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Daily Devotion for July 1, 2017


<i>Noah and the Rainbow</i> by Marc Chagall, ca. 1963.
Noah and the Rainbow by Marc Chagall, ca. 1963.

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.

Remembering the time when Christian songs might become pop hits!




Prayer to Do God’s Will

Oh Lord God, Father Almighty who created me and everything I see and enjoy, blessed and beautiful Jesus, love of my heart, bounteous Holy Spirit of God who is so kind as to be with me and comfort me whenever I ask, I thank you for all that I am and all that I have had in my life. Thy will be done, my God. I ask only that you let me know your will for me, for I am often confused or conflicted, and I seek your guidance. Knowing your will for me, let me be anxious for nothing. And I pray for the strength, the power and the energy, to accomplish your purpose. All glory be to you, one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, who was before time and will be forever,

Amen.

For Those Who Pray

Be merciful, O Lord, to those who have entrusted me, an unworthy sinner, to pray for them. Be merciful, O Lord, to all who ask Thy help. Make this day a day of Thy mercy; give to each according to their petition. Be the Shepherd of the lost, the Guide of Light of unbelievers, the Teacher of the unwise, the Father of orphans, the Helper of the oppressed, the Healer of the sick, the Comforter of the dying, and lead us all to the desired end -- to Thee, our refuge and blessed repose.

Amen.

Blessing of Mark

O  Sovereign and almighty Lord, bless all your people, and all your flock. Give your peace, your help, and your love unto us your servants, the sheep of your fold, that we may be united in the bond of peace and love, one body and one spirit, in one hope of our calling, in your divine and boundless love.

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.


Today’s “Remember the Bible” Question

What is a verse that tells us to be accepting of Christians who believe something different from us?

Answer: Mark 9:40
“He who is not against us is for us. For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.”



endless knot

Happiness

When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.

      ~Helen Keller


Blue Latin Cross

1 Peter 3:18-22 (ESV)

Water

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, in which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through water.

Baptism simple graphic

Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.


Notes on the Scripture

We studied the first sentence yesterday. This long (it’s the entire first paragraph) and tangled sentence is hard to follow, but it creates a necessary context for today’s passage.

Peter compares unbelievers — the “spirits in prison” — to the unrighteous before the flood, and Noah and his family to those saved by Christ. Noah was brought to safety “through water.”

The water for Noah was, of course, the physical manifestation of God’s vengeance against the wicked. In the second paragraph, Peter turns this on its head, as water becomes the physical sign of God’s grace in baptism. It isn’t a complete turnaround in how water is used as a symbol, however; in both cases, it is water which divides those who are saved from those who are condemned.

R

emember, from the first two books of 1 Peter, how much emphasis Peter puts on God choosing and calling those who will be saved. Water, in both the Noah story and the life of Christ, is used to separate the righteous. So although we usually think of water as a means of destruction and death in the Noah story, to Peter, the water is a blessing for Noah, in the sense that it identifies him as one who has been called and saved.

Peter then reminds us of a third property of water. We wash with it. Water cleans the physical dirt from our body, just as the water of baptism symbolizes cleaning the sin from our soul.

But Peter wants us to look at baptism a different way. Here he implies that the water of baptism is the water of the flood. It symbolizes our faith that Christ, like the ark that God told Noah to build, will save us from God’s wrath. Water, the enemy of the wicked and the instrument of their destruction, becomes the friend of the righteous.



Devotional painting of Noah’s ark, animals, by Edward Hicks c. 1846
Noah's Ark by Edward Hicks, c. 1846.


Daily Inspiration

“The Greek Answer
to the Meaning of Life”

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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

Matthew 5:40 (NASB): If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also.



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