The Passover Mandate: Without An Expiration Date

It is without question that the crucifixion plan was designed before the foundation of the world, and that Jesus was born, lived, died, and resurrected, according to God’s perfect timing. Daniel’s prophecies, as well as history, confirm all the above.

The clear perfection of God’s time and timing therefore presents to Christians both an invitation and a challenge to prayerfully consider their attitude and response to Old Testament verses that appear time-date-stamped with words like “forever”, or “all generations”, or “from this time forth and forevermore”. It’s of course easy to embrace the eternal PROMISES, but what about the eternal DIRECTIVES, such as this one in regard to observance of the Passover:

Exodus 12:12-14, 16-17
12 “For I will pass through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord.
13 Now the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you; and the plague shall not be on you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
14 ‘So this day shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance.

17 On the first day there shall be a holy convocation, and on the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation for you. No manner of work shall be done on them; but that which everyone must eat—that only may be prepared by you.
17 So you shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this same day I will have brought your armies out of the land of Egypt. Therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as an everlasting ordinance.

Lest any Gentile believer in Jesus be deluded into thinking they were NOT of the household of Abraham, Paul tells us this:
Ephesians 2:19
Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,

AND ALSO:
Colossians 3:11
where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.

It would seem logical and appropriate that the believing Church, in embracing the blessings and promises of son/daughter-ship with God, would also embrace the eternal admonitions and mandates as they appear in scripture.

I am personally inclined to believe Jesus proclaiming: “Do this in remembrance of Me” encompasses but also extends beyond Communion and foot-washing to a gentle reminder of the Exodus 12:14 mandate re the everlasting ordinance of Passover observance. He surely and personally modeled that observance.

That special celebratory holiday was/is to serve as a perpetual reminder of God’s supernatural deliverance from impossible oppression. Praying into this, I believe the minimization or absence of Passover observance may steal from us some of the confidence our great God intends us to walk in as the challenging end of this age comes upon us.

Intentional alignment with the fullness of the Word is to our benefit. Convenience or Inconvenience really ought not be a factor. Jesus modeled for us a life of inconvenience, for Kingdom cause.

God’s timing is perfect. Mine, sadly, is not. This should have been published weeks prior to this current Passover season. Meanwhile I believe God honors our response at all times. Prayerfully discovering what one’s personal observance might be, wants to be a product of prayer and study of the Word. The scriptures above are a reasonable start. As a Jew, I can say part of the challenge is also not getting “too Jewish” in our observances. Some of the “traditions” of Passover are literally just that: traditions. Some of those traditions are good. Some are religious baggage. But without scriptural controversy, what is written appears to point to intentional observance, forever, by all who would call themselves children of God. And there will be next Passover. I can humbly assure you our precious Lord will not return in the next twelve months. The parts of the eschatological puzzle are coming together quickly, but it won’t be that quick.

All Scripture NKJV

Posted in Apocalypse, Communion, End Times Related, Old Testament | Leave a comment

Discovered: The Secret Place

19 Oh, how great is Your goodness,
Which You have laid up for those who fear You,
Which You have prepared for those who trust in You
In the presence of the sons of men!
20 You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence
From the plots of man;
You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion
From the strife of tongues.
(Psalms 31:19-20. NKJV)

Do you see what David is revealing to us in this Psalm?
He had been shown, by God, a secret place that was hidden and reserved for those who would accept the invitation to lay down their own wills and agendas and bear the mantle of a visible ambassador of the invisible Kingdom of God.

WANTED: Salt of the earth. Apply here.

David, in his desperately wild worship-intimacy with God, in his hunger for the “one thing” of God’s presence, had discovered some place secret that was available to everyone, but hidden from most. David had discovered the secret pavilion where God’s presence dwelt. Tabernacle at its finest.

In the public place of highly visible trust is a secret place with God.

Posted in Anointing, Everything, Faith, Fear of the Lord, Free Will, God's Word, Personal Relationship, Psalms, Understanding & Knowing God, Worship | Leave a comment

Co-Incidence: Genesis 24

I often say “coincidences” are coordinated incidences initiated by our sovereign God. I have seen this confirmed time and again in my own life. More importantly, I see it confirmed by the account of scripture. These are not simply “card-tricks-by-God” to demo His capabilities, control, or handiwork. This has to do with the glorious and critical nature of Kingdom-planning, Kingdom-timing and Kingdom-progression.

Solomon told us there’s a time for every purpose under heaven (Ecc. 3) and then proceeded to cite a laundry-list of weighty polar-opposites (speech and silence, war and peace, birth and death, etc.) to drive this point home: in order for us to be effective for God we must be in His purposes, in His timing, in the Spirit. Confirming this, Paul speaks of being in the Spirit so that we might redeem the time, because the days are evil.

Ephesians 5:15-18
15 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,

Do you see a theme here?
Understanding what the will of the Lord may be for a particular situation transcends simply recognizing holy vs. unholy. It should mature to a wisdom of timing-anointing. A “holy” or “kosher” decision or action may still not be the will of the Lord, when it is out of time. We want to get this right. I’ve spoken and written about this many times, yet I feel the imminent conclusion of this age warrants yet another mention. A great biblical example (bible examples incite and ignite faith) is the account in Genesis 24. Remember: we’re looking way-early into the birthing of the people of covenant. Elderly-Abraham and elderly-Sarah finally/miraculously receive Isaac, their son of promise (albeit after the messy situation of Ishmael), and now Isaac needed an appropriate wife for the bloodline of covenant promise to proliferate.

Genesis 24:1-52
1 Now Abraham was old, well advanced in age; and the Lord had blessed Abraham in all things.
2 So Abraham said to the oldest (“old” connoting age and experience and earned trust) servant of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please, put your hand under my thigh (you can search this site to read about “under thigh” promises and vows. Hint: “testimony”),
3 and I will make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell;
4 but you shall go to my country and to my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”

LONG NOTE: Gen 15:1-2, in mentioning Eliezer as the head servant of Abraham’s household, lends credence to the theory that the same Eliezer from Damascus was indeed the servant mentioned in chapter 24. Abraham (in 15:1-2) had presumed Eliezer would be the logical heir to his life, to his fortune and even to his God-promise, since Abraham at that time was childless. Eliezer surely saw the miracle of Isaac’s birth and surely recognized that that divine event had precluded his own potential inheritance, and yet Eliezer remained a trustworthy servant, and therefore a blessed man.

5 And the servant said to him, “Perhaps the woman will not be willing to follow me to this land. Must I take your son back to the land from which you came?”
6 But Abraham said to him, “Beware that you do not take my son back there.
7 The Lord God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and from the land of my family, and who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, ‘To your descendants I give this land,’ He will send His angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there.
8 And if the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be released from this oath; only do not take my son back there.”
9 So the servant put his hand under the thigh of Abraham his master, and swore to him concerning this matter.
10 Then the servant took ten of his master’s camels and departed, for all his master’s goods were in his hand. And he arose and went to Mesopotamia, to the city of Nahor.
11 And he made his camels kneel down outside the city by a well of water at evening time, the time when women go out to draw water.

Although in the next verse Eliezer of Damascus honors his master Abraham by referring to God as his master’s God, it is obvious the Syrian had his own established relationship with the Lord.
12 Then he said, “O Lord God of my master Abraham, please give me success this day, and show kindness to my master Abraham.
13 Behold, here I stand by the well of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water.
14 Now let it be that the young woman to whom I say, ‘Please let down your pitcher that I may drink,’ and she says, ‘Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink’—let her be the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac. And by this I will know that You have shown kindness to my master.”

15 And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder.
16 Now the young woman was very beautiful to behold, a virgin; no man had known her. And she went down to the well, filled her pitcher, and came up.
17 And the servant ran to meet her and said, “Please let me drink a little water from your pitcher.”
18 So she said, “Drink, my lord.” Then she quickly let her pitcher down to her hand, and gave him a drink.
19 And when she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I will draw water for your camels also, until they have finished drinking.”

(Bingo! She responds perfectly)
20 Then she quickly emptied her pitcher into the trough, ran back to the well to draw water, and drew for all his camels.

(Wise Eliezer still says nothing proclamatory).
21 And the man, wondering at her, remained silent so as to know whether the Lord had made his journey prosperous or not.

(Apparently the lengthy camel-drinking event was sufficient time for Eliezer to process the amazing coincidence)
22 So it was, when the camels had finished drinking, that the man took a golden nose ring weighing half a shekel, and two bracelets for her wrists weighing ten shekels of gold,
23 and said, “Whose daughter are you? Tell me, please, is there room in your father’s house for us to lodge?”
24 So she said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel, Milcah’s son, whom she bore to Nahor.”

Amazing! Rebekah was of the younger generation – not Isaac’s generation. Rebekah was the daughter of Bethuel, not Nahor. Bethuel was Isaac’s first cousin. This was not about scripture affirming cradle-robbing – in this case so Isaac could marry a young babe. This was about Isaac having been born so late in Abraham’s life that effectively Isaac was closer to Rebekah’s age than Rebekah’s dad’s age. How perfect is God’s provision? How perfect is God’s timing?

25 Moreover she said to him, “We have both straw and feed enough, and room to lodge.”

Skip to v35 – Rebekah’s brother Laban is on the scene and hears the well story. Eliezer and his men and camels are greeted into the dwelling of Nahor.

(Eliezer takes the time to recount the critical back-story)
35 The Lord has blessed my master greatly, and he has become great; and He has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female servants, and camels and donkeys.
36 And Sarah my master’s wife bore a son to my master when she was old; and to him he has given all that he has.
37 Now my master made me swear, saying, ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I dwell;
38 but you shall go to my father’s house and to my family, and take a wife for my son.’
39 And I said to my master, ‘Perhaps the woman will not follow me.’
40 But he said to me, ‘The Lord, before whom I walk, will send His angel with you and prosper your way; and you shall take a wife for my son from my family and from my father’s house.
41 You will be clear from this oath when you arrive among my family; for if they will not give her to you, then you will be released from my oath.’
42 “And this day I came to the well and said, ‘O Lord God of my master Abraham, if You will now prosper the way in which I go,
43 behold, I stand by the well of water; and it shall come to pass that when the virgin comes out to draw water, and I say to her, “Please give me a little water from your pitcher to drink,”
44 and she says to me, “Drink, and I will draw for your camels also,”—let her be the woman whom the Lord has appointed for my master’s son.’
45 “But before I had finished speaking in my heart, there was Rebekah, coming out with her pitcher on her shoulder; and she went down to the well and drew water. And I said to her, ‘Please let me drink.’
46 And she made haste and let her pitcher down from her shoulder, and said, ‘Drink, and I will give your camels a drink also.’ So I drank, and she gave the camels a drink also.
47 Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the nose ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists.
48 And I bowed my head and worshiped the Lord, and blessed the Lord God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the way of truth to take the daughter of my master’s brother for his son.
49 Now if you will deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me. And if not, tell me, that I may turn to the right hand or to the left.”
50 Then Laban and Bethuel answered and said, “The thing comes from the Lord; we cannot speak to you either bad or good. 51 Here is Rebekah before you; take her and go, and let her be your master’s son’s wife, as the Lord has spoken.”
52 And it came to pass, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, that he worshiped the Lord, bowing himself to the earth.

How great is our God?
And how great a mess a begrudging prayerless servant, or a convenient but wrong Canaanite wife, or the wrong well, or, or, or, or, could have been – but instead, by His grace, and with the faithful participation of virtually all parties involved, this story turns out gloriously.

OUR TAKEAWAY: God can, and indeed desires to, coordinate all the incidences of our lives. Co-ordinated incidences are truly PLAN A, and I humbly contend the closer we advance to the conclusion of this age, the more of these incidences we ought to be looking for, praying in, and walking in. This is the season for the revelation of the sons of God. The creation groans, and it’s not groaning as it awaits the revelation of more dead religion, it is groaning as it awaits the revealing of the Spirit-led, divinely anointed sons and daughters of the soon and coming King. That would be us. Will you receive that?

We’ve been born for such a time as this – to be in the Spirit, understanding His will, redeeming the time, doing great exploits.

Ephesians 5:15-18
15 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,

What a formula for spiritual success: Filled with the Spirit, building ourselves up praying in the Holy Spirit. No wonder there’s such warfare against these truths, sadly even in many churches. And yet God will have His people, and His will on earth will be accomplished in and through those who intentionally walk in His ways.

All scripture NKJV

Posted in Anointing, Apocalypse, End Times Related, Everything, Faith, God's Word, Holy Spirit, Old Testament, Personal Relationship, Prayer, Timing | Leave a comment

SYNECDOCHE – NOT a city in upstate NY

syn·ec·do·che\sə-ˈnek-də-(ˌ)kē\ – noun
MERRIAM WEBSTER defines “synecdoche” as: a figure of speech by which a part is put for the whole (as fifty sail for fifty ships), the whole for a part (as society for high society), the species for the genus (as cutthroat for assassin), the genus for the species (as a creature for a man), or the name of the material for the thing made (as boards for stage)

This helps clarify and enlighten some verses of scripture that some might be inclined or convinced by others to write off as necessarily historical and therefore disqualified to YET occur, because the equipment, setting, or other phraseology appears too ancient and out of date – an example being found in this intense end-of-age prophecy by young Zechariah:

Zechariah 12:2-4
2 “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem.
3 And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.
4 In that day,” says the Lord, “I will strike every horse with confusion, and its rider with madness; I will open My eyes on the house of Judah, and will strike every horse of the peoples with blindness.

Some of the end-of-age haters of Israel may indeed come as actual riders on actual horses, but description of ancient weapons and rudimentary means of transportation ought not be so literally clung to as time-framed markers to cause us to quickly write off yet-to-occur events. Synecdoche, folks. The Middle Eastern writers of scripture utilized this bonafide literary tool.

The very most intense conflicts prophesied at the conclusion of this age are, well, at the conclusion of this age. Stay tuned, and take heart: your daily intimacy with and obedience to the Lord is your very best preparation and assurance of eternal success.

Further in the same chapter Zechariah tells us more about these great and upcoming events (in fact confirming the timeframe for the entire chapter):

Zechariah 12:10
10 “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.

This reveals tremendous promise re Israel finally beholding the Pierced One, finally and in great numbers understanding the plan of salvation they for the most part originally rejected, and at that time grieving both for their national act of Messiah-rejection as well as for the suffering they unnecessarily underwent for 2,000 years. God’s great grace will accomplish and reveal amazing things in those upcoming days, both in Israel and in the world.

The following supports and seamlessly coordinates with the above – both in subject matter and in timeframe. If you require confirmation of the timing of Ezekiel 39 – this is revealed to us just prior to the peephole revelation by Ezekiel (chapters 40 and beyond) into the NEXT age. Chapter 39 is about the conclusion of THIS PRESENT age.

