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Note that for the most part, it appears the Lord performed His works and spoke His words by the power of God the Father through the power of the Holy Spirit whom the Father had given Him. It was the Father working through Jesus, the man. Rather we find Him retiring to pray. This is clear in Mark and Luke The actual prayer of Christ is not given, only the fact of His dependence, thanksgiving, and confidence that His prayer had been heard.

The words of verses 41 and 42 imply, however, that not only did He pray to the Father, but that He wanted all those standing around to know it as well that they might learn the secret of dependence. This teaches us that when performing miracles, though not always heard by men, Jesus the man was praying in dependence upon the Father from the standpoint of His humanity. Think of Jesus Christ.

He was the Son of God, God incarnate, the perfect man and the absolute Creator God who also as the God-man adequately and continuously fulfilled every expectation of God for man. He always pleased the Father. Now, thinking of Him as such, ask yourself this question. How much did He personally, as man, contribute to His mighty works, deeds, and ministry? And how did that come about? Through prayerful dependence on the Father! When we work, we work. When we pray, the Father works.

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So out of this conscious and constant sense of need, there arose a continuing attitude of prayer: a continual expectation in the Lord Jesus that if anything was to be done, the Father must do it both by way of initiative, and wisdom, and power. Indeed, prayer according to the pattern of the Lord Jesus is to be a vital goal of true disciples.

What was the request posed by the unnamed disciple? The how aspect is included by Christ in His answer in Luke And who is adequate for these things? In John , note the relationship to prayer mentioned in verses and the works we, as disciples, are to do in verse There is no activity in the life of a believer which does not require a prayerful attitude—a prayerful dependence on and an expectation that God is at work and will work according to His purposes and leading.

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In ourselves we can do nothing. What was Peter thinking in this passage? We have been fishing these waters for years. Besides, Lord, we fished these waters all night and we know the fish are simply not biting now. Biblical Christianity is never a matter of living by who and what we are—our insight, our background, our experience, our training, our giftedness, etc.

But such only happens when we live by intimate prayerful dependence upon the Father through a life of prayer, a life of praying without ceasing, and a life devoted to special times of prayer alone with the Father and His Son in the power of the Spirit. Your kingdom come. And lead us not into temptation.

This is an excellent passage in teaching new believers about prayer because it covers a number of categories which are important to prayer. It was a model designed by our Lord to show the nature of prayer and what prayer should consist of by way of content. There is nothing wrong, of course, with reading or reciting it together as we would any passage of Scripture for a certain focus or emphasis or as a reminder of truth. I am convinced, however, it was never meant to be simply recited as a prayer to God in place of personal prayer poured out to God from the heart.

This is no accident. First, we start with God and then we go to ourselves. Here is an important principle in all worship of which prayer is but one mode and means. In prayer, as in everything, our Lord teaches us to put God first. Because this puts everything in the right perspective, it gives us the right viewpoint about life, one that sees beyond our own very limited scope. This is important so that we might genuinely focus our hearts and minds on the who and what of God, that we might seek first the rule and righteousness of God, and that we might walk with Him in obedience and under His enablement, direction, and protection.

As a tear magnifies sorrow and as laughter magnifies joy, so prayer a form of worship wherein we count on the worth of God must first magnify the Lord if our prayers are to have the proper result in our lives—confidence, faith, and direction into the will of God. This kind of praying glorifies the Lord and demonstrates our desire for relationship with God, along with obedience.

It is comforting to our hearts because it brings God into our vision along with His purposes. This first emphasis by our Lord exposes what is often a fatal weakness in our own prayers. We need to focus on the Lord first to get the perspective of Jeremiah We need the praise and focus of God in Psalm before the petitions of Psalm It is significant, I believe, that no commands are given as to time or how often.


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Because prayer is more than a mere religious routine we go through as it is in some religions in which worshippers recite certain words and bow in a certain direction specified times of the day. Scheduled prayer is certainly scriptural and a godly pattern to have as with Daniel Dan.

Two things about this cry of the psalmist: First, his entreaty expresses our need. We need the Lord and we need to drink from His fountain of life through the Word and prayer—our means of hearing Him and responding to Him. But second, his entreaty also expresses what should be a recognized reality in each of us.

