Explore the Bible Study: Do I Have the Strength?

9:02 AM

Finding strength to continue to be faithful to God can be challenging when we face so much this world throws at us. We can become discouraged, we can succumb to temptations, we can choose to disobey God's will, or, we could just choose to sleep through it all! In this week's Explore the Bible Study: Do I Have the Strength, from LifeWay, we find the disciples, at the moment of the greatest spiritual conflict in the history of the world, sleeping! They were oblivious to the agony and need of their Lord and to the temptations they were going to face.

As you lead your group to study Matthew 26:36-46 this week, be sure to draw a contrast between the results of Jesus spending time praying and the disciples spending time sleeping. In order to illustrate this, I have included Matthew 26:47-56 in the teaching ideas. In these passages we see the following results:
  • The evidences in Jesus life that His prayer time with His Father gave Him strength to do God's will: He did not fight; He did not try to escape; He kept the disciples from fighting; He did not call on more than twelve legions of angels - equivalent to an army of 72,000 angels - to fight on His behalf; He determined to fulfill all the Scriptures.
  • The evidences that revealed how the disciples lack of prayer caused them to succumb to temptation: They drew their swords; A disciple cut off one of the high priest’s servant's ears; they all deserted Him and ran away.
John MacArthur, in his commentary on Matthew observed this:
There is no indication that they (the disciples) uttered a single breath of prayer, no hint that they called on the Father to strengthen them. In smug self-confidence, they still thought of themselves as loyal, dependable, and invincible. Like many believers throughout the history of the church, they foolishly mistook their good intentions for strength. The sinless Son of God felt a desperate need for communion with His Heavenly Father, but His sinful, weak disciples, as so often they do today, felt no desperation about their weakness and vulnerability.

Teaching Ideas
Video tour of the area around Gethsemane

Image: Gethsemane


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