Summary: 1. The Time Has Come (for Jesus) to Pray 2. The Time Has Come (for us) to Pray

September 24, 2003

Title: The Time Has Come to Pray

Text: John 17:1


1. A year ago last summer, we had small groups meeting in different locations.

A. My small group met here in the Fellowship Hall

and we did an intensive study of the Lord’s Prayer

found in Matthew 6, right in the middle of the Sermon on the Mount.

It was a very interesting and informative study.

one of the things that we pointed out...

it really isn’t the Lord’s Prayer...

It is the Disciple’s Prayer.

It is the prayer that Jesus gave as an example to the Disciples...

when the disciples asked, in Luke 11, "Lord, Teach us to pray"

B. And now that we are doing a Prayer Meeting for our Break Out Group...

And I thought it would be appropriate for us to study the REAL Lord’s Prayer

This is not the prayer that Jesus gave His disciples to pray...

this is the prayer that Jesus Himself prayed to His Father.

It is found in John chapter 17.

It is sometimes referred to as "the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus"

It is the longest prayer that we have on record that Jesus made.

It came at a very crucial time in the ministry of Jesus.

C. Those early disciples were able to have a window into the heart of Jesus

as they saw and heard Him speak to His Father.

And I would like for us to join those early disciples by looking on...

and listening to Jesus as He prays.

As we do, I’m sure it will have a profound impact on you in many ways.

2. Ann Graham Lotz, in her book, "My Heart’s Cry", has a chapter covering part of this prayer. (pp. 211-230)

A. In it, she refers to one of her favorite stories writen by Frances Hogston Burnett called, "The Littlest Princess" about a girl named Sara Crewe. I’d like to share it with you. "As the story unfolds...(from page 211 of "My Heart’s Cry")

B. In the "real" Lord’s Prayer, Jesus is turning to His Father just before He is arrested...

just before His is to face such brutality..

and ultimately to lay down His life on our behalf...

and here, just moments before those horrific events...

Jesus turns to His Father in Prayer...

C. And in a sense, we are on the outside, looking in...

And if we will give ourselves the opportunity...

we, just like Sara, will be strangely moved...

and strangely warmed...

by what we see unfolding before our very eyes and ears.

Read Text: John 17:1a

1. Jesus said, "The Time has come"!

A. And using the words of Jesus, I’ve entitled this series, "The Time Has Come... to Pray"

Someone wrote a poem that I’d like to share with you. I don’t know who wrote it, so I am unable to credit a source:

Have you ever had anyone come to you and say, "Tell do you know when it is time to pray?"

I mean our stomachs growl when it is time to eat.

Our eyes start closing when it is time to sleep.

When our feelings get hurt, it is time for tears,

With a new birth it is time to care.

People will often tell us, quite so,

When it is time to come, or stay, or go.

But how do you know when it is time to pray?

Does an alarm go off next to your bed?

Or is there a clanging inside your head?

Do your eyes start blinking, a horn start blowing?

Or do you listen for a rooster crowing?

Just what is your way of knowing when it is time to pray?

With me...

I find it is time to pray

At the beginning and ending of each day.

And when I am sick and feeling bad,

Or scared, or lonely, or lost, or sad.

When the bills blow in like sand

I seek a touch of the Master’s hand.

When I need patience, hope and peace

And an abiding love that will not cease.

When I am thankful for all there is

That now is mine, and yet is His.

Gladness, sadness, joy and grief

We share in prayer. And it is my belief

That whenever my heart has something to say

That is how I know when it’s time to pray.

B. Jesus was at a crucial point in His ministry...

just before He was to suffer and die for all mankind...

instead of curling up in a ball and saying, "why me?"

instead of running away...

instead of telling God to forget the whole mess..."I’m not going to do it"

Jesus turned to God and prayed.

C. This is not all that unusual...

Jesus often found time to pray.

Jesus prayed in the mornings...

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