1Happy are those who reject the advice of evil people, who do not follow the example of sinners or join those who have no use for God.2Instead, they find joy in obeying the Law of the Lord, and they study it day and night.3They are like trees that grow beside a stream, that bear fruit at the right time, and whose leaves do not dry up. They succeed in everything they do.4But evil people are not like this at all; they are like straw that the wind blows away.5Sinners will be condemned by God and kept apart from God's own people.6The righteous are guided and protected by the Lord, but the evil are on the way to their doom.
1Why do the nations plan rebellion? Why do people make their useless plots?2Their kings revolt, their rulers plot together against the Lord and against the king he chose.3"Let us free ourselves from their rule," they say; "let us throw off their control."4From his throne in heaven the Lord laughs and mocks their feeble plans.5Then he warns them in anger and terrifies them with his fury.6"On Zion, my sacred hill," he says, "I have installed my king."7"I will announce," says the king, "what the Lord has declared. He said to me: "You are my son; today I have become your father.8Ask, and I will give you all the nations; the whole earth will be yours.9You will break them with an iron rod; you will shatter them in pieces like a clay pot.' "10Now listen to this warning, you kings; learn this lesson, you rulers of the world:11Serve the Lord with fear; tremble12and bow down to him; or else his anger will be quickly aroused, and you will suddenly die. Happy are all who go to him for protection.
1I have so many enemies, Lord, so many who turn against me!2They talk about me and say, "God will not help him."3But you, O Lord, are always my shield from danger; you give me victory and restore my courage.4I call to the Lord for help, and from his sacred hill he answers me.5I lie down and sleep, and all night long the Lord protects me.6I am not afraid of the thousands of enemies who surround me on every side.7Come, Lord! Save me, my God! You punish all my enemies and leave them powerless to harm me.8Victory comes from the Lord - may he bless his people.
1Paul and Silas traveled on through Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue.2According to his usual habit Paul went to the synagogue. There during three Sabbaths he held discussions with the people, quoting3and explaining the Scriptures, and proving from them that the Messiah had to suffer and rise from death. "This Jesus whom I announce to you," Paul said, "is the Messiah."4Some of them were convinced and joined Paul and Silas; so did many of the leading women and a large group of Greeks who worshiped God.5But some Jews were jealous and gathered worthless loafers from the streets and formed a mob. They set the whole city in an uproar and attacked the home of a man named Jason, in an attempt to find Paul and Silas and bring them out to the people.6But when they did not find them, they dragged Jason and some other believers before the city authorities and shouted, "These men have caused trouble everywhere! Now they have come to our city,7and Jason has kept them in his house. They are all breaking the laws of the Emperor, saying that there is another king, whose name is Jesus."8With these words they threw the crowd and the city authorities in an uproar.9The authorities made Jason and the others pay the required amount of money to be released, and then let them go.10As soon as night came, the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived, they went to the synagogue.11The people there were more open-minded than the people in Thessalonica. They listened to the message with great eagerness, and every day they studied the Scriptures to see if what Paul said was really true.12Many of them believed; and many Greek women of high social standing and many Greek men also believed.13But when the Jews in Thessalonica heard that Paul had preached the word of God in Berea also, they came there and started exciting and stirring up the mobs.14At once the believers sent Paul away to the coast; but both Silas and Timothy stayed in Berea.15The men who were taking Paul went with him as far as Athens and then returned to Berea with instructions from Paul that Silas and Timothy should join him as soon as possible.