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Part 2: The Power of Prayer
Little Johnnie was saying his bedtime prayers a week before his birthday. In a loud voice he listed all the things he wanted. "Do not pray so loudly," his mother instructed. "The Lord is not hard of hearing!"
"Maybe He isn't," admitted Johnnie, "but Grandma is."
WE ARE AT WAR
2Tim 2:1-4 You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. (2) And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others. (3) Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. (4) No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs--he wants to please his commanding officer.
Eph 6:18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world - Karl Barth
Foster – ‘to pray is to change’
PRAYING WITH BROKEN HEARTS AND TEARS
Someone once said that intercessory prayer is impossible until we allow the things that break God's heart to break our hearts as well...
Luke 19:41-44 As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace--but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you."
Neh 1:3-11 They said to me, "Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire." (4) When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven
Do we weep over our city, do we weep in prayer for the lost?
Keith Green ‘my eyes are dry’:
My eyes are dry
My faith is old
My heart is hard
My prayers are cold
And I know how I ought to be
Alive to You and dead to me
But what can be done
For an old heart like mine
Soften it up
With oil and wine
The oil is You, Your Spirit of love
Please wash me anew
With the wine of Your Blood
Heb 5:7 During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.
Heb 8:1 The point of what we are saying is this: We do have such a high priest, who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven,
[1Jn 2:1 My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defence--Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.]
Rom 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express
We pray that our hearts are broken for the things that breaks God’s heart
Mat 5:44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you
‘True, whole prayer is nothing but love’ – St Augustine
ARE YOU IN TROUBLE? PRAY… the power will come
Jas 5:13 Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
We have already seen that when Nehemiah got the bad news, he prayed!
Act 4:23-35 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. (24) When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God…
… Some did not
Amo 4:9 "Many times I struck your gardens and vineyards, I struck them with blight and mildew. Locusts devoured your fig and olive trees, yet you have not returned to me," declares the LORD.
Isa 43:22 "Yet you have not called upon me, O Jacob, you have not wearied yourselves for me, O Israel
2Ch 7:13-15 "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, (14) if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. (15) Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.
Jer 33:3 ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.'
Heb 4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Ask for Rain, Carry Umbrella
Dr. Guthrie, that great Scotch preacher, prayed in the morning service for rain. As he went to church in the afternoon, little Mary, his daughter, said, "Here is the umbrella, Papa." "What do we need it for?" he asked. "You prayed for rain this morning, and don't you expect God will send it?" They carried the umbrella, and when they came home they were glad to take shelter under it from the drenching storm.
PRAY AND DO NOT GIVE UP:
Luke 18:1 He said, to teach us that we "ought always to pray and not give up"
1Th. 5:17 "Pray without ceasing"
When asked the secret of his spiritual power, Charles Spurgeon said: "Knee work! Knee work!"
Pray as you can not as you can’t…
Eph 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
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