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Ezekiel chapter 47

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The man brought me back to the entrance of the temple, and I saw water coming out from under the threshold of the temple toward the east (for the temple faced east). The water was coming down from under the south side of the temple, south of the altar.
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He then brought me out through the north gate and led me around the outside to the outer gate facing east, and the water was flowing from the south side.
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As the man went eastward with a measuring line in his hand, he measured off a thousand cubits and then led me through water that was ankle-deep.
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He measured off another thousand cubits and led me through water that was knee-deep. He measured off another thousand and led me through water that was up to the waist.
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He measured off another thousand, but now it was a river that I could not cross, because the water had risen and was deep enough to swim in-- a river that no one could cross.
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He asked me, "Son of man, do you see this?" Then he led me back to the bank of the river.
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When I arrived there, I saw a great number of trees on each side of the river.
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He said to me, "This water flows toward the eastern region and goes down into the Arabah, where it enters the Sea. When it empties into the Sea, the water there becomes fresh.
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Swarms of living creatures will live wherever the river flows. There will be large numbers of fish, because this water flows there and makes the salt water fresh; so where the river flows everything will live.
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Fishermen will stand along the shore; from En Gedi to En Eglaim there will be places for spreading nets. The fish will be of many kinds-- like the fish of the Great Sea.
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But the swamps and marshes will not become fresh; they will be left for salt.
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Fruit trees of all kinds will grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves will not wither, nor will their fruit fail. Every month they will bear, because the water from the sanctuary flows to them. Their fruit will serve for food and their leaves for healing."
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This is what the Sovereign LORD says: "These are the boundaries by which you are to divide the land for an inheritance among the twelve tribes of Israel, with two portions for Joseph.
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You are to divide it equally among them. Because I swore with uplifted hand to give it to your forefathers, this land will become your inheritance.
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"This is to be the boundary of the land: "On the north side it will run from the Great Sea by the Hethlon road past Lebo Hamath to Zedad,
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Berothah and Sibraim (which lies on the border between Damascus and Hamath), as far as Hazer Hatticon, which is on the border of Hauran.
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The boundary will extend from the sea to Hazar Enan, along the northern border of Damascus, with the border of Hamath to the north. This will be the north boundary.
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"On the east side the boundary will run between Hauran and Damascus, along the Jordan between Gilead and the land of Israel, to the eastern sea and as far as Tamar. This will be the east boundary.
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"On the south side it will run from Tamar as far as the waters of Meribah Kadesh, then along the Wadi [of Egypt] to the Great Sea. This will be the south boundary.
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"On the west side, the Great Sea will be the boundary to a point opposite Lebo Hamath. This will be the west boundary.
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"You are to distribute this land among yourselves according to the tribes of Israel.
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You are to allot it as an inheritance for yourselves and for the aliens who have settled among you and who have children. You are to consider them as native-born Israelites; along with you they are to be allotted an inheritance among the tribes of Israel.
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In whatever tribe the alien settles, there you are to give him his inheritance," declares the Sovereign LORD.

