Tag: watch and pray

Avoid temptation through prayer!

Scripture reading for February 5th:  Matthew 26, Psalm 26, Proverbs 26

Key Scriptures:  Matthew 26:39-43 “And going a little farther He fell on His face and prayed, saying “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.”  And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping.  And He said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with Me one hour?  Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation.  The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”  Again for the second time He prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, Your will be done.”  And again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy.”

Jesus was preparing for the most difficult part of His mission here on earth.  He faced the time when He must lay down His own life for those He loved as well as for sinners in all the world.  He drew aside with His trusted disciples to pray; Judas had already left to betray Him for a bribe. He asked them to watch and pray with Him, but their eyes were heavy and they fell asleep.  It would be prayer that kept Jesus from temptation and His followers must learn from Him.

Faith confession:  Jesus, I am weak in my flesh and need Your faithful example and the sacrifice of Your life to cover my weakness.  Empower me through the Holy Spirit and to watch and pray and avoid temptation.

Psalm 26:9-11 “Do not sweep my soul away with sinners, nor my life with bloodthirsty men, in whose hands are evil devices and whose right hands are full of bribes.  But as for me, I shall walk in my integrity; redeem me, and be gracious to me.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thankful for sacrificial love!

Scripture reading for May 12th:  Esther 3-7

Key Scriptures: Esther 4:15-16 “Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai: “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa and fast for me.  Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day.  I and my maids will fast as you do.  When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law.  And if I perish, I perish.””   

Queen Esther learned from her uncle Mordecai that Haman had devised a plot to exterminate all Jews from Persia.  Her uncle urged her to go to the king and ask for mercy.  This was against the law and culture of that country.  So Esther asked for backing through prayer and fasting and set a time when she would act, even if it cost her life!

Thankful for sacrificial love:  Jesus Christ knew that His prayers and intercession would result in His death on the cross.  He asked the disciples to watch and pray!  “On reaching the place, He said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.”  He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if You are willing, take this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” (Luke 22:40-42)

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“Could you not keep watch one hour?”

Scripture reading for February 27th:  Mark 14

Following the Last Supper, Jesus and the remaining eleven disciples went out to the Mount of Olives.  They went to spend the night with Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.   The name of this garden indicated it was an ‘olive press’ where oil was squeezed from the olives grown there.  It would be the place where Jesus sweat great drops of blood as He wrestled with fulfilling the will of God.

Prior to coming there, Jesus had prophesied, “You will all fall away, for it is written: ‘I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’ But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”  (Mark 14:27-28)  Peter had protested that he would remain faithful, no matter what the others might do.  Jesus told him plainly that he, too, would deny Him three times before the rooster crowed.

Jesus asked His disciples to sit with Him while He prayed.  He took Peter, James and John and made a special request of them.  “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” He said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.”  (Mark 14:34)   Jesus prayed, “Abba, Father,” He said, “everything is possible for You.  Take this cup from Me.  Yet not what I will, but what You will.”   (Mark 14:36)   When Jesus returned to where they were, He found these close followers sleeping.  He particularly spoke to Peter, “Could you not keep watch for one hour?  Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.  the spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”  (Mark 14:37-38)

Prayer is a wrestling match with our flesh.  One of our greatest needs is to watch and pray each day.  Jesus is coming again!  Depend on the Holy Spirit to help you to pray!

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Christ’s eternal Word!

Scripture reading for October 28th: Luke 19-21

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away.”  “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness, and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap.  For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth.  Be always on the watch, and pray that you will be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:33-36

According to Scripture, there is nothing in this world that is permanent and lasting except the Word of God.  Everything else is decaying or passing away.  Even our own bodies are decaying and changing. (2nd Corinthians 4:16a)  We are born with a sentence of death because of sin.  This world is groaning and in it’s present state will ultimately pass away.

But I am encouraged as I read the Word of God that there is something permanent that I can hang on to!  God’s Word is permanent and eternal.  What God has written for us is ultimate truth and reality!  We can be certain of it!  We can build our lives on it!  We can tell our children about it and pass it on to our friends!

Jesus warned His followers to be careful because of these eternal truths.  Heaven and earth would pass away one day.  It would come upon those living on the earth suddenly, like a trap catching an unsuspecting animal.  (Luke 21:34)  Jesus encouraged His followers to be watchful and in prayer.  There would be many who would be overcome with a reckless attitude.  Some would be drunken and unable to rouse themselves.  Others would allow the fears and worries of life to consume them and they would not be prepared for that day.

Those who are watching and praying would be able to stand before the Son of Man.  They would be trusting in His grace and be ready to meet Him.  Let’s be certain today that we are really believing what Jesus taught.  A day is coming when the heavens and earth will pass away!  His Word will never pass away!  It will anchor your life in the coming storm!

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