kneeling fisherman

kneeling fisherman

Thursday, April 9, 2015

The Empty Tomb

Invitatory: I am the living one; I died, and behold I am alive for evermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades. Revelation 1.18

Prayer for the Week: “Almighty God, by the death of your Son you have destroyed sin and death, and by his resurrection you have restored innocence and everlasting life, in order that, delivered from the power of the devil, we may live in your kingdom.  Grant that we may believe this with our whole heart, and, steadfast in this faith, may praise and thank you evermore; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.” (Martin Luther, Klugsches Gesangbuch, 1553; text in Allgemeines Evangelisches Gebetbuch, 1955, p.430)

Bible reading for the day:  I John 1.3-10
…that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.
5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

prayer(based on the TRIP** method): Gracious and almighty Father, thank you that you are light and in you there is no darkness and no deceit at all.  We have a subtle, destructive way of slinking back to the darkness Lord, even in broad daylight.  Please change that about us.  Put to death the old sinner in us that ignores and lives outside your word.  Bring us daily to confess our sin that we may receive forgiveness from you and walk in the light and have true fellowship with one another. I ask this in Jesus’ name, amen.

Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us…”
What does this mean?
We pray in this petition that our heavenly Father would not hold our sins against us and deny our prayers because of them. We know we have not earned, nor do we deserve, those things for which we pray. But we ask that he would grant us all things through grace, even though we sin every day and deserve nothing but punishment. And so we, too, will heartily forgive, and gladly do good to those who sin against us. (from The Small Catechism, by Martin Luther, ©Reclaim Resources, Sola Publishing, 2011)

Hymn: follow this link to a beloved, classic hymn based on today’s reading:

benediction:    May the God of peace himself grow you in his will entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.  Amen.  I Thess 5.23

*There are many patterns for devotions.  This pattern has been followed by God’s people for centuries.

**The T.R.I.P. approach to prayer is based on the way Martin Luther prayed and taught others to pray.  It was later developed by Walter and Ingrid Trobisch and then adapted by Mount Carmel Ministries (Alexandria, MN  The method is founded on scripture and easy to remember:
T: thanksgiving
                                                          R: regret (repentance)
                                                          I: intercession (asking God to take a specific action)
                                                          P: plan or purpose

Reading a biblical text and then applying this method gives one a sound, simple way to form one’s prayers...not to mention that it helps one learn how to faithfully reflect on God’s Word and talk to God.  

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