Friday, September 18, 2020

Is God Listening?

Thank you friends for joining us once again here at the Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries. I am your host Leonard V. Johnson. It’s a little wet outside today in Spring Hill, Florida. But, you know, we’re just a little under one day before the Feast of Trumpets – and I am so looking forward to that, as well as the soon-coming Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day! I was invited by Minister Guy LaMar to travel up to Athens, Alabama to be with them for the feast, but finances prevent me this year. But in spirit, I indeed will be there! Also, my thoughts and prayers go out to our dear friends in California, Oregon, and Washington who are enduring the choking smoke from the wildfires there – and our prayers go out to the families and friends of all those lost. The last article “Prophecy – According to Jesus Christ” was not a positive message, yet it is a message that must be said. In this article, I’d like it to be a positive and uplifting message.

While perusing Facebook I came across a video of a little girl, Audrey Nethery – who is so full of life – who has Diamond – Blackfan anemia (DBA). And she so touched my heart, that it made me think of this very subject today.

Does Almighty God hear our prayers!?

Now, I would guess that prayer – in and of itself – is an act performed by every religion on the face of this earth. Prayers are probably being made right now to all kinds of gods out there. My wife’s cousin appears to have an affinity for Buddha – who cannot help her a bit. Buddhism is a religion that does not include the belief in a Creator or any eternal divine personal Being. 1 There are gods of wood, stone, gold, silver – and even made to images, statues, and symbols all over the world. There are people who pray to such false gods as Allah, or Krishna, or Brahma of Hinduism, or even the infinite gods of Jainism. Or, even one of the dozen or so Greek gods of antiquity – such as Zeus, Poseidon, and Aphrodite. Millions of people pray every single day. And, true Christians also pray. But what differentiates the prayers of all these others and the prayers of true Christians!? Where do these prayers of ours go!? Do they go simply no farther than the ceiling!? Or, is there a great Being who is actually listening!? We seem to send these requests and desires at times – up to Almighty God – which appear to go unanswered at times. And is prayer even any good!? True story – after apply for social security disability, they sent me to see one of their psychologists. The doctor asked me, “Do you cry!?” And I answered, “Yes, every time I speak with God!” And so he asks, “How often is that?” “Two or three times a day,” I answered. And he started writing frantically in his notebook.

Does God need our prayers!? And what is the purpose of prayer – anyway!? Should true Christians be praying – and what should they be praying for!?

After all, can a person truly speak with God – anyway!?

I’d like to begin to dispute some of these opening comments concerning many of these pagan gods in this world.

In the Book of Daniel, the 5th chapter – and you might recall that the prophet Daniel encountered some of these gods in his service to King Nebuchadnezzar II. And after Nebuchadnezzar died, his son King Belshazzar took the reign and saw a writing on the wall which disturbing him greatly. And Daniel began to tell the king that he had forgotten what had happened to his father – for he had seen how God had raised his father up, giving him this mighty kingdom. But he had also seen how God had brought his father down, driven ‘from the sons of men, his heart made like the beasts, and his dwelling became like that of the wild donkeys.’ – cf. Daniel 5:21 NKJV. Daniel reminds him that he had forgotten these things.

Verse 22 – “’ But you his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, although you knew all this.’”

Now, Belshazzar had decided to have a great feast, take all the implements out of the temple of God, have a great banquet and drink and eat out of the very goblets and bowls that belonged to the temple. And God didn’t take very kindly to that.

So God wrote on the wall ‘MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.’

But look at what the prophet Daniel says in verse 23 – “’ And you have lifted yourself up against the Lord of heaven. They have brought the vessels of His house before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your concubines, have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, bronze and iron, wood and stone, which do not see or hear or know; and the God who holds your breath in His hand and owns all your ways, you have not glorified.’”

So in one verse here the prophet Daniel puts in perspective all of these pagan gods of silver, gold, bronze, iron, wood, and stone - like Buddha (who is worshiped as the “Enlightened One”). And Daniel says, ‘they don’t hear, see, and they don’t know anything – they’re just a waste of time. But the true God, who has your life in His hands – you’ve completely rejected!’

Turn with me in your Bible to the Book of 2nd Chronicles, the 6th chapter – because I want to cover here a little about King Solomon and some of his prayers which he made. This was made at the dedication of the temple.

This prayer was in a time of prosperity and happiness, and of peace – verse 14 – “ … ‘LORD [MASTER] God of Israel, there is no God in heaven or on earth like You, who keep Your covenant and mercy with Your servants who walk before You with all their hearts. 15) You have kept what You promised Your servant David my father; You have both spoken with Your mouth and fulfilled it with Your hand, as it is this day.’”

