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“Your preaching can’t possibly triumph without prayer”

~ David Eby, Power Preaching for Church Growth41.

“To arouse one man or woman to the tremendous power of prayer for others, is worth more than the combined activity of a score of average Christians.” 

~ A. J. Gordon 

The Church’s authority comes from the ascended Christ. The Church’s ministry comes from the ascended Christ. Therefore, the church’s activity  ought to be praying to the ascended Christ, worshiping Him, asking Him to release His power in us so that by His authority we might be involved in his ministry.  

Warren W. WiersbeSomething Happens When Churches Pray15.

I am not minimizing the importance of individual prayer. I am emphasizing the power of prayer. The first church meeting referred to in the Book of the Acts was a prayer meeting. I think we have reversed this.  I think our priorities have gotten confused…God does so many wonderful things when the church meets together to pray.

Warren W. WiersbeSomething Happens When Churches Pray14-15.

NEW LETTER ASKS BELIEVERS TO JOIN MR. GRAHAM IN NOVEMBER’S MY HOPE OUTREACH

February 26, 2013 – “The goal is to share the love and hope of the Gospel with people in every corner of America, in every neighborhood possible, during 2013,” Billy Graham writes in his new prayer letter.
Billy Graham: Real Hope Starts with Prayer

Will you join me, beginning today, to pray for our nation by praying for specific people you know, asking God to seek them and draw them to Himself?

By Billy Graham

Dear Friend,

A few weeks ago I received an invitation to join some old friends, people I’ve known for years, at a dinner in Washington. I didn’t feel I had the stamina to make the trip, so Franklin went in my place.

He gave the opening prayer. After dinner a nationally respected opinion researcher, a pollster, walked over and said, “Franklin, this should be a year of great harvest. This really is a perfect time to show people the path to real hope.” He explained that he constantly monitors what Americans are thinking. “I can tell you that anxiety is extraordinarily high right now among Americans. Fear is crowding out hope in so many people’s lives. People are anxious about everything, especially about the future.”

You and I simply need to look around us to know this is true. I feel a deep burden for so many Americans who live with no lasting hope.

We can help them find it.

Start with prayer—my prayers and your prayers. As Christians, we often pray for the sick, for each other, for the nation, and many regularly pray for “the lost,” but we should also pray by name for specific lost people.

In the familiar parable Jesus told about the lost sheep (see Luke 15), the shepherd did not go out to see if he could find just any stray sheep he might come across. He went searching for a sheep, a particular sheep. Pray that way, for specific lost people.

We may pray for a person to find God, but Jesus said it the other way around—He said that He came “to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10, NIV). Jesus does the seeking, and the Holy Spirit opens a person’s heart. That’s what we should be praying for. The first convert to Christ in Europe, that we know about, was a businesswoman in Ephesus named Lydia, a dealer in fine fabric. The Bible says God “opened her heart to respond to the things spoken” (Acts 16:14, NASB). There is no other way to get an unsaved person to respond. It took me years to understand this. We may pray for the preaching and pray for someone to turn to God, but the preaching will have little effect and the person will not make a decision to turn without the Holy Spirit.

When we pray urgently and faithfully by name for lost people we truly care about, asking God to reach them, God works—often in unique and unexpected ways—to open hearts to Himself.

For the rest of the post…

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

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.

Heavenly Father,

We have sinned against you in thought, word and deed. We have turned away like sheep and went our own way. We decided in our hearts to do our own thing. We have not prayed or obeyed our word. You promise peace and forgiveness and mercy if we repent and turn back to you! Lord, we set our focus on you and plead for revival to sweep through your church!

In Jesus Name! Amen! 

“Revival is the Church of God as a conquering army putting to rout the hosts of hell.”

~ James A. Stewart

May 2017
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