Daily Devotion for May 3, 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.
This sweet Christian song was a surprising pop hit for Kris Kristofferson in 1973, and became the best-selling song of his career.
Prayer for the Morning
May all I do today begin with you, O Lord. Plant dreams and hopes within my soul and revive my tired spirit: be with me today. Be at my side and walk with me; be my support, that your hand may be seen in every action I take, that your goodness may be in every word I speak, and that your spirit may inhabit my every thought. Make my thoughts, my work, and my very life blessings for your kingdom. In Christ's name I pray,
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.
Now God himself and our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, I pray that you direct my way unto you, and make me and all of us to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you; to the end that we may establish our hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
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.
For the man who prays in his heart, the whole world is a church.
~ Sylvain of Athos
1 Peter 1:10-12 (ESV)
Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories.
It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.
Notes on the Scripture
If you can recall the end of yesterday's devotional, Peter is writing this epistle to the Christians who have been exiled from Rome (or ran in fear of their lives) and live in regions of modern-day Turkey. He is giving them a pep talk to bolster their faith, sorely tried by the times they had been through. At the end of yesterday's passage, he specifically addressed the difficulty of believing in a Christ who they had never seen and could not see.
Peter was not a deep theological writer, like Paul, and did not have Paul's gifts as an orator or letter writer. But he had a gift whose value was beyond compare, for by this time, he was one of the few living men who had been with Jesus through all of the events of His life, death, and resurrection. He could testify first-hand. His credibility was unmatched. It was if he were the last astronaut alive who had ever walked on the moon, if all of the movies and photographs had been destroyed.
Here, he testifies not only to Christ, but to the apostles and prophets who had lived with Christ and told of their accounts, and whose accounts were beginning to be written down. He assures them that these people were not nut cases or the type of people who would believe everything they might hear. They "searched and inquired carefully" into the promises of salvation and, even in their own prophecies, examined their beliefs and words thoroughly.
Now, the role of these people has been fulfilled. They did not receive salvation and the gift of prophecy simply for their own good. Rather, they were to serve others, both those living and those to come. By this time, most of the apostles were dead; probably only Peter and John were still alive, and they were old men. The first generation of Christ's followers was on the verge of leaving this life, and Peter wants to assure the churches in Turkey, and everyone to come, that the testimony given by these people was mature, measured, and correct. (John, also, who like Peter did not write much, would also pen several short epistles before his death.)
Page from an illuminated manuscript, Bath Abbey.