Summary: This sermon show examples of prayer in the Book of Acts and the positive results of the prayer.
9 BENEFITS OF PRAYER
By : Ng Wah Lok
Text : Acts 2:42
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer”.
Results of Acts 2:42
a) Miracles, signs and wonders took place – v 43
b) Needs were met – V44
c) Souls were saved - V47
Today, we will look at another important activity in the early church – PRAYER. Let us look at the 9 benefits of prayer as seen in the book of Acts.
1. PRAYER RELEASES THE HOLY SPIRIT
Acts 1:14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
The verse occurs before Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was poured down. By Act 2:1, we see that the Holy Spirit was poured down at Pentecost and many were baptized with the Holy Spirit. We often look at the glorious event but do not realize that it was preceded with much prayer. All revivals are birthed in prayer.
Many other scriptures show the Holy Spirit poured down as a result of prayer.
Acts 4:31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
Acts 8:15-17 When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
2. PRAYER RELEASES WORKERS FOR THE MINISTRY
Acts 1:24-26 Then they prayed, "Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which of these two you have chosen 25 to take over this apostolic ministry, which Judas left to go where he belongs." 26 Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles.
Due to Judas’ all, one more apostle was needed. Finally after much prayer, Matias was chosen as the apostle. Prayer releases workers.
While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." 3 So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.
Barnabas and Saul were released after prayer.
Acts 14:23-24 Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust.
Leaders must only be released after much prayer.
Some people make things happen. Some people see things happen. Some are still asking “What happened ?
3. PRAYER RELEASES BOLDNESS/POWER IN OUR LIVES
Acts 4:31-33 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. 32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.
Are you ready to overcome the devil ? You need the power of God in your lives.
Prepare and prevent is better than repair and repent
4. PRAYER BRINGS FOCUS TO OUR LIVES
Acts 6:4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word."
The background of this scripture was that there were a lot of needs in the church and the apostles had to meet that need. Instead of meeting the need directly and skipping prayer, they prayed and God gave direction on how to meet the needs. You cannot sacrifice your prayer time to meet needs.
Prayer helps us to focus on God and as a result, we will be better able to meet the needs around us.
If we fail to plan, we are planning to fail.
If we fail to pray, we are destined to fail
5. PRAYER RELEASES GROWTH
Acts 6:6-7 They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.
The rapid growth in the early church was result of prayer.
There are 4 steps to accomplishments. Plan Purposefully. Prepare prayerfully. Proceed positively. Pursue persistently
6. PRAYER RELEASES GOOD WORKS
Acts 10:1-4 At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion in what was known as the Italian Regiment. 2 He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. 3 One day at about three in the afternoon he had a vision. He distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, "Cornelius!" 4 Cornelius stared at him in fear. "What is it, Lord?" he asked. The angel answered, "Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God.