May 12, 2024

Encouragement to Pray

Preacher:
Passage: John 14:1-14
Service Type:

Introduction

  • A real encouragement to prayer
  • Re-reading v12-14
  • Do you struggle in prayer?
    • Some might be prayer warriors
  • The majority might struggle in prayer: Examples
    • Life is too much/too hard
    • Will God accept me?
    • Why do I need to pray?
    • Unanswered prayer
  • Example of Song - What various hindrances we meet
    • What hindrance might you meet?
    • But answered prayers encourage us to pray more
    • Though we are weak, prayer is mighty
    • Example of prayer in a Church in Newtown
  • Example of Song - Lord teach us how to pray aright
  • Perhaps prayer is the weakest aspect of many churches in the UK
    • What are our own private lives in prayer like?
    • Example of CH Spurgeon
    • Not just arrow prayers, not just grace, not just before bed or when we wake
    • Do we enjoy being in God's presence?
  • Encouragement to pray
    • Jesus encourages His disciples to pray - on four occasions
  • The word "you" - is in the plural
    • Jesus is speaking to the 11 disciples
    • These are group statements
    • Not just individual but corporate prayer
      • The promise of the Holy Spirit
      • Pentecost
      • Acts 4
    • To join physically together to pray - where possible
  • v13-14
    • Repetition - examples
      • Jesus wants the disciples to take note of this important point
    • Also John 15:7, 16; 16:23-24
    • Jesus encourages His apostles many times - 'ask in My name'
  • Let us listen to the Lord Jesus and ask in His name
    • We so quickly forget sermons
    • The disciples had forgotten the importance of prayer - example
    • We must not forget the instruction of the Lord
  • Not to pray selfishly

The Extent of the Promise

  • Greater Works
  • v12
    • Is this confined to the apostles?
    • Example of the Acts of the Apostles
    • No one can do a greater miracle than Jesus Christ
  • Not just confined to physical miracles
    • Miracles of bodily healing are temporary - people still die
    • Spiritual miracles - are greater
  • Spiritual miracles (of salvation)
    • Not just the Jews but the Gentiles also
    • Relatively few were saved during Jesus' ministry - 3'000 were saved at Pentecost
    • A resurrection body
  • Example of George Muller
    • Yet the greater miracle is for their salvation
  • v12-13
    • We are asked to consider and ask big things for the kingdom of God
    • Examples

The Basis of the Promise

  • To pray in Jesus Name
    • Not formulaic 'in Jesus' name'
    • It is not found in Scripture
  • To come to God through Jesus Christ the Mediator
    • Recognising that we have no right to come to God
    • Recognising that we have every right to come through Jesus
      • Heb 10:22
      • Jesus' blood has washed us clean
    • We thank God for Jesus sacrifice on the cross
  • To pray a prayer that Jesus would confirm / counter-sign
    • Examples
  • These directions are about asking
    • Jesus prayer' was (Our Father) bracketed in praise
    • Paul's prayers are full of thanksgiving
    • We ask with a spirit of thanksgiving - Phil 4:6-7
    • Prayer for judgment and salvation - in God's will
    • Example
  • If it brings glory to the Son
    • God hears our prayers
    • God answers prayers
    • Example
    • Example of Jane
  • In God's will

Closing Remarks

  • 1 John 5:14-15 "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him."
  • God revealed His glory to John - even in a place of suffering and isolation on Patmos
  • It may surprise us what God may do