And, of course, he was referring here to the Davidic covenant, blessing him with a lineage which would go all the way through the house of Israel that there would never fail a man to sit upon the throne of David.

Verse 20 – “’ that Your eyes may be open toward this temple day and night, …’” – the dedication to the temple. All the priests and the congregation are there, the citizens are there – and the king is standing making this prayer to Almighty God. Saying, ‘if a man will come to this place and make his prayer to You, I pray that You will hear from Your throne their prayers.’

And he gives some examples – verse 22 – “’ If anyone sins against his neighbor, … 23) then hear from heaven, and act, and judge Your servants, bringing retribution on the wicked by bringing his way on his own head, … 24) Or if Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, … 25) then hear from heaven and forgive the son of Your people Israel.’”

Verse 26 – “’ When the heavens are shut up [a drought] and there is no rain … 28) When there is famine in the land, pestilence or blight or mildew, locusts … whatever plague or whatever sickness there is; … 30) then hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive, and give to everyone according to all his ways, whose heart You know …’”

And he even gives an example of a stranger that comes into the land from a distant country for the – verse 32 – “’ sake of Your great name and Your mighty hand and Your outstretched arm, when they come and pray in this temple; 33) then hear from heaven Your dwelling place.’”

Verse 38 – “’ and when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul [their life] in the land of their captivity, …’” – he’s even speaking of a time when God would allow them to be captured and sent off into captivity – ‘if they would rend their hearts and turn to Him.’

Verse 39 – “’ then hear from heaven Your dwelling place their prayer and their supplications, …’”

And what was the result of that prayer!? Well, the king then sat down, they ate the banquet and then went home – right!?

Look at 2nd Chronicles, chapter 7

Verse 1 – “When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the temple. 2) And the priests could not enter the house of the LORD because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD’s house.”

You wanna talk about a prayer! That, my friends, is a prayer! That certainly got God’s attention! God responded by consuming this offering and His glory filled the temple. Now wouldn’t that be an experience to witness after a prayer!?

Down in verse 14, God makes a covenant with His people – “’ if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 15) Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place.’”

Friends, exactly the opposite of what we just read in the Book of Daniel about the pagan gods – who ‘don’t hear, see, and they don’t know anything – they’re just a waste of time.’ God says that He will hear and He will see and He will respond.

Let’s turn now over to the Book of Nehemiah, chapter 1

This is an example of a prayer during troubling times. The prophet Nehemiah here was in captivity – recall, the Babylonians had taken them away captive in 587 BC. Then, the Babylonians had been subjugated by the Persian Empire in 539 BC. And here we find the prophet Nehemiah in captivity receiving news concerning Jerusalem – and he finds out that the city wall had been breached and its gates burned with fire.

So as a result of that – verse 3 – “And they said to me, ‘The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.’”

Verse 4 – “So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.”

Verse 5 – “And I said: ‘I pray, LORD God of heaven, O great and awesome God, You who keep Your covenant and mercy with those who love You and observe Your commandments, 6) please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, that You may hear the prayer of Your servant which I pray before You now, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned.’”

Notice the confession here.

Verse 7 – “’ We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, nor the ordinances which You commanded Your servant Moses.’”

Remember!? The patriarch Moses told them, “’ I know your rebellion and your stiff neck. If today, while I am yet alive with you, you have been rebellious against the LORD, then how much more after my death? … For I know that after my death you will become utterly corrupt, and turn aside from the Way which I have commanded you’” – Deuteronomy 2:27, 29 NKJV. Moses saw it coming.

Verse 8 – “’ Remember, I pray, the word that You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations; …’” – and that is exactly what happened to them! Here they all are in Babylon.

Verse 9 – “’ but if you return to Me, and keep My commandments and do them, though some of you were cast out to the farthest part of the heavens, yet I will gather them from there, and bring them to the place which I have chosen as a dwelling for My name.’”

So, the prophet Nehemiah is reminding God here of what He had told Moses. That ‘if we turn to You, even though we are in captivity, that You will respond.’

Verse 10 – “’ Now these are Your servants and Your people, whom You have redeemed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand. 11) O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name; and let Your servant prosper this day, I pray, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.’”

Immediately after that God allowed the prophet Nehemiah to go back to Jerusalem and in fifty-two days they rebuilt the wall in Jerusalem! It was a giant obstacle that was removed out of the way of the people of Israel. And I believe that it was in response to a prayer like Nehemiah gave.

