kneeling fisherman

kneeling fisherman

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Go away Jesus

Verse for the week: “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.”  Zech 4.6

Prayer for the week: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the almighty God, send your Holy Spirit into our hearts through your blessed word, that he may rule and guide us according to your will; strengthen us in every trial and need; and lead us, past all error, into your truth; that we may stand fast in faith, increase in love and all good works, and by the sure hope of your grace, which you have obtained for us by your death, be saved eternally; for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit forever and ever.  Amen.  (Viet Dietrich in Otto Dietz, Die Evangelien-Kooekten des Viet Dietrich, p. 57)

Bible reading for the day:  John 15.26-27; 16.4b-15
“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me. 27 And you also will bear witness, because you have been with me from the beginning.
5 “I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

Prayer (based on TRIP** method): Gracious Lord Jesus, thank you for going away… and for sending us the Helper, your Holy Spirit. Repent me and my congregation of not trusting his work and of trying to control it. Convict us all the way… that we may be led into the truth that you take sinners like us and by your declaration alone, make us righteous. In Jesus’ name, alleluia and amen.

Hymn: follow this link to a beloved classic hymn which gives further voice to today’s conversation with the Lord:

“I believe in the Holy Spirit…”
What does this mean?
I believe that I cannot by my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ my Lord or come to him; but the Holy Spirit has called me through the Gospel, enlightened me with his gifts, and sanctified and preserved me in the true faith. In the same way, he calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth, and preserves it in unity with Jesus Christ in the one true faith. In this Christian church, he daily forgives abundantly all my sins and the sins of all believers. At the last day, he will raise me and all the dead and will grant everlasting life to me and to all who believe in Christ. This is most certainly true.  (from The Small Catechism, by Martin Luther, ©Reclaim Resources, Sola Publishing, 2011)

Benediction: Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and through grace gave us eternal comfort and good hope, comfort your hearts and strengthen them in every good work and word.  Amen.  II Thess 2.16-17

*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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