Good-Versus-Evil

JUNE 19

MATTHEW 6:13_but deliver us from evil…

Because the world is full of evil does not mean good does not exist. Nor does it mean good does not prevail. Good prevails more than evil – it is just harder to see. Ultimately, it will prevail once and for all. In the meantime, you live with evil.

Every day is a good-versus-evil battle. The times when evil wins are difficult. Just to see some of the world’s evil on the News can be disturbing. It causes an oppressive spirit to hang heavy in your soul. You ask God how such things can happen. You wonder how humans reach such a level of degradation.

When there is evil in your personal life – you need hope.  

When you pray not to be led into temptation, add as Jesus did to be delivered from evil. The devil intends evil daily. That’s his intention. It does not mean he wins. God intends mercy daily. God holds all the cards. One card God holds which the devil can never get his hands on is found in Romans 8:28 (KJV), “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Get to know this verse and praise God for it. This is why good prevails more than evil. God can take the devil’s evil and cause good for His people. The times when evil wins a battle are not the end of the war. Your hope is in this verse.

Somewhere in the long run, God’s compassion and power will use pain to make you a better person!              

PRAYER

God of Hope, Please deliver me from evil. I know evil is in the world, but I know You are greater than the world. I praise Your power that helps me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ can make good from the devil’s evil – He does it for me!

The Slippery Slopes

JUNE 18

MATTHEW 6:13_into temptation…

Jesus says pray not to fall into temptation. What is temptation? A place where weaknesses have the upper hand. A slippery slope. A place where you are the controlled – not the controller. 

Everyone is vulnerable. It is easy to think you’re not. Why?  If you are a church-going, Bible-believing, Jesus-following person, you can’t be vulnerable, right?  Wrong! It is true all of those things give you the upper hand. The more your spirit grows, the stronger your resistance to temptation develops. But don’t think you can’t fall like everyone else.

If you get a bit cocky, let go of Jesus’ hand, and think you got this – prepare to go down. Jesus teaches to pray that you are not led into temptation. Praying keeps you focused on the power in you – is from Him!

Jesus knows your weaknesses and the devil’s strength. Be wise and follow His model way to pray, not to be led into temptation. Pray for the discernment to be alert to your weaknesses. Call out to the power of the Father to lead you away from the slippery slopes. Pray for help from the temptations which empower your specific weaknesses.         

PRAYER

Lord Jesus, Please help me become aware of my weaknesses and know the temptations which empower them. Direct my steps not to go there. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ knows my weaknesses—He will help me!

Traps Set

  JUNE 17

MATTHEW 6:13_And lead us not…

The word lead in this verse is translated to bring in or into. Part of your prayer life should include to ask for direction, or guidance.

Psalm 5:8, “Lead me, O Lord, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face.”

That’s one to pray! It not only asks to be led, but to be led by righteousness. Tell God specifically why you need Him to lead you – because there are enemies out there (the devil and his demons). 

Another Psalm to pray is Psalm 143:10 (KJV), “Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness.” This doesn’t need explaining. It’s all there (this verse showed up in the prayer on January 17).

Both of these Psalms express places you want to be. Places that cause you to feel closer to the Father and the Savior. Places of safety.

In Jesus’ model prayer He prays the reverse – lead us not. There are places out there that are not safe. The devil knows how to set traps. He wants to lead you to places you should not be.

These places are away from the Father and the Savior. The devil wants to lead you to places under his control.

Pray!

PRAYER

Righteous God, Lead me in Your righteousness. Make Your way straight before me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ knows where to lead me—I will follow!

My Debtors

JUNE 16

MATTHEW 6:12_as we forgive our debtors.

My debtors caused this prayer to turn around. It was fine for God to forgive my debts. Psalm 136 (KJV) says twenty-six times, “for his mercy endureth for ever.”

I feel comfortable with the fact that God forgives me. That helps me overcome lies the devil uses to deceive me – that I can never be forgiven. This vertical forgiveness is from a God of true love. Jeremiah 31:3 (KJV), “The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee [you and me] with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.”  Wow!

My debtors are those who have never paid things like:

A financial debt – money owed to me.

A verbal debt – a broken promise.

An emotional debt – harsh angry words which ripped apart every feeling of tenderness I ever possessed.

A trust debt – betrayal. 

Whatever the debt, it is still in my ledger. Before, my prayer life was only concerned with God’s ledger book – now He is meddling into mine.

The Holy Spirit says things to me like, “I’m ready to erase your debts recorded in My Vertical Ledger because you are not able to pay. But, I see all kinds of unerased debts in your Horizontal Ledger. Let Me teach you a solution.”  

PRAYER

Holy God, I want to have Your mercy that endures forever.  In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

 Christ erased my sins—He teaches me how to erase!

A Fly in the Ointment

  JUNE 15

MATTHEW 6:12_as we forgive our debtors.

When God pays your sin debt, the kicks you used to experience in sin begin to disappear. If they don’t, then in the words of the great Miss Clavel, “Something is not right!” (Madeline – Ludwig Bemelmans). You sin because it supplies some kind of satisfaction. It may be physical, emotional, or financial. When it no longer produces satisfaction (which is the nature of sin), you sink deeper and deeper into sin. The deeper, the harder to come out.  

When redeemed by the Savior, sin begins to lose its hold. There is no joy in sin for the saved. Just when things look good for the debtor, Jesus adds another piece to the pattern.

He lets a fly in the ointment!

Jesus’ prayer causes vertical forgiveness (from God to you) to be based on horizontal forgiveness (from you to your offenders). That means to ask God to forgive you in the way you forgive those who wrong you.

I declare! Jesus just won’t let you get by with anything. It takes a lot of love to hold people you love to accountability.

If you confess, repent, and ask God’s forgiveness, why should that have anything to do with those who wronged you? They need to do their own confessing.

This is more of those natural instincts of your hard heart.

The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth is your offenders and their confession is between them and God. You forgiving them is between you and God.

A clear sign you have been redeemed is you want to forgive. Old sins lose their grip and hard hearts soften!       

PRAYER

Great Redeemer, Thank You for not only saving me, but changing me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                               

Christ redeems me—He changes me!