Resurrection Road | The Model Prayer

Learning From Jesus' Prayer In The Garden Of Gethsemane

James Greer
Mar 27, 2022    24m
Join us in today's message as we study Jesus' prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane to better understand how we ought to pray. Prayer is communicating with God our Father. Through prayer, we are able to speak and hear from Him. Video recorded at Pineville, Louisiana.

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This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

James Greer: [00:00:00] Morning, Journey Church. That praise team rocked the house. Amen? Let’s hear it. Yeah, I thought I was going to take a breather. I got to singing with them so much that last time, and then they said, uh-oh, it's time to preach. Brooke, I appreciate this. She knew I was going to be preaching on the Garden of Gethsemane, and she dressed that up. That took her some time and energy. So let's hear it for Brooke. Amen? Hey, I want you to look on the front of the bulletin. We're getting ready for Easter, and we're going to have a Saturday night service at 5:30. Amen? So we added an extra service. I mean, man, I'm going to tell you, did you know the next service we got five baptisms? Amen? Not only five baptisms, one of them's my granddaughter. I'm a little slow. We're all sitting in a room talking, and she said, Papa, you know, I want Jesus in my heart, and I want to be baptized. I just kept talking and talking. She said, Papa. About third time, I said, well, you've already done that. She said, no, I haven't. I said, oh, sorry. So it wasn't that I was such a great papa. Just she’s such a great granddaughter. Amen? So the next service, we're going to have five. Isn’t that great? So I'm really excited about that. We titled the message the secret to the most powerful prayer, but the real truth is the secret to understanding one of the most powerful prayers.

James Greer: [00:01:19] In fact, really and truly, if we could really understand, believe, and apply this prayer, it would not only help us better understand when prayers are answered but when prayers aren't answered. Man, it's easy to celebrate what prayers were answered. Amen? I mean, man, praise God. Hallelujah. But when they're not answered, it's not so easy. In fact, many times what we call unanswered prayer, well, sometimes we get upset. I've seen people blame God for that and not understanding what it is. Many times what we call unanswered prayers are prayers that were answered, just not in the way and the time we wanted them to be answered. But if we really could understand today, better understanding prayers, it could change our past, present, and future. So what we're going to do today, we're going to look at a pattern of prayer which we call the Lord's Prayer, and then we're going to look at the principle of prayer. And the principle of prayer is what you need, man. When you’ve got the greatest needs in your life, and you said, man, I just got to go to God and I got to understand during this time of prayer. So let's look first kind of a pattern of prayer. It says, it's called the Lord's Prayer. We can always pray this. In this manner, therefore, pray, Our Father, hallowed be thy name. It says God wants to have an intimate relationship with you.

James Greer: [00:02:44] So when we pray, that's part of that. And he says, Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. That means God wants to use you more than you can imagine. He's got bigger things for you. And He's also, it's not all about you. Give us this day our daily bread. In other words, God said, I can provide for you so you don't have to worry about it. Forgive us our debts as He forgives our debts. In other words, we need to forgive, and God will forgive us. And do not lead us into temptation. Deliver us from the evil one, for ours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. In other words, he’s just saying there, listen, I'm going to help you do what's right and I've got the power to protect you. That's kind of a pattern of prayer. That's a prayer that you can pray, but you don't have to pray that exact prayer. It's a pattern. Now we're going to look at the principle of prayer. This principle of prayer was Jesus’ I think greatest need in his life. And Jesus had to go to the Father. It was a principle that He said, Father, I need you probably to answer this prayer. He faced what I think is the greatest temptation, the greatest hurt in his life. And we've got to learn what He did where we can understand it.

James Greer: [00:04:00] I mean, He was going to go to the cross and Jesus said, hey, God, I'm in the Garden of Gethsemane. Could it pass me? Could I not do that? And in Mark 14, He says, and then they came to a place. It was named Gethsemane. And He said to His disciples, sit here while I go and pray. And he took with him Peter, James, and John. Did he only have three disciples? No. But he only brought Peter, James, and John. Did you know that Jesus somehow had favorites too? Well, not favorites. He loved everybody, but He had a better relationship with some than He did others. And sometimes people say, well, they just have cliques. No, we all have certain people that sometimes we have better relationships with. Amen? It's just that way and it's okay. Jesus had a special relationship with Peter, James, and John. He said, I'm going to bring with them because during this time I'm troubled. I'm deeply distressed, and I want these guys to be with me. And He said, my soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch for me. Watch until Father and I fell to the ground and I prayed. Here He goes. You ready? Principle number one. And I prayed that if it was possible, the hour might pass from me.

