Welcome to the Kerwin Baptist Church broadcast today. Our desire is for the Word of God to be spread throughout the world so that all may know Christ.
Join us now for a portion of one of our services here at Kerwin Baptist Church, located in Kernersville, North Carolina. If you're going to deal with the Lord's Prayer, you've got to deal with the Scripture before it, the Scripture during it, and the Scripture after it to really be able to completely understand the Lord's Prayer. And as we begin to deal with that, you have to set the scene where the disciples say, Lord, teach us to pray. And then when God gives what we call the Lord's Prayer.
And, you know, probably next week, I prayer. We call it the Lord's prayer because the Lord gave that example, but what it was, he was giving that example for them to pray. So it's really a prayer that we should be praying, and it's not that we are supposed to pray those exact words, it's an example to us. And if we're talking about prayer, and we've been preaching on prayer for a while, I think it would be good to take God's example that he gave us, and how we should pray. But what created the stage for the disciples to be taught how to pray?
Look at Matthew chapter 6, and I kind of want to speak on this subject tonight. Problem or power? Problem or power?
Now you got to hear me out. Prayer can give you power, but prayer can also sometimes be a problem. And we're going to look at this and see when is it that prayer becomes a problem in your life.
And not that it's a problem that you're praying, it's a problem in how you're praying. Notice if you would, Matthew chapter 6, and this of course is a Sermon on the Mount as we call it. Look at verse 1, take heed. Now those are two very strong words in the Greek. It means this, you better listen to what I'm getting ready to say. It was a very nice political way to say listen. That ye do not your alms or prayers before men to be seen of them, otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
Let me just stop right there. That's a serious thing when God says that if we do this particular thing you will not receive a reward from your Father in heaven. The whole point of prayer is to receive that reward from the Father, amen. The whole reason we're praying is because we need something from Him. We need Him to do it. He's our Father.
He's who we go to. So I want my prayers to have power. But if God says something that's going to prevent those prayers not only from having power but to have any kind of impact at all, I want to know what it is.
And this is what He says. Take heed that you do not give your alms, pray your prayers to be seen of men. Notice if you would, verse 2, therefore when thou doest thine alms do not sound a trumpet before thee as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have the glory of men.
Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth. In other words, it should be that personal and private, your time with the Lord. Our prayer should have no motive whatsoever to get the glory from men. Let me say it this way, anything we do should not be done so that it would make people think higher of us. That's why God says that all the glory belongs to the Father. So that means everything in our life should not be done so that people would admire us or think higher of us. And let's be honest, all of us are just sinful enough that that is very easy for us to do.
To do things in our life almost it can almost become a habit. We don't even realize we're doing it, but we're really doing it not for the Lord, but for the glory of men. So that they would think, hey there's a great Christian, hey there's a, I mean that's a really good person, boy they're really doing some things for God.
And we've got to be careful. That's when prayer can become a problem. Now notice if you would, verse 4, that thine alms may be in secret, and thy father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men.
Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet. When thou has shut thy door, pray to thy father which is in secret, and thy father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions as the heathen do, for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them, for your father knoweth what things ye have need of before we ask him. Now he is getting ready in the following verses to begin to give them the model or the example to follow in prayer.
So you and I have got to understand this. The Lord's Prayer was part of God teaching, number one, how not to pray. And then he gives the model prayer, the Lord's Prayer, to teach us how to pray.
So prayer can do one of two things. It can be a problem or it can be powerful. Now I want you to notice you have on your outline what are some possible problems. Now he described all this in the first eight verses.
So what are some possible problems? Well obviously the first thing is this, prayer can express selfishness if you are not careful. Now listen to me, Dr. John Phillips in one of his commentaries, I really like this and I copied this off right here because I wanted to read this to you. Now listen to me, we must be careful in prayer because our sin nature can follow us right into the throne room.
Nothing is safe from our sinfulness. Look at me dear friends, we could be doing the right thing in praying but do it the wrong way. Literally our selfish motives and our self glorificating motives can literally enter our prayer life.
Am I the only one that is that? My flesh is capable of that. And you and I have got to be careful to understand that hey I've got to make sure I'm looking at myself and make sure that selfishness doesn't enter the throne room with me when I go to the Father. Now listen to me, you say how does that happen? Notice really under that there is the thing of this, prayer can express selfishness focusing on self.
You say, no what does that mean? Well oftentimes, and we're guilty of this, in our public meeting, in our corporate worship we would call it, oftentimes let's say we open up our service in prayer, we pray for the offering, whatever the case might be, and David Polly sitting right down here and let's just say you know we just sang a song on a Sunday morning and I say David would you come up and pray? And David comes up you know would you lead us to the Lord in prayer?
