June 19 Devotional (2021)

“And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world…”

June 19th Commemoration: 

Sundar Singh, Evangelist in India and Teacher of the Faith


June 19, 2021
Ordinary Time

Today’s Readings:   Job 37:1-13 / Profile of Job / Luke 21:25-28

Invitatory

O Lord, open thou our lips. 

And our mouth shall show forth thy praise.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn

“OH Happy Day”

Morning Prayer

A PRAYER TO CHRIST FOR GUIDANCE AND ILLUMINATION 

Christ, the true light, You enlighten and sanctify every man who comes into the world. Make the light of Your countenance shine upon us, that in it we may see Your unapproachable light, and guide our steps that we may keep Your commandments. AMEN. [1]

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. 

Alleluia!

Short Verse

Jesus taught us, saying: ‘You must believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe it on the evidence of these works.’ 

John 14:11-12
“The Wrath of Elihu” (1805) 
By William Blake; 
one of his series of illustrations of the Book of Job
(source)

Morning Reading: Job 37:1-13

Elihu extols God’s power

1 “At this also my heart trembles

and leaps out of its place.

2 Keep listening to the thunder of his voice

and the rumbling that comes from his mouth.

3 Under the whole heaven he lets it go,

and his lightning to the corners of the earth.

4 After it his voice roars;

he thunders with his majestic voice,

and he does not restrain the lightnings when his voice is heard.

5 God thunders wondrously with his voice;

he does great things that we cannot comprehend.

6 For to the snow he says, ‘Fall on the earth,’

likewise to the downpour, his mighty downpour.

7 He seals up the hand of every man,

that all men whom he made may know it.

8 Then the beasts go into their lairs,

and remain in their dens.

9 From its chamber comes the whirlwind,

and cold from the scattering winds.

10 By the breath of God ice is given,

and the broad waters are frozen fast.

11 He loads the thick cloud with moisture;

the clouds scatter his lightning.

12 They turn around and around by his guidance,

to accomplish all that he commands them

on the face of the habitable world.

13 Whether for correction or for his land

or for love, he causes it to happen.

“Ship in the sea storm “
By Nela Radomirovic
(source)

Morning Lesson

Elihu Proclaims God’s Majesty

Today’s reading from Job comes from the section of Monologues (29:1-42:6), specifically from a section of speeches by Job’s friend, Elihu (32:1-37:24). In our reading, “Elihu sees storms as acts of God that display His lordship. Fear of an approaching storm can produce a wildly beating heart. Throughout this section, Elihu reveals an impressive understanding of atmospheric conditions and their effects.” [2]

In verse 2, Elihu urged, Keep listening to the thunder of his voice and the rumbling that comes from his mouth. In Isaiah 31:4, the verb form of the word rumbling “is used of the growling of a lion. Job has been disturbed by God’s activity in his life. Elihu is telling Job that God’s presence will naturally unsettle him.” [3]

In vers 5, Elihu proclaimed that God does great things that we cannot comprehend. Here we find a “summary statement pertaining not only to storms,” but also to the verses which then follow, “which speak of God’s wondrous power.” [4]

“God uses the random winter storms and the rain and snow to show man his weakness in the face of God’s overwhelming power. Indeed, Christ taught this lesson to His disciples when He calmed the storm (Mt 8:23-27).” [5] In fact, “human activity is affected by the weather, which can halt planting and harvest,” seal[ing] up the hand of every man (v. 7). [6] As St. John Chrysostom wrote, “He has created man to be weak, and yet man thinks himself to be strong; and thereby he becomes even more feeble.” [7]

In verses 9 and 10, Elihu says that from its chamber comes the whirlwind and that by the breath of God ice is given. “Ancients believed various winds were stored in chambers in heaven; when God willed, He opened the doors of the appropriate chamber.” [8] Breath of God is a “metaphor for a chilling wind.” [9]

“Despite technological advances, people remain at the mercy of the weather.” [10] St. Gregory of Nazianzus wrote, “What scientific laws, pray, can you lay down concerning thunder and lightening, O you who thunder from the earth, and cannot shine with even little sparks of truth?” [11] The weather, however, is not out of control. Rather, “the clouds are carrying out God’s commands” (v. 12). [12] In fact, “through the weather, God attend[ed] to the needs of His chosen people” (v. 13). [13]

