Luke 11: Principles of Prayer

How were the disciples familiar with what John the Baptizer taught about prayer? How was that teaching different from what Jews practiced in the synagogue?

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Luke 11:1 One day, Jesus was praying at a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said, “Sir, teach us how to pray, just as John the Baptizer taught his followers.”
King James
Luke 11:1 And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.

What was different about Jesus’ prayer that caused the disciples to think they needed teaching?

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Luke 11:1 One day, Jesus was praying at a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said, “Sir, teach us how to pray, just as John the Baptizer taught his followers.”
King James
Luke 11:1 And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.

What is the best way to approach God about something?

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Luke 11:2 “When you pray,” Jesus said, “say something like this: ‘Our Father in Heaven, may your name be honored. May your Kingdom come and your will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.”
King James
Luke 11:2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.

How can God’s will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven?

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Luke 11:2 “When you pray,” Jesus said, “say something like this: ‘Our Father in Heaven, may your name be honored. May your Kingdom come and your will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.”
King James
Luke 11:2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.

Why pray for what we need today?

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Luke 11:3 “Give us the bread we need for today.”
King James
Luke 11:3 Give us day by day our daily bread.

What does forgiving others have to do with our being forgiven?

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Mark 11:26 “If you do not forgive, your heavenly Father will not forgive your sins.”
Luke 11:4 “Forgive our wrongs as we forgive the wrongs of others. Keep us from temptation and protect us from evil.”
King James
Mark 11:26 But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.
Luke 11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Does God ever lead people into temptation? Why?

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Luke 11:4 “Forgive our wrongs as we forgive the wrongs of others. Keep us from temptation and protect us from evil.”
King James
Luke 11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Why should we keep knocking on God’s door?

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Luke 11:5–8 He used this illustration: “Suppose you knock on a friend’s door at midnight and say, ‘Please let me borrow three loaves of bread because a friend of mine has arrived from his journey to see me and I have no food for him.’ From inside he will say, ‘Do not bother me. The door is locked, and my family and I are in bed. I am not getting up to give you anything.’ I tell you, he will not get up because of friendship. But because of the persistent knocking, he will rise and answer your needs.”
King James
Luke 11:5–8 And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.

Do people always receive what they ask, find what they seek, or get an answer in response to every knock? If this is not always true, why did Jesus say it?

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Luke 11:9–10 “Ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened for you. Those who keep asking will receive. Those who keep seeking will find what they are looking for. And the door will be opened to those who keep knocking.”
King James
Luke 11:9–10 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

If God is so gracious, forgiving, and generous, why doesn’t he give us what we want? Under what conditions will he give us what we want?

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Luke 11:11–13 He repeated this illustration: “If a son asks his father for bread, will he receive a stone? If he asks for a fish, will he be handed a serpent? Or if he asks for an egg, will he give him a scorpion? No, of course not. If you who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children, you can be sure your heavenly Father will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
King James
Luke 11:11–13 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

Once the man was able to speak, what do you think he said?

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Luke 11:14 One day, Jesus met a man who was unable to speak because of an evil spirit. At Jesus’ command, the evil spirit left, and the man began to speak. The crowd was amazed.
King James
Luke 11:14 And he was casting out a devil, and it was dumb. And it came to pass, when the devil was gone out, the dumb spake; and the people wondered.

Why did some say that Jesus was using the power of the devil?

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Luke 11:15–20 Some of them said, “He gets his authority from Beelzebub, the ruler of evil spirits.”
Others wanted to test him by asking for a miraculous sign from Heaven.
Aware of what they were thinking, he said, “A kingdom working against itself will soon be destroyed. Any city or family who fights internally cannot last very long. If Satan wars against himself, his kingdom cannot survive. You say Beelzebub gives me power over evil spirits. If Beelzebub is my power over evil spirits, by whom do your followers cast them out? They prove you have a double standard of judgment. But if I cast out evil spirits by the Spirit of God, the Kingdom of God has come unto you.”
King James
Luke 11:15–20 But some of them said, He casteth out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils. And others, tempting him, sought of him a sign from heaven. But he, knowing their thoughts, said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth. If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because ye say that I cast out devils through Beelzebub. And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your sons cast them out? therefore shall they be your judges. But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.

What gives us power over Satan?

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Luke 11:21–22 “When a fully armed strong man guards his house, his property is safe. But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, the owner will lose his weapons and personal belongings.”
James 4:7 Completely surrender your will to whatever God wants. Then your resistance to the devil is an absolute no, and he has no reason to hang around.
King James
Luke 11:21–22 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Why can’t a person be neither for nor against but neutral concerning Christ?

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Luke 11:23 “Anyone who is not with me is against me. If you are not gathering with me, you are scattering.”
King James
Luke 11:23 He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.

For what reasons do people revert to their own ways after rehab?

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Luke 11:24–26 “When an evil spirit leaves a person, it wanders through barren places, seeks rest, but finds none. It then says, ‘I know. I will return to the person I left.’ It finds its former home empty, swept clean, and ready to be occupied. So it finds seven spirits more evil than itself, and they go in to live there. That person is worse off than before.”
King James
Luke 11:24–26 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he saith, I will return unto my house whence I came out. And when he cometh, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first.

How can those who hear God and obey be better than the mother of Jesus?

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Luke 11:27–28 While Jesus was teaching, a woman shouted from the crowd, “Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that nursed you.”
“No,” he said, “the most blessed are those who hear God’s word and obey him.”
King James
Luke 11:27–28 And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked. But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.

When Jesus referred to Jonah, what “sign” was he talking about?

