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Daily Devotion for May 6, 2018
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.
You can find the story of this lovely old hymn in today’s Daily Inspiration.
I need thee every hour
Most gracious Lord;
No tender voice like thine
Can peace afford.
I need thee oh I need thee,
Every hour I need thee.
Oh bless me now my savior
I come to thee.
I need thee every hour;
Stay thou near by.
Temptations loose their power
When thou art nigh.
I need thee every hour,
Most holy one.
Oh make me thine indeed,
Thou blessed son.
Music and Lyrics by Annie S. Hawks, Stanton Lee Endicott, and Robert Lowry
For the Spirit of Prayer
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, oh Lord. Let your Holy Spirit guide me in my prayer and in thought, and grant me the grace to listen and hear your Word. Soften my heart, that I may be directed by your truth, and not the devices of my body and mind. In the name of Christ I ask this,
Sunday Hymn (from Psalm 51)
Ornament from French
Bible, ca. 1440.
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 our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, and Spirit of God amidst us, direct our way unto you. Make us to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you; to the end we may establish our hearts unblameable in holiness before you, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
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.
Psalm 92:1-2, 4 (NKJV)
It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
And to sing praises to Your name, O Most High;
To declare Your lovingkindness in the morning,
And Your faithfulness every night,
For You, Lord, have made me glad through Your work;
I will triumph in the works of Your hands.
John 17:20-26 (ESV)
“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.
Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.
O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
Notes on the Scripture
Jesus loves us, and He wants us to love each other. He prayed to God the Father on behalf of his disciples, but not only them; He prayed on behalf of those who would believe in them, because of what the disciples would tell them. That includes you, and me, and every other person on earth who confesses the name of Jesus and lives in his love and grace.
here is no more vivid illustration of human pride and human anger than the self-righteous violence that Christians have done to each other in the 2000 years since Christ. One person believes it is right to pray in front of a statue of a saint or the Virgin Mary; another believes that representations of people or other images is wrong. One person believes that our salvation is predestined, another that we have free will and the outcome is not preordained. The silly disagreements about worship and theology that people can create are as numerous as grains of sand on a beach.
And we have so much belief in the infallibility of our thoughts that we sometimes follow our thoughts, rather than reading the simple clear message of today’s reading. Christ says, “The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”
How clear and simple is this beautiful message. Those of us who believe in Christ are one. Christ instructs us to love each other. And yet time and time again, people will scorn, berate, imprison and murder each other over silly little matters. Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians get in fights about whether it is correct to cross oneself left to right, or right to left. English Protestants robbed, burned, and murdered Catholics, and the Catholics certainly returned the favor.
This is one matter in which you can easily follow Christ, rather than commit the sin of pride. Who did Christ come to save? “[W]hoever believes in Him.” (John 3:16) Love and pray for anyone who confesses Christ, even if you think they have a wrong philosophy or theology. Even if they are sinners. Even if they have wrong ideas in their head, for without doubt, I have wrong ideas in my head as well. Worship as the spirit moves you to worship, and let others do the same, without judging them.
Almost no religious practices or forms of worship, over which we argue so heatedly, come from Christ. They come from Satan, who claps his hands and laughs in delight every time two Christians fight over some meaningless issue of doctrine.