Bishop Blake: Why We Need To Pray
Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr. teaches us to follow the example of Jesus Christ…and pray.
Prayer was one of the central activities of the life of Jesus Christ. It was the one thing that Jesus never forgot to do. Whether He’d find himself in the midst of victory or in the midst of trials, Jesus always prayed. The idea of the Son of God praying has given rise to questions in the minds of many individuals. But the fact that He is the Son of God qualifies Him above all others to pray and converse with the Father.
Prayer was central in the life of Jesus Christ. Before all the crises of His life, He prayed:
- He prayed before He embarked upon the Galilean ministry.
- He prayed as He started to choose His disciples.
- He prayed before the Sermon on the Mount.
- He prayed before the Transfiguration.
- He prayed before He taught the disciples the Prayer of the Ages.
- And He prayed before the ordeal of his trial and His crucifixion.
But as often as Jesus prayed, He was never the central focus of His own prayers. His prayers were usually concerned with entreating God’s help or aid for someone else; for some person in need, or to prepare Himself to minister to the needs of the people.
So if Jesus had to pray, how much more do we have to pray?
Righteousness: Your Key to Survival
It is God’s will that we live free from sin for His glory. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world; you are the salt of the earth.” He knew that Holiness was essential for our salvation. “Be ye holy for I the Lord your God am holy” (1 Peter 1:16). You are God’s example of what His grace can do.
Sanctification is our only evidence of the power of the Gospel. Men are seeking a way out of sin, but they will never hear us or receive our message if we are bound by the same sins they are bound by. They’ll never hear our testimony if we’re doing the same wrong things that they are doing. And if Jesus Christ has made no change in our lives, why should men expect that He’ll make a change in their lives? If you love the Lord, then your life ought to show it; your behavior ought to illustrate it.
Pray, and Be Holy
Our mighty God said, “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Trust in the Lord with all your heart; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.” So, if you’re wise, you’ll pray to the Lord:
Lord, help me; keep me. Help me to do your will. Lord not my will but Thy will be done. Not my way but, Lord, help me to walk in Your way. I want to serve you, I want to bring glory to your name. I want to live for you.
Jesus prayed that you’d be sanctified and that you would walk in holiness before the Lord. If you want God’s power, pray, and God will bring you out. Pray, and God will bring you over. Pray, and God will bring you through, and God, the Son, the Holy Ghost, and all the angels will show up to help you make it and to help you to live for Him. God can keep you! He is able! You can live Holy by the power of God.
SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES – Matthew 5-7, Matthew 17, John 17:1-17, 17:26; Hebrews 12:14, 2 Chronicles 7:14, Proverbs 3:5-6, 1 Peter 1:16.
Adapted from the sermon, “Christ’s Prayer for the Preservation of His Followers”; Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr., at West Angeles Cathedral.