“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds” (2 Cor 10:4).
Betrayed by his own, Judas, the Romans soldiers, “seized Jesus and arrested him. With that, one of Jesus’ companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear “ ( Mathew 26:51).
Infuriated, Peter, Jesus’s companion, imagined he would receive accolades for this bold move. But he got only a rebuke. “Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?” (vv 52-53).
What happened here and the message of Jesus for us today is to understand there is a difference between physical laws and spiritual laws. In a physical world which we see we believe all our battles are won through a display of might and muscle power. The spiritual world does not have to display such. For it operates on a different level of humility and love. While in the physical world once attacked one is quick to react and prove themselves by hitting back, in the spiritual world one takes insult, does not retaliate as the world understands, because of knowing where the ultimate power lies.
This story ends with Jesus conquering death on the cross. Peter might have been discouraged that his natural course of action was ignored, but he lived to see why Jesus had rebuked him, for there was a higher power.
You too could be attacked by all sorts of enemies with apparently more vicious tools which you can’t match. Inside you, perhaps, there is an urge to hit back as well. You might have invested a bit in building up an armory which you want to put to use and level off those who dare attack you. “Let me show them whom I am!”
Not so fast. Jesus is saying surrender all to me for victory lies with me! Hence King David sang, “I put no trust in my bow, my sword does not bring me victory; but you give us victory over our enemies, you put our adversaries to shame. In God we make our boast all day long, and we will praise your name forever” (Psalm 44: 6-8).
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, in all my battles may I draw upon your power of love and humility that conquers all wrongs, for ultimate victory lies in you, and this I pray, in Jesus’s name.
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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God”- (Philippians 4:6).
Perhaps you have heard of a certain old magical trade known as mind reading. According to this trade which has been around for millenniums and has its share of tricksters, mind readers are able to discern thought patterns of individuals before they even utter a word. There are places in the world where this, as expected, is a lucrative occupation, with practitioners, often crafty magicians, demanding hefty fees, just to tell thoughts of others.
As Christians, of course, we have an all knowing God, who has said, “Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him” ( Mathew 6:8). Further, our Lord has pointed out, “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” ( Mathew 6:7). As Christians when we come to God, we do so with full confidence, that He already knows our needs and will meet them according to his glorious riches in heaven.
Of particular interest for us here is that while God perfectly knows our needs before we even dare utter a single word, still it is incumbent upon us to make our requests known to Him. A parent may have long noticed a child has a need for a new pair of shoes; but it is another dimension, when the child does come out and share aloud that his pair is worn out, hurting and is quite in need of a new one. The parent takes notice, especially when the matter is presented with such conviction and urgency. This is why Hannah cried out to God for a child ( 1 Samuel 1:9-18).
In our relationship with God, as the Apostle Paul advises us, it is not just enough to assume and let matters be, that after all God knows all our needs, but we too bear a responsibility to make our requests known to Him. Once we are done with that, we let God do His part, allowing “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding” ( Philippians 4:7) to flood us.
So, today, do not hold back your needs from the Almighty God. He has paved the way to walk to Him through His son Jesus Christ, to present your case, bear out your heart’s desire, and let Him do His part!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise to make my requests known to you, knowing you have heard me even before I utter a single word, assured that you will meet each and every one of my needs, according to your glorious riches in heaven!