Share This Episode
The Verdict John Munro Logo

Pray Without Ceasing

The Verdict / John Munro
The Truth Network Radio
September 6, 2022 12:26 pm

Pray Without Ceasing

The Verdict / John Munro

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 398 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

September 6, 2022 12:26 pm

Pastor Rob Reece September 4, 2022 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Core Christianity
Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
Our Daily Bread Ministries
Various Hosts
In Touch
Charles Stanley
Clearview Today
Abidan Shah
Encouraging Prayer
James Banks

So, many of you are familiar with Charles Spurgeon. Spurgeon was a Baptist pastor in London in the late 1800s, and he's been called the Prince of Preachers. And Spurgeon is still very, very highly influential as a pastor, as a theologian, even though he died over 130 years ago. But I want to give you an idea of Spurgeon's schedule.

Listen to this. He pastored the largest Protestant church in the world, and he knew all 6,000 people by name. Charles Spurgeon. Every week, he preached four to ten times. He edited a monthly magazine.

He typically read five books each week. He revised his sermons for publication. He directed a theological college. He ran an orphanage. He oversaw 66 Christian charities. He received an average of 500 letters each week that he personally answered. Spurgeon was a husband and a father, and every evening at 6 o'clock, he gathered his whole wife, his wife, and his twin boys together for a time of prayer and worship. And in his spare time, he wrote 150 books. And he made up his bed every morning.

I'll say that for my daughter right here. That's his schedule. What would a man like that say about praying without ceasing? Let me read to you what Spurgeon said about prayer.

He said, it doesn't matter the place, the posture, or the time. The doors of the temple of divine love shall not be shut. Nothing can set a barrier between a praying soul and its God. Whenever we seek the Lord with true hearts, he is found of us. Whenever we cry unto him, he hears us. Every place is hallowed ground to a hallowed heart.

And every day is a holy day to a holy man. While your hands are busy with the world, let your hearts still talk with God. We may speak a thousand words which seem to be prayer and yet never pray. And on the other hand, we may cry into God's ear most effectively and yet never say a word.

Charles Spurgeon. Now we all struggle with prayer in our lives sometimes. Sometimes our prayers are dry and stale.

Sometimes they're weak. Sometimes we don't know what to pray. Some people may not even know how to pray. Even the disciples asked Jesus, teach us how to pray. And some believe that God is going to do whatever he wants to do anyway, regardless of prayer, so it just doesn't matter. Really what we need is more political and more social and more economic action, not prayer. Others believe, and I hope you're one of these, that if you say to this mountain, be moved into the sea, it will be done.

Do you believe that? Don't underestimate the power of prayer. James 5 says, James 5 16, the prayer of a righteous man has great power as it is working. God chooses to work through the prayers of his people. If you've been a follower of Jesus Christ for any time, if you've been at Calvary Church for any time, then you've seen prayer being answered, have you not? We've seen brothers and sisters in the hospital hanging between life and death, and we've gathered to pray for these people, and Lord has restored them to life. We've seen two people with no nickels to rub together that the Lord provides for them after prayer.

We've seen people who have been sick, and we've called them together as pastors and elders and anointed them, and the Lord has healed them, and we've called them together, and the Lord has not healed them. The Lord gives, the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord. But make no mistake, prayer is required of every follower of Jesus Christ. First Thessalonians 5, 16 through 18, rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. Pray is the will of God. What is prayer? It's basically talking to God.

It's the recognition that our God is absolutely sovereign. We are his children, and we depend on him for absolutely everything, and every single one of us need to take the time every single day and schedule a time for prayer. It's been said, if you don't schedule time, you're not going to pray. So all of us are to go into that spot in our homes, in our places of work, wherever it may be, and talk to the Lord. Jesus says, when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. You need to schedule a time to pray.

It's that important. Every single one of us should engage in regular prayer to our Lord. Now, it's not possible, we know this, for us to spend all of our time with words of prayer coming out of our mouths. We have jobs to go to.

