Summary: Sermon on Prayer
Title- The Power of Prayer
Text- John 15:1-8
John 15:1-8 "I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit. 3 "You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 "Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5 "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. 6 "If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. 7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 "My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.
I. The Purpose of Prayer
II. The Parts of Prayer
III. The Priority of Prayer
Please open your Bibles to John 15…
I’m taking a short break from our study in Romans to focus our attention on prayer. This Thursday May 1st is the national day of prayer. Different churches from around Woodland and Davis will be gathering in front of the courthouse at 6:30 Thursday evening to pray together. I want to encourage you to join us.
I want to spend the next two week refocusing our attention back onto the importance of prayer. I think that we can often lose sight of just how important prayer is in our lives. It’s easy to fall out of the habit of praying on a regular basis. All the other pressures of life can sometimes choke out our prayer time.
So today I want to talk a little bit about the importance and power that is found in prayer. I want us to have a reminder of why we need to make time for prayer. And I want us to have a solid understanding of the different kinds of prayer so that we will have a full and rich prayer time with God.
PRAYER’S BEST POSITION
Three ministers were talking about prayer in general and the appropriate and effective positions for prayer. As they were talking, a telephone repairman was working on the phone system in the background.
One minister shared that he felt the key was in the hands. He always held his hands together and pointed them upward as a form of symbolic worship. The second suggested that real prayer was conducted on your knees. The third suggested that they both had it wrong--the only position worth its salt was to pray while stretched out flat on your face.
By this time the phone man couldn’t stay out of the conversation any longer. He interjected, "I found that the most powerful prayer I ever made was while I was dangling upside down by my heels from a power pole, suspended forty feet above the ground."
Our position in prayer isn’t as important as our heart as we pray.
I’m going to jump around to different passages, but I want to camp out on this passage from John 15. There are so many great illustrations and exhortations to pray in the Bible. I like this passage because it is a great illustration of our interdependence on Christ. It helps us understand just how completely reliant we are on Him for everything. Follow along as I read the first eight verses in chapter 15…
I want to start off today by talking about the purpose of prayer. Why do we pray? What are some of the benefits of prayer?
1. We pray because it is our lifeline to God.
Jesus tells us we are the branches and He is the vine, only when we are connected to Him can we bear fruit. If we are disconnected to Him we will soon wither and die. We’ll be worthless. Without maintaining a healthy relationship to God through Christ our life we be hallow.
Prayer isn’t just a command, it isn’t just a discipline, prayer is a necessity. It’s as vital to our Christian life as food or water or air is to our physical life. Prayer fills us up. It refreshes our spirit. It teaches us how to lean on God.
2. We pray because it is our means of growth.
Jesus said that apart from me you can do nothing. Neglecting prayer is the same as saying that we can in fact do it on our own. It is like telling God we don’t really need Him. Or we’ll let Him know when we need Him.