Monday, May 18, 2020

The Daily Lectionary for MONDAY, May 18, 2020

The Daily Lectionary
MONDAY, May 18, 2020
Psalm 93; Genesis 9:8-17; Acts 27:39-44
(Revised Common Lectionary Year A)

Psalm 93
God reigns above the floods
1  The Lord reigns, he is robed in majesty;
     the Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength;
     indeed, the world is established, firm and secure.
2  Your throne was established long ago;
     you are from all eternity.

3  The seas have lifted up, Lord,
     the seas have lifted up their voice;
     the seas have lifted up their pounding waves.
4  Mightier than the thunder of the great waters,
     mightier than the breakers of the sea—
     the Lord on high is mighty.

5  Your statutes, Lord, stand firm;
     holiness adorns your house
     for endless days.

Genesis 9:8-17
Sign of the covenant
9:8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: 9 “I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you 10 and with every living creature that was with you—the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you—every living creature on earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”

12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.”

17 So God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth.”

Acts 27:39-44
Paul and companions come safely to land
27:39 When daylight came, they did not recognize the land, but they saw a bay with a sandy beach, where they decided to run the ship aground if they could. 40 Cutting loose the anchors, they left them in the sea and at the same time untied the ropes that held the rudders. Then they hoisted the foresail to the wind and made for the beach. 41 But the ship struck a sandbar and ran aground. The bow stuck fast and would not move, and the stern was broken to pieces by the pounding of the surf.

42 The soldiers planned to kill the prisoners to prevent any of them from swimming away and escaping. 43 But the centurion wanted to spare Paul’s life and kept them from carrying out their plan. He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and get to land. 44 The rest were to get there on planks or on other pieces of the ship. In this way everyone reached land safely.

Optional parts of the readings are set off in [square brackets.]

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle, and Gospel lessons are from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

The Daily Lectionary is a three-year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year A. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2020, we will be in Year B. The year which ended at Advent 2019 was Year C. These readings complement the Sunday and festival readings: Thursday through Saturday readings help prepare the reader for the Sunday ahead; Monday through Wednesday readings help the reader reflect and digest what they heard in worship. Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts.
The Daily Lectionary for MONDAY, May 18, 2020
Psalm 93; Genesis 9:8-17; Acts 27:39-44

The Daily Prayer for MONDAY, May 18, 2020
The Daily Prayer
MONDAY, May 18, 2020

Origen of Alexandria (c. 185 — c. 254)

The oldest of seven children, Origen was born in Alexandria, and witnessed at a very young age the public death of his father, who was martyred during the persecutions in 202. While still in his teens, Origen became a teacher, philosopher, and student of Scripture—and a prolific writer, all the while practicing a strict discipline of prayer, fasting, celibacy, and poverty. Though his self-denial was extreme to the point of abuse and some of his teachings were ultimately considered heresy, Origen is still considered one of the greatest early interpreters of Scripture and Christian doctrine. By helping Christians find meaning in the riches of Scripture, he taught a love for truth, sanctity, and God above all else.

Origen of Alexandria wrote, “I do not call the Law an ‘Old Testament’ if I understand it in the Spirit. The Law becomes an ‘Old Testament’ only for those who wish to understand it carnally, but for those who understand it and apply it in the Spirit and in the Gospel sense, the Law is ever new and the two Testaments are a new Testament for us, not because of their date in time but because of the newness of the meaning. For those who do not respect the covenant of love, even the Gospels are ‘old.’”

Help us, Lord, to see in your Scripture the good news that never grows old. Amen.

Verse of the Day for MONDAY, May 18, 2020

Hebrews 6:10
God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.
Read all of Hebrews 6

Listen to Hebrews 6

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Un dia a la Vez - Lunes 18 de mayo de 2020

Dios no nos abandona jamás

Estas cosas os he hablado para que en mí tengáis paz. En el mundo tendréis aflicción; pero confiad, yo he vencido al mundo.
Al igual que nuestra oyente de ayer, muchos quizá se sintieran identificados con su caso. Han cometido grandes errores que, al final, afecta su vida y la de sus hijitos.

