He who supposes that Jesus Christ only lived and died and rose again in order to provide justification and forgiveness of sins for His people, has yet much to learn.

―J.C. Ryle

Scripture: Psalm 98.8-9

Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.

Reflection: Grace Which Rises
By Augustine of Hippo (354-430 C.E.)

Observe heaven: everywhere on every side it covers the earth. Men sin beneath heaven: they do all evil deeds beneath the heaven; yet they are covered by the heaven. From heaven is light for the eyes, and air, and breath, and rain upon the earth for the sake of its fruits, and all mercy.

Take away the aid of heaven from the earth: it will fail at once. As then the protection of heaven abides upon the earth, so does the Lord’s protection abide upon them that fear Him. You fear God, His protection is above thee. But perhaps you are scourged, and believe that God has forsaken you. God has only forsaken you if the protection of heaven has forsaken the earth.

When sin is remitted, your sins fall, your grace rises; your sins are as it were on the decline, your grace which frees you on the rise. You should look to the rising, and turn away from the setting.

Turn away from your sins, turn unto the grace of God; when your sins fall, you rise and profit. This is the grace which rises unto us: both our sins fall forever, and grace abides forever.

Who but Christ has prepared His throne in heaven? He who descended and ascended, He who died, and rose from the dead, He who lifted up to heaven the manhood He had assumed, hath Himself prepared His throne in heaven.

The throne is the seat of the Judge: observe therefore you who hear, that “He has prepared His throne in heaven.… The kingdom is the Lord’s, and He shall be the Governor among the people. “And His kingdom shall rule over all.”

And why? God is the Judge. “In every place of His dominion: bless thou the Lord, O my soul!” From blessing we set out, to blessing let us return, in blessing let us reign.

Prayer: The Request for Presence 

“Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling; That I may go to the altar of God, to the God of my joy and gladness;* and on the harp I will give thanks to you, O God my God. —Psalm 43.3-4

– From The Divine Hours: Prayers for Summertime by Phyllis Tickle.

Full prayer available online and in print.

Today’s Readings
Deuteronomy 12 (Listen – 5:11)
Psalm 97-98 (Listen – 2:19)