Ezekiel 39:21-29
21 “I will set My glory among the nations; all the nations shall see My judgment which I have executed, and My hand which I have laid on them.
22 So the house of Israel shall know that I am the Lord their God from that day forward.
23 The Gentiles shall know that the house of Israel went into captivity for their iniquity; because they were unfaithful to Me, therefore I hid My face from them. I gave them into the hand of their enemies, and they all fell by the sword. 24 According to their uncleanness and according to their transgressions I have dealt with them, and hidden My face from them.” ’
25 “Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Now I will bring back the captives of Jacob, and have mercy on the whole house of Israel; and I will be jealous for My holy name— 26 after they have borne their shame, and all their unfaithfulness in which they were unfaithful to Me, when they dwelt safely in their own land and no one made them afraid.
27 When I have brought them back from the peoples and gathered them out of their enemies’ lands, and I am hallowed in them in the sight of many nations,
28 then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, who sent them into captivity among the nations, but also brought them back to their land, and left none of them captive any longer.
29 And I will not hide My face from them anymore; for I shall have poured out My Spirit on the house of Israel,’ says the Lord God.”

All Scripture NKJV

BTW #2/FYI #1: The city in upstate New York is “Schenectady” – and that name is derived from a Mohawk word skahnéhtati meaning “beyond the pines”.

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this is a subscription test – really

Hi Subscribers (there’s lots of you!)
Apologies for the inconvenience of a test-post, but folks (myself included) have not been receiving recent posts.
HOPEFULLY this test post is coming to you, in which case all ought to be well and working.
If you do indeed get this, I would recommend you go to the site and read the TIMELY RE-POST: THE OUTHOUSE INCIDENT.
Thanks.
E

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A Timely Re-Post: THE OUTHOUSE INCIDENT

On Feb 5, 2014 (nearly three years ago) I posted a writing called THE OUTHOUSE INCIDENT. It is reposted at the end of this writing, for your convenience. I did touch on the wording of the original post just a little, only for clarification purposes. Functionally, it is word for word as posted 2/5/14.

I stated this in that post:
“Learning the Kingdom dynamics of ruling and reigning, authority and power, accountability and position, will become more critical, both as this age accelerates toward its conclusion, and as the next age comes upon us.”

FAST FORWARD TO NOW – the election season and one day after President Trump’s Inauguration:

A. The saints, often in a spiritual hurry to identify and label all that’s happening on earth, and to liken, by way of reference, one current event to another historic one (and one person to another) can be quick to apply to someone a “Cyrus anointing”, a “Darius anointing”, a “someone-else anointing”. Enter, Donald Trump, now President of the United States. It admittedly can sound sort of spiritual when someone names an Old Testament bible character and then declares their mantle or anointing as being upon someone right here, right now. But, really?

God has always been and will always be the Creator, and therefore remain and reveal Himself creative. In many ways our quick-comparison of one person to another may satisfy our human desire to sort oranges by size or line up our pencils by height, but in reality it discounts God’s great creative ability and purpose. By divine design, each person is very much his/her own person, with his/her own destiny, own calling, own strengths, own weaknesses. That is our glory – to discover who WE are in God, as opposed to WHO ELSE we might think we are, or who we might think someone else may be.

Add to the equation the radically different times/place/situation component, and the “so-and-so anointing” being on someone else can quickly lose air. I’m sure some bible scholars, in defense of mantle-impartation-naming, may want to bring up the Elijah/Elisha events and that mantle pass-down. That was a unique and bible-noteworthy exception. A prophet-mentor passed down his mantle to his direct prophet-disciple. We’re not talking 2,500 years apart, different continents, different bible ages (OT/NT), heathen king versus elected raised-casual-Methodist businessman, or wicked empire vs our out-of-line covenant nation.

Cyrus II, king of Persia, was called out by name by the Jewish prophet Isaiah, as the one who would release the Jews from their 70-year captivity. Confounding the critics and cynics, Isaiah declared this prophetic plan about 150 years before Cyrus was even born, and around 80 years prior to the Jews even BEGINNING their captivity. Go figure.

Isa 45:1-4
1 “Thus says the LORD to His anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have held– to subdue nations before him and loose the armor of kings, to open before him the double doors, so that the gates will not be shut:
2 ‘I will go before you and make the crooked places straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron.
3 I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that I, the LORD, who call you by your name, am the God of Israel.
4 For Jacob My servant’s sake, and Israel My elect, I have even called you by your name; I have named you, though you have not known Me.

Granted, Donald Trump has expressed empathy and alignment with Israel, and that is a VERY GOOD THING, both for Israel and for our country. But that does not galvanize the Cyrus anointing. And granted, “Trump” is a notable name for a leader called to overcome some heavy circumstances that have come upon our nation (in large part due to our disobedience to God). But Trump ain’t Cyrus. BTW/FYI: “Cyrus” means “keeper of the furnace”.

God’s sovereign hand was indeed upon Cyrus, the heathen king, for the purposes of God, and for the sake of “Israel My elect” (Isa 45:4, above).

By comparison, America has not been in captivity to another empire. We’ve been free, and in that freedom we’ve foolishly chosen to exercise disobedience and disregard for the ways of righteousness. Those decisions are guaranteed to bring trouble to a nation.

As a covenant nation (since 1620, even before we were “officially” a nation), America is indeed in a very special place of relationship as well as accountability to God. But America is not Israel. Nor is 2017 AD to be mistaken for 539 (or 536) BC.

Pertinent to this writing is our understanding to, and appreciation of, the fact that there’s a time-clock tick, tick, ticking, throughout this age, and, like all “fused” events, this age has a rather explosive end. The prophetic fuse of Daniel’s timing prophecies was already ignited by the time Isaiah was writing about Cyrus.

It is now 2017. The first advent occurred 2,000 years ago – as did the before-spoken crucifixion and resurrection (slain – by plan – “before the foundation of the world” – Rev 8:13). Our nation, and in fact our world, is being actively called to a place of repentance prior to the second advent of Messiah. Our Lord told us in advance that He’d be shaking heaven and earth, the sea and dry land, in a purposely troublesome albeit merciful effort to draw men to Messiah:

Haggai 2:6-7
6 “For thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land;
7 and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the Lord of hosts.

Two millenniums of grace, during which time the doors of salvation have opened wide for “whosoever will”, remain open right now. And after that, the return of the Righteous Judge.

B. We sadly see a nation, OUR nation, raging and even rioting over the legal election of a President, ranting how unqualified President Trump is, was, and will be. How liberal or progressive (or mature) is that activity?

FIRST – the very concept that our governmental structure provides for an election process is a statement of our freedom. Transitions in most countries are by civil war. Our system has proven workable, for centuries, as long as the citizens abide by the laws of the land.
SECOND, whenever one party is displaced by the other party’s candidate, there will always be disappointment and frustration. THAT is to be understood.

The way many – even in influential positions – have responded in this time and to this election, is a sorry testimony to ignorance, immaturity and most importantly ungodliness. My hope and prayer is that saints will behave as saints during these times, and during all times.

Rabbi Paul wrote this clear directive to Timothy (and therefore to all saints) during the days of Emperor Nero, as Christians were being dipped in tar and lit up as garden lights for his dinner parties.

1 Tim 2:1-4
1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men,
2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.
3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,
4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Donald Trump is not Cyrus, nor is he called to be Cyrus. He is called to be our President. And we are called to pray, in faith, understanding the times. The issue is not good-leader or bad-leader, who you voted for or who you did not – or even if you had the freedom to vote.

Prayer and godly behavior is our/your faithful obedience to the Word of God. Whether you voted for Donald Trump or not, is moot. How the saints respond and act during increasingly trying times, is intended, by God, to be the testimony-light to the world (in wild contrast to the human-torch martyrs of Nero). We are called to shine brighter and brighter in a darker and darker world.

Additionally, we are being tested by our God re our understanding of, and compliance to, scriptural directives and truth.

When our Lord returns, and He surely will, in flaming fire (II Thess 1:8), all will get straightened out, rectified, rewarded, and recompensed. Peter confirms that divine plan, and puts forth a question (v 11-12) that deserves a living response from each person who would declare themselves a believer:

2 Pet 3:10-12
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,
12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?

I humbly believe the anointing on Donald Trump is, uniquely, the Donald Trump anointing. He has been called, like each of us, for such a time as this. His accountability is enormous, being the President of our country. We would do very well to be praying for him to be himself, not calling him names, cursing him, quick-labeling him Cyrus, Darius, or anyone else, and certainly not joining the raging rebellion that would defy leadership changes – even if/when we do not agree with those changes. At the jeopardy of sounding political, I would put forth the proposition that the party currently entrusted to govern our land AT VERY LEAST speaks of their intention to:
A. Support Israel;
B. Protect the unborn (50% of which are female);
C. Defend the God-ordained sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman.
Those three critical matters are indeed critical matters – marked by God as High Priority.
All sin is not equal. There are abominations and specific, iniquitous provocations revealed in the scriptures that will incite God and invoke curses and judgments upon a land.

No man (except our Lord Jesus) is perfect. No political party is without sin and without fault. You might want to circle back in this blog site and read “NOPE AND NOPER, AND GOD” – parts one and deux.

If there is hope for America (I am believing God for that), it will be IF and AS the Church starts living, behaving, and praying, like the Church – preaching and living righteous truth at all times, at all cost. 2 Chron 7:14 starts with an “IF” and points to God’s people, not the other people, who don’t know any better, and have in fact been taken captive by Satan to do his will:

2 Timothy 2:24-26
24 And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient,
25 in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth,
26 and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.

These verses are functionally unlivable by any Christian who would, even with some kind of good intent, join in the raging work of vocal or physical defiance against an elected government. Let God be our judge, and their judge.

Our conduct, our living Spirit-directed scriptural lives, will have way more eternal impact both upon the destiny of our land and also upon our individual destinies than mantle-declarations coupling ancient emperors to recently elected officials, or raging and rioting protests against the electoral process.

Donald Trump needs to find his own unique place in God, just like each and every praying saint is being challenged to find their own place in God. We are called to be praying for him, and for our nation, and to be keeping our eyes focused upon God – Who is doing a marvelous work in our time. “Marvelous” doesn’t necessarily mean fabulous, or wanted, or celebratory. It means it will cause people to marvel at what’s occurring, and what lies ahead. These are marvelous times.

The post below is about a young man of God, David (who the scriptures assure us will actually rule and reign under Messiah – Ezek 34:23-24) who understood anointings, position, godly response, and God’s sovereignty. We can all learn from this, myself included.

And now the Re-Post: “THE OUTHOUSE INCIDENT”

There was never a greater king in Israel than David, the son of Jesse. Meanwhile, the king prior to David would be in the running for one of the worst. That would be Saul.
Saul had already blown it, time and again, by the time David was anointed (by Samuel) to be king. So the anointing was upon David, and yet the man remaining on the throne was Saul.

In fact, by the time David was anointed by Samuel, God had Saul in His cross-hairs:
1 Sam 16:13-14
13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel arose and went to Ramah.
14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and a distressing spirit from the LORD troubled him.

It would therefore appear pretty obvious as to who was in line to rule, and who was in line for eventual replacement (at best) and destruction (at worst). Still, Saul remained on the throne because God still had some work to do. I believe some of the work still to be done was in David, and was for us to behold, for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world have come.

Learning the Kingdom dynamics of ruling and reigning, authority and power, accountability and position, will become more critical, both as this age accelerates toward its conclusion, and as the next age comes upon us.

Prior to David’s anointing, Samuel’s word to Saul clearly reveals the state of affairs:
1 Sam 15:27-28
27 And as Samuel turned around to go away, Saul seized the edge of his robe, and it tore.
28 So Samuel said to him, “The LORD has torn the kingdom of Israel from you today, and has given it to a neighbor of yours, who is better than you.

The prophet’s robe was torn in desperation. It was a prophetic act by a desperate man.
Meanwhile, David’s plight/flight continues, as Saul musters his army and he himself goes to hunt down the one who would eventually replace him. Jealousy and desperation are two terrible taskmasters.

1 Sam 24:1-4
1 Now it happened, when Saul had returned from following the Philistines, that it was told him, saying, “Take note! David is in the Wilderness of En Gedi.”
2 Then Saul took three thousand chosen men from all Israel, and went to seek David and his men on the Rocks of the Wild Goats.
3 So he came to the sheepfolds by the road, where there was a cave; and Saul went in to attend to his needs. (David and his men were staying in the recesses of the cave.)
4 Then the men of David said to him, “This is the day of which the LORD said to you, ‘Behold, I will deliver your enemy into your hand, that you may do to him as it seems good to you.’” And David arose and secretly cut off a corner of Saul’s robe.

Are you kidding me? A potty story in the Holy Scriptures?
Amen, and amen.

I believe our great God was, and remains, so intent upon making a divine point abundantly clear, that He orchestrated the affairs of men, at a time and in a place that would leave no wiggle-room for any misunderstanding. This account almost appears as hyperbole, except for the fact that it remains in the timeless canon of Scripture for all generations, for our edification and admonishment.

We are not talking about a king on his golden throne, holding a scepter. We’re presented a desperate king on the “other kind of throne” – actually probably squatting in the dark, doing what one must do. Demeaning, lowly, inglorious. Some privacy please. But God wanted David’s holy response to be publicly proclaimed. So the lights are on and the stadium is full of onlookers, including all students of scripture, for all time. Apologies, Saul.

As “chance might have it”, David and his followers just happen to be hiding in that very cave. David’s men (accurately) looked at this “coordinated incident” as a divine opportunity from the Lord, to take out the one who was eventually going to be taken out by God Himself.

Verse 4, again:
4 Then the men of David said to him, “This is the day of which the LORD said to you, ‘Behold, I will deliver your enemy into your hand, that you may do to him as it seems good to you.’” And David arose and secretly cut off a corner of Saul’s robe.

Unlike desperate-Saul tearing prophet-Samuel’s robe, desperate-David cuts the robe of the king. But David was a man of God. Although these events occurred centuries prior to Daniel’s prophetic revelation of “authority dynamics”, David already knew in his spirit Who was in charge of the heavens and the earth.

Daniel 2:21
21 And He changes the times and the seasons; he removes kings and raises up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding.

Meanwhile, back to the cave:
1 Sam 24:5-6
5 Now it happened afterward that David’s heart troubled him because he had cut Saul’s robe.
6 And he said to his men, “The LORD forbid that I should do this thing to my master, the LORD’S anointed, to stretch out my hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD.”

