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Saturday, November 18, 2017

Daily Devotion for January 11, 2014



Job Rebuked by His Friends by Wm. Blake, ca. 1825. “I am as one mocked of his neighbour, who calleth upon God, and he answereth him: the Just upright man is laughed to scorn.” (Job 12:4)

Prayers

Scripture

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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.

Amen.


Prayer for the Day Ahead (from an old Prayer Book)

Almighty God, my heavenly Father, who declares your glory and shows forth your creation in the heavens and in the earth; Deliver me, I pray, in whatever work my hand may find today, from the service of mammon; and assist me, that I may do the work which you have given me to do, in truth, in beauty, and in righteousness, with singleness of heart as your servant, and to the benefit of my fellow men; for the sake of him who came among us, humbling himself to serve all who came to him and received him, your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

Prayer of Abandonment

Father, I abandon myself into your hands; do with me what you will. Whatever you may do, I thank you: I am ready for all, I accept all. Let only your will be done in me, and in all Your creatures — I wish no more than this, O Lord.

Into your hands I commend my soul; I offer it to you with all the love of my heart, for I love you Lord, and so need to give myself, to surrender myself into your hands, without reserve, and with boundless confidence,
For you are my Father.

Amen.

Irish Blessing

Wisdom of years be yours
Joy of friendships be yours
Wealth of memories be yours
Fruit of endevor be yours
Hope of heaven be yours
Peace of God be yours.


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


Guardian Angel by Franz Dvorak, ca. 1911. A reminder of the sweetness of Christ's grace.

Job 14:1-2 (KJV)

Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble.
He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.

Blue Latin Cross

Matthew 15:10-20 (ESV)

What Defiles a Person [1]

And he called the people to him and said to them, “Hear and understand: It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.”

Then the disciples came and said to him, “Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?” He answered, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be rooted up. Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.”

But Peter said to him, “Explain the parable to us.”

And he said, “Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach and is expelled? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone.”


Notes on the Scripture

The words of the first paragraph, which seem like a simple statement to us, were shocking to the Jews. For over a thousand years, they had been taught that their dietary laws were mandatory, if one wanted to be righteous before God. To eat pork (for example) was to defile oneself, to become unclean in God's eyes. It was sinful. The entire basis of Judaism lay in literal compliance with the law. To say that this is outright wrong, as Jesus does here, cuts the legs out from underneath the Pharisees' religious beliefs.

In the Sermon on the Mount, specifically the first section in Matthew 5, Jesus had already preached that the righteousness of the heart and mind was more important to God than the outward compliance with ritual; but there, He also gave the rather perplexing gloss, that He had not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill it. He attacked Jewish hypocrisy, not Judaism.

Similarly, when He was accused of impiety because his disciples gathered food on the Sabbath, and when He healed the man with the withered hand on the Sabbath (Matthew 12), He sought to conciliate his teachings and actions with the law of Moses; his defense to his critics was that they were interpreting the law incorrectly. Here, however, Christ seems to take his message a full step closer to outright revolution. His words imply that a core belief of the Pharisees, based explicitly on the law of Moses, is simply wrong. And in fact, the parallel version in Mark spells it out for us: “(Thus he declared all foods clean.)” (Mark 7:19b).

This raises a huge headache for the Bible reader. How can we square Christ's rejection of the dietary laws with his previous statments, e.g. “until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished”? (Matthew 5:18)

We have seen, in previous chapters, that Christ often would transform a literal outward law, that is, a law pertaining to some particular external action, into a spiritual equivalent, a more general rule for the heart. In many cases, He would make a Mosaic law more stringent, such as telling us that holding hatred in our heart was the equivalent of murder.

So, as to the dietary laws, we might say that Christ has not completely abolished them, but rather transformed them. He continues to speak in terms of defilement, but He is concerned not with defilement of the body, but rather, defilement of the soul. The laws that we not put anything unclean into our mouth are transformed into rules that we not allow anything unclean to come out of our mouth. We can surely harm our bodies by ingesting something harmful, but this will effect only our life on earth; what will effect our righetousness before God, and thus our eternal life, is what we emit from out mouth.





endless knot


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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

James 1:19-21 (NIV): My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent, and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.


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Comments (10)

Topic: Page Two | Devotion for Day of January 11, 2014 | Daily Prayer
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Mason says...
We have changed the Comments section so that it will include the comments from the previous day.

This involves messing with some very complex code written by somebody else, so it anyone notices a problem, let us hear about it.