Ezekiel chapter 48

1
"These are the tribes, listed by name: At the northern frontier, Dan will have one portion; it will follow the Hethlon road to Lebo Hamath; Hazar Enan and the northern border of Damascus next to Hamath will be part of its border from the east side to the west side.
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"Asher will have one portion; it will border the territory of Dan from east to west.
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"Naphtali will have one portion; it will border the territory of Asher from east to west.
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"Manasseh will have one portion; it will border the territory of Naphtali from east to west.
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"Ephraim will have one portion; it will border the territory of Manasseh from east to west.
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"Reuben will have one portion; it will border the territory of Ephraim from east to west.
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"Judah will have one portion; it will border the territory of Reuben from east to west.
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"Bordering the territory of Judah from east to west will be the portion you are to present as a special gift. It will be 25,000 cubits wide, and its length from east to west will equal one of the tribal portions; the sanctuary will be in the center of it.
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"The special portion you are to offer to the LORD will be 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 cubits wide.
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This will be the sacred portion for the priests. It will be 25,000 cubits long on the north side, 10,000 cubits wide on the west side, 10,000 cubits wide on the east side and 25,000 cubits long on the south side. In the center of it will be the sanctuary of the LORD.
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This will be for the consecrated priests, the Zadokites, who were faithful in serving me and did not go astray as the Levites did when the Israelites went astray.
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It will be a special gift to them from the sacred portion of the land, a most holy portion, bordering the territory of the Levites.
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"Alongside the territory of the priests, the Levites will have an allotment 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 cubits wide. Its total length will be 25,000 cubits and its width 10,000 cubits.
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They must not sell or exchange any of it. This is the best of the land and must not pass into other hands, because it is holy to the LORD.
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"The remaining area, 5,000 cubits wide and 25,000 cubits long, will be for the common use of the city, for houses and for pastureland. The city will be in the center of it
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and will have these measurements: the north side 4,500 cubits, the south side 4,500 cubits, the east side 4,500 cubits, and the west side 4,500 cubits.
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The pastureland for the city will be 250 cubits on the north, 250 cubits on the south, 250 cubits on the east, and 250 cubits on the west.
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What remains of the area, bordering on the sacred portion and running the length of it, will be 10,000 cubits on the east side and 10,000 cubits on the west side. Its produce will supply food for the workers of the city.
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The workers from the city who farm it will come from all the tribes of Israel.
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The entire portion will be a square, 25,000 cubits on each side. As a special gift you will set aside the sacred portion, along with the property of the city.
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"What remains on both sides of the area formed by the sacred portion and the city property will belong to the prince. It will extend eastward from the 25,000 cubits of the sacred portion to the eastern border, and westward from the 25,000 cubits to the western border. Both these areas running the length of the tribal portions will belong to the prince, and the sacred portion with the temple sanctuary will be in the center of them.
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So the property of the Levites and the property of the city will lie in the center of the area that belongs to the prince. The area belonging to the prince will lie between the border of Judah and the border of Benjamin.
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"As for the rest of the tribes: Benjamin will have one portion; it will extend from the east side to the west side.
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"Simeon will have one portion; it will border the territory of Benjamin from east to west.
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"Issachar will have one portion; it will border the territory of Simeon from east to west.
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"Zebulun will have one portion; it will border the territory of Issachar from east to west.
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"Gad will have one portion; it will border the territory of Zebulun from east to west.
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"The southern boundary of Gad will run south from Tamar to the waters of Meribah Kadesh, then along the Wadi [of Egypt] to the Great Sea.
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"This is the land you are to allot as an inheritance to the tribes of Israel, and these will be their portions," declares the Sovereign LORD.
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"These will be the exits of the city: Beginning on the north side, which is 4,500 cubits long,
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the gates of the city will be named after the tribes of Israel. The three gates on the north side will be the gate of Reuben, the gate of Judah and the gate of Levi.
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"On the east side, which is 4,500 cubits long, will be three gates: the gate of Joseph, the gate of Benjamin and the gate of Dan.
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"On the south side, which measures 4,500 cubits, will be three gates: the gate of Simeon, the gate of Issachar and the gate of Zebulun.
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"On the west side, which is 4,500 cubits long, will be three gates: the gate of Gad, the gate of Asher and the gate of Naphtali.
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"The distance all around will be 18,000 cubits. "And the name of the city from that time on will be: THE LORD IS THERE."

Luke chapter 2

1
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.
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(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)
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And everyone went to his own town to register.
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So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.
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He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.
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While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,
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and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
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And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.
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An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.
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But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.
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Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.
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This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
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Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
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"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."
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When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about."
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So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.
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When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,
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and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.
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But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
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The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
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On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise him, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he had been conceived.
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When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord
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(as it is written in the Law of the Lord, "Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord"),
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and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: "a pair of doves or two young pigeons."
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Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
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It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
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Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required,
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Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
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"Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace.
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For my eyes have seen your salvation,
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which you have prepared in the sight of all people,
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a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel."
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The child's father and mother marveled at what was said about him.
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Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against,
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so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too."
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There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage,
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and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying.
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Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
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When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth.
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And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.
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Every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Passover.
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When he was twelve years old, they went up to the Feast, according to the custom.
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After the Feast was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it.
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Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends.
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When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him.
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After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.
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Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.
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When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you."
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"Why were you searching for me?" he asked. "Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?"
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But they did not understand what he was saying to them.
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Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart.
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And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
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