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Praying at All Times

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
October 29, 2021 4:00 am

Praying at All Times

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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October 29, 2021 4:00 am

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Father, we as a prayer request is a safe pray for me. I'm in jail. Pray for me. This chain limits is running the rock River. My right leg know what he says is pray for me that this may be given to me that I may have insurance to speak the mystery of the gospel. In other words, pray for me.

When Satan and for me to shut my mouth win out over temptation cost more and practice their course. That's not to say Christians aren't committed to prayer, but you probably have to admit that you failed at some point to follow the biblical command to pray without ceasing to make prayer a constantly flowing element of your life. But realistically, how you do that is Paul simply saying you need to pray a lot or are you supposed to talk to God literally every minute of every day.

Today on grace to you. Explore with John MacArthur. The link between constant prayer and the powerful protection against spiritual attacks that God provides.

It's all part of John series titled the believers armor so turn to Ephesians chapter 6 verse 18, and John begins right there before all prayer four times all is a this is so great. Each piece put on with prayer. Prayer pervades the wheel hard and we do is the all-encompassing element of our lives.

That's why I say it is the air we breathe. There's no time in our lives when we should not be in prayer, but first of all, the frequency of prayer will take diesels one at a time.

The frequency of prayer verse 18, praying always.

When we pray always, always, whatever you see in life ascends to God in a prayer because the communion is so open. Second, we see not only the frequency of prayer, but the second, all shows us the variety of prayer praying always with all prayer and supplication all prayer and supplication word prayer.

Simple word just generally means requests press okay prayer in general conversation. The word supplication basis. It means a specific so there are general the general area. Prayer we pray, more generally, we pray specifically but notice we are with all prayer and all will supplication to be praying at all times.

What is he mean by all prayer and all supplication simply all kinds is older ways to break what everything become a prayer and so does Paul say to Timothy in first Timothy 28. I will the men pray everywhere we study the prayers of the Bible you find there were all kinds of prayers and all kinds of positions all kinds of time. The way of life.

Soldiers praying at all times so that whenever the battle comes even if it's a surprise attack. He's ready. He has the kind of a life that's open up to God totally listen, I'm ever going to pass.

His comments are some of the staff and the guy got up and he preached on the fact we are pray in the morning and I mean he prays we are to pray in the morning and he went every passage like Psalm 63 early will I seek the old God and he went to the guys who prayed in the morning and here they were in the morning and we are to pray in the morning is rates are in all time is Teresa and I kept looking up all the Scriptures to talk about praying in evening and a new, and so for the soul. I mean yeah good point. We are pray in the morning but not to the exclusion of any other time. Even Psalm 5517 says, evening and morning and it will I pray in Daniel pray three times a day and of Jesus. Luke 612 says he continued all night in prayer and first Timothy 55 says the widows prayed night and day is a way of life. Prayer in a sense, beloved is more important than knowledge.

And that's a good word for us here in a sense, it's a more important element than knowledge Martin Lloyd Jones is our ultimate position as Christians is tested by the character of our prayer life. You may have a lot of knowledge you may be a seminary student or seminary graduate minister, a pastor, a missionary, and Bible teacher but your prayer life will be a monitor on how really deep your knowledge of God and your relationship to him is why I say that for this reason, listen theology listen is ultimately the knowledge of God right. Theology is the is the knowledge of God. So the more theology I know the more I know about God. And the more I know about God, the more I ought to be Jews even as the psalmist said to follow close behind it and if I say I have all this knowledge but I am not driven to be in his presence all my waking hours that it's questionable the effect that knowledge is out of my life is that they may know thee the only true God and Jesus Christ whom thou has sent that I study is that I want to learn the word that I may know God, the more I know and the more I want to be in his presence. And if you know all of that but you don't, hunger and thirst to be in his presence, and your life is not an open communication line to him every waking moment and it's questionable that your theology has had the proper effect see them.

We are to pray at all times all kinds of prayers as our lives are open to God.

As I said he wants us to know and because fellowship is the end result you have that fellowship is your life a constant prayer or a cleansing thing that is thirdly, we see not only the frequency of prayer in the kinds of prayer. The variety of prayer, but the manner of prayer. Thirdly, he says, watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication.

In other words, we are watched with all perseverance and again you see the idea of perseverance. We need to stick to it. This dad to hang in there to continue to persevere, pray continuously while watching prayers to be alert to the issue alert to what's happening. Jesus said, watch and pray many times. First Peter 47 watch under prayer. You can't pray properly unless you see what's going on when you come to the place where your heart is filled with prayer. It'll be because you see so many things going on. I I was praying with my wife last night we were talking about the fact that it's hard nowadays to pray, not because you don't know what to pray for, but because are so much you don't know you know what the put your arms around and we live in it.

