Aired week of June 12 - 18, 2011
“Prayer”

        Greetings in the name of Jesus! Hi, I'm Pastor Don Guthrie and I want to thank you for joining me today as
we look into God’s Holy Word to learn how we can become more faithful followers of Christ, and a better
witnesses to the world.

       Pray with me. Lord, I come before you this day, in the name of Jesus. I ask that you anoint me with your
Holy Spirit and that you speak through me.Open our heart and ears to receive your word and to be touched by
your Spirit. AMEN

Ephesians 6:12-18
12. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers,
         against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high
          places.
13. Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in
         the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
14. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of
         righteousness;
15. And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
16. Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery
         darts of the wicked.
17. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
18. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto
         with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

 
        Today, I want to speak to about prayer. Prayer is an essential part of a Christian’s armor, and one of the
main weapons we have been given to wage war against Satan and his followers.

  
        Whether you want to admit it or not, we are at war. We are at war, against principalities, against powers,
against rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual wickedness in high places. In order to do battle
against these powers, we must have the armor in place, armor which is given to us by Almighty God.

 
        There are six pieces of armor, the Belt of Truth, the Breastplate of Righteousness, the Shoes of Peace,
the Shield of Faith and the Helmet of Salvation. With this armor in place we can than be a prayer warrior seeking
the help and power of God to fight our battles for us.  

Ephesians 6:18 states
18. Pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto
         with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

  
        Prayer is direct communication with God. It is a conversation with the Almighty who created the heavens
and the earth. It is a direct line to heaven right to the throne of God. I believe for the most part, prayer is taken
much too lightly, and we do not pray nearly as much as we should. Prayer is a hot-line to God, a hot-line which
is never busy, one that is always open and awaiting our call.

 
        There is no right or wrong way to pray.  Prayer can be offered while on is standing, sitting, kneeling, lying
down, driving, or while doing any number of things. What's important is that we pray, and that we set aside a
special time to communicate with God everyday. One of the ladies at the Church where I pastor has what she
refers to as "her prayer chair." That chair is where she goes to communicate with God. When she is there she is
not to be disturbed. Some folks have a prayer closet, or a special room where they pray. I have heard of others
who have a building where they go to pray. I knew one old pastor, who went out in the field and knelt down
beside a tree stump to pray. Others kneel beside their beds. Again, it really does not matter where you pray,
instead it's important that you do.

Ephesians 6:18 states
18. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto
         with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

        In this passage, Paul said we should pray always, meaning that prayers should be offered often
throughout the day. Personally, I like to begin my day with prayer and never say amen. Instead, I like to keep my
prayer line to God open all day long, then if I hear someone using profanity, I can lift them to God in prayer. If
while listening to or watching the news I see or hear something which disturbs me, I can immediately take my
concerns to God, praying always, with all prayer and supplication to God.

 
        When we do pray, we must allow God the opportunity to speak to us. Prayer is to be a conversation with
God, not a message we send or just a one sided conversation. When you pray, you should spend as much time
waiting in silence allowing God to speak to you as you do speaking to him. If you allow God the opportunity to
speak, he will. He will speaks to you in that still small voice, which is not audible to the ear, but instead is heard
by the heart.

 
        Paul said we are to pray with all prayer and supplication. Supplication is things we take before the Lord,
things we ask for, and things we seek for others.  Supplication is anything asked for in prayer for other people.

 
        Prayer is not only petitioning God for ourselves, prayer is lifting up supplication to God for others. One of
the problems in the Christian Community today is the lack of prayers we petition for others. It's very easy to pray
for ourselves, but a little harder to forget our wants long enough to pray for someone who has a need, but this is
what Paul is teaching us to do, we are to pray with all prayers and supplication, in the spirit, for all saints.

        We are to pray with all prayers and supplication with all perseverance and supplication for others, meaning
we are to Keep on Keeping on in spite of ourselves, humbly ourselves before God as we seek his help for
others.

 
        Imagine how strong the church would be if we would start lifting each other up in prayer. Imagine the
power we would have if there were people praying for us every day. As I said before, we are at war, at war
against evil. Every saint of God is on the front line in that battle. We are battling against Satan, in our own way,
at our own place in our own time. We have been given the armor of God, and God is willing to help if we ask
him, but it sometimes gets very lonely on the front lines fighting so we need the help and support of others in
order to not get discouraged.

