The Prayer of St. Patrick

Top of the morning to ya. Today is March, 17th which means that many all over the world will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. They will dress in green, go to parades, or mercilessly pinch others (for not wearing green)…all because of a man named Patrick. Now Patrick was a saint (not because of Catholic beatification) but because a biblical saint is actually a brother or sister in Christ. In fact, he was never canonized as a Roman Catholic saint.  But all believers in Christ are saints, that’s why Paul writes to the churches and calls the believers “saints”.

Anywho, Patrick was once a slave in Ireland who escaped but later returned as a cleric and Christian missionary in the 5th century. He is remembered for quite a few items of his life (some true such as reaching tribal clans of the Celtic Irish peoples) ( & others maybe myth, such as driving out all of the snakes of Ireland).  He was a great man of missionary vision, as well as a believer in prayer.  His famous prayer is truly remarkable in its passion and desire for Christ to be the supremacy of his life…this I would like to share with you.patrick_shamrock_0

“As I arise today,
may the strength of God pilot me,
the power of God uphold me,
the wisdom of God guide me.

May the eye of God look before me,
the ear of God hear me,
the word of God speak for me.

May the hand of God protect me,
the way of God lie before me,
the shield of God defend me,
the host of God save me.

May Christ shield me today.

Christ with me, Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
 Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
 Christ above me,
Christ on my right, Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit,
 Christ when I stand,

Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me, Christ in every eye that sees me,
 Christ in every ear that hears me.

Amen”

Powerful prayer of willing obedience & knowledge of God’s ultimate grace toward us.

Psalm 119: נ Nun

תהילים

נ Nun

Psalm 119: 105-112

105 Thy word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.

106 I have sworn and I will confirm it,
That I will keep Thy righteous ordinances.

107 I am exceedingly afflicted;
Revive me, O LORD, according to Thy word.

108 O accept the freewill offerings of my mouth, O LORD,
And teach me Thy ordinances.

109 My life is continually in my hand,
Yet I do not forget Thy law.

110 The wicked have laid a snare for me,
Yet I have not gone astray from Thy precepts.

111 I have inherited Thy testimonies forever,
For they are the joy of my heart.

112 I have inclined my heart to perform Thy statutes
Forever, even to the end.

[NASB 1977]

PSALM 119

Over 22 days (with a few Sabbath rests in the midst) it is my hope to soak in and meditate on Psalm 119.  This is the longest chapter of the Bible with 22 sections.  Each of the 22 sections is an acrostic in the original Hebrew language that alliterates each statement with one letter from the Hebrew Alphabet.  In reading through this Psalm, one can find the meditations of the heart, the movements of the hands, & the all surpassing Grace of God.

The psalmist declares in Nun (pronounced “noon”) the distinctive differences between light and darkness.  Some people perceive the Scriptures to cast a perception of the world as a dark and damnable place without hope.  Other people will try to describe the Bible as a place where anything goes and all the world is fairy tales and rainbows.  The psalmist is quick to make sure that the reader understands the plight of world that has both darkness and light as a stark reality.

I have seen dark days and I have also brought my life into dark days before.  This is a part of being a human being.  We are made in the image of God meaning that “we resemble God in certain respects without being equal with Him.  Man’s likeness to God is what truly distinguishes mankind from the rest of creation.  Man is a person with the power to think, feel, and decide.  He has the capacity for moral choices and spiritual growth or decline.” (KWSB Commentary).

You and I have the capacity to choose growth or decline…but we are still carriers of sin because of the fall of man.  We need the grace and truth of Jesus.  We need His light because He is the only one who can save. He is the only one who can redeem.

The psalmist declares those familiar Bible words (familiar if you are familiar with often used scriptures) in that God’s Word is a lamp to our feet, a light to our path.  Without God, we are afflicted and we need His revival (restoration) for our life to be brought into the light.  The outcome of His grace upon us is that the words of our mouth freely flowing and the meditations of our heart would be pleasing to God…all because a person knows God because of God’s grace.

Verse 109 is particularly stunning.  “My life is continually in my hand, yet I do no forget Thy law.”  God has given us the capacity, through His grace to choose to follow Him as the light or to choose the darkness of self.  God’s word is to be known by believers so that we will not forget that He is God…and that He is good.

By His Grace.  Through His Gospel.  For His Glory. light_in_the_darkness_by_benjamin75-d349bxq

“Religion operates on the principle ‘I obey–therefore I am accepted by God.’ But the operating principle of the gospel is ‘I am accepted by God through what Christ has done–therefore I obey.” -Tim Keller

“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” -The Apostle Peter, (1 Peter 2:9)