They have tremendous communication I get mail from radio listeners, people and mission fields from all over the place. There's so many things that sometimes I just say Lord God, I I don't even know what to say to you, other than read the prayer list know not can't I used to try to keep a prayer list and write things down and it just became it's just monstrous. I still do that which is monstrous.

I can't even begin to listen to five pray without ceasing. I couldn't pray for all the things that are in my heart to pray for, but I have to keep watching and I have to be alert so that I can see the needful thing I want to pray specifically because and got answer specifically that I give him specific glory as John 1413 and 14 you ask anything in my name and I'll do it that the father may be glorified God answers with specifics and we give him glory.

Watch the alert know what's going on in the people around you. By the way, the term watch tells us a little bit also were looking out rather than in we know our own problems is not what we need to spend our time in prayer where we need to spend our time and prayers with other people looking out watching seeing their needs and I'll tell you what kills this selfishness. Franco give you a simple illustration. Most of us never really get serious about prayer until something happens in our own lives. The troubles we are 10 times more intense about our own problems, then we are not anybody else's.

And that shows the self-centeredness that we have to look can you lose yourself in the in the needs of others like the deer possible could you say I prayed for you night and day with tears of your pray for anybody night and day with tears. You may elect a few of your own troubles, but I doubt whether many of us have done that over somebody else that shows the self-centeredness of the human heart, even a regenerate believer. We are to process car. Teresa said is be persevering intense continuing steadfastly watching and praying being alert to the needs of others and by the way, I can adhere get past the physical know we pray grant Martha's rheumatism somebodies heart problems and somebody's broken leg and somebody's surgery and I don't mind all that. But frankly folks on my prayer list. Those things come at the bottom. What I'm concerned about is the spiritual battle is the warfare and are the believers losing the battle. The physical in a sense, know it is material is immaterial. What gets my heart anxious is somebody is not seeing victory in their life. Somebody's not seeing God do his mighty work somebody who doesn't know what is the see the release of the power of the spirit of God. That's what that's what concerns my heart. I am praying for the advance of the kingdom of God in the lives of his people. I'm praying for souls to be one to Jesus Christ is very hard for me to put the top of my list the physical. Although I realize that that's a need in's and it has a tremendous effect upon our spiritual lives that comes secondary. What Paul is saying is this, look, here is the one you are and it is about the car that you must pray not easy for you to fight the battle and so I pray for you while I pray down and for people's physical things, but more than that, I pray that God will give you victory. I pray that you win the battle against the enemy.

I don't really care what happens in my physical body or yours. As long as we gain the victory for the glory of God. Amen. That's the battle that's the issue so we can concentrate on the thing that is most needful pencil father when he gives a prayer request is a safe pray for me. I'm in jail will pray for me. This chain limits is running the rock. Pray for my right leg know what he says is pray for me that this may be given to me that I may have insurance to speak the mystery of the gospel. In other words, pray for me that when Satan tempt me to shut my mouth win out over temptation and all speak the gospel. Pray that when the battle will beloved were to get involved in supplicating for each other persistently while we watch and see what the needs are. You really know the needs of the people around you know the spiritual needs of your spouse of your children of your friends of your neighbors are people in your Bible study people you know. Do you really pray for them as they fight the battle, sometimes all we ever do is pray.

When the disaster comes in maybe a little preventative prayer can help.

So we see the frequency of prayer always the variety of prayer.

All prayer and supplication.

The manner of prayer watching with all perseverance and finally the indirect objects of prayer, praying always for all Saints it says University and this is been led by led into bar last what were pray for each other know themselves to pray for ourselves that that is the priority. I just have a personal commitment to my own life and I want to push it off to anybody, but I just I don't pray for myself, I can hardly encompass all the things that are needful and I just never found the need to pray for me. I realize that I have needs and I do ask the Lord about sinful things and I do confess things in my life. But as far as concentrating on me. I am rather obedient at this point I trusted Scripture and praying for others than myself.

I get covered because others pray for me was so wonderful we give ourselves a pray for others. I met a guy one time he said to me said you know your ministries blessed me, I would put you on my prayer list for six months. I thought that's funny will have to do to get here but then as I begin to think about. I thought, well, that's a commitment he's made, bless his heart for that commitment to pray for me and I want to pray for him because all the six months I knew he was praying for me. I felt responsible to pray for him is if anything happened to him.

He stopped praying for me.

