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Daily Devotion for April 18, 2018


The First Passover, Arnold Friberg ca. 1953.
The First Passover, Arnold Friberg ca. 1953.

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.




Prayer for Guidance

Lord, teach me to number my days aright, that I may gain wisdom of heart. Help me do today the things that matter, not to waste the time I have.

The moments I have are precious, Lord, see that I count them dear. Teach me to number my days aright. Fill me this day with your kindness, that I may be glad and rejoice all the days of my life. Through Christ I pray,

Amen.

Prayer to Know the Living Christ

Lord Christ, time and again I have lost you in a bleak and desolate spiritual wasteland, believing my eyes: For I do not see you. Have you died? Is the tomb empty because your body has been stolen? I look for you and do not see you.

Yet, somehow, you find me. I knock and the door does not seem to open; but you are behind me all the time. I seek and do not think that I find; but I am found. I imagine you and force myself to believe that the image I create is you; yet you yourself are actually there, seeing me and calling me all the time.

I wander off like a lost sheep, my eyes front, and cannot find my way back; but a shepherd seeks me out and calls me, gently. Bless you, and bless you seven times seven, for you admit no failure in finding those who seek you, no matter how lost they may believe themselves. I pray that I may hear your voice, oh Lord, for I know you call, and my desperation is only my willful deafness

Amen.

Meditation

[I seek, but do not fully understand that I have found.]


Dedication

Let me not forget my prayers as I go out into the world. Holy Spirit, be with me, and let me praise you and remember you in my every action and thought, for the entire day long. In Christ’s name I ask this,

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

Humility of Mind

I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.

~ Psalm 131:1 (ESV)


Blue Latin Cross

John 2:6-12 (ESV)

The Wedding at Cana (2)
N

ow there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. And he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast.” So they took it.

When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.”

This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him.

After this he went down to Capernaum, with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there for a few days.


Notes on the Scripture

The incident occurs immediately after Jesus has told Nathanael that he would “see greater things” (John 1:50). Jesus is not performing a random miracle here. It is the first of the seven miraculous signs by which John attests Jesus’ divine status; he structures his Gospel around them.

Greek has several words that are translated into “miracle” in the Bible. The one used here means something like “sign” or “work,” while the word generally used in the synoptics is more like the English meaning of “miracle,” something more like an “act of power.”

bread of life, communion

The speech about saving the good wine for last is typical of John, because it has multiple layers of meaning. Christ is the “good wine” and is being served last. Moreover, like the wine, Christ was begotten by a miracle, an act of God. Water is generally associated with spirituality (as in baptism), and the transmutation of water into the best wine parallels the pregnancy of Mary, not by a man, but from the spirit.

In the surface sense, “good” wine might be taken to mean that it tastes better. But we see immediately that Christ’s wine is not simply better than whatever was served before. It is “good” in the sense that the previous wine was “worthless.” Mary did not say, “they have run out of wine.” Rather, she said, “They have no wine.” In a word, Israel had no salvation.

This metaphor is strengthened by the setting, because the water Jesus used was ceremonial; it was intended for Jewish purification rituals. The wine of Christ transforms the ineffective water of the Old Testament into an efficacious means of salvation, the wine of the Last Supper, which is itself a metaphor for Christ’s blood.

(If you are interested in more detailed study, you might try Comparison of Different Bible Translations for Accuracy — The Wedding at Cana.)



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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

Matthew 28:19: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.



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