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Daily Prayer - 2012-11-25

Presence

Dear Lord as I come to you today
Fill my heart and my whole being
with the wonder of your presence.

Freedom

Lord, I pray for your gift of freedom.
May your Holy Spirit
guide those in power to work for
equality for all your people.

Consciousness

Where do I sense hope, encouragement, and growth areas in my life?
By looking back over the last few months, I may be able to see which activities and occasions have produced rich fruit.
If I do notice such areas, I will determine to give those areas both time and space in the future.

The Word of God

John 18:33-37

Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?" Pilate replied, "I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?" Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here." Pilate asked him, "So you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice."

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • There is always a certain ambiguity in giving Jesus the title of king. This is partly due to the varying attitudes to kings throughout history and in different cultures. But the greatest ambiguity surfaces in today's reading. Jesus has to correct Pilate's understanding of Jesus' role: "My kingdom is not from this world" or "My kingdom does not belong to this world". In spite of this warning we have sometimes celebrated this feast in a (worldly) triumphalist manner that does not harmonise with Jesus' self-understanding.
  • Why is it important to read a scene from the passion today? Does it help us to grasp what the kingship of Christ truly means? (Notice Jesus' stress on truth in this passage). How can Jesus be both king and Suffering Servant?

Conversation

Begin to talk to Jesus about the piece of scripture you have just read.
What part of it strikes a chord in you?
Perhaps the words of a friend - or some story you have heard recently -
will slowly rise to the surface of your consciousness.
If so, does the story throw light on what the scripture passage may be trying to say to you?

Conclusion

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning,
is now and ever shall be,
world without end.

Amen

If you appreciated the daily prayer or have any suggestions or insights we will be glad to hear from you.