Summary: One thing that you can notice as you look over his books is the number of prayers that Paul prays for his brothers and sisters in Christ. Several times he lets them know that he prays for them and many times he tells them exactly how he prays for them, w
This evening I would like for you to turn with me to 2 Thess. 1:11-12. I enjoy reading the letters of Paul to the churches that he had such a passion for. And one thing that you can notice as you look over those books is the number of prayers that Paul prays for his brothers and sisters in Christ. Several times he lets them know that he prays for them and many times he tells them exactly how he prays for them, what exactly it is that he’s praying God will do in their lives. Our text tonight is one of those passages.
2 Thess. 1:11-12… Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power: That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I want us to look together at this prayer that Paul prayed for the Thessalonican church. I really feel as though it is a prayer that he would have prayed for us as well had he written this letter to Clinton First Wesleyan. Let’s see what it has to say to us tonight. There are three things that Paul prayed for.
I. That God’s Power Might Strengthen Us
First of all, we find in Paul’s prayer that he desired that God’s power might strengthen us. Power is something that seems to impress us, isn’t it? Especially us men. We like power. We’re impressed by power. We like to see the power in a quarterbacks arm, unless, of course, we’re talking about Peyton Manning.
Every once in a while I’ll sit down and watch a little bit of the “World’s strongest man” competition. Here these guys are pulling fire trucks, and flipping huge tires end over end to a finish line, and lifting these huge loads above their heads. And I’m thinking, “I wonder why I wasn’t invited to compete with those guys.” There is some amazing power packed in those guys’ bodies.
We’re impressed by the power of a new Firebird or a new Ferrari. 0-60 in 4 seconds or whatever. I heard about one guy that got a new Corvette, and he was taking his friend out for a ride. He was so sure of the power in his car that he taped a $100 bill to the dash board in front of his friend and told him that if he could grab it when they took off from the light, he could have it. Of course, his friend said OK, but when they left the light, the force from the take off pressed him back into his seat so hard that he could not reach that bill. That’s some impressive power. Power impresses us.
Think about airplanes and the power that they have. A 747 can weigh up to 870,000 lbs. and yet it can accelerate fast enough to lift off the ground in less than 11,000 feet and it can travel up to the speed of 563 mph. Is that not impressive power?
And what about the power of the President of the United States of America. He governs the greatest nation on the face of the earth. He holds the power of executive decision. He is the Commander in Chief of the greatest military force in the world. He has the greatest influence of any single man in the world. No other one person holds the power that is in his hands. Power is impressive.
And yet, all of the power in all the engines of the world and in all the strong men of the world and in all the political and military leaders of the world is so small in comparison to the power of our God. Jeremiah 32:17 tells us that God has made the heaven and the earth by His great power, and there is nothing too hard for God. David praises the Lord in 1 Chronicles 29:11. He says, Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all. Jesus said in Matthew 28:18… All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Nothing can compare to the power of our God. He alone had the power to create the universe. He alone had the power to open up the Red Sea. He alone had the power to rip down the walls of Jericho. He alone had the power to help a young boy defeat a giant. He alone had the power to keep three young men from even smelling like smoke when they were thrown in a fiery furnace. He alone had the power to shut the mouths of hungry lions in order to protect a faithful servant. He alone had the power to turn water into wine. He alone had the power to heal a leper. He alone had the power to pay the price for our sins. He alone had the power to raise up from the dead. Nothing can compare to the power of our God.