Psalm 102; Isaiah 31; 1 Thessalonians 4:13–18

Do Not Hide Your Face from Me

A Prayer of one afflicted, when he is xfaint and ypours out his complaint before the Lord.

102  zHear my prayer, O Lord;

let my cry acome to you!

bDo not hide your face from me

in cthe day of my distress!

dIncline your ear to me;

eanswer me speedily fin the day when I call!

For my days gpass away like smoke,

and my hbones burn like a furnace.

My heart is istruck down like grass and jhas withered;

I kforget to eat my bread.

Because of my loud groaning

my lbones cling to my flesh.

I am like ma desert owl of the wilderness,

like an owl1 of the waste places;

I nlie awake;

I am like a lonely sparrow on the housetop.

All the day my enemies taunt me;

those who oderide me puse my name for a curse.

For I eat ashes like bread

and qmingle tears with my drink,

10  because of your indignation and anger;

for you have rtaken me up and sthrown me down.

11  My days are like tan evening shadow;

I jwither away like grass.

12  But you, O Lord, are uenthroned forever;

you vare remembered throughout all generations.

13  You will warise and have xpity on Zion;

it is the time to favor her;

ythe appointed time has come.

14  For your servants hold her zstones dear

and have pity on her dust.

15  Nations will afear the name of the Lord,

and all bthe kings of the earth will fear your glory.

16  For the Lord cbuilds up Zion;

he dappears in his glory;

17  he eregards the prayer of the destitute

and does not despise their prayer.

18  Let this be frecorded for ga generation to come,

so that ha people yet to be created may praise the Lord:

19  that he ilooked down from his holy height;

from heaven the Lord looked at the earth,

20  to hear jthe groans of the prisoners,

to set free kthose who were doomed to die,

21  that they may ldeclare in Zion the name of the Lord,

and in Jerusalem his praise,

22  when mpeoples gather together,

and kingdoms, to worship the Lord.

23  He has broken my strength in midcourse;

he nhas shortened my days.

24  O my God, oI say, take me not away

in the midst of my days

pyou whose years endure

throughout all generations!

25  qOf old you laid the foundation of the earth,

and rthe heavens are the work of your hands.

26  sThey will perish, but tyou will remain;

they will all wear out like a garment.

You will change them like a robe, and they will pass away,

27  but uyou are the same, and your years have no end.

28  vThe children of your servants wshall dwell secure;

xtheir offspring shall be established before you.


Woe to Those Who Go Down to Egypt

31  Woe1 to vthose who go down to Egypt for help

and rely on horses,

who wtrust in chariots because they are many

and in horsemen because they are very strong,

but xdo not look to the Holy One of Israel

or consult the Lord!

And yyet he is wise and brings disaster;

zhe does not call back his words,

but awill arise against the house of the evildoers

and against the helpers of bthose who work iniquity.

The Egyptians are man, and not God,

and their horses care flesh, and not spirit.

When the Lord stretches out his hand,

the helper will stumble, and he who is helped will fall,

and they will all perish together.

For thus the Lord said to me,

dAs a lion or a young lion growls over his prey,

and when a band of shepherds is called out against him

he is not terrified by their shouting

or daunted at their noise,

eso the Lord of hosts will come down

to fight2 on Mount Zion and on its hill.

fLike birds hovering, so the Lord of hosts

will protect Jerusalem;

he will protect and deliver it;

he will spare and rescue it.

gTurn to him from whom people3 have hdeeply revolted, O children of Israel. For in that day ieveryone shall cast away his idols of silver and his idols of gold, which your hands have sinfully made for you.

jAnd the Assyrian shall fall by a sword, not of man;

and a sword, not of man, shall devour him;

and he shall flee from the sword,

and his young men shall be kput to forced labor.

lHis rock shall pass away in terror,

and his officers desert the standard in panic,

declares the Lord, whose mfire is in Zion,

and whose nfurnace is in Jerusalem.


The Coming of the Lord

13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, gthat you may not grieve as others do hwho have no hope. 14 For isince we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him jthose who have fallen asleep. 15 For this we declare to you kby a word from the Lord,1 that lwe who are alive, who are left until mthe coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For nthe Lord himself will descend ofrom heaven pwith a cry of command, with the voice of qan archangel, and rwith the sound of the trumpet of God. And sthe dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be tcaught up together with them uin the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so vwe will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.