We have children to care for. You have life to live. So, what then is praying without ceasing? What is praying without ceasing? Well, on one hand, to pray without ceasing means you should always persist in prayer. Remember the parable of the persistent widow before the unrighteous judge?

She kept going before this judge. So, we are to pray and never lose heart and never give up. And that's one, that's one thing. But on the other hand, it means that all of the Christian life, all of it, should be a prayer walk, a living prayer walk. Everywhere we go, God is with us. Our entire life should be a life of prayer.

Think of it this way. Prayer keeps God at the center of things. Unceasing prayer brings God into every aspect of our existence.

He is with us. Praying without ceasing, then, is a way of life. It means we live in fellowship with our God, leaning on Him all the time. The Lord is not just somebody we meet on Sunday at church.

No, He's with us every step of the way. So, if I'm to pray without ceasing, that means that every single minute of every single day is suitable to call on my God. You live in a constant atmosphere of prayer and devotion. So, this is praying without ceasing.

To pray without ceasing means you live life knowing that you are always in the presence of an omniscient and sovereign God, not just when you come to church. Let's go to your Bibles, turn in your Bibles to Psalm 139 verses 1 through 10. Psalm 139, 1 through 10.

God is with us. Psalm 139. Oh Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know when I sit down, when I rise up. You discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, oh Lord, You know it all together. You hem me in behind and before and lay Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful to me. It is high.

I cannot attain it. Where shall I go from Your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there. If I make my bed in Sheol, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me. Your right hand shall hold me. If you're a follower of Jesus Christ, then you should have a profound awareness that God is always there.

Always. And as we move through life, the presence of the Holy Spirit in you is the most real and the most powerful thing in your life. Through the good times, the bad times, yes, even when we sin, He is there. There is nowhere you can go to hide from God. He is with you. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.

Why? For you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. So even though when we're not speaking consciously to God, there's still a deep, deep dependence that is woven into our very soul. So to pray without ceasing means you know that He is there, and you know that you are dependent on Him for absolutely everything, even the very next breath that you take into your lungs is because He gives it to you.

It means that you know that you can do absolutely nothing without Him. Zero. Zero.

Nothing. So God is with us, yes, and He is with you. So prayer should be as natural for you and for me as breathing. He is here. He is with us. He comforts us. He nurtures us. He guides us. He is in control of everything. He is sovereign. Let's get this very right. If we don't understand that He's with us and we don't understand that He's sovereign, our prayers are going to be weak.

Very, very weak. Now one of the problems that we have is that people tend to compartmentalize their faith. They say, this is my church thing.

I'm going to do that on Sunday. This is the spiritual thing. And the rest of life is the physical world.

So I separate these things. Six days a week, I need to live in the real world, the physical world. My spiritual day is Sunday.

So I've got these two compartments, the physical and the spiritual. I attend church one day a week and I live life the rest. God is at church, but I may not take Him to work. I probably don't. And I probably don't even take Him to my house.

Not even in my home. So I go to church. I get some of the principles that I need to live a pretty good life.

I take my kids to Awana. They get some principles too, but that's about it. And by the way, if God is in control, take a look at that world.

It looks like He's taking His hands off the wheel. So I need to just live my life. People live in two different kingdoms. Can I say that's hypocrisy? And that is completely dangerous. The hypocrites, Jesus says, end up in that place where there's weeping and gnashing of teeth.

That is not where you want to be. God is not God one day a week. He's God seven days a week. And He's with you every single minute of every single day. And we need to recognize that.

We don't want to be one of those who honors God with our lips, but the heart is far from me. No, He's our God. And I want to be very clear about the sovereignty of God. God has spoken, but He has not stopped working. He is still working. He is still in control of all things. He has not taken His hands off of the wheel. He's in control of everything.