“Rather than question God’s motives, Elihu counseled Job to stand in awe of God’s works and to glorify him with good works.” [14] “The awesome power of a storm reminds us how truly small we are. Elihu [told] Job to abandon obstinacy and, with proper fear and trust, to submit to God as his Lord, thereby preparing Job for God’s visit in the whirlwind (38:1). All of the days of our lives are spent in such preparation. Though we may become distracted by many things in this life, both bane and blessing, God prepares us for His visitation, when all that will matter will be our confidence in His grace through Jesus Christ, our Lord. • Gracious God, prepare me for Your appearing. Amen.” [15]


OPTIONAL FURTHER READING:
Advice from Job’s friends
[16]

Midday Prayer

A THANKSGIVING FOR LIFE WITHIN THE CHURCH

We give you thanks and praise, Lord Jesus Christ, that you have welcomed us at your table; 

      we give you thanks.

For the joy of worship with brothers and sisters; 

      we give you thanks.

For the Word proclaimed and heard anew week by week; 

      we give you thanks.

For hearing our prayers on behalf of the world, for those we love and our own needs; 

      we give you thanks.

For accepting our gifts and making them part of your eternal offering to the Father; 

      we give you thanks.

For giving us a place within the awe-filled hymn of all creation; 

      we give you thanks.

For the regular remembrance of your passion, death, and resurrection; 

      we give you thanks.

For the outward signs of inward grace you so freely give into our hands; 

      we give you thanks.

For the peace that passes understanding and the joy of service; 

      we give you thanks. Amen. [17]

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. 

Alleluia!

Short Verse

I put my trust in your mercy;* my heart is joyful because of your saving help. I will sing to the LORD, for he has dealt with me richly;* I will praise the Name of the Lord Most High. 

Psalm 13:5-6
“Job” 
(bronze, 1945)
By Ivan Meštrović. 
Installed at Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York.
(source)

Midday Reading

Profile of Job

“Children never tire of asking why. Yet the question produces a bitter taste the older we get. Children wonder about everything; adults wonder about suffering. We would expect Job’s wealth and family to give him a very happy life, and for a while, they did. But the loss and pain he experienced, and his immediate response, are shocking. To those so quick to ask why at the smallest misfortune, Job’s faithfulness seems incredible. But even Job had something to learn. We can learn with him.” [18]

“Our age of ‘instant’ everything has caused us to lose the ability to wait. We expect to learn patience instantly, and in our hurry, we miss the contradiction. Of all that we want now, relief from pain is at the top of our list. We want an instant cure for everything from toothaches to heartbreaks.” [19]

“Although some pains have been cured, we still live in a world where many people suffer. Job was not expecting instant answers for the intense emotional and physical pain he endured. But in the end, what broke Job’s patience was not the suffering but rather not knowing why he suffered.” [20]

“When Job expressed his frustration, his friends were ready with their answers. They believed that the law of cause and effect applied to all people’s experiences. Their view of life boiled down to this: Good things happen to good people, and bad things happen to bad people. Because of this, they felt their role was to help Job admit to whatever sin was causing his suffering.” [21]

“Job actually looked at life almost the same way as his friends. What he couldn’t understand was why he was suffering so much when he was sure he had done nothing to deserve such punishment. When God finally spoke, he didn’t offer Job an answer. Instead, he drove home the point that it is better to know God than to know answers.” [22]

“Often we suffer consequences for bad decisions and actions. Sometimes suffering shapes us for special service to others. Sometimes suffering is an attack by Satan on our lives. And sometimes we don’t know why we suffer. At those times, are we willing to trust God in spite of unanswered questions?” [23]

Strengths and accomplishments [24] 

  • A man of faith, patience, and endurance 
  • Known as a generous and caring person Very wealthy 

Weakness and mistake [25]

  • Allowed his desire to understand why he was suffering to overwhelm him and make him question God 

Lessons from his life [26]

  • Knowing God is better than knowing answers Pain is not always punishment 

Vital statistics [27]

  • Where: Uz 
  • Occupation: Wealthy landowner and livestock owner 
  • Relatives: Wife and first 10 children not named. 
  • Daughters from the second set of 10 children are named: Jemimah, Keziah, Keren-happuch. Contemporaries: Eliphaz, Bildad, Zophar, Elihu

Key verses [28]

  • “For examples of patience in suffering, dear brothers and sisters, look at the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. We give great honor to those who endure under suffering. For instance, you know about Job, a man of great endurance. You can see how the Lord was kind to him at the end, for the Lord is full of tenderness and mercy” (Jas 5:10-11). 
  • Job’s story is told in the book of Job. He is also referred to in Ezekiel 14:14, 20; James 5:11.
[42]

Eventide Prayer

Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love’s sake. Amen. [29]

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. 

