Jesus Said “When You Pray” But He Didn’t Say When

“When you pray,” Jesus said to his disciples, and He went on to give some instructions about how to do it including His model prayer (Matthew 6:5-13). But He didn’t say when we should pray.

David, a man after God’s own heart who is credited with writing 73 of the 150 Psalms, tells us when to pray.

“My voice You shall hear in the morning, O LORD; In the morning I will direct it to You and I will look up” (Psalm 5:3).

But in Psalm 55:17, David went further: “Evening and morning and at noon I will pray …”

This example was matched by Daniel, the “greatly beloved” prophet. “He knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days” (Daniel 6:10). For such daily spiritual habit, he was thrown into the lion’s den where he no doubt maintained his diligence in prayer!

In Psalm 119:164 David wrote “Seven times a day I praise You.”  Did he literally pray every 3.4285714 hours? Or, if you take out eight hours for sleeping, every 2.287142 hours? Seven in the Bible is the number of completeness and perfection.   Of course we would all have more successful days if we regularly pray throughout the entire day—and have our minds constantly on things above, walking after the spirit not the flesh, and striving to bring every thought into subjection to the obedience of Jesus Christ.

And that’s what 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 is getting at: “Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks.”  A 24/7 mindset of oneness and unity with God the Father and Jesus Christ our Brother through the Holy Spirit.

When should we pray?  Don’t let me interrupt you!

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