with a daily devotion
Morning Meditations for October 5
Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.—PSA. 50:15.
Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.—Lord, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear.—For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.
Jacob said unto his household, . . . Let us arise and go up to Bethel; and I will make there an altar unto God, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me in the way which I went.—Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.
I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live. The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow. Then called I on the name of the Lord.
“He arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights.”
All the strength supplied to us by our gracious God is meant for service, not for wantonness or boasting. When the prophet Elijah found the cake baked on the coals, and the cruse of water placed at his head, as he lay under the juniper tree, he was no gentleman to be gratified with dainty fare that he might stretch himself at his ease; far otherwise, he was commissioned to go forty days and forty nights in the strength of it, journeying towards Horeb, the mount of God. When the Master invited the disciples to “Come and dine” with him, after the feast was concluded he said to Peter, “Feed my sheep”; further adding, “Follow me.” Even thus it is with us; we eat the bread of heaven, that we may expend our strength in the Master’s service. We come to the passover, and eat of the paschal lamb with loins girt, and staff in hand, so as to start off at once when we have satisfied our hunger. Some Christians are for living on Christ, but are not so anxious to live for Christ. Earth should be a preparation for heaven; and heaven is the place where saints feast most and work most. They sit down at the table of our Lord, and they serve him day and night in his temple. They eat of heavenly food and render perfect service. Believer, in the strength you daily gain from Christ labour for him. Some of us have yet to learn much concerning the design of our Lord in giving us his grace. We are not to retain the precious grains of truth as the Egyptian mummy held the wheat for ages, without giving it an opportunity to grow: we must sow it and water it. Why does the Lord send down the rain upon the thirsty earth, and give the genial sunshine? Is it not that these may all help the fruits of the earth to yield food for man? Even so the Lord feeds and refreshes our souls that we may afterwards use our renewed strength in the promotion of his glory.
Jacob Sent to Laban
1Then Isaac called Jacob and blessed him and directed him, “You must not take a wife from the Canaanite women. 2Arise, go to Paddan-aram to the house of Bethuel your mother's father, and take as your wife from there one of the daughters of Laban your mother's brother. 3God Almighty11Hebrew El Shaddai bless you and make you fruitful and multiply you, that you may become a company of peoples. 4May he give the blessing of Abraham to you and to your offspring with you, that you may take possession of the land of your sojournings that God gave to Abraham!” 5Thus Isaac sent Jacob away. And he went to Paddan-aram, to Laban, the son of Bethuel the Aramean, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother.
Esau Marries an Ishmaelite
6Now Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him away to Paddan-aram to take a wife from there, and that as he blessed him he directed him, “You must not take a wife from the Canaanite women,” 7and that Jacob had obeyed his father and his mother and gone to Paddan-aram. 8So when Esau saw that the Canaanite women did not please Isaac his father, 9Esau went to Ishmael and took as his wife, besides the wives he had, Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael, Abraham's son, the sister of Nebaioth.
10Jacob left Beersheba and went toward Haran. 11And he came to a certain place and stayed there that night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place to sleep. 12And he dreamed, and behold, there was a ladder22Or a flight of steps set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven. And behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it! 13And behold, the Lord stood above it33Or beside him and said, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac. The land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring. 14Your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth, and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south, and in you and your offspring shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 15Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” 16Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” 17And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”
18So early in the morning Jacob took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. 19He called the name of that place Bethel,44Bethel means the house of God but the name of the city was Luz at the first. 20Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat and clothing to wear, 21so that I come again to my father's house in peace, then the Lord shall be my God, 22and this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, shall be God's house. And of all that you give me I will give a full tenth to you.”
29By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry land: which the Egyptians assaying to do were swallowed up. 30By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they had been compassed about for seven days. 31By faith Rahab the harlot perished not with them that were disobedient, having received the spies with peace. 32And what shall I more say? for the time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah; of David and Samuel and the prophets: 33who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, waxed mighty in war, turned to flight armies of aliens. 35Women received their dead by a resurrection: and others were tortured, not accepting their deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: 36and others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: 37they were stoned, they were sawn asunder, they were tempted, they were slain with the sword: they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated 38(of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves, and the holes of the earth. 39And these all, having had witness borne to them through their faith, received not the promise, 40God having provided some better thing concerning us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.
In the Day of Trouble I Seek the Lord
To the choirmaster: according to Jeduthun. A Psalm of Asaph.
1I cry aloud to God,
aloud to God, and he will hear me.
2In the day of my trouble I seek the Lord;
in the night my hand is stretched out without wearying;
my soul refuses to be comforted.
3When I remember God, I moan;
when I meditate, my spirit faints. Selah
4You hold my eyelids open;
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
5I consider the days of old,
the years long ago.
6I said,11Hebrew lacks I said “Let me remember my song in the night;
let me meditate in my heart.”
Then my spirit made a diligent search:
7“Will the Lord spurn forever,
and never again be favorable?
8Has his steadfast love forever ceased?
Are his promises at an end for all time?
9Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Has he in anger shut up his compassion?” Selah
11I will remember the deeds of the Lord;
yes, I will remember your wonders of old.
12I will ponder all your work,
and meditate on your mighty deeds.
13Your way, O God, is holy.
What god is great like our God?
14You are the God who works wonders;
you have made known your might among the peoples.
15You with your arm redeemed your people,
the children of Jacob and Joseph. Selah
16When the waters saw you, O God,
when the waters saw you, they were afraid;
indeed, the deep trembled.
17The clouds poured out water;
the skies gave forth thunder;
your arrows flashed on every side.
18The crash of your thunder was in the whirlwind;
your lightnings lighted up the world;
the earth trembled and shook.
19Your way was through the sea,
your path through the great waters;
yet your footprints were unseen.33Hebrew unknown
20You led your people like a flock
by the hand of Moses and Aaron.