The Daily Audio Bible Reading for Friday November 8, 2019 (NIV)

Ezekiel 18-19

Those Who Sin Will Die

18 The Lord said:

Ezekiel, I hear the people of Israel using the old saying,

“Sour grapes eaten by parents
leave a sour taste
in the mouths
of their children.”

Now tell them that I am the Lord God, and as surely as I live, that saying will no longer be used in Israel. The lives of all people belong to me—parents as well as children. Only those who sin will be put to death.

Suppose there is a truly good man who always does what is fair and right. He refuses to eat meat sacrificed to foreign gods at local shrines or to worship Israel’s idols. He doesn’t have sex with someone else’s wife or with a woman having her monthly period. He never cheats or robs anyone and always returns anything taken as security for a loan; he gives food and clothes to the poor and doesn’t charge interest when lending money. He refuses to do anything evil; he is fair to everyone and faithfully obeys my laws and teachings. This man is good, and I promise he will live.

10 But suppose this good man has an evil son who is violent and commits sins 11 his father never did. He eats meat at local shrines, has sex with someone else’s wife, 12 cheats the poor, and robs people. He keeps what is given to him as security for a loan. He worships idols, does disgusting things, 13 and charges high interest when lending money. An evil man like that will certainly not live. He is the one who has done these horrible sins, so it’s his own fault that he will be put to death.

14 But suppose this evil man has a son who sees his father do these things and refuses to act like him. 15 He doesn’t eat meat at local shrines or worship Israel’s idols, and he doesn’t have sex with someone else’s wife. 16 He never cheats or robs anyone and doesn’t even demand security for a loan. He gives food and clothes to the poor 17 and refuses to do anything evil[a] or to charge interest. And he obeys all my laws and teachings. Such a man will live. His own father sinned, but this good man will not be put to death for the sins of his father. 18 It is his father who will die for cheating and robbing and doing evil.

19 You may wonder why a son isn’t punished for the sins of his father. It is because the son does what is right and obeys my laws. 20 Only those who sin will be put to death. Children won’t suffer for the sins of their parents, and parents won’t suffer for the sins of their children. Good people will be rewarded for what they do, and evil people will be punished for what they do.

21 Suppose wicked people stop sinning and start obeying my laws and doing right. They won’t be put to death. 22 All their sins will be forgiven, and they will live because they did right. 23 I, the Lord God, don’t like to see wicked people die. I enjoy seeing them turn from their sins and live.

24 But when good people start sinning and doing disgusting things, will they live? No! All their good deeds will be forgotten, and they will be put to death because of their sins.

25 You people of Israel accuse me of being unfair! But listen—I’m not unfair; you are! 26 If good people start doing evil, they must be put to death, because they have sinned. 27 And if wicked people start doing right, they will save themselves from punishment. 28 They will think about what they’ve done and stop sinning, and so they won’t be put to death. 29 But you still say that I am unfair. You are the ones who have done wrong and are unfair!

30 I will judge each of you for what you’ve done. So stop sinning, or else you will certainly be punished. 31 Give up your evil ways and start thinking pure thoughts. And be faithful to me! Do you really want to be put to death for your sins? 32 I, the Lord God, don’t want to see that happen to anyone. So stop sinning and live!

A Funeral Song for Israel’s Leaders

The Lord said:

19 Ezekiel, sing a funeral song for two of Israel’s leaders:[b]

Your mother was a brave lioness
who raised her cubs
among lions.
She taught one of them to hunt,
and he learned to eat people.
When the nations heard of him,
they trapped him in a pit,
then they used hooks
to drag him to Egypt.

His mother waited
for him to return.
But soon she lost all hope
and raised another cub,
who also became fierce.
He hunted with other lions
and learned to eat people.
He destroyed fortresses[c]
and ruined towns;
his mighty roar
terrified everyone.
Nations plotted to kill him,
and people came from all over
to spread out a net
and catch him in a trap.
They put him in a cage
and took him to Babylonia.
The lion was locked away,
so that his mighty roar
would never again be heard
on Israel’s hills.

