| Re: Prayer focus|
Is there bondage in America? In Scotland? Is it a mater of the President who is ruling over us? Do we feel our chains?
From Exodus 2:23-25:After years and years of slavery, a new political leader did not make a difference. And a generation got it. [i]And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage. And God [u]heard their groaning[/u], and God [u]remembered his covenant[/u] with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. And God [u]looked upon the children[/u] of Israel, and God [u]had respect unto [them][/u][/i]. We have a better covenant: Heb. 8:6 [i]But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a [b]better covenant[/b], which was established upon [b]better promises[/b][/i].
Is there anyone on this web site that does not know we are talking freedom from the bondage of sin in every single life in this country? In my life. We can hear Ravenhill: What are you saved from? It is not so much that the country needs revival or we Christians are ruined, we need revival or we are ruined. We know this. We say this. But do we feel our chains?
God also causes government leadership to acknowledge truth that they cannot fix the problem(s). 2 Kings 6:26-27: [i]And as the king of Israel was passing by upon the wall, there cried a woman unto him, saying, Help, my lord, O king. And he said, [u]If the LORD do not help thee, whence shall I help thee[/u]? out of the barnfloor, or out of the winepress?[/i]
Someone on this site spoke of Churchill calling England to fasting and prayer and God hearing. It was no National Day of Prayer event, as good as that can be, with breakfasts and speakers. With Churchill it was more like, [i]If the LORD do not help thee, whence shall I help thee[/i].
We have a better covenant and better promises. We that know them can plead them. He will not leave us as orphans.
I understand praying for our leaders. I believe that God is pressing many, Jruth included, with the necessity for prayer. My prayer for leaders is out of 2 Kings 6. Otherwise, I am praying for Revival, for real, on the streets, sweeping Biblical Revival. Enough of reading about it and hearing reports of it, as wonderful and encouraging as that is.
I had better stop.
| 2008/10/8 20:09||Profile|
Praying for America.
Praying for my neighbors.
Praying for the outcome of this election.
Praying for millions of unborn babies who are continuously slaughtered.
- But it is not enough to simply pray for the hungry. We must feed them.
- It is not enough to pray for the thirsty. We must give them something to drink.
- It is not enough to pray for those imprisoned. We must visit them.
- It is not enough to pray for the cold and shivering. We must give them clothes.
- It is not enough to simply pray for the slaughtered, unborn children...
In fact, I feel compelled to PRAY, EVANGELIZE, ACT and voice my beliefs via my right to vote.
I am reminded of the lyrics of a Keith Green song.
[b]A Billion Starving People[/b]
by Keith Green
I find it hard to turn away,
a billion starving people.
But what can one do,
I've heard you say
- you can't save someone's life!
I want to save a life today,
I want to get someone close with my Father.
Be them the bread of life today,
I want to help them get stronger,
help them last longer
And give them a chance to see Jesus.
I find it hard to just ignore,
the murdered unborn children,
Yes times have changed,
but still God warns,
you shall not take a life.
I want to save a life today,
I want to keep one alive for my Father
-- who will avenge the blood
of weak and helpless ones someday
-- whose lives are spilled out like water,
like lambs in the slaughter,
and each one is handmade by Jesus.
I find it hard to turn away, a billion starving people, a billion starving people.
Quote: Even so, come Lord Jesus!
31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
| 2008/10/8 20:21||Profile|
The phrase"its not enough to pray," Hmmm. In a land that is full of good works, I would argue that prayer is the problem, and always plays the poor relation to everything else. There is a lack of prayer in every level of Christianity. There is a reason that Western Christianity is in the state its in, its a lack of prayer (intimicy with God) Barna wrote a couple of years ago, that over 90% of professing Christians have never saw anyone come to the Lord through their personal sharing. He went on to say that if every professing Christian brought one person to Christ, and that one brought one, and then that one brought one, in less than three years the whole world would be saved. But we dont really believe that. We think that the answers lie with men, it does not. The definition of madness is to to the same thing over and over again and expect a different result. Our one hope, as Christians, for the world, is Christ. When Christians actually get on their knees and turn from their wicked ways then, and only then will God hear from heaven and perhaps heal our land.....brother Frank
| 2008/10/8 20:58|
Brother, I think that you read FAR too much into that phrase. It is NOT ENOUGH to pray for forgiveness if we still choose to live in sin. It is not enough to pray for the poor, the sick or the widowed without showing our prayerful love with action.