James Greer: [00:05:30] Principle number one is when you have a great need is to pray. You say, well, sure, but did you know there's a lot of people going around, they're talking about it, they're telling people about it, but they're not praying. The Bible says you have not because you ask not. The Bible even tells us how to pray. Sometimes when you have the greatest need, you should go to James 5:14 through 16. It says, when you're sick, it really says, call the elders and let them pray over you. Sometimes it says, if that doesn’t work, anoint them with oil. But it says, I want you to get out of this, if you have a need and a great need, the first thing you do is what? Pray. And you ask for God to remove it. Heal me. Take care of it. Me and my family. Whatever you need, the first thing you do, principle number one is ask. And James said in James 4:2, you have not because you ask not. Okay. Then He said, Abba Father. He said, hey, Father, I honor you. I obey you. I believe in you. All things are possible for you. Take this cup away from me. Nevertheless, not what I will, but your will be done. Principle number one, principle one is to ask. Amen? Principle number two is to believe that God can do anything. Amen? He said, Father, all things are possible with you.

James Greer: [00:06:58] But I want to tell you something else about principle number two. Amen? He said, Father. God's got to be your father before the impossible things can be done. So what I want you to know in here today is, is God your Father? Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man come to the Father but by me. So I want you to ask, but it's not going to do any good to ask unless God is your Father. And the only way God becomes your Father is through His Son, Jesus Christ. So if you don't know His Son, Jesus Christ, that's the most important thing you could do today is to settle it and say, hey, I need to go to the Father because it’s the Father that causes the most impossible things in the world to be done. And you just come and say, hey, I believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross. He rose on the third day. I believe that I sinned, and I need Jesus in my heart where I can go directly to the Father. Amen? Do you think anything is too hard for the Father? Of course not. Because later on, the Father raises the Son. And with Jesus on earth, He knew nothing was impossible. I mean the blind to see, the lame to walk, fed the 5,000. And Jesus is saying, Father, I know there's absolutely nothing too hard for you.

James Greer: [00:08:09] And you've got to believe in the Father, and you've got to believe there's nothing too impossible for you. So there's a couple of things you got to do. Number one, you've got to ask. Number two, He's got to be your Father, and you've got to believe there's nothing too hard for the Father. The third principle is really hard for me. Nevertheless, not what I will, but what you will. That's the hard part. It's not always God's will to remove the problem. It's not always God's will to heal. I wish it was. But it's not. Some of the fastest growing religions today is prosperity theology. They say, man, if you just believe enough, you have enough faith, you're going to be healthy, wealthy, and wise. The problem with that theology is not in the Bible. The problem with that theology, when you believe I just believe enough they're going to be healed and then they're not healed, you think there's something wrong with you. The problem with that theology, it’s not in the Bible. Everybody that has great faith is not wealthy, healthy, and wise. There's some of the people, they’re the most faithful people in the world that still get sick and they die. Let me give you some examples, recent examples in the Bible and in our own church. I mean, how about Fred? I mean, Fred loved the Lord. I mean, I can remember when Fred got cancer, I went over to see him, and he said, man, you know, I have been praying that I could do something great for the Lord and I guess cancer is it.

James Greer: [00:09:42] I said, pardon? He says, going through cancer, I'm going to get to witness to people I never would have before. We prayed for Fred. Did you know Fred got healed but it wasn't here? It was in Heaven. So see, it's not always going to be that way. And I want our church people to know the truth because it's the truth that will set you free. How about Janet Fuquay? I mean, she would sit right there where you're sitting, and she would act like she's singing and praising God. But sometimes her vocal cords could not do that. I mean, she lived life out to the fullest. I mean, even at the end, she was fishing and smiling and doing everything she could do. But we prayed for her to get physically healed. She wasn't healed here. She was healed in Heaven. Amen? I'm talking about right here in our church. That's what I want you to know. How about one of my best friends, Robert Fuller? We've been friends probably 40 years. He got Parkinson's, and he's very, very sick. Very sick. His wife, Sarah, is a godsend. I've never seen anybody take care of somebody with an attitude. I've never heard her complain, not one time.

James Greer: [00:10:49] And we've prayed multitudes. Many of y’all have. Remember when y’all sing with him. That’s probably the last time he sang. God hasn’t healed him. He will, though. Misty Smith, her husband was here, the last service. She's not getting better. Janice Rawlin. How about her? She's just gone through the second brain surgery. She was here the last service. They cut her from here to here. When they got out, they said, we want you to know you’ve got another tumor here, and next month we want to scan your back to look for tumors. I don't know. I think either Tony or Curtis told me when their mother passed that she brought food over. The first Sunday she was here, she was out in the car. He was here. She let me go out and talk to her. She’s smiling, trying to keep a good attitude. She said, I know Randy can't take it. So if I pass, I've already got everything done. I even got the pictures together. She loves the Lord. She smiles. She's happy. Did y’all know that she lost her teenage son also to a tragic accident? He loved the Lord. I baptized him. I remember when he came out of the baptistery, he said, man, Brother James, there's a party going on in my heart. That’s what he said. Fine. She lost her son. Now she's got cancer.

