Flesh and Spirit – Passage #4 Lesson 2
“Watch and PRAY so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Matthew 26:40-42 (in Context) Matthew 26 (Whole Chapter)
The gospel song says, “What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.”
Do you sincerely believe the words of this songwriter? Do you put all your thanks, praise, hope, fear, grief, all emotions, all hurts, everything in a prayer, a private talk, a consult, a deliberation, a conference, a parley, a conspiracy, a communion, do you think of it as a treat, do you negotiate, debate, argue, talk, call, ask advice of, turn to, plot, scheme, contrive, plan?… we could go on and on.
Believe it or not this is just what prayer allows us to do. In the first lesson we learned Psalms 55:22 says,
Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.
What does this say? WE MUST HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD. We must be close and intimate with his wants, desires, laws, precepts, doctrines, we must be just, upright, good, honest, worthy, exemplary, noble, right-minded, goodhearted…on and on.
The next verse in the psalm drives this home.
But you O God will bring down the wicked into the pit of corruption; bloodthirsty and deceitful men will not live out half their days. But as for me I trust in you.
What is trust? To believe, swear by, place confidence in, confide in, esteem, depend on, and expect help from, and on and on.
With that introduction let’s look at scripture references to PRAY.
Deuteronomy 4:1-10 says:
1 Hear now, O Israel, the decrees and laws I am about to teach you. Follow them so that you may live and may go in and take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your fathers, is giving you. 2Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the LORD your God that I give you.
3 You saw with your own eyes what the LORD did at Baal Peor. The LORD your God destroyed from among you everyone who followed the Baal of Peor,4but all of you who held fast to the LORD your God are still alive today.
5 See, I have taught you decrees and laws as the LORD my God commanded me, so that you may follow them in the land you are entering to take possession of it. 6Observe them carefully, for this will show your wisdom and understanding to the nations, who will hear about all these decrees and say, “Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.”7 What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him? 8 And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?
9 Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them.
This passage agrees very well with our introduction doesn’t it?
The Lord made a personal appearance to Solomon prior to the dedication of the Temple Solomon had built God expects humility when he is being approached.
11 When Solomon had finished the temple of the LORD and the royal palace, and had succeeded in carrying out all he had in mind to do in the temple of the LORD and in his own palace, 12the LORD appeared to him at night and said:
“I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for myself as a temple for sacrifices.
13 “When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, 14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
6 Therefore let everyone who is godly pray to you
while you may be found;
surely when the mighty waters rise,
they will not reach him.
The Note for this verse in the New International Version 1984 explains this verse nicely.
Though addressed to God as confession, it (The Psalm) is also intended for the ears of the worshipers. He (DAVID) admonishes them to “seek The Lord while he may be found… while he is near” (Isa 55:6) and not to foolishly provoke his withdrawal ─and the coming near of his heavy hand─ as David had done. A god who forgives is a God to whom one can trust and devote his life to, (see Psalm 130:4).
Godly People as talked about in this verse are people who are or should be devoted to God and Faithful to him.
Mighty waters in this verse is powerful imagery for threatening forces or circumstances, a primal mass of chaotic waters, likened to a many-headed monster of the deep…
Hence by association they were linked with anything that in human experience endangered or troubled that order.
I want to be respectful of your time so I am going to give you some portions of scripture you can flesh out on your own.
Mt. 5:44 …and pray for those who persecute you…
Mt. 6:5 and when you pray do not be like…
Mt.6:9 this then is how you should pray…
Lk 6:28 Pray for those who mistreat you
Jn 17:20 I pray also for those who will not believe
Ro 8:26 do not know what he should pray for
1TH 5:17 be joyful always and pray continually
Remember YOUR privilege to take EVERYTHING TO GOD IN PRAYER.