Do you know what you and I sometimes do? We literally focus on the one who is praying when that happens. You say well what do you mean preacher? How many times has somebody been praying and maybe they mumble a word or say something out of place and later on somebody will come up and say I heard you praying, that was funny you know kind of a thing and you messed up there or something.
Why are you even listening? Okay listen, like if David Polly comes up to open us up in prayer on a Sunday morning, he is leading in prayer, but you and I are to be praying to the Father during that and we are not to focus on the individual behind this pulpit praying. If you sit and don't pray and you're just listening to what he would have to say and when he says something right yeah that's right amen you know kind of thing.
Wait a minute, that's not what really should be happening. What should be happening is while he's praying you and I should be praying to the Father. During an opening of a church service, if I have David Polly come up here and open up in prayer while he's praying you should be Lord. Now Lord forgive me for if there's anything in my life that's not right. Lord I want to make it right and God I need you to do a work in my heart today. God I pray you'd help our preacher today. Lord I pray that you'd help my heart. I pray that I would be open to what you want.
Do y'all get this? So oftentimes literally without even noticing it instead of focusing on the one we're all supposed to be praying to, we can literally focus on the one who is praying and and oftentimes it draws the attention not only to an individual instead of God but then oftentimes how would I say it we almost can advertise ourself during prayer. You ever had it and please I have no body or anybody's prayer in mind. Sometimes I'll say something and I don't even know and somebody maybe two years ago you might have prayed something like this and you're thinking I don't but listen to me have you ever had somebody get up and pray and during that prayer they let God and everybody know you know Lord I spent a whole lot of time with you this morning and Lord I know you were sweet today as I got up and fasted and prayed. Wait a minute dear friends we're not up here to let everybody know what we've done in our prayer life. Y'all agree with me on that? Now I don't think anybody that ever has done that I don't even know if anybody's ever done that here I'm sure brother Joe's been here 50 years maybe he's hurt I'm just saying that I have hurt over the years you find that and I because I was an evangelist I almost every other week was preaching at a pastors fellowship or part of a preacher's fellowship or whatever the case might be and if you ever want to find some of that going on go there. The preacher gets up and maybe they you know this preacher scheduled to preach at the pastor's fellowship and even during the message during the preaching it's almost an advertisement of the great things he's done as a pastor and dear friend I'm here to tell you we're not here to get the glory and and prayer should not be focused on self it's not focused on well I you know Lord I you know and it wells I know that I've been faithful and there have been some hard times and but I've hung in there Lord wait you don't need to tell everybody that if you've hung in there God knows if you've hung in there y'all understand I'm saying not trying to criticize anybody I'm just this is that this is God's teaching on prayer so prayer should not focus he said hey don't pray like these religious crowd do they're in the street corners and and they're praying and giving alms and and they're going through all this tradition and oftentimes what they would do they would stand at the different portions of the street corner and and they would pray and agonize in prayer and and you know they would literally sometimes pray woe is me and woe is me and and while they're saying woe is me they inside are building themselves up people come by is like well aren't they humble no they weren't you know why Jesus knew their heart he saw what was going on and so you and I've got to make sure that our prayer is not focused on self and notice this second we focus sometimes on personal needs now listen we tend to do that sometimes it's amazing how really selfish some of our praying is now the Christians focus and and and get this I want you I want you understand the Christians focus on others should be seen in prayer more than anywhere else we believe the Bible teaches that we are to put others before ourselves right okay if that's the case if we are putting others before ourselves the first place that that should be seen is in prayer and dear friend literally if somebody could enter into our prayer closet and listen to us pray the first thing that they ought to be able to get is this boy they should pray for others because our focus listen to me and you say what I have needs and I need the Lord that that's fine but it shouldn't be focused on that it should be others it should be focused on him and others remember the whole rule we give of joy Jesus first other second you third our prayer life should be focused on him as the best the first priority others as the second priority and then us third we often are focusing on the outward let me explain this and that's why God does in this passage that these men like to stand in public oftentimes you and I make the very terrible mistake of judging someone's spirituality by looking at the outside and I'm not just talking about we look at the outside like how they're dressed or how they look I'm talking about oftentimes their deeds and their actions like if a person gets up and buddy they are fluent in their prayers you think boy that's a man that walks with God and another individual might come up and they might you might hear them pray and they might mumble a little bit and they might not be polished and and you'd almost say you know well you know I'm sure they might walk with God a whole lot more than the guy that just you know gave the book y'all agree with that you and I better be careful that we don't judge someone's spirituality by focusing on the outside and that's exactly what the religious hypocrites were doing here and that's why Jesus was correcting them I think sometimes you and I and let me give you the second thing on this outline because this this will