The New King James bible translates the Hebrew word “masiyah” as “anointed of the Lord”. We would recognize it better as messiah. The anointed one.

As a result of his own intimacy with God, David understood eternal Kingdom principles, and in that understanding recognized that Saul, not yet having been removed by God Himself, still sat in the position of anointing, even though he was not living the lifestyle of anointing. It did not matter to David.

David’s statement (and therefore his theology) was not corrected by God, even though there are many times in Scripture when God in His love, mercy, and accuracy would indeed correct false statements or faulty conclusions made by even His most beloved servants (He corrected Elijah when the prophet bemoaned his being the only righteous one left in Israel – 1 Kings 19:14-18. And He corrected Nathan when the prophet agreed with then-reigning David that David building God a temple would be a good idea – 1 Chron 17:1-5).

It would therefore seem reasonable to consider God’s silence in the cave (at David’s proclamation about “messiah Saul”) as being His quiet affirmation of David’s theology.

Further studying the subsequent dialogue between David and Saul, we can see that David clearly understood who he was, who Saul was, who God was, and what would be the eventual outcome to the injustices of life. David was no chump. And yet David chose the very highest ground, and in so choosing postured himself for promotion by God.

1 Samuel 24:8-18
8 David also arose afterward, went out of the cave, and called out to Saul, saying, “My lord the king!” And when Saul looked behind him, David stooped with his face to the earth, and bowed down.
9 And David said to Saul: “Why do you listen to the words of men who say, ‘ Indeed David seeks your harm ’?
10 Look, this day your eyes have seen that the Lord delivered you today into my hand in the cave, and someone urged me to kill you. But my eye spared you, and I said, ‘I will not stretch out my hand against my lord, for he is the Lord’s anointed. ’
11 Moreover, my father, see! Yes, see the corner of your robe in my hand! For in that I cut off the corner of your robe, and did not kill you, know and see that there is neither evil nor rebellion in my hand, and I have not sinned against you. Yet you hunt my life to take it.
12 Let the Lord judge between you and me, and let the Lord avenge me on you. But my hand shall not be against you.
13 As the proverb of the ancients says, ‘ Wickedness proceeds from the wicked. ’ But my hand shall not be against you.
14 After whom has the king of Israel come out? Whom do you pursue? A dead dog? A flea?
15 Therefore let the Lord be judge, and judge between you and me, and see and plead my case, and deliver me out of your hand.”
16 So it was, when David had finished speaking these words to Saul, that Saul said, “ Is this your voice, my son David?” And Saul lifted up his voice and wept.
17 Then he said to David: “You are more righteous than I; for you have rewarded me with good, whereas I have rewarded you with evil.
18 And you have shown this day how you have dealt well with me; for when the Lord delivered me into your hand, you did not kill me.

God’s kindness to Saul, via David, should have led Saul to repentance. Instead, it only led him to regret. Regret being insufficient without the added component of complete turning, Saul was destined to eventual destruction by the hand of the Lord.

Where is all this going to? It is going to the New Testament, to the days of grace, to the intense times in which we live.

The Kingdom principle of God placing sometimes unlikely people into anointed positions, and still sovereignly reigning over it all, continues to mystify many. But it appears to not mystify those closest to the Lord.

Rabbi Paul is a good example. Ananias the high priest was actively opposed to the gospel message, and yet the anointed apostle demonstrated his own David-and-Saul-in-the-cave theology as he stood before a courtroom of ungodly men and repented for basically calling a spade a spade:

Acts 23:1-5
1 Then Paul, looking earnestly at the council, said, “Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.”
2 And the high priest Ananias commanded those who stood by him to strike him on the mouth.
3 Then Paul said to him, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! For you sit to judge me according to the law, and do you command me to be struck contrary to the law?”
4 And those who stood by said, “Do you revile God’s high priest?”
5 Then Paul said, “I did not know, brethren, that he was the high priest; for it is written, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’”

There is a more divine realm than the one in which we physically function daily. Our great God is watching us, testing us, and training us to live by the principles of that divine realm. Those principles include understanding and recognizing our God’s sovereignty over all things. Either He is God of all, or else He is not God at all.

Leaderships come and go. The ones in higher places, with higher callings, have the greater, not the lesser, accountability. The Centurion got it. He told Jesus that he was a man “UNDER authority”, not “IN authority”.

I believe we’re being invited to allow God to be God, and to humbly recognize His jealousy over His bride, the Church. His intent is to put the right people into the right places, for the right times – to grow people, sovereignly as well as experientially, into their own fullness.

He is therefore dealing with us all, wanting to perfect us all. Iron will continue to sharpen iron, with sparks. His timing is not our timing. His desire is for all of us to walk in intimacy, and therefore in success. The exercising of our free will is what will determine our individual success or failure.

Leader or follower, the redeemed are called to be stewards of the greater grace. God is rooting for us all. He wants us all to make it. His desire is that we all live up to our destiny calls.

The warnings put forth towards all (saved or unsaved) who would choose to continue to walk in error, or rebellion, arrogance, or unbridled authority, are clear. And they are severe. An admonition for the saved, the servant of Luke 12 is master over other servants, but acting as a cruel authority.

This is from the lips of our Lord:
Luke 12:45-49
45 “But if that servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and be drunk,
46 “the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
47 “And that servant who knew his master’s will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
48 “But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.
49 “I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!

God is cooking up something radical these days. The whole creation groans, waiting for the revelation of us (Rom 8:19).

This is why we are told to pray for those in authority. This is why we’re told love covers a multitude of sin. This is why we’re told that the world would know we are His disciples by the love we have one for another.

I believe a radical demonstration of our true faith has and will remain our belief in God’s ability to accomplish His purposes, to prepare His people, and to perfectly coordinate who will be in what position in His church.

The only person who will ever be able to prevent any one of us from realizing our full destiny call, will be ourselves. No man, no ministry, no created being will be able to separate us from the fullness.

We’re invited to have a heart like David.

All scripture NKJV

Posted in Anointing, Apocalypse, End Times Related, Everything, Faith, God's Word, Holiness, Obedience, Old Testament, Personal Relationship, Prophets, Righteousness, Testing, Understanding & Knowing God | Leave a comment

Greetings In The Name Of Jesus.

It’s absolutely wonderful if the name Jesus is sweet to your ears. If it is offensive, or off-putting, I can make no apologies. Y’Shua will work. That’s the original Hebrew, if you like. It was and remains the name of the only begotten Son of God, and someday every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord. So let this be a litmus test for your heart condition. In the privacy of this reading, if this name offends you like no other name offends you, I suggest you question why, and that you do something about it.

If you believe in a God who admires those who would ask Him honest and sincere questions, stop and pray, and ask about this Man called Jesus, whose very name offends you.

If you don’t believe in God, then there ought to be no offense at all. After all, you have chosen to visit this website. Perhaps you should read on, with an open heart and mind.

Some Simple Ground Rules:

1. It is wise for my name not to be on this site, for Kingdom purposes. Nothing fishy, I promise. If comment posting is up and running (I am debating), and if you post  anything (and you know me) please don’t use my name, or my wife’s name, initials, stuff like that. I am truly not that big a deal – that knowing me by name means anything at all. Know Jesus. Ya-da – Hebrew for “knowing” escalates to a level of intimacy akin to Abraham knowing his wife Sarah. Know Jesus.

2. The purpose of this site is a place for my thoughts, teachings, etc. I’ve been asked and encouraged by many folks to start something like this. If commenting does remain in place, know that I am good with discussions, but not with arguing. I appreciate that godly folks can prayerfully read particular scriptures and come away with varying conclusions. I believe some of that has to do with the delightful and mystifying and majestic plans of the Creator, Who creatively anointed His servants to pen His revealed Word. And I do not think differing opinions and conclusions need be confusing, unless such results contradict the personality of God revealed through the entirety of His Word – in which case those opinions are suspect.

That said, I am not interested in opinions about doctrine that have little or no Scripture to support the position. That is a waste of time for all parties. Personally, I’ve had to modify, change, abandon and adjust my doctrines and beliefs over time, as I’ve learned my Bible, and learned by revelation that has coordinated with my learning from the Bible. In the end (and in the beginning and middle as well, for that matter), it really doesn’t matter what you’ve been taught. What matters is what the Word says. We are all personally accountable to discover that. In fact, the only person to whom what you’ve been taught really matters, is the person who taught you. He/she is extremely responsible for that position:

Matt 5:19
19    “Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
(NKJ)

Posted in Everything, God's Word, Jesus, Personal Relationship, Prayer, Understanding & Knowing God | Leave a comment

Prayer In These Times – 7 weeks of notes

THIS IS A LOOOOONG POST, and here’s why:

Last summer there was a series called PRAYER IN THESE TIMES. Notes from SOME of those sessions were posted on this site. Others were not. These are being re-posted at this time as a resource for folks who might want to go deeper in studying the matter of prayer, and particularly for those who might be attending the current session: EFFECTIVE PRAYER – The call to the Church In These Times.

These originally were notes for spoken presentation, which then got posted as printed notes. They’re therefore sort of conversational, and there’s likely typos.

Also – you may find some notes, towards their end, might be repeated at the beginning of the following week’s notes because the earlier session-time ended prior to the notes being fully covered.

WEEK 1

PRAYER In These Times
Session 1

Greetings and welcome to what is likely a three week (which became seven) class/study/immersion/workshop/launch into Prayer.

If you’re here, you most probably already have a “prayer life”, and that is excellent. Our desire, mine included, is to go deepe, w greater understanding, purpose, focus, and anointing to pray. I am believing God for this result.

MECHANICS:
We plan to be meeting 7:00PM to 8:30PM during these sessions.
We plan to be spending time PRAYING during these sessions – likely NOT extended periods of time, but times during or after which we can and might well discuss HOW and WHAT and WHY we prayed, and how we might feel we did as a group. Practice does make for Improvement, even if not for Perfection. My vision for these sessions, besides them being a biblical study, is for them to be a workshop to bring us into group prayer. PRACTICE PRAYER is PRAYER, and we can expect God to show up when we pray.

NOTES: My notes are very readable (but with typos, etc. – because they are NOTES for me, firstgeothermal ought to be available in many places: getting me your READABLE email address and is good – via FB post, or at www.ez3728.com. Re: the format of my notes. BOLD and WORDS in COLOR are pointers FOR ME, as I speak. They aren’t necessarily more important or more anything, other than points I don’t want to miss – either to speak out, or else as a turn of direction. PLEASE know these are my notes for speaking.

As I prepare for a teaching class, my notes are typically “streaming” in that they are ongoing and then we see where we get to by the end of an evening. What is not covered LIKELY gets covered the following session. Or maybe not. I am trying to be sensitive to the Lord in His leading. So when I send out notes in advance, only know that those are my notes as of the time I am sending them out. You likely will get more notes than what will be covered in any session, or even in all sessions. And some of what gets spoken during a session might not be in my notes. Blessed are the flexible – that includes both you, and me.

NKJV – I LOVE LOVE LOVE the New King James Bible. Use whichever translation you like, though. Likely, 100% of my notes and teaching will be out of the NKJV.

DISCLAIMER: As always – I am teaching from a place of my own biblical understanding, and my own experiences in prayer. I am not close to perfect, but I want to stay to the One IS perfect. My own prayer life has struggles, challenges, distractions, all that and more. I have succeed in prayer, I have failed in my prayer calling at times. By His grace, I can say I have not missed a day of pray or being in the word, for 43 years. But some days, and some seasons, are better than others. I am LEARNING THIS AS I GO FORWARD. But PLEASE never think all that I am telling you in how I live my life. I wish it was so. I’m going hard after God – but I am never speaking or ministering from a place of “having arrived”.

LET’S PRAY. How appropriate.

OK – Welcome. We’re beginning a series that. Lord willing, be more than a teaching – although of course there’s nothing wrong w a “teaching”.

1. The VISION for these sessions is that we will become more awake and aware to the CALL TO PRAYER, The OPPORTUNITY and OPEN DOOR to PRAYER, and the more CRITICAL NEED for PRAYER – even now more than ever.

We also want to study and learn and gain faith from BIBLICAL MODELS and the BIBLICAL REVELATIONS of prayer.

We know we want our prayer time to be effective, and we also know that God wants our prayer time to be effective.

When you think about it, we came into relationship w our God through prayer. When someone is ready to get saved, to repent, to accept their Lord and Savior, we lead them INTO PRAYER.
It is a DIVINE HIGHWAY between TWO WORLDS – the spiritual world and the physical world.
It is the primary means by which WE COMMUNICATE W GOD, and how GOD COMMUNICATES W US.

Our God SPOKE the world into existence, and He continues to speak. HOW He speaks is His sovereign decision – He can use anything from a sunset or a numerical sequence, BUT most often, in the scriptures, we are shown a God who speaks intimately w man, one on one, during and through prayer.

Some scriptures re the END OF THIS AGE, and THE DECEPTIONS THAT WILL BE PROMINENT, and the SANCTIFICATION PROCESS (biblically, as it applies to FOOD – what we take into our bodies) – but also, I believe, these verses can rightfully be regarded as a confirmation of the PROPHETIC POWER of the WORD OF GOD and PRAYER:

1 Tim 4:1-7
1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons (and now we see things that will try to come INTO THE FAITH),
2 speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,
3 forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.
4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving;
5 for it is sanctified by (a) the word of God and (b) prayer.
6 If you instruct the brethren in these things, you will be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished in the words of faith and of the good doctrine which you have carefully followed.
7 But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness.

So we see some key components of RELIGIOUS SPIRITS that will be present in the latter times” to try to (and in many instances SUCCEED in) deceiving the church – adding laws and rules, getting goofy, even restricting the saints from the fullness of their lives in God.

But Paul tells Timothy that THINGS (in this case: FOOD – which also represents our SURVIVAL and SUSTENANCE) are sanctified – redeemed and re-established for holy purpose – by TWO KEY KINGDOM COMPONENTS: The Word of God and Prayer.
Those two, together, aligned, and handled wisely, will cause us to be abundant and full and complete in our God, and in His plans. The Word of God AND Prayer are two components of faith we want to press into, together.

THE WORD OF GOD AND PRAYER – The scriptures are the very best place to:
Study PRAYER, to
Mature in our PRAYER; and to even be
Launched into the calling of PRAYER – I believe there’s such a thing.

Pastor Daniel wisely understands that all churches can’t do all things or be all things to a community. But one thing many of us are in agreement over – we are called to be a church that prays and prays.
(QUITE FRANKLY – I don’t how ANY church can be as effective as it ought to be if it does NOT pray – but we’ll plan to cover that as well during these weeks).

