The Prayer Life Of Jesus

October 27, 2017 0 Comments

As many of you know, I have been working diligently each day writing a New Testament version of STRENGTH FOR TODAY: A Daily Bible Study Guide. In so doing, I have been reminded of the fact that Luke's gospel, in particular, emphasizes the "Prayer Life of Jesus"; how dependent He was on His relationship with His Father. To survey the prayers of Jesus when He was on earth is like walking on hallowed ground. Allow me, in this article, to list ten times Jesus prayed. I know you will be blessed, as I was, to learn how important prayer was to our Savior.
1. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE THE START OF HIS EARTHLY MINISTRY (Luke 3:21). Here we see Jesus is praying at His baptism—the outset of His public ministry. Prayer is a good way to begin any ministry for God. Without it, we are doomed to failure. Prayer shows that we are depending on God, not ourselves!
2. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE WAS TEMPTED BY SATAN (Matt. 4:2). Christ fasted for 40 days in the wilderness. Prayer and fasting are always connected. Herein is the secret to victory over temptation: dependence upon God and a thorough knowledge (and memory of) God’s Word. Physically Jesus was weak, but spiritually He was prepared.
3. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE CHOSE HIS DISCIPLES (Luke 6:12). All major decisions in our lives should be made only after much prayer. God never leads His children down the wrong path. If we seek His face, and want to know His will, He will guide us. But didn’t He make a mistake in choosing Judas? Not at all. Even this choice was in accordance with Bible prophecy (Psa. 41:9), and in perfect keeping with His Father’s plan.
4. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE CALMED THE SEA (Mark 6:45). While the disciples were struggling with the storm, Jesus was in a mountain praying. Too often we ask God to take the storm away. But He sent the storm in order to teach us to trust Him more. And that is precisely what Jesus is praying for in the disciples' lives--their spiritual growth. See the Bible Study I did a few weeks ago on this theme.
5. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE WAS TRANSFIGURED (Luke 9:28). What a sight it must have been. The Luke account adds that Jesus was praying when the transfiguration occurred! Think about that for a moment. What changes would take place in our lives—what glory people would see in us—if we were men and women of prayer. Yes, prayer changes things. Namely, it changes us.
6. JESUS PRAYED, AND AS HE DID, HIS DISCIPLES ASKED HOW TO PRAY (Luke 11:1). This is a tremendous text, as it shows the influence Christ’s prayer life had on others. Watching Him pray, the disciples were motivated themselves: Lord, teach us to pray. Parents, do your children see you praying? Do they observe in your life what real prayer is all about?
7. JESUS PRAYED FOR PETER EVEN BEFORE PETER DENIED HIM (Luke 22:32). One of the most heartening truths in all the Bible is this truth: Jesus is praying for me. What the Lord said to Peter (I have prayed for thee), is a promise we can claim ourselves. See, for more proof of this: I John 2:1, I Timothy 2:5, Romans 8:34, and John 17:9,15,17,20.
8. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE WENT TO THE CROSS, IN THE GARDEN (Luke 22:44). This is undoubtedly the most intense, fervent, emotional prayer of His life, as Dr. Luke records: “His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling to the ground”. It is important to note here that when Jesus taught the disciples to pray He used this formula: “Thy will be done”. Here, Jesus practices what He preached. “Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me, nevertheless not my will but thine be done!” See also I John 5:14
9. JESUS PRAYED BEFORE HE BROKE BREAD IN THE UPPER ROOM (Matt. 26:26). If Jesus could “thank” the Father for the bread, which was the very symbol of His crucifixion, then we should be able to thank Him for anything that comes into our lives. I Thes.5:18. Actually, Jesus prayed at least three different times while He broke bread. It became, in essence, His “trademark”. He did it when he fed 5000, in the upper room, and after his resurrection in the home of the two disciples from Emmaus.
10. JESUS PRAYED FOR HIS ENEMIES RIGHT BEFORE HE DIED (Luke 23:34). From His baptism to His dying breath, Jesus is seen praying. No bitterness or anger, but a prayer for forgiveness. “Father forgive them”. What a way to die! It represents everything He came to do!

Richard Seefried
Harrisonburg, VA
Richard Seefried has a Master’s Degree in Christian Ministry, and is licensed & certified by the NCCA as a clinical pastoral counselor.