Prayer

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When will the people of Britain ever learn?


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Britain is under the judgment and wrath of God (as usual!).

The people of Britain are all about SELF and doing everything they can to go AGAINST Almighty God and His word, the Holy Bible. So it’s no wonder that He will allow floods, storms, and droughts to come upon this land until the people repent.

britain_drought_before_after

Judgment from God is not always about torrential downpours and flooding, which happens in Britain a lot, but can also come as a chronic drought.

I’m reminded of theses verses in Haggai:

Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the LORD. Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house. Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit. And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains, and upon the corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the oil, and upon that which the ground bringeth forth, and upon men, and upon cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands. – Haggai 1:7-11.

 

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9 things that will help you in your Bible studies


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Here are nine things to help you in your study of God’s word:

Get a King James Bible

Anything other than an Authorized Version King James Holy Bible will hinder your spiritual growth and understanding. Use the Book that God gave us!

Develop a regular reading habit

We are indeed commanded to study the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15), but don’t forget to spend some time each day reading it too. Regular reading will familiarise yourself with its vocabulary, characters, precious promises, valuable lessons, and doctrinal truths. The more familiar you become with God’s word the more you’ll enjoy it.

Have a Bible with you always

God’s word is your spiritual food and your weapon; make sure you have one with you everywhere you go. Keep one in your bag, your car, next to your bed for reading, one in your office, and so on.

Pray for wisdom and understanding

The Author of the Bible is ALIVE! He can help you understand it (James 1:5; 1 John 2:27; 1 Kings 3:5-12). When was the last time you asked the Lord for understanding?

Keep your sins confessed

Keep yourself clean (1 John 1:9). God is not particularly interested in teaching His word to someone with a wicked heart (Psalms 66:18; Ezekiel 14:1-9).

Always believe what you read

To question God’s word is satanic (Genesis 3:1), so don’t ever question it. Just believe it by faith. If you can’t understand it, then at least believe it.

Make it a habit to mark your Bible

Start marking your Bible by underlining or circling special words and verses. Write important notes and references in the margins.

Thank God for all you learn

We really are unworthy to sit at the feet of our Saviour and learn, yet He commands us to do so. We should count it an honour and privilege! When you learn a new truth, no matter how small, always THANK Him! (1 Thessalonians 5:18; Romans 1:21).

Apply what you learn

James 1:22 tells us to DO the word, not just hear it. God teaches us the word because He desires to use us in His service. He feeds us that we might be healthy and strong to fight His battles. Apply what you learn as you learn. Get your basic training and then get out on the battlefield!

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Some helpful Bible verses for situations


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Afraid of circumstances

  • Mark 4:35-41
  • Romans 8:28
  • Isaiah 41:10 & 13
  • Psalms 139:8-10

Afraid of people (see also ‘Bullied’)

  • Psalms 56:9-11
  • Psalms 62:5-8
  • Psalms 27:1-3

Afraid of persecution

  • Matthew 5:11, 12
  • Hebrews 13:6-8

Afraid of the future

  • Matthew 6:25-34
  • Psalms 23
  • Psalms 55:22

Angry with people

  • Ephesians 4:29-32
  • James 1:19, 20
  • Colossians 3:12-14
  • 1 John 2:9-11

Anxious (see ‘Worried’)

Apathetic or complacent

  • John 3:17, 18, 35, 36
  • Revelation 3:15-18
  • Romans 3:22-24
  • Romans 6:23

Away from home

  • Proverbs 3:1-7
  • Psalms 91
  • Psalms 121

Bereaved (see ‘Coping with a death’)

Bitter or critical

  • Matthew 7:1-5
  • Matthew 6:14, 15
  • Hebrews 12:14, 15
  • Ephesians 4:32

Blaming God

  • Job 22:21
  • 2 Samuel 22:31
  • Jeremiah 29:11
  • Proverbs 19:3

Broken-hearted

  • Psalms 34:17, 18
  • Psalms 147:3

Bullied (see also ‘Afraid of people’)