Yes, brother, there is a need for prayer. But you need to know that the prayers of many are dead. At any given Sunday, there will be a hundred thousand congregations offering up millions of prayers. Yet those same people refuse to live for the One to whom they pray.
Real prayer -- communication and intimacy with God -- is needed more than ever. But offering our prayers to this world without lifting a finger to help them is hypocritical. Faith without works, as you know, is DEAD.
This world is dying. It is going to Hell in a handbasket. We need to pray. But we should already know that! That is our vitality -- and I might add that a Christian who does not pray is probably not a Christian at all. We should be constantly in living communion with our God. This is what seperates our faith from the faiths of this present world. They say prayers out of obligation or need. We speak to God in order to know Him and fellowship with Him.
I agree with much of what you said. However, I certainly agree with the gist of the initial post. This temporary land that houses our temporary citizenship is poised to make a huge decision in November that will affect the world. It will affect the lives of millions (and deaths of unborn children). We need to pray for our neighbors. We need to pray for our families. We need to pray for our leaders. But I agree: We need to pray BEFORE, DURING and AFTER the election.
But we aren't simply called to pray...and leave it at that. We need to put actions with our prayers. If God impresses us to do something, we must do it. We should work for His good and His glory while we are still confined to this temporary place. I have a wife...and I am trying to do my best to provide for her in every way. I certainly pray for her well-being, but I also try to work and earn an income to support her. Likewise, I pray for this nation. But I think that we should provide a little "faith in action" with our prayers. I'm convinced that you would agree!
God bless you, brother!
| 2008/10/8 21:51||Profile|
Chris writes ....."I'm convinced that you would agree!" ....Its not always wise to say that about a Scotsman :)
Everything you said in your previous post I would agree with apart from the vote part. There is nothing at all in Scripture to support your claim that one must vote. If you feel so led brother, then I say more power to you but lets not make your philosophical stance a Scriptural one. It is niether Scriptural nor unscriptural to vote. I have stated, as have many good brothers and sisters on SI, that we stand upon the Word of God and nothing else, and many of us have paid a price for that and thats OK.
Here is where I stand and I am unashamed of it. 100% of all my hope is in Jesus. I have 0% hope in politicians, regardless of what kind they are. That is my personal opinion. If my children came and asked me "Daddy, I have a choice to make and they are both bad, but one is less bad than the other," the lesser of two evils scenario, I would advice my children "choose niether." Even if it hurts them.
Listen brother, I love you man and I refuse to let politics even remotely come between us. Let us each have or philosophical opinions. You vote and feel good about it. Here is what I know we can agree on, the plain and simple Word of God. On that we can unite and on that we can face a common enemy.
When we pray, we come into the presence of God. When we come into the presence of God, we are changed. When we are changed, He gets the glory, when He gets the glory, then people are drawn to Him. Its that simple. As you seek God's Kingdom first and His righteousness, then everything else in your life will fall into His place. It is my opinion, and I may be wrong, that the vast majority of Christians in America have put a large proportion of their trust and faith in men. They urge prayer for certain people out of fear. And strangely enough, all their fears come to pass anyway. Fear is the opposite of faith and perhaps these are exactly the dead prayers that you spoke of.............brother Frank
| 2008/10/9 0:02|
. . . strangely enough, all their fears come to pass anyway.
Lately I have come to see that there is a direct correlation between that which I fear and that which comes to pass. It is a trick of the enemy. He gets us to focus on something that we might lose, and in so doing, gets us to turn away from trusting God in that area - and as we are turned away, Satan is able to snatch it from us.