Now, of course, we know that King David prayed. Let’s turn to the Book of Psalm, chapter 145

Verse 18 – “The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. 19) He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.”

King David knew that the prophet Nehemiah certainly knew that.

The prophet Isaiah says in Isaiah 64

Now, if you look through these prophets you will find a number of incidences where the prophets are not always standing and preaching a witness and a warning – they get to the point at times where they just pray fervently unto God, and it’s recorded for us here. And, what they pray is astounding!

Verse 1 – “Oh, that You would rend the heavens! That You would come down! That the mountains might shake at Your presence – 2) As fire burns brushwood, As fire causes water to boil – To make Your name known to Your adversaries, That the nations may tremble at Your presence!” – he’s saying, ‘I wish that You would come down to this earth, to rend the heavens!’

Verse 3 – “When You did awesome things for which we did not look, You came down, The mountains shook at Your presence. 4) For since the beginning of the world Men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, Nor has the eye seen any God beside You, Who acts for the one who waits for Him.” – he’s encouraging through this prayer that if a man would just wait upon God – God has this awesome and marvelous Plan.

On many an early morning just before the break of day, I take a short walk around my neighborhood. And I can’t tell you how far these early morning walks have helped me – in looking out at the heavens on these clear, hot, and humid nights, and it appears as if you can see forever. And I begin to speak with God – even thinking about the Milky Way galaxy in which we live, and “where does space end!?” Just how far does space go!? And I say to God, “Oh heavenly LORD, I can’t even imagine infinity.” My mind just can’t comprehend that – you mean to tell me that there is something like 1011 to 1012 stars in our Galaxy!? And, something like 1022 to 1024 stars in the known Universe!? 2 Does one of those galaxies have your name on it perhaps!? Is God going to plant the heavens – as He says, “I AM the LORD your God, Who divided the sea whose waves roared – The LORD of hosts is His name. And I have put My words in your mouth; I have covered you with the shadow of My hand, That I may plant the heavens, Lay the foundations of the earth, And say to Zion, ‘You are My people.’” – Isaiah 51:15-16 NKJV – with human beings at some point, maybe spirit beings!? I don’t quite know. His Plan is so awesome that we – boxed in this one little room here – we often forget that Almighty God is greater than us and that He has a marvelous Plan with a future for us. And we are told to ‘wait on Him.’

Verse 6 – “But we are like an unclean thing, And all our righteousness are like filthy rags; We all fade as a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, Have taken us away. 7) And there is no one who calls on Your name, …”

Friends, are you beginning to see a pattern here with these prophets – these men of God – who prayed!? They all acknowledge to God that we’ve all sinned and that we are not worthy of anything that God does for us. Yet, ‘we beseech You Father God and Lord Jesus to hear our prayers. To open Your eyes to the difficulties we face. To forgive us of our sins and to lend Your ear to our prayers and to look down upon us in this situation.’

Verse 8 – “But now, O LORD, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter; And all we are the work of Your hand.” – notice the humility. Notice the confession of sin.

Now let’s turn to the Book of Daniel, the 9th chapter

The prophet Daniel has a prayer here that I think is very fitting to read here.

Verse 4 – “And I prayed to the LORD my God, and made confession, and said, ‘O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments, 5) we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments.” – here it is again the very first things. A confession.

Verse 7 – “O Lord, righteousness belongs to You, but to us shame of face, as it is this day – to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, those near and those far off in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of the unfaithfulness, which they have committed against You. 8) O Lord, to us belongs shame of face, …” – ‘we got exactly what we deserved because we have rejected You.’

“… to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You. … 10) We have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in His laws, which He set before us by His servants the prophets. 11) Yes, all Israel has transgressed Your law, …”

And he sums it up – verse 17 – “Now therefore, our God, hear the prayer of Your servant, and his supplications, and for the Lord’s sake cause Your face to shine on Your sanctuary, which is desolate. 18) O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and see our desolations, and the city which is called by Your name; for we do not present our supplications before You because of our righteous deeds, but because of Your great mercies.”

Verse 19 – “O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and act! Do not delay for Your own sake, my God, for Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”

That is a most wonderful prayer! I love the way that a man of God does his very best to draw close to God and to beseech Him.

Notice the response –

Verse 20 – “Now while I was speaking, praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of My God, 21) yes, while I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reached me about the time of the evening offering. 22) And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, ‘O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to understand. 23) At the beginning of your supplications the command went out, and I have come to tell you, for you are greatly beloved; therefore consider the matter, and understand the vision.”

