Sermons

Summary: WE need to understand the nature of prayer if we are going to engage in prayer!

  Study Tools

INTRODUCTION

• VIDEO CLIP

• SLIDE #1

• A comparison of the following book titles on the subject of prayer points up some of the tensions of the subject:

• Where Is the Lord of Elijah? (Cox) vs. You Never Walk Alone (Mesner)

• How Can God Answer Prayer? (Biederwolf) vs. Getting Things from God (Blanchard)

• Let’s Pray Together (Fromer) vs. The Hidden Life of Prayer (McIntyre)

• Saying Better Prayers (Karney) vs. Prayer Without Pretending (Townsend)

• Teach Yourself to Pray (Winward) vs. The Holy Spirit—Our Teacher in Prayer (Walton)

• Five Laws That Govern Prayer (Gordon) vs. Beyond the Natural Order (Best)

• . . . and lastly, Taking Hold of God (Zwemer) vs. Prayer: Conversing With God (Rinker)

• Green, M. P. (Ed.). (1989). Illustrations for Biblical Preaching: Over 1500 sermon illustrations arranged by topic and indexed exhaustively (Revised edition of: The expositor’s illustration file). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

• Prayer is something that many Christians do not fully grasp the meaning and importance of.

• How often do we only pray when we need or want something from God? Do we use prayer as an emergency call or a cold call to God?

• Jonah had been rebellious to God’s calling and he finds himself in DEEP trouble. Look at what he does.

• SLIDE #2

Jonah 2:7 (CSB) As my life was fading away, I remembered the Lord, and my prayer came to you, to your holy temple.

• A Pew Research Center survey conducted in 2014 found that 45% of Americans – and a majority of Christians (55%) – say they rely a lot on prayer and personal religious reflection when making major life decisions. The same survey found that 63% of Christians in the U.S. say praying regularly is an essential part of their Christian identity. (http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/05/04/5-facts-about-prayer/)

• This research is int eresting to me. 55% of Christians, only 10% more than those who are not Christians say they rely a lot on prayer.

• Only 65% of Christians in the U.S. say praying regularly is an essential part of their Christian identity.

• In the New Testament, Jesus both taught and displayed the importance of prayer. For some reason, according to Pew Research, many Christians do not seem to get it.

• Today we are going to look at the third of our 7 Hebrew words every Christian should know, the word Tefillah (TU FEE LAH’), ONE OF THE WORDS WE TRANSLATE PRAYER.

• We talk about prayer, we have prayer chains, but how do we utilize prayer in our life?

• Today we will dissect the definition of the word TEFILLAH. As we examine this word we will gain a deeper understanding of what it means to pray.

• SLIDE #3

SERMON

????????? I. Tefillah centers on communication.

• If you were to open a lexicon (which is a book containing an alphabetical arrangement of the words in a language and their definitions) and look up the meaning of the word TEFILLAH, part of the definition states, “THE ACT OF COMMUNICATING”

• When we go back to the passage in Jonah, TEFILLAH is the word translated PRAYER.

• SLIDE #4

Jonah 2:7 (CSB) As my life was fading away, I remembered the Lord, and my prayer came to you, to your holy temple.


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