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Daily Devotion for May 14, 2017
Mothers’ Day (US)
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.
with heart and hands and voices,
who wondrous things has done,
in whom this world rejoices;
who from our mothers' arms
has blessed us on our way
with countless gifts of love,
and still is ours today.
2. O may this bounteous God
through all our life be near us,
with ever joyful hearts
and blessed peace to cheer us;
and keep us still in grace,
and guide us when perplexed;
and free us from all ills,
in this world and the next.
3. All praise and thanks to God
the Father now be given;
the Son, and him who reigns
with them in highest heaven;
the one eternal God,
whom earth and heaven adore;
for thus it was, is now,
and shall be evermore.
Music by Johann Crüger (1647)
Lyrics by Martin Rinkart (1663), tr. Catherine Winkworth (1858)
For Unity in Sunday Worship
Father of mercy, your love embraces everyone, and through the Resurrection of your Son you call me and all who pray with me into your wonderful light. Dispel our darkness and make us a people with one heart and one voice, forever singing your praise, in Jesus, the Christ, our Lord.
Sunday Hymn (from Psalm 51)
God, be merciful to me;
On Thy grace I rest my plea;
In Thy vast, abounding grace,
My transgressions all erase.
Wash me wholly from my sin;
Cleanse from every ill within.
For my sins before me rise,
Ever present to my eyes.
I have sinned ‘gainst Thee alone.
In Thy sight this evil done;
That Thy judgment may be clear,
And Thy sentence just appear.
Lo, brought forth was I in sin;
When conceived I was unclean.
Lo, Thou dost desire to find
Truth sincere within the mind:
And Thou wilt within my heart
Wisdom unto me impart.
Then with hyssop sprinkle me,
And from sin I clean shall be.
Wash me from its stain, and lo,
I shall whiter be than snow.
Make me hear joy’s cheering voice;
Make my broken bones rejoice.
From my sins hide Thou Thy face;
My iniquities erase.
O my God, renew my heart,
And a spirit right impart.
Cast me not away from Thee,
Nor Thy Spirit take from me.
Give salvation’s joy again,
And a willing mind sustain.
Then thy perfect ways I’ll show
That transgressors may them know;
They converted then shall be,
Sinners shall be turned to Thee.
[God’s ability to forgive sin.]
Finally, let me go forth in thanks for the victory I have been given through our Lord Jesus Christ. May I be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, and always remembering that in the Lord our labor is not in vain.
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.
Proverbs 14:7 (NKJV)
When you do not perceive in him the lips of knowledge.
1 Peter:3-9 (ESV)
Born Again to a Living Hope
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith — more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire — may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Notes on the Scripture
eter wrote long sentences! He was neither the great theologian nor the master of words that Paul was; but he was a practical man, as well as a true holy man, someone whose very person was important. For he had walked with Jesus since the early days of His ministry, had witnessed the great events of Jesus’ life and resurrection, and had been treated as a special man anointed to continue Christ’s teaching after the Ascension.
If these long sentences are slightly hard to untangle, the concepts they contain are simpler to understand than some of the dense theological material we see in Paul’s epistles. Peter was more practical; Paul was Christ’s army and Peter was Christ’s home.
The passage today states the basics of Christian belief. If it is not clearly written, it is easy to understand. Let us look at the first long sentence in the first paragraph, breaking it down into question and answer form:
We have been born again to a new hope. How did this happen? Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead. What did this resurrection do for us? Our rebirth gave us new identities: children of God. And like all children, we are natural recipients of an inheritance from our Father. What is this inheritance like? It will not perish or fade or be defiled; it is eternal. Where is it? God is keeping it safe for us in heaven. How can we safeguard it? By faith. What does our inheritance consist of? Salvation. When will we receive it? In the “last time.”
If you read through the entire passage slowly, once concept at a time, it is not so overwhelming. The last paragraph is especially comforting, for these Roman Christians scattered all over Turkey were being asked to believe in a man they could not see and had never seen. But Peter, who had seen Christ teaching, working miracles, crucified, and resurrected — Peter can testify that all of this actually did happen.
The recipients of this epistle were going through some very tough times, having been evicted from their homes in Rome, the great city of the world, and exiled into the hinterlands. So Peter, first off, gives them a pep talk. He reminds him of the miracle of their salvation, to boost their faith during their troubles. And simply because he is who he is, his credibility and effectiveness are unique.