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Prayer is Necessary

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Prayer is: 1 – A Necessity NV 6/3/01 am

OS: A “Doctor I’m hurting all over! When I touch my leg it hurts, my arm it hurts…”  After several test the doctor found the problem…broke finger. Maybe not that easy, but sometimes its easy to miss the obvious.

We go here and there, do this and do that, the whole American mindset is the six “B’s” Be Busy Be Busy Be Busy. If we are busy we are successful and we carry that over into our Christian lives and our Church life. Doing this ministry and that ministry and this activity and this and we’re Juggling all this at once…..But, What about prayer? Could it be that we have missed something so obvious? It is impossible to be busy about being a Christian, if we are not busy about prayer! It is impossible to be busy about ministry and being the church if we are not busy about prayer!

B Jesus said, My House shall be called a house of prayer…

          We stand on the brink of change, growth, greater wide spread ministry, and challenge. And I am out of my league. The things that are happening now are to big for me, and they are to big for Northview. We stand where God has brought us, and God will provide all we need to be His church. But we must believe and we must ask. There is no greater time than now that we must be people of faith, and people of prayer.

I.      We are beginning A Series of Series’ on Prayer

A.     Four Lessons on What is it; Four … How you do it; Examples in the Bible.

B.      This will be our focus because it’s got to be my focus.

II.   Prayer deserves the preaching time.

A.     Because Mark 11:17, ”‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’

B.      As a church we are to:

1.     Love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength.

2.     Love our Neighbor as ourselves.

3.     Go into all the world and teach the gospel.

C.     C Until we become a house of prayer we cannot be the house of God fulfilling our mission!

1.     Prayer comes before ministry.

2.     Jesus never taught His disciples how to preach and teach, but He taught them how to pray.

III. So we begin this morning with “What is Prayer?”

A.     I want to go deeper than talking about the process, and what it is such as conversation with God.

B.      What is prayer in the category of why?

1.     It is an absolute necessity to be a Christian!

2.     It is an absolute necessity to be God’s Church!

UW: “Why?”

I.      D Prayer is necessary, first of all, because Jesus ascended back to the Father.

A.        * John 1412 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.  13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father.  14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

1.     Jesus tells His disciples that He’s leaving and returning to the Father, and now they must pray, and because He is there by the Father’s side they and we can be assured of an answer.

2.     As disciples of Jesus we must do His works, in His name, for the glory of God the Father.

B.      We will come back to this text in the next series, but just a little clue.

1.     Jesus stands by the Father’s side.

C.     Illustration with the fair tickets. (Because his son asked for the strange little boy, he gave him a ticket also.)

II.   E Secondly, prayer is necessary because God, through His Word, directs His people to pray.

A.        There are numerous passages of direct command concerning prayer.

                             1.          75 times we find the word ‘pray’ in the NT. Not counting “ask”

                             2.          *1 Thessalonians 5:17, “Pray Continually”.

                             3.          *James 5 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

                             4.          *Jude 20 But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.

B.        It is through prayer that we put on our Christian armor. ( F Ephesians 6)

C.        To pray is to follow the example of Christ in Scripture.

                             1.          Wilderness (Temptation and Prayer)

                             2.          Often withdrawing

                             3.          Transfiguration

                             4.          Garden

III.           G Third, prayer is necessary because God chooses to act on it.

A.        Note these passages:

                             1.          *Hebrews 13 18 Pray for us. We are sure that we have a clear conscience and desire to live honorably in every way.  19 I particularly urge you to pray so that I may be restored to you soon.

                             2.          *James 5  2 You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God.  3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

B.        Failure to Pray leads to a failure to minister to ourselves and others in need. We must seek and ask God to act on our behalf and on the behalf of others. Parable of Jesus about Prayer – H Luke 11:

                             1.          The Friend is God who has what you need, and what others need.

                             2.          vs. 6, “I have nothing to set before him”

                             3.          Do these words not echo our own from time to time?

a.           “Lord, my neighbor is lost and dying of cancer – and I have nothing to set before him.”

b.          “Lord, I have a teenage daughter facing severe temptation – and I have nothing to set before her.”

c.          “Lord, the man I work with …his home is breaking up-and I have nothing to set before him.”

d.          “Lord, there are thousands in this community who are lost-and I have nothing to set before them.”

C.        I Hebrews 4 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

                             1.          If we don’t learn to knock boldly at the Father’s door, our breadboxes will become empty.

                             2.          If a man gets hungry enough, he’ll eat bread from a garbage can! If he walks away from the church empty handed, the devil will be waiting with plenty of garbage can bread!

J Prayer is a Necessity! Only by being a praying church can we be God’s church!

Jesus has returned to the Father. He is no longer bodily with His people, so prayer is a must.

God has commanded our prayer.

God acts when we pray. Do not fool yourself into thinking you can go it alone!

You don’t have to live your life by chance. You can pray!

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