Glimpses of Our God Lesson 10 The Promise of Prayer.
Post on 28-Dec-2015
Glimpses of Our GodLesson 10The Promise of Prayer
Memory TextPsalm 55:17 (NKJV)Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice.What can we learn about prayer from this verse penned by David?Were Davids heartfelt prayers always answered the way he wanted? (2 Sam 12: 16-18)
Definition of PrayerHow would you define prayer?How do our prayers get to God? (Rom 8:26)How do His answers get back to us?
Benefits of PrayerWhere will the Spirit lead us as He intercedes between us and God? (John 16:13)What is Gods will for us? (1 Tim 2:4)How important is prayer in becoming a Christian?How important is prayer to remaining a Christian?
Benefits of PrayerPs 91:15-16 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.Jer 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.Eph 3:20 Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or thinkJames 4:2 ye have not, because ye ask not.James 5:15 the prayer of faith shall save the sick,James 5:16 The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
Jesus on PrayerMatt 7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:Matt 18:19 if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them.Matt 21:22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.John 14:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do.
Fixed or FlexibleFrom what you read in the Bible, does it sound to you like the future is fixed or does prayer change things?What glimpse of the nature of God does this give you?
Conditions to Answered PrayerPsalm 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:1 John 5:14 if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:John 9:31Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him.James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.1 John 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, that your prayers be not hindered.
Answered & Unanswered PrayerWhat prayer can we count on God to always answer, especially for sinners? (1 John 1:9)How should we deal with unanswered prayer?Lets say were praying for a friend to recover from cancer and he dies, or a daughter to have a safe trip and her plane crashes.
SummaryOur glimpse of God this week reveals a God who wants to communicate with us and have a relationship with us.He has given us prayer so that we can communicate with Him in thought, meditation, spoken words, writing, poetry, and song.He has given us the Holy Spirit to intercede for us: to take our thoughts and words to God and Gods thoughts and words to us.
SummaryThe Spirit leads us into all truth: to Gods Word as truth and to Jesus as the Truth, and prayer is essential to receiving the Holy Spirit.Without prayer, we cannot even begin the Christian life by asking for forgiveness nor can we grow in grace and have a love relationship with the Lord. Every relationship requires time and communication.
SummaryThe Bible is clear that prayer changes things: The future is flexible rather than fixed.God gives us the freedom of choice to actually determine the countless details of our lives and, most of all, our eternal destiny. Will you trust the Lord today to answer your prayer for forgiveness and use this means of grace to build an everlasting relationship with Him?
Q1. Question 1 When should we pray?1. Morning, noon, and evening encompass the entire day. We can come to God at any time, morning, noon, or night. God has no office hours, He is always there for us.How should we pray?2. A cry aloud speaks of prayer in earnestness. Prayer must be from the heart. God hears a heartfelt prayer, not rote repetition or vain babblings.3. In the sermon on the Mt. Jesus said:Matthew 6:7-10 (KJV)7But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. 8Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. 9After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 4. After warning us about vain repetition Jesus gives us the Lords prayer and what do we do with it? 5. The Roman Catholics mix it in with 5 Hail Marys and vainly repeat it in the rosary.6. God is not looking for many words, but for sincere, thoughtful, humble, heartfelt words.7. The Lords prayer was intended to be an outline of the type of things we should pray for, not a prayer to be repeated mindlessly.8. For me, there is an advantage to praying out loud or at least in a whisper: it keeps my thoughts organized and keeps my mind from wandering. As I hear my words, it gives me confidence that I really mean what I am saying.What should we believe when we pray?9. David had no question that God heard his voice. Neither should we.
Q2.2 Samuel 12:16-18 (NIV)16 David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and went into his house and spent the nights lying on the ground. 17 The elders of his household stood beside him to get him up from the ground, but he refused, and he would not eat any food with them. 18 On the seventh day the child died.1. Here is a case where David pleaded with God to save the baby born of Bathsheba, but the baby died. God said no to his prayer.2. Paul prayed three times that the thorn in his flesh be removed, but God said no, my grace is sufficient for you for my strength is made perfect in weakness.3. Our prayers, too, may go unanswered.What should we do when our prayers go unanswered or are answered with a no?1. After Davids child died, the Bible says he got up, washed, dressed, and went into the house of the Lord and worshipped.2. When Pauls thorn in the flesh wasnt removed he used it as a reminder of his own weakness and of the power of God.3. Dont give up. Trust in God to bring good out of every difficulty or tragedy. Romans 8:28 (NASB)28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 4. Keep on loving God. Keep on trusting Him. Worship Him anyway. The end is all good for those who love Him.Q1.1. Probably the definition that we have heard most often is that prayer is talking to God as to a friend. But is there something more that we can add.2. Is it possible to pray without talking?3. Perhaps a more basic definition is that Prayer is simply communication with God. This can be through spoken words, written words, thoughts, meditation, or song.4. Some of the most beautiful prayers are written prayers because we can take the time to compose and refine them.5. Prayer can be as simple as a God-ward thought. Or it can be a whole series of thoughts as we focus on God and put ourselves in His presence and care.6. Hymns and songs can be prayers. 7. I Surrender All is a prayer hymn. All to thee my blessed Savior, I surrender all.8. Have Thine Own Way Lord is a prayer. Just as I Am is another. There are many. What a beautiful way to pray: sing a hymn to the Lord.
