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* * * EFFECTUAL FERVENT PRAYER AVAILETH MUCH * * *
The time came that you prayed unto God and asked of Him a certain thing to help your everyday walk, but now you seem to be riding along in limbo, trying to understand if the prayer will be answered, or if it already has been answered, what makes the difference? Why doesn't God answer immediately? When praying to God and asking of Him to affect something pertaining to your life, what should you consider? Is it ok to ask God for anything, and if not why not?
We are not given all the prayers that people in the Bible have or did pray unto God, but we do have sufficient information to guide our prayer life that might just help us in our faith and our daily walk with Christ. Consider Daniel, we are given the prayers that God deemed necessary for us to understand more about our life under evil empires and how we are to make petition unto God at those times of both adversity and praise. Daniel in the Lion's den, Daniel's confession for both himself and his people who have sinned most greatly against God, Daniel the revealer of the dreams of the leaders of the empire, inparticularly, king Nebuchadnezzar, which eventually, God used Daniel's prayers and revelations given to him to lead the king to recognize his need for salvation and to honor God as 'the' God of all Creation. Then consider king David, who was interrupted for his sins against Bathsheba, her husband, David's loyal commander, and the Psalms of David as he wept bitterly for that which had infected himself in the flesh. Or that of Paul, who besought God three times that his thorn in the flesh be removed, and God replied His grace was sufficient for Paul, could this be a most needful key unto us today, is God's grace sufficient for you, or are you overwhelmed with loneliness, depression, financial, marital, single, children, and the list could jump on and on, indeed there are problems enough for everyday, isn't there? Let's suppose God answered your prayers just the way you have petitioned for Him to accomplished, and let's just use money for the player of our request, and let's say the idea that you have presented is to win the lottery, as that seems to be one of the most public-vocal prayers of our day. As many do today, they tell God if He were to allow them to win the 200 million dollar lottery, they would give a third to the Church, have you ever watched the movie with Burt Reynolds where he did something similar and then began bargaining with God about the amount Burt would give unto Him? Finally, Burt comes to the conclusion, what would God need with paper, or with money, as God already owns all of Creation including all the wealth upon the earth, so Burt chiseled God out, with the movie ending with Dom Deluise chasing Burt along the ocean with a knife to kill him, and then the bargaining resumes. So if you chase the request or petition you make with God about the lottery what is at the base of the prayer, isn't it greed? Suppose you have the chance to win the 200 million or you could have a more surer chance with 25 million, but you only have enough money to purchase one ticket, which would you shoot for the 25 or the 200, after all, if it is meant for you to win, would not the 200 give you more of an opportunity to help others? Let us break it down just a little bit further, you have the same opportunity to help others even now, without winning the 200 million, are you doing as much today, as you think you would do tomorrow if you won? Are you praying for those out of work, those in the danger zones of the military, police, fire, the government, your neighbors, the clerks at the store, your fellow employees, are you even praying for those whom you claim to love, and if you claim to love them, are we not commanded to love our neighbors as ourselves, when Christ was on the cross, did He not say, Son behold thy mother, mother behold thy son, speaking of those standing about the cross? Do you have a thankful heart, do you tell God daily how much you love and appreciate His great love for you, do you tell Christ how much you appreciate His taking your place on the cross, and instead of punishing you, instead He has rewarded you with grace and eternal security, a promise given you that you will never be in want, need, or separated again from the Father, as Christ is busy reconciling both you and yours back unto God. Why do I say Christ is reconciling you back unto the Father, wasn't that accomplished at the cross, yes, but do you fully understand your reconciliation back unto the Father? It is not for the Father's benefit that you are in the process of reconciliation but it is for your understanding what that implies, and so it is with prayer, most people today would accept Christ if all their prayers were to be answered as soon as they were petition, but what good would it do them, if they were never to grasp why, and what faith is doing in their lives, faith is growing you up, not only as a child of the living God, but also as a person whom God is investing His time to mature you and conform you like unto His precious Son, Jesus Christ, you do have a desire to be Christlike don't you? Look to the prayers of Christ and what were the prayers He prayed for Himself, many would state that when He prayed, "O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." pay close attention to the wording of Christ, was He really stating He did not want to go to the cross, as some assert, or was He in affrimation with the Father, that He must drink of this cup? Give it a little thought, would it be love going to the cross for you and I, if