Summary: Series nspired by a short book by E.W. Price Jr.
Sermon Series: “The A.C.T.S. of Prayer”
(Inspired by a short book by E.W. Price Jr.)
Sermon #2: “C – Confession / T – Thanksgiving”
Series Text: Acts 1:14
Today’s Text: I John 1:8-10
OPENING JOKE: “A Lawyer will listen” A pastor was using a children’s sermon to teach the little boys and girls about prayer. He focused their attention on Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and helped them see how he talked with God when he had a problem. The pastor then noted that when we have a problem we can talk with our parents, grandparents, friends, or the pastor. He sought to transition toward a more direct look at God’s role in prayer by asking, “Is there someone I haven’t named who will listen to our problems?” He got a surprising answer when a little boy shouted, “A lawyer?”
INTRODUCTION: In your bulletin you will notice that the National Day of Prayer is coming on May 5th, and on that Thursday we will open the church from 1 – 4 pm for anyone who would like to come and pray for our church, our nation and our world.
Quote: It was George Washington who said, “It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits and humbly to implore His protection and favor.”
I encourage you all to be a part of this time of committed prayer
Last week we began our series called ‘The ACTS of prayer’
I want to remind you that ACTS is an acrostic, and last week we learned that the letter ‘A’ stands for affirmation of God’s presence and adoration of God’s person.
These two things we learned last week are the first things we should do when we enter into God’s presence:
- Realize that He is with us and that He cares for us
- Remember all of His glorious attributes
Illustration: “Priests Preparing to Go Into God’s Presence” In the Old Testament the priests would prepare themselves before going into God’s presence. They would wash their bodies, put on their priestly robes and offer up a sacrifice before they would enter into God’s holy place.
Quote: Our affirmation and adoration are likened to this act; we are preparing ourselves to meet with God by wrapping ourselves in the robe of His greatness and offering Him a sacrifice of praise.
This week we are going to discuss the next two essentials for drawing close to God in prayer
Illustration: “Who Moved” A man and women were riding in their truck and the women said, “We used to sit right next to each other when we rode, now we sit far apart. The man replied, “I haven’t moved”
Often times when we feel our relationship with God is not as close as we would like it to be we need to be reminded, “He hasn’t moved”
Question: What are the two things that keep us in moved up close with God?
a. In the Old Testament, the prophet Isaiah had a glorious experience of adoration
i. Isaiah chapter six describes him as having seen the Lord in all His holiness and glory, surrounded by His angels, high and lifted up
ii. As he was in complete adoration of God’s holiness, he immediately began praying a prayer of confession
iii. Isaiah 6:5 “So I said: "Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, And I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, The Lord of hosts.”
iv. Upon recognizing how great God is, Isaiah also realized how sinful He was
b. That is the way it will be with most of us if we really move into God’s presence with adoration for Him
i. You see, we are all sinful
ii. Not one of us could stand before the Holy and perfect God of the universe and boast “I am good enough”
iii. And according to the Scriptures, it is our sin that separates us from God
iv. Isaiah 59:2 “But your iniquities have separated you from your God”
v. So if we are to have a fresh, personal relationship with God, these sin barriers must be confessed and removed
c. Let me clarify one doctrinal point
i. When we come to Christ and are born again the penalty of sin (Hell) is removed
ii. But the presence of sin remains
iii. We will not escape the presence of sin until we are in glory
iv. Quote: Until then we fight daily against sin, under the power of the Holy Spirit and confess and repent when we fail – not to get saved over and over again, but to stay in close fellowship with God the Father