Daily Devotion for January 12, 2020
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.
Our “Virtual Sunday Church” this week takes us to the Royal Albert Hall for a stirring rendition of a favorite Welsh Hymn.
pilgrim though this barren land;
I am weak, but thou art mighty;
hold me with thy powerful hand;
Bread of heaven,
feed me now and evermore.
Open now the crystal fountain,
whence the healing stream doth flow;
let the fiery cloudy pillar
lead me all my journey through;
be thou still my Strength and Shield.
When I tread the verge of Jordan,
bid my anxious fears subside;
bear me through the swelling current,
land me safe on Canaan's side;
songs of praises,
I will ever give to thee.
Music by John Hughes (1907)
Lyrics by William Williams (1771)
Call to Sunday Worship
O Lord, I beseech you mercifully to hear my prayers, and the prayers of all your people who call upon you; and grant that we may both perceive and know what things we ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfill them; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
O Changeless God,
Under the conviction of the Spirit I learn that
The more I do, the worse I am,
The more I know, the less I know,
The more holiness I have, the mores sinful I am,
The more I love, the more there is to love.
O wretched man that I am!
I have a wild heart
And cannot stand before thee;
I am like a bird before a man.
How little I love thy truth and ways!
I neglect prayer,
By thinking I have prayed enough and earnestly,
By knowing thou hast saved my soul.
Child’s drawing of a cross #4
Of all hypocrites, grant that I may not be an evangelical hypocrite,
Who sins more safely because grace abounds,
Who tells his lusts that Christ’s blood cleanseth them,
Who reasons that God cannot cast him into hell, for his is saved,
Who loves evangelical preaching, churches, Christians, but lives
My mind is a bucket without a bottom,
With no spiritual understanding,
No desire for the Lord’s Day,
Ever learning but never reaching the truth,
Always at the gospel-well but never holding water.
My conscience is without conviction or contrition,
With nothing to repent of.
My will is without power of decision or resolution.
My heart is without affection, and full of leaks.
My memory has no retention,
So I forget so easily the lessons learned,
And thy truths seep away.
Give me a broken heart that yet carries home the water of grace.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!
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 43 (ESV-UK)
Send Out Your Light and Your Truth
Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause
against an ungodly people,
from the deceitful and unjust man
For you are the God in whom I take refuge;
why have you rejected me?
Why do I go about mourning
because of the oppression of the enemy?
Send out your light and your truth;
let them lead me;
let them bring me to your holy hill
and to your dwelling!
Then I will go to the altar of God,
to God my exceeding joy,
and I will praise you with the lyre,
O God, my God.
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God.
Titus 2:11-14, 3:9-10 (ESV)
or the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.
* * *
[A]void foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, . . .
Notes on the Scripture
Overview of the New Testament: The Epistles
12. Paul's Epistle to Titus
Titus was another of Paul’s protégés, a Greek Christian. He must have been a dynamic and powerful young man, because Paul left him in charge of the church on Crete, a large and well-populated island, but one known for the laziness, stupidity and immorality of its people. Paul devotes several verses to denigrating the people of Crete and, from it, we get the word “cretin”, an insulting term meaning “stupid.”
As exceptional as Titus must have been, and as much faith as Paul put in his abilities, one doesn't get the feeling of personal warmth that is present in the letters to Timothy; for Timothy was like a son to Paul.
Other than the sentences insulting Cretans, the letter to Titus is an excellent epistle to read, for it is a short summary of Paul's primary points in 1 and 2 Timothy, as well as the important parts of several church epistles. Paul can be wordy and difficult to follow, for he would string massive sentences together with conjunctions and subordinate phrases. But in Titus, he makes his point and moves on. It isn't a well-known book because there is no teaching in it that isn't present (in greater detail) in his other epistles. But it is readable: “How Christians and Church Leaders Should Act in a Nutshell”.