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Friday, October 28, 2016

Daily Devotion for July 2, 2012



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lessons and scripture

Lord's Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.


Prayer of Thanks for God's Creation

O Lord God of Israel and God of the nations, you are the only God in heaven above or the earth below. I walk before you with all my heart. I bless your name in the morning when I rise and in the evening when I sleep, and all the day when your creation fills my eye. Bless me to remember you this day. When I see and hear the thousand miracles of your creation, let me see them anew, recalling that you have made them, and no other; that I may live in your presence among the common miracles I take for granted. Through Christ I pray,


Prayer for Peace

I thank you, Master and Lover of mankind, King of the ages and giver of all good things, for destroying the dividing wall of enmity and granting peace to those who seek your mercy. I appeal to you to awaken the longing for a peaceful life in all those who are filled with hatred for their neighbors, thinking especially of those at war or preparing for war.

Grant peace to your servants. Implant in them the fear of you and confirm in them love one for another. Extinguish every dispute and banish all temptations to disagreement. For you are our peace and to you we ascribe glory: to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and forever and unto ages of ages.

I pray, Lord our God, for all those who suffer from acts of war. I pray for your peace and your mercy in the midst of the great suffering that people are now inflicting on each other. Accept the prayers of your Church, so that by your goodness peace may return to all peoples. Hear us and have mercy on us.



God of love, Father of all, the darkness that covered the earth has given way to the bright dawn of your Word made flesh. Make me and all who confess your holy name people of this light. Make us faithful to your Word that we may bring your life to the waiting world. Grant this through Christ our Lord.


(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.

endless knot

Proverbs 15:27

Those who acquire things unjustly gain trouble for their house,

but those who hate bribes will live.

Blue Latin Cross

Jonah 3:1-5

Jonah Goes to Nineveh

Then the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord.

Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city, three days' journey in breadth. Jonah began to go into the city, going a day's journey. And he called out, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”

And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.

Notes on the Scripture

Jonah has now gone through a great purification. He rebelled against God's will and suffered God's wrath, a virtual death imposed upon him by the forces of nature. He showed, however, that those who are faithful to God and do not worship idols may be saved, even though they have sinned directly against God, for even the God of the Old Testament is merciful to those who love Him.

Having been chastised by his loving Father, Jonah now undertakes the commission given to him in Chapter 1. Yet he is reluctant, and for a reason, which will be fleshed out later in the book.

Jonah's prophecy of doom is notably more embraced in the heathen land of Assyria than it had been in the northern Kingdom of Israel. Nineveh was, by this time, a magnificent city and the capital of Assyria, located in Mesopotamia (Iraq). But it was not God's country. The Assyrians, like the Greeks and many heathen cultures, worshipped a pantheon of gods, represented by idols, of whom Ashur was the most important.

But the people (who, like the Hebrews, speak Aramaic) believed Jonah and did as he instructed them. This creates a strong contrast to Israel at the time. Israel had just split into two kingdoms, Israel in the north and Judah in the south, when Jeroboam rebelled against the rightful king, Rehoboam, and led the northern Kingdom of Israel into idol worship, despite Jonah's futile protestations. But Assyria, a nation of idolaters, repents of its sins and acts in reverence of the one God. Things seem precisely backwards.

We once again see the important period of forty days appear. Nobody knows why this number is so important in Judeo-Christian history, but again and again it crops up as the correct length of time for penance and fasting; Noah's flood lasted forty days, and even Christ fasted for forty days after His baptism. Possibly it simply represents a month in some early calendar, because it is reasonable and effective to construct a calendar of forty-day periods to follow the solar year.

The prophet Jonah by James Tissot

The Prophet Jonah by James Tissot, c. 1888.

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Matthew 5:16: Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

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