Summary: How can we pray with power? 1. We must take action by asking. 2. We must expand our expectations. 3. We must lift up our prayers in the Lord's name. 4. We must count on the Lord's commitments.
How to Pray with Power
The Gospel of John
John 14:12-14 (Read vs. 1-14)
Sermon by Rick Crandall
Grayson Baptist Church - August 9, 2017
(Revised January 28, 2020)
*Here in the last few hours before the cross, Jesus spoke to His disciples about the most important things, and one of those things was prayer. In vs. 13-14 the Lord made amazing promises to answer prayer. How do these promises apply to us today? Let's look into God's Word and see. We'll begin by reading John 14:1-14.
*Remember when you were little, if you really wanted something, you'd ask for a promise. "Promise me you'll get me that toy." "Promise me you won't get mad, if I tell you what I did." Did you ever say things like that?
*People like promises. And here in vs. 12, we see one of the most amazing promises in the whole Bible. Here Jesus said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father."
*This promise is so amazing and so big in scope that we might pass it by without stopping to consider the impact of its truth. Again, Jesus said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father."
*This is the Lord's promise. Now the question is: Are we doing those greater works Jesus talked about in vs. 12? If not, then either Jesus wasn't telling the truth, or we need to change our experience. But Jesus always tells the truth. In fact, John 14:6 tells us that Jesus IS the truth. He is 100 percent honest 100 percent of the time, so we need to change our experience. But how can we do that?
*The answer is in vs. 13-14, where the Lord made some powerful promises about prayer. In these verses, Jesus said, "Whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it."
*The promise of great works in vs. 12 relies on the prayers in vs. 13-14. And these verses show us how to pray with power.
1. FIRST: WE MUST TAKE ACTION BY ASKING
*Again in vs. 13-14, Jesus said, "Whatever you ASK in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ASK anything in My name, I will do it."
*Notice that God wants us to ask Him for things in prayer. There can be no doubt about this truth, and we see the same truth in many other Scriptures. When Jesus teaches us to pray, He teaches us to ask.
*In Matthew 6:9-13, Jesus used the Lord's Prayer to teach His disciples how to pray. Listen for all the asking in this prayer. Jesus said:
9. "In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
10. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
11. Give us this day our daily bread.
12. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen."
*There is a whole lot of asking in the Lord's Prayer, but also listen to the Lord in Matthew 7:7-11. There, Jesus said:
7. "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
8. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
9. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?
10. Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11. If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!"
*When Jesus teaches us to pray, He teaches us to ask, so we don't have to feel guilty about asking. God wants us to ask. Of course, He also wants us to offer up prayers of praise, thanksgiving and confession. But God wants us to ask! That's why the Bible is filled with God's great promises to answer the prayers of His people.
*For another example, in Philippians 4:6-7 Paul tells Christians to "be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."