Genesis 12–15; Psalm 148; Mark 5

The Call of Abram

12 Now mthe Lord said1 to Abram, Go from your country2 and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. nAnd I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. oI will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and pin you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.3

So Abram went, as the Lord had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from qHaran. And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother’s son, and all their possessions that they had gathered, and the people that they had acquired in Haran, and they set out to go to the land of Canaan. When they came to the land of Canaan, Abram rpassed through the land to the place at Shechem, to sthe oak4 of tMoreh. At that time uthe Canaanites were in the land. Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said, vTo your offspring I will give this land. So he built there an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him. From there he moved to the hill country on the east of wBethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. And there he built an altar to the Lord and called upon the name of the Lord. And Abram journeyed on, still going toward the Negeb.

Abram and Sarai in Egypt

10 Now xthere was a famine in the land. So Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, for the famine was severe in the land. 11 When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, I know that you are a woman beautiful in appearance, 12 and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, This is his wife. Then they ywill kill me, but they will let you live. 13 Say you are my sister, that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared for your sake. 14 When Abram entered Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. 15 And when the princes of Pharaoh saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh. And the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. 16 And for her sake he dealt well with Abram; and he had sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male servants, female servants, female donkeys, and camels.

17 But the Lord zafflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 So Pharaoh called Abram and said, What is this you have done to me? Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, She is my sister, so that I took her for my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her, and go. 20 And Pharaoh gave men orders concerning him, and they sent him away with his wife and all that he had.

Abram and Lot Separate

13 So Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that he had, and Lot with him, ainto the Negeb.

bNow Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. And he journeyed on from the Negeb as far as Bethel to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to cthe place where he had made an altar at the first. And there Abram called upon the name of the Lord. And Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents, so that dthe land could not support both of them dwelling together; for their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together, eand there was strife between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and the herdsmen of Lot’s livestock. At that time fthe Canaanites and the Perizzites were dwelling in the land.

Then Abram said to Lot, gLet there be no strife between you and me, and between your herdsmen and my herdsmen, hfor we are kinsmen.5 iIs not the whole land before you? Separate yourself from me. If you take the left hand, then I will go to the right, or if you take the right hand, then I will go to the left. 10 And Lot lifted up his eyes and saw that the jJordan Valley was well watered everywhere like kthe garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt, in the direction of lZoar. (This was before the Lord mdestroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 So Lot chose for himself all the Jordan Valley, and Lot journeyed east. Thus they separated from each other. 12 Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the valley and moved his tent as far as Sodom. 13 Now the men of Sodom nwere wicked, great sinners against the Lord.

14 The Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, Lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, onorthward and southward and eastward and westward, 15 for all the land that you see I will give pto you and qto your offspring forever. 16 rI will make your offspring as the dust of the earth, so that if one can count the dust of the earth, your offspring also can be counted. 17 Arise, walk through the length and the breadth of the land, for I will give it to you. 18 So Abram moved his tent and came and ssettled by the toaks6 of Mamre, which uare at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.

Abram Rescues Lot

14 In the days of Amraphel king of vShinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of wElam, and Tidal king of Goiim, these kings made war with xBera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of yAdmah, Shemeber king of yZeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar). And all these joined forces in the Valley of Siddim (zthat is, the Salt Sea). Twelve years they had served Chedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled. In the fourteenth year Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him came and defeated the aRephaim in bAshteroth-karnaim, the cZuzim in Ham, the dEmim in Shaveh-kiriathaim, and the eHorites in their hill country of Seir as far as fEl-paran on the border of the wilderness. Then they turned back and came to En-mishpat (that is, gKadesh) and defeated all the country of the Amalekites, and also the Amorites who were dwelling hin Hazazon-tamar.

Then the king of Sodom, the king of Gomorrah, the king of Admah, the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar) went out, and they joined battle in the Valley of Siddim with Chedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal king of Goiim, Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar, four kings against five. 10 Now the Valley of Siddim was full of ibitumen pits, and as the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, some fell into them, and the rest fled jto the hill country. 11 So the enemy took kall the possessions of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their provisions, and went their way. 12 They also took Lot, lthe son of Abram’s brother, mwho was dwelling in Sodom, and his possessions, and went their way.

13 Then one who had escaped came and told Abram the Hebrew, nwho was living by the ooaks7 of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol and of Aner. These were allies of Abram. 14 When Abram heard that his kinsman had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, pborn in his house, 318 of them, and went in pursuit as far as qDan. 15 And he divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them and pursued them to Hobah, north of Damascus. 16 Then he brought back all the possessions, and also brought back his kinsman Lot rwith his possessions, and the women and the people.

Abram Blessed by Melchizedek

17 After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the sKing’s Valley). 18 And tMelchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was upriest of vGod Most High.) 19 And he blessed him and said,

wBlessed be Abram by God Most High,

xPossessor8 of heaven and earth;

20  and blessed be God Most High,

who has delivered your enemies into your hand!

And Abram gave him ya tenth of everything. 21 And the king of Sodom said to Abram, Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself. 22 But Abram said to the king of Sodom, zI have lifted my hand9 to the Lord, God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth, 23 that aI would not take a thread or a sandal strap or anything that is yours, lest you should say, I have made Abram rich. 24 I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me. Let bAner, Eshcol, and Mamre take their share.

