Sun Am Worship "Prayer"
Text: Eph 6:18 (King James Version)
"Father, I am your servant, willing and desiring to be used to bless your people."
Eph 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication
in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for
Mr. Spurgeon once preached what in his judgment was one
of his poorest sermons. He stammered and floundered, and when he got through he
felt that it had been a complete failure. He was greatly humiliated, and when he
got home he fell on his knees and said, "Lord, God, Thou canst do something with
nothing. Bless that poor sermon."
And all through the week he uttered that prayer. He woke up in the night and prayed about it. He determined that the next Sunday he would redeem himself by preaching a great sermon.
Sure enough, the next Sunday the sermon went off beautifully. At the close the people crowded about him and covered him with praise. Spurgeon went home pleased with himself, and that night he slept like a baby. But he said to himself, "I'll watch the results of those two sermons."
What were they? From the one that had seemed a failure he was able to trace forty-one conversions. And from that magnificent sermon he was unable to discover that a single soul was saved. Spurgeon's explanation was that the Spirit of God used the one and did not use the other. We can do nothing without the Spirit who helps our infirmities.
We can not do God's work without the help of the Holy Spirit's. You might say this is not true. You might say that you can do anything you want to do. That may be true, but you cannot fix your frailties, your sickness or you ill-health using your own power.
Spurgeon thought that his first message that came from
his heart was not too impressive and wasn't worth much. He was disappointed
because his presentation was unacceptable according to his standards.
Spurgeon thought he would prepare a really good message based on his way of thinking along with what he thought people wanted to hear. He did this and his presentation was flawless. He was proud of himself.
After the message people crowded around him and spoke many complimentary words to him. I believe the Holy Spirit spoke to him giving him the idea to wait and see how many souls were saved by each message.
To his surprise, forty-one people accepted Jesus as their own personal Lord and Savior after hearing the first message that Spurgeon thought was not well-done while no one accepted Jesus upon hearing the polished message.
Why was this? What happened? The polished message brought many positive comments from people while the first message seemed to be unworthy. Spurgeon Prayed and asked God to bless the first message which He did. The Holy Spirit stirred the souls of the people and they saw the need to accept Jesus, trust Him, obey Him and let Him control their life.
God can take what little we have and make it work miracles. Our speech does not have to be elaborate to tell others of Jesus. Our knowledge does not have to be that of a Harvard scholar. Our presentation need not be perfect according to speech techniques.
If our heart is sincere, God will take what we have to share and through the work of the Holy Spirit will move those people who are searching to fill the empty place in their heart. We are merely vessels spreading the Gospel message that will give God the glory and honor which is His.
Today is Pentecost Sunday. Pentecost is fifty days after Passover. Jesus was crucified during Passover and rose after Passover which we call Resurrection Sunday. He remained with the disciples for forty days and then ascended to Heaven.
The Holy Spirit appeared ten days after the ascension. So, the Holy Spirit was made available to people fifty days after Jesus' resurrection.
This is what we know and celebrate as Pentecost
Prayer is the activating force to a Holy God response!
There are all kinds of prayer, there is a prayer to fit each particular situation or condition.
There is public prayer- Private prayer Individual Prayer- Corporate prayer. Long prayers, Short prayers, Standing prayers - Sitting down prayers
Laying on your face prayers, While you walk prayers
The prayer of faith, The prayer of petition, The prayer of intercession
The prayer of submission, The prayer of repentance
It is clear from Pauls writings under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, That Prayer is vital for the believer to be successful in spiritual warfare.
**The true believer hasn't even begun to fight until he learns to pray)
Prayer is not simply an afterthought to the believers arsenal of spiritual weapons, Prayer is in fact the way that the believer implements his spiritual weapons against the enemy.
It is through faith that we appropriate our armor and our spiritual weapons, but it through prayer that they are implemented (put into action).
*For many Christians prayer is their last resort (Only when all else fails pray)
*For others it is only a way of getting things from God (getting their needs met)
But for these who have understood the armor of God and it's purpose, prayer becomes a mighty weapon in itself.
E.m. Bounds says: Prayer is the great, universal force to advance God's cause;
Not to pray is a denial of God, a denial of his existence, a denial of his nature and a denial of his purposes toward mankind.
He farther says: Praying men are the only men in which the Holy Spirit dwells, for the Holy Spirit and prayer go hand-in-hand. The Holy Spirit never descends upon prayerless men. He never fills them, he never empowers them.
There is nothing
in common between the Spirit of God and men who do not pray. The Spirit dwells only in a prayer
*It was when Jesus came up out of the water Praying that the Holy Spirit came upon him.
*It was in a prayer mtg. That the new testament Church was birthed)
Acts 1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
*It was through prayer the gospel of Jesus Christ was Launched)
Acts 6:4 But we will give ourselves continually to
prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
*It was through prayer that the gentile outcasts were brought into the fellowship of the inheritance of the saints.)
