Daily Devotion for August 16, 2015
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.
Our “Virtual Sunday Church” is a French hymn from @ 1730, sung in St. John’s Church (Episcopal), Detroit.
1. On Jordan's bank the Baptist's cry
announces that the Lord is nigh.
Awake and harken, for he brings
glad tidings of the King of kings!
2. Then cleansed be every life from sin:
make straight the way for God within,
and let us all our hearts prepare
for Christ to come and enter there.
3. We hail you as our Savior, Lord,
our refuge and our great reward.
Without your grace we waste away
like flowers that wither and decay.
4. Stretch forth your hand, our health restore,
and make us rise to fall no more.
O let your face upon us shine
and fill the world with love divine.
5. All praise to you, eternal Son,
whose advent has our freedom won,
whom with the Father we adore,
and Holy Spirit, evermore.
Music and Lyrics by Charles Coffin, 1736
Hymn Before Prayer
I bending my knee
In the eye of the Father who created me,
In the eye of the Son who purchased me,
In the eye of the Spirit who cleansed me,
In friendship and affection.
Through Thine own Anointed One, O God,
Bestow upon us fullness in our need:
Love towards God,
The affection of God,
The smile of God,
The wisdom of God,
The grace of God,
The fear of God,
And the will of God
To do on the world of the Three,
As angels and saints do in heaven;
Each shade and light,
Each day and night,
Each time in kindness,
Give Thou us Thy Spirit.
Prayer of Confession
Most merciful God, I confess that I have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what I have done, and by what I have left undone. I have not loved you with my whole heart; I have not loved my neighbors as myself; and I sorrow for these wrongful acts and omissions from the bottom of my heart. I humbly and fully repent all of my misdeeds, and pray that for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, you will have mercy on me and forgive me, not by my merits, but by that grace that He has granted those who confess his name. And I pray that you will be in my heart and walk with me, that I might sin no more.
Sunday Prayer of Praise to God's Glory
Heavenly God, you are the King eternal, immortal and invisible. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God; the same yesterday, today, and forever.
In times long past did you lay the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands: Yet they will perish, but you will endure; yes, all of them will grow old like a garment, as a coat you will change them, and they will be changed; but you are the same, and your years will have no end.
You alone are God, and do not change; and because of this, we may hope to be preserved. Are you not from eternity, O Lord our God, our Holy One? The everlasting God, even the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, who does not faint nor grow weary? There is no searching out your understanding, mighty Lord, but by our praise we may glorify your Holy Name, now and all our lives.
May the love of the Lord Jesus draw us to Himself;
May the power of the Lord Jesus strengthen us in his service;
May the joy of the Lord Jesus fill our souls.
May the blessling of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
Be among us and remain with us alway.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Psalm 37:7-11 (NKJV)
Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath;
Do not fret—it only causes harm.
For evildoers shall be cut off;
But those who wait on the Lord,
They shall inherit the earth.
For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more;
Indeed, you will look carefully for his place,
But it shall be no more.
But the meek shall inherit the earth,
And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.
1 Corinthians 2:6-10, 13-16 (ESV)
Among the mature we do speak wisdom, though it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to perish. But we speak God's wisdom, secret and hidden, which God decreed before the ages for our glory.
None of the rulers of this age understood this; for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But, as it is written, "What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him" -- these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God.
And we speak of these things in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual things to those who are spiritual.
Those who are unspiritual do not receive the gifts of God's Spirit, for they are foolishness to them, and they are unable to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. Those who are spiritual discern all things, and they are themselves subject to no one else's scrutiny. "For who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ.
Notes on the Scripture
hroughout the ages, many people have tried to prove that God exists. And just as many have tried to prove that He does not exist. Countless agnostics have tried to figure it out, letting myriad arguments pro and con fight it out in their minds.
But the existence of God, much less the presence of the Holy Spirit and the grace of Jesus Christ, cannot be proven or disproven with logic. What cannot be seen, cannot be discovered by the eye. Neither can what is spiritual be discovered by the mind. God can only be found in the heart and in the soul, for knowledge of Him is a spiritual gift.
When you find God, you are "subject to no one else's scrutiny". People who try to convince you that God does not exist are fools. They do not realize that logic and argument are fruitless; for, because God reveals himself to us only through the spirit, we cannot know Him or find him through debate.
When we read through book of Acts, we see Paul converting countless people, Jew and Gentile alike, through his words. But if you read closely, you will notice that his basic argument is not an appeal to logic.
Instead, Paul testifies. He tells of events; he tells of his own experience; he tells of the testimony and prophecy of others throughout the ages. He relates the words of Christ and the prophets.
The wisdom of God, just as in Paul's time when today's Scripture was written, "is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age." We cannot expect that the world will suddenly receive this wisdom. We can only share it, the best we are able, and let our spirit be seen through our actions.