Psalms 31–32
For the Music Director. A Psalm of David.
1 In You, O Lord, do I seek refuge;
may I never be ashamed;
deliver me in Your righteousness.
2 Incline Your ear to me;
deliver me speedily;
be my strong rock,
a strong fortress to save me.
3 For You are my rock and my fortress;
for Your name’s sake lead me and guide me.
4 Lead me out of the net that they have hidden for me,
for You are my strength.
5 Into Your hand I commit my spirit;
You have redeemed me, O Lord, God of truth.
6 I have hated those who regard worthless vanity,
but I trust in the Lord.
7 I will be glad and rejoice in Your lovingkindness,
for You have seen my trouble;
You have known my soul in adversities,
8 and have not delivered me up into the hand of the enemy;
You have set my feet in a broad place.
9 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in trouble;
my eye wastes away with grief,
yes, my soul and my body.
10 For my life is spent with grief,
and my years with sighing;
my strength fails because of my iniquity,
and my bones waste away.
11 I became a reproach among all my enemies,
but especially among my neighbors,
and a dread to my acquaintances;
those who saw me outside fled from me.
12 I am forgotten as a dead man out of mind;
I am like a broken vessel.
13 For I have heard the slander of many;
fear was on every side;
while they took counsel together against me,
they planned to take away my life.
14 But I trusted in You, O Lord;
I said, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in Your hand;
deliver me from the hand of my enemies
and my pursuers.
16 Make Your face to shine on Your servant;
save me by Your lovingkindness.
17 Do not let me be ashamed, O Lord,
for I have called on You;
let the wicked be ashamed,
and let them be silent in the grave.
18 Let the lying lips be put to silence,
who speak arrogantly
in pride and contempt against the righteous.
19 Oh, how great is Your goodness,
which You have laid up for those who fear You,
which You have done for those
seeking refuge in You before people!
20 You will hide them in the secret of Your presence
from conspirators;
You will keep them secretly in a shelter
from the strife of tongues.
21 Blessed be the Lord,
for He has shown me His marvelous lovingkindness
in a fortified city.
22 For I said in my haste,
“I am cut off from before Your eyes.”
Nevertheless You heard the voice of my supplications
when I cried to You.
23 Oh, love the Lord, all you His saints,
for the Lord preserves the faithful,
but amply repays the one who acts in pride.
24 Be strong, and He will strengthen your heart,
all you who wait for the Lord.
Psalm 32
A Psalm of David. A Contemplative Maskil.
1 Blessed is he
whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is covered.
2 Blessed is the man
against whom the Lord does not count iniquity,
and in whose spirit there is no deceit.
3 When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
4 For day and night
Your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was changed
into the drought of summer. Selah
5 I acknowledged my sin to You,
and my iniquity I did not conceal.
I said, “I will confess
my transgressions to the Lord,”
and You forgave
the iniquity of my sin. Selah
6 For this cause everyone who is godly will pray to You
in a time when You may be found;
surely in the floods of great waters
they will not reach him.
7 You are my hiding place;
You will preserve me from trouble;
You will surround me with shouts of deliverance. Selah
8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my eye on you.
9 Do not be as the horse or as the mule
that are without understanding,
that must be restrained with bit and bridle,
or they will not come near you.
10 Many sorrows come to the wicked,
but lovingkindness will surround
the man who trusts in the Lord.
11 Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, you righteous one;
and shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart!
Acts 23:16–35
16 But when the son of Paul’s sister heard of the treachery, he went and entered the barracks and told Paul.
17 Then Paul called one of the centurions over and said, “Take this young man to the commander, for he has something to tell him.” 18 So he took him to the commander and said, “Paul the prisoner sent for me and asked me to bring you this young man who has something to tell you.”
19 Then the commander took him by the hand, went aside privately, and asked him, “What is it you have to tell me?”
20 The boy said, “The Jews have agreed to ask you to bring Paul down tomorrow to the Sanhedrin, pretending to inquire further concerning him. 21 Do not trust them. More than forty men, who have bound themselves with an oath to neither eat nor drink until they have killed him, are waiting for him. And now they are ready, waiting for your promise.”
22 The commander dismissed the young man and ordered him, “Tell no one that you have reported these things to me.”
23 Then he summoned two centurions and said, “Prepare two hundred infantrymen, seventy mounted soldiers, and two hundred light infantrymen with spears to go to Caesarea at the third hour of the night. 24 And provide mounts so Paul may ride and take him safely to Felix the governor.”
25 He wrote a letter that went like this:
26 Claudius Lysias,
To His Excellency Governor Felix:
27 This man was seized by the Jews and was about to be killed by them. When I learned that he was a Roman citizen, I came with soldiers and rescued him. 28 Being minded to learn what crime they alleged, I took him to their Sanhedrin. 29 I found him being accused of controversial matters about their law, but charged with nothing worthy of death or imprisonment. 30 When it was revealed to me that there was a plot against the man, at once I sent him to you and ordered the accusers to state before you their charges against him.
31 So the soldiers, according to their orders, took Paul by night to Antipatris. 32 The next day they let the cavalry depart with him and they returned to the barracks. 33 When they arrived in Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they presented Paul also to him. 34 Upon reading the letter, the governor asked what province he was from. When he learned that he was from Cilicia, 35 he said, “I will hear you when your accusers also arrive.” And he ordered that he be guarded in Herod’s Praetorium.