Daily Devotion and Prayer for March 4th, 2024

+ DAILY PRAYER +

Besieged Samaria Resorts to Cannibalism It happened after this that Ben-Hadad king of Aram assembled all of his army and marched up and laid siege against Samaria. 25 There was a great famine in Samaria, and behold, a siege was against it, until the head of a donkey went for eighty shekels of silver, and one fourth of the measure of the dung of doves went for five shekels of silver. 26 It happened that the king of Israel was crossing over on the wall, and a woman called out to him, saying, “Help, my lord the king!” 27 He said, “No, let Yahweh help you….

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

     Hear my prayer, O Lord; give ear to my pleas for mercy!

     In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness! 

     Evening and morning and at noon I utter my complaint and moan,

     and he hears my voice. 

     Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you;

     He will never permit the righteous to be moved. 

Psalm 2:1-6,10-12

1  Why do the nations rage

and the peoples plot in vain? 

2  The kings of the earth set themselves,

and the rulers take counsel together,

against the LORD and against his Anointed, saying, 

3  “Let us burst their bonds apart

and cast away their cords from us.” 

4  He who sits in the heavens laughs;

the Lord holds them in derision. 

5  Then he will speak to them in his wrath,

and terrify them in his fury, saying, 

6  “As for me, I have set my King on Zion,

my holy hill.” 

10  Now therefore, O kings, be wise;

be warned, O rulers of the earth. 

11  Serve the LORD with fear,

and rejoice with trembling. 

12  Kiss the Son, lest he be angry,

and you perish in the way,

for his wrath is quickly kindled.

Blessed are all who take refuge in him. 

Reading for Monday March 4th      2 Kings 6:24-7:20

Besieged Samaria Resorts to Cannibalism

24 It happened after this that Ben-Hadad king of Aram assembled all of his army and marched up and laid siege against Samaria. 25 There was a great famine in Samaria, and behold, a siege was against it, until the head of a donkey went for eighty shekels of silver, and one fourth of the measure of the dung of doves went for five shekels of silver. 26 It happened that the king of Israel was crossing over on the wall, and a woman called out to him, saying, “Help, my lord the king!” 27 He said, “No, let Yahweh help you. ?How? can I save you? From the threshing floor or from the wine press?” 28 The king said to her, “?What is the problem??” Then the woman said, “This woman said to me, ‘Give me your son, and let us eat him today, then tomorrow we will eat my son.’ 29 So we cooked my son and ate him, and I said to her the next day, ‘Give your son that we may eat him.’ But she had hidden her son.” 30 It happened that when the king heard the words of the woman, he tore his clothes. Now he had been walking on the wall, and the people saw, and behold, sackcloth was over his flesh underneath. 31 Then he said, “May God do to me and thus may he add, if the head of Elisha the son of Shaphat remains on him today!” 32 Now Elisha was sitting in his house and the elders were sitting with him, and the king dispatched a man from before him, but before the messenger came to him, he said to the elders, “Did you see that this son of a murderer has sent to remove my head? Look, when the messenger comes, close the door; and you must ?hold the door closed against him?. Is not the sound of the feet of his master behind him?” 33 While he was still speaking with them, suddenly the messenger was coming down to him, and he said, “Look this trouble is from Yahweh. Why should I wait for Yahweh any longer?”

Elisha Prophesies Hope for Relief

7 Elisha said, “Hear the word of Yahweh: ‘Thus says Yahweh, “At this time tomorrow a seah of wheat bread flour will sell for a shekel, and two seahs of barley for a shekel in the gate of Samaria.’ ” Then the officer ?on whom the king relied? answered the man of God and said, “Look, even if Yahweh is making windows in heaven, could this thing happen?” And he said, “Look, you will be seeing it with your eyes, but you shall not eat from it there.”

Four Lepers Report the Departure of the Arameans

Now four men who had a skin disease were at the entrance of the gate, and they said ?to each other?, “Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, ‘Let us go into the city,’ the famine is in the city, and we shall die there; but if we sit here, we shall die. So then, come, let us fall into the camp of the Arameans. If they let us live, we shall live; but if they kill us, then we shall die.” So they got up at dusk to go to the camp of the Arameans. They went up to the edge of the camp of the Arameans, and look, there was no man there! Now the Lord had caused the camp of the Arameans to hear the sound of chariots, the sound of horses, and the sound of a great army. So they said ?to one another?, “Look, the king of Israel has hired the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Egypt to come against us!” So they got up and fled at dusk and left their tents, their horses, their donkeys, and the camp as it was, and they fled for their lives. When these who had the skin disease came to the edge of the camp, they went into a certain tent and they ate, drank, and took from there silver and gold and clothes. Then they went and hid them, then returned and came to another tent, and they took from there and went and hid them.

Then they said ?to one another?, “We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news! If we are silent and wait until the light of morning, ?we will be punished?. So then, come, let us go and tell the house of the king.” 10 When they came, they called to the gatekeepers of the city and told them, saying, “We came to the camp of the Arameans, and behold, there was no man or the voice of a man there! Only the horses and the donkeys were tied up, and the tents were left as they were.” 11 Then the gatekeepers called and told it inside the house of the king. 12 The king got up in the night and said to his servants, “Please let me tell you what the Arameans have done to us. The Arameans know that we are hungry, so they went out from the camp to hide in the field, saying, ‘When they go out from the city, we shall seize them alive and go into the city.’ ” 13 Then one of his servants replied and said, “Please let them take five of the remaining horses that remain in the city; behold, they are like all of the multitude of Israel that remain in it; they are like all the multitude of Israel who have perished. Let us send and see.” 14 So he took two charioteer horsemen, and the king sent after the camp of the Arameans, saying, “Go, find out,” 15 and they went after them to the Jordan. Look, all of the way was littered with clothes and equipment which the Arameans had thrown away in their haste. Then the messengers returned and told the king.

Prophecy Fulfilled

16 So the people went out and plundered the camp of the Arameans. A seah of wheat flour went for a shekel and two seahs of barley went for a shekel according to the word of Yahweh. 17 Then the king appointed the officer he was depending on over the gate, but the people trampled him and he died, according to that which the man of God had said, which he spoke when the king came down to him. 18 It happened as the man of God spoke to the king, saying, “Two seahs of barley shall be sold for a shekel and a seah of wheat flour for a shekel at this time tomorrow in the gate of Samaria.” 19 Then the officer had replied to the man of God and said, “Look, even if Yahweh is opening the windows in heaven, could this thing happen?” And he had said, “Look you are about to see it with your eyes, but you will not eat from it.” 20 So it had happened to him; the people trampled him in the gate and he died.

Lord’s Prayer

Daily Prayer

   Lord Jesus Christ, You raised Lazarus from the dead, giving us a glimpse of Your glorious resurrection, where You showed us what we will someday be and what we already are now through the waters of Holy Baptism.  Even in the darkest hours of our lives, let the light of Your resurrection shine with the brightness of Your glory; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Concluding Prayer

    Heavenly Father, send Your Holy Spirit into our hearts to direct and rule us according to Your will, to comfort us in all our afflictions, to defend us from all error, and to lead us into all truth; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.