Prevailing Prayer Preparation
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This is represented as being a matter even of Divine wonderment:. The very fact that so many disciples, and in so many parts of the world, are forming prayer circles or unions is itself a great incentive to increased and united prayer. Our Lord taught a great lesson in Matthew He said: "If two of you shall agree [symphonize] on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father which is in heaven. Symphony is agreement of sounds in a musical chord, and depends upon fixed laws of harmony.
It can not be secured by any arbitrary arrangement. One cannot lay his fingers accidentally or carelessly upon the keys of a musical instrument and produce symphony of sounds. Such touch may evoke only intolerable discord, unless regulated by a knowledge of the principles of harmony. Nay, there is even a deeper necessity, namely, that the keys touched shall themselves be in tune with the whole instrument. Two conditions, then, are needful; first, that a skilful hand shall put the whole instrument in tune; and then that an equally skilful hand shall touch keys which are capable of producing together what is called "a true chord.
This language evinces Divine design. He is teaching a great lesson on the mystery of prayer, which likewise demands two great conditions; first, that the praying soul shall be in harmony with God Himself; and then that those who unite in prayer shall, because of such unity with Him, be in harmony with each other. There must be, therefore, back of all prevailing supplication and intercession One who, with infinite skill, tunes the keys into accord with His own ear; and then touches them, like a master musician, so that they respond together to His will and give forth the chord which is in His mind.
No true philosophy of prayer can ever be framed which does not include these conditions. Many have false conception of what prayer is. To them it is merely asking for what one wants. But this may be so far from God's standard as to lack the first essentials of prayer. It may be asking something to consume it upon our own lusts [ James ]. We are to ask "in the name" of Christ.
But that is not simply using His name in prayer. The name is the nature; it expresses the character, and is equivalent to the person. To ask in Christ's name is to come to God, as identified with the very person of Christ. A wife makes a purchase in her husband's name. Literally, she uses his name, not her own. She says, "I am Mrs. A———," which means, "I am his wife, identified with his personality, character, wealth, commercial credit, and business standing.
Again, we are told that, if we ask anything "according to His will," He heareth us. But what is asking according to His will but ceasing to ask according to our own self-will?
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Here the impulse is not human, but essentially Divine. It implies a knowledge of His will, an insight into His own mind, and a sympathy with His purpose. Now is this possible unless by the Holy Spirit we are brought into such fellowship with God as that He can guide us in judgment and yearning, and teach us His way? He is indeed "able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think," but it is "according to His power which worketh in us" [ Ephesians ].
If that power work not in us first, how can it work for us, in answered prayer? In order to gain higher results, wrought for the Church or the world, in answer to supplication, there must first be deeper results wrought in the believer by the Holy Spirit. In other words, there must be a higher type of personal holiness if there is to be a higher measure of power in prayer.
The carnal mind does not fall into harmony with God, does not even see and perceive His mind, and hence the carnally-minded disciple can not discern the will of God in prayer, but is continually hindered and hampered by mistaking self-impelled petitions for divinely inspired prayers, confounding what self-will craves with what is spiritually needful and Scripturally warranted. God is calling His people to a revival of faith in the Divine efficacy of prayer. Our Lord teaches us that the prayer of faith has the power of a fiat or a Divine decree. God said sublimely, "Let light be! The Lord Jesus Christ says: "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed" in which, however small, is the possibility and potency of life —"ye shall say to this mountain, Be thou removed; or to this sycamore tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and it shall obey you" [ Matthew ; Luke ].
This is the language not of petition, but of decree. It is, in some sort, a laying hold on Omnipotence, so that nothing is impossible to the praying soul. When we reach such heights of teaching and compare them with the low level of our life we are struck dumb with amazement, first at the astounding possibilities of faith, as put before us, and then at the equally astounding impossibilities which unbelief substitutes for the offered omnipotence of supplication.
When we think of the possible heights of intercession we seem again to hear the saintly McCheyne crying out: "Do everything in earnest! If it is worth doing, then do it with all your might.
Great Quotes On Prayer
Above all, keep much in the presence of God; never see the face of man till you have seen His face. Jacobi must have been thinking along these lines when he said: "My watchword, and that of my reason, is not I, but One who is more and better than I; One who is entirely different from what I am—I mean God. I neither am, nor care to be, If He is not! The power of such prayer defies all competition or imitation by the most perfect forms of liturgy. Who can copy or canvass the imprisoned flame of a priceless gem with mere brush and pigments!imspeakoros.cf
Prevailing Prayer for America’s Soul.
Or counterfeit the photosphere of the sun with yellow chalk! There is a flame of God which prayer lights within; there is a glow and light and heat in the life which can be kindled only by a coal from the golden altar which is before the throne. It is only the few who find their way thither and know the enkindling power; but to those few the Church and the world owe mighty upheavals and outpourings.
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Chemical galvanism possesses this peculiarity, that an increase of its powers cannot be gained by increasing the dimensions of the cells of the battery, but can be by increasing their number. We need more intercessors if we are to have greatly increased power. The number of cells must be increased. More of God's people must learn to pray. The foes are too many for a few to cope with them, however empowered of God. The variety of human want and woe, the scattered millions of the unsaved, the wide territory to be covered with intercession—all these and other like considerations demand multiplied forces.
Each human being has only a very limited knowledge of human need. Our individual circle of acquaintance is so comparatively narrow that even the most prayerful spirit cannot survey the whole field. But when in all parts of the destitute territory supplicators multiply, even these narrow circles, placed side by side and largely overlapping, cover the whole broad field of need. Our own personal and limited knowledge and range of intelligent sympathy meet and touch similar and sympathetic souls, so that what we do not see or feel or pray for, appeals to others of our fellow disciples; and so, in proportion as the intercessors multiply, every interest of mankind finds its representatives in the secret place and at the throne.
We cannot make up for lack of praying by excess of working. In fact working without praying is a sort of practical atheism, for it leaves out God. It is the prayer that prepares for work, that arms us for the warfare, that furnishes us for the activity. It behooves us, studying intently the promises to prayer, to say unto the Lord: "This being Thy word, I will henceforth live as a man of prayer and claim my privilege and use my power as an intercessor.
Here is the highest identification with the Son of God. It is almost being admitted to a sort of fellowship in His mediatory work! During this dispensation His work is mainly intercession. He calls us to take a subordinate part in the holy office, standing, like Phinehas, between the living and the dead to stay the plague; like Elijah, between heaven and earth to unlock heaven's flood-gates of blessing and command the fire and flood of God!
Is this true? Then what can be more awful and august than such dignity and majesty of privilege! Ignatius welcomes the Numidian lion in the arena, saying: "I am grain of God; I must be ground between the teeth of lions to make bread for God's people. Who will join the risen Lord in a service of intercession? The greatest difficulty in the way of practical conversion of men may not be in God's eyes so much a barrier of ungodliness among the heathen as a barrier of unbelief among His own disciples!
The sixteenth century was great in painters, the seventeenth in philosophers, the eighteenth in writers, the nineteenth in preachers and inventors; God grant that the twentieth may be forever historically memorable as the century of intercessors. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.
Daniel Nah: Prevailing Prince of Prayer
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