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Saturday, November 17, 2018

Daily Devotion for September 19, 2017


Jacob and Joseph, Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo
"Jacob and Joseph" from The Ancestors of Christ, fresco in the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo c. 1512

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.



Morning Praise

Blessed are you, Lord God: Blessed are you for ever. Holy is your name: Blessed are you for ever. Great is your mercy for your people. In the morning I cry out to you: Blessed are you for ever.

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I praise you and give you glory: I bless you for calling me to be one of your holy people. Remain in my heart, and guide me in my love and service all of this day. Help me to shine your light before others and lead them to the way of faith. Holy Trinity of love, I praise you now and for ever.

Amen.

For Christians

Teach me, O Lord, to dispose my deeds so that they will serve in glorifying Your holy name. Take pity, O Lord, on all Christians. Hear the desires of all who cry out to You, and deliver them from evil. Save Your servants; send them comfort, consolation in their sorrows, and Your holy mercy.

O Lord, I especially pray for those who have in any way insulted, abused and grieved me. Do not punish them for the sake of me, a sinner; but pour Your mercy upon them. O Lord; I pray to You especially for all those whom I, a sinner, insulted or tempted in word, deed, thought, knowingly or unknowingly. O Lord God, forgive us our sins and mutual offenses. Dispel from every Christian heart all indignation, suspicion, anger, remembrance of evil, quarrels, and all that might hinder and lessen brotherly love. In Christ’s holy name, I ask this,

Amen.

Closing Prayer

And finally, grant me O Lord, I pray, the lamp of charity which never fails, that it may burn in me and shed its light on those around me, and that by its brightness I may share a vision of that holy City, where dwells the true and never-failing Light, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.


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.


Today’s “Remember the Bible” Question

What Bible verse tells us, “And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town”?

Answer: Matthew 10:11



Bible painting of Judah, <i>Judah and Tamar</i> by Emile Vernet, c. 1840
Judah and Tamar by Emile Vernet, c. 1840, showing Judah courting his wife (Genesis 38).

New Opportunities

“When one door closes, another opens, but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us.”

~ Alexander Graham Bell


Blue Latin Cross

Genesis 47:23-31 (ESV)

Joseph and the Famine [2]

Then Joseph said to the people, “Behold, I have this day bought you and your land for Pharaoh. Now here is seed for you, and you shall sow the land. And at the harvests you shall give a fifth to Pharaoh, and four fifths shall be your own, as seed for the field and as food for yourselves and your households, and as food for your little ones.”

And they said, “You have saved our lives; may it please my lord, we will be servants to Pharaoh.” So Joseph made it a statute concerning the land of Egypt, and it stands to this day, that Pharaoh should have the fifth; the land of the priests alone did not become Pharaoh’s.

Death of Jacob Bible

Thus Israel settled in the land of Egypt, in the land of Goshen. And they gained possessions in it, and were fruitful and multiplied greatly. And Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years. So the days of Jacob, the years of his life, were 147 years.

And when the time drew near that Israel must die, he called his son Joseph and said to him, “If now I have found favor in your sight, put your hand under my thigh and promise to deal kindly and truly with me. Do not bury me in Egypt, but let me lie with my fathers. Carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their burying place.” He answered, “I will do as you have said.” And he said, “Swear to me”; and he swore to him. Then Israel bowed himself upon the head of his bed.


Notes on the Scripture

J


oseph finalizes his creation of a more modern monarchy here, very similar to the monarchies that would dominate the world for millennia to come. Title to the land rested ultimately with the pharaoh, and he received a tax of 20% of the gross proceeds. Because Egypt was so fertile and well-settled in the Bronze Age, and because the tax to the monarch was so high — the tsars of Russia, for instance, would get only one part in thirteen — this would make the pharaoh one of the richest and most powerful people in the world.

It might seem eccentric that Jacob tells Joseph to put his “hand under my thigh” in order to swear an oath. But remember, Abraham made the same demand, when he sent his servant to find a wife for Isaac: “And Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his household, who had charge of all that he had, ‘Put your hand under my thigh, that I may make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and God of the earth.’” (Genesis 24:1-3)

The actual meaning of the expression “under my thigh” may be a little much for tender sensibilities: the word in Hebrew means “genitals”. Circumcision was the sign of the compact between Abraham and God, and Jacob is asking Joseph to swear his oath upon the sign of their covenant with God! It was the equivalent of putting one’s hand on the Bible in a courtroom. But this was just “too much information” when the Bible was first translated into English, and so almost every Christian Bible uses the more delicate phrase.

Jacob was the last single patriarch of the Hebrews and the ancestor of every Jew who has lived since. His very name — “Israel” — has come to be the name of the Jewish nation. It is no wonder that he wants to be buried in the land given to him by God, the land of his fathers before him and the generations to follow. He has accepted that his sons must live in Egypt; but, clearly, he foresees that this will be a temporary measure. And history has proven him out. No matter how many times over the last 3500 years the Jews have been dispersed, they have always returned to claim Canaan as their right, by the very word of God.



endless knot

Daily Inspiration

“ Joy's Pretend Faith ”

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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

Romans 12:2: Do not be conformed to this age [or world], but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.


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