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by Dr. RAY ORTLUND

Never give up praying

“It is very apparent from the Word of God that he often tries the faith and patience of his people, when they are crying to him for some great and important mercy, by withholding the mercy sought for a season; and not only so, but at first he may cause an increase of dark appearances.  And yet he, without fail, at last prospers those who continue urgently in prayer with all perseverance and ‘will not let him go except he blesses.’”

Jonathan Edwards, “A Call to United Extraordinary Prayer,” in Works (Edinburgh, 1979)

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Jim Cymbala

Pastor and author, Jim Cymbala, in his book, Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire put it this way:

“I have discovered an astonishing truth. God is attracted to weakness. He can’t resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him” (p. 19).

by  Dr. RAY ORTLUND

Our only true resting place

“The world picks up its skirt and passes by.  It leaves you alone, it does not want to associate with you, you have gone down, you belong to the refuse and the gutters, and the world is too respectable to have any interest in you.  Here is One who is ready to receive you and to accept you. . . . ‘Just as you are, I am ready to receive you.  In your rags, in your filth, in your vileness.  Rest.’”

D. Martyn Lloyd-JonesThe Cros (Westchester, 1986), page 170

 

Leonard Ravenhill, in his book, Why Revival Tarries, wrote:

Poverty-stricken as the church is today in many things, she is the most stricken here, in the place of prayer. We have many organizers, but few agonizers; many players and payers, few prayers; many singers, few clingers; lots of pastors, few wrestlers; many fears, few tears; much fashion, little passion; many interferers, few intercessors; many writers, but few fighters. Failing here, we fail everywhere (p. 23)

F. B. Meyer

“The greatest tragedy of life is not unanswered prayer, buy unoffered prayer.”

~ F.B. Meyer

A BIBLICAL MODEL FOR REVIVAL PRAYING 

By Dave Butts

For many years now, the Lord has put the issue of revival praying upon my heart. Initially, I must admit, my prayers were fairly generic: “O Lord, please revive us.” As I have grown in my approach to prayer, I’ve learned more specific requests, especially in using the Word of God to help format and provide content for my prayers. Psalm 80 and Isaiah 63 and 64 have helped me to petition the Lord for revival with both variety and the power of Scripture behind my requests.

Recently I have been praying through the Psalms again. I began to lift before the Lord the words of Psalm 74. To my delight, I found another “revival” prayer. My desire is that this Psalm will provide fuel for the fire of intercession and petition in your life as you beseech God to once again bless us with His Presence in revival.

As you pray through Psalm 74, please notice that before major sections I share some comments to help you see the aspects of revival in each passage. I encourage you to move beyond Bible study however, to passionately praying the heart of the Psalmist.

The Awareness of the Need for Revival

At the beginning of Psalm 74 we find the agonizing realization that God’s presence is not near. In fact, because of sin, there has been a sense of rejection. As is typical in revival praying, there is a cry for God to remember His people and return to them:

“Why have You rejected us forever, O God? Why does Your anger smolder against the sheep of Your pasture? Remember the people You purchased of old, the tribe of Your inheritance, whom You redeemed – Mount Zion, where You dwelt. Turn Your steps toward these everlasting ruins, all this destruction the enemy has brought on the sanctuary” (Psa. 74:1-3).

The Result of God’s Apparent Absence

When sin is accepted in the life of the people of God, the consequences begin to be felt. The enemies of God and His people begin to afflict the nation. Notice that the Psalmist uses the phrase, “Your foes roared.” This reminds us that our ultimate enemy is Satan, the one whom Peter tells us roams about as a roaring lion seeking whom he might devour (1 Pet. 5:8).

“Your foes roared in the place where You met with us; they set up their standards as signs. They behaved like men wielding axes to cut through a thicket of trees. They smashed all the carved paneling with their axes and hatchets. They burned Your sanctuary to the ground; they defiled the dwelling place of Your Name. They said in their hearts, ‘We will crush them completely!’ They burned every place where God was worshiped in the land. We are given no miraculous signs; no prophets are left, and none of us knows how long this will be” (Psa. 74:4-9).

Turning to an Awareness of the God to Whom We Are Praying

An important lesson to learn in prayer is that ultimately we need to be concerned about God and His reputation and the extension of His kingdom and purposes. Revival really isn’t about us having better meetings or being happy. It is about God’s Name being exalted and more praise and honor given to Him on this planet. Notice that the Psalmist asked God to go to work, because He is the one being reviled and mocked through the attacks on His people. Note also that this portion of the Psalm then moves into a wonderful expression of recognizing God’s power and ability to handle any attack. It is as we understand the awesome power of the One we are addressing in prayer, that our faith will grow and we will begin to pray in a way that moves the hand of God.

“How long will the enemy mock You, O God? Will the foe revile Your name forever? Why do You hold back Your hand, Your right hand? Take it from the folds of Your garment and destroy them!

“But You, O God, are my king from of old; You bring salvation upon the earth. It was You who split open the sea by Your power; You broke the heads of the monster in the waters. It was You who crushed the heads of Leviathan and gave him as food to the creatures of the desert. It was You who opened up springs and streams; You dried up the ever flowing rivers. The day is Yours, and Yours also the night; You established the sun and moon. It was You who set all the boundaries of the earth; You made both summer and winter” (Psa. 74:10-17).

The Request for Revival

Once again, this prayer is focused upon the honor of God and the integrity of His covenant with His people. The concern is for the Lord and how He is perceived by the nations. The cry for God to rise up and defend His cause will mean that Israel will once again walk in right relationship to their God. When He prospers them, they cry that God will be honored, not only by Israel, but by those nations in the area who see how He protects and prospers His people when they obey Him.

“Remember how the enemy has mocked You, O LORD, how foolish people have reviled Your name. Do not hand over the life of Your dove to wild beasts; do not forget the lives of Your afflicted people forever. Have regard for Your covenant, because haunts of violence fill the dark places of the land. Do not let the oppressed retreat in disgrace; may the poor and needy praise Your name. Rise up, O God, and defend Your cause; remember how fools mock You all day long. Do not ignore the clamor of Your adversaries, the uproar of Your enemies, which rises continually” (Psa. 74:18-23).

Our Prayer.

Martin Luther

Prayer is a strong wall and fortress of the church; it is a goodly Christian weapon.

Phillips Brooks

Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men! Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers. Pray for power equal to your tasks.

by JUSTIN TAYLOR; 02/20/13

Howard Hendricks (1924-2013)

Howard G. Hendricks, known to the Dallas Theological Seminary community and beyond simply as “Prof,” saw his Lord face to face this morning. He was 88 years old.

Hendricks received a bachelor’s degree from Wheaton College (1946) and a Master of Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary (1950). From there he and his Jeanne moved to Fort Worth, Texas, where he became the pastor of Calvary Independent Presbyterian Church (now Calvary Bible Church). In the fall of 1951 he began teaching twice a week at Dallas. After one year he resigned to pursue a doctorate at Yale. But the founding president of the seminary, Lewis Sperry Chafer, died before the 1952 school year began, and theology department chairman John Walvoord was appointed president. Walvoord contacted Hendricks and asked him to delay his doctorate in order to teach at the seminary full time. He would eventually go on to earn a D.D. from Wheaton College Graduate School in 1967 while continuing to teach at Dallas. He taught at the school for a remarkable 60 years before officially retiring.

For the rest of the post…

Dr. Billy Graham

The Christian life is not a constant high. I have my moments of deep discouragement. I have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes, and say, ‘O God, forgive me,’ or ‘Help me.’

Billy Graham

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