Alleluia!

Short Verse

You strengthen me more and more;* you enfold me and comfort me. 

Psalm 71:21
“Ships in a storm”
By Ivan Aivazovsky
(source)

Eventide Reading: Luke 21:25-28

The roaring of the sea and the waves

25 “And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, 26 people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27 And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

Eventide Lesson

The Coming of the Son of Man

In our reading from Luke, “Jesus shift[ed] His focus to the end times with His second mention of cosmic turmoil (see v. 11; Is 24:18-20; 34:4; Ezek 32:7, 8; Joel 2:30, 31)… The terror of cosmic chaos will cause apprehension about what is coming.” [30]

Verse 27 says, and then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud. “The reference here is to the authoritative return of Jesus. The allusion to the cloud and the figure comes from Dan. 7:13, 14, with its picture of One who receives authority from the Ancient of Days. Jesus viewed this text in terms of an apocalyptic deliverance. The image of the cloud is important, since God is identified as riding the clouds in the OT (see Ex 34:5; Ps 104:3)… The Son of Man has divine authority to judge the world.” [31]

In verse 28, Jesus tells us that when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near. “This is the sign of the deliverance of Jesus’ followers. The Son of Man acts on behalf of those who have suffered in His name.” [32]


OPTIONAL FURTHER READING:
About the Gospel of Luke

Circumstances of Writing 

“The author of the Third Gospel is not named. Considerable evidence points to Luke as its author. Much of that proof is found in the book of Acts, which identifies itself as a sequel to Luke (Ac 1:1-3). A major line of evidence has to do with the so-called “we” sections of the book (Ac 16:10-17; 20:5-15; 21:1-18; 27:1-37; 28:1-16). Most of Acts is narrated in third-person plural (“they,” “them”), but some later sections having to do with the ministry of the apostle Paul unexpectedly shift to first-person plural (‘we,’ ‘us’). This indicates that the author had joined the apostle Paul for the events recorded in those passages. Since there are no ‘we’ passages in the Gospel of Luke, that fits with the author stating that he used eyewitness testimony to the life of Jesus (1:2), indicating he was not such an eyewitness himself.” [33]

“Among Paul’s well-known coworkers, the most likely candidate is Luke, the doctor (see Col 4:14; Phm 24). That is also the unanimous testimony of the earliest Christian writers (e.g., Justin Martyr, the Muratorian Canon, and Tertullian). Since Luke is not named among the workers who were ‘of the circumcised’ (i.e., a Jew; Col 4:11), he was almost certainly a Gentile. That explains the healthy emphasis on Gentiles in Luke (6:17; 7:1-10). Luke also reflects an interest in medical matters (e.g., 4:38; 14:2).” [34]

“Since Luke wrote both the Third Gospel and the book of Acts (Ac 1:1-3), it is relevant to consider the dating of both books together. The events at the end of Acts occurred around AD 62–63. That is the earliest point at which Acts could have been written. If Acts was written in the early AD 60s from Rome, where Paul was imprisoned for two years (Ac 28:30), the Third Gospel could date from an earlier stage of that period of imprisonment. The other reasonable possibility is during Paul’s earlier two-year imprisonment in Caesarea (Ac 24:27). From that location, Luke would have been able to travel and interview the eyewitnesses to Jesus’s life and ministry who were still alive.” [35]

“The Third Gospel is addressed to ‘most honorable Theophilus’ (Lk 1:3), about whom nothing else is known other than that he is also the recipient of the book of Acts (Ac 1:1). The Greek name Theophilus means ‘lover of God’ or ‘friend of God’ and implies that he was a Gentile, probably Greek. He seems to have been a relatively new believer, recently instructed about Jesus and the Christian faith (Lk 1:4). The title ‘most honorable’ indicates that, at the least, he was a person of high standing and financial substance. It may also reflect that he was an official with some governmental authority and power.” [36]

