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Summary: It is vey good to pray in the night, either alone or with other believers or with members of the church. There are many benefits of praying all night long.

STAY AWAKE TO STAY ALIVE

Luke 6:6-16”1Now it happened on another Sabbath, also, that He entered the synagogue and taught. And a man was there whose right hand was withered. 7 So the scribes and Pharisees watched Him closely, whether He would heal on the Sabbath, that they might find an accusation against Him. 8 But He knew their thoughts, and said to the man who had the withered hand, “Arise and stand here.” And he arose and stood. 9 Then Jesus said to them, “I will ask you one thing: Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to destroy?”[a] 10 And when He had looked around at them all, He said to the man,[b] “Stretch out your hand.” And he did so, and his hand was restored as whole as the other.[c] 11 But they were filled with rage, and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.12 Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. 13 And when it was day, He called His disciples to Himself; and from them He chose twelve whom He also named apostles: 14 Simon, whom He also named Peter, and Andrew his brother; James and John; Philip and Bartholomew; 15 Matthew and Thomas; James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called the Zealot; 16 Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot who also became a traitor.

There should be times if you call yourself a Christian, and you want to move up, you want to be a favorite of God, a divine favorite , a divine champion that you need to put your sleep away, stay awake, pray and wait upon the Lord. There are times when certain things that are important; for example important decisions are to be made that you need to forget sleep and pray to God. Most situations in our lives may require us to forget sleep and stay or keep vigil so that we may move up to fulfill our destinies on earth. It may be a time of critical need or crises in life and there is a need to pray through over situations of life. It may be a time of corporate prayer vigil as a family or with a group of believers or with others in your church, when such opportunity arises, you should take advantage of it and stay awake through the night to seek the face of the Lord. Hebrews 11:6 says “6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Our God is still a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. He is the same yesterday, today and forever more.

Jesus Christ; our Lord and Savior, our role model here on earth did this many times. In our reading this morning, there were two events that were recorded against the background of our Lord Jesus going to a mountain alone to pray all night. The first was as a result of a powerful miracle that he performed in the Synagogue on another Sabbath day. That means that He already had at least another controversy with the Jews about the Sabbath. (Mark 3:1-7). Jesus scored two victories on this particular event. He scored a victory over the agents of the devil that called themselves Scribes and Pharisees. In verse 7 the Bible says they were watching Him, looking for opportunity to destroy Him. According to them, no healing could be done on the Sabbath, healing to them means practicing medicine and no one is allowed to practice his or her profession on Sabbath. They were more concern about laws that should not be broken and activities that should not be done than freedom from bondage, poverty and in this case freedom from pains and sufferings as a result of sickness and inability to do anything with a hand that is already deformed by the devil. They were more concern about negatives than positives. They were saying because of laws, nobody was supposed to be healed on Sabbath day.

They were more concerned about what people should not do even if it was good rather than advancing the kingdom of God. They believed that their way was the only way, their religious systems had all the answers and so could not accept Jesus because He did not fit into their system. Any system that does not accept Jesus Christ or could not accommodate Him is bound to fail, it is just a matter of time.

We thank God that Jesus was more concerned about doing positive things and doing good and helping those that are in need. Jesus said in verse 5 of our text that He is the Lord of the Sabbath; that is He has authority to overrule the Scribes and the Pharisees’ traditions and regulations because He created the Sabbath, a Creator is always and will always be greater than the creation. Because Jesus had the spiritual gifts of knowledge and discernment, he knew their thoughts and asked them “Is Sabbath a day of doing good or doing evil, is it a day of saving lives or destroying lives? They could not say anything because they were already defeated. The true will of God for Sabbath day is to do good not evil. When you can help someone on Sabbath day and you refuse to do it, that is evil, if you have an opportunity to save life on Sabbath and you refuse to, that is evil. To hold to a rigid letter of law when good can be done is never the true intent of any of God’s laws. God’s laws are always for the best good of all, they are just and holy laws. No day should be a lord over man or put a man under bondage. Man should be the Lord of the Sabbath and be free to do good on this day. This was the first victory that the Lord Jesus scored on that day.

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