2. THE PLAN is that we move in this direction for a few weeks (3, most likely) and then go on to another teaching series – although since I am planning to be the guy doing the teaching series, I do not want to restrict or limit what the Lord might be doing in THESE sessions, so let’s agree to see what His timing is.

ONE THING I KNOW – the further I dig into the TOPIC of PRAYER – the more I personally uncover BIBLICALLY as well as EXPERIENTIALLY. So three weeks might not do it for us.

3. THE PROCESS – Typically, when I’m teaching THROUGH scripture, the teaching is progressive – one chapter, then another, then another – Like the Isaiah Apocalypse class, or the Ezekiel 33-39 class a few years back. It won’t be that way this time around. We’ll likely be all over the place, all the time. The GLUE is our topic: “The PRIORITY OF PRAYER IN THESE TIMES”. I don’t want to blame God for wild meanderings through Scripture, but I do plan to go where I think the Lord wants us to go in the topical CLASS. Speaking of which:

4. THE “CLASS”, and other SEMANTICS – Although I plan for this to be, in some ways, a workshop as much as ME teaching, I’m calling it a CLASS, simply for simplicity sake. It’s a good catch-all for me to speak, and to type. Also……

5. SOME BLURRY LINES – One might want to question “what is the difference between PRAYER and WORSHIP?”. That is a great question – and I’ll try to answer it simply, right here. I BELIEVE that PRAYER is an act of WORSHIP, and also that WORSHIP can be an act of PRAYER. I think it is a blurry line, that we can cross freely, back and forth. I don’t see the scriptures carving out territories-of-definition for either, so we won’t. PRAYER can include MUSIC and WORDS can be expressed in SONG. At the same time, WORSHIP can include WORDS THAT DON’T RHYME – that are functionally PRAYERS TO GOD.

We want to not get more religious about drawing DEFINITION-LINES than the scriptures do.
PERSONALLY – I am enjoying, and finding myself going deeper in GOD, by often praying WHILE I am reading the Word of God. I am not ALWAYS stopping ONE to begin THE NEXT. Things are usually different when we’re in PRAYER MEETINGS, rather than alone w God in prayer, but that is something else we’ll address.

GO W THE FLOW OF GOD in all this. It will bless you, and loosen you up to enjoy your time w Him.

6. ROCK PILE PRAYER – Mike Bickle, founder and head of the International House of Prayer – sometimes talks about “rock pile prayer” – where you feel you are simply swinging the heavy hammer, maybe not making a lot of progress, often in dry and tough place. I believe SOME of that ROCK PILE might be GOD HIMSELF, testing what you’re made out of, and how diligent and determined you are. I also believe that MUCH of that ROCK PILE is our own religiosity – and that a lot of the ENJOYMENT and JOY of being in His presence is taken from us when we set up formulas and parameters and rules for our prayer time that are not necessarily biblical.
THIS VERSE is actually revealed to us within the context of a resurrected state – but I believe the truth of the verse is for us, NOW:
Ps 16:11 (NOT an overhead)
11 You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

7. TEACHING PRAYER – One thing I want us to understand, early, is that there is little IF ANY “teaching prayer” in scripture. Often in scripture we will see great people of God RECITING back to God, and/or proclaiming aloud things that God has already promised in His word, or His characteristics – slow to anger, etc. THAT IS GOOD AND FINE.

But oftentimes we will find PEOPLE, IN PRAYER MEETINGS, thinking they are praying but actually utilizing the opportunity to try to TEACH to other people in the room. Nor do we need to teach God. It ain’t prayer. So WE WANT TO BE AWARE OF THIS usually well-intended error, and avoid it, even during this class. It one of those “what prayer isn’t” kind of things.

THINGS I WOULD LIKE TO COVER:

What is prayer?
What is effectual (per James) prayer?
What isn’t prayer?
How to pray
When to pray
Why pray
Prayer with the understanding of our minds
Holy Spirit led prayer in a heavenly language – when and where and why
Praying according to the will of God
Why we have a hard time getting to prayer and staying in prayer
How God is motivating us and teaching us to prayer
How to be successful in prayer
Examples/Models of praying people and their prayer-effectiveness
Praying the Psalms – personalizing them
The Psalmist, King David, and his prayer model
What God’s immutable word tells us about prayer
The supernatural component of prayer.
(The witness of the Spirit that confirms and directs prayer proclamation: like ezekiel’s dry bones prayer and Elijah’s Baal-prophet prayer and challenge)

I would like to be able to tell you that we will be covering the above topics point by point. But we will not. I am all over this list, but if/when we might get to any or some of these points, feel free to check them off your own do-list if you want.

WE WILL BE PRAYING IN THESE SESSIONS, AND MANY OF THOSE TIMES WE WILL BE DISCUSSING HOW WE ARE PRAYING – NOT to learn some “official church FORMAT” but to broaden our understanding and awareness as to how we can be more effective in our prayer.

WAY-EARLY TRUTH AND REVELATION FOR US:
Gen 3:8-10
8 And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.
9 Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?”
10 So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.”

Notably – it appears this was the IDYLLIC MODEL of God interacting w man – HIM coming to US, and WE being naked before Him, but being OK w that. In reality, THAT is how He wants to be w us now – not necessarily in THE PHYSICAL (that’s YOUR personal call) – and of course NEVER in the group prayer meetings – but the CONCEPT is that God sees and knows all.
And from THAT PLACE of understanding, it ought to change our perspective as to what we address w God, or what we might (vainly) attempt to hide from God.

CONFIRMED in the NT, and also brought to light so we can understand not only our accountability but also our access to God (THE PLACE OF PRAYER BEING ONE OF THE GREATEST ACCESS AVENUES) – the writer of Hebrews tells us this:

Heb 4:8-16
8 For if Joshua had given them rest, then He would not afterward have spoken of another day.
9 There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.
10 For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.
11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.
12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked (like Adam) and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.
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 (W CONFIDENCE OF ACCEPTANCE) to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (often the time when our Adversary “Satan” would want to present you as disqualified – in time of spiritual need, or even failure – from coming into the presence of God.

THE WARFARE of PRAYER and the WARFARE against PRAYER: As I mentioned early in a write-up email – during the weeks leading up to this class, I have found myself in some crazy and dark places, EVEN DURING my prayer time. I believe it was spiritual warfare specifically against this teaching, but also I believe the Lord allowed this to reveal my own vulnerability and weakness, as well as some of the places we will go through, as brethren. WE ARE IN A BATTLE. But we win. AND/BUT we need to be praying fervently to win. Prayer is a weapon of our warfare, and for us to NOT anticipate warfare resisting our prayer, would be naïve.

We’re promised this (we’ll read the entire verse 16, later):
James 5:16
16 ……The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
(THEN THE EXAMPLE)

This too is MODELED FOR US: things happen IN DIRECT RESPONSE TO PRAYER:
Isa 38:1-6
1 In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, “Thus says the LORD: ‘Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live.'”
2 Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the LORD,
3 and said, “Remember now, O LORD, I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what is good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
4 And the word of the LORD came to Isaiah, saying,
5 “Go and say to Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of David your father: “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will add to your days fifteen years.
6 “I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria, and I will defend this city.”‘

This is MODELED FOR US by Jesus – His anointing and success did not get in the way of His prayer life:

Luke 5:15-16
15 However, the report went around concerning Him all the more; and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities.
16 So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.

MORE OF THE JESUS-MODEL (His Organizational Instructions came FROM (not FOR) Dad. His understanding of what to do and who to call came from Dad):
Luke 6:12-20
12 Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.
AFTER ALL-NIGHT PRAYER: THE CALLING OF HIS FIRST TWELVE FOUNDING MEMBERS OF THE FAITH:
13 And when it was day, He called His disciples to Himself; and from them He chose twelve whom He also named apostles:
14 Simon, whom He also named Peter, and Andrew his brother; James and John; Philip and Bartholomew;
15 Matthew and Thomas; James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called the Zealot;
16 Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot who also became a traitor.
AFTER ALL-NIGHT PRAYER: HIS HEALING ANOINTING OVER THE SPIRITUAL AND THE DEMONIC:
17 And He came down with them and stood on a level place with a crowd of His disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem, and from the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear Him and be healed of their diseases,
18 as well as those who were tormented with unclean spirits. And they were healed.
AFTER ALL-NIGHT PRAYER: HIS EVANGELISM SUCCESS:
19 And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.
AFTER ALL-NIGHT PRAYER: HIS TEACHING AND PREACHING ANOINTING:
20 Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.”

This same APPRECIATION OF THE PRAYER PRIORITY was modeled by the church fathers, resulting in the successful foundation of the church:

Acts 6:1-7
1 Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a murmuring against the Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution.
2 Then the twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables.
3 “Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business;
4 “but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”
5 And the saying pleased the whole multitude. And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch,
6 whom they set before the apostles; and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them.
THE RESULT:
7 Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.

week two……..

Good Models are for us:

This is TOLD TO US – by Paul:
1 Cor 11:1
1 Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.,,,,,

PAUL AGAIN:
1Thes 5:16-22
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray without ceasing,
18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
20 Do not despise prophecies.
21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.
22 Abstain from every form of evil.

PAUL AGAIN
Eph 6:17-19
17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;
18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints–
19 and for me (intercessory prayer for those at the tip of the spear), that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel,

A GLORIOUS TRUTH: IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO COUNTERFEIT having spent time w God
Acts 4:10-14. (Peter)
10 “let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.
11 “This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’
12 “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.
14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.

JEALOUS/ZEALOUS (qana) God is jealous for those who are His. He MARKS THEM (like Moses, when he came down from the mountain and his face shown.
There is no “pretending” or “making believe” that someone has spent time w Jesus. It in fact ends up looking silly, religious or worse:

FIRST – AN EXAMPLE OF THE “WORSE” – getting into the deep issues of the Kingdom, without being in the deep place of relationship w God:
Acts 19:13-18
13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.”
14 Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so.
15 And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?”
16 Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
18 And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds.

Revival will bring in the demonized for deliverance.

Matt 23:5-8 – Jesus – speaking of the hypocrisy of the Pharisees – who so wanted to look the part of religious men:
5 “But all their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments.
6 “They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues,
7 “greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’
8 “But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren.

KEY REVELATION RE PRAYER – BY OUR LORD – and Looking at how NOT to pray, and then HOW to pray and WHAT to say (NOT as ROTE [stiff formula] – but as EXAMPLE)

Matt 6:5-3 (Parallel to Luke 6)– after telling us how eternally worthless all our good acts are, if they are being done so other people can know about them – Jesus tells us:
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. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
6 “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.
7 “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
9 “In this manner, therefore, pray: our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
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.

Matt 6 is amazing in that we’re told be our Lord that the religious hypocrites like prayer because, when they’re seen praying, it makes them look religious. His response is NOT for His true disciples to NOT pray, but to PRAY PROPERLY, w the proper motives, w humility, and in such a manner that we are exalting and praising God, acknowledging and repenting of our sins, and then crying out for HIS will to be accomplished on earth – especially in OUR LIVES.

The FORMAT of “The Lord’s Prayer” is also a spectacular model for us when we pray:
1. Beginning w exaltation and praise.
2. Acknowledging our human condition of sinfulness, and addressing that by way of repentance.
3. Surrender to, and request for, His will.
4. Supplication and request.
5. Conclusive acknowledgement of His kingdom and power and glory.
AMEN.

(PRACTICE: PARAPHRASE OF THAT MODEL?)

Of course, in a car going over a cliff: “YOW! HELP ME LORD!” is a perfect prayer model.
But I do believe there’s a purpose and an effect, if/when conditions allow, for us to GENERALLY be praying along the lines of the Lord’s prayer.

– Picture picking up a phone, not saying hi, not acknowledging the person, and immediately asking for things. How’s that sound?
– Picture coming before the Lord of heaven and earth and doing likewise.

IMPORTANT TO THE LORD’S PRAYER IS THIS: We are told to offer to God OUR wills, and replace OUR wills w what we receive by revelation, and by circumstance, in HIS will.

Ps 118 says it this way:

Ps 118:24-29
24 This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
25 Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity.
26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD.
27 God is the LORD, and He has given us light; bind the sacrifice with cords to the horns of the altar.
28 You are my God, and I will praise You; you are my God, I will exalt You.
29 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.

V27 – He has illuminated HIS PURPOSES and HIS PLAN to US. Our offering to Him is something alive, that does NOT want to remain on the altar. I firmly believe that is best modeled as OUR WILLS.

Back to Matthew 6 for a moment – that verse comes RIGHT AFTER – yep – Matt 5 – where our Lord tells us not ONE JOT or TITTLE of the LAW (nomos) will pass away until ALL THINGS are fulfilled – He is confirming the fullness of ALL SCRIPTURE – and THEN He continues in the next chapter – which was NOT a “NEXT CHAPTER” in His teaching that day, but instead a continuation of thought and word – and tells us HOW TO PRAY and WHAT TO PRAY throughout the entire age – so us PRAYING:
“Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” – is actually THE GATES (of Ps 24) opening up so that the (plans of) the King of Glory might come in. I firmly believe that Prayer of the Saints is one of the gates through which the presence of God comes in.

OUR PRAYERS are the GATEWAY for the PLANS OF GOD to be accomplished on earth. It’s precisely what the book of Revelation tells us in chapter 5:

Rev 5:8-10 – WHERE WE GET THE TERMINOLOGY: HARP & BOWL
8 Now when He (JESUS THE LAMB) had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
9 And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.”

I also believe we would be more effective IN PRAYER and even IN LIFE, were we to spend less time NEGOTIATING W GOD and telling Him OUR WILLS, and instead seeking out HIS will and how to live that out.

A word from the brother of Jesus – we read v16 earlier – but context is always good:
James 5:14-20
14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.
16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
THE EXAMPLE:
17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.
19 Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back,
20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.

James 5 speak to all sorts of things – from brethren falling away and our humble but proactive restoration of those fallen-away brethren, to a relationship, SOMETIMES, to sin and sickness, to the promise the FERVENCY is our prayer will accomplish supernatural results.

Merriam Webster Dictionary tell us
PRAYER:
1a. An address (as a petition) to God (or a god) in word or in thought.
1B. An earnest request or wish.
2. The act or practice of praying.

Also – one who prays. A supplicant
ORIGIN: Medieval Latin (14th century) “Precarius” – obtained by entreaty

YES we also get the word PRECARIOUS from Precarius. It too is dependent upon the “will of another” – typical implied meaning being the “will” of an unknown condition….
(16th century)

EARLIER than the Greek language, though, is the HEBREW – TEPILA (prayer) and PALAL – intercede, make supplication, thought, judgment, intervene, mediate.

