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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 May 3, 2018


<i>The Creation of Eve</i>, 12th-century mosaic from the Cathedral of Monreale, Siciliy.
The Creation of Eve, 12th-century mosaic from the Cathedral of Monreale, Siciliy.

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.

See today’s Daily Inspiration for the story of this hymn.




To Remember God During the Day

Lord God, the heavens are telling of your glory and the wonders of your love, the sun by day, and the moon and stars by night. Yet, as clouds will cover your sky in gloom, as the ceilings of men's buildings hide the sky from my sight, so the cares of this existence block your majesty from my mind.

I look with hope to the day when my knowledge of your glory will never be hidden by the concerns of the world, and I may know you every moment of time, forever; but until then, forgive me for all the time I spend with my face bent to the things of earth, your Spirit ignored and forgotten; for you are always there, willing to show yourself to me and guide me and comfort me, if I only lift up my head and see the sky above.

Amen.

Prayer to Put My Trust in Christ

Oh Holy Christ, Son of God and King of all humanity, I bring to you my hurts, my fears, my disappointments; I am filled with worries about my health, about money, about my place in the world, and about the health and safety of my loved ones. The struggles, the cruelties, and the tribulations of this life sometimes seem unfair and overwhelming. I cannot handle them alone, my Lord; I lay them at your feet.

You have promised to shoulder our burdens, Lord Jesus, and I am taking you up on your promise. I give myself to you, with all my emotional baggage. Teach me to lean upon you, to trust you, to know that in your ultimate victory, all of my fears will prove illusory, and my pains, short-lived.

Do not leave me to suffer alone, Lord; do not turn your face away. Forgive me my every sin and take me to your bosom, for I am your child and I know you love me. This I pray in your name, whose every word is truth,

Amen.

Parting Prayer

Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip me with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in me what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.

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 book follows Elijah in the Old Testament?

Answer: Trick question! There is no Book of Elijah. His story is found in 1 & 2 Kings and 1 & 2 Chronicles.



endless knot

2 Corinthians 2:17 (ESV)

For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God’s word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.


Blue Latin Cross

2 Samuel 3:6-21 (NLT)

Abner Goes Over to David

As the war between the house of Saul and the house of David went on, Abner became a powerful leader among those loyal to Saul. One day Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, accused Abner of sleeping with one of his father’s concubines, a woman named Rizpah, daughter of Aiah.

Abner was furious. “Am I some Judean dog to be kicked around like this?” he shouted. “After all I have done for your father, Saul, and his family and friends by not handing you over to David, is this my reward—that you find fault with me about this woman? May God strike me and even kill me if I don’t do everything I can to help David get what the Lord has promised him! I’m going to take Saul’s kingdom and give it to David. I will establish the throne of David over Israel as well as Judah, all the way from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south.” Ishbosheth didn’t dare say another word because he was afraid of what Abner might do.

Michal wife of David
Michal

Then Abner sent messengers to David, saying, “Doesn’t the entire land belong to you? Make a solemn pact with me, and I will help turn over all of Israel to you.”

“All right,” David replied, “but I will not negotiate with you unless you bring back my wife Michal, Saul’s daughter, when you come.”

David then sent this message to Ishbosheth, Saul’s son: “Give me back my wife Michal, for I bought her with the lives of 100 Philistines.”

So Ishbosheth took Michal away from her husband, Palti son of Laish. Palti followed along behind her as far as Bahurim, weeping as he went. Then Abner told him, “Go back home!” So Palti returned.

Meanwhile, Abner had consulted with the elders of Israel. “For some time now,” he told them, “you have wanted to make David your king. Now is the time! For the Lord has said, ‘I have chosen David to save my people Israel from the hands of the Philistines and from all their other enemies.’” Abner also spoke with the men of Benjamin. Then he went to Hebron to tell David that all the people of Israel and Benjamin had agreed to support him.

When Abner and twenty of his men came to Hebron, David entertained them with a great feast. Then Abner said to David, “Let me go and call an assembly of all Israel to support my lord the king. They will make a covenant with you to make you their king, and you will rule over everything your heart desires.” So David sent Abner safely on his way.


Notes on the Scripture

I

t is touching that David’s only demand is that Michal be brought to him. Michal was Saul’s younger daughter. Saul had promised her to David (after he had rejected the elder daughter) for the rather gross price of 100 Philistine foreskins, hoping that David would die in battle. But he did not—David killed not 100, but 200, Philistines and claimed Michal. She was certainly in love with David—she helped him escape when Saul first tried to kill him—and it appears David loved her as well.

Abner must have been a fierce warrior and highly respected captain. Although Ish-Bosheth insults him, it doesn’t seem sufficient motive for such a radical change in loyalty. One can only infer that Abner was disenchanted with Ish-Bosheth and had come to realize that David would make a much stronger king; perhaps, also, he was influenced by Samuel’s old prophecy, that the Lord had anointed David to rule over all Israel. At any rate, the insult would seem to be as much of an excuse to change loyalties as a reason.



Digital portrait, the very image of purity, by Oleg Duryagin, contemporary.
Digital portrait, the very image of purity, by Oleg Duryagin, contemporary.

Daily Inspiration

“The Big Fake”

Current Memory Verse     Remember the Bible

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Today in Daily Prayer

Memory Verse

Deuteronomy 10:17-19 (ESV) : The Lord your God . . . loves the strangers, providing them food and clothing. You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.



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