See, so this is the way the body grows in the love. This is the way to become one when we don't have to wait for our own trouble to pray, but we were lost in the needs of a solar to private praying for others. This is the body's prayer life of the apostle Paul illustrates it so will he always prayed for everybody else. For Samuel 1223 God forbid that I should sin against the Lord and ceasing to pray for you all worry about you. You pray for somebody else. Someone else pray for you and everybody gets covered right when one part of the physical body is ill. The rest of the body compensates directly and indirectly and so it is in prayer. Pray for each other six finger can't help itself. The rest of the body has to pump new life into that finger that wounded one that part of your anatomy. That's injured or whatever has to be supported by all the rest it can't support itself and its weakness. And so it is that we must pray for each other be concerned about that. You know that before the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in Barcelona and Madrid and other parts of Spain.

There were psychological clinics that had arisen all over the land of Spain and had large numbers of neurotics according to historians and these neurotics were undergoing a series of treatments for their neurosis. They were attended regularly by psychiatrists and so forth. And there were lots of outpatients in this. One historian said interestingly enough, they did a psychological and sociological study of the effects of the Spanish Civil War and all these people had personal problems and worries and anxieties and temptations, and they were involved in psychiatry and psychoanalysis and all the as soon as the Civil War came one of the first and most striking effects of the war was that it virtually emptied all psychological and psychiatric clinics in Spain how interest in.

One writer said these neurotic people were suddenly cured by a greater anxiety.

The anxiety about their whole life, whether their homes would still be there with her husband would be alive, where their children would be killed there greater anxieties got rid of the lesser ones and having to give attention to the bigger problem. They forgot their own petty problem want to be a healthy person and lose yourselves in the real things that matter the spiritual battles of other people lose yourselves, and consuming prayer for the kingdom of God and you won't have trouble with your little petty anxiety understand the same thing happened in Britain during the second world war, a greater fear drove out a lesser fear. I think it's needful for us to learn one of the reasons we have such as such as sick basketcase society. People run around with all kinds of sight go induce aches and pains and problems is simply because we are so totally self-centered you're really high I am.

But I consider myself to be somewhat patient use the somewhat just because some people might argue that what you know one thing it's hard for me to tolerate his people who are just totally consumed with all their own problems because it's such a manifestation of self-centeredness that is so foreign to the concept of of the Christian life.

We should be so lost in the needs of others that self manage what your little anxieties give way to greater once the spiritual battles of others. Well, there's one final thought in this verse 18.

And it's this. When you said it all. The frequency of prayer always variety of prayer. All prayer the manner of prayer watching so you know the needs with all perseverance. The indirect objects of prayer. All states but the pervasive thought is in the middle of the verse. We are to pray in the spirit in the spirit. Now please beloved.

This does not have anything to do with speaking in tongues. He is not talking about you cannot introduce tongues into this verse. In June 20 it says, praying in the Holy Spirit is not telling about some ecstatic language praying in the spirit is the same as praying in the name of Christ is praying inconsistency with who he is and what his will is learn to pray in concert with the spirit make your prayers a duet with the one who ever intercedes for you. You know that Romans 826 says we know not what to pray for as we ought, but the spirit makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And God knows the mind of the spirit and he hears and answers listen. All the while you live the Christian life. The spirit of God within you praise on your behalf, and he always praise the right prayer and he always gets the right answer, so that verse 28 says all things work together for what were good. That's not an accident.

That's because the spirit is praying and praying in the spirit is simply lining up your own prayer, consistent with the mind and the will of the spirit is a how do you do that by simply walking in the fullness of the spirit as your life is filled with the spirit as you walk in the spirit in obedience to the spirit as you are walking close behind the Lord as you are constantly commuting in his presence.

The spirit of God will govern your thoughts so that your prayers will be in harmony with the spirit of God that's praying in the spirit. What a tremendous thing is to know that I can join my prayers with the spirit of God that I can cry from the depths of my heart because of the indwelling spirit both father and know that God hears and answers so the one over all pervasive qualification in our prayers is that we are to pray in the spirit. Fax Zechariah 1210 calls the Holy Spirit. The spirit of supplication, spirit of supplication.

It's no different than praying in Jesus name. In fact, the Holy Spirit is called the spirit of his son spirit of his son so beloved were to pray our lives would be open, commuting, and you know some this is such a healing thing all what a healing thing. It is so the frequency variety to manner the indirect objects all work to God's glory and to our joy as we pray, and Paul closes with a specific illustration I just read it to you. Simple, they want some specific to pray for verse 19.

Pray for me once I pray for Paul, that utterance may be given to me that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in bonds that in this I may speak boldly as I ought to speak. He says on the illustration. Pray for me.

Not my physical needs, but my battle my warfare. Pray that God will allow me to be bold and courageous and straightforward and give me utterance on this is the pattern beloved warfare was there Paul was facing the enemy nose to nose, eyeball to eyeball as he was a prisoner in room ambassadors had diplomatic immunity but not this ambassador. He was chained and there he was, and he says although the battle was tough. You know sometimes I want to quit. Sometimes I feel I'm losing my courage.

