Pray That You Will Not Fall Into Temptation
Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” (Luke 22:39-40)
While many perhaps find routine to be boring, there is something in it that I find rather comforting. Routine was a part of Jesus’ life, too. In our verses for today we find Him “as usual” on the Mount of Olives. He would routinely retreat to a solitary place where He could commune with His Father in prayer. There are certain spiritual disciplines that should be routine in our lives … and this is one of them. When we spend time with God and in His Word we find focus and strength and clarity. Scripture tells us:
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15)
Pray continually. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:11)
In our verses for today, Jesus commands us to pray against falling into temptation. We must recognize and flee from whatever or whomever incites us to stumble and fall from the path God has ordained for us to follow. We are not to make excuses or try to justify poor choices when the Holy Spirit is clearly directing us to “Run!”, “Flee!”, “Don’t go there!” or “Don’t do it!” When God shows us that something is wrong for us, it is wrong for us–no matter if it is acceptable for someone else. We must keep our eyes on our own paths! The conscience is a wonderful gift from God–pay attention to it!
Take It to Heart
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. (Colossians 3:5-10)
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him.
(2 Corinthians 2:14)
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. (Ephesians 6:10-18)