Psalms 26–28; Acts 15:1–21

I Will Bless the Lord

Of David.

26  qVindicate me, O Lord,

for I have rwalked in my integrity,

and I have strusted in the Lord without wavering.

tProve me, O Lord, and try me;

test my heart and umy mind.1

For your vsteadfast love is before my eyes,

and I wwalk in your vfaithfulness.

I do not xsit with men of yfalsehood,

nor do I consort with hypocrites.

I zhate the assembly of evildoers,

and I will not sit with the wicked.

I awash my hands in innocence

and go around your altar, O Lord,

proclaiming thanksgiving aloud,

and telling all your bwondrous deeds.

O Lord, I clove the habitation of your house

and the place where your glory dwells.

dDo not sweep my soul away with sinners,

nor my life with bloodthirsty men,

10  in whose hands are evil devices,

and whose right hands are full of ebribes.

11  But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity;

redeem me, and be gracious to me.

12  My foot stands on flevel ground;

in gthe great assembly I will bless the Lord.

The Lord Is My Light and My Salvation

Of David.

27  The Lord is my hlight and my isalvation;

jwhom shall I fear?

The Lord is the stronghold2 of my life;

of whom shall I be afraid?

When evildoers assail me

to keat up my flesh,

my adversaries and foes,

it is they who stumble and fall.

lThough an army encamp against me,

my heart shall not fear;

though war arise against me,

yet3 I will be confident.

mOne thing have I asked of the Lord,

that will I seek after:

that I may ndwell in the house of the Lord

all the days of my life,

to gaze upon othe beauty of the Lord

and to inquire4 in his temple.

For he will phide me in his shelter

in the day of trouble;

he will conceal me under the cover of his tent;

he will qlift me high upon a rock.

And now my rhead shall be lifted up

above my enemies all around me,

and I will offer in his tent

sacrifices with shouts of sjoy;

tI will sing and make melody to the Lord.

uHear, O Lord, when I cry aloud;

be gracious to me and answer me!

You have said, vSeek5 my face.

My heart says to you,

Your face, Lord, do I seek.6

wHide not your face from me.

Turn not your servant away in anger,

O you who have been my help.

Cast me not off; forsake me not,

xO God of my salvation!

10  For ymy father and my mother have forsaken me,

but the Lord will ztake me in.

11  aTeach me your way, O Lord,

and lead me on ba level path

because of my enemies.

12  cGive me not up to the will of my adversaries;

for dfalse witnesses have risen against me,

and they ebreathe out violence.

13  I believe that I shall look7 upon fthe goodness of the Lord

in gthe land of the living!

14  hWait for the Lord;

ibe strong, and let your heart take courage;

wait for the Lord!

The Lord Is My Strength and My Shield

Of David.

28  To you, O Lord, I call;

jmy rock, be not deaf to me,

lest, if you kbe silent to me,

I become like those who lgo down to the pit.

mHear the voice of my pleas for mercy,

when I cry to you for help,

when I nlift up my hands

otoward your most holy sanctuary.8

Do not pdrag me off with the wicked,

with the workers of evil,

qwho speak peace with their neighbors

while evil is in their hearts.

rGive to them according to their work

and according to the evil of their deeds;

give to them according to the work of their hands;

srender them their due reward.

Because they tdo not regard the works of the Lord

or the work of his hands,

he will tear them down and build them up no more.

Blessed be the Lord!

For he has uheard the voice of my pleas for mercy.

The Lord is my strength and vmy shield;

in him my heart wtrusts, and I am helped;

my heart exults,

and with my xsong I give thanks to him.

The Lord is the strength of his people;9

he is ythe saving refuge of his anointed.

Oh, save your people and bless zyour heritage!

aBe their shepherd and bcarry them forever.


The Jerusalem Council

15 yBut some men came down from Judea and were teaching zthe brothers, Unless you are acircumcised baccording to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved. And after Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and cdebate with them, Paul and Barnabas and dsome of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to ethe apostles and the elders about this question. So, fbeing sent on their way by the church, they passed through both Phoenicia and Samaria, gdescribing in detail the conversion of the Gentiles, and hbrought great joy to all ithe brothers.1 jWhen they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and kthe apostles and the elders, and gthey declared all that God had done with them. But some believers who belonged to lthe party of the Pharisees rose up and said, mIt is necessary nto circumcise them and to order them to keep the law of Moses.

oThe kapostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. And after there had been much pdebate, Peter stood up and said to them, Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, qthat by my mouth the Gentiles should hear rthe word of sthe gospel and believe. And God, twho knows the heart, ubore witness to them, vby giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, and whe made no distinction between us and them, xhaving cleansed their hearts yby faith. 10 Now, therefore, why zare you putting God to the test aby placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples bthat neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11 But we cbelieve that we will be dsaved through ethe grace of the Lord Jesus, wjust as they will.

12 And all the assembly fell silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul fas they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. 13 After they finished speaking, gJames replied, Brothers, listen to me. 14 hSimeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take from them ia people for his name. 15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written,

16  jAfter this I will return,

and I will rebuild the tent of David that has fallen;

I will rebuild its ruins,

and I will restore it,

17  that the remnant2 of mankind kmay seek the Lord,

and all the Gentiles lwho are called by my name,

says the Lord, who makes these things 18 mknown from of old.

19 Therefore nmy judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who oturn to God, 20 but should write to them pto abstain from qthe things polluted by idols, and from rsexual immorality, and from swhat has been strangled, and from sblood. 21 For from ancient generations Moses has had in every city those who proclaim him, tfor he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues.