Quotes and Readings of the Day
"Come down and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; sit on the ground without a throne, O daughter of the Chalde'ans!
For you shall no more be called tender and delicate. Take the millstones and grind meal, put off your veil, strip off your robe, uncover your legs, pass through the rivers. Your nakedness shall be uncovered, and your shame shall be seen.
I will take vengeance, and I will spare no man."
"Our Redeemer -- the LORD of hosts is his name -- is the Holy One of Israel. Sit in silence, and go into darkness, O daughter of the Chalde'ans; for you shall no more be called the mistress of kingdoms. I was angry with my people, I profaned my heritage;
I gave them into your hand, you showed them no mercy;
on the aged you made your yoke exceedingly heavy. You said, "I shall be mistress for ever," so that you did not lay these things to heart or remember their end. Now therefore hear this, you lover of pleasures, who sit securely, who say in your heart,
"I am, and there is no one besides me; I shall not sit as a widow
or know the loss of children":
"These two things shall come to you in a moment, in one day; the loss of children and widowhood shall come upon you in full measure, in spite of your many sorceries and the great power of your enchantments. You felt secure in your wickedness, you said, "No one sees me"; your wisdom and your knowledge
led you astray, and you said in your heart, "I am, and there is no one besides me." But evil shall come upon you, for which you cannot atone; disaster shall fall upon you, which you will not be able to expiate; and ruin shall come on you suddenly, of which you know nothing."
"Stand fast in your enchantments and your many sorceries, with which you have labored from your youth; perhaps you may be able to succeed, perhaps you may inspire terror. You are wearied with your many counsels; let them stand forth and save you, those who divide the heavens, who gaze at the stars, who at the new moons predict what shall befall you. Behold, they are like stubble,
the fire consumes them; they cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame. No coal for warming oneself is this,
no fire to sit before! Such to you are those with whom you have labored, who have trafficked with you from your youth; they wander about each in his own direction; there is no one to save you."
Note: Today's Gospel reading is John 5:2-18. Find a Bible translation at this address:
From the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1946, 1952, 1971 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by permission
Then Balak said to Balaam, "Come now, I will take you to another place. Perhaps God will deem it right that you damn them for me there." Balak took Balaam to the peak of Peor, which overlooks the wasteland. Balaam said to Balak, "Build me here seven altars, and have seven bulls and seven rams ready for me here." Balak did as Balaam said: he offered up a bull and a ram on each altar.
Now Balaam, seeing that it pleased the Lord to bless Israel, did not, as on previous occasions, go in search of omens, but turned his face toward the wilderness. As Balaam looked up and saw Israel encamped tribe by tribe, the spirit of God came upon him. Taking up his theme, he said:
Word of Balaam son of Beor,
Word of the man whose eye is true,
Word of him who hears God's speech,
Who beholds visions from the Almighty,
Prostrate, but with eyes unveiled:
How fair are your tents, O Jacob,
Your dwellings, O Israel!
Like palm-groves that stretch out,
Like gardens beside a river,
Like aloes planted by the Lord,
Like cedars beside the water;
Their boughs drip with moisture,
Their roots have abundant water.
Their king shall rise above Agag,
Their kingdom shall be exalted.
God who freed them from Egypt
Is for them like the horns of the wild ox.
They shall devour enemy nations,
Crush their bones,
And smash their arrows.
They crouch, they lie down like a lion,
Like the king of beasts; who dare rouse them?
Blessed are they who bless you,
Accursed they who curse you!
Enraged at Balaam, Balak struck his hands together. "I called you," Balak said to Balaam, "to damn my enemies, and instead you have blessed them these three times! Back with you at once to your own place! I was going to reward you richly, but the Lord has denied you the reward." Balaam replied to Balak, "But I even told the messengers you sent to me, 'Though Balak were to give me his house full of silver and gold, I could not of my own accord do anything good or bad contrary to the Lord's command. What the Lord says, that I must say.'
From Parshat Balak. From THE TANAKH: The New JPS Translation According to the Traditional Hebrew Text. Copyright 1985 by the Jewish Publication Society. Used by permission.
Angel Quote of the Day
Who if I cried out, would hear me among the angels' hierarchies? and even if one of them pressed me suddenly against his heart: I would be consumed in that overwhelming existence.
-Rainer Maria Rilke,
From "Angels Around Us." Compiled by Karen Maguire. Reprinted by arrangement with Andrews McMeel Publishing.
Buddhist Quote of the Day
Sitting peacefully on a cushion day and night seeking to attain Buddhahood, rejecting life and death in hopes of realizing enlightenment, is all like a monkey grasping at the moon reflected in the water.
From "The Pocket Zen Reader," edited by Thomas Cleary, 1999. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Boston, www.shambhala.com.
Celebrity Quote of the Day
Christian Quote of the Day
The twelve days of Christmas come to an end on January 6, and the season of the Epiphany begins...Epiphany not only ends Christmas, it also fulfills it by celebrating the revelation of the Christ to the whole world...
-Phyllis A. Tickle, "What the Heart Already Knows"
Eco-Tip of the Day
Emotional Health Quote of the Day
Evangelical Quote of the Day
Health Quote of the Day
Hindu Quote of the Day
I am forever pure. What is illusion, Or the world? What is the little soul, Or God Himself? One without two, I am always the same. I sit in my heart.
Ashtavakra Gita 20:11-12
From "The Heart of Awareness: A Translation of the Ashtavakra Gita," by Thomas Byrom, 1990. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc., Boston. www.shambhala.com.
Holistic Living Quote of the Day
Inspiration Quote of the Day
Judaism Quote of the Day
To work on oneself, to make clear that which confuses and depresses us, even if it entails the greatest pain--that is what is meant by being good.
-Rahel Levin Varnhagen, "Briefe," 1877
Reprinted from 'A Treasury of Jewish Quotations,'edited by Joseph L. Baron, Jason Aronson Inc.
Muslim Quote of the Day
Renewing peace between two aggrieved parties surpasses ritual praying, fasting, and almsgiving.
-Hadith The Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reported by Abu Darda'a
The Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reported by Abu Darda'a
From "The Bounty of Allah," Hadith translated by Aneela Khalid Arshed. Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. Used with permission of The Crossroad Publishing Company, New York.
Relationship Quote of the Day
in your sight nations rise and fall,
and pass through times of peril.
Now when our land is troubled,
be near to judge and save.
May leaders be led by your wisdom;
may they search your will and see it clearly.
If we have turned from your way,
help us to reverse our ways and repent.
Give us your light and your truth to guide us;
through Jesus Christ,
who is Lord of this world, and our Savior. Amen.