1 Then the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, who delivered them into the hand of Midian for seven years.
2 And they were greatly oppressed by them. And they made for themselves hollows and caves in the mountains, and very fortified places for defense.
3 And when Israel had planted, Midian and Amalek, and the rest of the eastern nations ascended,
4 and pitching their tents among them, they laid waste to all that was planted, as far as the entrance to Gaza. And they left behind nothing at all to sustain life in Israel, neither sheep, nor oxen, nor donkeys.
5 For they and all their flocks arrived with their tents, and they filled all places like locusts, an innumerable multitude of men and camels, devastating whatever they touched.
6 And Israel was humbled greatly in the sight of Midian.
7 And he cried out to the Lord, requesting assistance against the Midianites.
8 And he sent to them a man who was a prophet, and he said: “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: ‘I caused you to ascend from Egypt, and I led you away from the house of servitude.
9 And I freed you from the hand of the Egyptians and from all of the enemies who were afflicting you. And I cast them out at your arrival, and I delivered their land to you.
10 And I said: I am the Lord your God. You shall not fear the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live. But you were not willing to listen to my voice.’ “
11 Then an Angel of the Lord arrived, and he sat under an oak tree, which was at Ophrah, and which belonged to Joash, the father of the family of Ezri. And while his son Gideon was threshing and cleaning the grain at the winepress, so that he might flee from Midian,
12 the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and he said: “The Lord is with you, most valiant of men.”
13 And Gideon said to him: “I beg you, my lord, if the Lord is with us, why have these things happened to us? Where are his miracles, which our fathers described when they said, ‘The Lord led us away from Egypt.’ But now the Lord has forsaken us, and he has delivered us into the hand of Midian.”
14 And the Lord looked down upon him, and he said: “Go forth with this, your strength, and you shall free Israel from the hand of Midian. Know that I have sent you.”
15 And responding, he said: “I beg you, my lord, with what shall I free Israel? Behold, my family is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in the house of my father.”
16 And the Lord said to him: “I will be with you. And so, you shall cut down Midian as if one man.”
17 And he said: “If I have found grace before you, give me a sign that it is you who is speaking to me.
18 And may you not withdraw from here, until I return to you, carrying a sacrifice and offering it to you.” And he responded, “I will wait for your return.”
19 And so Gideon entered, and he boiled a goat, and he made unleavened bread from a measure of flour. And setting the flesh in a basket, and putting the broth of the flesh in a pot, he took it all under the oak tree, and he offered it to him.
20 And the Angel of the Lord said to him, “Take the flesh and the unleavened bread, and place them on that rock, and pour out the broth upon it.” And when he had done so,
21 the Angel of the Lord extended the end of a staff, which he was holding in his hand, and he touched the flesh and the unleavened loaves. And a fire ascended from the rock, and it consumed the flesh and the unleavened loaves. Then the Angel of the Lord vanished from his sight.
22 And Gideon, realizing that it had been the Angel of the Lord, said: “Alas, my Lord God! For I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face.”
23 And the Lord said to him: “Peace be with you. Do not be afraid; you shall not die.”
24 Therefore, Gideon built an altar to the Lord there, and he called it, the Peace of the Lord, even to the present day. And while he was still at Ophrah, which is of the family of Ezri,
25 that night, the Lord said to him: “Take a bull of your father’s, and another bull of seven years, and you shall destroy the altar of Baal, which is your father’s. And you shall cut down the sacred grove which is around the altar.
26 And you shall build an altar to the Lord your God, at the summit of this rock, on which you placed the sacrifice before. And you shall take the second bull, and you shall offer a holocaust upon a pile of the wood, which you shall cut down from the grove.”
27 Therefore, Gideon, taking ten men from his servants, did just as the Lord had instructed him. But fearing his father’s household, and the men of that city, he was not willing to do it by day. Instead, he completed everything by night.
28 And when the men of that town had risen up in the morning, they saw the altar of Baal destroyed, and the sacred grove cut down, and the second bull set upon the altar, which then had been built.
29 And they said one to another, “Who has done this?” And when they inquired everywhere as to the author of the deed, it was said, “Gideon, the son of Joash, did all these things.”
30 And they said to Joash: “Bring forward your son here, so that he may die. For he has destroyed the altar of Baal, and he has cut down the sacred grove.”
31 But he responded to them: “Could you be the avengers of Baal, so that you fight on his behalf? Whoever is his adversary, let him die before the light arrives tomorrow; if he is a god, let him vindicate himself against him who has overturned his altar.”
32 From that day, Gideon was called Jerubbaal, because Joash had said, “Let Baal avenge himself against him who has overturned his altar.”
33 And so, all of Midian, and Amalek, and the eastern peoples were gathered together. And crossing the Jordan, they encamped in the valley of Jezreel.
34 But the Spirit of the Lord entered Gideon, who, sounding the trumpet, summoned the house of Abiezer so that he might follow him.
35 And he sent messengers into all of Manasseh, who also followed him, and other messengers into Asher, and Zebulun, and Naphtali, who went to meet him.
36 And Gideon said to God: “If you will save Israel by my hand, just as you have said:
37 I will set this wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there will be dew only on the fleece, and all the ground is dry, I will know that by my hand, as you have said, you will free Israel.”
38 And so it was done. And rising in the night, wringing out the fleece, he filled a vessel with the dew.
39 And again he said to God: “Let not your fury be enkindled against me, if I test once more, seeking a sign in the fleece. I pray that only the fleece may be dry, and all the ground may be wet with dew.”
