Daily Devotion for September 24, 2010
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.
The path rugged and steep?
Are there briars and thorns on the way?
Do sharp stones cut your feet
As you struggle to rise
To the heights thru the heat of the day?
2. Is your heart faint and sad,
Your soul weary within,
As you toil ’neath your burden of care?
Does the load heavy seem
You are forced now to lift?
Is there no one your burden to share?
3. Let your heart be not faint
Now the journey’s begun;
There is One who still beckons to you.
So look upward in joy
And take hold of his hand;
He will lead you to heights that are new —
4. A land holy and pure,
Where all trouble doth end,
And your life shall be free from all sin,
Where no tears shall be shed,
For no sorrows remain.
Take his hand and with him enter in.
Music by George D. Pyper
Lyrics by Joseph Fielding Smith
Prayer for Faith
Give us, Lord, a lively faith, a firm hope, a fervent charity, a love of you. Take from us all lukewarmness in meditation, dullness in prayer. Give us fervor and delight in thinking of you and your grace, your tender compassion towards us. The things we pray for, good Lord, give us grace to labor for: through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Lord, because you have made me, I owe you the whole of my love; because you have redeemed me, I owe you the whole of myself; because you have promised so much, I owe you my whole being.
I pray you, Lord, make me taste by love what I taste by knowledge; let me know by love what I know by understanding. I owe you more than my whole self, but I have no more, and by myself I cannot render the whole of it to you. Draw me to you, Lord, in the fullness of your love. I am wholly yours by creation; make me all yours, too, in love.
For Lost Souls
Heavenly Lord Jesus, I pray to you, help all the people on earth who are oblivious to you and your saving grace. I see and hear — I am bombarded with — words and actions that spring from the total darkness of those who do not know you. They blaspheme your name, they scorn your Word, they mock those who confess you.
I know your will be done in all things, mighty God, and it seems that there are those you will abandon to evil; yet even so, it is my prayer that you save them all, or save as many as you might be persuaded to; or even, that you save a single one by my prayer. I pray that you might have mercy upon the wretched atheists, the misguided who worship a God without Christ, and all the many who are simply confused and adrift. Save them Lord Christ; this I pray to you and in your name,
Now may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the eternal high priest himself, the Son of God Jesus Christ, build up myself, and all Christians, in faith and truth, and in all gentleness and in all freedom from anger and forbearance and steadfastness and patient endurance and purity.
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.
Today’s “Remember the Bible” Question
What Bible verse tells us that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever?
Psalm 38:1,4 (NKJV)
O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your wrath,
Nor chasten me in Your hot displeasure!
For my iniquities have gone over my head;
Like a heavy burden they are too heavy for me.
Romans 4:18-25 (ESV)
The Promise Realized Through Faith [Part 2]
In hope he [Abraham] believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah‘s womb. No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.
That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.
Notes on the Scripture
aul here continues to discuss the faith of Abraham, as part of his overall argument that we are saved by faith, not by our perfect adherence to the law of Moses. For Abraham was the first Jew, the man with whom God made the old covenant of circumcision. Paul explains that it was Abraham‘s faith, not the act of circumcision, that delivered him into righteousness.
Today he compares the faith of Abraham with the faith of Christians. God promised to make Abraham the father of many nations. But Abraham and his wife, Sarah, were old. Paul say Abraham was “as good as dead” and Sarah had been barren even in her youth. How were they to father a child, much less “many nations”? It‘s laughable.
But Abraham‘s faith was powerful. He never wavered in his belief that God could and would do what he had promised. And this faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” And Abraham and Sarah gave birth to Isaac, from whom all Jews are descended.
Those who are told that God raised Jesus from the dead, to save us from sin and death, are put in the same position as Abraham. Our experience in the world tells us that it is impossible to raise someone who has been dead for three days, or for a barren, elderly couple to have a child. But we believe in what we cannot see. We have faith that God keeps his promises and tells the truth. And it is this faith that is “counted to us” as righteousness, just as it was for Abraham.