FIRST OF ALL PRAYER
· All over the world there is a compelling sense of urgency to take the gospel to every person on the face of the earth now.
· The Holy Spirit is speaking to churches everywhere (1) Prayer (2) Evangelism.
· To be effective in taking the Gospel to every person the church must engage in prayer.
· In the last days a Spirit of Prayer will be poured out on the church (Zech. 12:10). The purpose of that prayer anointing is to bring revelation of Christ and cleansing from sin.
2. PRAYER IS A PRIORITY
1 Tim. 2:1 “First of all”
· A priority mandate given to the church is to pray for unsaved people.
· Only the church has authority to invade demonic strongholds and set people free.
· Jesus said he would build a church that would prevail over the gates of hell. (Mt. 16:18).
· The gates of hell are the strategies that Satan uses to blind the eyes of people to the gospel and to hold them prisoners of darkness.
· The Bible picture of cities is one of groups of people enveloped in thick spiritual darkness made up of men’s sins and demonic powers ruling over them.
· The church’s priority - Pray!
· “Supplication” = earnest heartfelt prayer on behalf of others.
· “Intercessions” = Praying on behalf of others for will and purpose of God to be done. = “To stand in the gap” in warfare against Satan and sin.
· This is not just a one off prayer meeting but a lifestyle of persevering prevailing prayer that releases the power of God to work in men’s lives.
· The NT church succeeded in taking the Gospel throughout Asia (Act 19:10).
· The key to their widespread impact was prevailing prayer (Act 2:42).
3. PRAY FOR ALL MEN (v1)
a) 1 Tim 2:1 - “For all men”
4 - “God will have all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth”
· The will and desire of God is that all people be saved by acknowledging the truth.
· It is not the will of God that any perish but all come to repentance. (2 Pet. 3:9).
· Prayer makes the power of God available to change hearts and lives.
· The mandate given : Pray for all men - pray everywhere (v8).
· The first assignment of the church in a city is to see that every person is prayed for, not just generally but specifically by Christians who know them.
· Target praying Prayer with specific focus enables God’s power to be released on individuals enabling them to be open to the Gospel.
· Prayer must be accompanied by active evangelism so that people have opportunity to hear the Gospel.
b) What to Pray
· Each person in the city exposed to the Gospel (1 Tim. 2:4)
· Spiritual blindness upon people’s eyes be broken and eyes opened (2 Cor. 4:4)
· God send labourers across the path of people to reach out to them (Mt. 9:38)
· God prepare hearts of people so open and responsive and ready to receive (Act. 16:14; Ezek. 36:26).
· Holy Spirit open doors of opportunity to share the Gospel (1 Cor. 16:9; C0l. 4:3).
4. PRAY FOR GOVERNMENT AND CIVIC LEADERS
a) 1 Tim. 4:2 “All that are in authority”
1) People in roles of authority influence all those under their leadership.
2) Demonic powers target leaders and civic authorities and seek to influence them.
3) Many of the problems for which they are expected to provide solutions have no solution outside divine intervention.
· God is able to influence leaders and turn their hearts (Prov. 21:1)
· Christians are called to pray for all in places of authority not to react to them.
· Pray for them a) to be saved, b) for God to use them to fulfill his purposes c) for God to remove them if they resist his purposes.
b) The outcome of this prayer focus is that we may be able to live in all godliness and honesty. The only way for this to happen is for many unbelievers to be saved and for those who don’t, to become aware of the existence of God and fear Him.
5. PRAY FOR YOUTH
· 1 Tim 2:1, 4 “All men”
· Youth have always played a major part in carrying and spreading revival.
· Youth are at the foreground of the next generation emerging.
· Youth influence their friends, family, school, work place.
· Pray for God to touch young people and ignite them with faith and fervency.
· The power of God can fall on youth any where - in class rooms, school grounds, public places. They are open to new experiences and carry enthusiasm, fire.
6. PRAY FOR BUSINESSES TO PROSPER
1 Tim. 2:1,4 “All men”
· The mandate to the church is for global evangelism. This costs dollars.
· The mandate includes God’s provision of finance and resources.
· Pray for businesses to prosper so resources of city can be used for evangelism.
· Pray for families to prosper, people to find employment.
· As business activity prosper finances are released.
· Prayer affects the business community (Act. 19:24)
7. PRAY FOR LIVING CHURCHES
1 Tim. 2:1,4
a) Pray that living churches might move into a place of growth, unity and Holy Ghost activity in the community.
· Pray for vision and passion in churches.
· Pray for boldness and open doors of opportunity.
· The local church is the instrument in god’s hand for revival.
b) “Lifting up holy hands” (v8)
· Pray for personal and collective holiness
· Evangelism is not an event but a lifestyle. Holiness must permeate the church. sin creates open doors for demonic activity and bondage.
· Pray for great conviction power of the Holy Spirit and growth in holiness in the church.
c) “Without wrath and doubting” (v8)
· Two conditions are necessary for effective prayer.
i) Without wrath - freedom from irritation and anger towards our fellow man.
· Anger accumulates through offenses remaining unresolved.
· Offenses occur most commonly through careless words, misunderstandings and unmet expectations.
· When you pray forgive (Mk 11:25).
· Anger grieves the Holy Spirit and gives open access to demons.
ii) Without doubting - confidence in God’s Word and Character.
· God wants us to pray confidently boldly knowing what His will is - men perish - all come to repentance.
· Doubt and questioning God’s character and dealings, or questioning the character and behaviour of people we are praying for hinder our prayer.
· Pray confidently, boldly that all men everywhere might be saved and added to the church.