As the psalmist, we should long to communicate with our God. Prayer is to be an expression of our longing for intimacy with God and to enter into His strength and will. Prayer becomes one of the means by which we draw near to the Lord and His sufficiency and submit to Him.

Legw reminds us of our need to carefully choose our words as opposed to praying as mere religious rote without careful thought. It should remind us of the conversational nature of our prayer or communication with God. As an iterative present it describes an event which is, as a command, to occur repeatedly, over and over again. The idea is when you pray, consistently pray in the following manner or example, but not repetitiously by rote, reciting these words as a mere repeated ritual, the problem Jesus addressed earlier in Matthew To view this as a prayer to be repetitiously repeated would be in conflict with the previous command.

Prayer is the thoughtful exercise of the heart and the mind through which we seek to draw near to God in worship and dependence on Him because of who He is as our sovereign God and support. This command demonstrates the need of the new birth or spiritual regeneration.

Scripture teaches us that prayer, other than the call to know God or for salvation, is really only applicable to believers in Jesus Christ who are brought into a relationship with God as His children through faith in Jesus Christ. This is accomplished by the new birth, the regenerating work of the Spirit of God cf. John ; ; John ; ; Eph. True, we should exalt the Lord in our prayers through praise, adoration, and thanksgiving for His person, His essence, and His works in creation, history, and salvation.

Our need, however, is to come to God as a child and talk with Him as our Father Ps. To pray to God as our Father means recognizing that He is a person who is intimately concerned about us more than we could possibly be concerned about ourselves. He is not a blind or impersonal force.

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Thus it emphasizes the ease and willingness with which we should come into His presence, boldly, with the confidence of a child who knows he or she is loved with an unconditional love Heb. By ease, however, I do not mean disrespectfully and without regard to His holiness and majesty or without concern about sin in our lives. We dare not ignore our responsibility to deal with our sin by confession Ps. Rather, by ease, I mean an awareness of this fatherly kind of care, the love of God, and our provision and access through the finished work of Christ.

In Scripture, much more so than today, names represent who people are and what they represent—their reputation. How we act affects His name and reputation before others. This means opening up my life and all its closets to His work of making me like His Son. Ephesians that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man; 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fulness of God.

It demonstrates a belief and recognition that this world is a fallen world that has rejected its Creator Rom. It means living in view of the blessed hope as sojourners who love and pray for His kingdom Titus ; I Pet. It is a desire to fit into His plan no matter how small and in accord with what he is doing through the various trials, defeats, successes, provisions, and circumstances He brings.

This teaches us to pray as our Lord did when facing the cross. From death comes resurrection. In verse 4 the Lord deals with forgiveness and thus, the needs of the immaterial man, the soul and spirit. If you or I were giving these instructions we would probably have inverted the order to spiritual needs first and then we would turn to physical needs.

So, why this order? The Lord created our bodies—the body is important to the function of men. The body is not evil; it is a vehicle of service and of good. But this does not mean the physical man or the needs of the body are unimportant, that they are to be neglected, or that it is spiritual and more holy to neglect the body and to treat it carelessly.

The Lord may have used this order to deal a blow against some of the pagan ideas of his day and to some of the imbalances believers can so easily slip into—and always have.

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The Greeks regarded the body as evil and believed pure spirit was of greater value. Many rejected the idea of the resurrection because they believed all matter to be evil. They either tortured it in various forms of asceticism, or misused it in licentiousness.

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This is why some of the Greeks at Corinth did not want to believe in the resurrection and part of the reason why Paul wrote 1 Corinthians Concerning their attitude about the body and resurrection, Ryrie writes:. In general they believed in the immortality of the soul, but not the resurrection of the body. Even today many Christians take their bodies for granted.

In Philippians , the translation of the KJV could leave a wrong impression about the body. It reads:.


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Philippians Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself. This body is mortal and subject to age, disease, death and decay—so it needs special care if we are to maintain it as a useful tool of God.

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It reminds us that bodily discipline is profitable for a little while. It keeps the old machinery in good working order as long as it is being exercised and cared for properly on a daily basis. But of course, godliness is profitable both for now and for eternity. Man is a unity of body, soul and spirit.


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