God’s Covenant with Abram

15 After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: cFear not, Abram, I am dyour shield; your reward shall be very great. But Abram said, O Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue10 childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus? And Abram said, Behold, you have given me no offspring, and ea member of my household will be my heir. And behold, the word of the Lord came to him: This man shall not be your heir; fyour very own son11 shall be your heir. And he brought him outside and said, Look toward heaven, and gnumber the stars, if you are able to number them. Then he said to him, hSo shall your offspring be. And ihe believed the Lord, and jhe counted it to him as righteousness.

And he said to him, I am the Lord who kbrought you out from Ur of the Chaldeans lto give you this land to possess. But he said, O Lord God, mhow am I to know that I shall possess it? He said to him, Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon. 10 And he brought him all these, ncut them in half, and laid each half over against the other. But ohe did not cut the birds in half. 11 And when birds of prey came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away.

12 As the sun was going down, a pdeep sleep fell on Abram. And behold, dreadful and great darkness fell upon him. 13 Then the Lord said to Abram, Know for certain qthat your offspring will be sojourners in a land that is not theirs and will be servants there, and rthey will be afflicted for sfour hundred years. 14 But tI will bring judgment on the nation that they serve, and afterward uthey shall come out with great possessions. 15 As for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; vyou shall be buried in a good old age. 16 And they shall come back here in the fourth generation, for wthe iniquity of the Amorites xis not yet complete.

17 When the sun had gone down and it was dark, behold, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. 18 On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, yTo your offspring I give12 this land, from zthe river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates, 19 the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, 20 the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, 21 the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites and the Jebusites.


Praise the Name of the Lord

148  rPraise the Lord!

Praise the Lord sfrom the heavens;

praise him tin the heights!

Praise him, all his angels;

praise him, all his uhosts!

Praise him, sun and moon,

praise him, all you shining stars!

Praise him, you vhighest heavens,

and you wwaters above the heavens!

xLet them praise the name of the Lord!

For yhe commanded and they were created.

And he zestablished them forever and ever;

he gave aa decree, and it shall not bpass away.1

Praise the Lord cfrom the earth,

you dgreat sea creatures and all deeps,

efire and hail, fsnow and mist,

gstormy wind hfulfilling his word!

iMountains and all hills,

jfruit trees and all kcedars!

10  lBeasts and all livestock,

creeping things and mflying birds!

11  Kings of the earth and nall peoples,

princes and all rulers of the earth!

12  Young men and maidens together,

old men and children!

13  oLet them praise the name of the Lord,

for phis name alone is exalted;

qhis majesty is above earth and heaven.

14  He has rraised up a horn for his people,

spraise for all his saints,

for the people of Israel who are tnear to him.

uPraise the Lord!


Jesus Heals a Man with a Demon

uThey came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes.1 And when Jesus2 had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. vHe lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and wfell down before him. And xcrying out with a loud voice, he said, What have you to do with me, Jesus, ySon of zthe Most High God? aI adjure you by God, do not torment me. For he was saying to him, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit! And Jesus asked him, What is your name? He replied, My name is bLegion, for we are many. 10 And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. 11 Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, 12 and they begged him, saying, Send us to the pigs; let us enter them. 13 So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the pigs; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the sea.

14 The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country. And people came to see what it was that had happened. 15 And they came to Jesus and saw the demon-possessed3 man, the one who had had cthe legion, sitting there, dclothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. 16 And those who had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon-possessed man and to the pigs. 17 And ethey began to beg Jesus4 to depart from their region. 18 As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. 19 And he did not permit him but said to him, Go home to your friends and ftell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you. 20 And he went away and began to proclaim in gthe Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.

Jesus Heals a Woman and Jairus’s Daughter

21 And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him, and he was beside the sea. 22 hThen came one of ithe rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name, and seeing him, he fell at his feet 23 and implored him earnestly, saying, My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and jlay your hands on her, so that she may be made well and live. 24 And he went with him.

And a great crowd followed him and kthronged about him. 25 And there was a woman lwho had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, 26 and who had suffered much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better but rather grew worse. 27 She had heard the reports about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. 28 For she said, If I touch even his garments, I will be made well. 29 mAnd immediately the flow of blood dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her ndisease. 30 And Jesus, perceiving in himself that opower had gone out from him, immediately turned about in the crowd and said, Who touched my garments? 31 And his disciples said to him, You see the crowd pressing around you, and yet you say, Who touched me? 32 And he looked around to see who had done it. 33 But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling and fell down before him and told him the whole truth. 34 And he said to her, Daughter, pyour faith has made you well; pgo in peace, and be healed of your ndisease.

35 While he was still speaking, there came from qthe ruler’s house some who said, Your daughter is dead. Why rtrouble sthe Teacher any further? 36 But overhearing5 what they said, Jesus said to qthe ruler of the synagogue, Do not fear, only believe. 37 And he allowed no one to follow him except tPeter and James and uJohn the brother of James. 38 They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus6 saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 And when he had entered, he said to them, vWhy are you making a commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but wsleeping. 40 And they laughed at him. But he xput them all outside and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him and went in where the child was. 41 yTaking her by the hand he said to her, Talitha cumi, which means, Little girl, I say to you, zarise. 42 And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement. 43 And ahe strictly charged them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.