Tal vez parezca repetitivo, pero Dios es y será el único que no te abandonará jamás. Así hayas quedado sola con tus hijos y tu esposo te haya abandonado, no temas porque Dios promete acompañarte.

Comprendo que esta etapa de la vida es muy dolorosa. Lo sé de mi primera mano, pues la viví también. Incluso, se llega a pensar que nunca saldremos adelante.

Como una mujer de Dios, mi consejo es que no te quedes estancada en esa etapa. Echa para delante y piensa por primera vez en ti.

Entrégale tus preocupaciones a Dios.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Tal vez parezca repetitivo, pero Dios es y será el único que no te abandonará jamás.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Monday, May 18, 2020

“No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”

Riches are dangerous because their seductive power often causes people to reject Christ and His kingdom. The rich young ruler who turned sadly away after being told that he had to part with his riches to inherit salvation prompted Jesus’ statement, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.” (Luke 18:24; Mark 10:23; Matthew 19:23)

A desire for riches can cause people to do almost anything—even to the extent of selling their souls. The result, Scripture warns, is anguish now and damnation later (1 Timothy 6:9-10). An abundance of possessions can easily lead us to forget that God is the Source of all good. The people of Israel were warned of this before they entered the Promised Land (Deuteronomy 8:11-17).

The pursuit of wealth often results in wars. James 4:1-2 says this clearly and it is amply confirmed from world history. Instead of fostering more compassion toward the poor, riches often harden the hearts of the wealthy. Rich persons are often unconcerned about the poor at their doorstep. (Luke 16:19-31; Isaiah 5:8-10; Amos 6:4-7; James 5:1-5)

Money is not neutral; it is a power with a life of its own. It is a power that is even demonic in character. When Jesus uses the Aramaic term mammon, translated as money in the NIV, (Matthew 6:24) to refer to wealth, He is giving it a personal and spiritual character as a rival god. Mammon is a power that seeks to dominate us.

Hence, money is an active agent. It is a law unto itself—capable of inspiring devotion. It is tremendously instructive to stand back and observe the frantic scramble of people for money. And this does not occur just among the poor and starving. Even the super-rich still seek it furiously. The middle class continues to buy more houses, acquire more cars and purchase more clothes than they need. If money were only a medium of exchange, it would make no sense at all to attach such prestige to it. We value people in relation to their income. We give people status and honor in relation to how much money they have or appear to have.

We can have all the Christian externals and yet be complete materialists in our hearts.

RESPONSE: I choose to serve God, so I will not give money any place of prominence in my life or in my heart.

PRAYER: Lord, I need Your help today to stay focused on You and not on all the “things” around me.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

Women of the Bible - Monday, May 18, 2020

The Woman of Endor

Her character: Compassionate to Saul on the eve of his death, she exercised power by acting as a medium.
Her sorrow: To have delivered a hopeless message to Israel's king.
Key Scriptures: 1 Samuel 28:3-25

Her Story

It was a night for frightening apparitions. Squinting through the open doorway, the woman stiffened, retreating a step. A face loomed before her, floating on its own like a full white moon in the outer darkness. Before she could close the door, she felt fingers gripping her wrist.

"Please," the voice insisted, "consult a spirit for me, and bring up for me the one I name."

The large man pushed through the door, followed by two more men. She could smell his fear as he swept past her and sat down on the couch.

"Surely you know what Saul has done. He has cut off the mediums and spiritists from the land. Why have you set a trap for my life to bring about my death?" she replied.

"As surely as the Lord lives, you will not be punished for this," he swore.

"Whom shall I bring up for you?"

"Bring up Samuel," he said.

So the woman sat down and yielded herself, making her soul a bridge for the dead to walk across.

Suddenly she screamed, "Why have you deceived me? You are Saul!"

The king calmed her, saying, "Don't be afraid. What do you see?"

"An old man wearing a robe is coming up," she said.

Saul bowed down and prostrated himself, his face in the dirt.

Samuel said to Saul, "Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?"

"I am in great distress," Saul replied. "The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has turned away from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets or by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do."

Samuel said, "Why do you consult me, now that the Lord has turned away from you and become your enemy? The Lord has done what he predicted through me. The Lord has torn the kingdom out of your hands and given it to one of your neighbors—to David. Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me. The Lord will also hand over the army of Israel to the Philistines."

