Reading: Marriage not to hinder spiritual life
Reference: 1 Cor. 7:27–33
I Corinthians 7:27: Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife.
I Corinthians 7:28: But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you.
I Corinthians 7:29: But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none;
I Corinthians 7:30: And they that weep, as though they wept not; and they that rejoice, as though they rejoiced not; and they that buy, as though they possessed not;
I Corinthians 7:31: And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away.
I Corinthians 7:32: But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
I Corinthians 7:33: But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.
Reading: Joseph shields Mary from reproach
Reference: Matt. 1:18–25
Matthew 1:18: Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
Matthew 1:19: Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily.
Matthew 1:20: But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Matthew 1:21: And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
Matthew 1:22: Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
Matthew 1:23: Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
Matthew 1:24: Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:
Matthew 1:25: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.
Reading: A husband’s acquiescence to sin
Reference: Gen. 3:8–12
Genesis 3:8: And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.
Genesis 3:9: And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
Genesis 3:10: And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
Genesis 3:11: And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
Genesis 3:12: And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
Reading: Eve fails to heed God’s warning
Reference: Gen. 3:1–6
Genesis 3:1: Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
Genesis 3:2: And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
Genesis 3:3: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Genesis 3:4: And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
Genesis 3:5: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
Genesis 3:6: And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
Reading: Adam’s responsibility in the garden
Reference: Gen. 2:15–20
Genesis 2:15: And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
Genesis 2:16: And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
Genesis 2:17: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
Genesis 2:18: And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
Genesis 2:19: And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
Genesis 2:20: And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
Reading: After the victory, heaven
Reference: Rev. 22:1-5
Revelation of John 22:1: And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.
Revelation of John 22:2: In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
Revelation of John 22:3: And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him:
Revelation of John 22:4: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.
Revelation of John 22:5: And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.
Reading: Watchfulness and carefulness required
Reference: Rev. 3:1-5
Revelation of John 3:1: And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.
Revelation of John 3:2: Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God.
Revelation of John 3:3: Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
Revelation of John 3:4: Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.
Revelation of John 3:5: He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
Reading: Stephan’s final victory
Reference: Acts 7:55-60
Acts 7:55: But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
Acts 7:56: And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
Acts 7:57: Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,
Acts 7:58: And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.
Acts 7:59: And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
Acts 7:60: And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Reading: Rest in God at the end
Reference: Rev. 14:12-13
Revelation of John 14:12: Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
Revelation of John 14:13: And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.
Reading: “I have fought a good fight”
Reference: 2 Tim. 4:1-8
II Timothy 4:1: I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;
II Timothy 4:2: Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
II Timothy 4:3: For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
II Timothy 4:4: And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
II Timothy 4:5: But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.
II Timothy 4:6: For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
II Timothy 4:7: I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
II Timothy 4:8: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
Reading: Victory after a turbulent life
Reference: 2 Kings 2:1-12
II Kings 2:1: And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.
II Kings 2:2: And Elijah said unto Elisha, Tarry here, I pray thee; for the Lord hath sent me to Beth–el. And Elisha said unto him, As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they went down to Beth–el.
II Kings 2:3: And the sons of the prophets that were at Beth–el came forth to Elisha, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Lord will take away thy master from thy head to day? And he said, Yea, I know it; hold ye your peace.
II Kings 2:4: And Elijah said unto him, Elisha, tarry here, I pray thee; for the Lord hath sent me to Jericho. And he said, As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they came to Jericho.
II Kings 2:5: And the sons of the prophets that were at Jericho came to Elisha, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Lord will take away thy master from thy head to day? And he answered, Yea, I know it; hold ye your peace.
II Kings 2:6: And Elijah said unto him, Tarry, I pray thee, here; for the Lord hath sent me to Jordan. And he said, As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. And they two went on.
II Kings 2:7: And fifty men of the sons of the prophets went, and stood to view afar off: and they two stood by Jordan.
II Kings 2:8: And Elijah took his mantle, and wrapped it together, and smote the waters, and they were divided hither and thither, so that they two went over on dry ground.
II Kings 2:9: And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.
II Kings 2:10: And he said, Thou hast asked a hard thing: nevertheless, if thou see me when I am taken from thee, it shall be so unto thee; but if not, it shall not be so.
II Kings 2:11: And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
II Kings 2:12: And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more: and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces.