Sunday, October 13, 2013

Prayer Ministry Training


  • Prayer is a special ministry
  • Prayer is a priestly activity – Jer 37:3, Job 42:8, 1 Pet 1:9, Rev 5:10
  • We are a helper between the person and God – Heb 7:25, James 5:14, Col 1:9 2 Tim 1:6
  • We listen to the person's need
  • We ask God to respond – Num 12:13, James 5:14
  • We are a channel of God's answer to the person
  • We probably feel inadequate to the task – God knows and understands – Heb 7:28
  • We may be scared to be in this role – John 20:21, 2 Tim 1:7
  • Yet with God all things are possible – Matt 19:26
  • It is God who gives us an intercessor's heart – 1 Pet 4:11
  • We have the privilege of working together with God in this ministry

Part 1 – God - the Giver
  • God is everywhere – Ps 139:7-10
  • God is within us – John 14:23, Col 1:27
  • We are God's children – 1 Jn 3:1-2
  • God delights in responding to our prayers – Luke 18:7-8
  • God desires to give life, gifts and freedom – John 10:10, 1 Cor 12:7-11, 2 Cor 3:17
  • God gives himself to dwell in us – Is 7:14, Mat 1:23
  • He works in us to make us more like him – Eph 2:10, 4:15
  • He desires good for all mankind
  • He is not willing that any should perish – 2 Pet 3:9

Part 2 – Us - the Vessel
  • We are human and imperfect – Heb 7:28, Rom 3:23
  • God knew this when he commissioned us to continue the work Jesus started
  • In our imperfection God's glory is manifest – Heb 11:34, 2 Cor 12:9
  • At the same time, we cannot rest in our imperfection – 1 Pet 4:2
  • Sin separates from God – Isa 59:2
  • Sin hinders us in being a channel for God to work through
  • Need to keep short accounts with God
  • God desires to forgive, wants to forget, knows our frame – Psa 103:8-14
  • We present ourselves as a living sacrifice – Rom 12:1
  • We are never in a place of total transparency with God
  • Yet that is our goal
  • This means that our walk with God is a journey, not a state of being – Philippians 1:6
  • We will experience good times and dry times in our journey
  • Our relationship with the Lord will carry us through the dry spells
  • It may seem one-sided
  • But God is there behind the clouds – Mat 28:20, Heb 13:5
  • Our goal is total transparency with our Savior
  • When we are totally transparent, sinless, there is no hindrance in our ministry – Heb 12:1-3

Part 3 – The Method - Love
  • Treat God the way he truly is
  • He is right there inside you – John 14:23
  • Speak to him as though he is right there with you and listening
  • When we speak to a friend we expect an answer – Job 14:15, Psa 86:7, Isa 58:9
  • God will respond to your prayer request
  • There is no special technique
  • Just treat God as being real, and on your side! - James 4:8
  • Requirements
    • Pray according to God's will
    • Pray in faith, expecting an answer
    • Pray in Jesus' name
  • Pray according to God's will – 1 Jn 5:14
    • Be listening for God to give you a sense of his will – Col 1:9
    • Live closely with God, so you start to think like him – Phil 2:5
    • All we say should be according to the Bible and its principles – Isa 8:20
    • Stay within your area of expertise – 2 Cor 10:13
    • i.e. do not correct, counsel, or give direction. Your role is to pray for the individual in love, and pass on what the Lord tells you, sensitively – Phil 4:8
    • If more help is needed, refer them to the appropriate person, usually the pastor
    • If you are not sure how to pray, ask the Lord to tell you – Luke 11:1, Isa 30:21
    • Pray in your spiritual prayer language, ie. Tongues – 1 Cor 14-15
  • Pray in faith, expecting an answer – 1 Thes 5:24
    • If we are clean with God, he will respond
    • Long prayers are not necessary – Luke 20:47
    • Pray as the Holy Spirit leads – Luke 4:1, Rom 8:14
    • Invite the Holy Spirit to do his work
    • Detail what you are asking the Holy Spirit to do
    • Be expecting a miracle – 1 Tim 2:8
    • God delights to give good gifts to his children – Mat 7:7-11
  • Pray in Jesus' name – John 14:14, 16:23
    • This means that we pray with Jesus authority behind us – James 5:16
    • He has commissioned us to intercede for each other
    • We are to stand in the gap, on the behalf of the person for whom we are praying
    • We should be living a holy life – Eph 1:4
    • We treat God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit with reverence and respect
    • We do not joke about spiritual matters
    • We are clean inside and out, and in our speech – Eph 4:29, Col 3:8
    • We keep short accounts, not out of legalism but because we love God
  • Other guidelines
    • Usually men pray with men, and women with women
    • In a private setting always have a person of the same sex as the one being prayed for, present – Rom 14:16
    • Prayers should be positive. For example, “Lord please increase their faith” rather than “Lord please cast out their unbelief”
    • Prayer ministry can be tiring, so try to be fresh when you start
    • Have breath mints available to you during ministry, also use deodorant
    • If someone is slain in the Spirit, someone should be ready to catch them, and lay them in an open area. Be aware of modesty, cover appropriate areas.
    • Anointing or laying on of hands should generally be lightly done on the forehead, head or hands – James 5:14, Mark 6:13, 16:18
    • If the affected area is in a sensitive area, such as the abdomen for instance, ask them to lay their hand on the affected spot, and then you may touch their hand. Or alternatively touch their forehead or hand
    • The ministry area is for prayer, unnecessary talk should be kept to a minimum
    • Anything divulged in prayer ministry is confidential and should not be shared with anyone
    • Breaking confidence is a sure way to cause people to not trust your ministry
    • The only exceptions would be if there is a threat of hurting themselves or someone else. In this case, tell them that you are referring them to your pastor or a designated person. Then do follow through and tell the pastor, etc.
  • Conclusion
    • Thank you for your sacrificial service
    • You will be giving of your time, and energy
    • But you will be blessed immeasurably in allowing the Lord to work through you – 1 Tim 3:13
  • Prayer

