Summary: The final message in the series adds an important element to being the kind of church Jesus had in mind. Intercession.
It is finished! Well Almost! It will be finished in about 30 minutes.
If I may be so bold as to say, I have seen a change within PFC over the past few weeks and I like it! I can see that you desire and are becoming the kind of church that Jesus had in mind, but please remember that when we finish with the series today, you will need to continue to be a worshipping church, an evangelizing church, a learning church and a loving church.
This doesn’t end when the series ends, it must continue until Jesus returns for His church.
Today I am going to add an important ingredient to the well.
It begins with the letter I. I WELL.
I would have used prayer, but it just didn’t sound as good.
Intercession is prayer and if you will remember last week’s message, prayer is one of the ways we can worship God.
Is it important for a Christian to have a prayer life?
Is it important for us to have oxygen? Having a prayer life is of the utmost importance.
Without prayer God cannot get to know us and we cannot get to know God.
We need prayer in our lives.
Open my eyes so I can see Your truth.
Open my ears so I can hear Your voice.
Open my minds so I can understand your Word.
And, open my heart so I may receive all that You would have me receive.
In the Old Testament book of 2 Chronicles we see an awesome Scripture that gives us a glimpse God’s kingdom principle of prayer.
11 When Solomon had finished the temple of the LORD and the royal palace, and had succeeded in carrying out all he had in mind to do in the temple of the LORD and in his own palace, 12 the LORD appeared to him at night and said:
"I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for myself as a temple for sacrifices.
13 "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, 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. 15 Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place. 16 I have chosen and consecrated this temple so that my Name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there. 2 Chronicles 7:11-16
Three bad things that could happen to the people of Israel in those times were drought, locusts, and plagues. God mentioned all three when He spoke to Solomon.
The reason they were so bad was because when they happened no one could do anything about them.
God shows us an upside down principle that can make a difference in life no matter what the circumstance.
He said, that we need to humble ourselves, call on God, seek His face, turn from evil and then He will do the impossible. He will do the supernatural. He will heal, provide, strengthen, and deliver.
In God’s upside down principles, when things are at their worst and people are obedient to Him and do what He says, God steps in and goes to work.
It is a kingdom principle that has been proven time and time again. When people pray God listens.
The first century church knew the power of prayer. In the book of Acts we see a time in which God intervened in a desperate situation through the power of prayer.
Let me set this up for you.
Herod Agrippa, who was the third Herod since the birth of Christ was actively persecuting the church. He had already had James the brother of John killed and had the Apostle Peter in prison awaiting trial.
Herod Agrippa was a typical politician in the most negative sense of the word. He wanted to be popular and he wanted to be powerful but he did not care about the people he represented. The only thing Herod Agrippa wanted was to be in charge. So he did whatever he needed to do to stay in charge and it did not matter if it was right or wrong.
James was killed and Peter was in jail for the same reason.
They had been preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Herod took special care in making sure that the Apostle Peter was closely guarded. He did not want Peter to escape. He did not want the same thing that happened to his father’s prisoner to happen to him.