Daily Devotion for January 27, 2011
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Prayer for the Morning
Dear Lord, I give you my hands to do your work; I give you my feet to go your way; I give you my eyes to see as you see; I give you my tongue to speak your words; I give you my mind that you may think in me; I give you my spirit that you may pray in me. Above all, I give you my heart that you may love in me - love the Father and love all humankind. I give you my whole self, Lord, that you may grow in me, so that it is you who lives, works and prays in me.
Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make me perfect in every good work to do his will, working in me that which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
The Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him, In those who hope in His mercy.
Jesus Knows What is in Man
Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing.
But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.
Notes on the Scripture
Here again we see John using the word "signs" to refer to the acts, miraculous or otherwise, that Jesus had begun to perform. People who see or hear about the signs begin to believe in him and actually, "believe in his name". Believing in his name indicates a deeper kind of belief. We can believe in someone simply because we trust their nature or their abilities, but to believe in someone's name? That is a religious matter; it indicates that they consider Jesus to be holy so that the knowledge and use of his very name has power.
It is not simply Jesus' teachings that are important; it is his person. He teaches about God, but he also embodies God. He will bring good news to mankind, and teach many people -- all who can hear him, who have not shut out the Word. But again, it is his person that is most important, because the physical suffering and resurrection of his body is what will come to define him most vividly.The words "did not entrust himself to them" is a bit difficult. Literally, he did not put himself in their hands because he knew what was in their hearts; he didn't trust them because he already knew them. But man also refers to Christ himself. He did not need witnesses because he already knew what was within him.
Also, we might conclude that he didn't want to start a religious movement in Jerusalem, with a group of people who would start spreading his word, because they weren't the people he wanted as the foundation of his church. He would entrust his teaching mission, and the spread of his story after his death, to only twelve carefully chosen apostles, not whoever in Jerusalem decided that Jesus was their new rabbi. He knew that his apostles would remain faithful to his teachings; but he knew that, if he allowed the people who had come to him in Jerusalem to spread his word, they would corrupt it, because he could see into their hearts.