We are to fear God - and God alone.
| 2008/10/9 0:44||Profile|
Thank you, brother. However, I didn't say that "one must vote" (at least, I don't think that I said it). I don't feel that everyone must vote. However, I feel strongly that voting is not the equivalent to placing our faith and trust in men. Sometimes, it is simply sharing an opinion about the direction we would prefer our temporary country to go. But I don't think that everyone must vote.
I am happy that you are satisfied with your non-voting position. But let me also be clear: 100% of my hope is in Jesus too. My choice to vote is not indicative of a heart that hopes in the people or things of this world, or a notion that ANY choice is perfect, or an idea that I have hope in politicians. However, I still hate abortion. I reject the idea that certain loud individuals desiring office might want to infringe on my freedom to publicly share or proclaim my faith. I reject the notion that an activist judge or legislature might want to penalize preachers who speak against sin and immorality. I reject those in government who want to use our taxpayer dollars to support "artists" who mock and ridicule Christ or use their "art" as a form of pornography. I reject those politicians who try to protect pornographers who peddle their smut to lustful men, women and teens. I vote against a government, party or proposition that might want to redefine marriage to include homosexuals or wants to teach sex education to young children without their parents permission or take away parents' right to teach their own children. This is not placing hope in politicians. Rather, it can be argued that it is voicing a lack of trust in politicians!
I agree with you, brother. I love you dearly as a member of the family of God. While I personally feel compelled to vote out of what I feel to be a responsibility to my earthly family, friends, neighbors and city (and the privilege to share my voice regarding the direction of the government's policies), I would try my best not to judge a brother who chooses to not exercise that voice. Of course, this is sometimes harder to do with some other brethren who loudly preach against voting as though it exemplified worldliness. It is also difficult to withhold my feelings when some brethren are quite critical of certain examples of government policy, but did nothing to try and squelch that policy with a vote.
Anyway, I certain agree with a need to pray! We need to pray for ourselves, our families, our neighbors, our communities and our nations. I am still praying for a great move of God to flood this nation before the end comes! I certainly want the Lord to return, but I it would be great gain to have even more people prepared to meet Him!
| 2008/10/9 0:56||Profile|
Just for clarification, I do not have a non-voting position. I have a non-fearing position. You say that one of the reasons that you vote is because some politicians may infringe on your freedoms to share the Gospel. Yet the Scripture clearly says that He who the Son sets free is free indeed. No matter who is in office, we will always be free to share the Gospel. Now, perhaps there would be a price to pay for doing so, and it is this that i have found that causes fear amongst Christians. I am not saying this is your postition Chris, because I do not know you.
Heartsong said this ......
"Lately I have come to see that there is a direct correlation between that which I fear and that which comes to pass. It is a trick of the enemy. He gets us to focus on something that we might lose, and in so doing, gets us to turn away from trusting God in that area - and as we are turned away, Satan is able to snatch it from us.We are to fear God - and God alone."
I totaly endorse that statement. The Bible has a lot to say about fear. We read in Job chapter three that what Job greatly feared came upon him.
Just think Chris, if the government penalized preachers for sharing the Gospel, we would probably have a lot less pedlers of the Gospel, false teaches and wolves in sheeps clothing. Only those truly sold out would stand up and boldy proclaim the truth. So again, I would say to all Christians, if you are voting out of fear, then you must repent. Trust in God alone. Do not choose the lesser of two evils, it is not a Godly philosophy. If you do not vote out of fear, but simply want to carry out your civic duty and all of your trust is in Jesus, then I would say, go ahead, vote. Under those circumstances I would see no problem with voting. ...............brother Frank
| 2008/10/9 10:17|
The other night I went out with someone, and as we were driving the vice presidential debates came on the radio. Typically, I do not listen to such things, but this person wanted to hear the debates, so there I was, stuck listening to what I view as rhetoric. Kidnapped as it were.
At one point, Palin started to falter - and I realized with instant clarity that I was to pray for her - that God put me in this situation so that I might pray. I prayed that the Lord would give her strength to come forth with whatever it was that He would have said - and to give those words power and strength.