The woman shuddered, the message delivered. Little wonder the king had seemed so desolate. Fear had crushed the life out of his once-strong face, hollowing the eyes, etching deep lines across cheeks and forehead.

Taking pity, she spoke to him: "Look, your maidservant has obeyed you. I took my life in my hands and did what you told me to do. Now please listen to your servant and let me give you some food so you may eat and have the strength to go on your way."

Kindly, she served what may have been Saul's last meal. The next day he was dead. Wounded in battle, he fell on his own sword, determined to finish the job before his enemies could reach him. True to form, Saul, who had always tried to control his destiny, controlled even the manner of his death. But he could not control what happened next. Discovering his body, the Philistines celebrated by severing his head and hanging it in the temple of their god. Then they tacked his naked corpse to the walls of a nearby town as a trophy. Israel's first king had become a gruesome spectacle.

The woman of Endor is a strange character, steeped in the occult yet kind and motherly in her attitude toward the tormented king. For some reason, God allowed her to call up the prophet Samuel even though necromancy (conjuring spirits for the purpose of knowing or influencing future events) was strictly forbidden in Israel.

Perhaps she had become a medium because women in those days had so little power. Or perhaps it seemed an outlet for her helpful nature. But by yielding her soul to spirits, she was abusing herself in the deepest possible way, distorting her dignity as a person for the sake of obtaining power. How fitting that Saul, who had always tried to control the future, spent his last moments consulting her, breaking his own law in the process. Step-by-step, his insecurities had taken control of him, reducing his soul and disabling his ability to depend on God rather than on himself.

That night the woman of Endor had looked into the eyes of the most powerful man in Israel and had seen the terror there. Did the vision shake her? Did she recognize herself in him? Did her encounter with a true prophet cause her to forsake her trade as a medium? We have no idea what became of her. Sadly, her meeting with Saul marks one of the lowest moments in the life of Israel's first king, revealing his disintegration as a man whose future was destroyed by disobedience.

Saul's tragic ending reminds us that the antidote to fear is always trust. Only faith can cure our worst nightmares, and faith is a gift that is either fed by obedience or starved by disobedience. Forsaking our own desire to manipulate and control people and circumstances, we must trust God to use his power on our behalf.

Her Promise

In a backhanded sort of way, the woman of Endor reveals for us our need to trust God. As human beings, many of us are like Saul, afraid of the future, estranged from our loved ones and God, willing to go anywhere for help. But God is our only true source of help and comfort. He has promised to guide and direct us and plan our steps. He doesn't promise to reveal the future to us, but he does promise to go with us as we step into it.

This devotional is drawn from Women of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Women in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Jean Syswerda. Used with permission.
It was a night for frightening apparitions. Squinting through the open doorway, the woman stiffened, retreating a step. A face loomed before her, floating on its own like a full white moon in the outer darkness. Before she could close the door, she felt fingers gripping her wrist.

LHM Daily Devotions - May 18, 2020 - "Come, Lord Jesus"

Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Come, Lord Jesus"

May 18, 2020

God shall arise, His enemies shall be scattered; and those who hate Him shall flee before Him! As smoke is driven away, so you shall drive them away; as wax melts before fire, so the wicked shall perish before God! But the righteous shall be glad; they shall exult before God; they shall be jubilant with joy!

Organizations that monitor the worldwide persecution of Jesus' followers have noted that currently more than 260 million Christians in 50 countries are suffering under high-to-severe levels of persecution. Every year, thousands of believers die at the hands of their persecutors, while many more suffer imprisonment or the loss of churches, homes, and employment. These terrifying numbers are not unexpected. Jesus said His followers would be hated as He was hated (see John 15:18). And even though Jesus said we are blessed when we suffer on account of His Name, for centuries saints throughout the world have cried out with the psalmist, "How long, O LORD?" (Psalm 13:1a). Yet such circumstances will not continue forever. The day is coming when "God shall arise" and "His enemies shall be scattered."