  • Psalms 91:9-16
  • Joshua 1:9
  • Psalms 37:7-9

Choosing a career

  • Proverbs 16:3, 9
  • Romans 12:1, 2
  • Psalms 37:3-7

Conscious of sin

  • 1 John 1:5-10
  • Romans 6:23
  • Psalms 25:4-11
  • Psalms 51

Considering marriage

  • Matthew 19:4-6
  • Ephesians 5:22-33
  • Hebrews 13:4

Contemplating revenge

  • Romans 12:17-19
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:15

Coping with death (bereaved)

  • 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
  • Romans 8:38, 39
  • John 3:15, 16
  • John 14:1-4

Coping with failure

  • Hebrews 4:14-16
  • Psalms 73:26

Desperate (at your wits end)

  • Psalms 62:5-8
  • Psalms 55:22
  • 2 Corinthians 1:8-11

Distressed or troubled

  • 2 Corinthians 4:8, 9, 16-18
  • Psalms 9:9, 10
  • Romans 8:28-39
  • 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4

Doubting (see ‘Faith is weak’ and ‘Sceptical’)

  • Mark 9:17-24
  • John 20:24-31
  • John 4:50
  • 1 Corinthians 1:18-25

Envious (see also ‘Jealous’)

  • Galatians 5:22-26
  • James 3:13-16
  • Philippians 4:12, 13

Facing death

  • John 3:16
  • John 14:1-3
  • Psalms 23:4
  • 2 Timothy 4:6-8

Faith is weak (see also ‘Doubting’ and ‘Sceptical’)

  • Luke 12:22-31
  • John 14:13, 14
  • Hebrews 11
  • Matthew 8:5-13

Far from God

  • Psalms 145:17-20
  • James 4:7-10
  • Acts 17:22-28

Feeling hurt

  • 1 Peter 5:7
  • Psalms 27:13, 14
  • Hebrews 12:2, 3

Feeling inadequate

  • 1 Corinthians 1:20-31
  • 2 Corinthians 12:9, 10
  • Philippians 4:12, 13
  • Isaiah 40:28-31

Feeling lost or unwanted

  • Psalms 107:4-9
  • Luke 15:11-24
  • Luke 19:10
  • Hebrews 13:5, 6

Feeling self-righteous

  • Luke 18:9-14
  • Ephesians 2:8, 9
  • Romans 3:9-12, 21-24
  • Titus 3:3-7

Friends fail

  • 2 Timothy 4:16-18
  • Luke 17:3, 4
  • Psalms 34:18, 19
  • Deuteronomy 33:27

Ill or in pain

  • James 5:14-16
  • 2 Corinthians 12:9, 10
  • Psalms 103:1-5

In danger or threatened (see also ‘Bullied’)

  • Psalms 27:1
  • Mark 4:35-41
  • Proverbs 18:10
  • 1 Peter 3:13-17

Insulted

  • Proverbs 12:16
  • Romans 15:3, 4
  • 1 Peter 2:23

Intimidated

  • Proverbs 29:25
  • Joshua 1:9
  • Psalms 3:1-3
  • Psalms 71:1-3

Jealous (see also ‘Envious’)

  • 1 Timothy 6:6-10
  • Matthew 6:33
  • 1 John 2:15-17

Lonely

  • Psalms 23
  • Deuteronomy 31:8
  • Hebrews 13:5

Looking for a job/made redundant

  • Philippians 4:11-13
  • Proverbs 16:3, 9
  • Isaiah 48:17
  • Jeremiah 29:11

Needing comfort

  • Psalms 34:18, 19
  • 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4

Needing guidance

  • Proverbs 3:5, 6
  • Romans 12:1, 2
  • James 1:5-8
  • Psalms 32:8-10

Needing peace

  • John 14:27
  • Philippians 4:4-9
  • Romans 5:1-5
  • Isaiah 26:3, 4

Newly retired

  • Proverbs 16:3
  • Matthew 6:25-34
  • Philippians 4:12
  • Isaiah 46:4

Praying

  • 1 John 5:14, 15
  • John 14:12-14
  • Luke 11:1-13
  • Psalms 66:16-20

Resentful (see also ‘Bitter or critical’)

