18 Eph. 1:16 Prayers Particulars part 18
Turning Pressure into Persistent Prayer
Activate in Making Continual Requests v.15-23
Captivate in a Mark of Perpetual celebration
Prayers Method v.16
Aggressive Cease not
Assertive making mention
Appealing in my prayers
We’ve looked at being aggressive in prayer, and being assertive in prayer and now I’d like to put the aggressive, assertive, and the appealing all together.
We see the three combined in Christ’s pleas in the Mount of Olives. It will take me a little to develop this thought, but I want to cover this area of ceasing not, making mention, and praying with pleading in insistent appealing.
Christ’s Appeal In Gethsemane Luke 22:39-46
The Region v.39 He came out, and went,
It’s Specialness As he was wont (accustomed tendency)
This was a familiar hang out for the Lord. Jesus dealt with everything in His life by communion with God the Father. He went to a place that He drew enjoyment from, a garden, where He poured out His heart in pleading requests. It’s nice to have an area where we can just feel the comfort of the surroundings.
Its Specifics to the Mount of Olives
Gethsemane means olive press it was a garden surrounded by olive trees.
Its Selected His disciples also followed him
Only 11 disciples were with Him Judas was gone. He got the boot at what we call the last supper, kind of a haunting title to hang over a meal.
When we think of all that Jesus has done for us, like the disciples, we want to be bold in Christ to follow Him wherever He leads. If He goes up the mountain, down in the valley or where they smash olives into total pulverization to squeeze the rich nutritious oil out of them, we go. We want to follow each step He’s taking and is going to take. We want to be near Him in everything.
The Request v.40
Two Groups When he was at the place, he said unto them,
In the other gospels we’re told Jesus split His eleven followers into two groups. One of three was the troupe of Peter, James and John, and then another band of 8. It is an important training time, as it would have a major effect on the disciples. As we study Jesus patterns in prayer, and His prayer responses in the pressures of His call, this should have a deep influence on our life also.
Trying Grief Pray that ye enter not into temptation
The word “enter” means to go deep into, be invaded by, and even join the ranks of. Whenever there is trouble, or a test, we need to pray to not yield, cry out to avoid being tricked, and ask to be delivered from falling prey to trials and pressures.
Jesus cautions us to pray to avoid a traps, elude getting conned, and dodge getting caught in a hoax, or mislead in any way. Why do you think that is?
There are a couple of reasons. One, and I speak for my own experience in this; we’re stupid, like dumb, defenseless sheep, which wander after every shiny glittering object.
Second issue is we easily fall into every snare imaginable. The thing about stress and trouble is it weakens our resistance to temptation and the trickery of misleading frauds.
Stuff starts falling apart in our life, the wheels fall off of our wagon, and the pinch of economic stress presses us into a state of feeling like a complete flop.
First we discover ourselves in a set of external pressures, and next we get enveloped in a pile of internal emotionally subjective clobbering’s, and suddenly we’re softened into vulnerability. We now after the pressures and the inner feeling collapse made into big targets for each caper and prank floating by.
Another phenomenon is how coincidental it is that when we’re susceptible, that that is when creepy people make caustic remarks. We already feel like big reject and that heightens the devastation.
Once the ball starts rolling we find ourselves in an attitude, fall prey to making sour responses, and sarcastic jibes we latter feel bad about.
Than we feel ridiculous about our behavior and dumb remarks. When the junk really starts flying it’s so easy to back away from the Lord, become a secret follower, whatever that is. Or just give up on the word and prayer and wander down some meaningless dream path existence.
The Retreat v.41 He was withdrawn from them about a stone’s
Jesus, no matter what fix we’ve slathered ourselves in, is always close, He’s just a rock toss away.
Jesus prays alone. Our private prayers are the height of our genuineness in our prayer expression.
When we’re alone with God we can really pour out our hearts. When alone there’s nobody to impress, but, it’s so natural to discharge our clever verbiage or theological moxie in a gathering. But, being alone, that’s just the Lord and us.
Jesus in the extremity of despair went out alone to pray; and even in His most vexing moments, He was still only a stone’s throw away.
He in love and compassionate instruction is always training His own. Others are always first. Even in the depth of sorrow He stayed close, just a rock toss away, they could hear Him praying, and they each made a record of it.