We know that day will certainly come because already there was a time when God arose in power and majesty, scattering His enemies. In those days, His mighty power was veiled in human flesh and hidden in weakness and suffering. Jesus our Savior, true God and true Man, was rejected and betrayed by those He came to save. He was unjustly condemned to death. But in the weakness and suffering of His death on the cross, Jesus destroyed the devil's power and delivered us from the fear of death (see Hebrews 2:14-15). On the third day after His death, the Son of God arose bodily from the grave, triumphing over death, scattering His enemies—our enemies—sin, death, and Satan.

Soon after Jesus ascended, the persecution against His followers began. The world, with hatred that Jesus had foretold, began its assault on His body, the church, an assault that continues to this day. Yet even through suffering and death, the Lord of the church holds His people securely in His hand. The church continues to grow as Christians everywhere continue their witness to Jesus, praying that the Spirit would call even their persecutors to faith in the Savior. As Jesus said of His church, "The gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18b). But then finally, one day, all persecution will cease.

On the Last Day, when Jesus returns in glory as Judge and King, this psalm will be fully and finally fulfilled. God will arise and His enemies will scatter—with nowhere to run. Those who hated the Savior and rejected Him as Lord will flee before Him. Death, the last enemy, will be destroyed as all the saints, once so hated by the world, will rise bodily from their graves, dressed in immortality (see 1 Corinthians 15:26, 53). According to God's righteous judgment, the wicked will perish. On that day, as the psalmist says, we will be glad and exult before God. We will be jubilant with joy! Come, Lord Jesus!

THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, Good Shepherd, You have promised that no one will snatch Your sheep from Your hand. With Your Word and with Your body and blood, nourish and sustain Your suffering church until You return. Amen. Come quickly, Lord! Amen.

Reflection Questions:
1. Are there types of persecution people experience that are subtle and unseen by others?

2. How does God scatter His enemies? Can you give an example?

3. Have you encountered persecution in your life? How did you handle it?
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Carol Geisler. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Are there types of persecution people experience that are subtle and unseen by others?

Devocional CPTLN del 18 de mayo de 2020 - Ven, Señor Jesús


Ven, Señor Jesús

18 de Mayo de 2020

¡Levántese Dios, y sean esparcidos sus enemigos! ¡Huyan de su presencia quienes lo aborrecen! Dios los despejará como si despejara el humo; ¡como si derritiera cera delante del fuego! Así perecen los impíos delante de Dios. Pero los justos se alegrarán delante de Dios; ¡llenos de gozo, saltarán de alegría!

Las organizaciones que monitorean la persecución mundial de los seguidores de Jesús dicen que, en la actualidad, más de 260 millones de cristianos en 50 países sufren niveles de persecución altos a severos. Cada año miles de creyentes mueren a manos de sus perseguidores, mientras que muchos más sufren encarcelamiento o la pérdida de iglesias, hogares y empleos. Sin embargo, estas cifras terribles no son inesperadas. Jesús dijo que sus seguidores serían odiados así como lo odiaban a él (ver Juan 15:18). Y a pesar de que Jesús dijo que somos bendecidos cuando sufrimos a causa de su Nombre, durante siglos los santos de todo el mundo han gritado con el salmista: "¿Hasta cuándo, Señor?" (Salmo 13:1a). Sin embargo, tales circunstancias no continuarán para siempre. Se acerca el día en que 'Dios se levantará' y 'sus enemigos serán esparcidos'.

Sabemos que ese día ciertamente llegará porque ya hubo un tiempo en que Dios se levantó en poder y majestad, dispersando a sus enemigos. En esos días, su majestuoso poder estaba velado en carne humana y escondido en debilidad y sufrimiento. Jesús nuestro Salvador, verdadero Dios y verdadero hombre, fue rechazado y traicionado por aquellos a quienes vino a salvar y fue injustamente condenado a muerte. Pero en la debilidad y sufrimiento de su muerte en la cruz, Jesús destruyó el poder del diablo y nos libró del temor a la muerte (ver Hebreos 2:14-15). Al tercer día el Hijo de Dios se levantó corporalmente de la tumba triunfando sobre la muerte, dispersando a sus enemigos, nuestros enemigos: el pecado, la muerte y Satanás.

