April 15: “Miracles of Jesus” (12/12) by Day Williams

XII.

Conclusion

Of virgin born, raised from the dead–
With multiple miracles in between–
Christ Jesus, Son of God, the Way, Truth, Life–
Is Mankind’s Savior, the sacrifice,

Unblemished Lamb, the man and God who bled
For sinners, whose transgressions were wiped clean,
Salvation gained through faith by man, child, wife,
For God’s one Son has paid the perfect price.

~Day Williams

S.D.G.

Rembrandt

“Christ with Arms Folded”

April 14: “Miracles of Jesus” (11/12) by Day Williams

 

XI.

“I’m going fishing,” Peter said, and others
Said to him, “We’ll go with you, but they caught
Nothing, then Jesus stood on shore, not far
From them, and asked, “Have you caught some fish, friends?”

They did not know who he was. “Throw your net
On the boat’s right side for a catch galore.”
When they did, they could not haul in the net,
The number of fish was so large. “It is

The Lord,” said a disciple. Peter dressed
Himself, jumped in the water, swam to shore,
Then helped drag in the net (he broke a sweat),
With its one hundred fifty-three large fish,

And they had breakfast with the Lord, who showed
Himself to them for forty days and taught
About God’s kingdom, telling them to wait
For the Holy Spirit to baptize them

With power, then he led them on a road
Near Bethany, blessed those whom he had brought
By lifting hands, and he ascended straight
To heaven, hidden by a cloud, God’s gem.

April 12: “Miracles of Jesus” (9/12) by Day Williams

IX.

Martha went out but Mary stayed, preparing
For His arrival, and when Martha greeted
Jesus, she said to him, “It would have turned
Out better; he would not be in his grave

If you had been here, but because you care,
Even now I know God will give you, Jesus,
Whatever you ask.” Jesus was concerned
And told her, “Lazarus will rise once more.”

“Yes,” Martha said, “he’ll rise, as we’re aware,
On the last day when everybody sees
You when they rise from graves–yet I still mourn.”
Jesus told her what she knew from talks before:

Mary, Lazarus, and Martha

Matthew Chapter Fifteen

MATTHEW CHAPTER FIFTEEN

1 Some Pharisees and teachers of the law

Came from Jerusalem and questioned Jesus,

2 “Why do your followers destroy our old

 

Traditions? They don’t wash their hands before

They eat!” 3 “Tell me,” asked Jesus, “why do you

Break God’s command for your tradition’s sake?

 

4 Because God said, ‘Revere your father and

Your mother’ and ‘Whoever curses his

Father or mother must be put to death.’

 

5 But you say if a man says to his father

Or mother, ‘Help you otherwise might have

Received from me is now a gift to God,’

 

6 He is not to ‘revere his father’ with

It. Thus you nullify the word of God

For your tradition’s sake. 7 You hypocrites!

 

Well did Isaiah prophesy of you:

8 “‘These people honor me with their lips, but

Their hearts are far from me. 9 They worship me

 

In vain; their teachings are but man-made laws.’”

10 Then Jesus called the crowd to him and said,

“Listen and understand. 11 What goes into

 

A man’s mouth does not make him ‘unclean,’ but

What comes out of his mouth, that’s what makes him

‘Unclean.’” 12 Then the disciples came to him

 

And asked, “Do you know that the Pharisees

Were outraged when they heard this?” 13 He replied,

“Each plant my heavenly Father has not planted

 

Will be uprooted. 14 Leave them; they’re blind guides.

If a blind man leads a blind man, they’ll both

Fall in a pit.” 15 “Explain the parable

 

To us,” said Peter. 16 “Are you still so dull?”

