Truth for Life - March 22, 2016

March 22

Competing Prayers

John 17:24

O death! Why do you touch the tree beneath whose spreading branches weariness finds rest? Why do you snatch away the excellent of the earth, in whom is all our delight? If you must use your axe, use it upon the trees that yield no fruit; then you may be thanked. But why will you chop down the best trees? Hold your axe, and spare the righteous.

But no, it must not be; death strikes the best of our friends: the most generous, the most prayerful, the most holy, the most devoted must die. And why? It is through Jesus' prevailing prayer--"Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am."

It is that which bears them on eagle's wings to heaven. Every time a believer moves from this earth to paradise, it is an answer to Christ's prayer. A good old divine remarks, "Many times Jesus and His people pull against one another in prayer. You bend your knee in prayer and say 'Father, I desire that Your saints be with me where I am'; Christ says, 'Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am.'"

In this way the disciple is at cross-purposes with his Lord. The soul cannot be in both places: The beloved one cannot be with Christ and with you too. Now, which of the two who plead shall win the day? If you had your choice, if the King should step from His throne and say, "Here are two supplicants praying in opposition to one another," which shall be answered? Oh, I am sure, though it were agony, you would jump to your feet and say, "Jesus, not my will, but Yours be done." You would give up your prayer for your loved one's life, if you could realize the thoughts that Christ is praying in the opposite direction--"Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am."

Lord, You shall have them. By faith we let them go.

Family Bible reading plan

verse 1 Proverbs 9

verse 2 Ephesians 2

ESV Daily Devotional New Testament

The ESV Daily Devotional New Testament will help readers become familiar with the central message of the Gospel by guiding them through the entire New Testament over the course of one year.  
Featuring 365 devotions, each day includes two readings – one from the first half of the New Testament (Matthew through Acts) and one from the second half (Romans through Revelation). After each reading, a short reflection helps readers consider the meaning of the passage and understand how it relates to Jesus Christ and the Gospel. Each devotion concludes with a short passage from the Psalms that ties thematically into the day’s Bible reading, as well as a “Thoughts for Prayer” section to guide personal prayer and meditation.  

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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187,

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