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Monthly Archives: October 2012

The Resurgence of Worship and Prayer but Not Fasting (Fasting Edition #167)

Our fasting quote of encouragement today is from William Secker. He said: “By fasting, the body learns to obey the soul; by praying the soul learns to command the body.”

Our fasting devotional today is titled “THE RESURGENCE OF WORSHIP AND PRAYER BUT NOT FASTING” from John Piper, author of the bestselling book “A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer”.

There are three elements in Acts 13:1–3—worship, prayer, and fasting. In our day there has been a remarkable resurgence of worship and prayer. Tens of thousands of congregations around the world are experiencing more vibrant, freer, more engaging worship in the last 20 years. And the prayer movements around the world are unprecedented in number and scope. In my own state the Minnesota Prayer Coalition is unprecedented in pulling the body of Christ together to pray for the reviving of Christ’s church and the advance of his kingdom.

But there is not yet a comparable resurgence of the practice of fasting as there has been with worship and prayer. Bill Bright suggested that God may will that all three be in place and that the church be humbled and hungry with fasting before he blesses us as fully as he means to. It is remarkable how neglected this spiritual practice is.

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2012 in Fasting Edition

 

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John Piper said, “Prayer is a war-time walkie-talkie, not a domestic intercom.” (The Prayer Motivator Minute #367)

Our prayer motivator verse from the Word of God today is Matthew 26:36 which reads: “Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.”

Our prayer motivator quote today is from William Bramwell. He said, “Pray, O pray, my brother! never, never quit your hold of the fullness of God; for time is nearly over, and if this fullness be lost it will be lost forever. I am astonished that we do not pray more, yea, that we do not live every moment as on the brink of the eternal world, and in the blessed expectation of that glorious country.”

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2012 in Prayer Motivator Minutes

 

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Hindrances to Prayer, Part 15 (The Prayer Motivator Devotional #426)

Our prayer motivator verse from the Word of God today is Romans 8:26-28 which reads: ” Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

Allow me to share with you some important insights regarding this verse from Matthew Henry’s Commentary:

Helpeth means—heaves with us, over against us, helps as we help one that would lift up a burden, by lifting over against him at the other end—helps with us, that is, with us doing our endeavour, putting forth the strength we have. We must not sit still, and expect that the Spirit should do all; when the Spirit goes before us we must bestir ourselves. We cannot without God, and he will not without us. What help? Why, the Spirit itself makes intercession for us, dictates our requests, indites our petitions, draws up our plea for us. Christ intercedes for us in heaven, the Spirit intercedes for us in our hearts; so graciously has God provided for the encouragement of the praying remnant. The Spirit, as an enlightening Spirit, teaches us what to pray for, as a sanctifying Spirit works and excites praying graces, as a comforting Spirit silences our fears, and helps us over all our discouragements. The Holy Spirit is the spring of all our desires and breathings towards God.

My personal encouragement to you today is this: No matter how long it takes to pray, no matter how difficult it is to pray, praying to God is the most important things you can do in your day. It should be the #1 priority above everything else you have to do.

Our prayer motivator quote today is from Thomas Coke. He said: “A real minister of the gospel is a man of prayer. Prayer is his grand employment, his safety, his first and perpetual duty; and under grace, the grand source of his consolation. Our instructions will be always barren, if they be not watered with our tears and prayers.”

Our prayer motivator devotional today is part 15 of our series titled “HINDRANCES TO PRAYER” from Dr. John R. Rice.

Prayers Can be Blocked by Wrongs Unrighted, Debts Unpaid, and Offended Brothers Unreconciled

If a wife’s prayers are hindered by the sin of rebellion against her husband, and the husband’s prayers are hindered by not taking his scriptural position in the home and in relation to his wife; it is also true that every wrong against others which is not made right stands between the Christian and God to hinder his prayers.

This must be the meaning of our Saviour in Matthew 5:23-24, “Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.”

The Old Testament saint who came to present himself before God at the Temple and offer a lamb for a sacrifice, represents a Christian in his prayers and service and praise. If the Hebrew saint were spiritually minded, he knew that that lamb represented Christ, the Lamb of God which should take away the sins of the world. He knew, if he were taught by the Holy Spirit, that the blood of that lamb pictured the blood of Calvary that would be shed for sinners. All his heart’s devotion to God would be expressed by the offering of this lamb, all his hope of pardon, all his trust in the atoning blood, all his loving adoration.

+ Plus, listen to Bart Millard singing “Have a Little Talk with Jesus”

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2012 in Prayer Motivator Devotionals

 

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Jesus Prepares for Combat With Fasting (Fasting Edition #166)

Our fasting quote of encouragement today is from Donald Whitney. He said: “A biblical definition of fasting is a Christian’s voluntary abstinence from food for spiritual purposes. It is Christian, for fasting by a non-Christian obtains no eternal value because the Discipline’s motives and purposes are to be God-centered. It is voluntary in that fasting is not to be coerced. Fasting is more than just the ultimate crash diet for the body; it is abstinence from food for spiritual purposes.”

Our fasting devotional today is titled “JESUS PREPARES FOR COMBAT WITH FASTING” from John Piper, author of the bestselling book “A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer”.