Jesus asked. 17 “Don’t you see whatever goes

Into the mouth goes in the stomach, then

 

Out of the body? 18 But the things that come

Out of the mouth come from the heart, and these

Can make a man ‘unclean,’ 19 for from the heart

 

Come evil thoughts, lust, murder, slander, theft,

Adultery, false testimony, 20 which are

What make a man ‘unclean’; but eating with

 

Unwashed hands does not make him ‘unclean.’” 21 Jesus

Then left that place, retiring into Tyre

And Sidon’s district. 22 A woman from that

 

Vicinity, a Canaanite, approached

Him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have

Mercy on me! My daughter’s suffering

 

Horribly, for a demon has possessed

Her.” 23 Jesus made no answer, and so his

Disciples came to him and urged, “Send her

 

Away, for she keeps crying after us.”

24 Jesus replied, “I was sent only to

The lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

 

25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord,

Help me!” she said. 26 He answered, “It’s not right

To take the children’s bread and toss it to

 

Their dogs.” 27 “Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even dogs

Beneath the master’s table are allowed

To eat the crumbs that fall;” 28 Then Jesus said,

 

“Woman, you have great faith, and your request

Is granted.” And her daughter was restored

That moment. 29 Jesus left that place and went

 

Along the Sea of Galilee, then he

Went up a mountainside and sat down. 30 Great

Crowds came to him and brought the lame, the blind,

 

The crippled, those who could not speak and many

Others, and put them at his feet; and he

Healed them. 31 The people were amazed when they

 

Saw dumb men speak, the crippled well, the lame

Walking about and blind men seeing. They

Marveled and praised the God of Israel.

 

32 Then Jesus called his followers to him

And said, “I have compassion for these people;

They have already been with me three days and

 

Have nothing left to eat. I do not want

To let them go home hungry, or they may

Collapse along the way.” 33 His followers

 

Replied, “Where could we get sufficient bread

In this deserted place to feed a crowd

Like this?” 34 “How many loaves do you have?” Jesus

 

Asked. “Seven, and a few small fish,” they said.

35 He told the crowd to sit down on the ground.

36 Then he picked up the seven loaves and fish,

 

And when he’d given thanks, he broke them and

Gave them to the disciples, who in turn

Gave pieces to the people. 37 Everyone ate

 

‘Til full– 38 four thousand men, besides the women

And children. Afterward the followers

Collected seven basketfuls of pieces

 

Left over. 39 After Jesus had dismissed

The crowd, he went aboard the vessel and

Crossed to the area of Magadan.

 

S.D.G.

 

 

Matthew Chapter Ten

MATTHEW CHAPTER TEN

1 He called his twelve disciples to him and

Gave them authority to drive out evil

Spirits and heal all kinds of sickness and

 

Disease. 2 These are the twelve apostles’ names:

First, Simon (who’s called Peter) and his brother

Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and John,

 

His brother; 3 Philip and Bartholomew;

Thomas; the tax collector, Matthew; James

Alphaeus’ son, and Thaddaeus; 4 and Simon

 

The Zealot and Judas Iscariot,

The traitor. 5 These twelve Jesus sent out with

The following instructions: “Do not go

 

Among the Gentiles or Samaritans.

6 Go rather to the lost sheep in the house

Of Israel. 7 Go and announce to them

 

That Heaven’s Kingdom is near. 8 Heal the sick,

Raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons.

Freely you have received, so freely give.

 

9 Do not take any gold or silver or

Copper along with you, 10 and take no bag

For the excursion, and no extra clothes

 

Or sandals or a staff; the worker’s worth

His keep. 11 Whatever town or village that

You enter, search for some respected man

 

There; stay with him until you leave. 12 As you

Enter the home, give it your blessing. 13 If

The home deserves it, let your peace come rest

 

On it; if it is not, then let your peace

Return to you. 14 If none will welcome you

Or listen to your words, shake off the dust

 

From your feet as you leave that home or town.