THE NEED TO BE PRAYING NOW: In case you are living under a rock, we are living in increasingly more and more perilous times. The issue is really not WHY we are living in these perilous times – we’ve covered that in depth in the Isaiah Apocalypse study, and several others that we’ve been through in the past years – and we’ll likely get into a LITTLE of that in this class, as well as subsequent classes.

I firmly believe we are living in increasingly more and more trying, and even perilous times according to the purposes and timing and intentions of our sovereign God, Who kindly told us the following:

Hag 2:6-9
6 “For thus says the LORD of hosts: “Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land;
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

So we see there is PROMISE that there will be a ONE TIME shaking work to draw men to the Desire of the Nations. That DESIRE would be the Lord Jesus, the soon and coming King.

Interestingly, prophetic biblical words like we just read in Haggai are NON-NEGOTIABLE. This is why silly doctrines like us SHIFTING THE BIBLICAL PLANS OF GOD by our prayers is goofy. Lots of what is coming into the church – often by good HUMAN INTENTION but IN BIBLICAL IGNORANCE in these days are doctrines that DEFY SCRIPTURE. They will not work, and in reality the preaching and teaching and praying into things that clearly contradict scriptural truth, are a waste of time. And Paul told us in Ephesians NOT to waste TIME but to redeem it.

BIBLICAL SUPPORT re non-negotiable plans of God:
Isa 14:24-27
24 The LORD of hosts has sworn, saying, “Surely, as I have thought, so it shall come to pass, and as I have purposed, so it shall stand:
25 That I will break the Assyrian in My land, and on My mountains tread him underfoot. Then his yoke shall be removed from them, and his burden removed from their shoulders.
26 This is the purpose that is purposed against the whole earth, and this is the hand that is stretched out over all the nations.
27 For the LORD of hosts has purposed, and who will annul it? His hand is stretched out, and who will turn it back?”

This is why praying CONTRARY TO THE WILL OF GOD will accomplish nothing, btw – another reason why it’s great to have the word of God in you.

We want to pray according to scripture.
THIS IS WHY it if foolhardy to think: “I’M A WORSHIPPER, I DON’T NEED TO KNOW MY BIBLE”, or “I’M A TEACHER, I DON’T NEED TO GET INVOLVED IN HARP AND BOWL WORSHIP”.
We need THE WHOLE ENCHILADA. We need all of God and all of His purposes.

There are many examples of men and women of God coming before God w PETITIONS and PLEAS, and God relenting (turning back) from a plan He had earlier expressed for a particular person, or even a particular nation. THAT TRUTH remains.
But there are PROPHETIC REVELATIONS of the plans of God that will not be turned back, and this is why our KNOWLEDGE OF SCRIPTURE will increase our EFFECTIVENESS IN PRAYER.

ALIGNING OURSELVES W THE PLANS OF GOD is something BI-DIRECTIONAL. God WANTS US to understand His plans – both via scripture and via revelation – oftentimes revealed IN THE PLACE of PRAYER – so we want to come into that fullness.

I’m sure you’ve heard your brethren PRAY GOOFY. I’m sure you’ve probably PRAYED GOOFY. Sometimes I marvel at God’s patience w us. In fact, always.

God is so amazing that in Isa 1 – even AFTER He has pronounced His people Israel GUILTY in a courtroom-like judgment, He tells them:
“COME LET US REASON TOGETHER….”
That is amazing grace. After the clear pronouncement of guilt, gracious God is still offering dialogue to His people.

Prayer wants to be a DIALOGUE, not simply a WISH LIST or a NEEDS LIST.

PRAYING ACCURATELY – according to the will of God and the revealed truths of scripture:
We will see later that King Solomon, when he dedicated the great temple to God and prayed and put forth a HUGE DOCTRINAL STAEMENT to God – ends up receiving back from God:
A. Not ONE WORD of doctrinal correction, but instead
B. A confirmation of the accuracy and truthfulness of his prayer by a powerful outpouring of the presence and glory of God – that was so intense nothing more could be done that day by the priests. It was a dog pile of priests in their priestly robes.

I believe that the PLACE OF ACCURATE PRAYER both IS and WILL CONTINUE TO BE a place of His manifold weighty CHABAD glory. Personally, I am a junkie for that (His presence), and that is ONE (of many) reasons I love to pray.

OK – reading Solomon’s amazing prayer and it’s result: the interruptive presence of God (I wasn’t going to go here NOW, but in this preparation – I’m on it):

This prayer is profound for many reasons:
It clearly reveals biblical doctrinal accuracy, and because of that, it is particularly effectual.
The result is one of the greatest manifestation-responses of God in all of scripture.
So it can teach us doctrinal truth, and it ought to encourage us to, as much as possible, come before God with an understanding of who God is and what He is doing, so that our prayers can be in alignment w His will.

2 Chr 6:14-42
14 and he (SOLOMON) said: “LORD 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.
16 “Therefore, LORD God of Israel, now keep what You promised Your servant David my father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man sit before Me on the throne of Israel, only if your sons take heed to their way, that they walk in My law as you have walked before Me.’
17 “And now, O LORD God of Israel, let Your word come true, which You have spoken to Your servant David.
18 “But will God indeed dwell with men on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You. How much less this temple which I have built!
19 “Yet regard the prayer of Your servant and his supplication, O LORD my God, and listen to the cry and the prayer which Your servant is praying before You:
20 “that Your eyes may be open toward this temple day and night, toward the place where You said You would put Your name, that You may hear the prayer which Your servant prays toward this place.
21 “And may You hear the supplications of Your servant and of Your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and when You hear, forgive.
22 “If anyone sins against his neighbor, and is forced to take an oath, and comes and takes an oath before Your altar in this temple,
23 “then hear from heaven, and act, and judge Your servants, bringing retribution on the wicked by bringing his way on his own head, and justifying the righteous by giving him according to his righteousness.
24 “Or if Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, and return and confess Your name, and pray and make supplication before You in this temple,
25 “then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of Your people Israel, and bring them back to the land which You gave to them and their fathers.
26 “When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, when they pray toward this place and confess Your name, and turn from their sin because You afflict them,
27 “then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of Your servants, Your people Israel, that You may teach them the good way in which they should walk; and send rain on Your land which You have given to Your people as an inheritance.
28 “When there is famine in the land, pestilence or blight or mildew, locusts or grasshoppers; when their enemies besiege them in the land of their cities; whatever plague or whatever sickness there is;
29 “whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by anyone, or by all Your people Israel, when each one knows his own burden and his own grief, and spreads out his hands to this temple:
30 “then hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive, and give to everyone according to all his ways, whose heart You know (for You alone know the hearts of the sons of men),
31 “that they may fear You, to walk in Your ways as long as they live in the land which You gave to our fathers.
32 “Moreover, concerning a foreigner, who is not of Your people Israel, but who comes from a far country for the 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, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to You, that all peoples of the earth may know Your name and fear You, as do Your people Israel, and that they may know that this temple which I have built is called by Your name.
34 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemies, wherever You send them, and when they pray to You toward this city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name,
35 “then hear from heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause.
36 “When they sin against You (for there is no one who does not sin), and You become angry with them and deliver them to the enemy, and they take them captive to a land far or near;
37 “yet when they come to themselves in the land where they were carried captive, and repent, and make supplication to You in the land of their captivity, saying, ‘We have sinned, we have done wrong, and have committed wickedness’;
38 “and when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their captivity, where they have been carried captive, and pray toward their land which You gave to their fathers, the city which You have chosen, and toward the temple which I have built for Your name:
39 “then hear from heaven Your dwelling place their prayer and their supplications, and maintain their cause, and forgive Your people who have sinned against You.
40 “Now, my God, I pray, let Your eyes be open and let Your ears be attentive to the prayer made in this place.
41 “Now therefore, arise, O LORD God, to Your resting place, you and the ark of Your strength. Let Your priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let Your saints rejoice in goodness.
42 “O LORD God, do not turn away the face of Your Anointed; remember the mercies of Your servant David.”

Although this pray is LENGTHY and DOCTRINAL – this is NOT “TEACHING PRAYER” – first of all, no one is teaching God. Second, Solomon is proclaiming the truths of scripture, and the personality of God.
We want to be careful that we are not PLANNING to TEACH, or LECTURE our prayer partners, when we come to the place of prayer.
TEACH when it is time to teach. PRAY when it is time to pray.

2 Chr 7:1-3
1 When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the 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.
3 When all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD on the temple, they bowed their faces to the ground on the pavement, and worshiped and praised the LORD, saying: “For He is good, for His mercy endures forever.”

THAT is a successful prayer that moved HEAVEN into EARTH.
Solomon prayed ACCURATELY, WITH PASSION, AND WITH ANOINTED PURPOSE.
THAT is what we are looking for!!!

(we’ll continue w this PRAYER-IGNITED EVENT, later – when God comes to Solomon and offers HIM, and US, the promise of IF MY PEOPLE WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME……come and pray, then God will do His work.)

BTW – it is theologically illogical and unwise to understand the TRUTHS that Solomon prayed, and then ignore them, but then try to invoke the promises of God that were spoken IN RESPONSE to Solomon’s prayer.
THIS WHOLE BOOK WORKS TOGETHER.
Just like God Himself, the word of God is ECHAD. It is ONE, PRIMERO, UNIFIED, COMPLETE, INDIVISIBLE, SET APART, UNIQUE.
Slicing and dicing it for our purposes, whether IN PRAYER or IN LIFE, is a waste of time, and a huge jeopardy.

WOW – we could spend a month is the above verses – discussing their eternal truth – their modeling of beginning prayer w praise, the honest address of sin issues, the warfare, the invitation of God to tabernacle, and more. Yea God!

I believe that prayer of Solomon confirms the glory and the potency of scripturally accurate prayer. This is why we want the word of God in us, so that when we pray, that same word can flow from us, accurately. And our prayers will be more effective because we are praying along the lines of truth. And when we pray along those lines, I believe we are invited to “hold” God to His promises.

One thing I pray frequently, when I pray for our nation.
I KNOW IT IS A PROMISE OF SCRIPTURE, AND I KNOW I NOT “STRETCHING IT” FOR MY PURPOSES – SO I CAN PRAY IT W CONFIDENCE OF ITS ACCURACY.
Psalm 125:1-3
1 Those who trust in the Lord
Are like Mount Zion,
Which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
2 As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
So the Lord surrounds His people
From this time forth and forever.
3 For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
On the land allotted to the righteous,
Lest the righteous reach out their hands to iniquity.

It’s good to understand this Psalm, so it can be prayed effectively.
At first blush, it looks like it is ABOUT Mount Zion in Jerusalem – but it is not. The promise is way broader than that. It says THOSE – any people group, anywhere who trust in the Lord will be LIKE (equivalent to, seen by God as) Mount Zion – and that becomes unmovable.
Then verse assures that IN LIKE MANNER AS HOW GOD SURROUNDS JERUSALEM – He will surround that group who trust in Him – and that is a “forevermore” promise.
Then verse 3 – which is pregnant w promise, tells us that a covenant land can gain access to a place of rescue and deliverance because – if we’re reading the Word – we know God is CANA over His people, all around the world.

THAT IS WHY we want the Word in us, and understood by us – so that our prayers can be most effective.

BACK TO HAGGAI (which we read earlier) and the SHAKING-WORK PROMISE: Further to the SAME prophetic word is another PROMISE TO BE FULFILLED: God will fill His temple with glory – as we also just saw in the Solomon-temple-dedication bunny trail. There appears to be a distinct relationship between PRAYER, THE PRESENCE OF GOD, AND THE FILLING WITH GLORY:

And the further revelation is that the “glory of the latter temple shall be greater than the former”.

Hag 2:7-9
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

Isaiah further tells us the FULFILLED TEMPLE is going to be a certain kind of place – accessible to Jew and Gentile alike – this is the temple the Lord is preparing us for right now:

Isa 56:1-7
1 Thus says the LORD: “Keep justice, and do righteousness, for My salvation is about to come, and My righteousness to be revealed.
2 Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who lays hold on it; who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and keeps his hand from doing any evil.”
3 Do not let the son of the foreigner who has joined himself to the LORD speak, saying, “The LORD has utterly separated me from His people”; nor let the eunuch say, “Here I am, a dry tree.”
4 For thus says the LORD: “To the eunuchs who keep My Sabbaths, and choose what pleases Me, and hold fast My covenant,
5 Even to them I will give in My house and within My walls a place and a name better than that of sons and daughters; I will give them an everlasting name that shall not be cut off.
6 “Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants– everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant–
7 Even them I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”

God’s great plan has ONE age coming to an end, and THE NEXT age immediately following, like DAY follows NIGHT.
That NEXT AGE is going to see a rebuilt temple, filled with people who:
KNOW TO PRAY; and also
KNOW HOW TO PRAY

What we are seeing in these and many other prophetic verses is an IMAGE OF THE PURPOSES OF GOD at the END of THIS AGE, and then extending into the NEXT AGE.

Furthermore, and critical for our understanding of the PRIORITY OF PRAYER is this amazing fact that ought to ignite our understanding of
our WORTH,
our POSITION,
our CALLING and
our PARTNERSHIP into the CREATION PLAN OF GOD – first remembering that mankind screwed things up, royally, for all of creation, when Adam and Eve opened the door to sin, through disobedience, in the Garden, and then understanding and recognizing the glorious restoration and redemption work of the cross, so that promises like we just read can be obtained, as we walk in understanding and holiness, humility and prayer.

CRITICAL NT REVELATION as to God’s prophetic plan – that WILL SURELY come to pass.
This is His plan for His people:
Rom 8:14-28
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
17 and if children, then heirs– heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.
18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God.
20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope;
21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.
23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.
24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees?
25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.
26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
(BUT HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS RE THE EFFECTIVENESS AND POTENTIAL OF HOLY-SPIRIT INFUSED PRAYER: We don’t really need to know all the things we need to be praying for, nor HOW to pray for some of them – because the Holy Spirit, IN US, is in complete harmony with the purposes of heaven, and HE KNOWS how we ought to be praying. He wants to pray FOR YOU THROUGH YOU)
27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
AND THEN WE GET THE “ALL THINGS….” PROMISE VERSE – within this context of Holy-Spirit infused, Spirit led life:
28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Back to v22: For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.

The CREATION itself, groaning under the burden of a seasonal spiritual climate, is alive and infused with an understanding that SOMETHING has to change.
That change will not be a work OF Man.
And yet God, in calling us into a place of partnership with Him, has ordained it to be a work BY Man, praying as he ought to pray, led by the Spirit, OBEDIENTLY but also CREATIVELY speaking into being the plans and purposes of God.

