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2010.01.24 (09:46:27)
Sermon Date:  Jan 17, 2010 
Speaker Name:  Rev. Billy Chung 
Scripture:  Ephesians 6:18 
Passage:   
Ephesians 6:18 - Keep breathing (praying).

What animal can go the longest without breathing?

            Whale – 2 hours

Saltwater crocodile  - 3 hours

Scorpions

have breathing tubes on the side of their body. These tubes can be closed and since they dont have lungs of any kind they can hold their breath for up to 3 weeks!   Humans need to breath continually. I think God designed our bodies that way as a reminder that we need to pray continually.

 

Praying is like breathing.

            There are only 2 choices:   either                  

a.      We pray and get stronger and more joyful  OR

b.      We don’t pray and get weaker, discouraged, and defeated.

There is no third alternative.

     A victorious life over temptation, discouragement, this sinful world, and Satan involves a life committed to prayer.

 

God has so much more for us than we are used to or can imagine.

        Unconquerable joy is available to us.

       The power that raised Jesus from the dead and that parted the Red sea is available to us.

       The courage that David had when facing Goliath is available.

      The faithfulness and purity that Joseph had is available to us.

      The wisdom that Solomon had is available to us.

  

For several weeks, I’ve talked about spiritual armor. I don’t know if you’ve realized this but spiritual armor involves the right attitudes about heaven, our identity as God’s children and as soldiers, attitudes about hell and Satan, the right attitudes about the gospel.

However, just having the right attitude is not enough.  We must also have God’s power and God’s power is a result of prayer.

Suppose you trained for the marathon for 1 year but on the day of the race, you stopped breathing, you would not be able to run.

 

Prayer leads to power.

No prayer, no power.

No power, no victory over ourselves

No power, no victory over temptation.

No victory over temptation, limited or no positive influence.

 

Pastor Jim Cymbala – “God is attracted to weakness. He can't resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him. Our weakness, in fact, makes room for his power.”

 

When he returned to church, he told the church,    From this day on, the prayer meeting will be the barometer of our church. What happens on Tuesday night will be the gauge by which we will judge success or failure because that will be the measure by which God blesses us.

If we call upon the Lord, he has promised in his Word to answer, to bring the unsaved to himself, to pour out his Spirit among us. If we don’t call upon the Lord, He has promised nothing-nothing at all. It’s as simple as that. No matter what I preach or what we claim to believe in our heads, the future will depend upon our times of prayer.

 

God says to us, “Pray, because I have all kinds of things for you; and when you ask, you will receive. I have all this grace, and you live with scarcity………. Everything you need, I have.”

 Indicator of prayer

            Martyn Lloyd Jones says, "'Our ultimate position as Christians is tested by the character of our prayer life." You may have a lot of knowledge, you may be a seminary student or a seminary graduate or a, a minister a pastor, a missionary, a Bible teacher but your prayer life will be a monitor on how really deep your knowledge of God and your relationship to Him is.

 

"You can tell how popular a church is by who comes on Sunday morning.

"But you can tell how popular Jesus is by who comes to the prayer meeting."

 

Frequency of prayer, verse 18,

"Praying always."

       How is that possible?

                  It is simply living our lives with an awareness of God.

 

Kinds of prayer

a.      Private and Public

b.      Silent and spoken

c.       Planned prayer and spontaneous prayer

d.      Emergency prayer and Preventative prayer

e.       Quiet prayers and loud prayers

f.       Morning prayers and evening prayers

g.      Individual prayer and group prayer

h.      Prayer for yourself  AND prayer for others

i.        Conversational prayer AND FOCUSED prayer

j.        ACCTS

   Adoration, Confession, Casting burdens, Thanksgiving, Supplication

God has not changed. He is still superior to anything the enemy can throw against us. No personal or church situation is too hopeless for the all-sufficient power of the Holy Spirit. God will be no more eager to act tomorrow than He is right now. He is waiting for us to take his promises seriously and go boldly to the throne of grace. He wants us to meet the enemy at the very point of attack, standing against him in the name of Christ. When we do so, God will back us up with all the resources of heaven.

 
Manner of prayer – How?

we are to pray in the Spirit

               Praying in the Spirit is the same as praying in the name of Christ, it is praying in consistency with who He is and what His will is. as you are constantly communing in His presence the Spirit of God will govern your thoughts so that your prayers will be in harmony with the Spirit of God. praying in the Spirit is simply lining up your own prayer consistent with the mind and the will of the Spirit.

 

    Pastor prayed to golf in the 70’s but wound up scoring over 100.

Watchfully – being aware of how to pray for others

Expectantly – believing God will answer

Persuasively – explaining why God should answer the prayer

Biblically - using Bible verses in our prayers

 

In prayer oh God I see myself as nothing, I find my heart going after you with passion to live with Thee. Blessed be the strong winds (desires) of the Holy Spirit that push me to you. In prayer all things here below vanish and nothing seems important as holiness of heart and the salvation of others. In prayer all my worldly cares and fears and anxieties disappear and are as little in significance as a puff of wind. In prayer I can place all my concerns in your hands and give up my desires and will. In prayer I can pray for my friends, family, ministers, sinners, the church, the spread of the gospel all over the world.  And so Father, please help me to always pray.

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