The Lord, the God of gods, has spoken; *
he has called the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
Out of Zion, perfect in its beauty, *
God reveals himself in glory.
Our God will come and will not keep silence; *
before him there is a consuming flame,
and round about him a raging storm.
He calls the heavens and the earth from above *
to witness the judgment of his people.
“Gather before me my loyal followers, *
those who have made a covenant with me
and sealed it with sacrifice.”
Let the heavens declare the rightness of his cause; *
for God himself is judge.
Hear, O my people, and I will speak:
“O Israel, I will bear witness against you; *
for I am God, your God.
I do not accuse you because of your sacrifices; *
your offerings are always before me.
I will take no bull-calf from your stalls, *
nor he-goats out of your pens;
For all the beasts of the forest are mine, *
the herds in their thousands upon the hills.
I know every bird in the sky, *
and the creatures of the fields are in my sight.
If I were hungry, I would not tell you, *
for the whole world is mine and all that is in it.
Do you think I eat the flesh of bulls, *
or drink the blood of goats?
Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving *
and make good your vows to the Most High.
Call upon me in the day of trouble; *
I will deliver you, and you shall honor me.”
But to the wicked God says: *
“Why do you recite my statutes,
and take my covenant upon your lips;
Since you refuse discipline, *
and toss my words behind your back?
When you see a thief, you make him your friend, *
and you cast in your lot with adulterers.
You have loosed your lips for evil, *
and harnessed your tongue to a lie.
You are always speaking evil of your brother *
and slandering your own mother’s son.
These things you have done, and I kept still, *
and you thought that I am like you.”
“I have made my accusation; *
I have put my case in order before your eyes.
Consider this well, you who forget God, *
lest I rend you and there be none to deliver you.
Whoever offers me the sacrifice of thanksgiving honors me; *
but to those who keep in my way will I show the salvation of God.”
Image: Photo by Martino Pietropoli on Unsplash