Q2.Romans 8:26 (NKJV)26Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 1. God the Holy Spirit is everywhere present. In fact, our bodies are His temple.2. Every word and every thought is understood by the Holy Spirit.3. Even when we cant express our feelings in words, the HS can express them for us.4. The Spirit intercedes on our behalf and through Him we communicate with the Father and the Son.
Q3.1. God can speak to us in a number of ways: through His word, through Christian friends, through circumstances (open and closed doors), and most directly through the Holy Spirit.2. Prayer should not be just unidirectional. It should be bidirectional. We should ask for the Holy Spirit to fill us and communicate Gods word to us.3. In prayer, dont be afraid to stop and listen for a response from the Spirit of God.
Q1.John 16:13 (NKJV)13However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 1. Isnt that beautiful? The Spirit will guide us into all truth and will communicate the will of the Father and Son to us.2. What is truth? Jesus said, sanctify them through thy truth; thy word is truth. The HS will guide us into the truth of Gods word that it might be a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.3. The Spirit will lead us to Jesus that we might be saved in His kingdom. 4. Jesus said in John 16:14 that the Spirit would take the things of Jesus and make them known to us.5. So God communicates the truth about Jesus as our Savior through the Spirit and the Word of God.
Q2.1 Timothy 2:4 (KJV)4 [God] Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.1. Gods will for every man is to be saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth.2. The Spirit is given to lead us into the truth as it is in Jesus.3. So when you pray, listen for the Spirit, ask Him to fill you, ask him to lead you to what God wants in your life.4. Ask for repentance, ask for the gifts of the Spirit and the fruit of the Spirit. 5. Prayer enables the HS to work in your life.
Q3.1. Without prayer it is impossible to become a Christian.2. In order to be justified we must be forgiven. This requires prayer.3. In order to be forgiven we must confess our sins, repent of them, and ask God to forgive us. This requires prayer.3. In order for God to place our sins on Christ and forgive them by His blood, we must receive Him as our Savior and Lord. This requires prayer.4. Without prayer, we cannot take the first step toward becoming a Christian.
Q4.1. Prayer is just as essential in remaining a Christian.2. Every day we still need to confess our sins, our sinfulness, our fallen-ness, our character flaws, our love of sin.3. Growing in grace is all about falling more in love with Jesus each day.4. Any love relationship requires communication and time. 5. Taking time each morning for prayer has made a tremendous difference in my Christian experience.6. The branches must abide in the vine. We abide by maintaining a living connection with Jesus through the Word and prayer that leads to surrender and obedience.
The clear teaching of these texts is that prayer brings about things that would not happen without prayer.Q1.1. Prayer changes things.2. We considered Hezekiahs prayer last week where Isaiah delivered to him the message that he was going to die.3. His prayer resulted in 15 more years of life.4. Prayer is the key in the hand of faith that unlocks the blessings of heaven, that allows God to act on our behalf.5. Our prayer of confession and repentance and acceptance of Jesus as our Savior changes our destiny from eternal death to eternal life.6. Our destiny is not fixed in eternity past, it is determined by the choices that we make, and those choices really affect the future.
Q2.1. This indicates to me that God does not fix all the details of the future but allows room for our free choices including our choice to pray and our choice to receive Jesus as our Savior.2. This indicates that God works with an open future rather than a closed one.3. He does not predetermine the future in all its detail by predestination, nor is the future fixed by His perfect foreknowledge of it.4. Rather He is acting in history to work out his plans for His creation while at the same time allowing his creatures to make free choices that also determine the future in their sphere of influence.5. While no one can thwart the plans of God and cause His prophecies to fail, we can still make free choices that determine our own destiny. God can always work around our choices.6. This means that God experiences the future in time as we do. All heaven, including God, rejoices over one sinner that repents. Our choices add information to the mind of God. 7. It says also that God did not foreordain all the tragedies of life. The holocaust was not part of the divine plan. Accidents, disease, and death are a result of sin, Satan, the curse, and the wrong choices we make.8. God goes through the tragedies of life with us and promises to work all things together for good if we love Him.9. Our choice to pray has an effect on God. It adds something to His experience that would not be there if we chose not to pray.10. So God can remain sympathetic and loving to us as the future unfolds and He experiences it with us. 11. God experiences our choices when we make them, not in eternity past. Q1.1 John 1:9 (KJV)9If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.1. The prayer of confession, repentance, and acceptance of Jesus as Savior and Lord will always be heard.2. By prayer we confess Jesus as our Savor and Lord before the Father in heaven.Romans 10:9 (KJV)9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.3. This is the most important answer to prayer. This determines our eternal destiny. 4. In the light of eternal salvation in response to our prayers, every unanswered prayer fades from view.
Q2.1. First realize that God is not responsible for evil, suffering, and death. He created a world that He called very good, and He will re-create a world that is very good.2. In the meantime we suffer under the curse of sin and the influence of Satan. We are caught in the middle of a great controversy between good and evil.3. There are certain rules of engagement in this battle between Christ and Satan. 4. While God is able, at times, to work miracles in response to prayer, that is the rare exception rather than the norm.5. If God answered every prayer for a miracle, there would be no death, no suffering, no pain, no tears, no sorrow. In effect, we could reverse the curse by prayer.6. Gods plan is that we remember what it is like to live under the curse so that, in eternity, we will never again entertain the idea of rebellion against God.7. So dont be discouraged that you prayers for miracles are not often answered.8. Remember the promises of God and continue to trust in Him.9. He has promised to never leave you or forsake you (Heb 13:5). He has promised to...