Daily Devotional Materials
Week of the
Eighth Sunday after Trinity
– Friday –
But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteous. – Romans 4:5.
He that works, he that in any way works, in order thus to stand righteous in the sight of God, he – note this well! – renounces the grace of God and lays claim to salvation not as a gift of grace, but as a gift which God is in duty bound to give him in remuneration for his works. He that is so blinded as to work in this way, in defiance and derision of the entire Word of God, shall receive wages very different from salvation. “For as many as are of the works of the Law are under the curse.” (Galatians 3:10.) “But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly.” – Stop! What does this mean: “that justifieth the ungodly“? This means that God was in Christ, reconciling the world, the ungodly world, to Himself, thus not imputing their trespasses to them. Now, then: “To him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.” What does this mean: “to him his faith is counted for righteousness“? It means this: To him this is counted for righteousness what the Word of Reconciliation proclaims and communicates unto him, namely, that God in Christ reconciled all the world unto Himself and therefore no longer imputed their trespasses to them: – this gracious deed of God, which He accepts in faith, on the strength of the Word of God, is counted to him for righteousness. The believer accepts for himself what God in Christ did for the whole ungodly world, namely, that God in Christ justified them in His sight. Thus, through such faith, he has the righteousness of God, and now in fact he is the beloved child of God and is saved. Therefore, do not work, but believe in Him that justifies the ungodly. Then shall your faith be counted to you for righteousness. And you shall obtain Salvation.
PRAYER. – My Lord and God, grant grace to me, Thy child, to be diligent, indeed, in good works, but nevermore to presume that by such miserable works of mine 1 might become righteous before Thee. Help me to live and to die in the right faith which alone justifies me, in the firm assurance that in Christ Thou hast justified the ungodly, and hence also me. Amen.
‘Tis not by works of righteousness
Which our own hands have done,
But we are saved by sovereign grace
Abounding through His Son.
Hymn 307, 3.(ELHB)
2 Corinthians 2:1-3:3
2:1 But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness.2 For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me?3 And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all.4 For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you.5 But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not overcharge you all.6 Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. 7 So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.8 Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.9 For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things.10 To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; 11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.12 Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,13 I had no rest in my spirit, because I found not Titus my brother: but taking my leave of them, I went from thence into Macedonia.14 Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.15 For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:16 To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?17 For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.
3:1 Do we begin again to commend ourselves? or need we, as some others, epistles of commendation to you, or letters of commendation from you?2 Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:3 Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.
2 Chronicles 29:1-23
29:1 Hezekiah began to reign when he was five and twenty years old, and he reigned nine and twenty years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Abijah, the daughter of Zechariah.2 And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that David his father had done.3 He in the first year of his reign, in the first month, opened the doors of the house of the LORD, and repaired them.4 And he brought in the priests and the Levites, and gathered them together into the east street,5 And said unto them, Hear me, ye Levites, sanctify now yourselves, and sanctify the house of the LORD God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place.6 For our fathers have trespassed, and done that which was evil in the eyes of the LORD our God, and have forsaken him, and have turned away their faces from the habitation of the LORD, and turned their backs. 7 Also they have shut up the doors of the porch, and put out the lamps, and have not burned incense nor offered burnt offerings in the holy place unto the God of Israel.8 Wherefore the wrath of the LORD was upon Judah and Jerusalem, and he hath delivered them to trouble, to astonishment, and to hissing, as ye see with your eyes. 9 For, lo, our fathers have fallen by the sword, and our sons and our daughters and our wives are in captivity for this.10 Now it is in mine heart to make a covenant with the LORD God of Israel, that his fierce wrath may turn away from us.11 My sons, be not now negligent: for the LORD hath chosen you to stand before him, to serve him, and that ye should minister unto him, and burn incense.12 Then the Levites arose, Mahath the son of Amasai, and Joel the son of Azariah, of the sons of the Kohathites: and of the sons of Merari, Kish the son of Abdi, and Azariah the son of Jehalelel: and of the Gershonites; Joah the son of Zimmah, and Eden the son of Joah:13 And of the sons of Elizaphan; Shimri, and Jeiel: and of the sons of Asaph; Zechariah, and Mattaniah:14 And of the sons of Heman; Jehiel, and Shimei: and of the sons of Jeduthun; Shemaiah, and Uzziel.15 And they gathered their brethren, and sanctified themselves, and came, according to the commandment of the king, by the words of the LORD, to cleanse the house of the LORD. 16 And the priests went into the inner part of the house of the LORD, to cleanse it, and brought out all the uncleanness that they found in the temple of the LORD into the court of the house of the LORD. And the Levites took it, to carry it out abroad into the brook Kidron.17 Now they began on the first day of the first month to sanctify, and on the eighth day of the month came they to the porch of the LORD: so they sanctified the house of the LORD in eight days; and in the sixteenth day of the first month they made an end.18 Then they went in to Hezekiah the king, and said, We have cleansed all the house of the LORD, and the altar of burnt offering, with all the vessels thereof, and the shewbread table, with all the vessels thereof.19 Moreover all the vessels, which king Ahaz in his reign did cast away in his transgression, have we prepared and sanctified, and, behold, they are before the altar of the LORD.20 Then Hezekiah the king rose early, and gathered the rulers of the city, and went up to the house of the LORD.21 And they brought seven bullocks, and seven rams, and seven lambs, and seven he goats, for a sin offering for the kingdom, and for the sanctuary, and for Judah. And he commanded the priests the sons of Aaron to offer them on the altar of the LORD.22 So they killed the bullocks, and the priests received the blood, and sprinkled it on the altar: likewise, when they had killed the rams, they sprinkled the blood upon the altar: they killed also the lambs, and they sprinkled the blood upon the altar.23 And they brought forth the he goats for the sin offering before the king and the congregation; and they laid their hands upon them:
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