The One True God

MAY 31

MATTHEW 6:8_Be ye not therefore like unto them…

Jesus doesn’t want His disciples to pray like the babbling heathen. For all their crying and cutting themselves, the priests in I Kings 18 could get nothing from Baal. Nothing. And there were 450 priests calling on him!

The contest between God and Baal was that the true god would set fire to the offered sacrifice, with no help from man. Before Elijah even begins to pray, he gives God an opportunity to show His power. As said, Baal had failed. Elijah pours four barrels of water on his wood, and he does it three times. Then Elijah prays. Elijah alone. No crowd shouting and cutting. Elijah prays to the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel (Jacob). 

Carefully notice Elijah’s prayer. He never asks God to send fire. He asks three things. 1-That God make it known He is the God of Israel, not Baal. 2-That God make it known Elijah is the true servant of God, and whatever Elijah does comes from God. 3-That the Israelites return to worship the One True God.

This is real prayer, from a true believer, to the true God. The results were amazing.39 And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God.”                                                                                  

PRAYER

Holy LORD, Let my prayers cause You to be known as the One True God. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ loves true prayers that honor God—I do too!

Can Your Prayers Be Wrong?

MAY 30

MATTHEW 6:7_for they think they shall be heard for their much speaking.

Can you pray wrong? Absolutely. James 4:3 (KJV), “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”

You can pray and never receive when you ask for something which will be harmful to your character. You may think of lust as sexual, but you can lust for clothes, cars, homes, gadgets, and many kinds of things. It isn’t wrong to pray for needs or even for wants. It’s what we’ve learned over and over – the condition of the heart. The heart is the center of lust and of righteousness.

God, who reads the heart, knows which reigns. The one that reigns produces the prayers

In this verse, Jesus refers to praying to idols and false gods. Psalm 115:4-8 (KJV), “Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat. They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them.”

Idol worshipers must think if they babble enough they will be heard. The problem with that is idols “have ears but they hear not.”

One of the best stories on idols and those who worship them is found in I Kings 18. Read this powerful, and somewhat humorous, account of God’s prophet Elijah, wicked King Ahab, Queen Jezebel, the false god Baal, and Baal’s priests.

Learn what happens when the priests call on Baal, and Elijah calls on God.

PRAYER

True God, Please show me when I am praying selfish prayers. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ knows a destructive prayer—He does not answer!                                           

Keep Praying!

MAY 28

MATTHEW 6:7_use not vain repetitions…

Vain repetitions means to automatically repeat phrases with no heart felt meaning. This does not mean you shouldn’t pray a certain prayer more than one time, or join in unity to pray something like the Lord’s Prayer. There is power in unified prayer. The key is whether the group is unified in heart before Holy God. Matthew 18:20 (KJV), “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” I believe God loves to hear unified prayer. 

Neither does this mean that if you have been fervent in prayer but have not received an answer you should stop praying. Luke 18:3-7 (KJV), “And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him [the judge], saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming [emphasis mine] she weary me. And the Lord said, ‘Hear what the unjust judge saith. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?”

This judge didn’t even believe in God. But he did what was right for the widow, because he grew weary of her continual asking.

Jesus says God will do much better than people – keep praying!

PRAYER

Holy Jesus, Praise You that You never grow weary of me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                          

Christ never grows weary of my prayers—He hears me! 

God Is Pleased

MAY 27

MATTHEW 6:7_But when ye pray…

Jesus really does not make prayer an option. He says when you pray, not if you pray. Jesus expects prayer to be a basic part of your life.

Everything Jesus taught is a part of who He is. If you have a goal to gain wisdom, understanding, and knowledge from Jesus’ teaching, you need a relationship. A relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost requires a prayer life. A prayer life requires time.

Set a time of day that works best for you and commit yourself to prayer. Also, set a place that is best for your closet and talk out loud. This does not have to be a literal closet – but there’s nothing wrong with that. 

When you are serious about discipleship, you will be serious about prayer. Every time you pray, God is pleased. Along with regular committed prayer time, pray throughout the day. Lift up prayers for your family, friends, church, government leaders, and country – don’t forget to pray for those who hate you.  

Philippians 4:6-7 (KJV), “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

PRAYER

God of Peace, Please teach me when to pray. Give me a heart full of thanksgiving as I make my requests to You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ is true peace—He will give it to me!

The Depths of Your Heart

MAY 25

MATTHEW 6:6_and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret…

Jesus says the Father is in the closet with you.  When He says the Father seeth in secret He means more than vision. God reads your soul. He sees everything in your mind and thoughts. God sees deeply – into the very depths of your heart. He knows if there is room for Him in that depth, or if it is consumed with you.

God also knows if your desire is to replace self with the Savior. He can help you with that.

God’s desire is for you to bring all your emotions of pain, heartbreak, fear, anger, and unforgiveness to Him in prayer. If you can trust God is with you in the closet, you will begin to trust He is with you anywhere. The more you trust in God’s presence, the more confident you will grow in your relationship with Him. 

Listening is every bit as important to prayer time as talking. Remember that falling in love sequence? If you do all the talking, and never any listening, then you will not know your loved one at all. It’s difficult to truly love someone you don’t know.

The more you hear God, the more you become salt and light.

PRAYER

God Who Speaks, Please speak to my heart, and help me trust You are always with me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ is with me—I want to be with Him!