Contribution to the Bible 

“Nearly sixty percent of the material in the Gospel of Luke is unique. Thus, there is a great deal that readers of Scripture would not know if the Third Gospel were not in the Bible. Notable among the larger distinctive portions are: (1) much of the material in Luke 1–2 about the births of John the Baptist and Jesus, (2) the only biblical material on Jesus’s childhood and pre-ministry adult life (2:40-52), (3) a genealogy for Jesus (3:23-38) that is significantly different from the one in Matthew 1:1-17, (4) most of the ‘travelogue’ section about Jesus’s journey to Jerusalem (Lk 9:51–19:44), (5) a considerably different slant on the destruction of the temple (21:5-38) from the Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24–25 and Mark 13, and (6) quite a bit of fresh material in the post-resurrection appearances, including the Emmaus Road, a distinctive statement of the Great Commission, and the only description in the Gospels of Jesus’s ascension into heaven (Lk 24:13-53).” [37]

Structure 

“Luke’s distinctive ‘narrative about the events’ (1:1) of the life of Jesus is written in ‘orderly sequence’ (1:3), though not strict chronological sequence in many cases. Generally, after the key events leading up to the beginning of Christ’s public ministry (1:5–4:13), the flow of the book is from his early ministry in and around Galilee (4:14–9:50), through an extended description of ministry related to his journey to Jerusalem (9:51–19:44), climaxing in the events of Passion Week and post-resurrection appearances in and around Jerusalem (19:45–24:53).” [38]

St. Ambrose on Luke 

“[T]hose who think that the four living creatures described in the Apocalypse are to be understood as the four books of the gospel wish this book to be represented by the calf; for the calf is the priestly victim. This Gospel is represented fittingly by the calf, because it begins with priests and ends with the Calf who, having taken upon himself the sins of all, was sacrificed for the life of the whole world. He was a priestly Calf. He is both Calf and Priest. He is the Priest, because he is our Propitiator. We have him as an advocate with the Father. He is the Calf, because he redeemed us with his own blood.” [39]


Compline Prayer

Thank you God for the world so sweet,

Thank you God for the food we eat,

Thank you, God for the birds that sing,

Thank you, God, for everything!”

Amen. [40]


Devotionals compiled/written by S.P. Rogers

Citations:

[1] Papavassiliou, V. (2014). Morning Prayers. In The ancient faith prayer book (Kindle ed., p. 19). Chesterton, IN: Ancient Faith Publishing.

[2] A., E. E. (2016). Job. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 3598). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[3] Ibid. 2

[4] Ibid. 2

[5] Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). Job. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 842). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

[6] A., E. E. (2016). Job. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 3598). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[7] Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). Job. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 842). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

[8] A., E. E. (2016). Job. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 3598). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[9] Ibid. 8

[10] Ibid. 8, P. 3598-3599

[11] Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). Job. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 842). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

[12] A., E. E. (2016). Job. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 3599). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[13] Ibid. 12

[14] Cole, J. (Ed.). (2015). Job. In Didache Bible: With commentaries based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church (Kindle ed., p. 1371). Downers Grove,, IL: Midwest Theological Forum,, Ignatius Press.

[15] A., E. E. (2016). Job. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 3600). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.

[16] Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Advice from Job’s Friends [Chart]. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7278). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.

[17] Cobb, D., & Olsen, D. A. (2014). Saint Augustine’s prayer book: A book of devotions (Kindle ed., p. 69-70). Cincinnati, OH: Forward Movement.

[18] Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Profile of Job. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7987). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.

[19] Ibid. 18

[20] Ibid. 18

[21] Ibid. 18

[22] Ibid. 18

[23] Ibid. 18

[24] Ibid. 18

[25] Ibid. 18

[26] Ibid. 18

[27] Ibid. 18, P. 7988

[28] Ibid. 18, P. 7988

[29] Episcopal Church. (1979). Daily Office. In The Book of common prayer: And administration of the sacraments, and other rites and ceremonies of the church, according to the use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America: Together with the psalter, or, Psalms of David (pp. 124). New York, NY: Church Publishing Incorporated.

[30] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (2007). Luke. In NKJV study Bible: New King James Version (Second ed., p. 1642). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.

[31] Ibid. 30

[32] Ibid. 30

[33] Luke. (2019). In Ancient faith study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 2864). Nashville: Holman Bible.

[34] Ibid. 33

[35] Ibid. 33

[36] Ibid. 33

[37] Ibid. 33

[38] Ibid. 33

[39] Ibid. 33, P. 2865

[40] Achwal, A. (2020, January 09). 10 popular night Time prayers for children. Retrieved April 20, 2021, from https://parenting.firstcry.com/articles/10-popular-bedtime-prayers-for-children/

[42] Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Job and Jesus [Chart]. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7281). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.

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