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Thursday, February 11, 2016

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"Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit," begins our gospel reading. Fresh from the Jordan River and the Holy Spirit descending like a dove, Jesus begins his public ministry and a new life born of his baptism. Immediately, this new life encounters some peril in the temptation to run away from the very Spirit which has called and sent Jesus into the world. But isn't baptism a gift? Isn't this supposed to be a life-giving, transforming, God-claiming experience? And yet, when the Spirit is active, the devil also takes special notice. So while we rejoice and pray for the Spirit's activity in our lives, we know that sometimes it means we must be alert and prepared to go against the forces of evil. We pray for the Spirit's protection and care as we encounter the perils of this world, yearning for God's mercy and presence in all we do.

Holy Spirit, guide our days and stay close to us when temptations challenge our faithfulness. Amen.

Krista Lind
Associate Dean of Student Resources and Candidacy, Luther Seminary
Master of Religious Education , 1997

Luke 4:1-13 (NRSV)

1 Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness,
2 where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing at all during those days, and when they were over, he was famished.
3 The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become a loaf of bread."
4 Jesus answered him, "It is written, "One does not live by bread alone.' "
5 Then the devil led him up and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world.
6 And the devil said to him, "To you I will give their glory and all this authority; for it has been given over to me, and I give it to anyone I please.
7 If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours."
8 Jesus answered him, "It is written, "Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.' "
9 Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here,
10 for it is written, "He will command his angels concerning you, to protect you,'
11 and "On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.' "
12 Jesus answered him, "It is said, "Do not put the Lord your God to the test.' "
13 When the devil had finished every test, he departed from him until an opportune time.

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.