He was schooling them, and us, on how to handle our extreme agony, and doing it not only for them, and us, but that we in turn could train others, of the beauty of communion with the Lord.
The Rigor Kneeled down Luke 22:41
Fell on his face Matthew 26:39
Fell on the ground Mark 14:35
This is a posture of deep agony, and intense need. Our Lord was pleading for help. He faced the horror of anguish and the torment of taking the sins of all humanities punishment. It is awkward and uncomfortable to see the Lord fall on His face in deep agony and crying out in complex emotional screams.
The Request v.42 If thou be willing, remove this cup from me;
Never-the-less not my will, but yours, be done
The Awfulness of Sin
2Cor.5:21 He was made sin for us who knew no sin
The Anguish of Substitution
Isa. 53:6 The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all
The Results v.43 There appeared an angel unto him
from heaven, strengthening him
Mk.14:34 My soul is exceedingly sorrowful unto death
Heb. 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death
Just the stress of facing the penalty for one individual’s life of criminal actions would be immense. The aspect of taking on every foul act that has ever been committed is immeasurable.
His sorrow was great, the Gospel of Mark records, the pressure and stress we’re so massive that He was on the brink of death. The wonder is, was He asking that the cup of suffering for our sins be taken away, or was He speaking of the immediate possible cup of anguish at the thought of taking our sins to the cross?
Was this cup of agony threatening to kill Him before the timing of the cross and is it possible He was pleading to be spared from death before He was able to die for our sins?
He wasn’t refusing to suffer for our sins, but just the agony of deep emotion of doing it, this, and the magnitude of it, in his feelings and thoughts; we’re overwhelming His humanity.
Luke doesn’t refer to it in his account, but in Matt. 26, the Lord checks on the disciples three times, and each time they are sleeping. What an amazing thing that He keeps track of our praying and our sleeping.
He tells them to watch and pray, the Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. We face this in our pray commitments, we set out to pray and weaken and lack the energy of vision. We easily give up on prayer really working or feel we’re not getting a timely enough response and we tip over into sleep on the pertinent issues and needs.
Psychological Strain v.44 Being in an agony
Persistent Swaying he prayed more earnestly
Physical Stress his sweat was as it were great drops
of blood falling down to the ground.
Medically this condition is called “hematidrosis.” This phenomenon is very painful and death threatening. It can occur under the pressure of great emotional disturbance. Blood becomes mingled with a person’s sweat and comes through the sweat glands. We see it in a small way when in a rush of embarrassing strain our face turns red. That’s blood rushing to our face. This hematidrosis is that extreme strain, going over the top in excruciating stress.
Jesus is showing us how to pray under the oppression of dismal, deadly abandonment. The feeling He is going through is a collision of total desertion, neglect, and rejection, that sensation of being discarded and dumped that is so poignant and heartrending.
Jesus was in an agony, which literally means in a contest like a wrestler would experience, a match, but this was a mental wrestling, an emotional fighting of intense sorrow. He allows us into this wrestling with Him; even now we can get emotionally twisted into a pretzel of severe grinding stress and sorrow.
He lets us feel the sting to lead us into His way. What did Jesus do? He prayed more earnestly which means more eagerly, fervently, and constantly. To be earnest is to pray continuously without ceasing with a passionate intensity.
The Rebuke v.45-46 Why sleep ye? Sleeping for sorrow
Sometimes sorrow and depression will make it so we cave in to exhaustion and sleep and other times we become wrung out with sleep disorder and our thoughts become uncontrollably jangled.
Now this is a raw situation, Jesus had asked them to pray for Him, to pray with Him, and what did they do, they slept. They we’re sleeping from depression and complete emotional drain.
The way to deal with problems whether emotional anguish, stress, or whatever the lack, or trouble, is not sleep, but prayer.
Yes it’s hard, but we need to face the agony and embrace the monstrous savage sorrow by learning to be strong in the Lord and access the power of His might.
When the Lord told Peter He would be sifted as wheat by Satan its interesting that the demonic challenges came through people blindsiding Peter with questions when he was wasted emotionally.
Denial is His response, and restoration was Jesus loving rejuvenation. Our Lord comes in with comforting compassion and strengthening for Peter, and in turn Peter was to strengthen his brethren, feed my sheep, care for the family of God, this is the process. We need to stay awake with Jesus, just watch with Him and fight with Him in prayer, persistent prayer.