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November 10, 2021 12:00 am
Chamber say this about prayer. Prayer is deliberate confidence in the character of God's ways you may not understand all of the way you wrote this said this the life of faith is not so much one of mounting up with is Eagle as it is a life faith and never knows where it is being led, but it will one God used him to alleviate so much of God's will. Chambers offered us a simple proposition for life.
Just trust God and do the next thing is we continue through our series entitled legacies of light we come to the life of Oswald Chambers in today's broadcast Stevens by looking at the biographies of 16 significant individuals from church history. This lesson continues that series and I'm glad you've tuned in. Now settle in, as Stephen opens up to the life and teaching of Oswald Chambers started in 1890, a 15-year-old young man at his father were walking home from a meeting where they had listened to Charles have virgin the young man said to his father as they walked along that he would gladly have given himself to the Lord had the opportunity been given. You know much about Spurgeon, you had to make an appointment on Tuesday to meet with them, make an inquiry of this young man didn't want to wait so the boys father actually responded well, my boy, you can do that right now so there on that path. They stopped and prayed together. John 15-year-old was a young man named Oswald Chambers. He would later join a Baptist Church in London and eventually enter school. His love was drawing poetry and music and he was determined to be an artist. As I began to prepare three years after that. He sensed that God might want something different for his life and ministry, so he abandoned his art studies and enrolled at the Dunning training college in Scotland. He did so well academically.
He was invited to stay on after he graduated to become one of the faculty tutors. It was during this time, however, that he entered into what he would later call the dark night of his soul.
It was a time of great doubting discouragement tried in vain to reach some state of self-satisfaction state that his Pentecostal friends, referred to as the mountaintop of victory. He would write a poem about a particular period in his life as a young man that included these lyrics. Oh Lord Jesus here my crying for a consecrated life for I bite the dust in trying for release from this dark strife that dark. Ended with a personal commitment and surrender to God's spirit. In fact, something that Oswald referred to as a baptism of the Holy Spirit.
He was simply borrowing the vocabulary of his association with the Holiness movement there in England and Scotland and did her thing and and I will take you down this path, but while he didn't speak in tongues. In fact TE decried any attempt to prove that the baptism of the Holy Spirit was in any way related was no doubt influenced in these early years by these movement back for a brief time he left the school and represented the primarily which was a holiness movement worn where's the writing by graphically of this particular experience in Oswald's life kind of sifting through what happened to him and more biblical terminology believes that Oswald more than likely was genuinely converted to Christ. He eventually enrolled at the University of Edinburgh to prepare for ministry.
And while there he was being mentored and trained by a great preacher by the name of Alexander white deep preacher cut of Puritan stock much like Charles had Spurgeon so if I put this together by way of a quick summary he was influenced early in his life by the gospel preaching of Charles Spurgeon alerted to the need of total surrender to the Holy Spirit is a good thing by his Pentecostal friend and then tutored from the pulpit by Alexander white and that wasn't all he would later be influenced by DL Moody's life and ministry through an organization that he would join the chaplain, he would effectively become eventually a foreign missionary serving with the Y in C a sometime. However, before joining the YMCA. Oswald actually toured the world, or some of it is an itinerant evangelist is poorly taken primarily to America and even to Japan where he would preach for nearly 10 years. He's in his mid-50s. By this time it is on one particular passage to America highly satisfied Christian friends to to keep an eye on a young lady and her friends at name Biddy because she was traveling alone to America in search of work and he was only happy to oblige his concerned friends and he did keep an eye on her back. He married her 24 months later, we could permanently keep it on her.
They were married and their union in 1910 would ultimately create a ministry that neither one of them would've imagined Biddy happen to be trained, skillful stenographer she could record words at the rate of 240 minutes, she began recording everything Oswald pre-and taught a few years later Chambers became convinced that a Bible college was needed in England so we settled down this family, his daughter.
By this time, was born and he wanted college that would emphasize both personal experience and spirituality with academic excellence. School began, and it operated on a principle of faith.
By this time, he was already becoming known as a man of prayer, and he understood the interceding work of Christ in the indwelling work of the Holy Spirit, fresh a wonderful way, but the school operated than on faith. In fact, Bible college was never more than a month away from defaulting just to show you how committed Oswald was the praying and receiving whatever the Lord wanted to provide all occasional wealthy friend offered to completely and entirely in dowel the Bible college to which he responded no, thank you Steve if you do that the school might go on longer than God wants for one of the nozzle chambers failed for you know with the religious conventions of the day that he was nicknamed the apostle of the haphazard is ministry path was erratic. Plans work. Smooth doubting is very very spontaneous and you can see how God gave him a wife and recorded everything opposites attracted there as well. He loved the adventure of faith without as much of a worry.
1915, when World War I broke out. He wrestled with staying in England he wanted to serve in the fields. He wanted to close to the action, but he wasn't so fatuous that he didn't stop pray in fact that he recorded in his journal, his prayer. Here is Lord, I praise you for this place. I am in. But the wonder has begun stirring me, is this your place for me.
