saul - also known as Paul - was filled with the Holy Spirit; he looked straight at the magician 10 and said, "You son of the Devil! You are the enemy of everything that is good. You are full of all kinds of evil tricks, and you always keep trying to turn the Lord's truths into lies! 11 The Lord's hand will come down on you now; you will be blind and will not see the light of day for a time." At once Elymas felt a dark mist cover his eyes, and he walked around trying to find someone to lead him by the hand. 12 When the governor saw what had happened, he believed; for he was greatly amazed at the teaching about the Lord. 13 Paul and his companions sailed from Paphos and came to Perga, a city in Pamphylia, where John Mark left them and went back to Jerusalem. 14 They went on from Perga and arrived in Antioch in Pisidia, and on the Sabbath they went into the synagogue and sat down. 15 After the reading from the Law of Moses and from the writings of the prophets, the officials of the synagogue sent them a message: "Friends, we want you to speak to the people if you have a message of encouragement for them." 16 Paul stood up, motioned with his hand, and began to speak: "Fellow Israelites and all Gentiles here who worship God: hear me! 17 The God of the people of Israel chose our ancestors and made the people a great nation during the time they lived as foreigners in Egypt. God brought them out of Egypt by his great power, 18 and for forty years he endured them in the desert. 19 He destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan and made his people the owners of the land. 20 All of this took about 450 years. "After this he gave them judges until the time of the prophet Samuel. 21 And when they asked for a king, God gave them Saul son of Kish from the tribe of Benjamin, to be their king for forty years. 22 After removing him, God made David their king. This is what God said about him: "I have found that David son of Jesse is the kind of man I like, a man who will do all I want him to do.' 23 It was Jesus, a descendant of David, whom God made the Savior of the people of Israel, as he had promised. 24 Before Jesus began his work, John preached to all the people of Israel that they should turn from their sins and be baptized. 25 And as John was about to finish his mission, he said to the people, "Who do you think I am? I am not the one you are waiting for. But listen! He is coming after me, and I am not good enough to take his sandals off his feet.'
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