Quality Prayer - Matthew 6:5-8

be still and know that God is God

Matthew 6:7 “But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen [do]: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.”

Now there were two great faults they were guilty of in prayer, against each of which we are here cautioned--vain-glory (v. 5, 6); and vain repetitions, v. 7, 8. We must not be proud and vain-glorious in prayer, nor aim at the praise of men.

What was the way and practice of the hypocrites? In all their exercises of devotion, it was plain; the chief thing they aimed at was to be commended by their neighbours, and thereby to make an interest for themselves. What the places were which they chose for their devotions; they prayed in the synagogues, which were indeed proper places for public prayer, but not for personal.

Some of the most effective prayers are the shortest prayers. Jesus said, “Peace, be still,” and the wind and the waves ceased (Mk. 4:39). He said, “Lazarus, come forth,” and Lazarus came back from the dead (Jn. 11:43-44). Today, there is a new emphasis on the quantity of prayer instead of the quality of prayer. Jesus never advocated long prayers, and there are only a few instances where Jesus prayed long prayers. This is not to say that communion with God is not important. It certainly is, but formal prayer is only one part of our communion with the Lord. Psalm 5:1-2 uses the words “prayer” and “meditation” interchangeably.

Therefore, communing with God through keeping your mind stayed on the things of the Lord is also prayer. There are also times in prayer when we need to be still and know that God is God (Ps. 46:10). Many times we ask the Lord to speak to us, but He can’t get a word in edgewise. We’re doing all the talking.

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