Daily Devotion for July 19, 2017
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.
It may not be at the battle’s front my Lord will have need of me;
But if by a still, small voice He calls to paths I do not know,
I’ll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in Yours,
I’ll go where You want me to go.
I’ll go where You want me to go, dear Lord,
O’er mountain, or plain, or sea;
I’ll say what You want me to say, dear Lord,
I’ll be what You want me to be.
Perhaps today there are loving words which Jesus would have me speak;
There may be now, in the paths of sin, some wand’rer whom I should seek.
O Savior, if You will be my Guide, though dark and rugged the way,
My voice shall echo the message sweet,
I’ll say what You want me to say.
There’s surely somewhere a lowly place in earth’s harvest fields so wide,
Where I may labor through life’s short day for Jesus, the Crucified.
So, trusting my all unto Your care, I know You always love me!
I’ll do Your will with a heart sincere,
I’ll be what You want me to be.
Music by Carrie E. Rounsefell (1894)
Lyrics by Mary Brown and Charles E. Prior (1898)
Prayer for Faith During this Day
Holy God, I am weak, and sometimes the way grows fearsome; for this world is filled with evil, hiding at every corner, ready to steal my precious joy in You, craving to destroy my soul. Help me to keep my faith today, through every trial and doubt I face. Stay close to me; Holy Spirit, abide in me and make your presence known in everything I see and do. Give me strength the whole day through, mighty God, in the name of Christ I pray,
Prayer to Relinquish Shame
Oh Lord Christ, by your death and resurrection you have made forgiveness for my sin possible; and having confessed and repented of my sin, let me have confidence in your forgiveness. Let me not be ashamed; for to feel shame at my sin is to doubt your power. Rather fill me with faith in my salvation, that I may boldly praise your name before all the world, and live in love and constant growth in your Spirit and holiness.
To Love Jesus
Oh, my soul, how much longer do you wish to be so stingy with Jesus? Why so negligent towards Jesus who made You? Why so lazy towards Jesus who redeemed you? Who do you want to love, if you do not want to love Jesus?
A Prayer After Reading Scripture
May the word I have read, Lord, be planted deeply in my mind and heart. Help me not to walk away and forget it, but to meditate on it and obey it and so built my life on the rock of your truth.
(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 a Bible verse that tells us Christ will forgive us for our sins, if we confess them.
If God is your co-pilot, swap seats.
1 Peter 5:12-14 (ESV)
By Silvanus, a faithful brother as I regard him, I have written briefly to you, exhorting and declaring that this is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it. She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings, and so does Mark, my son. Greet one another with the kiss of love.
Peace to all of you who are in Christ.
Notes on the Scripture
ilvanus, who is called “Silas” in Acts, was an important person in the early church and is a saint (in denominations that have saints). We first meet him in Acts 15,where he is called one of the “leading men among the brethren” (i.e., the Christian community at Jerusalem). He was entrusted by the Council of Jerusalem to Antioch to transmit the critically important decision about Gentiles joining the church.
Later on, he accompanied Paul on parts of his first and second journeys; from the chronology of Acts, we can deduce that Silas was also engaged in some missionary work independent of Paul. He is mentioned, along with Timothy, in three of Paul’s epistles to the churches in Corinth and Thessalonica, which Silvanus had been instrumental in founding.
In the icon below, he is depicted in chains. This celebrates the incident at Philippi, when he and Paul were freed from prison by an earthquake, which broke their chains and opened the prison door. (Acts 16:25-28)
We also know, from today’s passage, that he joined Peter in Rome. Subsequent oral history designates him as the bishop of Macedonia and/or Corinth, which makes sense, as that was the area in which he had done extensive missionary work.
“Mark, my son” almost certainly refers to the rather odd man who would eventually write the Gospel of Mark. Peter most likely uses the term “son” because he had personally been responsible for Mark’s conversion.
Most likely, “she who is at Babylon” is not a person, but code for the Christians still in Rome. Scholars agree that “Babylon” here is a somewhat sarcastic reference to Rome, where depravity and the persecution of Jews and Christians was still growing. It would have been dangerous for Peter to refer to Christians in Rome, or even name the city, in case the letter were intercepted.
Notice, also, that Peter calls Mark “my son.” This is strong evidence that Mark’s gospel came largely from his association with Peter.