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.
O Lord, who has mercy upon all, take away from me my sins, and mercifully kindle in me the fire of your Holy Spirit. Take away from me the heart of stone, and give me a heart of flesh, a heart to love and adore you, a heart to delight in you, to follow and to enjoy you, for Christ’s sake.
O Merciful God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Resurrection and the Life; whoever lives and believes in Him, will not die eternally, but have everlasting life. You have taught us, by the holy Apostle Paul, not to be sorry, as men without hope, for those who sleep in him.
I humbly beseech you, O Father, to raise me and all who confess your holy name, from the death of sin unto the life of righteousness; that, when we depart this life, we may rest in Him; and that, at the general Resurrection in the last day, we may be found acceptable in your sight. I pray that you will give us that blessing, which your well-beloved Son will then pronounce to all who love and fear you, saying, Come, you blessed children of my Father, receive the kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the world. Grant this, I beseech you, O merciful Father, through Jesus Christ, our Mediator and Redeemer.
Heavenly Father, make me an instrument of your grace. Weave my life together with the lives of all who confess the name of your Son, Jesus, into a holy garment to cover the world; let us be as bricks in a great lighthouse to guide the entire world to you, to your love and your forgiveness. Help us to overcome differences that come from our sinful nature, so that we may be welded together in a holy priesthood, standing as a testimony to purity, goodness, and forgiveness. Bless me and those who pray with me now, that although we cannot see or hear one another, we may be bonded in your Holy Spirit.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!
The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken,
and called the earth
from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.
Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty,
God hath shined.
Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence:
a fire shall devour before him,
and it shall be very tempestuous round about him.
He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth,
that he may judge his people.
Gather my saints together unto me;
those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.
And the heavens shall declare his righteousness:
for God is judge himself. Selah.
. . . [E]very beast of the forest is mine,
and the cattle upon a thousand hills.
I know all the fowls of the mountains:
and the wild beasts of the field are mine.
If I were hungry, I would not tell thee:
for the world is mine, and the fulness thereof.
Will I eat the flesh of bulls,
or drink the blood of goats?
Offer unto God thanksgiving;
and pay thy vows unto the most High:
And call upon me in the day of trouble:
I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.
think it right, as long as I am in this body, to refresh your memory, since I know that my death will come soon, as indeed our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.
For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we had been eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received honor and glory from God the Father when that voice was conveyed to him by the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, my Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” We ourselves heard this voice come from heaven, while we were with him on the holy mountain.
So we have the prophetic message more fully confirmed. You will do well to be attentive to this as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. First of all you must understand this, that no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one‘s own interpretation, because no prophecy ever came by human will, but men and women moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.
Interpretation of the Bible is sometimes excruciatingly difficult. First, times do change and some customs must affect the meaning of Scripture. Even the most ardent fundamentalist does not consider it obligatory to wear sandals and few if any go from door to door, asking that the inhabitants give them a room for the night.
Secondly, we do not always know the exact meanings of the original words; most of Christ‘s words have been translated several times, and even the ancient Greek or Hebrew translation is sometimes a bit obscure.
But most important, humans are fallible. We cannot see the unvarnished truth. It is not a capability God has given to us. Everything we think, everything we know, is colored by our own emotions and personality and culture.
So what do we make of Peter‘s instruction that “no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one‘s own interpretation”? Well, we must try. We must read the Bible and try to set aside our own preconceptions of right and wrong. Almost everyone seeks to read the Bible to find support for their beliefs, at least to some degree; it is human nature. But it is the worst kind of sinful pride to do it. The Bible must be read with an absolutely open mind, the mind of one who seeks truth rather than the mind of one who thinks he knows the truth and seeks an authority so that he can convince others of his correctness.