Summary: The fourth in a series of four sermons entitled, ‘Prayer as a Second Language’
Slide 1 We are concluding the fourth and final sermon in this series, ‘Prayer as a Second Language’ with a look at the vital prayer of supplication. Now, I ask you what does the word, ‘supplication’ mean? It means to request or plea for something and sometimes that is done on behalf of another person. Intercession is another name, I believe, for supplication.
Slide 2 To help us develop a frame of reference and understanding for this morning, I want to you ask you a question, ‘Who are you thinking about right now?’ Is it a spouse, a relative, a child or grandchild, a friend, a co-worker, someone in this sanctuary? Who are you thinking about right now?
What are you thinking about as it relates to who you are thinking about? Is about their health? Is it about their work situation? Is it about their spiritual life and condition?
In a recent article that he wrote, Incarnate Preaching, Gordon MacDonald listed a set of questions that he believes are asked by adults from age 20 on up to age 70 and beyond and which need to be addressed in preaching and teaching. Here are a few of them with the age segment MacDonald believes is asking them listed alongside them.
Around what will I center my life? (20s)
Why haven’t I resolved all my sin problems? (30s)
Why are some of my peers doing better than me? (40s)
Do I have anything of value to give any longer? (50s)
What does it mean to grow old? (60s)
Does anyone around here know who I once was? (70s)
As I think about these questions, I know that I have asked some of them (and still do) in my prayers over the years. This part of prayer we call supplication is a part that I believe all of us here are the most focused on. I have no doubt that as I am praying each week on your behalf from this pulpit (and throughout the week as well) that you are praying on behalf of others as well as your own personal concerns.
I like how David Mains states this issue of supplication, “How do I get God to pay attention when I say, “Please, Jesus, can you just do these one or two things for me?”
These are important prayers because we believe in a God who does great and marvelous things. We also believe that He cares for us and for the needs and issues that are important to us.
Slide 5 For a moment this morning, I am going to ask you to think of two prayer requests that you would like the Lord to answer and then you are going to have one minute to spend time in prayer for these people or situations. Ready? Begin…
Slide 6 I would like to suggest today that the key part of supplication is ‘agreeing with God in prayer.’
When Jesus, in response to His disciples’ request to teach them to pray, gave them a guideline for prayer, he included this line as we read in Matthew 6:10, “May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done here on earth, just as it is in heaven.”
A businessman named Jacob finds himself in dire trouble. His business has gone bust and he’s in serious financial trouble. He’s so desperate that he decides to ask God for help.