15 Believe me, Sodom and Gomorrah will

Fare better on the day of judgment than

 

That town. 16 I send you out like sheep among

Wolves, so be shrewd as snakes, as innocent

As doves, 17 but be on guard against men; they

 

Will hand you over to the courts and flog

You in their synagogues. 18 On my account

You will be brought in front of governors

 

And kings as witnesses to them and to

The Gentiles, 19 but when they arrest you, don’t

Worry about how you should speak or what

 

To say, 20 for you’ll be told then what to say,

For it will not be you who speaks– instead,

The Spirit of your Father will be speaking

 

Through you: 21 A brother will betray a brother

To death; a father will betray his child,

And children will rebel against their parents

 

And have them killed. 22 All men will hate you due

To me, but he who stands firm to the end

Will be saved. 23 When you’re persecuted in

 

One place, flee to another. I tell you

The truth, you will not finish going through

The towns of Israel before the Son

 

Of Man arrives. 24 A student’s not above

His teacher and a servant’s not above

His master. 25 It suffices for the student

 

That he be like his teacher, that the servant

Be like his master. If the household head

Is called ‘The Evil Prince,’ what sort of names

 

Will they give to his servants? 26 But don’t be

Afraid of them. There’s nothing now concealed

That will not be exposed, or hidden that

 

Will not be known. 27 The things I tell you in

The darkness, you should speak in daylight; what

Is whispered in your ear, proclaim from roofs.

 

28 Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body

But cannot kill the soul. Instead, be scared

Of him who can destroy both soul and body

 

In fires of hell. 29 Two sparrows sell for one

Penny, don’t they? Yet not a single one

Of them can fall to earth without your Father

 

Knowing. 30 The very hairs upon your head

Are numbered, 31 so don’t be afraid; you’re worth

More than a flock of sparrows. 32 Every man

 

Who publicly acknowledges me, I’ll

Acknowledge in front of my Father in

Heaven, 33 but every man who shall disown

 

Me publicly, I will disown to my

Father in heaven. 34 Don’t suppose that I

Have come to bring peace to the earth. I did

 

Not come to bring peace, but a sword, 35 for I

Have come to turn ‘a man against his father,

A girl against her mother, and a daughter-

 

In-law against her mother-in-law’− 36 right

In his own home a man will have his worst

Enemies. 37 Anyone who loves his father

 

Or mother more than me does not deserve

To be mine; anyone who loves his son

Or daughter more than me does not deserve

 

To be mine; 38 and the one who does not take

His cross and follow me does not deserve

Me. 39 He who finds his life will lose it; he

 

Who gives it up for me will find it. 40 Those

Who welcome you are welcoming me. When

They welcome me, they welcome God who sent

 

Me. 41 Anyone who greets a prophet just

Because he is a prophet will receive

The same reward a prophet gains; he who

 

Receives a righteous man because he is

A righteous man will gain a righteous man’s

Reward, 42 and if you, as my follower,

 

Give even a cold cup of water to

A little child, believe me, serves the Lord,

And he will surely not lose his reward.”

S.D.G.

 

Matthew Chapter Four

MATTHEW CHAPTER FOUR

Then Jesus, led out by the Holy Spirit
Into the wilderness, was tempted by
The devil. After fasting forty days

And forty nights, he was quite hungry. Coming
To him, the tempter said, “If you’re the Son
Of God, command these stones to turn to bread.”

Jesus replied, “It’s written: ‘Bread won’t feed
Men’s souls; obedience to every word
That comes out of the mouth of God is what

Man needs.’ ” The devil then took him within
The holy city, to the temple roof,
And there he had him stand. He said, “Jump off,

If you’re the Son of God, for it is written:
‘He’ll send his angels to prevent your harm,
And they will lift you in their hands, so that

You will not strike your foot against a stone.’ ”
Jesus replied, “It’s also written: `Do
Not give the Lord your God a foolish test.’ ”

Again, the devil took him to a high
Mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of
The world and their magnificence. “All this

I’ll give you,” said he, “if you will bow down
And worship me.” “Forget it, Satan,” said
Jesus to him, “for it is written, ‘Worship

