MATTHEW 6:10_in earth, as it is in heaven.
If you think it is easy to pray, “not my will but Thine be done” – you’ve never really prayed it. In this same account of Gethsemane, we find in Luke 22:44 (KJV),“And being in an agony he [Jesus] prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.”
Praying for God’s will to be done caused the Holy Son of God to sweat blood!
During my time on earth I want the strength and faith to seek God’s will above my own. God’s will is always greater, and it is always full of love and mercy – although I may not see that until His will has been done. God’s will is always goodness and kindness toward people, and is founded on love.
In heaven, God’s will shall be done. I won’t have to be anxious about caving in to my own will. No wonder there will be lots of praising in heaven! Lots of hallelujah shouting! Lots of adoration worship! God’s will is done daily, hourly, and moment by moment. That’s reason to rejoice!
I couldn’t make it in this life without prayer. I need to talk with the Father. I need to pour out my heart before Him. I need to feel His comfort and reassurance in my uncertainty.
God’s will causes my light to shine.
Omnipotent God, Praise You that Your will is always better than mine. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ knows God’s will—His will make me shine!
MATTHEW 6:5_Verily, I say unto you, they have their reward.
Jesus says if you live life the world’s way, you will have the world’s rewards.
The prayers of the hypocrites do not go unrewarded. Perhaps they get the best seats in the synagogues. Perhaps they receive high positions of administration. Whatever their rewards, a very sad fact remains – the prayers of a self-glorifying hypocrite can never help the seeker find the Savior.
The hypocrite loses God’s reward. Nothing in life is worth that—no praise—no financial gain—no high position—no fame. The praise, money, position, fame, could be a way God chooses to reward you openly. They also could be how the world rewards you.
Jesus makes clear what the problem is with the hypocrites’ public prayers – to be seen of men. That changes everything. These are not prayers of communication between the potter and the clay. These are prayers of self-glory. They communicate, “What a good and pious person I am, everyone should be like me.”
Read this one more time – the world rewards with bondage, God rewards with freedom.
Holy Jesus, Teach me how to pray in private and in public. Teach me to know the difference. Place in my heart the desire to receive Your rewards, not the world’s. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s rewards give freedom—I want that!
MATTHEW 6:5_thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are for they love to pray in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men…
Oh my goodness! Here we go with the hypocrites again! And, they are back in the synagogues and the streets! Jesus doesn’t want the praying there any more than He wanted the alms giving there.
Don’t get confused about this – the devil would love to deceive you into believing that you should not pray out loud. If you are a part of a youth group that prays together – stay with it and pray together..
Praying out loud is a part of the salt and light process. Prayer encourages seekers who may be a part of your group. Helping the seekers find their way is what salt and light are meant to do.
When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead He prayed out loud. John 11:41-42 (KJV), “And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.”
There was a large crowd gathered to comfort the sisters of Lazarus. Jesus purposely prayed out loud. Any unbelievers in the group would know first, that Jesus was sent by God, and second, that God always hears prayer.
The result was the greatest miracle Jesus performed in His earthly life!
God of Heaven, Please let my prayers give attention to You, not me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s prayers were salt and light—mine should be too!
MATTHEW 6:2_Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.
Hypocrites. If anyone makes the Bible and the Christian faith look bad, it is they. If anyone can make a good act look bad, it is they. If anyone can make what should be an act of love turn into ego, it is they. If anyone can tip the scales so judgment outweighs mercy, it is they. If anyone can take a lie and cleverly disguise it as the truth, it is they.
Is it any wonder Jesus accepted the thieves, murderers, and morally impure over the religious hypocrites?
The former came to Jesus broken, bleeding captives seeking forgiveness and love. They came with a repentant heart. Covered His feet with their tears.
The latter came self-assured and confident of their lack of need for help. They came with an arrogant heart – saw themselves good.
Hypocrites love to sound the trumpet before their good deeds. They desire to bring glory to themselves.
They make sure they receive praise.
And the whole world needs to know!
Dear Jesus, Only You are worthy to receive glory, and honor, and blessing, forever and ever. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ alone is worthy of the world’s glory—I praise Him!
MATTHEW 6:1_otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
Back to rewards again. Jesus speaks a lot about rewards. He speaks of them as something to be desired, something to be honored, something to seek.
I have never found in the key to the treasure chest a time when Jesus speaks of rewards in a casual take-it-or-leave-it way.
Whether we know what the Father’s rewards are or not, we know Jesus places great value on them. Which sets an example for us.
When we study the Bible diligently with a seeking heart, we learn Jesus teaches specifically what causes not to receive the Father’s rewards. He does not speak favorably of any of these things.
Because Jesus loves us, and wants us to receive these rewards whether in this life or the next, Jesus warns. The rebellion in us does not respond well to warnings – someone telling us what to do.
When our hearts are transformed we realize there is love behind the warnings.
Just as specifically, Jesus teaches what causes us to receive the rewards.
Father God, Please change my rebellious heart to accept Your warnings. Teach me to see Your great love for me in each warning. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ wants me to receive rewards—I want to!