The Purpose of Prayer II Acts 4 31 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
On Wednesday, June 5, 2013, we taught on the purpose of prayer. We didn’t finish the lesson, so tonight we will continue to study the purpose of prayer by examining the scriptures to see why we should pray. Through prayer we obtain:
Filling with the Holy Spirit – Acts 4:31 – in spite of the fact that these men had already been baptized by the Spirit into the body of Christ, they needed to be filled with the Spirit. Interestingly, it is not written in scripture that anyone ever prayed to be filled with the Spirit but the Spirit certainly filled the men in our text when they prayed. God intends for us to be filled with the Spirit [Eph 5:18]. Perhaps we should pray more earnestly and sufficiently until the Lord, during our time in prayer, fills us with his Spirit.
Protection – Eph 6:18 – prayer is a vital piece in the whole armor of God. It appears that prayer strengthens us in spiritual battle even though we are not praying specifically against a certain attack or over a specific spiritual problem. In other words, praying to the Lord is in itself a spiritual weapon that allows us to “withstand in the evil day,” [Eph 6:13]. Sometimes when we pray during a specific battle, we actually end up magnifying the problem and making it bigger than it was at the beginning. So, “praying always” is a better weapon than just praying in urgency when a particular battle arises. Though you will definitely pray in the battle, you won’t be magnifying the temptation in your mind.
Fruit – Jn 15:16 – prayer is integrally connected with bringing forth fruit for the Lord and having that fruit remain. There are many things for which we can pray as it concerns bringing forth fruit. We can pray for: divine appointments whereby we meet a lost person at precisely the time when we can help him come to Christ [Acts 8:26-40], wisdom to say exactly what the Lord wants us to say [Jas 1:5], understanding to see a person’s need and communicate scripture to them in such a way that they “get it,” [Prov 10:11, 13], compassion [Lk 10:33], strength, joy, laborers [Matt 9:38], and so forth.
Conclusion: Evidently, much of our deficiency in power, spiritual warfare and reproduction is due to insufficiency in our prayer lives! Let us determine that we will follow the Lord’s instructions to “pray without ceasing.”