Even that little sparrow that falls to the ground will not fall apart from the Father. He sets up kings. He brings them down. He determined the day you were born and the day you're going to die and everything in between. He's in charge of everything in heaven and on earth. All authority, Jesus says, has been given to me in heaven and on earth. He upholds the universe by the word of His power. He is in complete control.

We have to get that. We have to understand that. We don't separate spiritual things and physical things necessarily. God is in control of all of it. He's in control of all of it. The richest, most powerful, most brilliant person in the world.

In fact, all of the nations in the world are no more of a threat to God not fulfilling His purposes than an ant. He will do it. He is in control. And even when we think things are crumbling around us, we know He's in control.

He is working all things together. And He's given us everything we need for life and godliness to get through that. And by the way, if you are in Christ, you're in the Father's hand. You're in the Son's hand. You're sealed with the Holy Spirit.

You're not going anywhere. He's sovereign over everything. So this is why we pray without ceasing. We pray without ceasing, number one, because He is sovereign.

And number two, He's with us every single moment of every single day. And Christ Himself has torn the veil between heaven and earth. And the throne room of God is open. And we can go and say, Father in heaven, Abba Father, hear my prayer.

Have mercy on me, a wretched sinner. And we have confidence because we are His children. And He is working all things for our good and for His glory. He's sovereign. He's with us. And we have access to the throne room of God. Are you praying?

That's my question. Do you pray? Do you pray without ceasing? Is your life a life of prayer?

Now think about this. If God is sovereign, and He said He would never leave us or forsake us, then why are so many professing believers so angry, so anxious, so worried, so joyless and afraid? Jesus said, in the world you will have trouble, but I've given you peace. Let not your hearts be troubled. Neither let them be afraid. You don't have to worry. You don't have to be afraid.

You don't have to be anxious. But in all prayer and supplication, let your requests be made known to God. God is working all things for our good and for His glory. So why are people, yes, professing Christians, falling apart?

That's my question. Let's think about it for a second. The Christian life is often called a pilgrimage. You and I are on a journey.

And don't reduce your faith, by the way, to I'm saved, I'm going to heaven. That's next stop. No, we have a pilgrimage to make. We have a journey to make. We have to get through this thing we call life. Yes, once saved, always saved.

The Lord will get you through. Well, we still have to make this journey. And you need to understand that this journey we're on, this pilgrimage, is preparing us for that place, that place that we will one day see, this place that is perfect. So the way that we walk reflects the faith that we have.

I'm getting somewhere with this. We're talking about praying as we walk. Think of this journey as a testing ground. And it begins when each one of us place our faith in Jesus Christ.

He frees each one of us individually. He's opened the prison doors, and we begin this journey out. And we're now sojourners, and we're traveling on a journey to a place, a place that is not like this place, a place that is not built with human hands, a perfect place, a place where there's no tears, no sin, no pain, no death. That's where we're going, a place of everlasting joy in the presence of God himself. But before we get there, we've got to travel through this world. And the way that we go is narrow, and it's hard, and few find it. And there's not much on this journey that wants us to get to our destination, the world, the flesh, and the devil. They're all pounding on us.

They don't want to see us get there. But here's the thing. The Good Shepherd, our Good Shepherd, is leading the way. He is leading us through this place. And by the way, if you've got your hope and your money, a politician, or your talents to see you through this world, then your faith is really misplaced.

And I would say you're in great trouble. You need to keep your eyes on the Lord Jesus Christ. Look what man has done out there. You think a man can get you through this wilderness?

Absolutely not. Christ himself is the one who is leading us. He is the one who has overcome this world. He is the one who has disarmed the powers and the principalities in the heavenly places. And he is the one who's given us his spirit, our comforter and our guide, our helper. And he's told us exactly what to do. Follow me.

Follow me. He has gone before us. Scripture tells us how we're to walk as we go through this journey, down this straight and narrow path. Go to 1 John 2, 5 and 6. 1 John 2, 5 through 6 says, by this we know that we are in him, in Christ, saved. Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk the same way in which he walked. Are you walking like Christ?

