The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit.
August 19, 2021
Today’s Readings: Psalm 34:15-22 / Joshua 22:1-9 / 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
A prayer inspired by St. Helena, who the Church remembers on August 19th
Almighty God, who didst call thy servant Helena to an earthly Throne that she might advance thy heavenly kingdom, and didst endue her with zeal for thy Church and charity towards thy people; Grant unto us thy people that we may be fruitful in good works, and steadfast in our faith in thee, and finally by thy mercy may attain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and ever. Amen.
Come! O Come to the well of God’s Word and meet your Savior; the water He has given will become in you a spring of eternal life.
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.
“Schönster Herr Jesu” / “Fairest Lord Jesus”
A German Traditional
|Lyrics in German ||German Lyrics Translated ||Traditional English Lyrics |
|1. Schönster Herr Jesu,Schöpfer aller Dinge,Gottes und Marien Sohn!Dich will ich lieben,Dich will ich ehren,Meiner Seelen Freud und Wonn. |
2. Alle die SchönheitHimmels und der ErdenIst gefaßt in dir allein.Keiner soll immerLieber mir werdenAls du, schönster Jesus mein!
3. Schön ist die Sonne,Schön ist der Mond,Schön sind die Sterne allzumal:Jesus ist feiner,Jesus ist reinerAls die Engel im Himmelssaal.
4. Schön sind die Blumen,Schöner sind die MenschenIn der frischen Jugendzeit;Sie müssen sterben,Müssen verderben:Jesus lebt in Ewigkeit.
|1. Most beautiful Lord JesusCreator of all thingsSon of God the Father and the Virgin MaryThee will I loveThee will I honorMy soul delights and rejoices. |
2. All beautyBoth on earth and in the heavens aboveAre composed in thee aloneNone shall I everWant moreThan you, O most beautiful Lord of mine!
3. Beautiful is the sunBeautiful is the moonBeautiful are the stars altogetherJesus is fairerJesus is purerThan the hosts of heaven.
4. Beautiful are the flowersMore beautiful are theyIn the youthful days of yoreIn the end, all men must dieAnd perishJesus lives in eternity.
|1. Fairest Lord Jesus, ruler of all nature, O thou of God and man the Son, Thee will I cherish, Thee will I honor, thou, my soul’s glory, joy, and crown.|
2. Fair are the meadows, fairer still the woodlands, robed in the blooming garb of spring: Jesus is fairer, Jesus is purer who makes the woeful heart to sing.
3. Fair is the sunshine, fairer still the moonlight, and all the twinkling starry host: Jesus shines brighter, Jesus shines purer than all the angels heaven can boast.
4. Beautiful Savior! Lord of all the nations! Son of God and Son of Man! Glory and honor, praise, adoration, now and forevermore be thine.
A COLLECT FOR GUIDANCE
Heavenly Father, in you we live and move and have our being: We humbly pray you so to guide and govern us by your Holy Spirit, that in all the cares and occupations of our life we may not forget you, but may remember that we are ever walking in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 
Morning Reading: Psalm 34:15-22
God’s eyes are upon the righteous
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
and his ears are open to their cry.
The face of the Lord is against evildoers,
to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears,
and rescues them from all their troubles.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted,
and saves the crushed in spirit.
Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
but the Lord rescues them from them all.
He keeps all their bones;
not one of them will be broken.
Evil brings death to the wicked,
and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
The Lord redeems the life of his servants;
none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.
Pour your grace into our hearts, O Lord, that we who have known the incarnation of your Son Jesus Christ, announced by an angel to the Virgin Mary, may by his Cross and passion be brought to the glory of his resurrection; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. 