Matthew 4:1 says, “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.”

Under the Spirit’s leading Jesus prepared himself to meet the devil by fasting. The Spirit of God willed that the Son of God be tested on his way into the ministry, and he willed that Jesus triumph in this testing through fasting. Jesus triumphed over the great enemy of his soul through fasting.

It seems to me that this story should shake us. Here is Jesus standing on the threshold of the most important public ministry in the history of the world. On his obedience and righteousness hangs the salvation of the world. None will escape damnation without this ministry of obedient suffering and death and resurrection. And God wills that, at the very outset, the ministry be threatened with destruction—namely, the temptations of Satan to abandon the path of lowliness and suffering and obedience. And of all the hundreds of things Jesus might have done to fight off this tremendous threat to salvation, he is led to fast. To fast!

If Satan had succeeded in deterring Jesus from the path of humble, suffering obedience, there would be no salvation. We would still be in our sins and without hope. Therefore we owe our salvation to the faithful fasting of Jesus. This is a remarkable tribute to fasting. Don’t ride over this quickly. Think on it. Jesus began his ministry with fasting. And he triumphed over his enemy through fasting.

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in Fasting Edition

 

Richard Allen said, “The reason why we obtain no more in prayer is because we expect no more. God usually answers us according to our own hearts.” (The Prayer Motivator Minute #366)

Our prayer motivator verse from the Word of God today is Philippians 4:6 which reads: “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”

Our prayer motivator quote today is from D. E. Hoste. He said, “It must be remembered that there is spiritual wickedness at the back of all confusion and discord in the work of God. The servant of Christ must, therefore, practically recognize that his warfare is with these satanic beings and must be waged on his knees.”

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in Prayer Motivator Minutes

 

Hindrances to Prayer, Part 14 (The Prayer Motivator Devotional #425)

Our prayer motivator verse from the Word of God today is Romans 8:26-28 which reads: ” Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

Allow me to share with you some important insights regarding this verse from Matthew Henry’s Commentary:

We also notice The assistances which the Spirit gives us in that duty. He helps our infirmities, meant especially of our praying infirmities, which most easily beset us in that duty, against which the Spirit helps. The Spirit in the world helps; many rules and promises there are in the word for our help. The Spirit in the heart helps, dwelling in us, working in us, as a Spirit of grace and supplication, especially with respect to the infirmities we are under when we are in a suffering state, when our faith is most apt to fail; for this end the Holy Ghost was poured out.

My personal encouragement to you today is this: With all of the calamities and disasters that are happening in the world today, I am quite sure that you will agree that we are living in praying times. And the best way to combat crime, violence, immorality, family breakdown, natural disasters, wars, and Satan’s efforts to lead millions astray is prayer.

Our prayer motivator quote today is from C. H. Spurgeon. He said: “Shall I give you yet another reason why you should pray? I have preached my very heart out. I could not say any more than I have said. Will not your prayers accomplish that which my preaching fails to do? Is it not likely that the Church has been putting forth its preaching hand but not its praying hand? Oh dear friends! Let us agonize in prayer.”

Our prayer motivator devotional today is part 14 of our series titled “HINDRANCES TO PRAYER” from Dr. John R. Rice.

The husband should feel himself as one with his wife, one flesh. Ephesians 5:29 says, “For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it.” Ths husband is to love the wife as Christ loves the church and gave Himself for it.

And this general surrender to God’s pattern for the place of the husband in the home is essential to the full, happy life of daily answered prayer. The slacker husband will find that his prayers are hindered.

Discord in the home grieves God. And if there be children who rebel against parents, let them know that such rebellion turns away the face of God and stops His ears and hinders their prayers.

If an old-time revival of Bible Christianity can be had in the homes, how blessed, how far-reaching will be the results! Heartfelt surrender to the will of God and obedience to His plan in the home is more important than any kind of public worship or any duties of citizenship. The hindrances to prayer are often in the relations of wives and husbands and of children and parents in the home.

+ Plus, listen to Tobymac singing “City On Our Knees”

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in Prayer Motivator Devotionals

 

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Fasting as an Expression of Dissatisfied Contentment (Fasting Edition #164)

Our fasting quote of encouragement today is from David Brainerd. He said: “When I return home, and give myself to meditation, prayer, and fasting, a new scene opens, and my soul longs for mortification, self-denial, humility, and divorcement from all the things of the world. I have nothing to do with earth, but only labor in it honestly for God. I do not desire to live one minute for anything which earth can afford.”

Our fasting devotional today is titled “FASTING AS AN EXPRESSION OF DISSATISFIED CONTENTMENT” from John Piper, author of the bestselling book “A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer”.

As an act of faith, Christian fasting is an expression of dissatisfied contentment in the all-sufficiency of Christ. It is an expression of secure and happy longing for the all-satisfying fullness of Christ. Christian fasting does not tremble in the hope of earning anything from Christ. It looks away from itself to the final payment of Calvary for every blessing it will ever receive. Christian fasting is not self-wrought discipline that tries to deserve more from God. It is a hunger for God awakened by the taste of God freely given in the gospel.

 
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Posted by on October 28, 2012 in Fasting Edition

 
 
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