Bible Reading Day 98

by markburlinson

Day 98 – Luke 11:1-28

Read online.

Good morning. 🙂
What a great introduction to Luke we had on Sunday! And it was so good to see so many children testifying to faith in Jesus through baptism!

Yesterday we saw several facets of trying to do the right thing, with some more successful than others! Today we carry that thought over into the supernatural realm with Jesus teaching us to pray, and responding to a challenge about evil.

First, the disciples are so impressed by the way Jesus prays that they want to learn from Him. Who impresses you in a way that you want to emulate them? And who are you influencing by your life?

The prayer Jesus teaches them is, of course, the “model prayer’ which is recorded in Matthew and Luke. Luke’s version is shorter than Matthew’s but the exact words are not important. Do you know why? Because Jesus says “This is HOW you should pray” not “this is WHAT you should pray.”

So the themes for our conversation with God are the themes found in these verses – adoration of God for who He is, respect for His name, desire for his rule in our lives and on the earth, trusting Him for provision and protection, as well as forgiveness (conditional on our giving as well as receiving it), and guidance or direction that leads us toward God rather than away from Him. (You can write your own paraphrased list too – I have deliberately tried not to give you ALL the details I see in the prayer!).

The key thought is that prayer is a relationship with God, not a rote repetition of a formula.

And to encourage us to keep pursuing God, Jesus tells the story of the friend needing help late at night. For me the outstanding truth of this story is that God wants us to keep on asking Him for what we need. And most of all, we need to be filled with God’s Holy Spirit. Because God is a good, loving Father, He will always answer our prayers (although the implication of the whole passage is that we need to keep on asking until He does!).

We stay with the supernatural for the second half of today’s reading, where Jesus is challenged by some who say that His power comes from satan. This is often the reaction of those who know about God without knowing God’s loving power for themselves. Seeing God’s power at work is outside their limited experience, so they condemn the power as evil. Jesus has a clear answer for that accusation: if evil is being overcome, then this must be God’s power, otherwise satan’s kingdom is already doomed by civil war. Instead, satan’s kingdom is doomed by the Kingdom of God coming, which it does whenever the power of God is demonstrated. So in light of that clear distinction between good and evil, Jesus warns us all to be sure we are on His side – not for fear, but to be fully engaged with what He is doing as the Kingdom of God comes. Then there is no room for evil influences to return to trouble us!
 
Have a great day!

Mark.
 
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