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Matthew 6:7-8 (NKJV)
And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
Debo observed that he was now telling lies again. He took a count and identified seven different lies he had told in the past four days. He knew he needed to pray. “I cannot continue like this,” he said to himself as he set his alarm clock to wake him up by 2am to pray. After praying in the spirit that night for about two hours, he knew the power of lying in his life was broken. He now had the power to resist the urge to tell lies.
Debo prayed because he observed a fault in his life that was resisting his outward walk of righteousness. His prayer that night was not about his needs, but about seeking the righteousness of God.
In order to properly understand what Jesus is saying in today’s Bible verses, we need to read further to verses 31 and 32. Here Jesus explains the content of the prayers of Gentiles. Their prayers are all about their needs which can be summed up in “what shall we eat, what shall we drink, and what shall we wear?”. In the context of God’s kingdom, it is vain to keep repeating such prayers.
Jesus goes ahead to tell us in Matt 6:33 that if we seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all these other things (of physical and material needs) will be added unto us. One we seek the kingdom of God is in the place of prayer. No one can truly seek the kingdom of God without seeking to walk in God’s righteousness (see Rom 14:17).
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