Victory or Defeat? (Matthew 26)

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.  The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Matthew 26:41)

Can you imagine being a soldier on a battlefield and curling up to take a nap in the midst of enemy fire?  Napping doesn’t make sense in the midst of physical combat any more than it makes sense in the midst of spiritual combat.  I believe that’s why Jesus gave the instructions to his disciples: watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.

The implications of Jesus’ words are that one major way to fend off temptation is to be alert.  In our hearts, we often want to do the right thing, but we so easily give in to what our bodies (our flesh) tell us to do.  We have to fight off the temptation through prayer and watchfulness.

When is the last time you decided to be “on guard” with the things that are tempting to you?  When did you last bring your temptations to God in prayer?  We can’t expect victory if we’re not alert on the battlefield.

Father, help me to be alert in the midst of my trials.  Please keep me focused on You and aware of what’s going on around me.  Strengthen me, by Your Spirit, even when I’m weak – that I may stand strong in You.

About Seth

Seth is a pastor, author, and speaker who lives in Batesville, Indiana. He is married to Kari, and they have two daughters, Madelyn and Noelle.

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