Psalm 81:10 - 12 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt. Open wide your mouth and I will fill it. "But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices.”
The disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray. In Matthew 6 Jesus taught them what we call the Lord’s Prayer. One of the requests is: “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” If we pray this, we are asking for His guidance, which requires we follow it. To lead is to guide somebody. To guide is to advise or influence somebody. In other words He will not take you by the nose and lead you away from whatever is tempting you. You need to yield to His leading and follow Him to see your deliverance. If you continue into temptation, the result is yielding to the evil one and ultimately a need for deliverance.
In Psalm 81 the Lord is prophesying that Israel wouldn’t submit to me. The consequence of this is He simply lets them follow their hearts’ desires. He doesn’t interfere or overrule. He says in verse 14 that if they would listen to Him and follow Him, He would quickly subdue their enemies.
How often do we blame God for situations where His hands are tied because of our stubborn heart? If we are willing, He is willing. Jesus said in John 15:7 “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.” He also said: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well”. (Matthew 6:33) This statement is made in the context of worry and the pursuit of worldly goods like the pagans or gentiles do. Pagan or gentile means a multitude in the Greek. Often we follow the way of the multitudes instead of pursuing the best way – the way of the Lord.
Prayer: “Father, forgive me where I have followed the ways of the world and it’s so-called wisdom. I choose to seek you first, your kingdom and your righteousness. Bless me and subdue all my enemies in Jesus name. Amen.”