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Luke 11:29–30 As the crowd grew larger and pressed in, Jesus said, “This is a wicked and adulterous people who demand miraculous signs. No sign will come except the sign of the prophet Jonah. Just as Jonah was a sign to the people of Nineveh, so shall the Son of Man be to this generation.”
King James
Luke 11:29–30 And when the people were gathered thick together, he began to say, This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet. For as Jonas was a sign unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this generation.

How were the people of Jesus’ day condemned by the Queen of Sheba, who went to hear Solomon?

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Luke 11:31 “The Queen of Sheba will testify and condemn this generation, because she came from far away to hear the wisdom of Solomon. Now someone wiser than Solomon is here, but you refuse to listen.
King James
Luke 11:31 The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.

Why were the people in Nineveh better than those whom Jesus preached to?

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Luke 11:32 “The people of Nineveh give evidence to condemn this generation, because they repented at the preaching of Jonah. Behold, someone greater than Jonah is here, but you do not repent.”
King James
Luke 11:32 The men of Nineve shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.

How can darkness be confused with light?

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Luke 11:33–35 “People do not light a lamp and hide it under a bowl. It is placed on a stand to give light to everyone in the house. Your eyes are like a lamp for the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad, darkness fills your body. So make certain that the light you think you have is not actually darkness.”
2 Corinthians 11:14 We shouldn’t be surprised, since Satan never reveals himself as a liar. No, he presents himself as our helper, a messenger of truth, an angel of light.
King James
Luke 11:33–35 No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light. The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.
2 Corinthians 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

What does it mean to be “filled with light”? What can obscure that light?

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Luke 11:36 “If your whole body is filled with light, with no darkness in the corners, your life will radiate the light like a lamp on a stand that brightens your whole house.”
King James
Luke 11:36 If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.

If Jesus was fully aware of Jewish customs, why didn’t Jesus wash his hands before eating at the Pharisee’s house?

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Luke 11:37–41 While Jesus was speaking, a Pharisee asked him to dinner. He entered the man’s house and sat to eat. His host was amazed to see that Jesus did not wash his hands first.
Jesus said, “You Pharisees wash the outside of cups and platters, but you leave the inside dirty, full of greed and wickedness. How foolish. The same one who made the outside also made the inside. If you would become givers of what you have, you could be fully clean.”
King James
Luke 11:37–41 And as he spake, a certain Pharisee besought him to dine with him: and he went in, and sat down to meat. And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner. And the Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of ravening and wickedness. Ye fools, did not he that made that which is without make that which is within also? But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are clean unto you.

What was inconsistent about the Pharisees in their giving?

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Matthew 6:1 “Be careful not to do your good deeds publicly so others will admire you. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in Heaven.”
6:5 “Do not be like the hypocrites, who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so people will see them. I assure you, they already have their reward.”
Luke 11:42–43 “How terrible for you Pharisees, because you give a tenth of your mint, rue, and the tiniest amounts of other herbs, but you neglect what is right in giving to others and in loving God. You should not do one while neglecting the other. How terrible for you Pharisees, because you love the seats of honor in the synagogues. You love to be admired as you walk through the markets.”
King James
Matthew 6:1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Luke 11:42–43 But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. Woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets.

What do hypocrites and unmarked graves have in common?

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Luke 11:44 “How terrible for you Pharisees and teachers of the Law. Hypocrites! You are like unmarked graves that people walk over and never know it.”
King James
Luke 11:44 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them are not aware of them.

When do insults hurt the most? Why?

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Luke 11:45 A teacher of the Law said, “Teacher, when you say these things about our people, you insult us too.”
King James
Luke 11:45 Then answered one of the lawyers, and said unto him, Master, thus saying thou reproachest us also.

What burdens did the teachers of the Law place upon others, which they would not carry themselves?

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Luke 11:46 “How terrible for you teachers of the Law,” Jesus said. “You place unbearably heavy burdens on others but will carry none of the weight yourselves.”
King James
Luke 11:46 And he said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers.

How did memorials to dead prophets condone their harsh treatment?

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Luke 11:47–48 “How terrible for you, because you build memorials for the prophets your ancestors killed. With your monuments, you give testimony that you approve of their deeds.”
King James
Luke 11:47–48 Woe unto you! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and your fathers killed them. Truly ye bear witness that ye allow the deeds of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and ye build their sepulchres.

What made Jesus’ generation responsible for the killing of all prophets since the beginning?

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Luke 11:49–51 “God in his foresight has said, ‘I will send prophets and messengers, and they will kill some and persecute others.’ So this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets since the beginning of the world, from the murder of Abel in the beginning to Zechariah, who died between the altar and the Temple sanctuary. I tell you, their deaths will be charged against this generation.”
King James
Luke 11:49–51 Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute: That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation; from the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, which perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you, It shall be required of this generation.

What were the teachers of the Law doing that kept others from entering the Kingdom?

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Luke 11:52 “How terrible for you teachers of the Law, because you have stolen from the people the key to knowing God. You will not enter the Kingdom, and you hinder others who would like to get in.”
King James
Luke 11:52 Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.

Why were religious leaders so angry with Jesus?

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Luke 11:53–54 As Jesus left the house, the Pharisees and teachers of the Law were in bitter opposition to him and looked for ways to turn his words against him. They stalked him, waiting for him to say something incriminating so they could have him arrested.
King James
Luke 11:53–54 And as he said these things unto them, the scribes and the Pharisees began to urge him vehemently, and to provoke him to speak of many things: Laying wait for him, and seeking to catch something out of his mouth, that they might accuse him.