Posts Tagged ‘ Prayer ’

VerseD: James 5:16

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

James 5:16, ESV

We don’t confess sins to gossip or hold something over others. Instead, we confess to begin healing and show we believe God can heal and forgive.

Sermon on the Mount study notes – Matthew 5:32-37

I have started a small group series on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7). I am sharing my notes in case anyone else wants to use them with their group. [Reminder that these are only notes!]

Sermon on the Mount – Part 8

Matthew 5:1-2:
Jesus wants to teach the crowds: Who are they? Jewish disciples: People who understand the
Scriptures (at least to a point). Notice from 7:28 the crowds still came along, but this teaching is for His disciples.

What does “blessed” mean?
Based on the first twelve verses, blessed means realizing our own wretchedness and need for a Savior. In other words, it is becoming/being a Christian. (A focus on why we’re blessed from 5:3-11)

[Jesus always takes us deeper]

What is an oath?
What was discussed last time?
• Lust and Divorce
• What are the most important promises we make in this life?
o Faith in Christ
o Marriage

Matthew 5:33:
What is Jesus saying?
• Once again, “an archaic saying”
o Said of old means: The Old Testament, specifically the Torah, more specifically Leviticus 19:11-12
▪ Essentially a rehashing of the 10 Commandments, but deeper
• Is He saying “Don’t cuss”?
o No, but also a good idea. Look back at vv. 21-22 – words spoken in anger
▪ OMG
▪ “I swear [to God], if you …”
o It becomes an issue of “Lord’s name in vain” then, as well
• Based on Lev. 19, don’t drag God into your lying and false promises
But what else is He saying?

Matthew 5:34-37:
What is Jesus saying?
Did Jesus abolish this law?
[Not exactly, but He also says “Just do it. Say you will, and then do.”]
• In other words, do not make oaths:
o That drag God into your failures or make your deeds seem good (Matthew 12:22-32)
o Based on Creation
o Based on your own abilities – James 4:13-17
• James 5:12 – Jesus’ brother reiterates “Let your yes be yes and your no be no.
o Notice the context: James 5:7-16
▪ He reiterates that we will suffer for Christ.
▪ Don’t grumble/complain/get angry
• We remember Christ is coming soon
• Do we really believe Christ is coming soon (swear to God), or do people see us squabbling and
assume we doubt His return?
▪ Actually pray for people when you say you will! (This keeps coming up in these lessons)
▪ Confess sins
• Do we really believe God has forgiven us, or do people see us hold sins against each other and
assume we doubt His forgiveness?

Are all oaths/promises bad?

Not necessarily:

  • Intent matters:
    • Do you promise beyond ability? Then oaths and promises are stupid.
    • “As much as I can … if the Lord wills …”
  • It would rule out … covenants!
    • Remember: God swore by Himself with Abraham (Hebrews 6:13-14)
    • Covenants can be one-sided or two-sided (yes, sometimes more), but are commitments/promises between parties to fulfill obligations
  • Oaths/Promises can display sincerity (i.e. marriages, court trials, desperate pleas)

VerseD: Romans 12:12

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.

Romans 12:12, ESV

Show others the joy found in Christ in all circumstances, even being lovingly patient when attacked for our faith, praying continually.

This is one of the ways others see the Gospel.

VerseD: Matthew 9:37-38

Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

Matthew 9:37‭-‬38, ESV

Prayer for the pastors, missionaries, and evangelists of Christ is always welcomed and necessary.

Pray also that your heart may yearn to share the Word and help reap the harvest of saved souls.

VerseD: James 5:13

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.

James 5:13, ESV

We should pray in all circumstances, knowing God is near the brokenhearted, and He celebrates with us as we worship Him.

VerseD: Matthew 7:8

For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.

Matthew 7:8, ESV

God is first and foremost concerned with His glory and the salvation of our souls. Therefore, may not grant every request we make. He gives salvation, forgiveness, mercy, grace, and wisdom in abundance (and He does like to give us other things, as well.)

VerseD: Matthew 6:7-8

“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”

Matthew 6:7‭-‬8, ESV

God is in control.

He knows our needs. He knows how to help us.

He also likes when we reach for Him, so ask for Him and His righteousness help in all circumstances.

VerseD: Mark 11:24

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

Mark 11:24, ESV

As we seek God’s will and are conformed more to the image of Christ, we will want the things God wants. Everything we ask for will be what God wants.

VerseD: John 15:7

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

John 15:7, ESV

Our Lord wants give us good things, and as we seek His will He answers yes and gives more and more. Especially of those things go that conform us to Jesus.

VerseD: Hebrews 4:16

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Hebrews 4:16, ESV

We know we have a God who completely understands us, because He became and lived as one of us, without sin, and died on our behalf and rise again to glory.

So we know He listens when we call, and we can ask anything anytime without fear or shame.