Summary: In 2 Chronicles 7:14 it states, "if my people who are called by my name, will humble themselves, and pray". I we are to experience revival we need to be people of prayer.
PERFORMACE OF THE PEOPLE
2 Chron. 7:14 “If my people, who are called by my name will humble themselves, and pray …”
ILLUS: The Struggle with Prayer
One day a boy was watching a holy man on the banks of a river in India. When the holy man completed his prayer the boy went over and asked him, “Will you teach me to pray?” The holy man studied the boy’s face carefully. Then he gripped the boys head in his hands and plunged it forcefully into the water! The boy struggled frantically, trying to free himself in order to breathe. Finally, the holy man released his hold. When the boy was able to get his breath, he gasped, “What did you do that for?” The holy man said, “I just gave you your first lesson.” “What do you mean?” asked the astonished boy. “Well,” said the holy man, “when you long to pray as much as you longed to breathe when your head was under water, only then will I be able to teach you to pray.” Mark Link, Breakaway
One thing I am realizing is the cost of having Revival!
A. We need to recognize who God really is in our lives.
B. We need to know who we are as God’s People.
C. We need to humbly present ourselves to the work of purity in God.
Prayer is costly. To many times it just becomes routine.
Our failure to thing of prayer as a privilege may be partly due to the fact that we can pray anytime. The door to prayer is open so continuously that we fail to avail ourselves of an opportunity which is always there. Henry Emerson Fosdick, The Meaning of Prayer
I. YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH PRIORITES v. 15
A. You will do what you want. If you don’t, you did not want it bad enough.
B. Israelites were accused of adultery with God. Most vivid picture God gives of His people.
“prostitute themselves” they would give:
1. Their body: made in the image of God
2. Their esteem: value connected to God
3. Their sacrifice: the cost
C. Our prayer is a result of what is important to us!
D. Last week – humble ourselves – come before God with the right estimation/evaluation of who we are.
E. Do we think we are okay? Do we believe our priorities are all right?
Are we satisfied with who we are before God? As a church? As a people?
F. The problem we have is that we compare ourselves with the world instead of the New Testament church.
When we compare ourselves to the world: we are not as bad as they are. Look how perverse they are.
But when we compare ourselves to the NT church: we fall very short or their sacrifice and commitment.
G. What are our priorities? Have we compromised, made treaties with the world to determine what is important in our lives?
If we see the need of our priority to God, it will take on the tone of “not my will, but thine be done.”
II. YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH PEOPLE v. 16
A. We are called to ambassadors for Christ.
Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us 2 Cor 5:20
B. James Dobson teaches that “values are caught, not taught”
What I have been saying lately: We say one thing, yet do another. Which truth do you want the world to believe?
C. God warns us here that we will begin to accept brides for our sons, thus influencing them to worship their gods.
D. What are we doing today to influence our families, co-workers, friends, etc. not to stay true to God?
Our prayers will come from our love and commitment for others.
E. If we connect our prayers with the results of peoples lives, would their be more urgency?
1. Could our prayers help effect change in a marriage?
2. Could our prayers help effect change in their health?
3. Could our prayers bring about the openness for salvation?
4. Could our prayers change our feelings toward others?
F. Do we lack urgency and intensity in our prayers?
Do we pray, “I have prayed for a week and nothing has happened. I quit!”
One day Jesus told his disciples a story to illustrate their need for constant prayer and to show them that they must never give up. Luke 18:1
pray without ceasing, 1 Thess 5:17
III. THEIR RELATIONSHIP WITH PRAISE
A. God alone is worthy of our praise! “make not gods for yourselves”
B. Latin word “praise” = “value or price” “to proclaim His merit or worth”
C. Our prayers must come out of our praise!
Think about our prayer for revival:
1. We want His kingdom.