Daily Devotion for August 16, 2010
A detail from the ceiling of Saint Paul's Church (Sankt Paulin) in Trier, Germany
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.
"For Each New Morning"For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
I thank thee.
Prayer from Psalm 86Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications.
In the day of my trouble I will call upon you: for you will answer me.
Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; and no works like those you have done.
All nations whom you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; and will glorify your name.
For you are great, and do wondrous things: you are God alone.
Teach me your way, Lord, and I will walk in your truth: unite my heart to fear your name.
I will praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify your name forever.
Almighty God, by your Holy Spirit you have made me one with your saints in heaven and on earth. Grant that in my earthly pilgrimage I may always be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer, and know myself to be surrounded by their witness to your power and mercy. I ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns for ever and ever
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced,
The Lord's Prayer [Part 1] (King James Version)
And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father who is in secret; and thy Father who seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions as the heathen do, for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them, for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of before ye ask Him.
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 debts, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power and the glory for ever. Amen.
Notes on the Scripture
When you say the Lord's Prayer, stop sometimes and meditate on on a phrase. It will deepen your understanding and remind you of the power of the words. (We will quote several different versions of the Lord's Prayer over the next several days, from King James to contemporary.)
God is our "father". The analogy to a human father is enlightening in a number of ways. He created us; if he had not made us, we would not exist. Also, like our human father, we are made in His image, somewhat like getting our genes from our earthly father. But we also have "genes" from the earth, that is, an earthly form and mind that create desires and drives that may lead us to sin. Many people speak of "mother Earth" and the phrase fits the analogy. When the Bible says we are made in God's image, it does not mean we look like God the Father. It means we have a spirit, a soul, that allows us to transcend other animals, that leads us to do good and holy actions contrary to our earthly nature.
"Who art in heaven"
God the Father is an actual being, but He does not live in the same place we do. He abides in a place free from sin and death, a place of perfect joy. Our thoughts are limited by our human brains and we cannot truly know or understand heaven. We trust in God's repeated promise that perfect happiness awaits us and that to live with God in heaven will bring us a happiness we have not experienced on earth.
"Hallowed be thy name."
To the Jews, God's name was so holy that it was not spoken. Today, the Hebrew name is almost unknown except in the Biblical transliteration "Jehovah" or something similar. We usually refer to Him as "God". To hallow His name means to say it only in reverence. This is a sign that we remember God's holiness during the normal day, when our minds are occupied by worldly concerns. Thus, it is important to us to catch ourselves when we might use the words "God" or "Jesus" in a curse or epithet.
Even if you do use very rough language and find yourself saying something like "Jesus ----ing Christ!", if you pray this line and think about its meaning, you will think "maybe I shouldn't have said that", or remember to ask for forgiveness in your prayers.