The exhortation of the apostle Paul in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 is bothersome. “Pray without ceasing.” How is this possible? Some say we should go throughout the day with a prayerful attitude. Fine. But this does not really fit the bill. Some English versions of the Bible simply say, “Pray continuously.” Here is the hook.
Ancient Israel had to offer continual sacrifices to the Lord. “You shall offer the one lamb in the morning and the other lamb you shall offer at twilight … It is a continual burnt offering … ” (Numbers 28:4 & 6). The continual sacrifice was worship every morning and evening. The puritan commentator Matthew Henry says, “The particular law of the daily sacrifice, a lamb in the morning and a lamb in the evening … intimates that when we are bidden to pray always, and to pray without ceasing, it is intended that at least every morning and every evening we offer up our solemn prayers and praises to God … ” This is so helpful.
How can I pray without ceasing? I maintain a pattern of morning and evening prayer. I embrace each day by coming to God with prayer when I rise in the morning and before I settle in for the night. Surely the benefits are positive if I listen to God by reading the Bible and by talking to God in prayer every morning and evening.
Click here to listen to an audio message, “Morning and Evening Prayer.”