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ESV — M'Cheyne One-Year Reading Plan: Day 295
295
With family
2 Kings 2; 2 Thessalonians 2

In private
Daniel 6; Psalm 48

Elijah Taken to Heaven

Now when the Lord was about to mtake Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind, Elijah and nElisha were on their way from oGilgal. And Elijah said to Elisha, p“Please stay here, for the Lord has sent me as far as Bethel.” But Elisha said, q“As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel. And rthe sons of the prophets who were in Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord will take away your master from over you?” And he said, “Yes, I know it; keep quiet.”

Elijah said to him, “Elisha, pplease stay here, for the Lord has sent me to tJericho.” But he said, q“As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they came to Jericho. rThe sons of the prophets who were at Jericho drew near to Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord will take away your master from over you?” And he answered, “Yes, I know it; keep quiet.”

Then Elijah said to him, p“Please stay here, for the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.” But he said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them went on. Fifty men of rthe sons of the prophets also went and stood at some distance from them, as they both were standing by the Jordan. Then Elijah utook his cloak and rolled it up and struck the water, vand the water was parted to the one side and to the other, till the two of them could go over on dry ground.

When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask what I shall do for you, before I am taken from you.” And Elisha said, “Please let there be a double portion of your spirit on me.” 10 And he said, “You have asked a hard thing; yet, if you see me as I am being taken from you, it shall be so for you, but if you do not see me, it shall not be so.” 11 And as they still went on and talked, behold, wchariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. 12 And Elisha saw it and he cried, “My father, my father! xThe chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw him no more.

Then he took hold of his own clothes yand tore them in two pieces. 13 And he took up the cloak of Elijah that had fallen from him and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. 14 Then he took the cloak of Elijah that had fallen from him and struck the water, saying, “Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?” And when he had struck the water, vthe water was parted to the one side and to the other, and Elisha went over.

Elisha Succeeds Elijah

15 Now when rthe sons of the prophets who were at Jericho saw him opposite them, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” And they came to meet him and bowed to the ground before him. 16 And they said to him, “Behold now, there are with your servants fifty strong men. Please let them go and seek your master. It may be that zthe Spirit of the Lord has caught him up and cast him upon some mountain or into some valley.” And he said, “You shall not send.” 17 But when they urged him atill he was ashamed, he said, “Send.” They sent therefore fifty men. And for three days they sought him but did not find him. 18 And they came back to him while he was staying at Jericho, and he said to them, “Did I not say to you, ‘Do not go’?”

19 Now the men of the city said to Elisha, “Behold, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees, but the water is bad, and the land is unfruitful.” 20 He said, “Bring me a new bowl, and put salt in it.” So they brought it to him. 21 Then he went to the spring of water and bthrew salt in it and said, “Thus says the Lord, I have healed this water; from now on neither death nor miscarriage shall come from it.” 22 So the water has been healed to this day, according to the word that Elisha spoke.

23 He went up from there to Bethel, and while he was going up on the way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him, saying, “Go up, you baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!” 24 And he turned around, and when he saw them, che cursed them in the name of the Lord. And two she-bears came out of the woods and tore forty-two of the boys. 25 From there he went on to dMount Carmel, and from there he returned eto Samaria.


The Man of Lawlessness

Now concerning athe coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our bbeing gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers,1 not to be quickly shaken in mind or calarmed, either dby a spirit or a espoken word, or ea letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that fthe day of the Lord has come. gLet no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, hunless the rebellion comes first, and ithe man of lawlessness2 is revealed, jthe son of destruction,3 who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, kproclaiming himself to be God. Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And you know what is restraining him now so that he may be revealed in his time. For lthe mystery of lawlessness mis already at work. Only he who now restrains it will do so until he is out of the way. And then nthe lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus owill kill with pthe breath of his mouth and bring to nothing by qthe appearance of his coming. The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan rwith all power and false signs and wonders, 10 and with all wicked deception for sthose who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 Therefore tGod sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe uwhat is false, 12 in order that all may be condemned vwho did not believe the truth but whad pleasure in unrighteousness.

Stand Firm

13 But xwe ought always to give thanks to God for you, ybrothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you zas the firstfruits4 ato be saved, bthrough sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth. 14 To this he called you through cour gospel, aso that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15 So then, brothers, dstand firm and hold to ethe traditions that you were taught by us, either fby our spoken word or by four letter.

16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, gwho loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hhope through grace, 17 comfort your hearts and iestablish them in every good work and word.

Footnotes

[1] 2:1 Or brothers and sisters; also verses 13, 15
[2] 2:3 Some manuscripts sin
[3] 2:3 Greek the son of perdition (a Hebrew idiom)
[4] 2:13 Some manuscripts chose you from the beginning


Daniel and the Lions' Den

It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom q120 rsatraps, to be throughout the whole kingdom; and over them sthree high officials, of whom Daniel was one, to whom these rsatraps should give account, so that the king might suffer no loss. Then this Daniel became tdistinguished above all sthe other high officials and rsatraps, because uan excellent spirit was in him. And the king planned vto set him over the whole kingdom. Then sthe high officials and rthe satraps wsought to find a ground for complaint against Daniel with regard to the kingdom, xbut they could find no ground for complaint or any fault, because he was faithful, xand no error or fault was found in him. Then these men said, “We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.”