Pray for me that God will give me utterance, ride his coattails, I'm telling you, pray for the preacher and say well what are we to pray for you got a guys pray for Paul Lisa pray for Palm's got altogether. We are to pray for the people in the periphery. You just remember that if the guy in the lead, falls a whole lot of people are going with the and Paul was knowledgeable about the fact that the rest were as strong as their leader was in their pattern. Pray for me. He says that I may have boldness and utterance in my boldness. Maybe I'll gather some of the others around me and they too will have boldness and you know what he wrote. The Philippian letter.

After this the road and he said always said what's happened to me in jail has given greater boldness to others. See so's they prayed for him. He became a stronger example and it helped others pray for me's. And the point I want you to get is he pray he wanted to pray for a spiritual battle to be one and he would lose his courage and his boldness so you know I like to pray for other people will have any information that's why Paul added verse 2122, he says, but that you also may know, my affairs and how I do that you so beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord shall make known to you all think.

I don't expect you to pray for me. If you don't have any information someone to send my good friend to check us by the way, a dear friend of Paul's mentioned five times in the New Testament, who is the one who delivers the letter of Ephesians and also brings word about Paul. They were worried and concerned they didn't know what was going on his life and know how it was imprisoned and wanted to hear because I'm sending him and he'll give you all this information so you can really pray intelligently. Verse 22 I have sent him to you for the same purpose that you might know our affairs and that he might comfort your hearts.

Sorry I'm doing well and tell you where the battle lies and you can pray, listen, beloved, if were going to pray. Let's pray about spiritual things and let's open up our lives to each other so we have some to pray about right after community to share the struggle share the battle sure the victories so we can tear each other's chairs want a lesson on prayer we are to be God conscious, selfless, watchful Holy Spirit filled, persistent, bold people seeking only God's glory in our prayers and I believe as we live that kind of life and pray those kind of prayers will be more and more fitted into the image of Jesus Christ. As we pray for each other. The body will be built up and he will be glorified and thus the climax to the letter, Paul closes with the benediction to which I had nothing piece be to the brother, and love with faith, from God the father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, even that's John MacArthur here on Grace to you. John is the pastor of Grace Community Church in Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary today. He looked at how constant prayer is a key strategy to withstanding spiritual attack.

It's what empowers and activates the believer's armor. Now you know John, there may be people listening right now from the front lines of the spiritual battle there feeling a bit alone or overwhelmed may be new Christians, and maybe they're the only Christians and their families is the believer's armor that you been talking about is that all that those people need. I would say they need that.

But the apostle Paul ends by saying you need prayer that that's where it all culminates you need prayer, you know, I guess you could say these are the elements of our armor, but the collective application of those armor elements is totally dependent on divine power so praying always with all prayer is the message that's about as broadly as you could say praying all the time with all prayer so II think the believers armor as we draw the series to a close. Looking Ephesians 6. So important. The reality of the battle we all face how the enemy attacks the methods the enemy uses the spiritual weapons available to us, but then we wrap it up with the role of prayer in the prayer is what draws down divine power for living so this is been an incredibly important series. I think it's something you have to go back to time and time again to refresh your mind and your heart because soon we can become a little too confident in life a little too settled with the way things are and sometimes we lose that that battle ready mentality.

So my suggestion is that you would order the series it's available the entire series on the believers armor on a 12 CD album you need also to order the believers armor study guide and if you want to listen to the messages and download fashion. You can find them free IGT yes friend, I encourage you to get the believers armor study guide. It will take you deeper into all that John has been talking about in this series, you'll see how to fight discouragement what to do when you're tempted to doubt God's promises and how to make sure you're using and benefiting from the spiritual protection that God has given you to pick up the believers armor study guide or the audio series. Contact us today. Call toll-free 855 Grace or go to GT the believers armor study guide is the second volume and are relaunched study guide series. It costs $11 and shipping is free to purchase the believers armor study guide, call 855 Grace or go to GT Also, as John said, you can download all 12 messages from the believers armor free of charge in MP3 or transcript for further 12 CD album.

We also have that available now as we close a reminder that if you are regularly finding encouragement from this broadcast.

Let us know particularly your notes are more important than you know, they may help us measure our impact in your area.

Send your email to letters@TTY.once more that's letters now for John MacArthur on your host Phil Johnson be watching for Grace to you television this Sunday and then tune in next week when John shows you how to focus on what's most important.

This Christmas season glorifying Christ the real meaning of Christmas. That's John study and it starts Monday when another half hour of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time comes your way. Grace to you

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