James Greer: [00:12:31] The point is I want you to understand the truth about the principle of prayer. You ask. God can do it. I want you to believe that God can do it. We've had people in our church that God has supernaturally healed and delivered. But He does not always do that. Many times, we won't understand it till Heaven. Our five-year-old granddaughter, Kaylee, I had pages and pages and pages of prayers. I just believed God was going to heal her. I almost had a nervous breakdown after because I did. I remember I had Mike come over and lay hands on her. I just knew that God was going to deliver and heal her. You know, but He didn't. She went on to be with the Lord. Just barely turned five. She was about to turn five. And how do you explain that? God doesn’t always do that. Some of your prayers are not going to be understood until you get to Heaven. You ready? Some of the sicknesses are not just for that person. You ready? But it's for other people to learn from. Only God knows the end. I don't, and you don't. So you've got to understand when you're going through things like that, that God knows the end, not me and not you. You got to believe that God loves you, and God still wants the best for you. And He knows the end, and I don't. I have a different understanding today and yesterday of Romans 8:28, that we know all things work together for good of them who love God and to those who are called according to His purpose.

James Greer: [00:14:25] I believe I love God, and I believe I'm called according to His purpose. And I believe He didn't always work those things out right now. I do believe He does. I believe every person that I spoke of, that I could claim that verse for them. But it might not be in our timetable. It might be later. And it might be for somebody else. It might not be just for us. I always used to claim that just for me personally. But it might not be for me. It might be for the overall big picture that I don't understand. It might be for the end. But I still have to believe that it happens. I believe when Jesus was praying this prayer, He wanted the cup to be removed, and He knew that God had the power to do that. Jesus had never sinned. But He ended up going to the cross and shedding the blood. But thank God, on the third day was the resurrection. Because that Jesus had never sinned, what looked like the worst thing that ever happened ended being the best thing that ever happened because that's my way in your way of going to Heaven. So God can take what looks like the worst thing that ever happened and turn it around to the best thing that ever happened.

James Greer: [00:15:47] But we might never understand it till we get to Heaven. So if you're here today and you’ve never accept Jesus, it'd be the best thing that ever happened to you. Because just like every one of those, some of those that have passed, they're not here. They're in Heaven. And right now, they would tell you that's the most important thing you can ever do. He goes on to them and He came and He found them sleeping. And He said to Peter and Simon, are you sleeping? Could you not wait at least one hour and watch? Could you not watch and pray lest you enter into temptation? The spirit is indeed willing, but the flesh is weak. Let me tell you about that. Number four. There's some tines that the people you love, they just can't understand what you're going through. I know you want them to, and they want you to. I think Peter, James, and John wanted to. They just can't. And if you're not careful, you're going to go through some things that only you and God can go through. And if you're not careful, you'll blame other people for not understanding what you're going through. Just take it to God. And it really hurts. Jesus was suffering. He was in pain. One of the greatest pains He ever did. And they didn't understand. They weren't comforting Him. They were back sleeping.

James Greer: [00:16:56] And so if you're going through some great things and you say, hey, my mate didn't understand, my friends don't understand, and you think they all just left you, no, they didn't. They're just doing the best they can. And sometimes God’s saying, I want you to understand, I'm the one that'll never leave you. I'll never forsake you. But I'll go through it with you, and I'll give you what you need. He finally goes on to say again, I went to Him again and prayed. I spoke the same words. He went to His Father. And then He returned and He found them sleeping again for their eyes were heavy and He didn't know what to answer him. So then He came, third time, and He said to them, they are still sleeping and resting. It's enough. The hours come. He surrendering His will to His Father. And behold, the Son of Man, He's going to betray me. Now see, He's prayed and prayed and prayed. Now, at the end, He says, I'm going to be betrayed by one of the disciples into the hands of sinners. The end of Jesus’ life was rough. Not only was He going to be crucified, He was going to be betrayed. His best friends were sleeping while He was trying to pray. You're going to go through things. You need to understand that that's going to happen. But I can tell you one thing.