Midday Reading: Joshua 22:1-9
Joshua blesses eastern tribes
1 At that time Joshua summoned the Reubenites and the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, 2 and said to them, “You have kept all that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you and have obeyed my voice in all that I have commanded you. 3 You have not forsaken your brothers these many days, down to this day, but have been careful to keep the charge of the LORD your God. 4 And now the LORD your God has given rest to your brothers, as he promised them. Therefore turn and go to your tents in the land where your possession lies, which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you on the other side of the Jordan. 5 Only be very careful to observe the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, to love the LORD your God, and to walk in all his ways and to keep his commandments and to cling to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” 6 So Joshua blessed them and sent them away, and they went to their tents.
7 Now to the one half of the tribe of Manasseh Moses had given a possession in Bashan, but to the other half Joshua had given a possession beside their brothers in the land west of the Jordan. And when Joshua sent them away to their homes and blessed them, 8 he said to them, “Go back to your tents with much wealth and with very much livestock, with silver, gold, bronze, and iron, and with much clothing. Divide the spoil of your enemies with your brothers.” 9 So the people of Reuben and the people of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh returned home, parting from the people of Israel at Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go to the land of Gilead, their own land of which they had possessed themselves by command of the LORD through Moses.
The Eastern Tribes Return Home
“The accounts in the book of Joshua occur in the period immediately after Moses’s death. This was a new generation, not the one that had left Egypt. The story of Joshua is thus set when the nation of Israel first appeared in the land west of the Jordan River—the land that would bear their name.” 
“The conquest of Canaan did not happen overnight, nor was it completed during Joshua’s lifetime. The Book of Joshua covers only seven years and three campaigns against the people of Canaan, a struggle that would last until David’s reign c 400 years later. Yet, Joshua’s account anticipates full success and shows the people the way to ultimate victory: trust in the Lord, for He always fulfills His promises.” 
The events in today’s passage from Joshua occurred following the conquests. “The tribes that had been granted land east of the Jordan River had fulfilled their promise to accompany the rest of the nation in their conquest of the Promised Land, so Joshua sent them back to their families across the Jordan.” 
“Before the conquest had begun, these tribes were given land on the east side of the Jordan River. But before they could settle down, they had to first promise to help the other tribes conquer the land on the west side (Num 32:20-22). They had patiently and diligently carried out their promised duties. Joshua commended them for doing just that. At last they were permitted to return to their families and build their cities. Follow-through is vital in God’s work. Beware of the temptation to quit early and leave God’s work undone.” 
“The two-and-a-half who [went] back to dwell on the east side of the Jordan are like the apostles, who [would] spread out to other lands after Pentecost and bring the gospel to the nations.”  Origen (c. 184 – c. 253) wrote, “[Joshua] assembles the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh, who had served as soldiers with him to overcome the foes of the Israelites, and he dismisses them to go to their inheritance with certain gifts given to them, as it is written. Whereby this seems to indicate the mystery that “when the fullness of the nations will come in” [Rm 11:25], they receive from the Lord Jesus what was promised to them, those who had been taught and instructed by Moses and who by prayers and entreaties brought aid to us who are placed in the contest. They have not yet “attained the promises” [Heb 11:39], waiting so that our calling might also be fulfilled, as the apostle says. But now at last with the gifts they receive from Jesus they may attain the perfection that had been deferred for them so that each one may dwell in peace with every war and every battle ceasing,” (Homilies on Joshua). 
“The tribes of Transjordan were encouraged to remain faithful to the Lord and to his Commandments just as they had been faithful in their promises to engage in battle alongside the other tribes of Israel.”  In verse 5, “Joshua briefly restated the central message Moses gave the people in Deuteronomy: Obedience should be based on love for God. Although the Israelites had completed their military responsibility, Joshua reminded them of their spiritual responsibility. Sometimes we think so much about what we are to do that we neglect thinking about who we are to be. If we know we are God’s children, we will love him and joyfully serve him. We must not let daily service take away from our love for God.”  Herein, we find a “summary of how Israel is to respond in faith under the Mosaic covenant. love . . . walk . . . keep . . . cling . . . serve. These verbs guide believing Israelites in their response of faith. Israel’s actions flow from the Lord’s prior deep affection displayed through His acts of deliverance. (Cf 1Jn 4:19).” 