Poco después de que Jesús ascendió, comenzó la persecución contra sus seguidores. El mundo, con el odio que Jesús había predicho, comenzó su asalto a su cuerpo, la iglesia, un asalto que continúa hasta nuestros días. Sin embargo, incluso a través del sufrimiento y la muerte, el Señor de la iglesia sostiene seguro a su pueblo en sus manos. La iglesia continúa creciendo a medida que los cristianos en todas partes continúan dando testimonio de Jesús, orando para que el Espíritu llame incluso a sus perseguidores a la fe en el Salvador. Como Jesús dijo de su iglesia: "Las puertas del Hades no podrán vencerla" (Mateo 16:18b). Pero finalmente, un día, toda persecución cesará.

En el último día, cuando Jesús regrese en gloria como Juez y Rey, este salmo se cumplirá total y finalmente. Dios se levantará y sus enemigos se dispersarán sin ningún lugar a donde correr. Aquellos que odiaron al Salvador y lo rechazaron como Señor huirán delante de Él. La muerte, el último enemigo, será destruido ya que todos los santos, una vez tan odiados por el mundo, se levantarán corporalmente de sus tumbas, vestidos de inmortalidad (ver 1 Corintios 15:26, 53). Según el justo juicio de Dios, los impíos perecerán. En ese día, como dice el salmista, nos alegraremos y exultaremos ante Dios. ¡Estaremos jubilosos de alegría! ¡Ven Señor Jesús!

ORACIÓN: Señor Jesús, buen pastor, has prometido que nadie te arrebatará tus ovejas de tu mano. Con tu palabra y con tu cuerpo y sangre, nutre y sostiene tu iglesia sufriente hasta que regreses. Amén. ¡Ven rápido, Señor!

Dra. Carol Geisler

Para reflexionar:
* ¿Cómo dispersa Dios a sus enemigos? ¿Puedes dar un ejemplo?

* ¿Has sufrido persecución en tu vida? ¿Cómo la manejaste?
© Copyright 2020 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
¿Cómo dispersa Dios a sus enemigos? ¿Puedes dar un ejemplo?

Notre Pain Quotidien - Le don de la paix

Le don de la paix

Lisez : Luc 2.25-35
La Bible en un an : 1 Chroniques 7 – 9 ; Jean 6.22-44

Maintenant, Seigneur, tu laisses ton serviteur s’en aller en paix, selon ta parole. Car mes yeux ont vu ton salut.
« Je crois en Jésus et il est mon Sauveur, et je n’ai pas peur de la mort », a dit Barbara Bush, l’épouse de l’ancien président George H. W. Bush, à son fils avant de décéder. Cette incroyable affirmation empreinte d’assurance atteste une foi forte et profonde. Même devant la mort, elle a joui du don de la paix de Dieu qui vient du fait de connaître Jésus.

Siméon, un résident de Jérusalem au 1er siècle, a lui aussi vécu une paix profonde grâce à Jésus. Mû par le Saint-Esprit, Siméon s’est rendu au Temple lorsque Marie et Joseph y ont amené le bébé Jésus pour le faire circoncire comme la loi l’exigeait. Bien que l’on ne connaisse pas grand-chose sur Siméon, la description que Luc en fait laisse entendre que c’était un homme de Dieu spécial, juste et pieux, qui attendait avec fidélité le Messie à venir et que « l’Esprit saint était sur lui » (LU 2.25). Siméon n’a toutefois pas vécu la shalom (paix), un profond sentiment de complétude, avant d’avoir vu Jésus.

Avec Jésus dans les bras, Siméon s’est mis à louer Dieu : « Maintenant, Seigneur, tu laisses ton serviteur s’en aller en paix, selon ta parole. Car mes yeux ont vu ton salut, salut que tu as préparé devant tous les peuples » (V. 29-31). Cette paix lui venait d’avoir vu l’espoir futur du monde entier.

Tandis que nous célébrons la vie, la mort et la résurrection de Jésus, le Sauveur promis, puissions-nous nous réjouir dans le don de la paix de Dieu.
Précieux Père, merci pour Jésus, ton don de la paix personnifiée.
Si nous connaissons Jésus de manière personnelle, il nous accorde sa paix.

© 2020 Ministères NPQ
Cette incroyable affirmation empreinte d’assurance atteste une foi forte et profonde.