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Daily Devotion for February 12, 2011
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
Oh God the King eternal, who divides the day from the darkness, and has turned the shadow of death into the light of morning; I pray that this day you will incline my heart to keep your commandments, driving temptation from my mind. Guide my feet into the way of peace; that having done your will with cheerfulness while it was day, I may, when the night comes, rejoice in giving you thanks for a day lived in your presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
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.
Eternal God, heavenly Father, you have graciously accepted me as a living member of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ, and you have blessed me with the grace of forgiveness through the sacrifice He made for me and for all people. Send me now into the world in peace, and grant me strength and courage to love and serve you with gladness and singleness of heart; through Christ our Lord.
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 whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.
Honor the Father and the Son
For this reason the Jews persecuted Jesus, and sought to kill Him, because He had done these things on the Sabbath. But Jesus answered them, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.”
Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God.
Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner. For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel.
For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will. For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.
Notes on the Scripture
The first paragraph refers to Jesus healing the man at the pool in Jerusalem and telling him to "take up your bed and walk" on the Sabbath. Thereafter, they learn that Jesus claims that God is his father, an act of heresy. It is not unusual, in historical terms, that such an open and notorious act of heresy would draw the death penalty.
The passage is theologically important, because of the last paragraphs. Notice that Christ draws a clear line between his responsibilities and those of God the Father. The Father is primarily responsible for the miracles Christ has performed. It is a bit hazy (and not really terribly important) whether Christ works these miracles in the name of the Father, or whether as the Son of God he has the authority to perform them, although some incomprehensible combination of the two would fit the Gospel of John the best.
The important point is that Christ is the face of God to which all judgment has been committed. He is " God the Judge". And like any judge, he has the power of mercy. God of the old testament often showed mercy, of course, but it seems unpredictable. Christ, on the other hand, has promised mercy to all who believe in Him. Thus, Christ must become the judge of humanity, because it is the only way that mercy can be guaranteed.