go hand in hand notice under possible problems prayer can express selfishness and second prayer can focus on form if you're not careful now we say what do you mean we oftentimes can can focus the importance of our prayer by how long we pray how much we pray and we oftentimes focus so much on the form of it look at me in Bible days when prayer was done by great men of God it was done because they were godly it was not done because they were trying to make themselves godly and oftentimes you and I you know we have this rule well you know you know whether a person prays we focus on the outward and then we begin to focus on the technique of it well I've got to do this and I've got to do that notice what Jesus was saying these men they have their standard lines their standard prayers their rituals that they do they're speaking certain ways and giving their alms and God says it was hypocritical because although they had all the lingo down and although they had all the form down they were denying the godliness thereof you and I sometimes need to quit worrying about you know if I pray I got to say things a certain way and and listen dear friend if we do that that's we're trying to pray to men that's why oftentimes you know so many sometimes new Christians and even people that have been in church for a while they're so afraid to pray in public and I understand that you know oftentimes I think there might have been once or twice over the years I'm mistakenly somebody that does not want to pray in public and just call us hey would you close this in prayer I just wasn't thinking and it could absolutely scare the living daylights out of some people well let me tell you why it can scare the living daylights out of you because you're worried how what people are going to hear you say and if you don't say things right a certain way and you don't necessarily put it you know what I think the best prayer is is when an individual doesn't know how to pray they just want to talk to God do you get where I'm going with this prayer can become a problem when you and I are focusing on the form instead of what our prayer is really made of and that's simply talking with God we're gonna talk about that in a second I had the privilege of obviously being in evangelism for about ten years and I have if you're it would be in a meeting I've heard all kinds of different people pray the ones that I felt and I'm not judging because that's what I'm telling you not to do but there have been times where individuals have prayed and while I was trying to pray you literally I mean you could feel the presence of God and they weren't polished and they didn't say that these and the vows and have everything down it oftentimes would just start something like this God you know I have nothing to offer you God I need your help tonight I might not know all the things to say but we need you tonight I don't think anything means more to God than that I think where you and I can begin to get in trouble is when we have all the stuff down and we've done it so long we know how to do it and you and I look at me what I'm saying is this literally we could get up to this pulpit and pray without even thinking about it we've done it so long and so much and gotten so good at it that we really don't even need God to come up here and pray and dear friend I'm here to say that you know what you and I need to quit focusing on the form and talk to God out of a sincere heart notice this second part of it there's those are some possible problems that God gives in these first eight verses obviously but I want you to notice this powerful prayer all right but what is powerful notice look at verse 8 and actually he gives different things verse 5 he says when thou prayest thou shalt not for they love to pray look at verse 6 but when thou prayest enter thy closet when thou has shut thy door notice this pray to thy father which is in secret now under powerful prayer notice this number one the simple approach do you know what prayer is prayer is simply an individual approaching God let me get let me let me even make it a little bit easier prayer is simply you communicating with God there's nothing mystical about prayer if you and I believe you believe God's real obviously you do you wouldn't be here tonight if you believe God's real and he's real look at me you don't have to go through this mystical little magical phrases to even enter into the presence of God he's with you prayer is you communicating with him let's quit making it so this and so that and you and I need to just talk to him just communication it's all it is and by the way what is communication let's say my wife and I we always talk about marriage and communication we're getting ready to have a marriage October 4th and 5th our marriage enrichment seminar hope all married couples all ages whatever the case might be it's a Friday night Saturday morning and it won't be a lot of time it's free you have a nice meal Friday night breakfast Saturday morning and it's on marriage enrichment it doesn't mean that you're about ready to kill each other and you need to come to this you know if you are about ready to kill each other you need to come to this but you ought to come talk to me now instead of waiting for a few weeks because we don't you know we don't want anybody dead but what I'm saying is this is enrichment it's on becoming one it would be good for all couples now listen to me my wife and I go out and spend a day and if we have problems with communication let me tell you what usually causes a problem with communication it's this little word we call awareness oftentimes an individual does not communicate with their spouse because they're not aware of them you know why you and I do not communicate with God we're not aware look at me if if God made himself known in a physical presence and he was right there we saw him I guarantee you we'd be talking to him but he is right there as if he was but he's not in that physical presence because we have the Holy Spirit in our heart but God is not only with us but in us and oftentimes you and I are not communicating with the Father because we're just simply not aware that he's there we know he's there but we're not aware and so prayer the simple approach is this you talk to God quit worrying about hey do I have to say this certain phrase do I have to say this do I have to say that and I'm