So, here an archangel appeared to him because of this prayer and gave him a skill and an understanding of the prophecies which were going to be given to him. And I think that’s an amazing answer to a prayer!

Turning over into the New Testament, the Book of Matthew, chapter 6

Now His disciples would see Him go out – sometimes being gone all night – and pray. They would see him go over ‘a stone’s throw away’ – remember the night when He was betrayed. He went out, knelt down, and prayed, and He was dripping large drops of blood from His forehead.

Jesus says – verse 5 – “’ And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men.’ – indeed, in a great many of these Catholic and Protestant churches they have what’s called a prayer kneeler so that the whole congregation sees – for their glory. They want to appear to others as righteous. “ … ‘Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.’ – in other words, ‘that’s it. Their prayer stops there. They got their reward – everybody got to see them praying – and that’s it.’

Verse 6 – “’ But you, …’ – speaking to His disciples and all who follow Him. ’ But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.’

So, He tells us how to pray. We are not to stand up amongst a congregation and go, ‘O Lord! O, Lord! O, Lord! O Lord!’ and put on a “really big shew’! – as Ed Sullivan would say. Our prayers are something that is very private between us and our Creator God – God the Father. Jesus has said, “’ do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven’” – Matthew 23:9 NKJV – and every time He prayed to God, He called Him Father. And, He goes on in this chapter speaking about not using vain repetition – and sure enough, nearly every movie with prayer in it goes – ‘Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. ….’ They are doing exactly what Jesus said not to do. Do they think that’s the only prayer that we have to pray!?

This prayer here which Jesus gave was an outline – to help us to learn to pray. Because His disciples wanted to know. And we certainly can use this –

Verse 9 – “ … ‘Hallowed be Your name. …’ – you can think about all the names of God and the glory and power which He has, the wisdom, the strength, and the honor deserving to His name.

Verse 10 – “’ Your kingdom come.’ – of course! We pray for His kingdom every day, that it will come soon!

“ … ‘Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.’ – Jesus says on a number of occasions, ‘I’ve come to do the will of My Father. I’ve come to do the things which He sent Me to do. Everything He commanded Me to do that I have done.’ And even when He was praying He said to Father, “’ Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.’” And in my prayer to Father concerning Audrey Nethery – this sweet little girl who has this terrible and vile disease, I asked, “Father, if it is Your will to heal her in this lifetime; nevertheless not my will, but Yours, be done. If it is not Your will – we know she will be completely healed upon her resurrection.” This is the example He set for us.

Verse 11 – “’ Give us this day our daily bread.’ – our sustenance, both physical and spiritual.

Verse 12 – “’ And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors. 13) And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’

A little model prayer – a short outline prayer – that helps us and lets us know what we should be praying for.

In Matthew, chapter 7

Verse 7 – “’ Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8) For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.’

Verse 9 – “’ Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10) Or if he asks for fish, will he give him a serpent? 11) If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!’

This is the same God that responded to those prayers we read about in the Old Testament! He is the same One! “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” – Hebrews 13:8 NKJV.

Now – over in the Book of Acts, chapter 4, God answers this prayer in a very unusual way –

This is where the apostle's John and Peter were thrown in prison for preaching the gospel message, and they were brought before the rulers, the elders, the scribes, as well as Annas the high priest and his family who counseled amongst themselves, saying, “so that it spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that from now on they speak to no man in this name.” And so they threatened them –

Verse 23 – “And being let go, they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24) So when they heard that, they raised their voice to God with one accord and said …” – and I don’t know who said this prayer. Was it the apostle John!? Or maybe Peter!?

“ … ‘Lord, You are God, who made heaven and earth and the sea, and all that is in them, 25) who by the mouth of Your servant David have said:

‘Why did the nations rage, And the people plot vain things? 26) The kings of the earth took their stand, And the rulers were gathered together Against the LORD and against His Christ.’

Verse 27 – “’ For truly against Your holy [Child] Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod [Antipas] and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together 28) to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done. 29) Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word.”

They didn’t ask to be hidden or even protected – but to have the courage to speak even more boldly than before!

Verse 30 – “by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy [Child] Jesus.’”

And what was the result of that prayer!?

Verse 31 – “And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness. 32) now the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul [life]; neither did anyone say that any of the things he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common.” – the very ground shook the foundation of the building as a result of that prayer!

Can we get excited about praying to God in the way that these men did!? The powerful and awesome God in heaven above, surely, He hears our prayers – doesn’t He!? Absolutely!

