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For they, being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth. Romans 10:3-4

The apostle Paul desired the salvation of his fellow Israelites but most sought to be righteous before God on the basis of their own keeping of God’s law and rejected the imputed righteousness God desired to give them through faith in Christ Jesus and His holy life and innocent sufferings and death in their stead.

Grant that I not trust in my own righteousness, O God, but in the perfect righteousness of Christ and in the atonement He made for my sins and the sins of the world. Amen.

[Scripture is quoted from the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21), copyright © 1994 by Deuel Enterprises, Inc.]

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As it is written: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense, and whosoever believeth in Him shall not be ashamed.” Romans 9:33

Summarizing the witness of Isaiah 8:14-15; 28:16 and Psalm 118:22, the Apostle Paul points out that Christ Jesus is a precious stone, the very cornerstone of God’s temple since He is our high priest and the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world and there is salvation in no other. Many stumble over Him in unbelief and fall from the faith, but those who trust in Jesus as the Messiah and Savior shall never be put to shame for, in Him and His cross, they have forgiveness for all their sins and life everlasting.

O gracious God, grant that I not stumble over Jesus and His cross but trust in Him as the Son of God and my crucified and risen Savior. Amen.

[Scripture is quoted from the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21), copyright © 1994 by Deuel Enterprises, Inc.]

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“Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root; they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit. Thou art near in their mouth, but far from their reins.” Jeremiah 12:2

The prophet here speaks of the wicked who were prospering in the land before God’s judgment fell upon them. God gave them life and blessings; yet, though they confessed God’s name with their mouths, their reins – their inward and true desires and passions – were far from the LORD. And how true this is today! People speak God’s name and call themselves Christians but their hearts are far from the Lord and His Word.

Forgive me, O Lord, for taking Your name on my lips when my heart is far from You. Grant me true repentance and faith in Your mercy for the sake of Your Son and my Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

[Scripture is quoted from the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21), copyright © 1994 by Deuel Enterprises, Inc.]

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“Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not hear them in the time that they cry unto Me for their trouble.” Jeremiah 11:14

Is there a time when we are to quit praying for people? Though we pray that all repent of their sins and look to Christ and His cross for pardon and forgiveness, there is a time when we cease praying that the impenitent and unbelieving would be spared from God’s judgments upon their sins. If they refuse to hear God’s words of warning and repent, we finally must turn them over to God’s righteous judgments and trust that God will deal with them in a way that is best.

Grant that we not reject Your Word, O LORD, but repent of our wicked and sinful ways and look to You for mercy in Christ Jesus. In His name, we pray. Amen.

[Scripture is quoted from the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21), Copyright © 1994 by Deuel Enterprises, Inc.]

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“Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name.” Psalm 86:11

Apart from the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, each of our hearts was united in the service of sin — we sought to go our own selfish ways. Having been brought to faith in Christ, we now have a new nature that loves God and desires to walk in accord with the truth of His Word but, in this life, we still have our old corrupt sinful nature. With the psalmist, we pray that God would unite our divided hearts to honor the name of our God and Savior in all we think, say, and do.

Unite my heart, O God, to love You, trust in You and honor You in all I think and do. I ask this for the sake of Jesus, my Savior. Amen.

[Scripture is quoted from the King James Version of the Bible.]

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