WANT HELP ON HOW TO PRAY?

Want help on how to pray then look no further than the seven (really six) important prayer points that Paul gives us:

Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith. But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one. And we have confidence in the Lord about you, that you are doing and will do the things that we command. May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 3:1-5

2 Chronicles 7;14

1. Paul primarily prays that the Gospel will go forth speedily so this needs to be our priority in prayer as well. We are to pray that God’s glorious Gospel would keep going forward unhindered. Not only that the Gospel would go forward, but it would “be honored.” Paul has in mind here that the Gospel would be accepted and respected as saving truth. He reminds the Church that this is how the Gospel was received among them. It was joyously received.

2. Paul asks that we pray to be delivered from the evil/wicked ones. There are several aspects of deliverance that are in mind here.

Deliverance from those that are wicked. In the context of the local church, those that attend are a mixed crop of wheat and tares (Matthew 13:24-30). Simply put, some are Christians and some are not. Sometimes those non-believers are major sources of conflict, luring others away to sin, and doctrinal perversity

Deliverance from those that are evil – those actively and aggressively promoting sin, bringing hardships, and conflicts.

3. We need to ask God to make us stable/strong in Him. This encompasses faith, doctrine, trust, and other issues relating to God strengthening His people.

4. He will guard us against the wiles of Satan and his demons.

5. He will teach us to be obedient to the Holy Spirit’s leading and to His Word. That our minds would be renewed by His Word.

6. Pray that God would direct our hearts. Here, Paul prays that Christian hearts would be directed specifically into the love of God and the steadfastness of Christ.

To the love of God – this could involve both being directed to God’s love as well as the believer loving God more. Either case would have a major impact on a believer’s sanctification. A deep love for God and dwelling on God’s deep love for the believer drowns out lesser loves and affections.

To the steadfastness (patience) of Christ – How often do you reflect on the patience of Christ? Specifically, why He is patient with his children? There is divine patience that the believer experiences because of who they are in Christ. There is rest and peace that is found in the completed work of Christ and is a reminder that there is no more condemnation for the believer. This prayer could also be for Christlike patience. Which of us couldn’t use more of that?

7. In conclusion, there is no better thing for us to regularly pray for ourselves, our pastors and for each other than successful delivery of the Gospel, deliverance from evil men, for the Lord to make us stable, protect us from evil, and guide us into obedience. Along with those things, we should pray that our love and endurance would blossom as we look at Christ.

PRAY EXPECTANTLY

Do you pray expecting God to answer? In this prayer, note what David says after pleading his case; he watches expectantly. David expects God to respond.

Listen to my words, Lord; consider my sighing. Pay attention to the sound of my cry, my King and my God, for I pray to You. At daybreak, Lord, You hear my voice; at daybreak I plead my case to You and watch expectantly. Psalms 5:1-3

Notice how specific David’s prayers were and how specific God’s replies.

And David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I pursue after this band? Shall I overtake them?” He answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake and shall surely rescue.” 1 Samuel 30:8

After this David inquired of the Lord, “Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah?” And the Lord said to him, “Go up.” David said, “To which shall I go up?” And he said, “To Hebron.2 Samuel 2:1

God always prepares His servants, His people to do the job He calls them to do. Note, how God prepared the people to follow Joshua just as they did Moses. Likewise God will prepare you and all those that are to work with you, to do the job He has called you to do.

The Lord said to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.Joshua 3:7

Just as God had Moses part the Red Sea to allow the Israelites to cross, he also had Joshua part the Jordan River to allow the Israelites to enter the Promised Land.

Then Joshua told the Israelites, “Come closer and listen to the words of the Lord your God.” He said: “You will know that the living God is among you and that He will certainly dispossess before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites, and Jebusites when the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth goes ahead of you into the Jordan... When the feet of the priests who carry the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, come to rest in the Jordan’s waters, its waters will be cut off. The water flowing downstream will stand up in a mass.” Joshua 3:9-13

There is power in prayer. When men work they work but when men pray, God works,

Just as David is a great example of how to pray correctly, sadly he also shows us what happens to our relationship with God when we sin as grievously as David did. First, we notice it separates us from God. God uses Nathan to tell David about the extensive consequences of his sin of killing Uriah and taking his wife Bathsheba.

Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’ Thus says the Lord, ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you out of your own house. And I will take your wives before your eyes and give them to your neighbour, and he shall lie with your wives in the sight of this sun. For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel and before the sun.David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” And Nathan said to David, “The Lord also has put away your sin; you shall not die. Nevertheless, because by this deed you have utterly scorned the Lord, the child who is born to you shall die.” 2 Samuel 12:10-14

Note this prayer of thanksgiving by David well after the grievous sin involving Uriah and Bathsheba. He had learnt an important lesson: “kept myself from sinning“.

He (Lord) rescued me from my powerful enemy and from those who hated me, for they were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my distress, but the Lord was my support. He brought me out to a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me. The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; He repaid me according to the cleanness of my hands. For I have kept the ways of the Lord and have not turned from my God to wickedness. Indeed, I have kept all His ordinances in mind and have not disregarded His statutes. I was blameless before Him and kept myself from sinning. So the Lord repaid me according to my righteousness, according to my cleanness in His sight.” 2 Samuel 22:18-25