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Job chapter 11

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Then Zophar the Na'amathite answered:
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"Should a multitude of words go unanswered, and a man full of talk be vindicated?
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Should your babble silence men, and when you mock, shall no one shame you?
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For you say, `r you say, "My doctrine is pure, and I am clean in God's eyes.'
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But oh, that God would speak, and open his lips to you,
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and that he would tell you the secrets of wisdom! For he is manifold in understanding. Know then that God exacts of you less than your guilt deserves.
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"Can you find out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limit of the Almighty?
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It is higher than heaven --what can you do? Deeper than Sheol--what can you know?
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Its measure is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea.
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If he passes through, and imprisons, and calls to judgment, who can hinder him?
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For he knows worthless men; when he sees iniquity, will he not consider it?
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But a stupid man will get understanding, when a wild ass's colt is born a man.
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"If you set your heart aright, you will stretch out your hands toward him.
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If iniquity is in your hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in your tents.
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Surely then you will lift up your face without blemish; you will be secure, and will not fear.
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You will forget your misery; you will remember it as waters that have passed away.
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And your life will be brighter than the noonday; its darkness will be like the morning.
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And you will have confidence, because there is hope; you will be protected and take your rest in safety.
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You will lie down, and none will make you afraid; many will entreat your favor.
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But the eyes of the wicked will fail; all way of escape will be lost to them, and their hope is to breathe their last."

Job chapter 12

1
Then Job answered:
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"No doubt you are the people, and wisdom will die with you.
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But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Who does not know such things as these?
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I am a laughingstock to my friends; I, who called upon God and he answered me, a just and blameless man, am a laughingstock.
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In the thought of one who is at ease there is contempt for misfortune; it is ready for those whose feet slip.
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The tents of robbers are at peace, and those who provoke God are secure, who bring their god in their hand.
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"But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
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or the plants of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
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Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this?
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In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.
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Does not the ear try words as the palate tastes food?
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Wisdom is with the aged, and understanding in length of days.
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"With God are wisdom and might; he has counsel and understanding.
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If he tears down, none can rebuild; if he shuts a man in, none can open.
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If he withholds the waters, they dry up; if he sends them out, they overwhelm the land.
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With him are strength and wisdom; the deceived and the deceiver are his.
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He leads counselors away stripped, and judges he makes fools.
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He looses the bonds of kings, and binds a waistcloth on their loins.
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He leads priests away stripped, and overthrows the mighty.
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He deprives of speech those who are trusted, and takes away the discernment of the elders.
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He pours contempt on princes, and looses the belt of the strong.
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He uncovers the deeps out of darkness, and brings deep darkness to light.
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He makes nations great, and he destroys them: he enlarges nations, and leads them away.
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He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth, and makes them wander in a pathless waste.
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They grope in the dark without light; and he makes them stagger like a drunken man.

Acts chapter 15

1
But some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brethren, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved."
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And when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and debate with them, Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and the elders about this question.
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So, being sent on their way by the church, they passed through both Phoeni'cia and Sama'ria, reporting the conversion of the Gentiles, and they gave great joy to all the brethren.
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When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and the elders, and they declared all that God had done with them.
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But some believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees rose up, and said, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to charge them to keep the law of Moses."
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The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter.
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And after there had been much debate, Peter rose and said to them, "Brethren, you know that in the early days God made choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.
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And God who knows the heart bore witness to them, giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us;
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and he made no distinction between us and them, but cleansed their hearts by faith.
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Now therefore why do you make trial of God by putting a yoke upon the neck of the disciples which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear?
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But we believe that we shall be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will."
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And all the assembly kept silence; and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles.
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After they finished speaking, James replied, "Brethren, listen to me.
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Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.
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And with this the words of the prophets agree, as it is written,
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`After this I will return, and I will rebuild the dwelling of David, which has fallen; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will set it up,
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that the rest of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who are called by my name,
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says the Lord, who has made these things known from of old.'
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Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God,
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but should write to them to abstain from the pollutions of idols and from unchastity and from what is strangled and from blood.
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For from early generations Moses has had in every city those who preach him, for he is read every sabbath in the synagogues."
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Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsab'bas, and Silas, leading men among the brethren,
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with the following letter: "The brethren, both the apostles and the elders, to the brethren who are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cili'cia, greeting.
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Since we have heard that some persons from us have troubled you with words, unsettling your minds, although we gave them no instructions,
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it has seemed good to us, having come to one accord, to choose men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
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men who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.
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We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth.
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For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things:
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that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from unchastity. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell."
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So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch; and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter.
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And when they read it, they rejoiced at the exhortation.
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And Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, exhorted the brethren with many words and strengthened them.
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And after they had spent some time, they were sent off in peace by the brethren to those who had sent them.
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But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.
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And after some days Paul said to Barnabas, "Come, let us return and visit the brethren in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they are."
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And Barnabas wanted to take with them John called Mark.
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But Paul thought best not to take with them one who had withdrawn from them in Pamphyl'ia, and had not gone with them to the work.
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And there arose a sharp contention, so that they separated from each other; Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus,
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but Paul chose Silas and departed, being commended by the brethren to the grace of the Lord.
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And he went through Syria and Cili'cia, strengthening the churches.

