Topical - Prayer - 10 Steps Persistent Prayer
1 Thessalonians 5:17
Praying without ceasing, to pray at all times, continual, persistent, incessant prayer is an essential part of Christian living & it flows out of dependence on God.
1. Two Parables the Lord Jesus gave.
These Two Parables Are Unique:
All other parables relate to God by comparison; in some way they are like God, they are like God’s kingdom, they are like the way God operates. These two parables relate to God by contrast, they are not like God. These are the only two parables that Jesus gave that relate to God in a contrasting way. These two parables show us illustrations of someone who is utterly unlike God & in so doing make a very strong point about this matter of persistent praying without ceasing.
a) The Parable of the Reluctant Friend (Luke 11:1-13)
1) The Contrast – If a reluctant friend will do something for you because your persistent, imagine what a God who is not reluctant will do if your persistent, that’s the contrast. Praying without ceasing moves the hand of God!
b) The Parable of the Woman & Judge (Luke 18:1-8).
c) We are Not Heard For our Many Words (meaningless repetition; Matthew 6:7)
1) God Hears Our Hearts Cry not the Number of Our Words or heartless babble.
2. The Prayer life of our Lord Jesus Christ
a) Their times and places:
1) Early in morning Mark 1:35; 6:46
2) In secret Mark 6:46; Luke 5:16; Luke 9:18
3) With others Luke 11:1
4) On mountain Matt. 14:23
b) Jesus prayed before several major critical points:
1) Before the Spirit’s descent (Lk.3:21–22), the naming of the twelve (Lk.6:12), the transfiguration (Lk.9:18), Peter’s testing (Lk.22:31–32), His arrest, trial, and crucifixion (Lk.22:41–45).
c) Their Fervency & Intensity of Our Lords Prayers.
1) Hebrews 5:7 offered up prayers with loud crying and tears
2) Luke 22:39-44 being in agony His sweat became like great drops of blood.
3) Matthew 26:38-46 He prayed for three consecutive times.
(a) Insight To Our Lords Prayer Life.
1. Jesus did many mighty works while on this earth. In none of them is there any apparent expenditure of energy.
2. There is no indication whatsoever in the Holy Scriptures that would indicate any agonizing in the process of performing that miracle.
3. We do see Jesus agonizing in one thing, prayer.
4) This Continual Incessant Prayer Life Marked the Early Church.
(a) Acts 1:14; 2:42; 6:4; 12:5
(b) 1 Thessalonians 3:10; Ephesians 6:18
1. God is found by those who seek Him with all there heart
2. Wrestling in prayer prevails with God
3. A righteous man prevails much say James
5) Colossians 4:12 always laboring fervently for you in prayers
(a) Laboring earnestly is from agoµnizomai, from which our English word agonize is derived.
1. It is used in 1 Corinthians 9:25 to speak of the grueling competition endured by athletes in the games.
2. In John 18:36 it is translated, “fight.”
3. Related words appearing Romans 15:30, to speak of fighting in prayer, and Luke 22:44, in reference to Jesus’ agony in Gethsemane. Epaphras was a living example of Paul’s command to the Colossians in 4:2 to “devote yourselves to prayer.”
B. Ten Motives For Prayer.
Am I motivated to pray when I don’t pray as I ought?
I believe these produce an unceasing prayer life.
1. A Desire For the Lords Glory
Matthew 6:9 — "In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. (Matthew 6:9-10 NKJV)
Daniel 9:10 — when Daniel set out to pray in Chapter 9, it was the longing for God’s glory that made Daniel pray. He prayed that God would forgive the people, that God would forgive their sin, and he prayed that God would accomplish His promise. God had said that I am going to keep you in captivity only so many years, and then I am going to free you. When Daniel was reading Jeremiah he found that and he said, “God I want you to do that, I want your kingdom to come, your will to be done, your promise to be fulfilled, I want you to forgive your people, I want you to do this for your own sake (9:19). This is the climactic plea of Daniel. He asks God to hear and answer because of who He is and what He has promised. No good thing rests upon Israel. Daniel doesn’t plead because he is Daniel. Rather, he associates himself with his people and says, “We have sinned,” including himself, you see. God’s name is at stake, and Daniel is deeply concerned about the name of God and the glory of God. This is the basis for his plea.
What he is saying here is, God if you do this it will enhance your reputation, it will exhalt you name, it will glorify you, do it for your sake. I believe that that may be the supreme motive for all motives in prayer is a desire for the Lords glory. When we pray we pray that Jesus be lifted up, that God would be exhaled & glorified. Your doing it because that’s a burden on our heart, we will be like David saying, “zeal for Your house has eaten me up, And the reproaches of those who reproach You have fallen on me. (Psalms 69:9 NKJV), David cried out for the Lord to be lifted up.
When our hearts long that God be glorified we will find ourselves praying to that end. You’re going to find yourself in an unceasing cry to God, “be exalted, be glorified, be lifted up, accomplish your purpose, build your kingdom, do your will