Saturday, October 20, 2007

On Being a "House of Prayer": Part 2

Last Wednesday night at Glory of Christ Baptist Church we continued our discussion of why we ought to strive to be a house of prayer for all peoples. I began by reminded those gathered of the first reason: God's house is a house of prayer for all people, and we are that house (see "On Being a 'House of Prayer': Part 1" below). Then I led to consider John 15:1-11:

"1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. 9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full."

The second reason we ought to strive to be a house of prayer for all peoples is because, as a church, we are utterly dependent upon God. I have often spoken of prayer as a barometer by which are conscious dependence upon God is measured. In actual terms we are 100% dependent upon him for every thing. But one of the key questions of life is this: Are we living in such a way that acknowledges our actual dependence upon God?

The amount of time a person spends in prayer, in communing with God in all circumstances of life, is the answer to this question.

Thus, we want to be a church that is so deeply conscious of our dependence upon God that we strive for the biblical goal of praying without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

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