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Daily Devotion for September 27, 2012
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 for the Morning
Oh my God, You know my weakness and failings, and that without Your help I can accomplish nothing for the good of souls, my own and others'. Grant me, therefore, the help of your grace. Grant it according to my particular needs this day. Enable me to see the task you will set before me in the daily routine of my life, and help me work hard at my appointed tasks. Teach me to bear patiently all the trials of suffering or failure that may come to me today.
Teach me Your Way
Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth; Unite my heart to fear your name. I will praise You, O Lord my God, with all my heart, and I will glorify your name forever more. Great is your mercy toward me, and You have delivered my soul from the depths of hell. All praise be to You, Oh God my Redeemer, today and forever.
Now to Him who has given me grace in accordance with His gospel, in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for many ages past, but now revealed and made known by the command of the eternal God, so that all mankind might find the obedience that comes from faith; to the only God, the God of wisdom and truth, be glory forever through His only son, Jesus Christ.
Think of the day ahead in terms of God with you, and visualize health, strength, guidance, purity, calm confidence, and victory as the gifts of His presence.
and adds persuasiveness to his lips.
Gracious words are like a honeycomb,
sweetness to the soul and health to the body.
Genesis 37:12-24 (abridged)
Joseph Sold by His Brothers 
Now his brothers went to pasture their father's flock near Shechem. And Israel said to Joseph, “Are not your brothers pasturing the flock at Shechem? Come, I will send you to them.” And he said to him, “Here I am.” So he said to him, “Go now, see if it is well with your brothers and with the flock, and bring me word.”
So Joseph went after his brothers and found them at Dothan.
They saw him from afar, and before he came near to them they conspired against him to kill him. They said to one another, “Here comes this dreamer. Come now, let us kill him and throw him into one of the pits. Then we will say that a fierce animal has devoured him, and we will see what will become of his dreams.”
But when Reuben heard it, he rescued him out of their hands, saying, “Let us not take his life.” And Reuben said to them, “Shed no blood; throw him into this pit here in the wilderness, but do not lay a hand on him” — that he might rescue him out of their hand to restore him to his father. So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe, the robe of many colors that he wore. And they took him and threw him into a pit. The pit was empty; there was no water in it.
Notes on the Scripture
Joseph's brothers actually have reason to dislike him; if you missed the Scripture from day before yesterday, you might want to read it quickly to catch up. (Click here: Genesis 37:2-11.)
We must remember, when reading Genesis, that it is set in a time before the Ten Commandments; the only laws given by God to Abramah and his seed were that they should worship Him and circumcise their male children. Our revulsion at murder is, in large part, training given to us, by virtue of thousands of years of moral development.
For primative man, murder does not have the meaning it has for us. In the highly developed Roman Empire, there was no general concept of the intrinsic value of a human life. And we still struggle with it, for, like all moral laws, the law against killing other people often runs afoul of our innate desires. Where there is no evil in the human heart, there is no need for a moral law.
But the brothers certainly have great reasons not to murder Joseph. First, of course, a brother was an invaluable asset in a time when life was perilous. Second, Jacob, their father, loves Joseph; he is powerful and would be furious if he learned about such an act.
Still, the brothers hated Joseph so much they would have killed him, but for Reuben. His motivation for refusing to join the plot is not spelled out. Perhaps he does not hate Joseph as much as the others, or perhaps he loves his father and knows how stricken he would be by Joseph's death.