Summary: I would like this morning to talk on prayer and it’s importance in your life.


Sunday November 19, 2000

I would like this morning to talk on prayer and it’s importance in your life.

There are many things that are important in your spiritual life but I feel that the most important thing is your prayer life, because your prayer life is what keeps you able to maintain your everyday life.

As we start out this morning we are going to read several scriptures and we will start with the first one being the first hindrance to your prayers being answered!

Let’s turn to, James 4:3

3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

Even when we do ask God for something, we ask in order that we might spend it in a very selfish way.

A selfish purpose in prayer, robs prayer of power.

Very many prayers are selfish.

These may be prayers for things for which it is perfectly proper to ask, for things which is the will of God to give, but the motive of the prayer is entirely wrong, and so the prayer falls powerless to the ground.

The true purpose in prayer is that God may be glorified in the answer.

If we ask any petition merely that we may receive something to use in our own pleasures or in our own gratification in one way or another, we ask amiss and need not expect to receive what we ask.

This explains why many prayers remain unanswered.

For example, many a woman is praying for the conversion of her husband.

That certainly is a most proper thing to ask; but many a woman’s motive in asking for the conversion of he husband is entirely improper, it is selfish.

She desires that her husband may be converted because it would be so much more pleasant for her to have a husband that would get up on Sunday morning and take her to church, and talk to her about church.

Or it is so painful to think that her husband might die and be lost forever.

For some such selfish reason as this she desires the conversion of her husband.

The prayer is purely selfish.

Why should a woman desire the conversion of her husband?

First of all and above all, that God may be glorified; and that furtherance of God’s Kingdom here on earth will be given.

We have to be careful to make sure that our prayers are not in the least bit selfish!

A lot of people pray for a revival.

That certainly is a prayer that is pleasing to God and it is along the line of His will, but many prayers for revivals are purely selfish.

The churches desire revivals in order that the membership may be increased in order that the church may have a position of more power and influence in the community, in order that the church treasury may be filled, in order that a good report may be made at the conference or the association.

When we pray in such a selfish way as that we cannot expect God to answer such prayers.

Why then you may ask or how should we pray for a revival?

We need to pray that the glory of God be increased in our prayers and that the people of our church will be blessed spiritually and that we may all go out into the world and be seeking to find more and new people to come to church an to be blessed.

We have got to put God first if we ever think for a minute that we will be blessed.

When we pray for a revival or anything else we need to make sure that our motives are not selfish in any way.

The second hindrance to prayer we find in, Isaiah 59:1-2

Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

Likewise in our day it is not the mental hurdles that man has to surmount nor any of his many problems, but his sin separates him from God.

Sin hinders prayer, no matter how you look at it sin in your heart will snap the power line between you and God.

Many a man prays and prays and gets absolutely no answer to his prayer.

Perhaps people are tempted to think that is not the will of God to answer or they may think that the days when God answered prayer, if He ever did, are over.

So the Israelites seem to have thought.

They thought that the Lords hand was shortened that it could not save, and that His ear had become heavy and that it could no longer hear!

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