Psalms 72; Psalms 73; Romans 9:1-15

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Psalms 72

1 O God, give the king your justice and the king's son your righteousness
2 so that he may judge your people with righteousness and your oppressed [people] with justice.
3 May the mountains bring peace to the people and the hills bring righteousness.
4 May he grant justice to the people who are oppressed. May he save the children of needy people and crush their oppressor.
5 May they fear you as long as the sun and moon [shine]-- throughout every generation.
6 May he be like rain that falls on [freshly] cut grass, like showers that water the land.
7 May righteous people blossom in his day. May there be unlimited peace until the moon no longer [shines].
8 May he rule from sea to sea, from the Euphrates River to the ends of the earth.
9 May the people of the desert kneel in front of him. May his enemies lick the dust.
10 May the kings from Tarshish and the islands bring presents. May the kings from Sheba and Seba bring gifts.
11 May all kings worship him. May all nations serve him.
12 He will rescue the needy person who cries for help and the oppressed person who has no one's help.
13 He will have pity on the poor and needy and will save the lives of the needy.
14 He will rescue them from oppression and violence. Their blood will be precious in his sight.
15 May he live long. May the gold from Sheba be given to him. May [the people] pray for him continually. May [they] praise him all day long.
16 May there be plenty of grain in the land. May it wave [in the breeze] on the mountaintops, its fruit like [the treetops of] Lebanon. May those from the city flourish like the grass on the ground.
17 May his name endure forever. May his name continue as long as the sun [shines]. May all nations be blessed through him and call him blessed.
18 Thank the LORD God, the God of Israel, who alone does miracles.
19 Thanks be to his glorious name forever. May the whole earth be filled with his glory. Amen and amen!
20 The prayers by David, son of Jesse, end here.

Psalms 73

1 God is truly good to Israel, to those whose lives are pure.
2 But my feet had almost stumbled. They had almost slipped
3 because I was envious of arrogant people when I saw the prosperity that wicked people enjoy.
4 They suffer no pain. Their bodies are healthy.
5 They have no drudgery in their lives like ordinary people. They are not plagued [with problems] like others.
6 That is why they wear arrogance like a necklace and acts of violence like clothing.
7 Their eyes peer out from their fat faces, and their imaginations run wild.
8 They ridicule. They speak maliciously. They speak arrogantly about oppression.
9 They verbally attack heaven, and they order people around on earth.
10 That is why God's people turn to wickedness and swallow their words.
11 Then wicked people ask, "What does God know?" "Does the Most High know anything?"
12 Look how wicked they are! They never have a worry. They grow more and more wealthy.
13 I've received no reward for keeping my life pure and washing my hands of any blame.
14 I'm plagued [with problems] all day long, and every morning my punishment [begins again].
15 If I had said, "I will continue to talk like that," I would have betrayed God's people.
16 But when I tried to understand this, it was too difficult for me.
17 Only when I came into God's holy place did I [finally] understand what would happen to them.
18 You put them in slippery places and make them fall into ruin.
19 They are suddenly destroyed. They are completely swept away by terror!
20 As [someone] gets rid of a dream when he wakes up, so you, O Lord, get rid of the thought of them when you wake up.
21 When my heart was filled with bitterness and my mind was seized [with envy],
22 I was stupid, and I did not understand. I was like a dumb animal in your presence.
23 Yet, I am always with you. You hold on to my right hand.
24 With your advice you guide me, and in the end you will take me to glory.
25 As long as I have you, I don't need anyone else in heaven or on earth.
26 My body and mind may waste away, but God remains the foundation of my life and my inheritance forever.
27 Without a doubt, those who are far from you will die. You destroy all who are unfaithful to you.
28 Being united with God is my highest good. I have made the Almighty LORD my refuge so that I may report everything that he has done.

Romans 9:1-15

1 As a Christian, I'm telling you the truth. I'm not lying. The Holy Spirit, along with my own thoughts, supports me in this.
2 I have deep sorrow and endless heartache.
3 I wish I could be condemned and cut off from Christ for the sake of others who, like me, are Jewish by birth.
4 They are Israelites, God's adopted children. They have the Lord's glory, the pledges, Moses' Teachings, the true worship, and the promises.
5 The Messiah is descended from their ancestors according to his human nature. The Messiah is God over everything, forever blessed. Amen.
6 Now it is not as though God's word has failed. Clearly, not everyone descended from Israel is part of Israel
7 or a descendant of Abraham. However, [as Scripture says,] "Through Isaac your descendants will carry on your name."
8 This means that children born by natural descent [from Abraham] are not necessarily God's children. Instead, children born by the promise are considered Abraham's descendants.
9 For example, this is what the promise said, "I will come back at the right time, and Sarah will have a son."
10 The same thing happened to Rebekah. Rebekah became pregnant by our ancestor Isaac.
11 Before the children had been born or had done anything good or bad, Rebekah was told that the older child would serve the younger one. This was said to Rebekah so that God's plan would remain a matter of his choice,
12 a choice based on God's call and not on anything people do.
13 The Scriptures say, "I loved Jacob, but I hated Esau."
14 What can we say--that God is unfair? That's unthinkable!
15 For example, God said to Moses, "I will be kind to anyone I want to. I will be merciful to anyone I want to."