  • 2 Timothy 2:22-24
  • Proverbs 3:11, 12

Sceptical (see also ‘Doubting’ and ‘Faith is weak’)

  • Luke 24:36-49
  • John 6:35-40
  • John 10:25-30

Sleepless

  • Matthew 11:28-30
  • 1 Peter 5:6, 7
  • Proverbs 3:21-26:5
  • Psalms 4:8

Stressed (see also ‘Worried’)

  • Matthew 6:25-27, 34
  • 1 Peter 5:7
  • John 14:1
  • Isaiah 40:31

Tempted to: (see separate section below)

Thankful

  • Psalms 100
  • 2 Corinthians 9:10-12 & 15
  • Colossians 3:15
  • Colossians 2:6, 7

Unemployed (see ‘Looking for a job/made redundant’)

Weary

  • Matthew 11:28-30
  • 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
  • Philippians 4:13
  • Isaiah 40:28-31

Witnessing

  • Acts 1:8
  • 1 Peter 3:15
  • Matthew 10:32, 33
  • Romans 10:8-10

Worried (see also ‘Stressed’)

  • Philippians 4:6, 7
  • Nahum 1:7
  • Psalms 46
  • Isaiah 43:1-3

Tempted to …

Commit suicide

  • 1 Corinthians 10:13
  • 1 Corinthians 6:19, 20
  • Psalms 34:6
  • Psalms 31:9, 10, 14-16

Divorce

  • Mark 10:1-12
  • Romans 7:1-3
  • Malachi 2:15, 16

Drink abuse

  • Ephesians 5:18
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:6-8
  • 1 Corinthians 10:12, 13, 31
  • Proverbs 20:1

Drug abuse

  • 2 Peter 2:19
  • Romans 13:13, 14
  • Proverbs 25:28
  • Proverbs 14:12

Lie

  • Proverbs 6:16-19
  • Proverbs 19:9
  • Ephesians 4:22-25
  • Revelation 21:8

Sexual immorality

  • Galatians 5:19-24
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8
  • 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10

Steal

  • Exodus 20:15
  • Romans 13:8-10
  • Ephesians 4:28
    Hebrews 13:5
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The ‘Lord’s Prayer’ is NOT what you think it is


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READ: Matthew 6:9-15.

Pretty much every person today (Christian and non-Christian), thinks that the ‘Lord’s Prayer’ is the “Our Father” of Matthew chapter 6 and Luke Chapter 11.

After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. – Matthew 6:9-10

In verse 9, at the beginning of the prayer, notice the words “pray ye”.

Jesus never classified Himself with His listeners. Here, Jesus is telling His listeners to call God “Our Father”, distinctly showing us that this is NOT the ‘Lord’s prayer’ at all, since the Lord Jesus Christ never prayed it, is not praying it now, and never will pray it. It is a ‘Disciples’ Prayer’ given to Old Testament, Jewish disciples before the crucifixion, resurrection, and the Church Age.

“Our Father” again refers to Israel, and is never given to a Gentile to pray, nor does Christ anywhere in the Sermon on the Mount even intimate that God is “Father” to anyone but an Israelite! Gentiles do not pray this, and as Christians we don’t pray this.

Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. – Matthew 6:11-13

You cannot force the Sermon on the Mount and the so-called ‘Lord’s prayer’ into Christian practice. The Christian can follow the prayer to verse 11, but verse 12 offers some difficulties, as no Christian is forgiven on the basis of forgiving others; they are forgiven, and cleansed, when they judge their own sin and confess it to Jesus (1 Cor. 11: 30–33; 1 John 1: 9).

If a Christian’s forgiveness is conditional on forgiving others, then the atonement of Christ (not yet accomplished at this point!) is insufficient, for “forgiveness and remission” of sins are clearly said to be part of the finished work of Christ in the believer (Col. 1: 14; Acts 13: 38–40).

