Daily Devotion for September 23, 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
Blessed are you, O Lord my God, King of the universe, who removes sleep from my eyes and slumber from my eyelids. I thank you for all that you have done while I was asleep, watching over me and all your children while we slept unaware, and I pray that my thoughts and acts this day may show forth my love and thanks for you and all you have done for me.
Help me through your Holy Spirit, that I may remember what you have taught me in the Bible and it may show forth in my every deed. Let me not wander into the hands of sin, nor into the hands of pride or perversity, not into the hands of temptation, nor into the hands of shame, but steer my inclinations towards goodness and charity this morning and all the day. In the name of Christ I pray.
A Prayer of Repentance
O Lord our God, good and merciful, I acknowledge all my sins which I have committed every day of my life, in thought, word and deed; in body and soul alike. I am heartily sorry that I have ever offended you, and I sincerely repent; with tears I humbly pray to you, O Lord: of your mercy forgive me all my past transgressions and absolve me from them. I firmly resolve, with the help of your grace, to amend my way of life and to sin no more; that I may walk in the way of the righteous and offer praise and glory to the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
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.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
Is better than the riches of many wicked.
For the arms of the wicked shall be broken,
But the Lord upholds the righteous.
1 Corinthians 2:6-10, 13-16
Among the mature we do speak wisdom, though it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to perish. But we speak God's wisdom, secret and hidden, which God decreed before the ages for our glory.
None of the rulers of this age understood this; for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But, as it is written, "What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him" -- these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God.
And we speak of these things in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual things to those who are spiritual.
Those who are unspiritual do not receive the gifts of God's Spirit, for they are foolishness to them, and they are unable to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. Those who are spiritual discern all things, and they are themselves subject to no one else's scrutiny. "For who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ.
Notes on the Scripture
Throughout the ages, many people have tried to prove that God exists. And just as many have tried to prove that He does not exist. Countless agnostics have tried to figure it out, letting myriad arguments pro and con fight it out in their minds.
But the existence of God, much less the presence of the Holy Spirit and the grace of Jesus Christ, cannot be proven or disproven with logic. What cannot be seen, cannot be discovered by the eye. Neither can what is spiritual be discovered by the mind. God can only be found in the heart and in the soul, for knowledge of Him is a spiritual gift.
When you find God, you are "subject to no one else's scrutiny". People who try to convince you that God does not exist are fools. They do not realize that logic and argument are fruitless; for, because God reveals himself to us only through the spirit, we cannot know Him or find him through debate.
We have recently read through the entire book of Acts, where Paul converts countless people, Jew and Gentile alike, through his words. But if you read closely, you will notice that his basic argument is not an appeal to logic.
Instead, Paul testifies. He tells of events; he tells of his own experience; he tells of the testimony and prophecy of others throughout the ages. He relates the words of Christ and the prophets.
The wisdom of God, just as in Paul's time when today's Scripture was written, "is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age." We cannot expect that the world will suddenly receive this wisdom. We can only share it, the best we are able, and let our spirit be seen through our actions.