This is how we are to pray - that His will be done. To bind the forces of evil that would endeavor to destroy that which is the will of the the Lord. If He puts it upon our heart to vote - we must vote. If He puts it upon our heart to pray - we must pray. Keeping our eyes upon Him at all times and being fully accepting of that which is His will, and good pleasure, to do.
| 2008/10/9 12:14||Profile|
Thanks for the clarification. However, please bare with me as I do the same.
I don't hold a "must vote" position. I don't hold a "fear the future" or "fear the government" position either. I simply disagree with those who try to claim that the Scriptures prohibit voting. By your words, you are obviously not in that group. However, from time-to-time, there are believers who take an almost absolute stand against any sort of participation in the voting process. They have explained that they equate it to becoming "entangled" with the affairs of the world. I simply disagree with such a notion.
But let me make it clear: I don't fear this government (or ANY government). I am concerned, however, that this nation's government allows the murder of unborn children. Further, I do not want a new justice on the Supreme Court (or multiple appointed judges in Federal Courts) to cement or extend that slaughter of the unborn. I am disappointed by the fact that activist judges from the Left could attempt to define morality and then force it upon our pulpits, schools, laws and even in our very homes. I don't fear it (because I will still preach the Gospel), but I don't want it to happen nonetheless.
Brother, this isn't "voting out of fear" any more than you are NOT voting out of fear. It is recognizing the wrong direction that some are trying to turn this nation and attempting to correct it via my voice (my vote). How is this any different that a parent who expresses his concern at his child's school regarding an issue over what is being taught? It is not fear that promotes me to vote, but love for my wife, family, fellow believers, community and, indeed, the sheep wihtout a shepherd of this present world.
Quote:I agree that you are probably right. But are you actually ENDORSING this? It sounds as if you almost WANT this sort of persecution to come simply to seperate the wheat from the tares or the sheep from the goats. But this isn't our job. There were still weeds and goats (and false teachers) at the beginning of the Church. Even in the face of persecution, there is false doctrine. Look at the Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses and other cults. Persecution, they claim, actually caused them to grow in numbers and religious ambition.
Just think Chris, if the government penalized preachers for sharing the Gospel, we would probably have a lot less pedlers of the Gospel, false teaches and wolves in sheeps clothing. Only those truly sold out would stand up and boldy proclaim the truth.
I suppose that we can agree that we should not vote out of fear. We should vote out of love for those around us. We should cast our voice (our vote) in just what direction that we think our nation's policies should go. Some policies are clear (abortion, homosexual activism, suppression of public displays of faith, etc...) and others are not so clear. But should we simply wait around, complain about everything and neglect to cast a vote simple because the End is inevitable (and we have embraced the end)?
If Paul truly wanted to simply die, he shouldn't have used the Roman Empire's government/legal system to "appeal unto Caesar," testified to Festus or preached to Caesar's household. I'm sure that Paul, like the rest of us who know the Lord, longed for the end to come. But rather, Paul realized TO LIVE IS CHRIST. Death is certainly great gain. But Paul remained because he had a work to do. While that work did not consist of "voting," it did entail Paul's use of his temporary citizenship (even invoking it to save him from a flogging). He used that temporary citizenship to begin preaching to kings and princes.
Anyway, I am glad that we agree that we should not vote out of fear. In fact, we shouldn't even live in fear! And I am glad that you don't stand opposed to voting (or look down on those who do as being misled). This nation allows believers to have public opportunities that never existed anywhere in the world. Yes, believers have always evangelized, but never without fear of legislated persecution. There are some today who would take away such freedom. In the end, they will likely win. But I don't want that end to come yet. I want another day, another week, another year to spread the Gospel (as the Church -- including me -- has largely squandered this freedom from persecution). I don't fear the persecution that will eventually come (not at all). I would gladly lay down my life for the Gospel! But I am not hoping to haste that persecution either.
| 2008/10/9 12:27||Profile|