My family and I have had morning devotions, or family altar as some people call it, every day ever since my wife, Meriqua, and I were married 30 years ago. We have prayed and read the Bible together as well as other devotional books as a family, and it is the only reason why this family has stayed together, and the only reason why God has blessed our family and used our family in ministry all of these years. We read Ephesians 5 and 6 every morning as it relates to the role of each member of the family and how that we need to put on the whole armor of God to fight against the devil who is seeking to destroy our family and all Christian families, churches, and Christians. So, now after 30 years of doing this in our home, we are opening this up to others who don’t have a family to pray with, who don’t have a spouse, or who are single by choice, and to encourage all families who are still intact to go back to the family altar and have devotions together every morning. In these devotions, you may hear me deal with a temptation I’m facing in my life, you may hear me rebuke my wife about not doing what she should be doing, or you may hear me get on one of my children’s cases about something they’re doing. Don’t be shocked; this is real life.
Praise God from Whom all blessings flow
Praise Him, all creatures here below
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost
William Perkins said, “Those families wherein this service of God, family worship, is performed, are (as it were) little churches, yea, even a kind of Paradise upon earth.”
RECITE: THE NICENE CREED
We believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
begotten from the Father before all ages,
God from God,
Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made;
of the same essence as the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven;
he became incarnate by the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary,
and was made human.
He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered, died, and was buried.
The third day he rose again, according to the Scriptures.
He was seen alive by Mary Magdalene and the other women, the disciples and over 500 other brethren;
He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again with glory
to judge the living and the dead.
His kingdom will never end.
And we believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life.
He proceeds from the Father and the Son,
and with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified.
He spoke through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic [universal] and apostolic church.
We affirm one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look forward to the resurrection of the dead,
and to life in the world to come. Amen.
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
David Guzik writes in his Enduring Word Commentary on the Bible, “In the command for husbands to love their wives, Paul used the ancient Greek word agape. The ancient Greeks had four different words we translate love. It is important to understand the difference between the words, and why the apostle Paul chose the Greek word agape here. Eros was one word for love. It described, as we might guess from the word itself, erotic love. It refers to love driven by desire. Storge was the second word for love. It refers to family love, the kind of love there is between a parent and child or between family members in general. It is love driven by blood. Philia is the third word for love. It speaks of a brotherly friendship and affection. It is the love of deep friendship and partnership. It might be described as the highest love of which man, without God’s help, is capable of. It is fondness, or love driven by common interests and affection. Agape is the fourth word for love. Eros, storge, and philia each speak about love that is felt. These describe ‘instinctive’ love, love that comes spontaneously from the heart. Paul assumes that eros (desire) and phileo (fondness) are present. Christians should not act as if these things do not matter in the marriage relationship. They do matter. But Paul’s real point is to address a higher kind of love, agape love. Agape is a love more of decision than of the spontaneous heart. It is as much a matter of the mind as the heart, because it chooses to love the undeserving.”
DEVOTIONAL PASSAGE: Psalm 108:7-13
7 God hath spoken in his holiness; I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth.
8 Gilead is mine; Manasseh is mine; Ephraim also is the strength of mine head; Judah is my lawgiver;
9 Moab is my washpot; over Edom will I cast out my shoe; over Philistia will I triumph.
10 Who will bring me into the strong city? who will lead me into Edom?
11 Wilt not thou, O God, who hast cast us off? and wilt not thou, O God, go forth with our hosts?
12 Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man.
13 Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.
Regarding this passage, Matthew Henry writes: “Believers may pray with assured faith and hope, for all the blessings of salvation which are secured to them by the faithful promise and covenant of God. Then let them expect from him help in every trouble and victory in every conflict. Whatever we do, whatever we gain, God must have all the glory. Lord, visit all our souls with this salvation, with this favour which thou bearest to thy chosen people.”
PRAYER FOR THE ESTATES
1. Clergy (church)
3. People (citizens)
4. The press (media)
5. New media/Online journalists
PRAYER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIP
– For all pastors, church leaders, denominational leaders, Bible teachers, missionaries, and ministry workers.
1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
President Donald Trump and his administration
Vice President Mike Pence
First Lady Melania Trump
Second Lady Karen Pence
All White House staff including: Chief of Staff for the National Security Council Keith Kellogg
All leaders of federal agencies including: General Services Administrator Timothy O. Horne
All state governors including: Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant
All city mayors including: Aurora, CO, Mayor Steve Hogan
All members of Congress including: California Representative Mark DeSaulnier
All law enforcement officials including: Cleveland, OH, Police Chief Calvin D. Williams Bowman
All military leaders including: Admiral James G. Foggo III, Commander of U.S. Naval Forces in Europe and Africa
Leaders of nations around the world: Ecuador’s President Lenín Moreno
The peace of Jerusalem
PRAYER FOR THE PEOPLE / CITIZENS
PRAYER FOR THE MEDIA
PRAYER FOR CURRENT EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD
– For the comfort of the families of the 71 people killed in a plane crash in Russia
– For the comfort of the over 60 families who have lost children to the flu this year
– For the comfort of the families of the 2 people killed in a mosque bombing in Libya; for the recovery of the 75 people injured
please heal her of her tumor without having to get an operation and please protect her unborn baby; please give her and her baby complete healing and good health
please have the company he works for to pay him his salary, give him working speed and good courage, help him to get a job from their client through his company; please bless his wife with the job You want her to have; please save his wife, his bosses, and his coworkers
please heal a boy in his church who is unable to walk
THOSE WHO HAVE ACCEPTED CHRIST AS SAVIOR
THOSE WHO HAVE RECOMMITTED THEIR LIVES TO CHRIST
DEVOTIONAL READING: “The Heart of Worship (Part 1)” from “The Purpose Driven Life,” by Rick Warren
Romans 6:13 says, “Give yourselves to God… Surrender your whole being to him to be used for righteous purposes.”
The heart of worship is surrender. Surrender is an unpopular word, disliked almost as much as the word submission. It implies losing, and no one wants to be a loser. Surrender evokes the unpleasant images of admitting defeat in battle, forfeiting a game, or yielding to a stronger opponent. The word is almost always used in a negative context. Captured criminals surrender to authorities.
In today’s competitive culture we are taught to never give up and never give in—so we don’t hear much about surrendering. If winning is everything, surrendering is unthinkable. We would rather talk about winning, succeeding, overcoming, and conquering than yielding, submitting, obeying, and surrendering. But surrendering to God is the heart of worship. It is the natural response to God’s amazing love and mercy. We give ourselves to him, not out of fear or duty, but in love, “because he first loved us.”
After spending eleven chapters of the book of Romans explaining God’s incredible grace to us, Paul urges us to fully surrender our lives to God in worship: “So then, my friends, because of God’s great mercy to us… offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him. This is the true worship that you should offer.”
True worship — bringing God pleasure — happens when you give yourself completely to God. Notice the first and last words of that verse are the same: offer. Offering yourself to God is what worship is all about.
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Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!