For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. – Matthew 6:14-15

If there was any doubt as to the ‘salvation’ involved in verse 12, it is now dispelled. The passage is teaching salvation from sin and forgiveness on the basis of WORKS.

If it isn’t ignorance, pride, or lack of study, then perhaps the reason why Christians pray this prayer is that they don’t believe in the finished work of Christ on the cross; they don’t believe in eternal security. They refuse to accept the Pauline revelation on the death and atonement of Christ for sinners.

This prayer then is addressed to God as the “Father” of a physical nation that He begat, and to which He gave birth.

READ: Isaiah 63:16, 64:8; Deuteronomy 32:5-6, 18.

Unless this Matthew passage is left in its Jewish setting, with a primary doctrinal application to the Second Coming (and an outline for a doctrinal prayer for the entire nation of Israel during the Tribulation), it will destroy the soul of the person who seeks to justify him or herself by ‘following’ its example.

READ: 1 Kings 8:22-53 for the actual model for the ‘Lord’s prayer’.

READ: John 17 for the true ‘Lord’s Prayer’.

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A Few Thoughts On Prayer


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The reason why many fail in battle is because they wait until the hour of battle. The reason why others succeed is because they have gained their victory on their knees long before the battle came…Anticipate your battles; fight them on your knees before temptation comes, and you will always have victory. R. A. Torrey

READ: Philippians 4:6.

God invites us to bring any need we face directly to His throne. This invitation is especially remarkable when we consider that it is from the God who created the universe with words (Hebrews 11:3), raised Christ from the dead (Ephesians 1:18-20), and already performed a miracle of rebirth in our lives (Ephesians 2:1-6).

  • Do you spend much time with God in prayer?
  • Do you keep track of your requests and His answers?

This is the God who has the obvious creativity and power to care for any need we have, and He invites us to bring our needs before Him. So why is it then that we do not pray as much as we should?

Pride? – like a little child who wants to care for his own needs without help, we sometimes have too high of an opinion of our ability to solve problems. We don’t recognise God’s superior power, and we think we can handle our lives on our own.

Unbelief? – sometimes, we simply don’t believe that God would answer if we did pray. Instead of bringing our requests before the Lord, we worry over them; disregarding the hundreds of promises in God’s word that He will hear us and help us when we pray.

Busyness? – it’s all too easy to fill our lives with important activities and ministry while neglecting the most important activity of seeking God’s face and power.

Praying is so critical; it is a conversation with God. How can we worship God for all eternity when we can’t even manage 5-mins down here? Well, perhaps for starters, we will see more and more and more things in eternity that we won’t have ‘time’ NOT to worship!

God loves His children coming to Him in prayer, and since prayer is our lifeline to God, to NOT pray is an insult to Him. Every ‘prayerless’ day is saying to God that you do no need Him today, and perhaps could even reflect idolatry as you are relying on yourself, or other people, or money, or something else instead.

  • Would you think that neglecting prayer is not only a weakness, but a sinful choice?

Everyday we should be asking God for wisdom, guidance, comfort, help, protection, the list goes on. It is well said that he who is a stranger to prayer will also be a stranger to God’s power.

READ: Jeremiah 33:3 – let us never face a day in battle until we have faced the Father in prayer.

A man was once cutting a tree stump with an obviously blunt axe. He was only bruising the bark as sweat poured from his beaded brow. Someone suggested that he stop for a moment and sharpen the axe, to which he replied, “I’m too busy chopping the tree to stop for anything.” If he would only stop for a moment and sharpen the axe, he would be able to slice through the tree with far greater ease.

Stop at the beginning of each day to ‘sharpen the axe’ through prayer. Seek first the kingdom of God, and you will slice through that day with far greater ease.

Some people are constantly in prayer and as such are known as ‘Prayer Warriors’, which is wonderful. But this does not make them any more spiritual than you or me. We are ALL ‘tools’ on the Creator’s ‘workbench’ – only the Craftsman can pick up the tool and use it well.

