Family Bible Study lesson for March 23: Praying for Protection
March 7 2003 by Crate Jones , Psalm 91:1-16

Family Bible Study lesson for March 23: Praying for Protection | Friday, March 7, 2003

Friday, March 7, 2003

Family Bible Study lesson for March 23: Praying for Protection

By Crate Jones Psalm 91:1-16

This lesson deals with the fourth element of the prayer of Jabez: "Keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain" (1 Chr. 4:10, NIV). The New King James translates it, "Keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain."

He wanted God to deliver him from evil to avoid personal and corporate suffering that sin brings. The overflow of sin can no more be controlled than a river when the dam is broken.

Jabez was asking for God's protection from temptation. Jesus taught us to pray, "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil." It's the kind of prayer God hears and is able to answer.

Threatening situations, spiritual and physical, arrive unexpectedly. Erroneously, we think we can handle them. But when our boat begins to sink, we may row mightily and bail water furiously before we finally cry, "Lord, save us."

Psalm 91 speaks of the security we have in God.

Strengthen my faith Psalm 91:1-2 When we have faced danger and have seen God's protection, our faith increases.

One moonlit night at Mars Hill College, I was accosted by four guys, faces covered with bandanas and one holding a gun. The words, "Put 'em up!" should have stopped me, but somehow I kept walking. When one said, "Shoot him (expletive)," my shoulder blades almost touched. Thinking the pearly-gates might be about to open, I looked heavenward and prayed, "O God!"

At that same time, 400 miles away, my mother was awakened and "heard" the Lord saying: "Bud's in danger!" She got on her knees and prayed for God to take care of her boy. Evidently, He did. My faith was greatly strengthened.

Calm my fears Psalm 91:3-8 Fear can be imaginary or real. At times, God lays something on our heart that He wants us to do that may cause us to fear.

A fatal shoot-out between two rival motorcycle gangs put seven men in jail. God "told" me to visit them. I was fearful, but the urgency deepened. I went and met with one of them.

I gave him a New Testament and tried to lead him to Jesus. We prayed. He was responsive to me but would not make that commitment. We met another time; same reaction. Due to a lack of witnesses, they were released.

One evening, the news came that one of the "Storm Troopers" had been killed by a policeman. It was my friend.

I had written him a letter which he had shown to his mother. At her request, I conducted the funeral and had the opportunity to preach about Jesus to 125 gang members. I knew then why God overcame my fear and sent me to the jail.

Guard my steps Psalm 91:9-13 These verses do not imply that God never allows bad things to happen to His people. Experience proves otherwise. Though we may not know the reason, believers keep on trusting God.

When Harriett and I attended the Southern Baptist Convention in Houston, our itinerary included Waco and Dallas.

During the convention, I had a strong feeling that we should not go that way. I prayed, "Lord, if we are not to make that trip, let my heart get calm." Peace came. Harriett had a similar uneasiness, so we decided to go straight home.

We would have been in Waco on Monday morning. As we drove toward home that evening, we heard the news that a tornado had hit Waco that morning, with great destruction and loss of life.

Why we were spared and others were not, we do not know. For His own reason, He had guarded our steps.

Answer my prayers Psalm 91:14-16 On a preaching mission to Jamaica, I heard a deacon pray for a 99-year-old blind lady: "O thou rock of ages, split! That she might hide herself in Thee." Prayer leads us to the "rock" of our salvation.

Jesus is the fulfillment of Isaiah's prophesy: "A man will be as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest, as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land" (Isaiah 32:2).

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3/7/2003 12:00:00 AM by Crate Jones , Psalm 91:1-16 | with 0 comments
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