That's my question. Let's go to one more. Let's flip to 1 Peter 2. 1 Peter 2, 21 through 23. 1 Peter 2, 21. For this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example so that you might follow in his steps. He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return.

When he suffered, he did not threaten, but he continued entrusting himself to Him who judges justly. In short, this is what we do. We trust Christ and we follow Him. That's what we do as we go on this journey. It's that simple.

That's not easy, but the command is very, very clear. We walk as Jesus Christ walked. And since we're to walk as He walked, let's think about how the Lord walked when He was on this earth. Let's think about how He was in constant communion with His Father. He said, Jesus said, He who sent Me is with Me.

He has not left Me alone. I always do the things that are pleasing to Him. He was always talking to His Father. No, not always with words, but He was always in constant communion with His Father.

Let's think about that relationship for a second. Think about Jesus taking those five loaves and those two fish, and what does He do? He looks up to heaven and He thanks His Father for this. Think about Him going to those desolate places to pray. Think about Him praying all night. Think about Him in that garden praying as sweat like drops of blood poured from Him. Think about Him praying for His disciples on the night He was betrayed.

Think about Him praying for you and for me. Father, keep them one. Sanctify them in truth. Thy word is truth. Think about Him hanging on that cross and saying to His Father, Father, forgive them.

They know not what they do. This is living a life of prayer in full submission to His Father. Walking prayer life.

That's what it is. And like our Lord, who is our example? As we journey down this straight and narrow way, we're going to have trials and tribulations.

It's not going to be easy. Jesus told us that. It's not going to be easy, but we keep trusting Him who judges justly and we pray.

That's what we do. And along the way, some of us are going to be persecuted. What did Jesus say to do?

Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you so that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. We're thinking about this journey. Along the way, we're going to be tempted. What does Jesus say to do? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Lord, keep me from evil. Lead us not into temptation. Along the way, some of us are going to hear that news we don't want to hear from that doctor.

What do we do? Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.

Is anyone sick? Let him call for the elders of the church and let them pray over him. Along the way, the Lord is going to appoint presidents and kings and governors to rule over the nations. Some will be just, some will be unjust. Make no mistake about it, the Lord put every single one of them there. That's Romans 13.

He's told us exactly what to do. Pray, 1 Timothy 2. First of all then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet, a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.

Along the way, on this journey, we're going to encounter all kinds of things in every step of the way. We're to pray without ceasing. Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ for you.

That's what we do. How are you doing with that? How are you doing praying? Is your life a living prayer, a living walk with our Lord? You may say, listen, I know I need to pray, but look how bad that world is out there.

It's crazy. You just want me to pray? Let me read something to you. This is from a history of Christianity in the United States and Canada. This is by Mark Knoll.

I'll read a snippet. One of the most significant reversals in the history of the Christian faith took place in America during the 1780s. Just as the new nation was being defined, was defining its independent identity and scripting its constitution. This was right after our independence.

Drunkenness was epidemic. City streets were lawless at night, and the church appeared to be in terminal decline. In fact, Chief Justice of the United States John Marshall wrote to the Bishop of Virginia, James Madison, saying the church was too far gone to ever be redeemed.

The great philosopher Voltaire concurred, and the author Tom Paine argued that Christianity will be forgotten in 30 years. A poll taken at Harvard had discovered that there was not one believer in the whole student body. They took a poll at Princeton, a more evangelical place, where they discovered that only two believers were in the student body. The students rioted. They held a mock communion at Williams College, and they put on anti-Christian plays at Dartmouth. They burned down the Nassau Hall at Princeton. They forced the resignation of the president of Harvard. They took a Bible out of the local Presbyterian church in New Jersey, and they burned it in a public bonfire. Christians were so few on campus in the 1790s that they met in secret like a communist cell.

