Evening Devotion for February 11, 2019
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.
A Latin/English Gloria with a Brazilian Samba flavor? Only the BTC!
Prayer for Personal Conduct (from 1 Timothy)
Lord God, I pray that, for the rest of this day and tomorrow, my conduct will be like that you have set for your clergy: Above reproach. May I be temperate, sensible, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, and not violent, but gentle. May I never be quarrelsome, always seeking peace even in disagreement, and may my love be for you and my fellow man, not for money.
I pray that I manage my own household well. If I have any children in my charge, I pray to that I may take the time to see that they are in control and behaving with proper respect. Grant me a good reputation with outsiders, so that I will not fall into disgrace and the snare of the devil. This I pray through my Lord Christ, whose love and attention ever gave us an example of conduct,
Have mercy on me, Oh Lord, for I am a humble and miserable sinner. [At this point, pause to remember specific sins you have committed during the day and speak or think them.] I renounce all of these sins, heavenly Father, and repent of them, and I promise to make every effort not to repeat them.
Have mercy on me, pardon me for these offences and any I might have omitted from forgetfulness or ignorance; in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior, I pray for forgiveness. And I pray that your Holy Spirit may dwell with me in the coming day, to comfort me, to give me strength against temptation, and to guide me into the path of righteousness.
Prayer for Freedom from Fear
O Lord, I beseech you to deliver me, and all of your children, from the fear of the unknown future; from fear of failure; from fear of poverty; from fear of bereavement; from fear of loneliness; from fear of sickness and pain; from fear of age; from fear of death. Help us, O Father, by your grace to love and fear only you, and fill our hearts with cheerful courage and loving trust in you; through our Lord and Master Jesus Christ.
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.
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.
Losing the Message
We, as a church, have failed to communicate effectively the Christian message to the present generation, and this generation needs it so desperately.
I say this because I have found that the educated man today is the anxious man. He has a sickening realization of his own insecurities, inadequacies, defenses, and aggressions. He has soberly discovered that all men are not inherently good, just, and honest, nor does right always prevail. He’s disturbed because the old standards of conduct and control no longer seem adequate. He’s beginning to see that all of our meager remedial efforts have failed to stop the inexorable drift of society.
~ Ralph McGill
Acts 4:1-12 (ESV)
Peter and John Arrested
nd as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they arrested them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. But many of those who had heard the word believed, and the number of the men came to about five thousand.
On the next day their rulers and elders and scribes gathered together in Jerusalem, with Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. And when they had set them in the midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?”
Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Notes on the Scripture
Peter has been openly defying the Sanhedrin. Just months after Jesus was tried and executed for heresy, Peter has begun to preach Jesus’ message openly, in public, and right in Jerusalem itself—the heart of the Jewish religious establishment. He has converted 5,000 people. He is practically asking to be arrested and executed.
Annas and Caiphas
How far he has come since he denied Jesus three times after Jesus was arrested! Peter is exploding with courage. When Annas and Caiaphas (as well as other high priests) ask him how he has made the lame man whole, Peter gives it to them in spades. He summarizes the very speech he has been making in public to win converts—he goes so far as to accuse, by implication, the high priests of murdering a man sent by God.
And then, he tells them right to their faces that “there is salvation in no one else.” They, the high priests, have been superseded. Jesus, and his Holy Spirit operating through Peter, have replaced the very priests before whom he stands.
But the climate has changed. Now, Christians number 5,000 in a city that, by modern standards, is quite small. Most estimates run about 30,000 to 50,000 permanent residents. Their strategy of stopping the heresy by executing the leader has failed; this Jesus person has become a real thorn in the Sanhedrin’s side.