Daily Devotion for November 22, 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.
Prayer for the Morning
Heavenly Lord, you have brought me to the beginning of a new day. As the world is renewed fresh and clean, so I ask you to renew my heart with your strength and purpose. Forgive me the errors of yesterday and bless me to walk closer in your way today. This is the day I begin my life anew; shine through me so that every person I meet may feel your presence in my soul. Take my hand, precious Lord, for I cannot make it by myself. Through Christ I pray and live,
Prayer for the Nation
Almighty God, who has given us this good land for our heritage; I humbly pray that we may always prove ourselves a people who remember your favor and are glad to do your will. Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion; from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way.
Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes brought here from so many different lands and languages. Grant the spirit of wisdom those to whom we entrust with the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that, through obedience to your law, we may demonstrate your praise among the nations of the earth. In times of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and days of trouble, do not let our trust in you fail; all which I ask through Jesus Christ our Lord.
May the Passion of Christ be ever in my heart. May your law and your goodness guide my every thought, O Lord. And may the power of your Holy Spirit flow through my words and my actions.
Walk with me, so that I may not be alone as I face this day, but always in your presence. Your joy is a lighthouse in a world often dark with sin, and I pray that I may inspire others as I have been inspired. In the name of Christ, bless me this day, and all who I may meet.
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.
But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you.
Samson Part 6 — Samson is Bound and Delivered to the Philistines
Then the Philistines came up and encamped in Judah and made a raid on Lehi. And the men of Judah said, "Why have you come up against us?" The Philistines told them, "We have come up to bind Samson, to do to him as he did to us."
So 3,000 men of Judah went down to the cave in the rock of Etam, and said to Samson, "Do you not know that the Philistines are rulers over us? Why have you done this to us?"
And he said to them, "As they did to me, so have I done to them."
And they said to him, "We have come down to bind you, that we may give you into the hands of the Philistines." And Samson said to them, "Swear to me that you will not attack me yourselves." They replied, "No; we will only bind you and give you into their hands. We will surely not kill you."
So they bound him with two new ropes and brought him up from the rock.
Notes on the Scripture
Like so many armies occupying a conquered land, the Philistines hold the entire populace responsible for one individual's violence against them. Samson slaughtered a great number of Philistines and burned their crops; so the Philistines send out an army to raid the Jews. They seek vengeance for their dead, and restitution for the food they have lost.
The Hebrews hold Samson accountable. Why should they pay for his violence? They have been cowed into submission. They do not yet realize that Samson is acting as the hand of God, to get back what they have lost by their idolatry and weakness. But they do, apparently, realize the extent of Samson's ability as a fighting man. Instead of a little arrest party, 3,000 men go to capture him.
Samson goes along willingly. In return for their promise not to kill him by their own hand, he submits to being tied up and delivered to the Philistine army.