Summary: Something powerful happens when we pray. When we pray, we connect our lives to the very same God who spoke this world into being.
Think about how you felt that time when God came through and answered your prayer…
Something powerful happens when we pray. When we pray, we connect our lives to the very same God who spoke this world into being.
The very same God who:
Formed the Swiss Alps…Who carved the Grand canyon…Who planted the rainforest…Placed every single star in it place…
When the church prays, great things begin to happen and I want to share 3 of those things with you.
1. When the Church prays we become united:
The church as describe by Luke in the book of Acts is absolutely a united church.
10 times in Acts, Luke uses a Greek word to describe the early church that basically means that they were all on the same page….they had the same agenda.
There was no running off in different directions, with no one knowing what was going on or what the others doing.
They were of ONE mind…
In Acts chapter 4 Peter and John are released from prison.
Peter and John had the audacity o believe that the resurrected Christ was still powerful enough to heal a 40yr old man who had been crippled since birth…
They healed him in the Name of Jesus and some of the Jewish leaders got HOT under the collar.
They had just worked pretty hard to get rid of this man called Jesus and now here peter and John use this Name to heal a a cripple man.
It is kind of obvious that they didn’t really know what to do with these two renegades.
They wanted to kill them but were afraid of what might happen, so they just threatened Peter and John and told them not to speak that Name again…or it might get worse.
What would you do if you were in their shoes?
Think about it…you’re standing in front of the same bunch that put Jesus to death and now they are threatening you…
LOOK at verse 19,20 “”
Did you catch how Peter and John trapped the Sanhedrin?
If the Sanhedrin said that it was right to obey God then Peter and John were free to continue.
If they said “NO you must stop speaking” Peter and John would be guilty of rebellion against God.
So Peter and John did exactly what most would do if they didn’t know how to answer…ignored the question.
That’s the background…now how does prayer unite the church?
LOOK at vs. 23,24...Peter and John made a beeline straight to the church, after being released…WHY?
What did the church do? PRAYED
Let’s look at the prayer and notice what they did not pray…For vengeance…to be hidden…for something bad to happen to those who jailed Peter and John…
Their prayer was so united and so powerful that the home they were in began to quiver…v31
That is what I want for Elim Bible…that we are so united in prayer and that our prayer becomes so powerful that the very foundations of this old building begins to shake.
2. When the church prays, we receive divine guidance:
It has never been God’s plan for His people grope around in darkness, trying to feel their way through life and ministry. Jer. 29: 11
God already knows where He is taking us and He is waiting for us to just ask for guidance.
Most do one of two things.
1. Just don’t ask…
2. Wait until we have made royal mess of things before we ask…Then its all about having God just bail us out.
In Acts 6 we see the church seeking some divine guidance, as 1000s are being led to Jesus.
The Disciples are overwhelmed with so much stuff that they can’t devote themselves to prayer and study. [I know the feeling]
There was a need for some to step up and help, so they asked God to give them 7 men, full of the Spirit, who would step up to the plate…God provided…
In chapter 15, the church is over 10 years old and more and more Gentiles are coming in…possibly more Gentiles than Jews.
The Jews had been worshipping God a certain way for 1500 years…they had lots of tradition. Their minds were set on how “Church” was to be.
For 1500 years “Well preacher, we’ve always done it that…”
They needed divine guidance as to how to deal with such a diverse group of people.
They needed to know what was essential and what was just a matter of opinion…
God answered…He will give us guidance if we stop trying to tell Him how it ought to be…
3. When the church prays, God’s Power is released:
In Acts 12, the church was facing some real tough times. Herod had arrested a number of Christians, one was John’s brother James. Herod wasted no time in having him beheaded, scoring some pretty big points with the Jews.