10 Your mother was a vine[d]
growing near a stream.
There was plenty of water,
so she was filled with branches
and with lots of fruit.
11 Her strong branches
became symbols of authority,
and she was taller
than all other trees—
everyone could see how strong
and healthy she was.
12 But in anger, I pulled her up
by the roots
and threw her to the ground,
where the scorching desert wind
dried out her fruit.
Her strong branches wilted
and burned up.
13 Then she was planted
in a hot, dry desert,
14 where her stem caught fire,
and flames burned
her branches and fruit.
Not one strong branch is left;
she is stripped bare.

This funeral song must be sung with sorrow.


  1. 18.17 evil: One ancient translation; Hebrew “for the poor.”
  2. 19.1 two of Israel’s leaders: Probably Jehoahaz (ruled three months in 609 B.C.) and Jehoiachin (ruled three months in 598 B.C.) or Zedekiah (598-586 B.C.).
  3. 19.7 He destroyed fortresses: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  4. 19.10 Your mother was a vine: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

Hebrews 9:1-10

The Tent in Heaven

The first promise that was made included rules for worship and a tent for worship here on earth. The first part of the tent was called the holy place, and a lampstand, a table, and the sacred loaves of bread were kept there.

Behind the curtain was the most holy place. The gold altar that was used for burning incense was in this holy place. The gold-covered sacred chest was also there, and inside it were three things. First, there was a gold jar filled with manna.[a] Then there was Aaron’s walking stick that sprouted.[b] Finally, there were the flat stones with the Ten Commandments written on them. On top of the chest were the glorious creatures with wings[c] opened out above the place of mercy.[d]

Now isn’t the time to go into detail about these things. But this is how everything was when the priests went each day into the first part of the tent to do their duties. However, only the high priest could go into the second part of the tent, and he went in only once a year. Each time he carried blood to offer for his sins and for any sins that the people had committed without meaning to.

All of this is the Holy Spirit’s way of saying that no one could enter the most holy place while the tent was still the place of worship. This also has a meaning for today. It shows that we cannot make our consciences clear by offering gifts and sacrifices. 10 These rules are merely about such things as eating and drinking and ceremonies for washing ourselves. And rules about physical things will last only until the time comes to change them for something better.


  1. 9.4 manna: When the people of Israel were wandering through the desert, the Lord provided them with food that could be made into thin wafers. This food was called manna, which in Hebrew means “What is it?”
  2. 9.4 Aaron’s walking stick that sprouted: According to Numbers 17.1-11, Aaron’s walking stick sprouted and produced almonds to show that the Lord was pleased with him and Moses.
  3. 9.5 glorious creatures with wings: Two of these creatures (called “cherubim” in Hebrew and Greek) with outspread wings were on top of the sacred chest and were symbols of God’s throne.
  4. 9.5 place of mercy: The lid of the sacred chest, which was thought to be God’s throne on earth.

Psalm 106:32-48

32 At Meribah Spring[a]
they turned against you
and made you furious.
33 Then Moses got into trouble
for speaking in anger.

34 Our Lord, they disobeyed you
by refusing to destroy
the nations.
35 Instead they were friendly
with those foreigners
and followed their customs.
36 Then they fell into the trap
of worshiping idols.
37 They sacrificed their sons
and their daughters
to demons
38 and to the gods of Canaan.
Then they poured out the blood
of these innocent children
and made the land filthy.
39 By doing such gruesome things,
they also became filthy.

40 Finally, Lord, you were angry
and terribly disgusted
with your people.
41 So you put them in the power
of nations
that hated them.
42 They were mistreated and abused
by their enemies,
43 but you saved them
time after time.
They were determined to rebel,
and their sins caused
their downfall.

44 You answered their prayers
when they were in trouble.
45 You kept your agreement
and were so merciful
46 that their enemies
had pity on them.

47 Save us, Lord God!
Bring us back
from among the nations.
Let us celebrate and shout
in praise of your holy name.

48 Lord God of Israel,
you deserve to be praised
forever and ever.
Let everyone say, “Amen!
Shout praises to the Lord!”


  1. 106.32 Meribah Spring: See the note at 81.7.

Proverbs 27:10

10 Don’t desert an old friend
of your family
or visit your relatives
when you are in trouble.
A friend nearby is better
than relatives far away.