The Lord your God, and serve him only.’ ” Then
The devil went away, and angels came
And waited on him. Hearing John had been

Imprisoned, he returned to Galilee.
Soon he left Nazareth and went and moved
Into Capernaum upon the coast

In the locality of Zebulun
And Naphtali− that it might be fulfilled
What was said through Isaiah’s prophecy:

“Land of Zebulun, land of Naphtali,
Beside the sea, the countryside beyond
The Jordan, Galilee of Gentiles−people

Who sat in darkness have seen great light; on
Those living in the land of death a light
Has dawned.” From then on Jesus started preaching,

“Repent, for heaven’s kingdom is at hand.”
One day as Jesus walked beside the Sea
Of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon

Called Peter and his brother Andrew. They
Were casting nets into the lake, for they
Were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” said Jesus,

“And I will show you how to fish for souls
Of men.” At once they left their nets and went
With him. As he went on from there, he saw

Two other brothers, James and John, the sons
Of Zebedee, who sat inside a boat
With Zebedee, their father, mending nets.

Jesus called them, and instantly they left
Their father and the boat, and followed him.
Jesus went everywhere in Galilee,

Taught in their synagogues and preached the good
News of the kingdom, healing all diseases
And sicknesses among the people. News

About him spread all over Syria,
And people brought to him all who were sick
From various diseases, those who bore

Intense distress, those whom the demons had
Possessed, those having seizures, and those who
Were paralyzed, and he healed them. Huge crowds

From Galilee, Jerusalem, the Ten
Cities, Judea and the farther ground
Across the Jordan followed him around.

S.D.G.

Matthew Chapter Two

MATTHEW CHAPTER TWO

1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem
Within Judea, when King Herod reigned,
A party of astrologers came from

The east, arriving in Jerusalem,
2 And asked, “Where is the child who has been born
The Jewish king? For we have seen his star

In far-off eastern lands, and we have come
To worship him.” 3 Now when King Herod heard
This he was vexed, and all Jerusalem

With him. 4 When he had called together all
The Jewish scribes and priests, he asked them where
The Christ was to be born. 5 “In Bethlehem

In Judea,” they answered, “because this
Is what the prophet wrote about it: 6 “‘But
You, Bethlehem, in Judah’s land, are by

No means the least of Judah’s princes; for
From you will come a ruler who will be
The shepherd of my people Israel.’“

7 Then Herod called the Magi secretly
And learned from them exactly when they first
Saw the star. 8 “Go to Bethlehem,” he said,

“And search carefully for the child. As soon
As you have found him, come back and tell me,
So that I too may go and worship him.”

9 After they’d heard the king, they started out
Again to Bethlehem, and now the star
They had seen in the east went up in front

Of them 10 until it stopped above the place
Where the child lay. Their joy was boundless, 11 so
They went into the house and saw the child

Magi witnessing-divine-01

With his mother Mary, and they bowed down
And worshiped him, then they revealed their treasures,
Presenting him with gifts of gold and incense

And myrrh, 12 and having had a warning in
A dream not to go back to Herod, they
Returned to their own country by another

Route. 13 After they had gone, an angel of
The Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream.
“Get up,” he said, “and take the child and his

Mother– escape to Egypt. Stay there ‘til
I tell you to return, for Herod plans
To find the child and kill him.” 14 So he got up,

Took the child and his mother in the night
And left for Egypt, 15 where he stayed until
The death of Herod. This fulfilled the prophet’s

Prediction: “Out of Egypt I have called
My son.” 16 When Herod realized that he had been
Tricked by the Magi, he was furious,

And ordered all the boys in Bethlehem
And the surrounding district who were two
Years old and under to be killed, and based

His calculation on the time he had
Learned from the Magi; 17 then what was said through
The prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:

18 “A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and
Great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children,
Refusing to be comforted, because

They are no more.” 19 But after Herod’s death,
An angel of the Lord came in a dream
To Joseph while he was in Egypt 20 and

Said, “Get up, take the infant and his mother
And go into the land of Israel,
For those who tried to kill the child are dead.”

