The Purpose of The Church #6 “Prayer”


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The Purpose of The Church #6 “Prayer” Jeffery Anselmi

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The Purpose of The Church #6 “Prayer”

  1. 1. The Purpose of The Church#6“Prayer”<br />Jeffery Anselmi<br /><br />Purpose%20of%20The%20Church-%20Prayer%20by%20Jeffery%20Anselmi<br />
  2. 2. As we finish the purpose of the Church series, I hope that it has inspired some thinking from each one of us about what our purpose is and what we can do to better fulfill our purpose at the Lindley Christian Church.I want to finish this series with a purpose that does not seem like one that invokes a lot of excitement. It is an activity that every person no matter what his or her physical limitations are can do. <br />
  3. 3. This activity is a channel of blessings <br />for all who will use it.This purpose is prayer. <br />Everything that we do as individual Christians and as a church should be bathed in prayer.If prayer does not drive sin out of your life, sin will drive prayer out. <br />We feel that we just do not have time to pray. <br />
  4. 4. We are too busy to pray, and so we are too busy to have power. We have a great deal of activity but we accomplish little; many services but few conversions; much machinery but few results. (R. A. Torrey)<br />Other times we use prayer <br />only in an emergency.<br />
  5. 5. A young soldier who was fighting in Italy during World War II jumped into a foxhole just ahead of some bullets. He immediately tried to deepen the hole for more protection and was frantically scraping away the dirt with his hands. He unearthed something metal and brought up a silver crucifix, left by a former resident of the foxhole. A moment later another leaping figure landed beside him as the shells screamed overhead. <br />
  6. 6. When the soldier got a chance to look, he saw that his new companion was an army chaplain. Holding out the crucifix, <br />the soldier gasped, <br />&quot;Am I glad to see you! <br />How do you work this thing?“<br />
  7. 7. Prayer is important, Corrie Ten Boom ask us the question, “Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire? Too many times prayer is used as a spare tire instead of the steering wheel of our and the churches lives.What can we do to change this? Why should prayer be an important part of our lives? <br />
  8. 8. PRAYER SHOULD BE A PRIORITY FOR THE CHURCH BECAUSE… <br /> Jesus was devoted to prayer.Jesus put a priority on prayer.Luke 6:12 NET <br />Now it was during this time that Jesus went out to the mountain to pray, and he spent all night in prayer to God.<br />
  9. 9. Luke 5:16 NET <br />Yet Jesus himself frequently withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.<br />Matthew 14:23 NET<br />And after he sent the crowds away, he went up the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone.<br />
  10. 10. During His darkest hour, when He was about to be crucified, during His time of deepest need Jesus made time to pray. Luke 22:39 NET Then Jesus went out and made his way, as he customarily did, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.40When he came to the place, he said to them,&quot;Pray that you will not fall into temptation.&quot;<br />
  11. 11. 41He went away from them about a stone&apos;s throw, knelt down, and prayed,42&quot;Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me. Yet not my will but yours be done.&quot;43[Then an angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.<br />
  12. 12. 44And in his anguish he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.] 45 When he got up from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping, exhausted from grief. 46 So he said to them,&quot;Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you will not fall into temptation!&quot;<br />
  13. 13. Whenever Jesus did something or before <br />He did something He prayer to God. <br />Raising of Lazarus. <br />John 11:41 NET <br />So they took away the stone. Jesus looked upward and said,&quot;Father, I thank you that you have listened to me.<br />
  14. 14. How much prayer meant to Jesus! It was not only his regular habit, but his resort in every emergency, however slight or serious. When perplexed he prayed. When hard pressed by work he prayed. When hungry for fellowship he found it in prayer. He chose his associates and received his messages upon his knees. <br />
  15. 15. If tempted, he prayed. If criticized, he prayed. If fatigued in body or wearied in spirit, he had recourse to his one unfailing habit of prayer. Prayer brought him unmeasured power at the beginning, and kept the flow unbroken and undiminished. There was no emergency, no difficulty, no necessity, no temptation that would not yield to prayer. <br />(S. D. Gordon, Quiet Talks on Prayer. <br />Christianity Today, Vol. 30, no. 5)<br />
  16. 16. The early church was devoted to prayer.Acts 1:14 NET All these continued together in prayer with one mind, together with the women, along with Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers.<br />Acts 2:42 NETThey were devoting themselves to the apostles&apos; teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.<br />
  17. 17. The Leadership of the church was devoted to prayer also! <br />Acts 6:4 NET But we (Leaders of the church) will devote ourselves to prayer and to <br />the ministry of the word.&quot;<br />Romans 12:10 NET Be devoted to one another with mutual love, showing eagerness in honoring one another. 11 Do not lag in zeal, be enthusiastic in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, endure in suffering, persist in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints, pursue hospitality.<br />
  18. 18. Prayer is a way to show <br />devotion to someone.1 Thessalonians 5:17 NET <br />constantly pray,<br />Prayer should be a priority <br />because God hears us.Romans 8:26 NET In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness, for we do not know how we should pray, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with inexpressible groanings.<br />
  19. 19. 1 Peter 3:12 NET For the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous and his ears are open to their prayer.<br />But the Lord&apos;s face is against those who do evil.<br />James 5:16 NET So confess your sins to one another and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great effectiveness.<br />
  20. 20. Acts 10:1 NET Now there was a man in Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort.2He was a devout, God-fearing man, as was all his household; he did many acts of charity for the people and prayed to God regularly.<br />
  21. 21. 3 About three o&apos;clock one afternoon he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God who came in and said to him, &quot;Cornelius.&quot; 4 Staring at him and becoming greatly afraid, Cornelius replied, &quot;What is it, Lord?&quot; The angel said to him, &quot;Your prayers and your acts of charity have gone up as a memorial before God.<br />