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Filled with the Spirit - 1 Cor 2:1-5

Filled With the Spirit!
October 6, 2013
1 Cor 2:1-5

  • Let's be quiet for a few minutes and listen for what the Holy Spirit is saying to the church

  • What was it that got the early church started with such an explosion of new converts?
  • During the last weeks we have been examining the early church to find out how things started
  • Last week we talked about how prayer was the way the new church was started
  • What was prayer like?
  • Just spending time on our knees?
  • No, it was heartfelt, conversational two-way communication with God
  • We were encouraged to develop this conversational quality in our prayer
  • Today we are going to take a look at the role of the work of the Holy Spirit in the church!

  • 1 Cor 2:1-5

  • Paul in these verses explains what was the driving force in his ministry
  • It was not that Paul was such a great person, with a charismatic personality
  • He did not want to be known for oratory, or persuasiveness
  • But his preaching was accompanied by a display of the Spirit's power!
  • The Holy Spirit brings life wherever he goes
  • Paul knew this
  • He did not want dry preaching, but the life-giving power of the Holy Spirit
  • This is my goal for our church too
  • Sometimes we hear words spoken against places where the Holy Spirit is moving
  • Sometimes we wonder about some of the things that happen, and we are not sure if it is of God or if it is from the other source – there aren't a lot of choices!
  • The devil is negative – he comes to kill steal and to destroy
  • But the Holy Spirit brings life wherever he goes!

  • The early church was close to the Holy Spirit
  • They listened to him, they were obedient to what he said
  • As a consequence, the Holy Spirit was close with them too
  • This was the key to the miracles that happened in the ministry of the apostles, and of Paul, and others
  • Jesus sent the disciples out to preach the gospel, heal the sick and set people free
  • This was totally in line with the way the Holy Spirit operates
  • So naturally, people were healed, people were set free, and the preaching had results!

  • Ezek 47:1-12, Rev 22:1-2
  • There is a river that flows from the Temple, from God's throne
  • This river is called the river of life
  • This river represents the Holy Spirit
  • We read that where this river goes, it transforms deadness into life
  • The Dead Sea teems with fish, because the deadness has been taken away and replaced by the life-giving qualities of the Holy Spirit
  • There will be fishermen casting out their nets, drawing in a harvest of fish of all kinds!
  • Matt 13:47-48 – kingdom like a net that gathers fish of all kinds
  • Where the Holy Spirit goes, there will be a harvest of souls for the kingdom
  • This river is a large river
  • At the edges it is shallow
  • Yesterday I went out with my son Matt and my grandsons Jordan and Jarred
  • We were looking for a good place to go fishing
  • But the places where we looked were too shallow, not a good place to fish
  • We can step into the river and let it get up to our ankles
  • That is good, but won't catch a lot of fish
  • We can go in up to our waist, that's better
  • But it is still too shallow for that big harvest
  • We need to go out into the deep part of the river, where we swim in it
  • Then the river gives life and we are able to be effective in reaching people with the gospel
  • In the coming months we will be starting a Bible study, where we will be drawing closer in intimacy with the Holy Spirit
  • The Holy Spirit is our friend, our supporter, our confidant
  • He loves closeness with his people

  • The Holy Spirit brings life, and he will restore life to us!
  • This requires us to be totally filled with the Holy Spirit
  • I don't want to be wading at the edge of that river, I want to be swimming in it, over my head, breathing the breath of life from the Holy Spirit
  • If you would like to have a fresh filling with the Holy Spirit, please come forward now
  • Whether you would like to be filled for the very first time, or this would be the hundredth time, come and receive the river of living water
  • After the service we will be meeting and eating and training for the Billy Graham event in November. It should take around one hour