Daily Devotion for March 6, 2012
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.
"For Each New Morning"For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
I thank thee.
Prayer of Praise (from Psalm 86)
Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications. In the day of my trouble I will call upon you: for you will answer me.
Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; and no works like those you have done. All nations whom you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; and will glorify your name.
For you are great, and do wondrous things: you are God alone.
Teach me your way, Lord, and I will walk in your truth: unite my heart to fear your name. I will praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify your name forever.
As I travel through the rest of my day, may the God of hope fill me with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit I may abound in hope.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
The highest of the kings of the earth.
My mercy I will keep for him forever,
And My covenant shall stand firm with him.
His seed also I will make to endure forever,
And his throne as the days of heaven.
Genesis 23:17-20 (ESV)
The Story of Abraham  - Ephron the Hittite
So the field of Ephron in Machpelah, which was to the east of Mamre, the field with the cave that was in it and all the trees that were in the field, throughout its whole area, was made over to Abraham as a possession in the presence of the Hittites, before all who went in at the gate of his city.
After this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah east of Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. The field and the cave that is in it were made over to Abraham as property for a burying place by the Hittites.
Notes on the Scripture
Genesis 23 recounts the founding of the oldest Jewish community in the world, at Hebron. Despite his extensive travel, Abraham's later years are spent in a fairly small area, a dry but fertile area in the mountains and valleys west of the Dead Sea. If you draw a line southwest from Jerusalem, Beersheba — the edge of habitable land before you reach the Negev Desert — is only 48 miles away, and Hebron lies halfway in-between.
The Oak(s) of Mamre, where he stopped several times before, was a mile or so to the north of Hebron. He stops there early in his travels and returns to it several times, so perhaps it is accurate to call this area his home base, where he returns to die.
In the New Testament, we don't encounter much of this area, because, although Christ was born in Bethlehem just to the south of Jerusalem, his life and ministry were centered far north of Jerusalem, primarily in Galilee.
Today the region lies mostly in the "West Bank" area and has a predominantly Arab population; we must remember that Abraham is almost as holy to the Muslims as to the Jews. Nevertheless, Jews have lived at Hebron since the day Abraham bought a field and a cave from Ephron the Hittite, to bury his wife.