Summary: Ten Nation-Changing ways to pray.
Series: “A CHURCH TO CHANGE THE WORLD”
TEN NATION-CHANGING WAYS TO PRAY
Last week I told you we need great faith if our church is going to change the world. I came to the conclusion at the end of my sermon, “We will have greater faith to change the world when we have a greater vision of God.”
I still believe that one church can change the world and can be done by a spiritual movement of God through the people. To use the current analogy, we can change the world by the “bubble-up” influence from the people, rather than the “trickle-down” influence from above. Douglas MacArthur agreed with this approach.
“History fails to record a single precedence in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economical times. There has been either a spiritual awakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster” – Douglas MacArthur
Today, I am going to give you ten nation-changing ways to pray. When we pray these ten ways, our prayers will be answered.
B. FIVE NATION-CHANGING THINGS TO ASK—PLUS ONE
Last week I gave you five great prayer requests to change our nation, but as I have prayed over this list during the week, I want to add a sixth one. Let me quickly give you the first five requests:
1. Outlaw abortion in America.
2. Ask God to give us all the money needed to go to the Mountain.
3. Ask God to give us 50,000 students at Liberty University.
4. Ask God to give us a telecast to touch the world.
5. Ask God to help us plant 5,000 churches in my lifetime through our students.
NOW I ADD A 6TH REQUEST –
6. Send an infectious revival to Thomas Road Baptist Church that will touch the world.
We want God to pour out His spirit at Thomas Road Baptist Church that will spread to other churches across America. We want God to pour out His spirit on Liberty University that will spread to other colleges and seminaries. Remember, I have defined revival as, “The presence of God among His people.” This definition is found in the verses, “I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh” (Joel 2:28) and “When the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19).
C. TEN NATION-CHANGING WAYS TO PRAY
1. Pray decisively. We’ve got to pray and tell God exactly what we want. When the Early Church was threatened, they went to a prayer meeting to ask, “Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, Lord, behold their threatening; and grant thy servants with all boldness that we may speak thy word” (Acts 4:29).
Did God ever answer this prayer? They went straight to the opposition to preach. Stephen died because of his boldness. Peter was thrown in prison and Paul was stoned.
There is some tension between praying once, and praying continually. Sometimes as a small kid I would ask boldly for something once, and my parents gave it to me. I knew I was going to get it before I asked. But there is a second way; sometimes when your parents are reluctant, you keep on asking until you get it. You are bold to keep it up. You “pester” them until you get it. You “bug” them or “beg” because you really want it. There’s a place for asking once boldly and for asking continually. But, pray decisively when you ask for the things that God has commanded:
a. For souls to be saved.
b. For the Holy Spirit to convict of sin.
c. For God to open the spiritually blinded eyes.
d. For the Lord of the Harvest to provide more laborers into the harvest.
e. For the Great Commission to be carried out.
What do you think was the attitude of Paul and Silas in jail? They had been arrested, beaten, put in prison, then locked in stocks. The Bible says, “At midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them” (Acts 16:25). I would call this decisive praying.
2. Pray specifically. When you pray, ask God for the specific things that you want. Maybe you don’t get answers to prayer because “ye have not, because ye ask not” (James 4:2). Some of you have never asked for a soul to be saved, you’ve never asked for abortion to be stopped, you’ve never asked for God to reverse the tide of atheism and immorality in media. Let’s pray specifically for the following:
a. Lord, make abortions illegal in America.
b. Lord, reverse the trend toward immorality and free sex among our young people.