This is not literally saying we have to pray in a closet. What if a person doesn’t have a closet? There are hundreds of scriptural examples of people praying right where they are. This is simply saying that we should not pray for show. Our prayers should be sincerely addressed to our heavenly Father and not to the people who listen. Jesus was certainly not speaking against public prayer, as can be seen by His example and the examples of many other great men of God. He was simply stressing that our motivation behind prayer should not be to gain recognition from others.
It’s impossible to have any boldness in our relationship with God apart from total dependence on what Jesus did for us. The moment we place any faith in our own goodness, our conscience condemns us because we are incomplete in our own flesh. It’s because Jesus has sanctified and perfected us forever that we don’t need any more offering for our sins. This is what gives us boldness to enter into the very holy of holies—the place where God dwells. The veil has been torn in two and all obstacles removed from our approach.
Jesus’s instructions in Mathew 18:15 on how to resolve conflict with others are seldom followed. The very first step given in this verse is to go directly to those who have trespassed against us. Usually, we go to others and tell them what was done to us. So, we thereby become a tool of the devil to spread the offense and infect others with the strife (James 3:16).
If we would always talk TO those who offend before we talk ABOUT them, it would solve a number of problems. First, we often take offense when none is intended, so talking to the other person right away would likely bring clarification and reconciliation quickly, thus preserving the relationship. It also prevents offense in others when we clear the matter up before gossiping and spreading misinformation.
What benefits have you seen from applying this verse in your life?
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Moses was a mediator in the Old Covenant, but in the New Covenant, Jesus is the only mediator between God and man. Therefore, anyone seeking to be a mediator as Moses was is antichrist. That is to say they are opposing the work of Christ. They may be doing it in ignorance with good intentions, but they are trying to take a position that only Jesus can occupy.
The point that Paul was making is that the Lord desires for all of us to be saved through Jesus. His statement in this verse, about “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men,” (1 Tim. 2:5) strengthens this point. There are no other gods than our one true God, and there is no other way to our Father except through Jesus.
Lost people are consumed with worry about how they will make ends meet. Born-again believers should not be that way. You may then ask, “If I’m not consumed with these things, who will be?” But God knows what you need better than you do. If you would seek Him first in your life, God will take care of your prosperity.