Daily Devotional for July 24-30
Wisdom of Solomon this week…
12:For thine incorruptible Spirit is in all things.
2Therefore chastenest thou them by little and little that offend, and warnest them by putting them in remembrance wherein they have offended, that leaving their wickedness they may believe on thee, O Lord.
3For it was thy will to destroy by the hands of our fathers both those old inhabitants of thy holy land,
4Whom thou hatedst for doing most odious works of witchcrafts, and wicked sacrifices;
5And also those merciless murderers of children, and devourers of man’s flesh, and the feasts of blood,
6With their priests out of the midst of their idolatrous crew, and the parents, that killed with their own hands souls destitute of help:
7That the land, which thou esteemedst above all other, might receive a worthy colony of God’s children.
8Nevertheless even those thou sparedst as men, and didst send wasps, forerunners of thine host, to destroy them by little and little.
9Not that thou wast unable to bring the ungodly under the hand of the righteous in battle, or to destroy them at once with cruel beasts, or with one rough word:
10But executing thy judgments upon them by little and little, thou gavest them place of repentance, not being ignorant that they were a naughty generation, and that their malice was bred in them, and that their cogitation would never be changed.
11For it was a cursed seed from the beginning; neither didst thou for fear of any man give them pardon for those things wherein they sinned.
12For who shall say, What hast thou done? or who shall withstand thy judgment? or who shall accuse thee for the nations that perish, whom thou made? or who shall come to stand against thee, to be revenged for the unrighteous men?
13For neither is there any God but thou that careth for all, to whom thou mightest shew that thy judgment is not unright.
14Neither shall king or tyrant be able to set his face against thee for any whom thou hast punished.
15Forsomuch then as thou art righteous thyself, thou orderest all things righteously: thinking it not agreeable with thy power to condemn him that hath not deserved to be punished.
16For thy power is the beginning of righteousness, and because thou art the Lord of all, it maketh thee to be gracious unto all.
This is the day which the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad therein.
17For when men will not believe that thou art of a full power, thou shewest thy strength, and among them that know it thou makest their boldness manifest.
18But thou, mastering thy power, judgest with equity, and orderest us with great favour: for thou mayest use power when thou wilt.
19But by such works hast thou taught thy people that the just man should be merciful, and hast made thy children to be of a good hope that thou givest repentance for sins.
20For if thou didst punish the enemies of thy children, and the condemned to death, with such deliberation, giving them time and place, whereby they might be delivered from their malice:
21With how great circumspection didst thou judge thine own sons, unto whose fathers thou hast sworn, and made covenants of good promises?
22Therefore, whereas thou dost chasten us, thou scourgest our enemies a thousand times more, to the intent that, when we judge, we should carefully think of thy goodness, and when we ourselves are judged, we should look for mercy.
23Wherefore, whereas men have lived dissolutely and unrighteously, thou hast tormented them with their own abominations.
24For they went astray very far in the ways of error, and held them for gods, which even among the beasts of their enemies were despised, being deceived, as children of no understanding.
25Therefore unto them, as to children without the use of reason, thou didst send a judgment to mock them.
26But they that would not be reformed by that correction, wherein he dallied with them, shall feel a judgment worthy of God.
27For, look, for what things they grudged, when they were punished, that is, for them whom they thought to be gods; [now] being punished in them, when they saw it, they acknowledged him to be the true God, whom before they denied to know: and therefore came extreme damnation upon them.
Blessed by the name of the Lord from henceforth and forever more.
Wisdom 13: Surely vain are all men by nature, who are ignorant of God, and could not out of the good things that are seen know him that is: neither by considering the works did they acknowledge the workmaster;
2But deemed either fire, or wind, or the swift air, or the circle of the stars, or the violent water, or the lights of heaven, to be the gods which govern the world.
3With whose beauty if they being delighted took them to be gods; let them know how much better the Lord of them is: for the first author of beauty hath created them.
4But if they were astonished at their power and virtue, let them understand by them, how much mightier he is that made them.
5For by the greatness and beauty of the creatures proportionably the maker of them is seen.
6But yet for this they are the less to be blamed: for they peradventure err, seeking God, and desirous to find him.
7For being conversant in his works they search him diligently, and believe their sight: because the things are beautiful that are seen.
8Howbeit neither are they to be pardoned.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning it is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Wisdom 13:9For if they were able to know so much, that they could aim at the world; how did they not sooner find out the Lord thereof?
10But miserable are they, and in dead things is their hope, who call them gods, which are the works of men’s hands, gold and silver, to shew art in, and resemblances of beasts, or a stone good for nothing, the work of an ancient hand.
11Now a carpenter that felleth timber, after he hath sawn down a tree meet for the purpose, and taken off all the bark skilfully round about, and hath wrought it handsomely, and made a vessel thereof fit for the service of man’s life;
12And after spending the refuse of his work to dress his meat, hath filled himself;
13And taking the very refuse among those which served to no use, being a crooked piece of wood, and full of knots, hath carved it diligently, when he had nothing else to do, and formed it by the skill of his understanding, and fashioned it to the image of a man;
14Or made it like some vile beast, laying it over with vermilion, and with paint colouring it red, and covering every spot therein;
15And when he had made a convenient room for it, set it in a wall, and made it fast with iron:
16For he provided for it that it might not fall, knowing that it was unable to help itself; for it is an image, and hath need of help:
17Then maketh he prayer for his goods, for his wife and children, and is not ashamed to speak to that which hath no life.