If you have the order set to the default, "Newest", yesterday's comments should appear right after today's. There is no break between days, although you will notice a date in grey at the bottom left of each post
11th January 2014 2:30pm
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Jan Marra (La Salle, US) says...
Thank you for the teacher story. It's a wonderful reminder that we need to see our Lord, Jesus, in every person. That's easy to do when they look like us or are sweet and nice. But to see Jesus in the most difficult of people is something we need to pray for the grace to be able to do.
11th January 2014 10:43am
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Mason says...
Thanks for the extra reminder. I'm dealing with a difficult person in a difficult situation right now. I need to work with the Spirit on it every day!
11th January 2014 12:54pm
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Michael A. Loos Sr. (West Babylon NY, US) says...
Beautiful prayers and devotion but what captured my heart was the Teacher story. Which of course can be OUR story once we put people first and love with the heart and humility of Christ. Precious call to action! God bless and thank you as I hit day three of PT hot and heavy on the road to recovery. Amen.
11th January 2014 10:01am
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Kathryn (Okemos, US) says...
Thank you for the teacher story. I loved it. It made me cry.
11th January 2014 8:12am
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helen timmler says...
I am a retired teacher and this is absolutely true. Shared with my fellow teachers. Thank you.
11th January 2014 7:50am
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Christine Conkling (Walton, US) says...
As I read page one I thought to myself I must comment and say what a wonderful devotion it was. Then I finished page 2! Just lovely. Thank you Mason!
11th January 2014 5:37am
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FRED REEB (NEWFIELD, US) says...
Smile THANK YOUR FOR ALL YOU DO FOR THE BODY OF CHRIST! YOUR ARTICLES AND DEPICTIONS OF THE GOSPEL ARE INSPIRATIONAL, I HAVE BEEN A STUDENT OF THE BIBLE FOR MANY YEARS AND HAVE LEARNED MANY ASPECTS OF THE BIBLE FROM THIS SITE. GOD BLESS YOU AND ALL IN YOUR MINISTRY.
11th January 2014 1:24am
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Florence Yu-Pe Benito (Cebu City, Philippines) says...
Just before I got to the end of the story, I thought I'm going to write a comment and share how touched I am with the story of Mrs. Thompson....and yes, how she made me cry. Thank you for the very heartwarming story, Mrs. Thompson....and Mr. Mason....I, too, learned that we should be humble enough to admit and humble enough to open our eyes, ears, and heart that no matter how high your stature in society is or how successful you are in life, there is so much value that we can pick up from ... Read More
10th January 2014 8:06pm
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Mason says...
I don't know how two people made a thumbs down vote on such a sweet post. I'm guessing it was a mis-type.

But this reminds me of something I wanted to say. Anyone who does a thumbs down vote (intentionally Smile), I think, owes it to the writer to make a reply explaining why (unless there is already a criticism you agree with)
11th January 2014 12:58pm
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Stephanie Prudence (Tucson, US) says...
Thank you Mason for your reply to my inquiry yesterday. It makes sense to me now, that as you point out, I have "inherited" original sin. I appreciate you and your website very much. Have a great day.
9th January 2014 10:10am
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Cindy Moniz (DAFTER, US) says...
I love this site! It has been so helpful in learning the Word. I looked up Gennesaret from today's scripture, and found that it means garden of the prince. Your site makes me think on things that are new and challenging, and help me to grow. Thank you!
9th January 2014 9:55am
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Cindy (DAFTER, US) says...
I love this site! It has been so helpful in learning the Word. I looked up Gennesaret from today's scripture, and found that it means garden of the prince. Your site makes me think on things that are new and challenging, and help me to grow. Thank you!
9th January 2014 9:53am
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Michael A. Loos Sr. (West Babylon NY, US) says...
Thank you Mason and all who contribute here as this has been an especially meaningful devotion for me the past year in addition to all my other morning devotions and meditations with The Lord. Following full knee replacement surgery this past Monday, and discharged yesterday and at home struggling with pain, fear and anxiety, I need every bit of this page to seek comfort in Him. The artwork, the music, the scripture and the prayers are so inspiring. I think of His pain on the cross for ME and ... Read More
9th January 2014 7:21am
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patti (US) says...
Sorry Bernie...I meant to choose like but my finger must have hit the thumbs down.....my apologies!
9th January 2014 6:54am
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Bernie de la Rionda (Jacksonville, US) says...
Years ago in searching the internet I stumbled upon the Daily Prayer website. Since then in addition to reading the Bible I make it a point to read the daily scripture and notes. My day wouldn't be complete without reading it....I try to do it first thing in the morning. Mr. Barge, you are a gifted writer. Thank you and God bless you.

Bernie
9th January 2014 3:34am
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