They kept their minutes in code so that no one would know. It's hard to believe that America, the nation which adopted the slogan, in God we trust, was so godless at the time of its inception that Bibles were being burned and bishops were being made redundant. This is right after we won our independence. That was the state of things.

Now let me fast forward now, read something else to you. Most of us are aware that not only Great Britain, but also the United States, and the entire world, are battling for our very survival. Economically, morally, politically, religiously, and otherwise, we are battling against forces of materialism and humanism that are beating at our gates from without and infiltrating from within. We could be living in a day in which the entire world could be swept into destruction. We have departed from the idea of God.

We have reared a whole generation by telling them we even doubted there was a God. Our moral standard began to break down and we began to see the symptoms of this moral breakdown in our society. It broke out into juvenile delinquency, racial hatred, prejudice, and bigotry. So we produced an age of frustration. Everybody's frustrated.

There's nervous tension. This is an age of selfishness, an age of fear. One professor said, we're now at the end of history and we know it. That's from a sermon Billy Graham preached in 1955.

Here's the thing. There's nothing new under the sun. The world has always been at enmity with God. The world has always, since the Garden of Eden, been twisted and evil. But I want you to understand that the world is not the problem. Christ has overcome the world. The world, the problem is with the people of God. Read your Bibles. Hosea, my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Jeremiah, my people have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters.

They make cisterns for themselves that hold no water. To the church in Laodicea, you say you're rich. No, no, no. But you are lukewarm and you're neither hot nor cold so I spit you out of my mouth. You are wretched, poor, blind, pitiable, and naked.

You, church, Jesus says. Second Chronicles, if my people humble themselves and pray, then I will heal them. My people, I believe it is true that the world is getting darker. I don't think there's any question about that. It's always been dark, but it is getting darker. But you and I are supposed to be lights in the world. We're supposed to reflect our Lord Jesus Christ. We're supposed to walk as He walked. And so here's my question. If we're the lights in the world and the darkness will not overtake the light, then why is it increasingly getting dark? Yes, it is true that the gates of hell will not prevail against the church of Jesus Christ, but I want you to understand this.

Please hear me. Christ Himself will take out a church. He will do that.

He tells the apostle John, John, write this to the church in Ephesus. You have lost the love you had at first. Remember from where you have fallen. Repent, repent. If not, I will come and remove your lampstand. I will take out your light. You're no more benefit to the kingdom of God. Christ Himself will do that. The world is getting darker because the light is getting dimmer. And that's the fact. So as we go on this journey, many people, instead of shining that light of Christ, they're saying, Lord, I know I'm supposed to live a life of prayer. I know I'm supposed to be a person of grace and mercy and love and full of the Holy Spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, and kindness. But you know what?

That doesn't work for me right now. Look at this world. I'm mad about it.

Gentle and lowly and humble. No, no, no. That's weak. That's weak. Is Christ weak? Is walking like Christ's weakness?

No. It's powerful. It's power. But people are casting off the way of Christ.

That's what they're doing. They might come to a church like Calvary and know good Bible preaching and teaching and agree with every word in this book, but they're not going to walk like Christ. Weird to walk like Christ. And this is what the Israelites did in the wilderness. God himself was leading them, a pillar of fire, a pillar of smoke. And what did they do? They complained.

He gave them everything they needed to get to the promised land. And they said, have you let us out to die? And that's what Christians are doing.

Some, they don't say it with their mouths, but that's what their hearts are saying. Lord, have you let us, look at this world, have you let us out here to die? No.

No. You and I are supposed to walk as our Lord Jesus walked. We're supposed to walk a living prayer walk. We're supposed to show this world what it looks like to be reconciled to a holy God. We're supposed to show this world what it looks like to be truly alive. We're to reflect the light of Jesus Christ. Every step of the way, we trust Him.