It may be only restlessness, so hold me steady doing your will call me that I sin not against her will and prayer. One year later he became convinced that the praying to God wanted him overseas, and so he took pity and their little girl with him as a set up camp as the YMCA chaplain to the troops stationed at a military base just outside of Cairo, Egypt.
Oswald Chambers suspended the Bible college indefinitely and left settling the know when he arrived to join the other missionaries. Everything immediately changed somewhat too happy about it. Among other changes. He informed the other YMCA workers that they would immediately abandon weekly movies and concerts for Bible classes. He was going to begin teaching the soldiers.
The Bible all the other workers predicted the soldiers would leave in this mass exodus because of it. In his lengthy biography, which I read a couple of years ago Chambers found this whole situation rather intriguing. Becky wrote the Cairo assaulted his physical senses with enticing aromas from streetside cafés in the earring Muslim calls to prayer from countless minarets erupted spiritually. The challenge of taking the gospel to several thousand men and is a military camp seemed almost staggering. Came in he cut out all the fun immediately and said no dive into begin the study the Bible instead of a mass exodus was an awakening. It wasn't long before several hundred soldiers packed into that YMCA hut to listen to this man's thought-provoking humor punctuated biblical messages. Becky also began weekly prayer meeting only two showed up soon.
The men filled the hot.
So many of these men knew they never return home alive gospel became the water of living hope in life to them in prayer became a unique source of strength wasn't long before Oswald Chambers key ministry. Verse came known to the entire camp.
Becky had a banner created with this verse on it and want to return to it. It's in Luke's gospel in Chapter 11. The banner stretched from one side of the platform to the other and everyone in his ministry was confronted by this text.
Luke chapter 11 verse 13 how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask. Let me look with you for a few minutes it at this wonderful contact.
Then again, you can only imagine how much these soldiers wanted to know of God heard their prayers and God cared in the carnage of World War I challenging days. What kind of prayer made it through to God would be there. Question will go back to verse one of the disciples were wondering effectively the same thing. And it came about that while he was praying in a certain place after he finished one of his disciples said to him, Lord, teach us how to pray. By the way the disciples never asked Jesus to teach them how to walk on water, how to silence a storm how to divide up a few pieces of bread to feed thousands of people teach me how to do that know the only thing they ever ask recorded in Scripture for Jesus to teach them was to teach us how to pray the Lord responds. This is a analogous to the text and method it's a little more expanded on the what we call the Lord's prayer.
It's actually the disciples prayer the instructs them with and we will take time you're familiar with following the instruction board anticipates the very next question on their heart and it's going to be this question.
Does God really hear us praying even if we pray like this is a Jesus anticipating that question creates a wonderful story that he tells them to prove his point, and I want you to get the point. Verse five he said to them, suppose one of you has a friend and goes to him at midnight and says to him, friend, let me three love the three pieces of flat bread for friend of mine has come to be from a journey and I have nothing whatsoever to set before him. Make sure you don't miss the point here. This text that this friend has arrived at midnight. Not exactly the most convenient time to have a knock on your door if you're the neighbor in this culture wasn't unusual for people to travel at night, especially because of the heated and without warning. Jesus creates a story where this visitor arrives at at midnight not in this culture. Hospitality was considered a social duty. You never turn anyone away.
It was also considered, particularly in Israel, all the wonderful opportunity to show loyalty and love. And so now if you're that man you got a dilemma on your hands so it is arrived at your home, it's midnight and you have nothing whatsoever to feed nothing. The feature gets. I remember learning something that hospitality. Growing up in a missionary home. It seemed like someone was always visiting in our home and many a night I gave up my bedroom to some traveling missionary or preacher or gas and it was just assumed that we never complain, and my mother always seemed to have meals ready.
They just seem to miraculously appear and and there was always food.
I had no idea that she kept meals waiting in the freezer for the next surprise guest that my father life bring home so Marsha and I were married for just a couple of months. A few weeks actually I was just beginning my seminary training and one Sunday night who would show up at church but a missionary couple that I knew from my past center church and I asked them where they were eating supper and they said they didn't have any plans so I so wanted to come over to our apartment for dinner. They were thrilled they follow at his home in their car and in all the way. Marsha was looking straight ahead because they were behind as she was saying honey. We don't have anything to feed them.
The food pantries of the other to get groceries tomorrow after work after school in and out. I don't have anything that wasn't all.
She said that all you know he's in Myrtle Beach right now, but I'm afraid she's listening online.
She then said you know why I got a head of lettuce and and we get cheat, so she whipped up this Caesar salad fit for royalty laughter dinner. I made the mistake of asking them where they were spending the night, a slow learner and and they said we don't have anywhere to stay civil once you stay with my wife actually came up with the idea she initiated his state here so we gave them our one-bedroom and we made a pallet on the floor in the living room.
