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May the peace of God reign in this place
and the love of God forever hold you tight,
May the Spirit of God flow through your life
and the joy of God uphold you day and night.


Daily Devotion for August 20, 2015


Egyptian gods, Thoth, Book of the Dead
From the Egyptian Book of the Dead. Jackal-headed Anubis weighs souls in a balance, while Thoth, the ibis-headed scribe of the gods, keeps a record.

Prayers

Scripture

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Lord's Prayer

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.

Amen.




Morning Prayer of George Washington

Almighty God, and most merciful father, who commanded the children of Israel to offer a daily sacrifice to thee, that thereby they might glorify and praise thee for thy protection both night and day; receive, O Lord, my morning sacrifice which I now offer up to thee. I yield thee humble and hearty thanks that thou has preserved me from the danger of the night past, and brought me to the light of the day, and the comforts thereof, a day which is consecrated to thine own service and for thine own honor.

Let my heart, therefore, Gracious God, be so affected with the glory and majesty of it, that I may not do my own works, but wait on thee, and discharge those weighty duties thou require of me.

And since thou art a God of pure eyes, and will be sanctified in all who draw near to thee, who does not regard the sacrifice of fools, nor hear sinners who tread in thy courts: Pardon, I beseech thee, my sins, remove them from thy presence, as far as the east is from the west, and accept of me for the merits of thy son Jesus Christ, that when I come into thy temple, and compass thine altar, my prayers may come before thee as incense.

And as thou would hear me calling upon thee in my prayers, so give me grace to hear thee calling on me in thy word, that it may be wisdom, righteousness, reconciliation and peace to the saving of the soul in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Grant that I may hear it with reverence, receive it with meekness, mingle it with faith, and that it may accomplish in me, Gracious God, the good work for which thou have sent it.

Bless my family, kindred, friends and country, be our God & guide this day and for ever for his sake, who lay down in the Grave and arose again for us, Jesus Christ our Lord,

Amen.

To Love Others

Holy Lord, give me the grace to embody love for others in spite of what they say or do, and to express the sacrificial love of Jesus by treating others in the way Jesus treated me. My confidence is in You, and I will steadfastly hold fast to You rather than wringing my hands over the evils in this generation.

Amen.

Meditation

[What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity?]


Blessing

The Lord bless us and keep us. The Lord make his face to shine upon us, and be gracious unto us. The Lord lift up his countenance upon us, and give us peace, this day and evermore.

Amen.

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.



endless knot

Exodus 1:15-22 (ESV)

Pharaoh Oppresses Israel [2]

Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.” But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live.

So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?” The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.”

So God dealt well with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families.

Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, “Every son that is born to the Hebrews you shall cast into the Nile, but you shall let every daughter live.”



Notes on the Scripture

The Pharaoh's fear has really gotten out of hand. Like Herod the Great to follow, he demands general infanticide. His treatment of the Hebrews, a people so welcomed by the old Pharaoh, has become the greatest cruelty possible; for to kill the baby boys means the eventual extermination of the Hebrew race.

Egyptian god Anubis
Anubis

Pharaoh's most basic error is that he does not fear God. The Egyptians were, at this time, developing possibly the most elaborate and devout polytheistic religion ever seen on earth. It was idolatry to the nth degree. At least 65 gods and goddesses have been identified, who were sufficiently important to rate statues. Eventually the later Pharaohs would be considered gods (or demigods) themselves, allowed to marry only others of their family. Cleopatra, famously, was slated to marry her brother when Julius Caesar and Marc Anthony intervened.

The midwives were themselves Hebrew, which is not completely clear in the text; and there is a Jewish flavor to the way they solve their dilemma, splitting the issue and finding a crack between defying the Pharaoh and no doubt being killed, on the one hand, and becoming the instruments of genocide, on the other.

But Pharaoh is not so easily foiled. He takes killing of the baby Hebrew boys out of the hands of the Jewish midwives. Now, anyone who knows of a male Jewish infant is ordered to throw him in the great river. It is an order Pharaoh will live to regret.

One cannot help but note a bit of historical irony here. In @1400 B.C. the Pharaoh of Egypt ordered that the Jews be destroyed by drowning them in the water. In 1967 A.D., almost 3500 years later, the Abdel Nasser, the President of Egypt, orders Israel be destroyed by “pushing them into the sea.” Both were spectacularly unsuccessful. Plus ça changeA French expression: The more things change (the more they stay the same).!



devotional dove as Holy Spirit

Daily Inspiration

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Today in Daily Prayer

Memory Verse

2 Corinthians 7:1: Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.



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