Part 3

April 8, 2018


BEFORE we begin, if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, take a moment to name your sins to God the Father. This will allow you to be filled with the power of The Holy Spirit as you read this booklet (EPH 5:18 & 1JO 1:9). IF YOU HAVE never believed in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you have that opportunity right now. Simply tell God the Father that you are believing on His Son Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. If you make that decision, you are now a believer and will always be a child of God! When you die, you will spend eternity with Him forever in heaven! (JOH 3:16 & ACT 16:31).


Now, let’s look at how to approach God in Prayer. As we learned, all prayer is offered to God the Father, not to Jesus Christ or to the Holy Spirit. Any prayer offered to Christ is automatically cancelled, since it fails to follow God’s protocol for prayer. This is perfectly illustrated by Jesus Christ in MAT 6:9: “Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.’” The Channel of approach is through our High Priest, Jesus Christ. The Power of approach to prayer is the Filling of God The Holy Spirit: With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit… (EPH 6:18.)


You should understand that God has encouraged us to pray through promises He has made in the Bible.  One such promise is found in MAT 7:7-8: Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.


There are also promises about prayer related to the Faith-Rest Drill. The Faith-Rest Drill is one of the Ten Problem-Solving Devices (Tools) that God gave us to carry out His Pre-Designed Plan for the Church-Age. With respect to prayer, the Faith-Rest Drill involves praying, then resting and putting faith in The Lord by leaving the problem in His Hands. Look at MARK 11:24: Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you. This verse encourages you to have faith in God for whatever you pray for. In the Old Testament, The Lord said to Jeremiah: “Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” (JER 33:3) In PSA 4:1, King David proclaims: Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have relieved me in my distress; Be gracious to me and hear my prayer.


In ISA 65:24, we read: It will also come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear. Every legitimate prayer that ever was uttered in history was heard by God in eternity past. And if it was a legitimate prayer, it was included in God’s Decree.

As a believer, your effectiveness in prayer depends on how well you live the spiritual life. In JOH 15:7 Jesus Christ says this: If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. He is saying that if His Words are resident in your soul, your prayers will be answered. This is why daily intake of Bible doctrine is so important.

The effectiveness of your prayer life is related to the integrity of God. God is eternally Blessed with the Integrity and Power to answer prayer. God is has the Divine Ability to answer prayer from His Essence with emphasis on Divine Integrity and Omnipotence.


As we have noted, there are two categories of prayer requests: Intercessory and Petition.  We’ll now look at each in more detail.


The Doctrine of Intercession


The dynamics of intercessory prayer are mentioned in Elijah’s prayer on Mount Carmel which demonstrates the power of intercessory prayer for the nation: Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit.  (JAM 5:16‑18) In this scenario, Elijah taught us the five components for effective intercessory prayers.


Frist, you should pray in private. 1KINGS 18:42 teaches us that Elijah was alone when he prayed: So Ahab went up to eat and drink. But Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he crouched down on the earth and put his face between his knees. It’s important to be alone with God in order to hear His Voice in response to your prayers.  MAT 6:6 teaches us this: But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you. In MARK 1:35, we see Our Lord’s example: In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there. This does not mean that there is no place for public prayer – there definitely is – like in Church or in a prayer group.  But God likes intimacy with His children in prayer.


Second, you should have humility resident in your soul when you pray. Elijah was humble in offering his prayer as demonstrated by his crouching down. Humility in prayer is recognizing God’s complete sufficiency and our insufficiency to meet a need or problem.


Third, be specific and precise in your prayers. God wants to hear from you about all that you desire and need, so be specific and ask in detail what it is you want for others or your own need. But remember, it should be God’s Will that we pray for. So pray to God that His Will be accomplished concerning someone’s health or your fear about something. Elijah prayed specifically for rain, as an example: Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. (JAM 5:17)


JAM 5:17 also teaches us to be persistent in our prayers. Elijah did not quit when his prayer was not answered. He was persistent and prayed again and again until he received God’s response.  Keep praying until you receive an answer to what you asked for from God. And be prepared that it might not be what you wanted. God knows all so trust His Response.

The fourth component of intercessory prayer is expectancy. This means you should always be ready to move into action when you receive God’s answer. Upon receiving an answer to his prayer, Elijah acted quickly after God’s response as we read in 1 Kings 18:44-46: It came about at the seventh time, that he said, “Behold, a cloud as small as a man’s hand is coming up from the sea.” And he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot and go down, so that the heavy shower does not stop you.’” In a little while the sky grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a heavy shower. And Ahab rode and went to Jezreel. Then the hand of the Lord was on Elijah, and he girded up his loins and outran Ahab to Jezreel.  There is no reason to procrastinate when God makes His answer clear.


The power of prevailing prayer is demonstrated in ACTS 12: Now about that time Herod the king laid hands on some who belonged to the church in order to mistreat them. And he had James the brother of John put to death with a sword. When he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also. Now it was during the days of Unleavened Bread. When he had seized him, he put him in prison, delivering him to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out before the people. So Peter was kept in the prison, but prayer for him was being made fervently by the church to God. On the very night when Herod was about to bring him forward, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and guards in front of the door were watching over the prison. And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter’s side and woke him up, saying, “Get up quickly.” And his chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” And he went out and continued to follow, and he did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and second guard, they came to the iron gate that leads into the city, which opened for them by itself; and they went out and went along one street, and immediately the angel departed from him.

When Peter came to himself, he said, “Now I know for sure that the Lord has sent forth His angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.” And when he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying. When he knocked at the door of the gate, a servant-girl named Rhoda came to answer. When she recognized Peter’s voice, because of her joy she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter was standing in front of the gate. They said to her, “You are out of your mind!” But she kept insisting that it was so. They kept saying, “It is his angel.” But Peter continued knocking; and when they had opened the door, they saw him and were amazed. But motioning to them with his hand to be silent, he described to them how the Lord had led him out of the prison. And he said, “Report these things to James and the brethren.” Then he left and went to another place.

   Now when day came, there was no small disturbance among the soldiers as to what could have become of Peter. When Herod had searched for him and had not found him, he examined the guards and ordered that they be led away to execution. Then he went down from Judea to Caesarea and was spending time there. Now he was very angry with the people of Tyre and Sidon; and with one accord they came to him, and having won over Blastus the king’s chamberlain, they were asking for peace, because their country was fed by the king’s country. On an appointed day Herod, having put on his royal apparel, took his seat on the rostrum and began delivering an address to them. The people kept crying out, “The voice of a god and not of a man!” And immediately an angel of the Lord struck him because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and died. But the word of the Lord continued to grow and to be multiplied. And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem when they had fulfilled their mission, taking along with them John, who was also called Mark.

{to be continued}

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