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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 September 22, 2023


Crucifixion of St. Peter, by Caravaggio
The Crucifixion of St. Peter (detail), by Caravaggio, 1601. (See Full-size.)

Prayers

Scripture

296 people in our community are currently praying with you.

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.

We have a rare instrumental for “Classical Friday,” but this is great Bach! One of his most tuneful and popular organ works, the Little Fugue in G Minor, performed by Ton Koopman in an unidentified German Baroque church.




For a New Day

Lord, the newness of this day
Calls me to an untried way;
Let me gladly take the road,
Give me strength to bear my load.
Thou my guide and helper be —
I will travel through with Thee.

Amen.

Prayer to the King

ancient Icon of Jesus +

Lord Christ, you are my King and I have no other. I will follow the laws of men, where I can do so without offending Your holy ordinances and teachings, for your Bible has taught us to obey the civil authorities. I will pay my taxes and I will render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, but they do not have my heart and they do not have my soul. For my King does not sit in a palace of stone; my King does not wear robes trimmed with fur. My King does not make promises he cannot keep. My King cannot be corrupted, will never shame me, will never make excuses. My King will never cover-up his wrongdoing, because my King commits no wrong, hates no man, and would give up His very life for me.

For my King is Jesus Christ the Almighty God of Heaven and Earth, clothed in righteousness, crowned by truth and seated on a throne of eternal glory! And to You and You alone I swear my allegiance, my faith, my hope, my life and my soul, today and as long as I live,

Amen.

Meditation

“We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against cosmic powers, the spiritual forces of evil. ”

~Ephesians 6:12


Benediction

And now, as a little child, let me abide in you all this day, oh Christ, so that when you appear I may have confidence and not shrink from you in shame at your coming. For I know that you are righteous, and I am sure that I will be made righteous only by my life in you.

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

Psalm 67 (NKJV)

God be merciful to us and bless us,
And cause His face to shine upon us, Selah
That Your way may be known on earth,
Your salvation among all nations.

Let the peoples praise You, O God;
Let all the peoples praise You.
Oh, let the nations be glad and sing for joy!
For You shall judge the people righteously,
And govern the nations on earth. Selah

Let the peoples praise You, O God;
Let all the peoples praise You.
Then the earth shall yield her increase;
God, our own God, shall bless us.
God shall bless us,
And all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.


Blue Latin Cross

John 21:15-19 (ESV)

The Redemption of Peter
W

hen they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.”

He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.”

He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.” (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.)

And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.”


Notes on the Scripture

After Christ’s arrest, Peter denied Him three times “before the cock crowed,” out of fear for his life. Jesus had predicted these events.

Today’s passage reminds us of those denials, because the resurrected Christ has Peter declare his love three times. Peter is thus fully rehabilitated. He is the disciple who will found the church.

Christ does all of this, apparently, to prepare Peter for the sacrifice which he will be called upon to make. Like Jesus, Peter will suffer for spreading the true word of God, specifically the word as revealed by Christ. Notice that Christ describes the sacrifice which Peter will have to make before commanding him, “Follow me.” Peter is thus made fully aware of the suffering he will endure, as the cost of his faithfulness.

Church tradition, and several non-Biblical books, state that Peter was crucified in Rome, but there is no account of his death in the Bible itself. Most accounts state that he was hung upside down at his own request, as he did not consider himself worthy to be crucified in the same manner as Christ.



<i>Saint Peter and Saint Paul</i> by El Greco, ca. 1597.
Saint Peter and Saint Paul by El Greco, ca. 1597.

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Memory Verse

Ephesians 2:8: For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.



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