18For health he calleth upon that which is weak: for life prayeth to that which is dead; for aid humbly beseecheth that which hath least means to help: and for a good journey he asketh of that which cannot set a foot forward:
19And for gaining and getting, and for good success of his hands, asketh ability to do of him, that is most unable to do any thing.
Create in me a clean heart of God and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not from thy presence nor take thy Holy Spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation and by thy governing spirit establish me.
Wisdom 14:1Again, one preparing himself to sail, and about to pass through the raging waves, calleth upon a piece of wood more rotten than the vessel that carrieth him [an idol].
2For verily desire of gain devised that, and the workman built it by his skill.
3But thy providence, O Father, governeth it: for thou hast made a way in the sea, and a safe path in the waves;
4Shewing that thou canst save from all danger: yea, though a man went to sea without art.
5Nevertheless thou wouldest not that the works of thy wisdom should be idle, and therefore do men commit their lives to a small piece of wood, and passing the rough sea in a weak vessel are saved.
6For in the old time also, when the proud giants perished, the hope of the world governed by thy hand escaped in a weak vessel, and left to all ages a seed of generation.
7For blessed is the wood whereby righteousness cometh.
8But that which is made with hands is cursed, as well it, as he that made it: he, because he made it; and it, because, being corruptible, it was called god.
9For the ungodly and his ungodliness are both alike hateful unto God.
10For that which is made shall be punished together with him that made it.
Prayer: O give thanks to the Lord for He is good, for His mercy endures forever.
Wisdom 16:1Therefore by the like were they punished worthily, and by the multitude of beasts tormented.
2Instead of which punishment, dealing graciously with thine own people, thou preparedst for them meat of a strange taste, even quails to stir up their appetite:
3To the end that they, desiring food, might for the ugly sight of the beasts sent among them lothe even that, which they must needs desire; but these, suffering penury for a short space, might be made partakers of a strange taste.
4For it was requisite, that upon them exercising tyranny should come penury, which they could not avoid: but to these it should only be shewed how their enemies were tormented.
5For when the horrible fierceness of beasts came upon these, and they perished with the stings of crooked serpents, thy wrath endured not for ever:
6But they were troubled for a small season, that they might be admonished, having a sign of salvation, to put them in remembrance of the commandment of thy law.
7For he that turned himself toward it was not saved by the thing that he saw, but by thee, that art the Saviour of all.
8And in this thou madest thine enemies confess, that it is thou who deliverest from all evil:
9For them the bitings of grasshoppers and flies killed, neither was there found any remedy for their life: for they were worthy to be punished by such.
10But thy sons not the very teeth of venomous dragons overcame: for thy mercy was ever by them, and healed them.
11For they were pricked, that they should remember thy words; and were quickly saved, that not falling into deep forgetfulness, they might be continually mindful of thy goodness.
12For it was neither herb, nor mollifying plaister, that restored them to health: but thy word, O Lord, which healeth all things.
13For thou hast power of life and death: thou leadest to the gates of hell, and bringest up again.
14A man indeed killeth through his malice: and the spirit, when it is gone forth, returneth not; neither the soul received up cometh again.
15But it is not possible to escape thine hand.
I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.
From St. Patrick’s ‘Breastplate’
Wisdom16: 16For the ungodly, that denied to know thee, were scourged by the strength of thine arm: with strange rains, hails, and showers, were they persecuted, that they could not avoid, and through fire were they consumed.
17For, which is most to be wondered at, the fire had more force in the water, that quencheth all things: for the world fighteth for the righteous.
18For sometime the flame was mitigated, that it might not burn up the beasts that were sent against the ungodly; but themselves might see and perceive that they were persecuted with the judgment of God.
19And at another time it burneth even in the midst of water above the power of fire, that it might destroy the fruits of an unjust land.
20Instead whereof thou feddest thine own people with angels’ food, and didst send them from heaven bread prepared without their labour, able to content every man’s delight, and agreeing to every taste.
21For thy sustenance declared thy sweetness unto thy children, and serving to the appetite of the eater, tempered itself to every man’s liking.
22But snow and ice endured the fire, and melted not, that they might know that fire burning in the hail, and sparkling in the rain, did destroy the fruits of the enemies.
23But this again did even forget his own strength, that the righteous might be nourished.
24For the creature that serveth thee, who art the Maker increaseth his strength against the unrighteous for their punishment, and abateth his strength for the benefit of such as put their trust in thee.
25Therefore even then was it altered into all fashions, and was obedient to thy grace, that nourisheth all things, according to the desire of them that had need:
26That thy children, O Lord, whom thou lovest, might know, that it is not the growing of fruits that nourisheth man: but that it is thy word, which preserveth them that put their trust in thee.
27For that which was not destroyed of the fire, being warmed with a little sunbeam, soon melted away:
28That it might be known, that we must prevent the sun to give thee thanks, and at the dayspring pray unto thee.
29For the hope of the unthankful shall melt away as the winter’s hoar frost, and shall run away as unprofitable water.
We praise Thee, we bless Thee, we worship Thee, we glorify Thee, we give thanks to Thee for thy great glory.