LIKELY WEEK TWO will be begin by looking into the “controversial” scriptures of 1 Cor 12-14 regarding praying in tongues, speaking in tongues, the public prophetic purpose of tongues, the potential of praying in tongues, and the religious warfare and rantings AGAINST praying tongues.

FOR NOW, SUFFICE TO SAY – Jesus put this priority on being filled with the Holy Spirit, and then Acts 2 HAPPENED:
ACTS 2
4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me;
5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

AND THEN:
Acts 2
1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

These were fully saved saints, and Jesus told them to do nothing until they were baptized by a baptism of fire, after which time they’d be empowered for the Kingdom work. And when that occurred, it was marked by the outpouring of the gift and sign of tongues.

Prayer is the highest calling of God for a man to walk in. He is looking for those who will “worship Him in spirit and in truth”.

Dictionary Definition, again
WORSHIP: The act of showing respect and love for a God especially by PRAYING WITH OTHER PEOPLE who believe in the same god; the act of worshipping God or a god.

That WORSHIP includes the active component of prayer. Worship and Prayer are inseparable.

I believe it is one reason why sometimes worship fails to attain its full potential – because worshippers (onstage and off) may not be coming into the place of worship, prayed up.

THE RESISTANCE TO OUR PRAYERS, and our PRAYING:
So what we need to realize is that Satan (Hebrew: “Adversary”) rages against prayer and worship. It is his worst nightmare – a praying, worshipping saint.

Look what was promised to our Lord, in a lie, by Satan:

Luke 4:6-8
6 And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.
7 “Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours.”
8 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.'”

Besides that promise being a lie, it was also in complete opposition to the purpose of mankind.
We were meant for worship and prayer – only to God.
8 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.'”

This is why WE, as redeemed creatures, consistently encounter so much opposition to prayer – opposition to wanting to pray, to engage in prayer, to remain in prayer, to stay awake in prayer, and to surrender in prayer. These are all topics we’ll be INVESTIGATING, and PRACTICING, during the next few weeks.

PERSONALLY:
My wife and I grew up in a militant, revival church. We were taught to pray by the hour. Much of it was “rock pile prayer” – “watching our watches” – making sure we got our appointed time in.
The DISCIPLINE was excellence.
The PURPOSE was sort of goofy and religious.
The RESULT was that we learned to prayer.
GOD HONORS PRAYER.

Saying that, having not missed a day of prayer in 43 years (some more intense and more effective than other days, btw) – I can say that as I was preparing for this class I encountered HUGE OBSTACLES to my own prayer life – finding time to be alone with God, keeping my iphone or ipad SHUT DOWN while I prayed, maintaining a focuses while praying, having my mind wander, sometimes to the worst of places.

I’m not BLAMING GOD – but I will say I believe the Lord let me see some of the demons that would and could come upon someone who sincerely intends to become a praying person.
WE ARE IN A BATTLE THAT WON’T BE WON WITHOUT PRAYER
WE ARE IN A BATTLE TO PRAY
WE ARE IN A BATTLE WHEN WE PRAY
WE COME OUT OF PRAY EQUIPPED FOR THE BATTLE

THE PLAN is for this to be a WORKSHOP as much as a TEACHING. REMIND ME OF THAT, please, if I need to be reminded.

I sometimes go crazy over how many sermons we HEAR about PRAYER, and yet how little PRAYER is going up from the mouths and hearts of the saints. AND WE NEED TO BE PRAYING.

Some Biblical Promises – and we’re invited to remind the Lord of His promises:
A FAMOUS BIGGEE – couched in the CONTEXT of the prophetic paragraph – for clarity and emphasis:
(After the temple-dedication events we had looked at earlier – the Lord chooses to visit Solomon, alone – likely in a dream sequence – similar as to how He had appeared to him when Solomon first asked for wisdom. Ref: 1 Kings 11:9):
2 Chr 7:12-22
12 Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice.
13 “When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people,
14 “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.
16 “For now I have chosen and sanctified this house, that My name may be there forever; and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually.
17 “As for you, if you walk before Me as your father David walked, and do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments,
18 “then I will establish the throne of your kingdom, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, ‘You shall never fail to have a man as ruler in Israel.’
19 “But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods, and worship them,
20 “then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; and this house which I have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples.
21 “And as for this house, which is exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, ‘Why has the LORD done thus to this land and this house?’
22 “Then they will answer, ‘Because they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and embraced other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore He has brought all this calamity on them.'”

This 2 Chronicles promise is not a GET-OUT-OF-JAIL-FREE card. It is a CALLING CARD, with a PROMISE ATTACHED, an ACCOUTANTLY AFFIRMED, and a DIVINE THREAT ILLUSTRATED: the dismal conclusion of foolish disobedience, and prayerlessness.

God is jealous (QANA) over His people, His plans, and His purposes, and He will bring conditions upon His people, and upon a land, when they are disobedient to Him. And He offers the solution out of the mess.

This of course needs to be soberly understood within the context of His divine and sovereign plans. God is not our PRAYER-GENIE. We do not simply rub the magic lamp for Him to appear and comply. And we would do well to be filled w the presence of God, so that WHEN we pray, we are praying according to His will.
I admit that many times, prior to a prayer meeting w other folks, I try to spend time in prayer.

Look at this condition of disobedient Israel – and look at what the Lord tells Jeremiah:

Jer 11:9-14
9 And the LORD said to me, “A conspiracy has been found among the men of Judah and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
10 “They have turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers who refused to hear My words, and they have gone after other gods to serve them; the house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken My covenant which I made with their fathers.”
11 Therefore thus says the LORD: “Behold, I will surely bring calamity on them which they will not be able to escape; and though they cry out to Me, I will not listen to them.

14 “So do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not hear them in the time that they cry out to Me because of their trouble.

Jer 14:11-15
11 Then the LORD said to me, “Do not pray for this people, for their good.
12 “When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and grain offering, I will not accept them. But I will consume them by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence.”
13 Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, the prophets say to them, ‘You shall not see the sword, nor shall you have famine, but I will give you assured peace in this place.'”
14 And the LORD said to me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart.
15 “Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the prophets who prophesy in My name, whom I did not send, and who say, ‘Sword and famine shall not be in this land’–‘ By sword and famine those prophets shall be consumed!

And look what Jesus Himself reveals to us in the famous UNITY-PRAYER OF JOHN 17:
John 17:5-11
5 “And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.
6 “I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.
7 “Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You.
8 “For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me.
9 “I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.
10 “And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.
11 “Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.

Jesus Himself knew and knows the condition of the world, and therefore is interceding for the UNITY of BELIEVERS, not for the unity of the BELIEVERS to the sinful condition of the world. The world in fact is already condemned because of its sinful condition.
We of course know that the will of heaven is for all men to come to repentance – but wisdom reveals to us that Jesus’ prayer of unity is NOT a “COEXIST” Bumper Sticker.
We want to pray according to knowledge of the plans and purposes of God.

The GOSPEL MESSAGE (John 3:16) is for people to respond to the good news of a Savior and to come out of the already condemned world system.

That truth is being warred against by some of the doctrines in many churches – that things are only going to get better and better even before the return of our Lord.
1. That defies scriptural prophecy.
2. That is not what we are seeing, on our watch.

Our PRAYERS ought to be for the workers to be sent into the increasingly growing harvest, that as our Lord shakes the heavens and earth, we would be there to rescue and deliver the captives, to help them make the born-again transition from slave to freeman, where they can then take up their own SWORD OF PRAYER and WORSHIP, and join in the victorious conclusive battle.

ALL THIS HAS TO HAPPEN, and we are called and told and encouraged and charged to be praying people. And we’ll look into that.

We’re told to PRAY:
1.FOR the will of God – which the Spirit will reveal to us, either knowledgably or supernaturally (as we exercise our spiritual language of heaven).
2. ACCORDING to the will of God – the perfect model being the “Lord’s prayer” (which is really OUR prayer as well as His), and also we will look into the examples of successful prayers throughout scripture – because it is senseless to waste our time praying as some religious exercise, simply because we are told to pray. You want to “redeem your prayer time” by praying according to the will of God – as revealed in scripture and also by the Spirit, as you pray. And we can know that scriptural revelation and Holy-Spirit revelation will never contradict one another. THAT is another reason why you want to know your bible – it will make your prayer life more effective.

GOD WANTS US TO KNOW HOW TO PRAY, and to even become MORE EFFICIENT in our prayers – NOT so that we can pray LESS, but so that we can ACCOMPLISH more during our prayer times. I believe that kind of accomplishment will actually inspire us to be praying MORE, not less.

We’re going to look at silent prayer, prayer with words, prayer in the Spirit.
We’re going to look at prayer in solitude, in groups, everywhere, at all times.
We’re going to look and see how potentially unstoppable our prayers can be.

THE END OF AGE ADMONISHMENT:
1Thes 5:1-28
1 But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you.
2 For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.
3 For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape.
4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day should overtake you as a thief.
5 You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness.
6 Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.
7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night.
8 But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation.
9 For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.
11 Therefore comfort each other and edify one another, just as you also are doing.
12 And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you,
13 and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. Be at peace among yourselves.
14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all.
15 See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all.
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray without ceasing,
18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
20 Do not despise prophecies.
21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.
22 Abstain from every form of evil.
23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.
25 Brethren, pray for us.
26 Greet all the brethren with a holy kiss.
27 I charge you by the Lord that this epistle be read to all the holy brethren.
28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.

The REVELATION BOWLS and what’s to be in them:
Rev 5:6-14
6 And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth.
7 Then He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne.
8 Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
9 And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.”
11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands,
12 saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!”
13 And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying: “Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!”
14 Then the four living creatures said, “Amen!” And the twenty-four elders fell down and worshiped Him who lives forever and ever.

WE’VE LOOKED AT:
TEACH US TO PRAY – the Lord’s prayer.
JESUS PRAYING ALL NIGHT
ROMANS 8 – SPIRIT PRAYER

NOW LET’S LOOK AT:
DANIEL’S AMAZING PRAYER OF OWNING SIN OF HIS NATION – BUT NOT TAKING ANY CREDIT

Dan 9:1-23
1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the lineage of the Medes, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans–
2 in the first year of his reign I, Daniel, understood by the books the number of the years specified by the word of the LORD through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.
3 Then I set my face toward the Lord God to make request by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes.
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.
6 “Neither have we heeded Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings and our princes, to our fathers and all the people of the land.
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, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You.
9 “To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him.
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 has departed so as not to obey Your voice; therefore the curse and the oath written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against Him.
12 “And He has confirmed His words, which He spoke against us and against our judges who judged us, by bringing upon us a great disaster; for under the whole heaven such has never been done as what has been done to Jerusalem.
13 “As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us; yet we have not made our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth.
14 “Therefore the LORD has kept the disaster in mind, and brought it upon us; for the LORD our God is righteous in all the works which He does, though we have not obeyed His voice.
15 “And now, O Lord our God, who brought Your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and made Yourself a name, as it is this day– we have sinned, we have done wickedly!
16 “O Lord, according to all Your righteousness, I pray, let Your anger and Your fury be turned away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain; because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people are a reproach to all those around us.
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.
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.”
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:….

PRAYING IN THE HOLY SPIRIT – its prophetic purpose, and its prophetic SIGN to the world.
Its use and misuse and why we need to get that right.

ONCE AGAIN: JESUS SAYS TO THIS FOLLOWERS:
“DON’T DO ANYTHING UNTIL YOU GET FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT”
Acts 1:6-9
6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.
8 “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
9 Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.

THE BAD EXAMPLE – albeit with a good ending:
Acts 19:11-17
11 Now God worked unusual miracles by the hands of Paul,
12 so that even handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out of them.
13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.”
14 Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so.
15 And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?”
16 Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.

BACK TO THE INFILLING
Acts 2:1-47
1 Now when the Day of Pentecost (FIRST FRUITS) had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
5 And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.
6 And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language.
7 Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?
8 “And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?
9 “Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,
10 “Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes,
11 “Cretans and Arabs– we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.”
12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”
13 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”
14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words.
15 “For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.
16 “But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17 ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams.
18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; and they shall prophesy.
19 I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: blood and fire and vapor of smoke.
20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord.
21 And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’
22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know–
23 “Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death;
24 “whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.
25 “For David says concerning Him: ‘I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken.
26 Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; moreover my flesh also will rest in hope.
27 For You will not leave my soul in Hades, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
28 You have made known to me the ways of life; you will make me full of joy in Your presence.’
29 “Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his tomb is with us to this day.
30 “Therefore, being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ to sit on his throne,
31 “he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ, that His soul was not left in Hades, nor did His flesh see corruption.
32 “This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses.
33 “Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear.
34 “For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand,
35 Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” ‘ (QUOTING AN END-TIMES PROPHECY)
36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
39 “For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”
40 And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.”
41 Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.
42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.
43 Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.
44 Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common,
45 and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.
46 So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart,
47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.

What does Paul teach us about the warfare of Holy Spirit, tongue-talking prayer? He equates it to only ONE passage of scripture in the OT:
THE PAULINE REFERRAL TO ISAIAH 28, and then ISAIAH 28
1 Cor 12:1
1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant:

1 Cor 14:1-25
1 Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.
2 For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.
3 But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men.
4 He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church.
5 I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed he interprets, that the church may receive edification.
6 But now, brethren, if I come to you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you unless I speak to you either by revelation, by knowledge, by prophesying, or by teaching?
7 Even things without life, whether flute or harp, when they make a sound, unless they make a distinction in the sounds, how will it be known what is piped or played?
8 For if the trumpet makes an uncertain sound, who will prepare himself for battle?
9 So likewise you, unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air.
10 There are, it may be, so many kinds of languages in the world, and none of them is without significance.
11 Therefore, if I do not know the meaning of the language, I shall be a foreigner to him who speaks, and he who speaks will be a foreigner to me.
12 Even so you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel.
13 Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret.
14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.
15 What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.
16 Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not understand what you say?
17 For you indeed give thanks well, but the other is not edified.
18 I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all;
19 yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.
20 Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature.
21 In the law it is written: “With men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people; and yet, for all that, they will not hear Me,” says the Lord.
22 Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe.
23 Therefore if the whole church comes together in one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those who are uninformed or unbelievers, will they not say that you are out of your mind?
24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he is convicted by all.
25 And thus the secrets of his heart are revealed; and so, falling down on his face, he will worship God and report that God is truly among you.

AND WHAT WAS PAUL QUOTING IN V21:
21 In the law it is written: “With men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people; and yet, for all that, they will not hear Me,” says the Lord.