Christ did not desire to fulfill the penalty of sin, at such a great cost, if He did not find a certain amount of joy in releasing you and I from the clutches of the evil one? Love willingly came to earth and put on human flesh and love joyed in setting the captives free, and love took command over His own flesh with the dropping of blood in His sweat, in the garden, placing the flesh under submission to the Father and the Spirit, and if the Father would only be pleased with the sacrifice of His only Begotten Son, and if the Son then turned to the Father and stated that maybe He could get out of this at this last moment, what would that state about Peter and Paul and the others who willfully went to their deaths proclaiming Jesus Christ, and what of Stephen? So to whom was Christ stating all of this for, Himself, or was it necessary to show to Peter, James and John, that there would be no other way possible for men and women to be saved except Christ go to the cross and give His life willfully for theirs? If we see Jesus wanting to leave off the cross, then we have a major problem with our own death when the time comes, or perhaps, in our life when we are called to give testimony to others, if we say unto the Father, 'Well LORD you know Jesus did not want to go to the cross, so I am like unto Him, I don't want to witness to this person, they may not like me if I do" is this not the conditioning of the Church today? Ministers, used to know the Bible and used to affirm that Christ was illustrating even at this great time of His soon cross of death, that there was only One that could take this cup, and it was the very One to whom the Father stated, " This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." and the ministers knew that to state this any other way was to state that Christ was doubting His role and going to the cross. Can we affirm this in another often misquoted as emotional display as the ministers would have us to believe today, look at Hebrews 5:7-9 and particularily at the words 'in that he feared; yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; being made perfect' where does this take place? First, in the garden of Gethsemane, where Christ offered up strong crying and tears, but take note as to how the verse begins (all verses follow below), "Who in the days of his flesh", this then is how it must be interpreted as to the flesh of Christ in which there was NO sin, for it is known and understood Christ was to be the Lamb without spot, and the perfect sacrifice (this should make you realize why the Bible is being re-written and re-interpreted today, the time is indeed at hand), but if Christ is the perfect sacrifice and He is, then when does fear, obedience, and perfection make it's play? Remember, in 1 John 4:18, that 'perfect love casteth out fear' and Christ is the perfect Lamb of God, so the 'where' is very, very important, and that place was upon the cross when Christ cried out, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?", now, we can see the 'fear' of being alone, for the Father cannot look upon sin, and that is precisely what occurred at this hour, Christ who knew no sin, took our sin, and delivered it unto hell, payment rendered, and hell could not hold Him as He was the perfect Son of God, and experienced all of that which His Creation will experience, including preaching to those in hell and securing the keys to both death and hell, but His flesh was not touched by the sin nor corrupted. Somewhere along the line, perhaps, you have been longing to know and understand the Word of God, if you have, I hope in some small or great way, God has encouraged you to keep praying and seeking the only 'One' who could affect and effect any change that can occur in your life, and if God does it, it will remain, if we do it, it will come to ruin. 682012 shep * * "For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:" Isaiah 28:10*
Matthew 26:36-45 "Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done. And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners."
Mark 14:35-36 "And he went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt." * Luke 22:40-46 "And when he was at the place, he said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation. And he was withdrawn from them about a stone's cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And when he rose up from prayer, and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow, And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation." * Hebrews 5:7-9 "Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;"
* John 10:1-18 "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father." *
John 15:12-17 "This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. These things I command you, that ye love one another." *
I Corinthians 9:16-18 "For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me. What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel." *
I Peter 5:1-4 "The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away." *
I John 4:17-21 "Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us. If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also."
John 1:29-36 "The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God. Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!" *
Matthew 27:45-46 "Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
* Mark 15:33-34 "And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" *
Acts 2:29-32 "Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses." * Luke 11:9-13 "And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?"
* Header Verse: "Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." James 5:13-16