21 So he returned at once to Israel
With the child and his mother, 22 but on the way
He learned that Archelaus was reigning in

Judea in place of his father Herod,
And he was scared; then, in another dream,
He was warned to turn aside, and he withdrew

To Galilee instead, 23 and went and lived
In Nazareth, which prophets had foreseen
When they wrote: “He will be called a Nazarene.”

***

(rendered in blank verse by Day Williams)

Matthew Chapter One

MATTHEW CHAPTER ONE

1 A record of the genealogy

Of Jesus Christ the son of David, son

Of Abraham: 2 Now Abraham was Isaac’s

 

Father, and Isaac Jacob’s father, Jacob

Was Judah and his brothers’ father, 3 Judah,

Perez and Zerah’s father, and their mother

 

Was Tamar; now Perez was Hezron’s father,

And Hezron was Ram’s father; 4 and then Ram

Was father of Amminadab, and then

 

Amminadab was Nahshon’s father; Nahshon

Was Salmon’s father; 5 Salmon was the father

Of Boaz (Rahab was his mother); Boaz

 

Was Obed’s father (Ruth was Obed’s mother);

Obed was Jesse’s father; 6 Jesse was

King David’s father; David was the father

 

Of Solomon, whose mother had once been

Uriah’s wife; 7 Solomon was father

To Rehoboam, and Rehoboam

 

Was father to Abijah, and Abijah

Was Asa’s father, 8 and Jehoshaphat’s

Father was Asa, and Jehoshaphat

 

The father of Jehoram, and Jehoram

Uzziah’s father, 9 and Uzziah Jotham’s

Father; and Jotham Ahaz’ father; Ahaz

 

Was Hezekiah’s father; 10 Hezekiah

The father of Manasseh, and Manasseh

Was Amon’s father; Amon was Josiah’s

 

Father; 11 Josiah was the father of

Jeconiah and all his brothers when

They were removed to Babylon as captives.

 

12 After their expulsion into Babylon

Came Jeconiah as the father of

Shealtiel, and Shealtiel was the father

 

Of Zerubbabel, 13 Zerubbabel was

The father of Abiud, and Abiud

The father of Eliakim, and then

 

Eliakim was Azor’s father; 14 Azor

Was Zadok’s father; Zadok was the father

Of Achim, Achim was Eliud’s father,

 

15 Eliud Eleazar’s father, and

Eleazar was Matthan’s father; Matthan

Was Jacob’s father; 16 Jacob was the father

 

Of Joseph, Mary’s husband, of whom was

Born Jesus, who is the Messiah. 17 So

From Abraham to David there were in

 

All fourteen generations, and from David

Up to the exile into Babylon

Were fourteen generations, and then from

 

The exile to the Christ were fourteen. 18 This

Is how the birth of Jesus Christ occurred:

His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph,

 

And yet before they came together, she

Was found with child due to the Holy Spirit.

19 Because her husband Joseph was a man

 

Of righteousness and did not want to shame

Her publicly, he made his mind up to

Divorce her quietly, 20 but after he

 

Had chosen this, an angel of the Lord

Came in a dream to him and told him, “Joseph,

The son of David, do not be afraid

Joseph angel dream

 

To take home Mary as your wife, for what’s

Conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

21 She’ll bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus,

 

Because he’ll save his people from their sins.

22 This will fulfill God’s message through the prophets:

23 ‘The virgin shall conceive a child and she

 

Will bear a son they’ll call Immanuel’–

Which means, ‘God is with us.’” 24 When Joseph woke

Up, he did as the angel of the Lord

 

Had ordered, taking Mary home to be

His wife, 25 but had no sex with her ‘til she

Had borne a Son, and Joseph called him Jesus.

***

(rendered in blank verse by Day Williams)