Watch and Pray, Matt 26:41

In Matt 26:41, the Lord’s instruction to his disciples in the garden of Gethsemane was not just to pray, but to watch and pray.  This watch is like a sentry on watch.  So, like a sentry, we need to be ready to respond to any situation with prayer no matter the time of day or night.  You’re on watch and prayer is your weapon.  Watch and pray:

That ye enter not into temptation – Matt 26:41.  You and I must watch to “see” the temptation before us and discern it’s source and our response for protection.  The temptation could be from within, from your own flesh, like the war of your members, Jas 4:1-2.  It could be from the world and all that is going out there that is contrary to God.  Or it could be a direct attack from the devil.  In each case, we must watch and pray to know how to fight off the temptation.

For ye know not when the time is – Mk 13:33.  This verse is a reference to the Second Advent.  But it has application to us.  In the context, every one of us has work to do.  And we don’t want the Lord to come and find us sleeping when he returns at the rapture.  Or find us like the servants in Lk 21:34-36, overcharged with surfeiting (over abundance), drunkenness, and cares of this life.  Christians seem to be distracted by so much stuff, activity, and worldly cares these days.  This is the time to keep praying and doing the work God has given you to do.  Watch that you aren’t given to any of these things.

For all saints – Eph 6:18.  These are intercessions for each other.  “And for me”, Paul said.  We need prayer now more than ever.  Watch for each other so we’ll know just how to pray.  Let’s keep our eyes on developments in our lives, so we can pray effectually.

With thanksgiving (for answered prayer) – Col 4:2.  Answered prayers are implied in our thanksgiving.  This prayer is like the prayer in Eph 6:18-19, where we are instructed to pray for a door of utterance, and boldness to speak as we ought to speak, Col 4:3-4.  We want to keep our eyes open for the many ways the Lord is answering these prayers and opening these doors for us to speak and preach the gospel.  We cannot let any opportunity to witness pass us by because we aren’t watching and praying.

Conclusion: watch and pray to be aware and ready for temptation, for the Lord’s return, for the needs of the saints, and for opportunities to witness to the lost.