25 Then Pharaoh called in Moses and Aaron and said, “Go, offer sacrifices to your God within the land.”
26 Moses replied, “It wouldn’t be right to do that, because the sacrifices that we offer to the LORD our God will offend Egyptians. If we openly offer sacrifices that offend Egyptians, won’t they stone us to death? 27 We need to go for a three-day journey into the desert to offer sacrifices to the LORD our God as he has ordered us.”
28 So Pharaoh said, “I’ll let you go to offer sacrifices to the LORD your God in the desert, provided you don’t go too far away and you pray for me.”
29 Moses said, “I’ll leave you now, and I’ll pray to the LORD. Tomorrow the swarms of insects will leave Pharaoh, his officials, and his people. Just don’t let Pharaoh lie to us again and not let the people go to offer sacrifices to the LORD.”
30 So Moses left Pharaoh and prayed to the LORD. 31 The LORD did as Moses asked and removed the swarms of insects from Pharaoh, from his officials, and from his people. Not one insect remained. 32 But Pharaoh was stubborn once again, and he wouldn’t let the people go.
21 There was a man walking by, coming from work, Simon from Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus. They made him carry Jesus’ cross.
22-24 The soldiers brought Jesus to Golgotha, meaning “Skull Hill.” They offered him a mild painkiller (wine mixed with myrrh), but he wouldn’t take it. And they nailed him to the cross. They divided up his clothes and threw dice to see who would get them.
25-30 They nailed him up at nine o’clock in the morning. The charge against him—THE KING OF THE JEWS—was printed on a poster. Along with him, they crucified two criminals, one to his right, the other to his left. People passing along the road jeered, shaking their heads in mock lament: “You bragged that you could tear down the Temple and then rebuild it in three days—so show us your stuff! Save yourself! If you’re really God’s Son, come down from that cross!”
31-32 The high priests, along with the religion scholars, were right there mixing it up with the rest of them, having a great time poking fun at him: “He saved others—but he can’t save himself! Messiah, is he? King of Israel? Then let him climb down from that cross. We’ll all become believers then!” Even the men crucified alongside him joined in the mockery.
33-34 At noon the sky became extremely dark. The darkness lasted three hours. At three o’clock, Jesus groaned out of the depths, crying loudly, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?”
35-36 Some of the bystanders who heard him said, “Listen, he’s calling for Elijah.” Someone ran off, soaked a sponge in sour wine, put it on a stick, and gave it to him to drink, saying, “Let’s see if Elijah comes to take him down.”
37-39 But Jesus, with a loud cry, gave his last breath. At that moment the Temple curtain ripped right down the middle. When the Roman captain standing guard in front of him saw that he had quit breathing, he said, “This has to be the Son of God!”
8 Hear my prayer, LORD God Almighty;
listen to me, God of Jacob.
9 Look on our shield,[e] O God;
look with favor on your anointed one.
10 Better is one day in your courts
than a thousand elsewhere;
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
the LORD bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
from those whose walk is blameless.
12 LORD Almighty,
blessed is the one who trusts in you.
Prayer: yours is the morning and yours is the evening, shine forever in our hearts! Amen.