1The Mighty One, God the LORD, speaks and sum- | mons the earth*
from the rising of the sun to its | setting.
2Out of Zion, the perfection of | beauty,*
God | shines forth.
3Our God comes; he does not keep | silence;*
before him is a devouring fire, around him a mighty | tempest.
4He calls to the heav- | ens above*
and to the earth, that he may judge his | people:
5“Gather to me my | faithful ones,*
who made a covenant with me by | sacrifice!”
6The heavens declare his | righteousness,*
for God him- | self is judge!
Additional Psalm: Psalm 113
Old Testament Reading: Joshua 10:1–25
The Sun Stands Still
1As soon as Adoni-zedek, king of Jerusalem, heard how Joshua had captured Ai and had devoted it to destruction, doing to Ai and its king as he had done to Jericho and its king, and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace with Israel and were among them, 2he feared greatly, because Gibeon was a great city, like one of the royal cities, and because it was greater than Ai, and all its men were warriors. 3So Adoni-zedek king of Jerusalem sent to Hoham king of Hebron, to Piram king of Jarmuth, to Japhia king of Lachish, and to Debir king of Eglon, saying, 4“Come up to me and help me, and let us strike Gibeon. For it has made peace with Joshua and with the people of Israel.” 5Then the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon, gathered their forces and went up with all their armies and encamped against Gibeon and made war against it.
6And the men of Gibeon sent to Joshua at the camp in Gilgal, saying, “Do not relax your hand from your servants. Come up to us quickly and save us and help us, for all the kings of the Amorites who dwell in the hill country are gathered against us.” 7So Joshua went up from Gilgal, he and all the people of war with him, and all the mighty men of valor. 8And the LORD said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands. Not a man of them shall stand before you.” 9So Joshua came upon them suddenly, having marched up all night from Gilgal. 10And the LORD threw them into a panic before Israel, who struck them with a great blow at Gibeon and chased them by the way of the ascent of Beth-horon and struck them as far as Azekah and Makkedah. 11And as they fled before Israel, while they were going down the ascent of Beth-horon, the LORD threw down large stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died. There were more who died because of the hailstones than the sons of Israel killed with the sword.
12At that time Joshua spoke to the LORD in the day when the LORD gave the Amorites over to the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel,
“Sun, stand still at Gibeon,
and moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
13And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,
until the nation took vengeance on their enemies.
Is this not written in the Book of Jashar? The sun stopped in the midst of heaven and did not hurry to set for about a whole day. 14There has been no day like it before or since, when the LORD heeded the voice of a man, for the LORD fought for Israel.
15So Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to the camp at Gilgal.
Five Amorite Kings Executed
16These five kings fled and hid themselves in the cave at Makkedah. 17And it was told to Joshua, “The five kings have been found, hidden in the cave at Makkedah.” 18And Joshua said, “Roll large stones against the mouth of the cave and set men by it to guard them, 19but do not stay there yourselves. Pursue your enemies; attack their rear guard. Do not let them enter their cities, for the LORD your God has given them into your hand.” 20When Joshua and the sons of Israel had finished striking them with a great blow until they were wiped out, and when the remnant that remained of them had entered into the fortified cities, 21then all the people returned safe to Joshua in the camp at Makkedah. Not a man moved his tongue against any of the people of Israel.
22Then Joshua said, “Open the mouth of the cave and bring those five kings out to me from the cave.” 23And they did so, and brought those five kings out to him from the cave, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon. 24And when they brought those kings out to Joshua, Joshua summoned all the men of Israel and said to the chiefs of the men of war who had gone with him, “Come near; put your feet on the necks of these kings.” Then they came near and put their feet on their necks. 25And Joshua said to them, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the LORD will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.”
Additional Reading: Joshua 10:28–22:34
New Testament Reading: Acts 11:19–30
The Church in Antioch
19Now those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose over Stephen traveled as far as Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except Jews. 20But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who on coming to Antioch spoke to the Hellenists also, preaching the Lord Jesus. 21And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a great number who believed turned to the Lord. 22The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. 23When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, 24for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. 25So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.
27Now in these days prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28And one of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine over all the world (this took place in the days of Claudius). 29So the disciples determined, everyone according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers living in Judea. 30And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul.
Beware of this: The poor man will come to you (there are so many now). He must buy things with the penny of his daily wages and live upon it. When you are harsh to him, as though everyone lived by your favor, and you skin and scrape him to the bone, and when you turn him away with pride and arrogance to whom you ought to give things without payment, he will go away wretched and sorrowful. Since he can complain to no one else, he will cry and call to heaven [Psalm 20:6; 146:8–9]. Then beware (I say again) as of the devil himself. For such groaning and calling will be no joke. It will have a weight that will prove too heavy for you and all the world. For it will reach Him who takes care of the poor, sorrowful hearts. He will not allow them to go unavenged [Isaiah 61:1–3]. But if you despise this and become defiant, see the One you have brought upon you. If you succeed and prosper, before all the world you may call God and me a liar.
—Large Catechism I 247
Whoever now seeks and desires good works will find here more than enough to do that are heartily acceptable and pleasing to God. In addition, they are favored and crowned with excellent blessings. So we are to be richly compensated for all that we do for our neighbor’s good and from friendship. King Solomon also teaches this in Proverbs 19:17, “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and He will repay him for his deed.” Here, then, you have a rich Lord. He is certainly enough for you. He will not allow you to come up short in anything or to lack [Psalm 37:25]. So you can with a joyful conscience enjoy a hundred times more than you could scrape together with unfaithfulness and wrong. Now, whoever does not desire this blessing will find enough wrath and misfortune.
—Large Catechism I 252–253
For Barnabas we praise You,
Who kept Your law of love
And, leaving earthly treasures,
Sought riches from above.
O Christ, our Lord and Savior,
Let gifts of grace descend,
That Your true consolation
May through the world extend.
—By All Your Saints in Warfare
Prayer of the Day
Merciful Lord, Your Church expanded from Jerusalem to Antioch, where those who believed in Jesus were first called Christians. Through Your servants Barnabas and Paul, Gentiles were evangelized and now called by Your name. Give us courage to speak Your name even in the face of persecution, so that all might hear Your Holy Word and come to the knowledge of the truth; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. (1048)
Suggested Reading from the Book of Concord
Augsburg Confession XXVI 21–45