God provides; Jesus prays

Published 9:49 pm Monday, December 10, 2018

By Tonya S. Swindell

“GD PRVDZ” and “IPRA4U2” comprised two different license plates. The letters on each tag provided divine inspiration. Combined, they formed a message that I could imagine Jesus telling His followers: “God provides. I pray for you too.”

In Matthew 16:13, Jesus asked the disciples, “Who do men say that I am?” He followed with a more personal inquiry: “But who do you say I am?” Peter replied, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

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Jesus’ curious question made me think deeper about who He claimed to be. According to 1 Thessalonians 1:10, He was “Deliverer.” In Ephesians 1:22, He was recognized as “Head of the Church.” Acts 4:30 acknowledged Him as “Holy Servant.” The writer of Hebrews identified Jesus as “Intercessor.”

Google defines “intercessor” as “a person who intervenes on behalf of another especially by prayer.” Hebrews 7:25 states: “Therefore He is able also to save forever (completely, perfectly, for eternity) those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to intercede and intervene on their behalf [with God].” People may not be aware of Jesus’ significant role as “Mediator,” “Arbitrator” or “Negotiator,” terms that are synonymous with “intercessor.”

According to “Learning from the Prayer Life of Jesus” by Robert Valarde, Jesus’ prayers were heartfelt, empathic and loving. He advocated for His followers in John 17:9, saying: “I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours.”

In Luke 22:31-32 of The Message Bible, Jesus encouraged friends, saying: “Simon, stay on your toes. Satan has tried his best to separate all of you from me, like chaff from wheat. Simon, I’ve prayed for you in particular that you not give in or give out. When you have come through the time of testing, turn to your companions and give them a fresh start.”

In Matthew 19:14-15, Jesus prayed for kids, saying: “…‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.’ And he placed His hands on their heads and blessed them before he left.”

According to Luke 9:28, Peter, James and John retreated to a mountain to pray with their Friend. Luke 5:16 tells us Jesus also prayed alone on a regular basis. He provided a model for intercession in Matthew 6: 9-13: “Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us today the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.”

Jesus’ acknowledged God’s holiness, sovereignty and provision. And when He prayed, God made a way. Now we are invited to intercede as Jesus did.


Tonya Swindell writes a blog for www.inspirenewlife.org and is a teacher for Kingdom Building Equipping School (KBES.com). She can be reached at 1brightot@gmail.com.