What Jesus Did! 'Repeated Pleadings!' — Mark 14:39

Sunday, November 3, 2024

[After Jesus found Peter, James, and John sleeping rather than praying, he] left them again and prayed the same prayer as before.
— Mark 14:39 NLT

Key Thought

So often we find ourselves praying the same prayer several times. Is doing so wrong? Should we keep on praying? How often is too often to pray the same prayer? These are legitimate questions. We do know several things for certain:
  • Even though Jesus requested God to let the coming crisis of the cross be lifted from him, God did not grant his request. Jesus asked that God's will be done and not his own. We are told that Jesus' prayer was heard (Hebrews 5:7-9), which is a reminder that God can hear us and answer "No" to our prayer. He may have other and bigger plans for us if we are willing to submit ourselves to his will.
  • Jesus prayed for deliverance three times while submitting himself to the will of God (Matthew 26:44). Paul also prayed three times for his thorn in the flesh to be removed as well (2 Corinthians 12:7-10). So I believe that we should seek the Lord repeatedly about issues. In fact, Jesus encourages us to keep on praying and not lose heart (Luke 18:1-8), suggesting that three times is not a biblical limit on repeated prayers. Yet, it is crucial that we are willing to leave things in God's hands to answer in the way that glorifies him.
  • Since Jesus faced such desperate trials, we can be assured that we can go to the Father through him and know that we are heard — that not just our words are heard, but also the unspeakable emotions of our hearts (Romans 8:26-27).

Today's Prayer

Father, please hear the prayer of my heart. I want to ask you to please ... (add your own prayer concerns here.) Yet Father, not what I want, but may your will be done in my life. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Hebrews 5:7-9
  • 2 Corinthians 12:7-10
  • Romans 8:26-27


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Illustration of Mark 14:39 NLT — [After Jesus found Peter, James, and John sleeping rather than praying, he] left them again and prayed the same prayer as before.

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.