Verse 6 tells us that Joshua blessed the tribes and sent them on their way. “Blessing in its highest sense invokes the name of the Lord for spiritual and physical well-being. Joshua may have used a liturgical formula, such as the Aaronic blessing of Nu 6:22–27, or v 8 may quote the actual words of the blessing… If these are the actual words [v. 8] of Joshua’s blessing, he gives the tribes a peaceful dismissal (like our ‘Depart in peace’) and speaks of their being able to share their wealth (giving to others is a blessed activity and a blessing for the giver, Ac 20:35).” 
“Spoils of war from Jericho had been devoted to destruction at God’s command (ch 6). But thereafter, Israel was allowed to keep the spoils from their victories and amassed a great quantity of their enemies’ livestock, metals, and clothing. your brothers. Fellow tribesmen who had stayed behind in Gilead, east of the Jordan, to protect their families and livestock.” 
Our reading concludes (v. 9): So the people of Reuben and the people of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh returned home, parting from the people of Israel at Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go to the land of Gilead, their own land of which they had possessed themselves by command of the LORD through Moses. Canaan was the land west of the Jordan, while Gilead was the land east of the Jordan.
Review: “In the first of his three farewell sermons, Joshua dismisses the eastern tribes after they faithfully finished the work they promised to do. Commitment, responsibility, and faithfulness to our word are not always present among us. The commitment and faithfulness of the Lord in saving us from our enemies is proven by the cross of Christ, who grants us faith and faithfulness. • When we finish the tasks You give us, Lord, dismiss us with Your blessing, Fill our hearts with joy and peace; Let us each, Your love possessing, Triumph in redeeming grace. O refresh us; O refresh us, Trav’ling through this wilderness. Amen.” 
A COLLECT FOR THE PRESENCE OF CHRIST
Lord Jesus, stay with us, for evening is at hand and the day is past; be our companion in the way, kindle our hearts, and awaken hope, that we may know you as you are revealed in Scripture and the breaking of bread. Grant this for the sake of your love. Amen. 
Eventide Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11
The breastplate of faith and love
1 Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. 2 For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4 But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. 5 For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. 6 So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. 8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
The Day of the Lord
“Built on the Aegean Sea, Thessalonica was the most prominent city in the Roman province of Macedonia and served as a naval and commercial center. While many of the early churches were composed primarily of Jews who believed in Christ, the Thessalonian believers were mostly Gentiles, former idol worshippers (2:9). They experienced persecution by fellow citizens, stirred up by the Jews (1:6; 2:14; Acts 17:5-9), and had difficulty adhering to Christian values in a pagan setting.” 
“First Thessalonians contributes to our understanding of the second coming of Christ. Paul wrote to correct some misunderstandings of this doctrine, and in the process he showed us that Christ’s return gives us true hope. First Thessalonians and 1 Corinthians (chap. 15) are the only books that explicitly mention that Christians who are alive at Christ’s return will be changed and will meet Christ in the air without dying.” 
In today’s passage, Paul addressed a problem amongst the Christians in Thessalonica. “The Thessalonian Christians had been speculating about the return of the Lord and making predictions. Paul tells them you have no need (v. 1) for that kind of information (indeed, it is not available!). Does a thief in the night (v. 2) announce his coming? The disciples had gotten the same kind of answers to their questions on the Second Coming from Christ Himself (Mt 24:36; Acts 1:6, 7).” 
“And suppose we know the end; what is this to us? Christians are called not to set dates but to make themselves ready to meet the Lord by being watchful and sober (v. 6). Our place is to be ceaselessly aware of the primacy of God’s Kingdom and to have full control over our spiritual faculties.” 