He's leading us. We are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a people of His own possessions. He has called us out of the darkness into His marvelous light. We're supposed to show the light of Christ to this dark and dying world. We are a nation of priests. And what do priests do? They pray. That's what they do. Your whole life, my whole life is to be a living sacrifice, a living prayer.

That's what we do. I want you to examine your faith. I want you to examine your walk with Jesus Christ. The way you live your life, your walk says a lot about your faith.

Do you look like Jesus Christ? What does your life look like outside of these church walls? I will tell you that a faithful Christian is a praying Christian. Let's go to one more passage of Scripture. This is Luke 18, verses one through eight. Luke 18, one through eight.

Luke 18. And He told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. And He said, in a certain city, there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, give me justice against my adversary. For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming. And the Lord said, hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to His elect who cry to Him day and night?

Will He delay long over them? I tell you, He will give them justice speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth? Now, I'm not going to go through this whole passage, but I just want you to notice a couple of things. That Jesus equates always praying and not losing heart to faith. So much so that He says, in effect, when the Son of Man comes, will He find people praying?

These are the faithful people. These are the ones He is looking for, the ones who are crying out without ceasing to their sovereign God. And Jesus wonders, when the Son of Man comes, will He find one? Will He find faith on earth? Will He find people of prayer? Now, I understand that prayer is not all there is to the Christian life. We're to evangelize.

We're to do works of mercy and compassion and to love one another and to serve one another. But don't ever get to a point in your life where you cease to pray. Don't abandon God and say, there's no use praying. No use praying. Go on praying. Don't stop praying. Lean on God all the time.

Scripture says, trust the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways. Acknowledge Him and He will make straight your path. Remember that straight and narrow path.

We're on it. Acknowledge Him. Trust Him. Trust God. Remember, we're making our case to a righteous judge who's in control of absolutely everything, even that little sparrow that falls to the ground. So when we push for activism and justice without going to God in prayer, that's a real problem.

That's a failure to see God as the righteous judge. God Himself says, I will deliver my people. I will bring justice. He has promised that. If my people pray, then I will.

I will. So you and I, we plead to the highest possible authority. We pray with persistence and patience, and we know that He is working all things for our good and for His glory. We pray.

That's what we do. Jonathan Edwards writes, God's absolute sovereignty and justice is what my mind seems to be rest assured of as much as anything else I see with my eyes. In other words, He was absolutely sure that God was sovereign and He's just, no matter what He saw out there, God is sovereign and He is just. Is your mind sure of that? No matter what you're seeing, wars, rumors of wars, disease and pestilence, are you sure of God's sovereignty? You need to be. Are you sure of His faithfulness to His Word and to His people?

And if so, is it reflected in the way you live your life, in the way you are soldiering to this place? Is it reflected? Let me show you what this looks like. Let me show you what this trust looks like. It looks like Elijah, the prophet, and he's standing beside his servant who's absolutely terrified because he sees all these Syrians surrounding them. And Elijah says, no, Lord, open the eyes.

Open the eyes that he may see. And what does he see? Chariots of fire all around.

Don't be afraid. It looks like David who says, God, you are my rock in my fortress. In your name, you lead me. For your name's sake, you lead me and you guide me. It looks like righteous Daniel in Babylon who didn't say, God, destroy these Babylonians.

Look how evil they are. He says, no, God, we have sinned. We have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled against you. We have turned aside from your commandments. It looks like Stephen, when those stones were hitting his body, he looks up to heaven and says, God, forgive them. It looks like Jesus. This is praying without sleeping.

What are we talking about? Praying without ceasing. It looks like Jesus asleep in the stern of the boat when his disciples were in terror because those waves were coming in. That's praying without ceasing.

Why are you afraid? God is in control. You of little faith. That's praying without ceasing. I want to come back to Mark Knoll. When this country won our independence, I just read to you what the country was like in terms of godlessness.