AND JUST AS IMPORTANTLY, WHY WOULD PAUL QUOTE THESE VERSES:
Isa 28:10-22
10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little.”
11 For with stammering lips and another tongue he will speak to this people,
12 To whom He said, “This is the rest with which you may cause the weary to rest,” and, “This is the refreshing”; yet they would not hear.
13 But the word of the LORD was to them, “Precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little,” that they might go and fall backward, and be broken and snared and caught.
14 Therefore hear the word of the LORD, you scornful men, who rule this people who are in Jerusalem,
15 Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, and with Sheol we are in agreement. When the overflowing scourge passes through, it will not come to us, for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood we have hidden ourselves.”
16 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; whoever believes will not act hastily.
17 Also I will make justice the measuring line, and righteousness the plummet; the hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters will overflow the hiding place.
18 Your covenant with death will be annulled, and your agreement with Sheol will not stand; when the overflowing scourge passes through, then you will be trampled down by it.
19 As often as it goes out it will take you; for morning by morning it will pass over, and by day and by night; it will be a terror just to understand the report.”
20 For the bed is too short to stretch out on, and the covering so narrow that one cannot wrap himself in it.
21 For the LORD will rise up as at Mount Perazim, he will be angry as in the Valley of Gibeon– that He may do His work, His awesome work, and bring to pass His act, His unusual act.
22 Now therefore, do not be mockers, lest your bonds be made strong; for I have heard from the Lord GOD of hosts, a destruction determined even upon the whole earth.

First we would do well to understand that Isaiah, the OT prophet, was looking forward to a destruction determined even upon the whole earth. That’s an HHY (Hasn’t Happened Yet). Therefore, we would be naive to think the surrounding verses would be reserved ONLY for the days of Isaiah. But more importantly, for our purposes, is the understanding that the “OTHER TONGUES” Isaiah was referring to was the army of Nebuchadnezzar, CALLED AND ASSIGNED by God to INVADE DISOBEDIENT ISRAEL, for the purposes of judgment.

Going out on a prophetic limb, which I’ve gone out on many times before – I would prayerfully proclaim I believe RABBI PAUL is understanding that the sign of TONGUES OF A FOREIGN NATION – in NT times, and as demonstrated by the Spirit led sons and daughters of God – is a sign, not to a DISOBEDIENT NATION, but instead to a DISOBEDIENT WORLD, that there is another ANOINTED KINGDOM ARMY on hand, called and appointed to invade the place of disobedience. THAT is the prophetic charge for the Spirit Filled Saints.

At the same time, godly wisdom and humility would have us understanding what PRAYER in TONGUES is for, and what it is NOT for. But of one thing I am confident: I do not believe it was ever intended by our IN YOUR FACE GOD, to be relegated to the back rooms of church, where we “do some weird Christian thing” so as to not offend anyone.

God takes Holy Spirit authority and activity seriously, and I believe it is why Jesus was so adamant about not blaspheming the Holy Spirit. The WORLD might curse Jesus and there is much grace there, but THE CHURCH is where the Holy Spirit is typically blasphemed – when biblically ignorant brethren start condemning things of God and calling them as things of darkness..

POINTS TO DISCUSS/CLOSE W:
STOPPING AND PRAYING
PRAYING WITHOUT CEASING.
INCREASING OUR PRAYER LIFE IN PREPARATION FOR UPCOMING EVENTS that will happen, because our Lord already told us they will happen.
NOT FAINTING.
BEING STUBBORN and PERSISTENT.

WEEK 2

PRAYER IN THESE TIMES
WEEK TWO – 7/7/16

My notes for THIS WEEK have been modified from what was sent out prior to last week. It goes that way. I always noted that SOME POINTS I had written to discuss LATER actually were covered last week. It just happens. And we made time for prayer last week. That was great. I want to continue doing that during these sessions.

We left off last week looking at the critical nature of the establishment of the new-born church, w all its bonafide needs, and meanwhile we see the leadership making this decision:

ACTS 6:
3 “Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business;
4 “but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”
5 And the saying pleased the whole multitude. And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch,
6 whom they set before the apostles; and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them.
THE RESULT:
7 Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.

One of the TRAPS OF URGENCY – particularly for people w responsibilities – is distraction from prayer.
And yet the scriptures illustrate SUCCESS in our SINGLE-MINDEDNESS and DETERMINATION TO PRAY.

The past few weeks I’ve become aware of several tough situations that saints find themselves in, and in several of the cases – granted from the outside looking in – but still looking in – it appears that there may have been “SPIRITUALLY MORE EFFECTIVE” decisions made and priorities established, and biblical method complied with, that likely might have resulted in better outcome. I am just saying……

PAUL said it this way:
1 Cor 11:1
1 Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ.

Paul’s admonishment to “IMITATE” comes w the understanding that the “imitate” was not a matter of doing the same DEEDS as Jesus, but instead emulating the same lifestyle of 100% desperately chasing God – in as best alignment w the word of God as possible. That will be our success.

PAUL SAYS AGAIN:
1Thes 5:16-22
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray without ceasing, ( I BELIEVE THERE’S A KEY HERE – a mind & spirit continually in dialogue w God)
18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
20 Do not despise prophecies.
21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.
22 Abstain from every form of evil.

I am of the mind that as the days get darker, the weight of this next scripture will impact us more and more:

Eph 6:11-12
11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
(Paul isn’t even talking about forward progress. Here is saying that on the darkest of days, our being fully equipped will keep us standing).

17-19
17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;
18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints–
19 and for me (intercessory prayer for those at the tip of the spear), that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel,

Part of us having CHRIST in us is coming into agreement w biblical truth – living out the scriptures in obedience and faith.
We’re called LIVING EPISTLES.
IF all the word of God is going to be in alignment, and it is, then your “anointing” to be a living epistle will have your life, your struggles, your successes and your failures, all coming into alignment w the truth of scripture. So if God wants to world to know that EPHESIANS 6 is TRUE, how can we logically anticipate success and authority in kingdom situations if we are living at a level below biblical truth?
I am so challenged by that.
ONE WAY OR THE OTHER, our lives as the people of God will confirm scripture. EXAMPLE: ISRAEL modeling covenant correction in their disobedience.

A GLORIOUS TRUTH: IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO COUNTERFEIT having spent time w God
Acts 4:10, 13
10 “let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.
11 “This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’
12 “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.

JEALOUS/ZEALOUS (qana) God is jealous for those who are His. He MARKS THEM (like Moses, when he came down from the mountain and his face shown.
There is no “pretending” or “making believe” that someone has spent time w Jesus. It in fact ends up looking silly, religious or much worse – when someone wants to FAKE Kingdom authority or anointing:

FIRST – AN EXAMPLE OF THE “MUCH WORSE” – getting into the deep issues of the Kingdom, without being in the deep place of relationship w God:
Acts 19:13-18
13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.”
14 Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so.
15 And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?”
16 Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
THE RESULT OF THEIR FAILURE STILL CONFIRMED SCRIPTURAL TRUTH – albeit to the negative
18 And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds.

KEY REVELATION RE PRAYER – BY OUR LORD – HOW to pray and WHAT to say (NOT as ROTE [not as stiff formula] – but as REPRESENTATIONAL EXAMPLE

Matt 6:5-13 (Parallel to Luke 6)– after telling us how eternally worthless all our good acts are, if they are being done so other people can know about them – Jesus tells us:
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. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
6 “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.
7 “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
9 “In this manner (HOUTOS – IN LIKE MANNER, LIKE THIS), (Luke 11:2 says “SAY” – LEGO – which means to set forth as a model. There’s OTHER WORDS Jesus would have used – in Aramaic – which would have translated into other Greek words – had He intended for us to repeat some WORD FOR WORD MEMORIZATION) therefore, pray: our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
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.

Matt 6 is amazing in that we’re told by our Lord that the religious hypocrites like prayer because, when they’re seen praying, it makes them look religious. His response is NOT for His true disciples to NOT pray, but to PRAY PROPERLY, w the proper motives, w humility, and in such a manner that we are exalting and praising God, acknowledging and repenting of our sins, and then crying out for HIS will to be accomplished on earth – especially in OUR LIVES.

The FORMAT of “The Lord’s Prayer” is also a spectacular model for us when we pray:
1. Beginning w exaltation and praise.
2. Acknowledging our human condition of sinfulness, and addressing that by way of repentance.
3. Surrender to, and request for, His will.
4. Supplication and request.
5. Conclusive acknowledgement of His kingdom and power and glory.
AMEN.

(PRACTICE PARAPHRASE OF THAT MODEL?)

ONCE AGAIN – In a car going over a cliff: “YOW! HELP ME LORD!” is a perfect prayer model.
But there’s a purpose and an effect, if/when conditions allow, for us to GENERALLY be praying along the lines of the Lord’s prayer.

– Picture picking up a phone, not saying hi, not acknowledging the person, and immediately asking for things. How’s that sound?
– Picture coming before the Lord of heaven and earth and doing likewise.

IMPORTANT TO THE LORD’S PRAYER IS THIS: We are told to offer to God OUR wills, and replace OUR wills w what we receive by revelation, and by circumstance, in His will, which will always be in alignment w scripture.

Ps 118 says it this way re: our wills –
Ps 118:24-29
24 This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
25 Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity.
26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD.
27 God is the LORD, and He has given us light; bind the sacrifice with cords to the horns of the altar.
28 You are my God, and I will praise You; you are my God, I will exalt You.
29 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.

V27 – He has illuminated HIS PURPOSES and HIS PLAN to US. Our offering to Him is something live, that on its own does NOT want to remain on the altar. I firmly believe that is best modeled as OUR WILLS.

Back to Matthew 6 for a moment – that verse comes RIGHT AFTER – yep – Matt 5 – where our Lord tells us not ONE JOT or TITTLE of the LAW (nomos) will pass away until ALL THINGS are fulfilled – He is confirming the fullness of ALL SCRIPTURE – and THEN He continues in the next chapter – which was NOT a “NEXT CHAPTER” in His teaching that day, but instead a continuation of thought and word – and tells us HOW TO PRAY and WHAT TO PRAY throughout the entire age – so us PRAYING:
“Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” – is actually AN OPENING OF THE GATES (of Ps 24) so that the (plans of) the King of Glory might come in. I firmly believe that Prayer of the Saints is one of the gates through which the presence of God comes in. It’s a healthy mindset w which to enter into prayer – praying understanding the eternal impact of our prayer activity – our investment into the plans of God.

It’s precisely what the book of Revelation tells us in chapter 5:

Rev 5:8-10 – WHERE WE GET THE TERMINOLOGY: HARP & BOWL
8 Now when He (JESUS THE LAMB) had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
9 And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.”

I also believe we would be more effective IN PRAYER and even IN LIFE, were we to spend less time NEGOTIATING W GOD and telling Him OUR WILLS, and instead seeking out HIS will and how to live that out.

GOING IN ANOTHER DIRECTION – The anointed, faith-based prayer for healing and also if necessary for forgiveness of sin – which sometimes needs to accompany healing request:
From the brother of Jesus – we read v16 earlier – but context is always good:
James 5:14-16
14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.
16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.
19 Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back,
20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.

Merriam Webster Dictionary tell us
PRAYER:
1a. An address (as a petition) to God (or a god) in word or in thought.
1B. An earnest request or wish.
2. The act or practice of praying.

Also – one who prays. A supplicant
ORIGIN: Medieval Latin (14th century) “Precarius” – obtained by entreaty

YES we also get the word PRECARIOUS from Precarius. It too is dependent upon the “will of another” – typical implied meaning being the “will” of an unknown condition….
(16th century)

EARLIER than the Greek language, though, is the HEBREW – TEPILA (prayer) and PALAL – intercede, make supplication, thought, judgment, intervene, mediate.

THE NEED TO BE PRAYING NOW: In case you are living under a rock, we are living in increasingly more and more perilous times. The issue is really not WHY we are living in these perilous times – we’ve covered that in depth in the Isaiah Apocalypse study, and several others that we’ve been through in the past years – and we’ll likely get into a LITTLE of that in this class, as well as subsequent classes.

I firmly believe we are living in increasingly more and more trying, and even perilous times according to the purposes and timing and intentions of our sovereign God, Who kindly told us the following:

Hag 2:6-9
6 “For thus says the LORD of hosts: “Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land;
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

So we see there is PROMISE that there will be a ONE TIME shaking work to draw men to the Desire of the Nations. That DESIRE would be the Lord Jesus, the soon and coming King.

Interestingly, prophetic biblical words like we just read in Haggai are NON-NEGOTIABLE. This is why silly doctrines like us SHIFTING THE BIBLICAL PLANS OF GOD by our prayers is goofy. Lots of what is coming into the church – often by good HUMAN INTENTION but IN BIBLICAL IGNORANCE in these days are doctrines that DEFY SCRIPTURE. They will not work, and in reality the preaching and teaching and praying into things that clearly contradict scriptural truth, are a waste of time. THEY ARE NOT EFFECTUAL PRAYERS, AND THEY AVAIL LITTLE IF NOTHING AT ALL.

Paul told us in Ephesians NOT to waste TIME but to redeem it.

BIBLICAL SUPPORT re non-negotiable plans of God:
Isa 14:24-27
24 The LORD of hosts has sworn, saying, “Surely, as I have thought, so it shall come to pass, and as I have purposed, so it shall stand:
25 That I will break the Assyrian in My land, and on My mountains tread him underfoot. Then his yoke shall be removed from them, and his burden removed from their shoulders.
26 This is the purpose that is purposed against the whole earth, and this is the hand that is stretched out over all the nations.
27 For the LORD of hosts has purposed, and who will annul it? His hand is stretched out, and who will turn it back?”

This is why praying CONTRARY TO THE WILL OF GOD will accomplish nothing, btw – another reason why it’s great to have the word of God in you.

We want to pray according to scripture.

There are many examples of men and women of God coming before God w PETITIONS and PLEAS, and God relenting (turning back) from a plan He had earlier expressed for a particular person, or even a particular nation. THAT TRUTH remains.

But there are PROPHETIC REVELATIONS of the plans of God that will not be turned back, and this is why our KNOWLEDGE OF SCRIPTURE will increase our EFFECTIVENESS IN PRAYER.

ALIGNING OURSELVES W THE PLANS OF GOD is BI-DIRECTIONAL. God WANTS US to understand His plans – both via scripture and via revelation:
1. RECEIVING Knowledge of His will DURING PRAYER, and also
2. PROCLAIMING and DECLARING HIS WILL IN PRAYER.

I’m sure you’ve heard your brethren PRAY GOOFY. I’m sure you’ve probably PRAYED GOOFY. I have. Sometimes I marvel at God’s patience w us. In fact, always.