40 And that night, God did as he had requested. And it was dry only on the fleece, and there was dew on all the ground.
1 ALEPH. O how the gold has become dulled, the finest color has been altered, the stones of the sanctuary have been scattered at the head of every street.
2 BETH. The famous sons of Zion, and those clothed with the foremost gold: how they have become like earthen vessels, the work of the hands of a potter.
3 GHIMEL. Yet even savages expose their breast and give milk to their young. But the daughter of my people is cruel, like the ostrich in the desert.
4 DALETH. The tongue of the infant adheres to his palate out of thirst. The little ones have asked for bread, and there was no one to break it for them.
5 HE. Those who were fed indulgently have passed away in the roads. Those who were nourished with saffron have welcomed filth.
6 VAU. And the iniquity of the daughter of my people has been made greater than the sin of Sodom, which was overthrown in a moment, and yet hands did not take captives in her.
7 ZAIN. Her Nazirites were whiter than snow, shinier than milk, more ruddy than ancient ivory, more beautiful than sapphire.
8 HETH. Their face has been blacked more than coals, and they are not recognized in the streets. Their skin has adhered to their bones; it dried out and became like wood.
9 TETH. It was better for those slain by the sword, than for those put to death by famine. For these waste away, being consumed by the sterility of the land.
10 JOD. The hands of pitiable women have boiled their sons. They became their food in the grief of the daughter of my people.
11 CAPH. The Lord has completed his fury; he has poured out the wrath of his indignation. And he has kindled a fire in Zion, and it has devoured its foundations.
12 LAMED. The kings of the earth, and all the inhabitants of the world, did not believe that the adversary and the enemy would enter through the gates of Jerusalem.
13 MEM. It is because of the sins of her prophets, and the iniquities of her priests, who have shed the blood of the just in her midst.
14 NUN. They have wandered in the streets like the blind; they have been defiled with blood. And when they were not able, they held their garments.
15 SAMECH. “Go back, you polluted ones!” they cried out to them. “Go back, go away, do not touch!” Of course, they argued, and being removed, they said among the Gentiles, “He will no longer dwell among them.”
16 PHE. The face of the Lord has divided them. He will no longer respect them. They were not ashamed before the faces of the priests, nor did they take pity on the elderly.
17 AIN. While we were still standing, our eyes failed, expecting help for us in vain, when we looked attentively toward a nation that was not able to save.
18 SADE. Our footsteps have slipped on the paths of our own streets. Our end draws near. Our days have been completed, for our end has arrived.
19 COPH. Our persecutors have been swifter than the eagles of the sky. They have been pursuing us above the mountains; they have lain in wait for us in the desert.
20 RES. The spirit of our mouth, Christ the Lord, has been captured by our sins; to him, we said, “In your shadow, we will live among the Gentiles.”
21 SIN. Be glad and rejoice, O daughter of Edom, who dwells in the Land of Uz. The cup will also pass to you; you will be inebriated as well as naked.
22 THAU. Your iniquity has been completed, O daughter of Zion. He will no longer send you away to captivity. He has visited your iniquity, O daughter of Edom; he has uncovered your sins.
1 Unto the end, a psalm for David.
2 Hear, O God, my prayer, when I make supplication to thee: deliver my soul from the fear of the enemy.
3 Thou hast protected me from the assembly of the malignant; from the multitude of the workers of iniquity.
4 For they have whetted their tongues like a sword; they have bent their bow a bitter thing,
12 If I have spoken to you about earthly things, and you have not believed, then how will you believe, if I will speak to you about heavenly things?
13 And no one has ascended to heaven, except the one who descended from heaven: the Son of man who is in heaven.
14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so also must the Son of man be lifted up,
15 so that whoever believes in him may not perish, but may have eternal life.
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that all who believe in him may not perish, but may have eternal life.
17 For God did not send his Son into the world, in order to judge the world, but in order that the world may be saved through him.
18 Whoever believes in him is not judged. But whoever does not believe is already judged, because he does not believe in the name of the only-begotten Son of God.
19 And this is the judgment: that the Light has come into the world, and men loved darkness more than light. For their works were evil.
20 For everyone who does evil hates the Light and does not go toward the Light, so that his works may not be corrected.
21 But whoever acts in truth goes toward the Light, so that his works may be manifested, because they have been accomplished in God.”
22 After these things, Jesus and his disciples went into the land of Judea. And he was living there with them and baptizing.
23 Now John was also baptizing, at Aenon near Salim, because there was much water in that place. And they were arriving and being baptized.
24 For John had not yet been cast into prison.
25 Then a dispute occurred between the disciples of John and the Jews, about purification.
26 And they went to John and said to him: “Rabbi, the one who was with you across the Jordan, about whom you offered testimony: behold, he is baptizing and everyone is going to him.”
27 John responded and said: “A man is not able to receive anything, unless it has been given to him from heaven.
28 You yourselves offer testimony for me that I said, ‘I am not the Christ,’ but that I have been sent before him.
29 He who holds the bride is the groom. But the friend of the groom, who stands and listens to Him, rejoices joyfully at the voice of the groom. And so, this, my joy, has been fulfilled.
30 He must increase, while I must decrease.
31 He who comes from above, is above everything. He who is from below, is of the earth, and he speaks about the earth. He who comes from heaven is above everything.
32 And what he has seen and heard, about this he testifies. And no one accepts his testimony.
33 Whoever has accepted his testimony has certified that God is truthful.
34 For he whom God has sent speaks the words of God. For God does not give the Spirit by measure.
35 The Father loves the Son, and he has given everything into his hand.
36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life. But whoever is unbelieving toward the Son shall not see life; instead the wrath of God remains upon him.”