  22. 22. Acts 10:31 NETand said, &apos;Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your acts of charity have been remembered before God.<br />Prayers were a memorial to God. WHY? Faith!Prayer is the channel from which blessings flow.Mark 11:24 NET For this reason I tell you, whatever you pray and ask for, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.<br />
  23. 23. Matthew 21:22 NET <br />And whatever you ask in prayer, <br />if you believe, you will receive.&quot;<br />John 16:24 NET Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive it, so that your joy may be complete.<br />Prayer is the phone line to God. <br />
  24. 24. Prayer is the key that unlocks all the storehouses of God’s infinite grace and power. All that God is, and all that God has, is at the disposal of prayer.(R. A. Torrey)<br />Prayer is a way to express thanksgiving to God. <br />
  25. 25. It is probable that in most of us the spiritual life is impoverished and stunted because we give so little place to gratitude. It is more important to thank God for blessings received than to pray for them beforehand. <br />
  26. 26. For that forward-looking prayer, though right as an expression of dependence upon God, is still self-centered in part, at least, of its interest; there is something we hope to gain by our prayer. <br />But the backward-looking act of thanksgiving is quite free from this. In itself it is quite selfless. <br />
  27. 27. Thus it is akin to love. All our love to God is in response to his love for us; it never starts on our side.<br />(William Temple, 3000 Quotations on Christian Themes) Christianity Today, Vol. 32, no. 17.<br />1 John 4:19 NET <br />We love because he loved us first.<br />
  28. 28. Philippians 4:6 NET Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, <br />tell your requests to God.<br />1 Timothy 2:1 NETFirst of all, then, <br />I urge that requests, prayers, intercessions, and thanks be offered on behalf of all people,<br />
  29. 29. We can have inner peace from prayer. HOPENotice that when things go bad, most people respond with prayer.<br />Philippians 4:6 NET Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.<br />
  30. 30. Colossians 3:15 NET Let the peace of Christ be in control in your heart (for you were in fact called as one body to this peace), and be thankful.16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and exhorting one another with all wisdom, singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, all with grace in your hearts to God.17And whatever you do in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.<br />
  31. 31. PRAYER SHOULD BE A PRIORITY BECAUSE OTHER PEOPLE NEED PRAYER. <br />People that we do not get a long with need our prayers.Matthew 5:44 NET But I say to you, love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you,<br />Luke 6:28 NET bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.<br />You cannot hate those you pray for. <br />
  32. 32. The sick need our prayers.James 5:14 NET Is anyone among you ill? He should summon the elders of the church, and they should pray for him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick and the Lord will raise him up — and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 So confess your sins to one another and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great effectiveness.<br />
  33. 33. Government and church leaders need our prayers.When Edward Everett Hale was chaplain of the U.S. Senate, someone asked him, &quot;Do you pray for the senators, Dr. Hale?&quot; He replied, &quot;No, I look at the senators and pray for the country.&quot;Acts 12:5 NET So Peter was kept in prison, but those in the church were earnestly praying to God for him.<br />
  34. 34. Hebrews 13:17 NET Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls and will give an account for their work. Let them do this with joy and not with complaints, for this would be no advantage for you.<br />
  35. 35. PRAY FOR THEM <br />1 Timothy 2:1 NET First of all, then, I urge that requests, prayers, intercessions, and thanks be offered on behalf of all people,2even for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.<br />
  36. 36. Other churches need our prayers.2 Corinthians 9:13 NET Through the evidence of this service they will glorify God because of your obedience to your confession in the gospel of Christ and the generosity of your sharing with them and with everyone.14With deep affection they will pray for you because of the extreme kindness that God has shown you.<br />
  37. 37. The lost need our prayers. <br />Israel in the context. Romans 10:1 NET Brothers and sisters, my heart&apos;s desire and prayer to God on behalf of my fellow Israelites is for their salvation.<br />1 Timothy 2:1 NET First of all, then, I urge that requests, prayers, intercessions, and thanks be offered on behalf of all people,2even for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.<br />
  38. 38. 3Such prayer for all is good and welcomed before God our Savior, 4 since he wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.<br />I believe that if we pray for those who are lost, we will make an even greater effort to reach them. <br />
  39. 39. Prayer is an important function of the church. I do not how many times I would tell a person who did not think they could do much that they could have a prayer ministry, usually the response is not very enthusiastic. Our failure to think of prayer as a privilege may be partly due to the fact that we can pray any time. The door to prayer is open so continuously that we fail to avail ourselves of an opportunity which is always there.<br />(Harry Emerson Fosdick, The Meaning of Prayer)<br />
  40. 40. If we tell someone to do something that seems hard or spectacular, we are more apt to do it than to do something as simple as prayer. Like art, like music, like so many other disciplines, prayer can only be appreciated when you actually spend time in it. Spending time with the Master will elevate your thinking. <br />
  41. 41. The more you pray, the more will be revealed. You will understand. You will smile and nod your head as you identify with others who fight long battles and find great joy on their knees.(Joni Eareckson Tada) When we don’t pray, <br />it’s primarily because <br />we don’t sense our need for God.No man should be alone <br />when he opposes Satan.<br />
  42. 42. The church and the ministry of the Word were instituted for this purpose, that hands may be joined together and one may help another. If the prayer of one doesn’t help, the prayer of another will.<br />(Martin Luther, “Martin Luther-The Early Years,”) Christian History, no. 34.Do you use prayer as a spare tire instead of the steering wheel?<br />