  • What do you think would be some characteristics of a ‘Prayer Warrior’?
  • Would YOU like to be known as a ‘Prayer Warrior’?

READ: 1 Thessalonians 5:17, 1:3, 2:13; Romans 1:9; 2 Timothy 1:3 – we must pray without ceasing. Whether you do this or not will depend on how much focus on and faith you have in God.

Prayer does a lot of things, but here’s three things to think about for the moment:

1. Prayer allows us to be in ‘partnership’ with God

He chooses to use us with Him in what He is already going to do. It is such a privilege! How many times have you been blessed to hear that your (constant) prayer for someone was answered in their life? Or you prayed something for someone and at that time were not sure why you were praying for that particular thing in their life, but then you later discovered the reason?

READ: Romans 8:26 – sometimes we don’t know what to pray for or most of the time it’s for self-preservation – to get out of trouble. The Holy Spirit helps us as we go through trouble by praying for us according to God’s will. The Holy Spirit:

  • Sees your trouble like you can’t see it.
  • Sees God’s purpose for it.
  • Sees Satan’s purpose for it (2 Corinthians 12:7; Job 1, 2).
  • Knows your real strength to hold up under the infirmity.
  • Knows who is watching you as you go through the infirmity.
  • Knows how you will be able to minister to others because of your infirmity.
  • Knows what kind of example you will be and how influential your example will be to future generations because of your infirmities.

You don’t see all of that, and so you don’t pray accordingly, but the Holy Spirit does. When He prays for us, He prays for us with all of that in mind. Perhaps He groans when He sees the carnality in our prayers? Perhaps He groans when He sees the delight Satan takes in making our infirmities worse? Christ wept for Lazarus in John 11:35–36, and so perhaps the Holy Spirit groans out of love for us? God has to put us through trouble, so we will grow and mature as Christians, but He takes no delight in our pain and suffering. Perhaps our sorrow touches the heart of the Spirit of God and causes Him to groan?

What a wonderful relationship we have with the Father!

2. Prayer frustrates the plans of the enemy

Our minds and thoughts may wander at times when we are in prayer. This is normally the enemy trying to interfere with our communion at that moment with God. The Devil doesn’t want us talking (and listening) to God – he doesn’t want God to answer our prayers, or for us to know the answers, because it can halt his plans.

READ: Daniel 10.

God always defeats the enemy though and turns things around. The next time all those thoughts, tasks, and distractions come in during your prayer time, just quickly jot them down on a notepad, and return to prayer again immediately. At the end of praying, not only would you have spent as much quality time with the Lord as you can (frustrating the enemy), but God has also given you your ‘To Do’ list for the day!

3. Prayer brings God joy

It is wonderful to know that we can bring delight to God simply by praying to Him (Proverbs 15:8).

READ: Revelation 8:3-4 and 5:8 – what a sweet smell our prayers are to God!

So then…

  • Pray with faith (Hebrews 11:6) – it is so sad that sometimes we have more faith in man and his things than in God Himself.
  • Pray with clean hands and a pure heart (Psalms 24:3,4) – confess your sins (1 John 1:7-9) to God daily through the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ – this is not for salvation, but for fellowship with God so that your prayers are not hindered.
  • Pray genuine heartfelt prayers rather than vain repetitions (Matthew 6:7) – keep yourself in the love of God, and you will never pray hypocritical or selfish prayers. Just talk to your heavenly Father as candidly and intimately as a young child nestled on Daddy’s lap. God wants to hear from your heart.
  • Make sure that you are praying to the God revealed in the Scriptures (Exodus 20:3-6) – Study the word; do not accept the world’s idea of who God is. Look to the thunderings and lightnings of Mount Sinai; gaze at Jesus on the cross of Calvary hanging in unspeakable agony because of the justice of a holy God. The God of the Holy Bible is the True, Living God.

The prayer that God answers is the prayer that is to God the Father, that is on the ground of the atoning blood of God the Son, and that is under the direction and in the power of God the Holy Spirit.

Allow the Craftsman to pick you up and create something beautiful through your life, for His glory. Pray!