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Thursday, May 24, 2018

Daily Devotion for April 3, 2017


<i>Baptism Day</i> by Clementine Hunter, ca. 1960.
Baptism Day by Clementine Hunter, ca. 1960.

Prayers

Scripture

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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 Guidance During the Day

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, according to my particular needs this day. Enable me to see the tasks you will set before me in the daily routine of my life, and let me set my hand to these tasks with the vigor and joy of one with whom you abide. And if I should face trials, suffering or failure, I pray that your hand will lift me up, and I may be refreshed. In the name of Christ, I pray,

Amen.

To Be Filled of the Spirit

Heavenly Father, fill me with Your Spirit until I am overflowing, as the sun is filled with light, until it spills out of me and illuminates everything it my path. Crowd out the flawed thoughts of my mind with your truth and wisdom; put so much of your knowledge and fear in my heart that there is no longer room for the seductive lies of this world. Comfort me in my pain, convict me in my transgressions, guide me when I am tested. Fill my being with energy and focus to spread your word and do your will, and, with the salvation of your grace through Jesus Christ, this will be enough for me.

Amen.

Prayer of Penitence

Almighty God, who does freely pardon all who repent and turn to Him, now fulfill in my contrite heart the promise of redeeming grace; forgiving all my sins, and cleansing me from an evil conscience; through the perfect sacrifice of Christ Jesus our Lord. And turn my heart to your will at every moment, I pray.

Amen.


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

Today’s “Remember the Bible” Question

Name the verse: “Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”

Answer: James 2:17



endless knot

Proverbs 14:26-27 (NKJV)

In the fear of the Lord there is strong confidence,
And His children will have a place of refuge.

The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
To turn one away from the snares of death.

Blue Latin Cross

Genesis 21:15-21 (ESV)

The Story of Abraham [33] - Hagar and Ishmael

When the water in the skin was gone, she put the child under one of the bushes. Then she went and sat down opposite him a good way off, about the distance of a bowshot, for she said, “Let me not look on the death of the child.”

And as she sat opposite him, she lifted up her voice and wept. And God heard the voice of the boy, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is. Stand up! Lift up the boy, and hold him fast with your hand, for I will make him into a great nation.”

Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. And she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink.

And God was with the boy, and he grew up. He lived in the wilderness and became an expert with the bow. He lived in the wilderness of Paran, and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt.


Notes on the Scripture

Hagar is lost in a barren wilderness where her chance of survival, even without a child, is negligible. (To see how barren this land is, look at this photograph of an Israeli settlement called “Moshav Paran”, built in the wilderness of Paran.) But God leads her to a tiny oasis and, by a miracle of His will, Ishmael not only lives, but fathers a great nation.

The Bible loses the story of Ishmael at this point; we hear no more about him or his progeny. The Koran, however, together with Islamic tradition, states that the nation founded by Ishmael is the Arabs. This makes sense in terms of the few last words the Bible gives us about Ishmael. He learns to live in the desert, getting his food by hunting and his water from an isolated well. This perfectly describes the heritage of Arabia, the Bedouins, a nation of people accustomed to nomadic desert life.

Because they lived on land nobody else wants, the Arabs were not a force in the formative years of the middle East or, indeed, until the rise of Islam in the 7th century A.D. They had no king, no borders, and no religion; they were tied together only by language and culture, and survived as a distinct people primarily because of their isolation.

As individuals or small groups, however, they spread widely through the deserts of North Africa and Syria, and would often appear as small groups in other cultures. There were Arab Jews and then Arab Christians; in fact, even today, probably 10% of the world's Arabs are Christian.


Hagar and Ishmael in the Wilderness
Hagar and Ishamael in the Wilderness (detail) by Gustav Corot, ca. 1835.
(See the full painting here.)

Daily Inspiration

“Presenting Our Requests”

Current Memory Verse     Remember the Bible





Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

Philippians 4:6: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.


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Daily Quiz

Top score(s) on the Daily Quiz for Apr 03, 2017 were:
Sylvia Banda (12)
Tom Kraft (11)

Top score(s) on Match-a-Verse:
Pam Carpenter (9 out of 9)
Greg Flippin (9 out of 9)
Norman Daniels (9 out of 9)
Kathryn Halfman (9 out of 9)
Sylvia Banda (9 out of 9)
Elaine Gibson (9 out of 9)

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