 
        When a soldier is in the field, far away from home, he has other soldiers around him, he has weapons he
was trained to use, but he still desires support from home. Nothing makes him happier than receiving a letter or
a box of Mom’s cookies from his loved ones. It ,makes him happy to receive letters from his friends telling him
he's doing the right thing, and praising him. This keeps his moral up and makes him want to continue. Well, the
same holds true for those who are fighting the battle against Satan and the darkness of the world. Realizing that
folks are praying for you, having them tell you they are behind you, knowing you have brothers and sisters in the
Lord watching out for you and covering you with prayer, makes the battle much easier to fight.

 
        The fact is, the prayers that are lifted by others, empower us to continue in the fight. When you lift God’s
people up in prayer and bring them before the altar of God with perseverance they feel it. I know I can. I would
never dream of standing in a pulpit or preaching, if there weren't people praying for me, and the message I was
about to preach. This is where the power for a good sermon comes from, from the prayers and petitions of  
people who are praying for the message and the messenger.

 
        I here to tell you though, Satan don’t like folks, who are fighting him. Furthermore, he don't like anyone to
follow Jesus so he will do anything he can to try and distract you. He will make you sick. He will cause you to
have financial problems. He will cause problems in your marriage and in your family and at your work, He will do
everything he can to hurt you. This is why it’s so important that we pray for one another.

  
        The armor God has given us is our battle gear, but prayers that are offered to God on our behalf is a
force shield of protection, a shield Satan cannot break through.

 
        It’s is time for Christian to start taking prayer seriously. It is time that we put Satan into the place he
belongs and reclaim our home, our church and our community for God.

2 Chronicles 7:14 states
14. If my people, which are called by my name, shall 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.

   
        If you are a true follower of Christ, you have been called by his name. Not only have you been called,
you carry a part of His name. We we are called Christians Christian, meaning we are from Christ. 2 Chronicles 7:
14 tells us what we need to do. First we must humble ourselves before God, then we must pray, and seek the
face of God. Then we need to turn from our wickedness and follow after him. If we do these things, then God will
hear our prayers, forgive our sins and heal our land.

 
        This does not mean we’re our of the water, instead it means that we're on the winning side, and have an
open line of communication to God whenever we desire to talk to him. It also means that we are able to pour out
our prayers and supplication to God for all the Saints, praying for them, and asking God to help them in their
struggle against Satan as verse eighteen states.           

18. Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto
         with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

 
        One thing I didn't touch on in this verse is where Paul says we were to pray in the Spirit. Praying in the
spirit is something that many do not want to touch, and others misunderstand.

  
        First you must realize that God is Spirit. For you or me to approach him we must be in the Spirit. This
does not mean you have to speak in tongues or anything of that sort. Instead, it means that you must allow your
spirit to communicate with God’s spirit in prayer, as a friend to friend.

Hebrews 4:16
16. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy,
 and find grace to help in time of need.

 
        Paul taught us that we are to enter into the throne room of God, through prayer. The only way for us to
enter his throne room is in the spirit, even while we are yet on the earth and in our earthly body. What Paul is
referring to in both instances is getting alone with God, becoming one with him, pouring out yourself to him and
listening to his replies.

         When I pray, I imagine myself going into the throne room of God, and kneeling before him, Other times I
imagine myself going up to my Heavenly Father and sitting on his lap, as I talk to him and tell him my problems. It’
s wonderful to feel God’s arms wrapped around you, and hear his sweet voice say “it’s OK, I'm here for you.”  

 
        Furthermore, you must realize that the kingdom of God is in you, even as it is in me. God is never far from
us. If you've asked Jesus into your heart, the kingdom of God is now in you. There the Holy Spirit dwells, and
even prays for you when you are unable to pray for yourself.

 
        Christians ought to pray for each other. We ought to lift the saints of God, Saints meaning all born again
believers, to God in prayer. We ought to ask God to look over them and protect them from the wiles of Satan. If
you know of specific needs, then you ought top state those needs to God, whether it be financial, physical, or
any other kind of need. We ought to cover them with prayer daily.

   
        We who are God’s Children are in this together, and Satan is not happy. Having others pray for us, and
our praying for them, gives us the strength to make it form one day to the next, and eventually to be ready meet
Jesus when he comes.

 
        Someone once said, there are three things we need to do,

       
Pray

       
Pray again

       
Than Pray some more.

 
        Basically what he was saying is, pray, pray and than pray some more. AMEN     
Don Guthrie
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