Cornelius was praying in his house and an angel appeared to him & told him to send for Peter.
Peter was praying and saw a vision, At the same time the men Cornelius sent for him were knocking at the gate, The Spirit said (go with them nothing doubting for I have sent them.
Because Cornelius prayed and Because Peter Prayed,
We are in the Kingdom today, But what happens from this point on is left up to our prayers.
Jesus went from place to prayer, from place to prayer, from place to prayer and only in between he cast out devils healed the sick and raised the dead.
(Jesus life and earthen ministry was saturated with prayer)
What is the cost of obtaining the Holy Ghost
Story: "Holy Ghost Power"
It costs much to obtain the power of the Spirit. It costs self-surrender and humiliation and the yielding up of the most precious things to God.
It cost the perseverance of long waiting and the faith
of strong trust. But when we are really in that power we shall find this
difference, that whereas before it was hard for us to do the easiest things, not
it is easy for us to do the hardest things.
James Hervey, the friend of the Wesleys at Oxford describes the change which took place in him through his anointing by the Spirit: that while his preaching was once like the firing of an arrow, all the speed and force thereof depending on the strength of his arm in bending the bow, now it was like firing a rifle-ball, the whole force depending upon the powder back of the ball, and needing only a finger-touch to let it off.
Jesus is telling us the same thing today that He told His disciples: "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth" (Acts 1:8).
A believer who has accepted the armor of God but does not pray, is just a person who is all dressed up with no place to go.
Paul tells us that as we take the shield of faith and the sword of the spirit it is to be done in the spirit of Prayer.
*It is this spirit =Heart attititude and disposition and lifestyle of prayer that qualifies us to use the sword of the spirit.
This clearly tells us that we are expected to use the
sword of the spirit in and through the spirit of prayer.
#1 No one is properly prepared to use the sword of the spirit who has not had their hearts and minds prepared through prayer.
#2 No one can bring to you the words of the spirit who has not been in fellowship with the spirit through prayer.
Ecc 10:10 If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct. (If any man lack wisdom let him ask= pray)
The sword in the hand of a prayer less man or woman is as dangerous as a machine gun in the hand of a 3yr old, It can be a means of mass destruction.
But the sword of the spirit in the hands of a praying man or woman, can break satanic bondage, open the eyes of the blind, bring healing to sick bodies, open doors that have been closed, close demonic doors that have been opened, shake nations and set up the kingdom of God in the earth.
*Men of power in the earth have always been men of prayer.
We saw Elijah on Mt Carmel as he called down fire from the sky, and the heavens opened and gave rain, but did we forget that Elijah on Carmel was the product of Elijah in the closet.
James 5:17-18 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
In the spirit: All of our praying regardless of the kind it is, is to be done in the power of the Spirit and by the direction of the Spirit.
#1 To pray in the spirit one must be in the spirit of Prayer, and that starts by accepting prayer as a God given privilege and responsibility.
No one will pray in the Spirit until prayer is important to them,
#2 To pray in the Spirit is to pray with a definite dependence upon the Holy Spirits power
All prayer to be effective must be offered in and through the Spirit and directed by the Spirit.
Certainly praying in tongues is a powerful element of spiritual praying, but the primary purpose of praying in tongues is to build up my inner man that I might be more effective in my warfare for my brothers and sisters.
Through prayer we are kept in a condition of spiritual alertness, our senses are kept sharp and alive, we do not allow the enemy to gain advantage against us through spiritual slumber.
*With all perseverance and supplication for all saints:
Through prayer we are given an overview concerning our brothers and sisters,
we are able to see where they are weak, and through
prayer we are able to intercede and fight for them until they regain their
We should pray for all saints everywhere that they would receive a revelation of all that God has provided for them through Christ.
We should pray for the ministry, (pastors, teachers, evangelists, apostles, prophets,) That they can speak boldly and proclaim the liberating truths of the gospel.
For prayer to be effective it must be offered In: Humility, Faith, Obedience, Righteousness, Whole heartedness.
*Prayer is a mighty weapon in the believers life.
The most powerful yet impotent force in the earth is prayer (It is the most powerful when it is utilized & The most impotent when it is neglected.
The greatest structure that we can build in America is
not to rebuild the world trade center, It's not in new york. It's In every city,
and in every church and in every Home
It's the structure called the altar.
It wasn't torn down by terrorists attack, There is no terrorist that could destroy the altar, It was torn down through neglect, and decay, and rejection, in favor of a more comfortable and less painful and humiliating way,. The mentality is this!
(Only Humble people can pray) (Only weak people can pray) (Only Poor people can pray) Only Helpless people can pray. Only needy people can pray.
I do not need God
The Greatest sin of America is pride.
It's not a symbol of national pride that we need in America today, It's a symbol of national humility and total dependence upon God, It's the old fashioned Out dated Place called the altar.
2 Chron 7:14
If my people, which are called by my name, shall 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