Acts chapter 16

1
And he came also to Derbe and to Lystra. A disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a Jewish woman who was a believer; but his father was a Greek.
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He was well spoken of by the brethren at Lystra and Ico'nium.
3
Paul wanted Timothy to accompany him; and he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews that were in those places, for they all knew that his father was a Greek.
4
As they went on their way through the cities, they delivered to them for observance the decisions which had been reached by the apostles and elders who were at Jerusalem.
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So the churches were strengthened in the faith, and they increased in numbers daily.
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And they went through the region of Phry'gia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia.
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And when they had come opposite My'sia, they attempted to go into Bithyn'ia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them;
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so, passing by My'sia, they went down to Tro'as.
9
And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedo'nia was standing beseeching him and saying, "Come over to Macedo'nia and help us."
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And when he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedo'nia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.
11
Setting sail therefore from Tro'as, we made a direct voyage to Sam'othrace, and the following day to Ne-ap'olis,
12
and from there to Philip'pi, which is the leading city of the district of Macedo'nia, and a Roman colony. We remained in this city some days;
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and on the sabbath day we went outside the gate to the riverside, where we supposed there was a place of prayer; and we sat down and spoke to the women who had come together.
14
One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyati'ra, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to give heed to what was said by Paul.
15
And when she was baptized, with her household, she besought us, saying, "If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay." And she prevailed upon us.
16
As we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit of divination and brought her owners much gain by soothsaying.
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She followed Paul and us, crying, "These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to you the way of salvation."
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And this she did for many days. But Paul was annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, "I charge you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her." And it came out that very hour.
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But when her owners saw that their hope of gain was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the market place before the rulers;
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and when they had brought them to the magistrates they said, "These men are Jews and they are disturbing our city.
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They advocate customs which it is not lawful for us Romans to accept or practice."
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The crowd joined in attacking them; and the magistrates tore the garments off them and gave orders to beat them with rods.
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And when they had inflicted many blows upon them, they threw them into prison, charging the jailer to keep them safely.
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Having received this charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.
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But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them,
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and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and every one's fetters were unfastened.
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When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped.
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But Paul cried with a loud voice, "Do not harm yourself, for we are all here."
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And he called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas,
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and brought them out and said, "Men, what must I do to be saved?"
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And they said, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household."
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And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all that were in his house.
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And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their wounds, and he was baptized at once, with all his family.
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Then he brought them up into his house, and set food before them; and he rejoiced with all his household that he had believed in God.
35
But when it was day, the magistrates sent the police, saying, "Let those men go."
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And the jailer reported the words to Paul, saying, "The magistrates have sent to let you go; now therefore come out and go in peace."
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But Paul said to them, "They have beaten us publicly, uncondemned, men who are Roman citizens, and have thrown us into prison; and do they now cast us out secretly? No! let them come themselves and take us out."
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The police reported these words to the magistrates, and they were afraid when they heard that they were Roman citizens;
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so they came and apologized to them. And they took them out and asked them to leave the city.
40
So they went out of the prison, and visited Lydia; and when they had seen the brethren, they exhorted them and departed.
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