Luke 22:46 Are You Sleeping?

“Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.” Luke 22:46

Sleep is one thing that many people really like and desire more of. When a person is sleeping, he is at rest and all of the problems of the world appear to disappear. Once in a deep sleep, one will often forget about the challenges of the day.

People will even take drugs to help them fall asleep to get away from the stress they are under. Facing the problems is rejected for the peaceful sleep in a world of dreams.

As Jesus was preparing to be crucified He went into a garden to pray with some of His disciples. He asked them to pray. When they fell asleep, He told them they need to pray to keep from falling into temptation.

Just as the world desires to sleep away the problems of their day, many in the church get weary and have gone to sleep. Instead of praying for strength to overcome temptation, they turn the other way and go to sleep. In their drowsiness many turn to and accept sin as a normal part of their lives.

Whole churches have fallen asleep, rejecting God’s word and allowing sin to be actively practiced and promoted inside the church. They have fallen into the temptation presented for them.

Both individual believers and churches are living in a way that does not set them separate from the world, but a part of the world.

Every believer needs to be awake and alert in prayer, keeping watch out for the evil temptations of Satan in their lives. Their prayers need to be ones of asking God for wisdom, direction and strength to accomplish His will–to be like Jesus.

As you examine your life, does it show that you have fallen asleep and allowed sin into your life? Any sin that you have chosen to accept as normal is against God.

God is right there with you, giving you His Holy Spirit to strengthen and guide you in His ways. He does not want you to fail and fall into temptation and makes a way out of it every time. However to overcome temptation, you must be willing to stay awake and pray to know how to overcome it.

Are you awake and praying? Or are you asleep?

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will be awake and alert to the evil ways of this world; that you will pray as Jesus prayed; that you will be guided by God’s Holy Spirit to flee all temptation.

Luke 20:25 Giving To Caesar

He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” Luke 20:25

For centuries taxes have been something that no one really likes, but have to pay. Every nation on earth has some type of taxation upon the people, some pay more, others pay less.

In most nations, if not all, there is a penalty for those who choose to not pay their taxes. Some people fight hard against paying taxes for many different reasons. Most often it is just for selfish reasons, they do not want to give up their money to anyone else.

Some people asked Jesus if it was right to pay taxes to Caesar or not. Jesus simply said to give to Caesar what belonged to him and give to God what belonged to Him.

At the time Jesus said this, Israel was controlled by the Romans, a pagan nation. There were heavy taxes to be paid. Today people still have to pay taxes.

However there are many other things to be given to either the world or to God.

When a person becomes a believer, he is to give his entire life over to God. This means his loves, desires, actions, thoughts….every thing. God is to have complete control of the person.

Instead of giving all to God, many are divided and given a lot of their affections to this world. They chase after the physical things of this world, such as money, material things and sin.

The world can have these things and the believer must be willing to give it to Caesar–Satan–and not hold on to the temporary, death bringing things. The temporary things of this world will never bring true life, but only death.

When the believer gives to God the things that are eternal, he will gain eternal life.

As a believer you must give things every day to either Caesar (the world) or to God. There is no option to not give. However, you can choose who and what you give.

Allow the world to have its sin and death, they do not do you any good. These things only bring separation from God.

Give your life to God. As you give all of yourself to God, He, in return will give you eternal life, something the world neither knows, nor can give.

Allow Caesar to have what belongs to him. Give what matters to God.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as Savior; that you will dedicate your life to God; that you will abandon sin to follow God; and that you will seek the eternal things of God.

Mark 15:12-14 Crucify Him!

“What shall I do, then, with the one you call the king of the Jews?” Pilate asked them. “Crucify him!” They shouted. “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!” Mark 15:12-14

People are quick to get caught up in the excitement of the crowd. With just a few well stated words, a few people can stir up a large group of people to cast away all common sense, causing them to do what they normally would not do.

Most riots and protests start out this way, drawing in more people to the excitement.

Pilate found nothing criminal in Jesus, so he wanted to know what the people wanted done. As a whole, they wanted Jesus crucified, hung on a tree, even though He was innocent of any crime.

Very few people would agree to killing an innocent man. Currently, in America, there are many riots because a possibly innocent man was killed. People do not openly like that idea.

Even though most will say they do not want to see an innocent man killed, they do it every day. Each and every time someone sins against God, they are crying out “crucify Him” again and again.

People refuse to believe or remember that their acting upon their freedom to sin is what is crucifying Jesus. It is because of sin that Jesus went to the cross to be crucified to bring about forgiveness.

Those who are believers in Jesus and realize why He went to the cross, must strive not to place Him back on the cross. Turning away from all sin and refusing to give into temptation causes a person to not get caught up into the crowd of this world’s ways in crying out, “crucify Him.”

Every day there will those around you who do not care about Jesus. There will also be spiritual forces that will be working on you to get you to sin against God.

Remember that there are more with you on God’s side, than those against God. All of the angels and God’s Holy Spirit is with you to encourage you to turn from sin and not cry out, “Crucify Him.”

Do not get caught up in the sin and ways of this fallen world. Do not get caught up in the crowd against God. Be thankful for what He has done and serve Him.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will repent of all sin; that you will turn from all sin; that you will serve Jesus and no longer crucify Him; and that you will be led by God and not this world.

Mark 14:38 Prevent Falling To Temptation

Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Mark 14:38

The standards of the world are that a person can do whatever he desires as long as it does not directly hurt another person. These standards can be found everywhere. Advertisements are focused on telling a person needs and deserves to have whatever he desires.

People cannot have or do too much, according to the world. This type of thinking causes people to do things that go against God and His standards.

As Jesus was about to be betrayed in the garden, He was praying and wanted the disciples to pray also. They had fallen asleep. Jesus told them that they needed to watch and pray to keep from falling into temptation.

Temptation is the pressure put on someone to go against a set of standards for a different set of standards. Most often this is going against God’s standards–sinning against God.

No true believer really wants to sin, but do continue to fall into the temptation to sin. The world wants nothing more than a believer to sin against God. The best way for a believer to prevent this from occurring is to watch and pray.

One must watch and be alert to the deception of the world to get him to sin. He must also pray. Prayer will keep his focus upon God and His standards, taking his eyes off of the lusts and temptations of this world.

God is willing to show a person the way out of temptation as the pressure arises. He will be able to bring to memory His word to turn from all sin.

Without prayer, a person is trying to do it on his own and will fall to the temptation to sin.

Every day there will be times of temptation that will come up in your life. You have to be ready to combat those temptations.

The first way to beat them is be watching for those temptations. Be ready for when the enemy tries to trip you up.

The next thing you need to be doing is praying, without stopping. Rely upon God’s Holy Spirit to strengthen and guide you to turn away from all temptation to sin. Refuse to sin against God.

Watch and pray that you will not fall into temptation.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will pray to God continually; that you will rely upon God’s strength; that God will open your eyes to temptations before you; and that you will refuse to sin against God.