Well, what should we be praying for!? Let’s go over a few of the things –

  • “…pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.’” – Luke 21:36 NKJV. Speaking of the ‘great tribulation’ to come, but also I might add, some of the very tribulations today – i.e. Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, west coast US wildfires, etc.
  • ’ And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath.’” – Matthew 24:20 NKJV. It’s obvious that there will be a tumultuous end-time and the Sabbath will play a part in that.
  • “ …pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.’” – Matthew 9:38 NKJV. Pray that Almighty God will send laborers unto us.
  • “ …pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.’” – Matthew 5:44b NKJV.
  • “ …pray, lest you enter into temptation.’” – Mark 14:38 NKJV.
  • “… prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings [for leaders] and all who are in authority, …” – 1 Timothy 2:1 NKJV. Pray for our president and our leaders that we may live a peaceable life here in the United States of America.
Over in the Book of Ephesians, the 6th chapter

This is the apostle Paul’s instruction concerning prayer. Here he lists the Armor of God – gird your waist with TRUTH, the breastplate of RIGHTEOUSNESS, shod your feet with the preparation of the GOSPEL OF PEACE, the shield of FAITH, the helmet of SALVATION, and the sword of the Spirit – the WORD OF GOD.

Verse 18 – “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.” – and indeed we should pray that evangelism would go out unto the world by preaching and teaching the gospel message. The Church of Jesus Christ Online Ministries has – as of 17 September 2020 – proclaimed and witnessed Jesus Christ’s gospel message unto 62 countries and provinces!

And, notice what he says in verse 19 – “and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20) for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”

Here, the apostle Paul was praying that the Church of God would pray for him – that he might be given the mouth to speak and to preach the gospel message in an evangelistic capacity.

In the Book of Philippians, chapter 4

Verse 6 – “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer, and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God.” – and, just yesterday - as an example -  our garage door rollers went out, causing the garage door to hang-up open. Immediately I felt the stress level rising. And immediately I went before Almighty God and our Lord Jesus Christ in prayer, “Please, dear Father and dear Brother, take this added stress from me.” And They took this stress from me. The door was able to be repaired on the very same day. Now, what happens if you don’t pray!? Can God hear you if you don’t pray!? It is something to think about – isn’t it!? The apostle Paul says, ‘make your request known unto God.’ If you don’t, does everything just same the same!?

Verse 7 – “and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

In 1st Thessalonians, chapter 5

Verse 17 – “pray without ceasing.” – and this doesn’t mean pray all the time without stopping. It means NEVER give up your prayer life. We should always be praying, friends – every day – beseeching God for His help and strength.

In Hebrews, the 4th chapter

Verse 14 – “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, JESUS THE SON OF GOD, let us hold fast our confession. 15) For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16) Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

Our Lord Jesus Christ walked many a trail on this earth. Go back and look at all the places He went – in every city, going up and down in Palestine. All in Galilee. He went into every city and preached – whether they rejected Him or not. Whether they received Him or not. And it was a difficult path to walk – because people hated Him, He wasn’t politically correct, the political people and the leaders of the synagogue couldn’t stand Him, they misunderstood Him, they hated the fact that He dishonored their idea of God’s Law. Yet, when He was standing there before His accusers, ‘He did not revile in return’ – Isaiah 53:7; 1 Peter 2:23 NKJV. This indeed is a wonderful example!


I believe prayer is a very effective way to change a situation. It is our clear channel directly to Almighty God and our Lord Jesus Christ. And it doesn’t cost anything – but the results are often overwhelming!

I think that the Church of God should pray for a great number of things – maybe you personally have a whole list of things you need to pray about.

We should pray for God’s protection, for our well-being, for our families and children.

We should pray for God’s almighty hand in our endeavors. Both for the work of the Church and for the work that we each do.

Friends, I would like to ask that you pray for the evangelism of the Church of God and the preaching of the gospel message that goes out. That this veil would be lifted from the minds of those out there in the world – the 7.8 billion people – and that the shackles of Satan the devil would be broken. And that a majority would begin to see the light of Jesus Christ shine through in their life. Pray for this ministry and pray for God’s people out there – scattered all over the world. They need our prayers, and they need God’s healing hand. Pray for skill and understanding, for strength, for wisdom, and knowledge. Pray for those who are sick and afflicted – with all sorts of tribulations. And, friends, pray ‘Your kingdom come.’

When we have poured out our hearts unto God, in earnest prayer, we just might be amazed at what happens next. □


1 Harvey, Peter (2019). "Buddhism and Monotheism", p. 1. Cambridge University Press.

2 How many stars are there in the Universe? The European Space Agency. Retrieved 16 September 2020.

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