Then these shigh officials and rsatraps came by agreement1 to the king and said to him, “O yKing Darius, live forever! All the shigh officials of the kingdom, the prefects and the satraps, the zcounselors and the governors are agreed that the king should establish an ordinance and enforce an ainjunction, that whoever makes petition to any god or man for thirty days, except to you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions. Now, O king, establish athe injunction and sign the document, so that it cannot be changed, according to bthe law of cthe Medes and the Persians, dwhich cannot be revoked.” Therefore King Darius signed the document and ainjunction.

10 When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where ehe had windows in his upper chamber open ftoward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees gthree times a day and prayed and hgave thanks before his God, as he had done previously. 11 Then these men came by agreement and found Daniel making petition and plea before his God. 12 Then they icame near and said before the king, concerning the injunction, “O king! Did you not sign jan injunction, that anyone who makes petition to any god or man within thirty days except to you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions?” The king answered and said, “The thing stands fast, according to the law of cthe Medes and Persians, dwhich cannot be revoked.” 13 Then they answered and said before the king, k“Daniel, who is one lof the exiles kfrom Judah, mpays no attention to you, O king, or jthe injunction you have signed, but makes his petition gthree times a day.”

14 Then nthe king, when he heard these words, nwas much distressed and set his mind to deliver Daniel. And he labored till the sun went down to rescue him. 15 Then these men came by agreement to the king and said to the king, “Know, O king, that it is a law of the Medes and Persians that no jinjunction or ordinance that the king establishes can be changed.”

16 Then the king commanded, and Daniel was brought and cast into the den of lions. The king declared2 to Daniel, “May oyour God, whom you serve continually, deliver you!” 17 pAnd a stone was brought and laid on the mouth of the den, qand the king sealed it rwith his own signet and with the signet of his slords, that nothing might be changed concerning Daniel. 18 Then the king went to his palace and spent the night fasting; tno diversions were brought to him, and usleep fled from him.

19 Then, at break of day, the king arose and went in haste to the den of lions. 20 As he came near to the den where Daniel was, he cried out in a tone of anguish. The king declared to Daniel, “O Daniel, servant of vthe living God, ohas your God, whom you serve continually, wbeen able to deliver you from the lions?” 21 Then Daniel said to the king, x“O king, live forever! 22 My God ysent his angel zand shut the lions' mouths, and they have not harmed me, because I was found blameless abefore him; aand also before you, O king, I have done no harm.” 23 Then the king was exceedingly glad, and commanded that Daniel be taken up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and bno kind of harm was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. 24 And the king commanded, and cthose men who had maliciously accused Daniel were brought and cast into the den of lions—they, their children, and their wives. And before they reached the bottom of the den, the lions overpowered them and broke all their bones in pieces.

25 Then King Darius wrote to all dthe peoples, nations, and languages ethat dwell in all the earth: f“Peace be multiplied to you. 26 gI make a decree, that in all my royal dominion hpeople are to tremble and fear before the God of Daniel,

for ihe is jthe living God,

enduring forever;

his kingdom shall never be destroyed,

jand his dominion shall be kto the end.

27  He delivers and rescues;

he works lsigns and wonders

in heaven and on earth,

he who has msaved Daniel

from the power of the lions.”

28 So this Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and nthe reign of oCyrus the Persian.

Footnotes

[1] 6:6 Or came thronging; also verses 11, 15
[2] 6:16 Aramaic answered and said; also verse 20


Zion, the City of Our God

A Song. A Psalm of kthe Sons of Korah.

48  lGreat is the Lord and greatly to be praised

in mthe city of our God!

His nholy mountain, obeautiful in elevation,

is pthe joy of all the earth,

Mount Zion, in the far north,

qthe city of the great King.

Within her citadels God

has made himself known as a fortress.

For behold, rthe kings assembled;

they came on together.

As soon as they saw it, they were astounded;

they were in panic; they took to flight.

sTrembling took hold of them there,

anguish tas of a woman in labor.

By uthe east wind you vshattered

the ships of wTarshish.

As we have heard, so have we seen

in the city of the Lord of hosts,

in mthe city of our God,

which God will xestablish forever. Selah

We have thought on your ysteadfast love, O God,

in the midst of your temple.

10  As your zname, O God,

so your praise reaches to athe ends of the earth.

Your right hand is filled with righteousness.

11  Let Mount bZion be glad!

Let bthe daughters of Judah rejoice

because of your judgments!

12  Walk about Zion, go around her,

number her towers,

13  consider well her cramparts,

go through her citadels,

dthat you may tell the next generation

14  that this is God,

our God forever and ever.

He will eguide us forever.1

Footnotes

[1] 48:14 Septuagint; another reading is (compare Jerome, Syriac) He will guide us beyond death