Let me read this to you now. In England, in the 1790s, a group of men started what the British call the union of prayer. Through this prayer group, a great revival that swept across Great Britain caught the ear of a man of prayer named Isaac Bacchus, a Baptist pastor, who in 1794, when the conditions in America were at their worst, addressed an urgent plea for prayer for revival to the pastors of every Christian denomination in the United States. There was revival that was happening in England, the very country we just won our independence from.

And now this revival is going to sweep to America. And churches knew that their backs were to the wall, and all the churches adopted the plan, the prayer plan, until America, like Britain, was interlaced with a network of prayer meetings which set aside the first Monday of each month to pray. It was not long before revival came, and out of that second great awakening came the whole modern missionary movement and its societies.

Out of it came the abolition of slavery, popular education, Bible society, Sunday schools, and many social benefits. Utter hopelessness had turned into a massive movement of spiritual and social transformation, and the tipping point had been prayer. Pray without ceasing. If my people humble themselves and pray, then I will hear them. Prayer.

God moves through the prayers of his people. You want change? You want that to change?

You want that to change? Pray. Pray. Calvary Church, every single one of us, is on a journey. We were blessed with a very diverse congregation.

We're here from all over the world. We've got many different ages, cultures, backgrounds, ethnicities, and in this congregation there are many different stages. People are at many different stages on their walk with Christ. Some would have walked with the Lord for many, many years. Some are just beginning.

Some eyes are just now open and everything's shiny and brand new. And there are some who are still babies in the faith when they should be mature by now. And there are some who are beat down, who need the prayers and support and bear one another's burdens of their brothers and sisters.

We need to do this. And there are some here who think they're saved and they are not. They think Christ has released them from bondage, but they still have a big chain on them. And they think, well, just because I come to a good church and I have conservative values and I believe the Bible is true, well, I'm saved. No.

No. The cares of the world, the trials and tribulations, all of that has them shackled down. There's no peace in their soul. And you can look at the way they live life and see something. But every single one of us is on a journey.

Some are on the narrow way and some are on this broad way. And no matter who you are, we all have this in common. We all need the Lord Jesus Christ.

Every single one of us. We all need to set our hearts and our minds on the one who can safely take us home. His purpose should be our purpose. His thoughts should be our thoughts. His way should be our way. The Lord should be such a magnet for our hearts and minds that whatever we think about, we eventually relate it back to Him.

Even that little sparrow that falls to the ground. Remember, you and I as Christians, we don't think naturally. We think spiritually. To set the mind on the things of the flesh is death.

To set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. We have to see things as Christ sees them. So Christ says to you and He says to me, this is what He says, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth? Will He find those who have the confidence in our sovereign God and the triumph of His cause?

Will He find people living a life of prayer? I'm challenging you to live this life of prayer and recognize that you and I are always in the presence of our sovereign God. The doors of heaven are still open. We can still go and talk to our Father who is in heaven and we can still say, Father, hear my prayer.

Hear my prayer. We can go to that place where angels must cover their eyes and I want you to find all your satisfaction right there in Him. Take time to sit at the feet of Jesus Christ, to learn from our Master and be captivated by His glory and know that He supplies you with everything you need to get you home.

Everything. He's given everything we need for life and godliness. Praise Him. Pray to Him.

Keep your eyes on Him. I want to finish by reading Psalm 23. You know this Psalm.

If you'll turn there, I just want you to think about this this week. Think about the Lord as your shepherd leading us down this journey. Psalm 23.

You know it well. The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil.

My cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. The Lord will see us home.

Trust Him every step of the way and take time to talk to your Father who is in heaven. Blessed Father, we come again to you, the eternal God, and we give you praise. Continue to work in our hearts, Father. Continue to mold us into that image of our glorious Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Bless Calvary Church. Unify us. Father, we pray for this next generation that we're building living stones and that this church will shine a light for Christ until the Lord returns, Father. So be with us, Father. In Christ's name we pray. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-01 10:55:09 / 2023-03-01 11:11:14 / 16

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime