Summary: As believers we have the responsibility to prayer for our nation, to respect and honor those in authority & not to be critical to them. instead we should pray for them.
TOPIC: PRAYER FOR THE NATION
Text: 1 Timothy 2:1-4
“1 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone-- 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.”
“THE CHURCH WILL ALWAYS GET THE GOVERNMENT SHE DESERVES”. The above saying is very true. When a nation sins, God brings a judgment from within or without. This is true when we read the story of Israel who repeatedly sins against God. God can bring bad governments to power or allow the nation to be conquered by an adversary. But when they pray as nation for their nation we can see how God intervene. When Christians pray, the grace and mercy of God are over the nation, that is why We Pray for the Nation. 1 Timothy 2:1-4 (read). Why do we need to pray for our nation?
1. Because it was Commanded (order, charge, instruct) by the Lord
1 Timothy 2:1-2a, “1 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone-- 2 for kings and all those in authority...”
We are commanded first of all to pray for:
a) All men – everyone
b) Kings – President
c) All in authority – All authority
“PRAYER FOR THE NATION IS NOT AN OPTION, IT IS A COMMAND”.
“SOME PEOPLE PRAY ONLY WHEN THEY ARE IN CRISIS. THAT IS THE REASON WHY THEY ARE IN CRISIS”. (ILL. PPT. Slide) But many times we see prayer as spare tire only. (ILL. PPT. Slide) (ILL. PPT. Slide)
We saw the spirit of violence in many countries now even in our country. In Indonesia, many churches were burned down during the riots. There were also a series of violent killings in American schools. The bombing tragedy in New York is again a serious threat to those who love peace. Yet many take the peace in their nations for granted and fail to pray. Should not the church rise up and bind this spirit of violence? We are commanded to pray for peace in our land that is why Paul urge us to pray for all men, for kings and for all those in authority.
2. Because it Changes (alter, transform) the Hearts of People (also the Nations Atmosphere)
1 Timothy 2:2b, “2 …that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.”
The atmosphere of our nation is different 20 years ago. We can see the changes of people now a) Morals of young people b) Values c) Dressing d) Censorship of Movies & TV e) Materialism f) Easy availability of pornographic materials on the streets and the internet g) Respect of the elderly h) Growth of false religions. i) Rebellious spirit, Etc.
Today, you will find that our children are exposed to things we were never exposed to when we were young. We cannot deny that we are worse off today than 20 years ago. We need to pray for our nation so that God will heal our land. In 2 Chronicle 7:14, “14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (ILL. PPT. Slide) “THE PROBLEM TODAY IS NOT WITH UNANSWERED PRAYER - BUT UNOFFERED PRAYER”
Another is THE HEALING OF OUR ENVIRONMENT: the neglect and rape of the environment is often a good indicator of the sins of the nation. The greed of humanity has caused much of the environment to be destroyed. Today, there is excessive deforestation in third world countries. In developed countries, major environmental catastrophes happen due to poor safety standards. Today, we can have massive floods in some parts of the world and severe drought in other parts at the same time. We are on a destructive tail spin because of the massive abuse of the environment. What world will we leave behind for our children? We need to pray so that God will heal the environment.
Another is WHEN WE PRAY GOD’S JUGDEMENT IS DELAYED OR WITH-HELD – Number 16 : 47-48, “46 Then Moses said to Aaron, "Take your censer and put incense in it, along with fire from the altar, and hurry to the assembly to make atonement for them. Wrath has come out from the LORD; the plague has started." 47 So Aaron did as Moses said, and ran into the midst of the assembly. The plague had already started among the people, but Aaron offered the incense and made atonement for them. 48 He stood between the living and the dead, and the plague stopped.” Aaron stood between the dead and the living; so the plague was stopped. The incense speaks of prayer. Because of the sin of Israel, the judgment of God started. The plague broke out and the people were dropping dead. Moses’ quick instruction to Aaron to bring the incense into the congregation stopped the plague.