“Do not place your confidence in your youth, nor think that you have a very fixed term of life, ‘For the day of the Lord comes as a thief in the night.’ On this account he has made our end invisible, so that we might demonstrate clearly our diligence and forethought. Do you not see men taken away prematurely day after day? On this account a certain one admonishes, ‘Don’t delay in turning to the Lord, and don’t put things off from day to day,’ lest at any time, while you delay, you are destroyed. Let the old man keep this admonition; let the young man heed this advice. Indeed, are you in insecurity, and are you rich, and do you abound in wealth, and does no affliction happen to you? Still hear what Paul says: ‘When they say peace and safety, then sudden destruction comes upon them.’ Affairs change often. We are not masters of our end,’ (St. John Chrysostom). 
Review: “After describing the future glory of those who have died in Christ, Paul now proceeds to tell the Thessalonians about the coming Day of Judgment in which the Lord will give His final verdict. Let us walk in holiness and righteousness so that we may not be ashamed when our Lord appears to judge our work. The Lord who has chosen us for salvation and died for us will be on our side on the final Day of Judgment. • Lord, help us to recognize that there is a Day of Judgment for us. May the work and righteousness of our Lord Jesus Christ be our defense when You come to judge the living and the dead. Amen.” 
Look down, O Lord, from your heavenly throne, illumine this night with your celestial brightness, and from the children of light banish the deeds of darkness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 
Devotionals compiled/written by S. P. Rogers
 Schönster Herr JESU / Fairest Lord Jesus (CHRISTOPH DALITZ). Schönster Herr Jesu / Fairest Lord Jesus (Christoph Dalitz) – ChoralWiki. (n.d.). https://www.cpdl.org/wiki/index.php/Sch%C3%B6nster_Herr_Jesu_/_Fairest_Lord_Jesus_(Christoph_Dalitz)
 Ibid. 1
 Author: AnonymousIn some hymnals, the editors noted that a hymn’s author is unknown to them. (n.d.). Fairest Lord Jesus. Hymnary.org. https://hymnary.org/text/fairest_lord_jesus_ruler_of_all_nature
 Morning Office, Anglican Church in North America 2019 Book of Common Prayer
 Midday Office, Anglican Church in North America 2019 Book of Common Prayer
 Joshua. (2019). In Ancient faith study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 714). Nashville: Holman Bible.
 A., E. E. (2016). Joshua. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 1654-1655). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
 Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Joshua. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 1112). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.
 Ibid. 8, P. 5485
 Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). Joshua. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 314). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.
 Origen. (2019). Psalms. In Ancient faith study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 772). Nashville: Holman Bible.
 Cole, J. (Ed.). (2015). Joshua. In Didache Bible: With commentaries based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church (Kindle ed., p. 633). Downers Grove, IL: Midwest Theological Forum,, Ignatius Press.
 Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Joshua. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 5485). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.
 A., E. E. (2016). Joshua. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 1776). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
 Ibid. 14
 Ibid. 14
 A., E. E. (2016). Color map 2: Old Testament Regions [MAP]. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 10591). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
 A., E. E. (2016). Joshua. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 1776-1777). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
 Evening Office, Anglican Church in North America 2019 Book of Common Prayer
 Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). 1 Thessalonians. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 1654). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.
 1 Thessalonians. (2019). In Ancient faith study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 3383). Nashville: Holman Bible.
 Academic Community of St. Athanasius Academy of Orthodox Theology (2008). 1 Thessalonians. In The Orthodox study Bible (p. 1658). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson.
 Ibid. 23
 Chrysostom. (2019). Psalms. In Ancient faith study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 3383-3384). Nashville: Holman Bible.
 A., E. E. (2016). 1 Thessalonians. In The Lutheran study Bible: English standard version (Kindle ed., pp. 8781). Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House.
 Compline, Anglican Church in North America 2019 Book of Common Prayer
 Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). The Conquered Land [MAP]. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7653). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.
 Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). The Land Yet to be Conquered [MAP]. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7656). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.
 Tyndale House Publishers. (2012). Location of Thessalonica [MAP]. In Chronological life application study Bible (Kindle ed., p. 7898). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub.