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Saturday, February 29, 2020

Daily Devotion for August 5, 2019


Michelangelo, The Creation, Sistine Chapel - God and Adam
The Creation, from Michelangelo’s great work, the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican.

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.




To Keep God in Mind This Day

Lord, let me begin this day in devout meditations, in joy unspeakable, and in blessing and praising You, who has given me such good hope and everlasting consolation.

Lift up my mind above all these little things below, which are apt to distract my thoughts; and keep it above, until my heart is fully resolved to seek You every day, in the path where Jesus has trod before me.

Amen.

Prayer to Cast Aside Bad Habits

King Midas|Walter Crane
King Midas

Mighty Holy Spirit, face of the one true God, help me, for I have slipped into bad habits. Something in me defies my attempts to change, and I feel compelled to do that which I do not want to do. I feel weak and ashamed, and I turn to you for help. Help me, dear God. Help me to resist this temptation. Lend me your mighty power to cast it aside.

You have graciously promised that you would not let us be tempted beyond our ability, but instead, would provide an escape for any temptation we pray to resist. Holy Spirit, show me my escape from my bad habit. Let me resolve to work on it, to pray on it, to turn it into a habit of good; for I know how you love righteous conduct, and my love for you longs to please you. Work your power to help me please you, mighty God; for I know that with your help, I can overcome any evil. In Christ’s name, I pray,

Amen.

Meditation

“The hand of our God is for good on all who seek him, and the power of his wrath is against all who forsake him.”


Dedication

Lord, in utter humility I thank you and glorify you, that you might hear the prayer of one so small as myself, amidst the billions of souls among billions of stars in one of billions of galaxies in your universe. Let me go forth in your peace, keeping your Spirit always in my mind; and bless me, I pray, that I might always follow your will and live in the radiance of your blessing.

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.



endless knot

Psalm 52:7-9 (NKJV)

“Here is the man who did not make God his strength,
But trusted in the abundance of his riches,
And strengthened himself in his evil desires.”

But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God;
I trust in the mercy of God forever and ever.

I will praise You forever,
Because You have done it;
And in the presence of Your saints
I will wait on Your name, for it is good.


Blue Latin Cross

Genesis 1:26-27 (ESV)

The Creation of Man

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

Notes on the Scripture

G illuminated, Belluno Gradual, St. Francis

od created us in his image, and after His likeness. Does this mean we look like God? Actually, we don’t know! Certainly God has appeared to men looking like something other than a human being: A burning bush, a flash of light, etc. But we also see God or his messenger (an angel) very like a human being in appearance. Jesus was God; however, Jesus was made man and “emptied himself of his divinity”, so it would be more accurate to say he was made to look like us—well, he was one of us—than vice versa. Most adults, however, visualize God in more abstract terms, perhaps as existing in the entirety of space.

But the words “in his image” might mean something other than arms, legs and a nose. We have the capacity, of all the creatures known to us, to distinguish between good and evil. We have the capacity to think; we are conscious of our existence. And we have the capacity to exercise free will. We can do something or believe something purely because we decided that it is the right thing to do, even if it is contrary to our animal instincts.

Most Christians believe that these attributes are the image of God. However, we must always remember that a likeness is not identical to the original. We are made in God’s image, but we are not God; if we look in a mirror, we see an image of our ourself, but it is not ourself.

Christian harmony

Still, we are special. Of all the gazillion things in the universe, only one of them (that we know of) was made in the image and likeness of God, and that is us. But there’s a catch: all the other people in the world, including the burglar stealing our money and the politician we cannot stand, are also made in God’s image. They are his beloved children and the likeness of God, and it is for that reason Christ told us that we may not judge one another.

One other observation on this passage. We are given the story of Adam and Eve first, telling us that God created the man and then, from his “rib”, created woman. Here, though, the Bible informs us that “male and female he created them” (in his image). For me, this is a safeguard against the toxic male arrogance that can creep into Biblical Christianity. Peter and Paul’s epistles differentiate between roles for men and women at several points, most notably concerning teaching in church and in marriage.

I take these teachings seriously; if we realize that the Bible is the Word of God, we must. But men must always have humility and an attitude of servanthood towards women, as towards one another, for the more fundamental truth is that all human beings are equal in the eyes of God.



<i>Adam and Eve,</i> by Lyuba Yatskiv, ca. 2005.
Adam and Eve, by Lyuba Yatskiv, ca. 2005.

Daily Inspiration

“Do Not Be Normal”

Current Memory Verse     Remember the Bible

Printable Format for Today’s Devotion





Today in Daily Prayer


The illuminated “G” in today’s Scripture Notes is a depiction of St. Francis receiving the stigmata, from the Belluno Gradual, a 1489 choir book from the city of Cremona, Italy. Have a look at this larger reproduction — it is one of the finest illuminated letters I have ever seen.

Memory Verse

Romans 12:2: Do not be conformed to this age . . . .



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Daily Quiz

Top score(s) on the Daily Quiz for Aug 05, 2019 were:
Gary Swart (12)
Norman Daniels (12)
Gary Merriman (12)
Willy Eriksson (12)
Tom Kraft (12)
Vavachan Joseph (11)
randall martin (11)

Top score(s) on Match-a-Verse:
Pam Carpenter (9 out of 9)
Vavachan Joseph (9 out of 9)
Kathryn Halfman (9 out of 9)
Greg Flippin (9 out of 9)
Gary Swart (9 out of 9)
Norman Daniels (9 out of 9)
Christy Ballard (9 out of 9)
randall martin (9 out of 9)

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