Prayer and Jesus
Jesus prayed and he instructed his disciples to pray (Matt. 6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4). For Jesus, the priority of praying is being in the right relationship with God: seek first the kingdom and then righteousness. Jesus demonstrated this kind of relationship with God as a "life of living prayer." Scripture passages that describe Jesus' prayer life are printed in the table below.
Jesus' Prayer Life
John 17:1-5; 6-19; 20-26
But I tell you: Love your enemies [5:44 some late manuscripts add: bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you] and pray for those who persecute you,
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 5 In context: Matthew 5:43-45)
"And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full.
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 6 In context: Matthew 6:4-6)
But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 6 In context: Matthew 6:5-7)
He replied, "Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."[ 17:20 Some manuscripts you. 21 But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.]
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 17 In context: Matthew 17:19-21)
Then little children were brought to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked those who brought them.
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 19 In context: Matthew 19:12-14)
"It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be called a house of prayer,'[ 21:13 Isaiah 56:7] but you are making it a 'den of robbers.'[ 21:13 Jer. 7:11] "
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 21 In context: Matthew 21:12-14)
"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men's faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.[ 23:13 Some manuscripts to. 14 Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You devour widows' houses and for a show make lengthy prayers. Therefore you will be punished more severely.]
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 23 In context: Matthew 23:12-14)
Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will."
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 26 In context: Matthew 26:38-40)
He went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done."
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 26 In context: Matthew 26:41-43)
And as he taught them, he said, "Is it not written: " 'My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations'[ 11:17 Isaiah 56:7] ? But you have made it 'a den of robbers.'[ 11:17 Jer. 7:11] "
(Whole Chapter: Mark 11 In context: Mark 11:16-18)
And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins."[ 11:25 Some manuscripts sins. 26 But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your sins.]
(Whole Chapter: Mark 11 In context: Mark 11:24-26)
But the angel said to him: "Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John.
(Whole Chapter: Luke 1 In context: Luke 1:12-14)
and then was a widow until she was eightyfour.[ 2:37 Or widow for eightyfour years] She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying.
(Whole Chapter: Luke 2 In context: Luke 2:36-38)
One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples."
(Whole Chapter: Luke 11 In context: Luke 11:1-2)
He said to them, "When you pray, say: " 'Father,[ 11:2 Some manuscripts Our Father in heaven] hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.[ 11:2 Some manuscripts come. May your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.]
(Whole Chapter: Luke 11 In context: Luke 11:1-3)
The Pharisee stood up and prayed about[ 18:11 Or to] himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men-robbers, evildoers, adulterers-or even like this tax collector.
(Whole Chapter: Luke 18 In context: Luke 18:10-12)
"It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be a house of prayer'[ 19:46 Isaiah 56:7] ; but you have made it 'a den of robbers.'[ 19:46 Jer. 7:11] "
(Whole Chapter: Luke 19 In context: Luke 19:45-47)
Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man."
(Whole Chapter: Luke 21 In context: Luke 21:35-37