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Daily Prayer - 2013-03-23

Presence

"I stand at the door and knock," says the Lord.
What a wonderful privilege
that the Lord of all creation desires to come to me.
I welcome His presence.

Freedom

Your death on the cross has set me free.
I can live joyously and freely,
without fear of death.
Your mercy knows no bounds.

Consciousness

Help me Lord to be more conscious of your presence.
Teach me to recognise your presence in others.
Fill my heart with gratitude for the times Your love has been shown to me through the care of others.

The Word of God

John 11:45-56

Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what he had done. So the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the council, and said, ‘What are we to do? This man is performing many signs. If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our holy place and our nation.’ But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, ‘You know nothing at all! You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed.’ He did not say this on his own, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus was about to die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to put him to death.

Jesus therefore no longer walked about openly among the Jews, but went from there to a town called Ephraim in the region near the wilderness; and he remained there with the disciples.

Now the Passover of the Jews was near, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves. They were looking for Jesus and were asking one another as they stood in the temple, ‘What do you think? Surely he will not come to the festival, will he?’

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • The people reacted to Jesus and his teaching differently, as they do nowadays. Some believed in him after he raised Lazarus from the dead. Others were unsure, so they went to their religious leaders, to find out what they were thinking about him. This was a way of escaping from answering personally who Jesus was for them.
  • It was recognised by all that Christ was a wonder-worker. The authorities became afraid that if they did not curtail him, all would believe in him. One of them, Caiphas, felt it was better that one man die, to save the Jewish people. His view was a political one, not a religious one. There was truth in what he said, but not in the way he was thinking.
  • Jesus kept out of danger for a time in Ephraim. But even though many thought that he would not go up to Jerusalem for the feast, he was always ready to do the right thing.

Conversation

Remembering that I am still in God's presence,
I imagine Jesus himself standing or sitting beside me,
and say whatever is on my mind, whatever is in my heart,
speaking as one friend to another.

Conclusion

I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.

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