with a daily devotion
Evening Meditations for April 2
When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?—LUKE 18:8.
He came unto his own, and his own received him not.—The Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith.
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth and shall be turned unto fables.
Of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.—Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching.—Looking for that blessed hope, … the glorious appearing of the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ,
“He shall see his seed; he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.”
Plead for the speedy fulfilment of this promise, all ye who love the Lord. It is easy work to pray when we are grounded and bottomed, as to our desires, upon God’s own promise. How can he that gave the word refuse to keep it? Immutable veracity cannot demean itself by a lie, and eternal faithfulness cannot degrade itself by neglect. God must bless his Son, his covenant binds him to it. That which the Spirit prompts us to ask for Jesus, is that which God decrees to give him. Whenever you are praying for the kingdom of Christ, let your eyes behold the dawning of the blessed day which draweth near, when the Crucified shall receive his coronation in the place where men rejected him. Courage, you that prayerfully work and toil for Christ with success of the very smallest kind, it shall not be so always; better times are before you. Your eyes cannot see the blissful future: borrow the telescope of faith; wipe the misty breath of your doubts from the glass; look through it and behold the coming glory. Reader, let us ask, do you make this your constant prayer? Remember that the same Christ who tells us to say, “Give us this day our daily bread,” had first given us this petition, “Hallowed be thy name; Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.” Let not your prayers be all concerning your own sins, your own wants, your own imperfections, your own trials, but let them climb the starry ladder, and get up to Christ himself, and then, as you draw nigh to the blood-sprinkled mercy-seat, offer this prayer continually, “Lord, extend the kingdom of thy dear Son.” Such a petition, fervently presented, will elevate the spirit of all your devotions. Mind that you prove the sincerity of your prayer by labouring to promote the Lord’s glory.
A Lament for the Princes of Israel
1And you, take up a lamentation for the princes of Israel, 2and say:
What was your mother? A lioness!
Among lions she crouched;
in the midst of young lions
she reared her cubs.
3And she brought up one of her cubs;
he became a young lion,
and he learned to catch prey;
he devoured men.
4The nations heard about him;
he was caught in their pit,
and they brought him with hooks
to the land of Egypt.
5When she saw that she waited in vain,
that her hope was lost,
she took another of her cubs
and made him a young lion.
6He prowled among the lions;
he became a young lion,
and he learned to catch prey;
he devoured men,
7and seized11Hebrew knew their widows.
He laid waste their cities,
and the land was appalled and all who were in it
at the sound of his roaring.
8Then the nations set against him
from provinces on every side;
they spread their net over him;
he was taken in their pit.
9With hooks they put him in a cage22Or in a wooden collar
and brought him to the king of Babylon;
they brought him into custody,
that his voice should no more be heard
on the mountains of Israel.
10Your mother was like a vine in a vineyard33Some Hebrew manuscripts; most Hebrew manuscripts in your blood
planted by the water,
fruitful and full of branches
by reason of abundant water.
11Its strong stems became
it towered aloft
among the thick boughs;44Or the clouds
it was seen in its height
with the mass of its branches.
12But the vine was plucked up in fury,
cast down to the ground;
the east wind dried up its fruit;
they were stripped off and withered.
As for its strong stem,
fire consumed it.
13Now it is planted in the wilderness,
in a dry and thirsty land.
14And fire has gone out from the stem of its shoots,
has consumed its fruit,
so that there remains in it no strong stem,
no scepter for ruling.
This is a lamentation and has become a lamentation.
67And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying,
68Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
For he hath visited and wrought redemption for his people,
69And hath raised up a horn of salvation for us
In the house of his servant David
70(As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets that have been from of old),
71Salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us;
72To show mercy towards, our fathers,
And to remember his holy covenant;
73The oath which he spake unto Abraham our father,
74To grant unto us that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies
Should serve him without fear,
75In holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
76Yea and thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Most High:
For thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to make ready his ways;
77To give knowledge of salvation unto his people
In the remission of their sins,
78Because of the tender mercy of our God,
Whereby the dayspring from on high shall visit us,
79To shine upon them that sit in darkness and the shadow of death;
To guide our feet into the way of peace.
80And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his showing unto Israel.
Who Can Stand Before You?
To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments. A Psalm of Asaph. A Song.
1In Judah God is known;
his name is great in Israel.
2His abode has been established in Salem,
his dwelling place in Zion.
3There he broke the flashing arrows,
the shield, the sword, and the weapons of war. Selah
4Glorious are you, more majestic
than the mountains of prey.
5The stouthearted were stripped of their spoil;
they sank into sleep;
all the men of war
were unable to use their hands.
6At your rebuke, O God of Jacob,
both rider and horse lay stunned.
7But you, you are to be feared!
Who can stand before you
when once your anger is roused?
8From the heavens you uttered judgment;
the earth feared and was still,
9when God arose to establish judgment,
to save all the humble of the earth. Selah
10Surely the wrath of man shall praise you;
the remnant11Or extremity of wrath you will put on like a belt.
11Make your vows to the Lord your God and perform them;
let all around him bring gifts
to him who is to be feared,
12who cuts off the spirit of princes,
who is to be feared by the kings of the earth.