I was can be sleeping out there anyway. I consider this an improvement lesson I learned was don't invite anybody over for dinner. Do you object with with your wife. Make sure you got something to eat while the lesson here in the story is your stock with an overnight guest and you don't have anything either that a hell lettuce and cheese which are your neighbor. Think of it was baking bread that afternoon and you remember that you know they have some your only hope is to go over there and wake that man, so here's the dilemma. You can either be a bad host and send your guests to bed hungry or you can be a bad neighbor and go wake up your friend that midnight in the story that's the choice that was made over seven from inside. He that your neighbor answers and says do not bother me. The door is already been shot and my children and I that that is effectively our family is already in bed the bed for them was a mat on the floor where the family would sleep, and further in in the villages of Christ's day. It was customary to bring into their little hot at night there chickens and goats so they would be stolen in the night. So for somebody to get up at midnight would not only awaken the family but a bunch of animals to and they're not going to go back to sleep so no wonder he says here go away were already down for the night. Jesus effectively says in verse. A neighbor does finally get up use of bread not because he's your friend because you're gonna wake up everybody anyway, until you get help now. Unfortunately, this is why wanted to do with this particular part of the passage, the average Christian thinks this story proves the point that you gotta keep on knocking on heavens door to finally wake God up in the doing thing for that's not the point is either something to be said about persistence in prayer fact, Paul said that the Thessalonians were to pray without ceasing, but that is not the point Jesus is making this prayer in verse nine I say to you asking it will be given to you.
Just ask, seek and you will find not guess what God's door will be opened to you at any time guaranteed that he will always hear you that the point of the story is not one of comparison between God and this sleepy irritated neighbor.
This is the story of comparison. It's a story of contrast, God is not like that sleepy neighbor. That's what Jesus reinforces look at in verse 11. Suppose one of you fathers is asked by his son for a fish, he will not give him a snake instead of the fish, will he implied answer, of course not.
Murphy asked Renée he will I give him a scorpion will he you then being evil. I think this word evil is rooted in the Old Testament culture words translated flesh and blood, and I think that a better point if fathers who are flesh and blood that is moral creatures treat their children better than that. Imagine how your immortal father God will treat his children. Here's the point if you know how to give good gifts to your children listen when you're praying you can be confident how much more will your heavenly father give the Holy Spirit, by the way what he is doing is introducing to us the best gift of all the ultimate answer to those who ask him this doesn't absolve us from intensity and discipline in prayer, but it does mean that you are not ringing from God the father's unwilling hands that which you really need to just keep that it made you comprise fingers loose no going to your heavenly father knows what you need in the greatest need, happens to be himself is ready to give you a measure as it were of the spirits discernment and wisdom.
When you estimate to be the answer you wanted or expected. Whatever arrives comes from the open ever ready hands of your father gives us the Holy Spirit's wisdom so that we can handle whatever the answer ends up being. I love the way one author summarize this lesson, you asked for a gift, and God the father gives you the giver you asked for a product and he gives you the source you asked for comfort and he gives you the comforter you come seeking power and he gives you the source of power you need help and he gives you the helper seeking answers that he gives you the indwelling Spirit of truth. Oswald Chambers would say this about prayer. Prayer is deliberate confidence in the character of God's ways you may not understand time. I love the way like this said this the life of faith is not so much one of mounting up with wings as eagles, as it is a life of walking faith and never knows where it is being led, but it allows one leading balalaika spiritual mentors which included Charles Spurgeon of the Moody and Alexander Whyte also Chambers would remain virtually unheard of entirely skewered during his lifetime.
Becky once said to a friend of his younger, I feel I shall be buried for a time hidden away in obscurity and then suddenly I shall flameout do my work and be gone is exactly what happened after less than 24 months in Egypt. Chambers developed appendicitis. He resisted going to the hospital because on the grounds that the beds were needed by men wounded in battle. Eventually, his condition grew critical on October 29. The surgeon performed an emergency appendectomy for a few weeks of life hung in the balance. He then revived, only to suffer from hemorrhaging in his lung. On November 15, 1917, less than two years after arriving in Egypt as a missionary in this ministry that was already being so wonderfully blessed by God's spirit to the utter shock of his wife, friend, ministry's supporters, Oswald Chambers.he was only 43 years and obscure missionary outpost near Cairo, Egypt. Teaching hut full of soldiers.
That was pretty much it. But his life would impact millions of Christians over the next several generations, and it really isn't over yet. It came from the hard work of his wife's note. Take the after his death did he and their daughter returned home and then sensing the Lord will of the matter that he took out all her notes from his sermons and his lessons at the college.
Egypt, as he traveled and preached notes that she had taken word for word, this shorthand is he preached and taught in different what she was able to take down, edit, and publish the world would hear of the ministry of possible change, he would encourage his students with his wonderful advice never make a hole out of your own experience. Let God be as original with other people as he is even writing this journal or keep me radiantly and joyously one more subject before worth commenting on, was also Chambers counsel regarding vision make. He would he would say simply this way. Trust God and do the next kind of counsel. By the way Chambers takes away so much of God's will just trust God and then with confidence and do the next.
I hope this lesson was a blessing and encouragement to you.
This is wisdom from the heart are Bible teacher Stephen Devi pastors the shepherd's church in Cary, North Carolina.
We'd love to hear from you, and learn how God's using the teachings you hear to strengthen your walk with Christ. You can send Stephen a note if you address your email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks again for joining us. I hope will be with us next time. As Stephen brings you more wisdom for the