not saying this so next time any of you come up here to this pulpit to pray you're gonna be scared up to death that you don't pray something wrong you may be like uh Lord I I don't know what to say I don't want my pastor to be mad or but that's not what I'm talking about I'm just saying what I'm saying should encourage you to feel free to get up and pray as opposed to make you scared because I don't know about you we need to quit worrying about how a person says this phrase and that phrase and you know if it flows off the tongue prayer is the simple approach you just talk to God that's all he wants okay what does powerful prayer include the simple approach and simple ingredients I'll give these to you and we'll let you go for tonight this is preparing this is why God set up getting ready to give them the Lord's Prayer and we're gonna take the Lord's Prayer phrase by phrase and so it'll it'll be probably a little bit of a probably five six seven week series on the Lord's Prayer but I think it'll be profitable for you what what are some simple ingredients of prayer I want you to write these down if you don't have the paper if you do have the paper and hope everybody did just have your pen ready you might want to have the very three very simple things exclusion realization and confidence okay we said preacher how do we know that listen prayer powerful prayer involves exclusion what do you mean it means excluding other people mentally not physically say preacher I don't really understand powerful prayer means this I exclude everybody else and I even exclude myself and I focus solely on God does that make sense to everybody in other words this if I come into this and I have anybody or anything that is on my mind more than God then my prayer is not going to have power for my prayer to have power now notice if you would now look at look at verse six but thou and thou prayest enter in thy closet and when thou has shut thy door pray to thy father which is in secret look at verse seven but when you pray use not vain repetitions he's not worried about the repetitions he's not worried about the you know the phrases and all that stuff he says don't don't do that like the heathen do for they think they shall be heard from their much speaking look at verse eight be not ye therefore like unto them for your father knoweth what things you have need of before ye ask him exclusion you've got to exclude others and yourself now you say well that doesn't make sense preacher because you just said I got to keep others first listen to me I'm talking about the focus of your prayer should be God and God alone that's it the whole priority of your prayer life should be God you literally and what I'm saying is this we're in the south and brother Joe knows that I'm talking about sometimes we have prayer meetings in the south and and we'll get some men and we pray with our deacons and staff just try to before every service now and we'll say all right let's pray when we do that I'll pray and there's might be three or four or five other men praying at the same time and though even some pray out loud and some people and I a lot of people say I can't do that there's just no way I can concentrate because all these what we're saying is this in prayer you should be able to exclude others I don't mean exclude others like you're not going to pray for them I mean exclude others that they're not going to bother you while you're talking to God look at me if somebody's done me wrong today and I want to go I need to go home and pray but it's hard for me to pray because somebody did me wrong listen I need to exclude them because I cannot let what they did keep me from praying to God so you understand what I mean exclusion secondly got to exclude yourself I mean you're gonna have to overcome yourself to spend time in prayer so there is exclusion this is what he said go to your closet pray in secret well what is he saying here hey you got to get away from everybody and everything you got to exclude them you've got to get away from them even when you're praying in a room with five other people your focus should be on God okay secondly there is realization what do you mean realization notice what it says pray to thy father powerful prayer means you realize who and what God is the fatherhood of God all the relationships that that suggests you got to realize notice this in the Old Testament maybe two times two or three times God is referred to as a father is almost non-existent and not even directly when Jesus came to earth he introduced a new relationship with our Creator as he introduced him as father and to me that's the best name for God not that it means more than others I mean it means more to me because he's father that word father involves so many emotions so many different aspects of a relationship you know why a father provides a father protects a father paddles God says is hey if you on earth know how to give good gifts to your children imagine what your father in heaven would do for you aren't you glad that he's not only God he's father okay well when you go to God in prayer you got to realize he's my father though if any of you had a good relationship with your earthly father or have a good relationship with your earthly father you know when you go to them and you need something in sincerity that's what God says you come to me I'm your father and you and I've got to have this realization of who he is and what he is and what he's done in my life and you got to understand we can't come like he's this great being that we cannot approach and hey I'm sorry to bother you but listen he's your dad listen my boys don't bother me when they need something that's not a bother to me I want them to come to me does that make sense God wants you to come to him so there's exclusion there's realization but third there is confidence thank you for listening today we hope you received a blessing from our broadcast the kirtland baptist church is located at 4520 Old Hollow Road in Kernersville North Carolina you may also contact us by phone at three three six nine nine three five one nine two or via the web at Kerwin Baptist Church calm enjoy our services live and all our media on our website and church app thank you for listening to the Kerwin broadcast today god bless you
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-09 06:03:59 / 2023-03-09 06:15:43 / 12