James Greer: [00:18:16] You better have a Garden of Gethsemane. You better have a place every single morning that just you and God can go and meet. The greatest thing in my life is I have a place when I get up, I can go and be with God. God can know my heart. I can share my greatest need, my greatest sorrows. He knows what they are anyway. But the greatest thing I tell God more than you need to hear from me, I need to hear from you. That's where I read my Bible. That's where I do my study. I need to place a Gethsemane, just me and God. You do too. You got to remember there's going to be times that you go through things, just you and God. Can I tell you? It's better if you've been already going to God before you need to go to God. So start now. Remember this. Jesus understands what you're going through. He told us in Hebrews 4:15, Jesus understands every weakness of ours. He understands. Whatever you're going through here today, Jesus said, I want you to know I understand it. Why? Because He was tempted in every single way that we are, but He didn't sin. But He understands what you're going through. So whenever you are in need, whatever you need, we should come bravely before the throne of our merciful God. There, we will be treated with undeserving grace and we'll find help.

James Greer: [00:19:43] Do you understand what that means? God is saying, I understand everything you're going through. I want you to come to me. You're going to find undeserving grace, and you're going to find help. In other words, you're going to get what you need. If I don't remove the problem, I'm going to give you the grace, which is the power to go through the problem. So why would you not go to Him? Amen? God's going to turn it out for the good. It just might not be right now. Sometimes you'll go through suffering and pain, not just for yourself, but sometimes it's for somebody else. Remember that God knows the end and you don't. And remember there's nothing too hard for God. As I get ready to close, I want you to remember some things. First, I want you to know whatever you need to ask, I would do it today. Whatever it is. He says, I understand what your need is. He said, you should bravely come to me. I'll give you the grace. In other words, I'll give you the grace and you can find help. I'll give you what you need to go through the problem or I'll remove the problem. Why would you not come and ask? Amen? But it's got to be your Father. You got to make sure that God is your Father. If you're not, you're just talking to the air.

James Greer: [00:20:59] I've seen people say, I just pray all the time. But is God Your Father? Well, you can only come to the Father through Jesus Christ. You've got to make sure Jesus is your Savior to be able to go to the Father. I mean, I would make sure today with everything going on in the world. If you don't know Jesus as your Savior, man, today's the day to make sure. Not that you think, but to make sure. Dot the I’s, cross the T's. Some and say, man, I know that I’ve sinned. All who have sinned come short of the glory of God. The very point of Easter was Jesus paid the price for your sins. And He wants you to come and acknowledge that He died on the cross and that you want Him to forgive you your sins and you want him to be the Lord of your life. Maybe you're going through something nobody else understands. They're trying to understand. But you feel like, hey, I tried to share my heart, and they don't understand. Don't get so upset with them. Jesus’ own disciples didn't even understand what Jesus was going through. And Jesus may be using that to tell you, I want you to come to me. I'm going to never leave you. I'm never going to forsake you. This is a great time for just me and you, me and you to go through it together. And last, you need to believe there's absolutely nothing too hard for God.

James Greer: [00:22:22] Nothing. He can do anything. I mean, He could take care of your need instantly. He could put somebody in your life. He can do anything. And today might be the day. Would you stand and let me pray with you and pray for you? God, you're such an awesome God. I've often said God's presence is here. And God, your is presence here in a great and mighty way. When you're promises are preached and they have been preached, that means your power is here. When your power is here, God, you do great things. Let people see what they need to ask. Help them to understand that you understand. And for those that don't know Jesus as their Savior, today would be the day where they could go to the Father. Maybe they need to follow through in baptism. Maybe they were baptized as a child, but now they know what they're doing and they want to make sure and they want to make it public. We got five of those doing that the next service. Maybe they want to join the church. Maybe they say they need somebody just to understand that could pray with them and pray for them. And they just believe because the power and the presence of the Holy Spirit is here, they can pray, and God might just meet that need supernaturally. Whatever God has laid upon your heart, let him have His will and His way today. I ask it in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.

Bruce Goulart: [00:23:41] On behalf of Pastor James, I just want to say thank you so much for being here this morning. Y’all, what an amazing worship and also, what an amazing message we had this morning. Y’all, hey, I just want to challenge you right now that, hey, if you are listening to those principles, everything that Pastor James was talking about in his message today, y’all, I want you to bring them home with you today. I want you to practice them this whole entire week, next week. And y’all, you're going to see your life start changing. And I just want to encourage y’all to keep it up. I know things might seem to get hard or things might seem not be going the right way, but there is a plan. Hey, I just want to again say thank y’all so much for being here. But hey, if you need someone to pray with you or you just want to take your next step, I want you to text the word ‘MOVE’ over to the number (318) 413-6422. That number is (318) 413-6422. That word is ‘MOVE’. But again, I want to say, thank y’all so much for being with us, and I hope to see y’all next week.

Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.
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Journey Church
2900 Donahue Ferry Rd
Pineville, Louisiana 71360