Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Read the Bible with Me!

Welcome to the Pauline Family's "Year of the Bible"! I'm reading the Bible clear through this year, and I invite you to read along with me. But first, let us pray: 

My God, I adore and thank your loving and wise Providence, manifested on every page of Sacred Scripture. You have always been close to sinful and erring humanity, and have indicated the way and given hope. Amid the shadows of error and corruption, you kindled the light of your truth; amid universal corruption, you are the Just One; amid so much idolatry, humanity in every corner of the earth has cultivated a sincere worship of you.
Let my reading today increase my trust in your goodness, your mercy, and your unfailing faithfulness.

Today's chapters are 2 Samuel 16-18 and (for Lent) Psalm 41.

The revolt against David by his son Absalom reaches new lows with the son assuming control of his father's harem, and then the two armies face off in battle. Even in the thick of war David insists that his soldiers do no harm to "young Absalom."

Psalm 41 is another fitting psalm for our reading, since it refers to a "trusted friend who...raised his heel against me" and an "enemy who no longer shouts in triumph over me." The psalm is the final one in the first "book" of the Psalter, often called the book of the Laments of King David. (Each of the five "books" of the Psalter ends with an expression of praise and a double "Amen.")

Start reading here 2 Samuel here and Psalm 41 here.

If you are looking for a solid but approachable companion to the Bible, I can wholeheartedly recommend A Catholic Introduction to the Bible: The Old Testament by John Bergsma and Brant Pitre. Although the authors are top-level Scripture scholars, they write for "real" readers. Notes include recent findings from archaeology and ancient manuscripts, and how each book of the Bible has been understood by the Church Fathers and used in Liturgy.

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