Psalm 73; Exodus 4:27–6:1; Luke 23:26–49

Book Three

God Is My Strength and Portion Forever

A Psalm of bAsaph.

73  Truly God is good to cIsrael,

to those who are dpure in heart.

But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,

my steps had nearly slipped.

eFor I was fenvious of the arrogant

when I saw the gprosperity of the wicked.

For they have no pangs until death;

their bodies are fat and sleek.

They are not in trouble as others are;

they are not hstricken like the rest of mankind.

Therefore pride is itheir necklace;

violence covers them as ja garment.

Their keyes swell out through fatness;

their hearts overflow with follies.

They scoff and lspeak with malice;

loftily they threaten oppression.

They set their mouths against the heavens,

and their tongue struts through the earth.

10  Therefore his people turn back to them,

and find mno fault in them.1

11  And they say, nHow can God know?

Is there knowledge in the Most High?

12  Behold, these are the wicked;

always at ease, they oincrease in riches.

13  All in vain have I pkept my heart clean

and qwashed my hands in innocence.

14  For all the day long I have been hstricken

and rrebuked severy morning.

15  If I had said, I will speak thus,

I would have betrayed tthe generation of your children.

16  But when I thought how to understand this,

it seemed to me ua wearisome task,

17  until I went into vthe sanctuary of God;

then I discerned their wend.

18  Truly you set them in xslippery places;

you make them fall to ruin.

19  How they are destroyed yin a moment,

swept away utterly by zterrors!

20  Like aa dream when one awakes,

O Lord, when byou rouse yourself, you despise them as phantoms.

21  When my soul was embittered,

when I was pricked in heart,

22  I was cbrutish and ignorant;

I was like da beast toward you.

23  Nevertheless, I am continually with you;

you ehold my right hand.

24  You fguide me with your counsel,

and afterward you will greceive me to glory.

25  hWhom have I in heaven but you?

And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.

26  iMy flesh and my heart may fail,

but God is jthe strength2 of my heart and my kportion lforever.

27  For behold, those who are mfar from you shall perish;

you put an end to everyone who is nunfaithful to you.

28  But for me it is good to obe near God;

I have made the Lord God my prefuge,

that I may qtell of all your works.


27 The Lord said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness jto meet Moses. So he went and met him at the kmountain of God and kissed him. 28 And Moses ltold Aaron all the words of the Lord with which he had sent him to speak, and all mthe signs that he had commanded him to do. 29 Then Moses and Aaron nwent and gathered together all the elders of the people of Israel. 30 oAaron spoke all the words that the Lord had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people. 31 And the people pbelieved; and when they heard that the Lord had qvisited the people of Israel and that he had rseen their affliction, sthey bowed their heads and worshiped.

Making Bricks Without Straw

Afterward Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold ta feast to me in the wilderness. But Pharaoh said, uWho is the Lord, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and moreover, vI will not let Israel go. Then they said, The wGod of the Hebrews has met with us. Please let us go a three days' journey into the wilderness that we may sacrifice to the Lord our God, lest he fall upon us with pestilence or with the sword. But the king of Egypt said to them, Moses and Aaron, why do you take the people away from their work? Get back to your xburdens. And Pharaoh said, Behold, ythe people of the land are now many,1 and you make them rest from their burdens! The same day Pharaoh commanded the ztaskmasters of the people and their aforemen, You shall no longer give the people straw to make bricks, as in the past; let them go and gather straw for themselves. But the number of bricks that they made in the past you shall impose on them, you shall by no means reduce it, for they are idle. Therefore they cry, Let us go and offer sacrifice to our God. Let heavier work be laid on the men that they may labor at it and pay no regard to lying words.

10 So the btaskmasters and the foremen of the people went out and said to the people, Thus says Pharaoh, I will not give you straw. 11 Go and get your straw yourselves wherever you can find it, but your work will not be reduced in the least. 12 So the people were scattered throughout all the land of Egypt to gather stubble for straw. 13 The ctaskmasters were urgent, saying, Complete your work, your daily task each day, as when there was straw. 14 And the foremen of the people of Israel, whom Pharaoh's ctaskmasters had set over them, were beaten and were asked, Why have you not done all your task of making bricks today and yesterday, as in the past?

15 Then the foremen of the people of Israel came and cried to Pharaoh, Why do you treat your servants like this? 16 No straw is given to your servants, yet they say to us, Make bricks! And behold, your servants are beaten; but the fault is in your own people. 17 But he said, You are idle, you are idle; that is why you say, Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord. 18 Go now and work. No straw will be given you, but you must still deliver the same number of bricks. 19 The foremen of the people of Israel saw that they were in trouble when they said, You shall by no means reduce your number of bricks, your daily task each day. 20 They met Moses and Aaron, who were waiting for them, as they came out from Pharaoh; 21 and dthey said to them, The Lord look on you and judge, because you have made us stink in the sight of Pharaoh and his servants, and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.

22 Then Moses turned to the Lord and said, O Lord, why have you done evil to this people? Why did you ever send me? 23 For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has done evil to this people, and you have not delivered your people at all.

God Promises Deliverance

But the Lord said to Moses, Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for with a strong hand he will send them out, and with ea strong hand he will fdrive them out of his land.


The Crucifixion

26 iAnd as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus. 27 And there followed him a great multitude of the people and of women who were jmourning and lamenting for him. 28 But turning to them Jesus said, Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For behold, kthe days are coming when they will say, lBlessed are the barren and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed! 30 mThen they will begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us, and to the hills, Cover us. 31 For nif they do these things when othe wood is green, what will happen owhen it is dry?

32 pTwo others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. 33 qAnd when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, pone on his right and one on his left. 34 And Jesus said, Father, rforgive them, sfor they know not what they do.1 And they cast lots tto divide his garments. 35 And uthe people stood by, watching, vbut wthe rulers xscoffed at him, saying, yHe saved others; zlet him save himself, aif he is bthe Christ of God, chis Chosen One! 36 The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and doffering him sour wine 37 and saying, eIf you are fthe King of the Jews, save yourself! 38 gThere was also an inscription over him,2 This is fthe King of the Jews.

39 hOne of the criminals who were hanged irailed at him,3 saying, Are you not jthe Christ? Save yourself and us! 40 But the other rebuked him, saying, Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong. 42 And he said, Jesus, remember me kwhen you come into your kingdom. 43 And he said to him, Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in lparadise.

The Death of Jesus

44 mIt was now about the sixth hour,4 and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour,5 45 while the sun's light failed. And nthe curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46 Then Jesus, ocalling out with a loud voice, said, Father, pinto your hands I qcommit my spirit! And having said this rhe breathed his last. 47 Now swhen the centurion saw what had taken place, the praised God, saying, Certainly this man was innocent! 48 And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home ubeating their breasts. 49 And all vhis acquaintances and wthe women who had followed him from Galilee xstood at a distance watching these things.