arrow to previous dayarrow to next day
Monday, October 24, 2016

Daily Devotion for February 23, 2013

Detail from the enamelled altarpiece at  Klosterneuburg Monastery, ca. 1280, by Nicholas of Verdun. The tenth plague of Egypt is shown.
Detail from the enamelled altarpiece at Klosterneuburg Monastery, ca. 1280, by Nicholas of Verdun. The tenth plague of Egypt is shown.



234 people in our community are currently praying with you.

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.


A traditional spiritual done in ballad style by two great old voices.

Prayer for the Day (written by Jane Austen)

Give us grace Almighty Father, so to pray, as to deserve to be heard, to address Thee with our hearts, as with our lips. Thou art everywhere present, from Thee no secret can be hid. May the knowledge of this, teach us to fix our thoughts on Thee, with reverence and devotion that we pray not in vain.

May we now, and on each return of night, consider how the past day has been spent by us, what have been our prevailing thoughts, words and actions during it, and how far we can acquit ourselves of evil.

Have we thought irreverently of Thee, have we disobeyed Thy commandments, have we neglected any known duty, or willingly given pain to any human being? Incline us to ask our hearts these questions oh! God, to save us from deceiving ourselves by pride or vanity.

Give us a thankful sense of the blessings in which we live, of the many comforts of our lot; that we may not deserve to lose them by discontent or indifference. Hear us almighty God, for his sake who has redeemed us, and taught us thus to pray.


A Lenten Prayer

Almighty God, you alone can bring into order the unruly wills and affections of sinners: Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise; that, among the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.


Prayer to Cast Aside Bad Habits

Mighty Holy Spirit, face of the one true God, help me, for I have slipped into bad habits that thwart my attempts to evade the sinful temptations of life. You have promised that you would not let me be tempted beyond my ability, and for every temptation would provide an escape, so that I might endure it. Holy Spirit, show me my escape from my bad habit. Let me resolve to work on it, to pray on it, to turn it into a habit of good; for I know how you love righteous conduct, and my love for you longs to please you.



Finally, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, let me think about these things. What I have learned and received, let me do; and the God of peace be with us all.


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

<i>And There Was a Great Cry in Egypt</i>, Arthur Hacker, ca. 1893
And There Was a Great Cry in Egypt, Arthur Hacker, ca. 1893.

The Open Door

“When one door closes, another opens, but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us.”

~ Alexander Graham Bell

Blue Latin Cross

Exodus 12:21-28 (ESV)

The Passover [3]

Then Moses called all the elders of Israel and said to them, “Go and select lambs for yourselves according to your clans, and kill the Passover lamb. Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin.

None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you.

You shall observe this rite as a statute for you and for your sons forever. And when you come to the land that the Lord will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. And when your children say to you, ‘What do you mean by this service?’ you shall say, ‘It is the sacrifice of the Lord's Passover, for he passed over the houses of the people of Israel in Egypt, when he struck the Egyptians but spared our houses.’” And the people bowed their heads and worshiped.

Then the people of Israel went and did so; as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.

Notes on the Scripture

We are not sure exactly what hyssop was. It was a small aromatic plant used in cleansing, because it covered up foul odors. Marjoram is a common guess. But here, the cleansing becomes ritual, since there was no odor being disguised.

In fact, this section of Scripture is really the beginning of Judeo-Christian ritual worship. The Jews had obligations, but they were not performed under a set of rules (unless men devised them). People would build altars and burn food as a sacrifice, and circumcise their sons, but there was no strictly prescribed way to go about it.

Jewish children learning about Passover

So the magnitude of the event is reflected in the complexity and formalism of the actions the Jews must take to satisfy God. Following the elaborate instructions is obedience for obedience' sake. Does the angel of the Lord need to see lamb's blood on the top and side-posts of the door frame to know that Jews live within? No; but He needs to know that "devout" Jews, Jews dedicated to following the commandments of God, live within.

Moreover, this ritual helps ensure that the relationship with the Lord will continue when the participants are long dead. Part of the instruction is that the exact same ritual be performed every year in exactly the same manner. An archaic form of written Hebrew had probably come into existence — in fact, the Hebrew alphabet originated in form from Egyptian hieroglyphics — but books were not common (especially among slaves) and likely very few Hebrews could read or write.

Besides, Judaism is a religion of families. Strict adherence to the Passover ritual would ensure that the children would be taught, again and again. The miracle of God's rescue from Egypt would never be forgotten. Its importance would not dim with time; and surely, when American slaves sang "Let my people go" over 3000 years later, everybody knew exactly what they were talking about.

endless knot

Daily Prayer Community —>

Current Memory Verse     Remember the Bible

Today in Daily Prayer

Memory Verse

Matthew 5:38: You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your shirt, let him have your cloak as well.

About Daily Prayer

Follow us on Facebook

If you are new to Daily Prayer, welcome. This page provides a non-denominational, Bible-based devotion every day, including prayers, Scripture, Bible study, music, and art, designed to be usable for worship and the deepening of faith by any person who confesses Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

We hope you will take a look around at some of the features. Registration is not necessary, although if you do register, you will be able to read and make Comments on the Daily Prayer Community page, be greeted by name, and record your scores on our Daily Bible Quiz, Match-a-Verse, and Memorize Favorite Bible Verses features.

We do not email anything, except replies to emails from readers. Registration asks for an email address as a means of verifying that people are real, but this is kept completely private and never used. (Also, if you contact us asking that the Daily Devotion or Daily Inspiration be emailed to you every day, we will have to say “sorry”. Daily Prayer is only available online.)

“The mind of God is greater than all the minds of men, so let all men leave the gospel just as God has delivered it unto us.” ~ Charles Haddon Spurgeon