PRAYING ACCURATELY – according to the will of God and the revealed truths of scripture:
We will see later that King Solomon, when he dedicated the great temple to God and prayed and put forth a HUGE DOCTRINAL STATEMENT to God – ends up receiving back from God:
A. Not ONE WORD of doctrinal correction, but instead
B. A confirmation of the accuracy and truthfulness of his prayer by a powerful outpouring of the presence and glory of God – that was so intense nothing more could be done that day by the priests. It was a dog pile of priests in their priestly robes.

I believe that the PLACE OF ACCURATE PRAYER both IS and WILL CONTINUE TO BE a place of His manifold weighty CHABAD glory. Personally, I am a junkie for that (His presence), and that is ONE (of many) reasons I love to pray.

Reading Solomon’s amazing prayer and its result: the interruptive presence of God (I wasn’t going to go here NOW, but in this preparation – I’m on it):

This prayer is profound for many reasons:
It clearly reveals biblical doctrinal accuracy, and because of that, it is particularly effectual.
The result is one of the greatest manifestation-responses of God in all of scripture.
So it can teach us doctrinal truth, and it ought to encourage us to, as much as possible, come before God with an understanding of who God is and what He is doing, so that our prayers can be in alignment w His will.

2 Chr 6:14-42
14 and he (SOLOMON) said: “LORD 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.
16 “Therefore, LORD God of Israel, now keep what You promised Your servant David my father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man sit before Me on the throne of Israel, only if your sons take heed to their way, that they walk in My law as you have walked before Me.’
17 “And now, O LORD God of Israel, let Your word come true, which You have spoken to Your servant David.
18 “But will God indeed dwell with men on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You. How much less this temple which I have built!
19 “Yet regard the prayer of Your servant and his supplication, O LORD my God, and listen to the cry and the prayer which Your servant is praying before You:
20 “that Your eyes may be open toward this temple day and night, toward the place where You said You would put Your name, that You may hear the prayer which Your servant prays toward this place.
21 “And may You hear the supplications of Your servant and of Your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and when You hear, forgive.
22 “If anyone sins against his neighbor, and is forced to take an oath, and comes and takes an oath before Your altar in this temple,
23 “then hear from heaven, and act, and judge Your servants, bringing retribution on the wicked by bringing his way on his own head, and justifying the righteous by giving him according to his righteousness.
24 “Or if Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, and return and confess Your name, and pray and make supplication before You in this temple,
25 “then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of Your people Israel, and bring them back to the land which You gave to them and their fathers.
26 “When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, when they pray toward this place and confess Your name, and turn from their sin because You afflict them,
27 “then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of Your servants, Your people Israel, that You may teach them the good way in which they should walk; and send rain on Your land which You have given to Your people as an inheritance.
28 “When there is famine in the land, pestilence or blight or mildew, locusts or grasshoppers; when their enemies besiege them in the land of their cities; whatever plague or whatever sickness there is;
29 “whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by anyone, or by all Your people Israel, when each one knows his own burden and his own grief, and spreads out his hands to this temple:
30 “then hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive, and give to everyone according to all his ways, whose heart You know (for You alone know the hearts of the sons of men),
31 “that they may fear You, to walk in Your ways as long as they live in the land which You gave to our fathers.
32 “Moreover, concerning a foreigner, who is not of Your people Israel, but who comes from a far country for the 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, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to You, that all peoples of the earth may know Your name and fear You, as do Your people Israel, and that they may know that this temple which I have built is called by Your name.
34 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemies, wherever You send them, and when they pray to You toward this city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name,
35 “then hear from heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause.
36 “When they sin against You (for there is no one who does not sin), and You become angry with them and deliver them to the enemy, and they take them captive to a land far or near;
37 “yet when they come to themselves in the land where they were carried captive, and repent, and make supplication to You in the land of their captivity, saying, ‘We have sinned, we have done wrong, and have committed wickedness’;
38 “and when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their captivity, where they have been carried captive, and pray toward their land which You gave to their fathers, the city which You have chosen, and toward the temple which I have built for Your name:
39 “then hear from heaven Your dwelling place their prayer and their supplications, and maintain their cause, and forgive Your people who have sinned against You.
40 “Now, my God, I pray, let Your eyes be open and let Your ears be attentive to the prayer made in this place.
41 “Now therefore, arise, O LORD God, to Your resting place, you and the ark of Your strength. Let Your priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let Your saints rejoice in goodness.
42 “O LORD God, do not turn away the face of Your Anointed; remember the mercies of Your servant David.”

ANOTHER POINT TO NOTE: Although Solomon’s prayer is LENGTHY and DOCTRINAL – this is NOT “TEACHING PRAYER” – first of all, no one is teaching God. Second, Solomon is proclaiming the truths of scripture, and the declaring the personality of God.

We want to be careful that we are not PLANNING to TEACH, or LECTURE our prayer partners, when we come to the place of prayer.
TEACH when it is time to teach. PRAY when it is time to pray.

GOD’S AFFIRMATION OF SOLOMON’S PRAYER:
2 Chr 7:1-2
1 When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the 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.

THAT is successful prayer that moved HEAVEN into EARTH.
Solomon prayed ACCURATELY, WITH PASSION, AND WITH ANOINTED PURPOSE.
THAT is what we are looking for!!!

(we’ll continue w this PRAYER-IGNITED EVENT, later – when God comes to Solomon and offers HIM, and US, the promise of IF MY PEOPLE WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME……come and pray, then God will do His work.)

BTW – it is theologically illogical and unwise for any saint to:
A. Understand the TRUTHS that Solomon prayed, and then
B. ignore them, and then
C. try to invoke the promises of God that were spoken IN RESPONSE to Solomon’s prayer.

THIS WHOLE BOOK WORKS TOGETHER.
Just like God Himself, the word of God is ECHAD. It is ONE, PRIMERO, UNIFIED, COMPLETE, INDIVISIBLE, SET APART, UNIQUE.
Slicing and dicing it for our purposes, whether IN PRAYER or IN LIFE, is a waste of time, and a huge jeopardy. Drives me nuts.

I believe that prayer of Solomon confirms the glory and the potency of scripturally accurate prayer. This is why we want the word of God in us, so that when we pray, that same word can flow from us, accurately. And our prayers will be more effective because we are praying along the lines of truth. And when we pray along those lines, I believe we are invited to “hold” God to His promises.
Week three

One thing I pray frequently, when I pray for our nation.
I KNOW IT IS A PROMISE OF SCRIPTURE, AND I KNOW I NOT “STRETCHING IT” FOR MY PURPOSES – SO I CAN PRAY IT W CONFIDENCE OF ITS ACCURACY.
Psalm 125:1-3
1 Those who trust in the Lord
Are like Mount Zion,
Which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
2 As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
So the Lord surrounds His people
From this time forth and forever.
3 For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
On the land allotted to the righteous,
Lest the righteous reach out their hands to iniquity.

It’s good to understand this Psalm, so it can be prayed effectively.
At first blush, it looks like it is ABOUT Mount Zion in Jerusalem – but it is not. The promise is way broader than that. It says THOSE – any people group, anywhere, who trust in the Lord will be LIKE (equivalent to, seen by God as) Mount Zion – and that becomes unmovable.
Then verse assures that IN LIKE MANNER AS HOW GOD SURROUNDS JERUSALEM – He will surround that group who trust in Him – and that is a “forevermore” promise.
Then verse 3 – which is pregnant w promise, tells us that a covenant land can gain access to a place of rescue and deliverance because – if we’re reading the Word – we know God is QANA over His people, all around the world – any place on earth.

THAT IS WHY we want the Word in us, and understood by us – so that our prayers can be most effective.
Look at these portions of Isa 55 – They are HHY – HAVEN’T HAPPENED YET. We know the nations have not yet flocked to the people of God. In fact, it has very much been to the contrary. But we know this WILL HAPPEN. So we can wait w expectation for these things to occur, and for the fullness of these verses to happen:

LOOKING AT “THE WORD OF GOD NOT RETURNING VOID….” – often proclaimed, and then nothing happens. Let’s see how that is explained to us:

ISA 55
5 Surely you shall call a nation you do not know,
And nations who do not know you shall run to you,
Because of the Lord your God,
And the Holy One of Israel;
For He has glorified you.” (HHY)

6 Seek the Lord while He may be found,
Call upon Him while He is near.

8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.

9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.

10 “For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there,
But water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
And bread to the eater,

11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

THAT is HOW you want to be praying – in ALIGNMENT and OBEDIENCE and LED by the Spirit of God, so that your prayers can truly be prayed in the faith that you are speaking and proclaiming the word of God – and can believe Him for success in your prayers.

Here is a promise of God to Isaiah the prophet, that then extends forward forever to his spiritual lineage. THAT would be us, when we are fully His:
ISA 59
21 “As for Me,” says the Lord, “this is My covenant with them: My Spirit who is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your descendants, nor from the mouth of your descendants’ descendants,” says the Lord, “from this time and forevermore.”

THAT is what is available to us. THAT is in part why Peter told us “all things that….(…oops was missing from my notes!):
2 Peter 1:2-4
2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord,
3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

BACK TO HAGGAI (which we read earlier) and the SHAKING-WORK PROMISE: Further to the SAME prophetic word is another PROMISE TO BE FULFILLED: God will fill His temple with glory – as we also just saw in the Solomon-temple-dedication bunny trail. There appears to be a distinct relationship between PRAYER, THE PRESENCE OF GOD, AND THE FILLING WITH GLORY:

And the further revelation is that the (v9): “glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former”.

Hag 2:7-9
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

Isaiah further tells us the FULFILLED TEMPLE is going to be a certain kind of place – accessible to Jew and Gentile alike – this is the temple the Lord
Is Preparing FOR US; and
Is Preparing US FOR:

Isa 56:1-7
1 Thus says the LORD: “Keep justice, and do righteousness, for My salvation is about to come, and My righteousness to be revealed.
2 Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who lays hold on it; who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and keeps his hand from doing any evil.”
3 Do not let the son of the foreigner who has joined himself to the LORD speak, saying, “The LORD has utterly separated me from His people”; nor let the eunuch say, “Here I am, a dry tree.”
4 For thus says the LORD: “To the eunuchs who keep My Sabbaths, and choose what pleases Me, and hold fast My covenant,
5 Even to them I will give in My house and within My walls a place and a name better than that of sons and daughters; I will give them an everlasting name that shall not be cut off.
6 “Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants– everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant–
7 Even them I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”

God’s great plan has ONE age coming to an end, and THE NEXT age immediately following, like DAY follows NIGHT.
That NEXT AGE is going to see a rebuilt temple, filled with people who:
KNOW TO PRAY; and also
KNOW HOW TO PRAY

I believe the season we are entering, and in fact have already entered, is a season of intensified conflict. GOD, knowing that, is allowing our prayers to WORK when they are in alignment w Him and His word, and also NOT WORK when they are out of that alignment. HE IS TRAINING US TO ENGAGE IN PRAYER WARFARE, EFFECTIVELY.

WEEK 3

Prayer In These Times – Week Three – 7.14.16

Next week I WILL NOT BE HERE – but I hope you are.
The corporate vision for this gathering RESTING PLACE, and these gatherings, is that they would be centered around prayer and worship, ministering to the Lord, hopefully w a deeper understanding and deeper conviction as to the invitation, the effectiveness, the impact, and the need for such activity.

Michele H, who loves the place of prayer and worship, will be sitting in for me next week – and the plan is for me to be back the following week.

We are praying and seeking the Lord as to how this continues and what it looks like. Suffice to say that there will be alternating evenings of prayer and worship and time in the Word. For now, our focus will definitely be on prayer, and things related to prayer, to get us into a deeper place of revelation, as we begin engaging in active prayer.

I do hope these meetings have had impact on your prayer life, on how you look at prayer and how you engage in prayer, and how you appreciate the “prayer opportunity”. More than the “charge” and the “instruction” and the “admonition” to pray, what is wonderful is when we get to a place of understanding that prayer is an opportunity for the Kingdom of heaven to come in and invade the kingdom of man – through our revelation of God’s will, through our anointing that is imparted to us, through our ability to take before the throne of the King the issues of life.

Quite importantly, in these most-shaking days, it’s also critical for us to understand the URGENT REQUIREMENT for the prayer of the saints.
It will be our survival and success, and in large part it could mean the survival of our society and our nation.

Each and every day is demonstrating the increase in intensity and frequency of wild events.
Man grows in his defiance of God.

LAST Thursday, as we met and discussed the time were in and the need for prayer, the Dallas shootings occurred.
TODAY we are heading off a huge terror attack in Nice, France.
I take no pleasure in saying that the obvious intensity and frequency of events of global trotroubling confirms my interpretation of end times events, and the call to the saints to be in place, on post, and in prayer.

I recently wrote something called: “THE EXALTATION OF WICKEDNESS”.
Ps 12 begins w the psalmist crying: “Help O Lord for the godly man ceases” and then concludes w the revelation as to why things are so awful, and getting worse all the time, until the return of the Lord.

The spiritual forces behind all this is not going to be withstood unless and until the church is praying as it called to pray.

Isa 28 offers a prophetic promise to the warriors of the Lord who understand the battle, and also the reward to those who would engage:
Isa 28
5 In that day the Lord of hosts will be
For a crown of glory and a diadem of beauty
To the remnant of His people,
6 For a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment,
And for strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

This is A season during which we should be prioritizing prayer, and in many way I believe it is THE season, prior to the Lord’s return, when we need to be prioritizing prayer in order to finish well.

AND SPEAKING OF GATES – points of entry – HERE IS THE HOPE:

Ps 24 (we touched on this earlier) – but this time the complete psalm – to reveal our qualifications to be receivers of His presence.
Psalm 24:

(The declaration of God’s sovereign ownership by virtue of it being His creation)
1 The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness,
The world and those who dwell therein.
2 For He has founded it upon the seas,
And established it upon the waters.

(The question of ANY PERSON’S qualification)
3 Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
Or who may stand in His holy place?

(The qualifications for attendance)
4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol,
Nor sworn deceitfully.

(The reward for that “perfect person” who might possess those qualities – which in the natural would disqualify us all)
5 He shall receive blessing from the Lord,
And righteousness from the God of his salvation.

(The miraculous revelation that there exists SOMETHING that can qualify even those whose fundamental spiritual DNA would disqualify them even from the womb – Jacob being referred to as “the deceiver” or “supplanter” – AND ALSO THE REVELATION as to what would over-ride that disqualification: DESPERATE HUNGER)
6 This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face.
Selah

(NOW, with that revelation – here’s the invitation to those who recognize their sincere hunger qualifies them)
7 Lift up your heads, O you gates!
And be lifted up, you everlasting doors!

(THE ASSURANCE AND THE PROMISE)
And the King of glory shall come in.

(THE QUESTION AND THE ANSWER: The One who reigns in sovereign authority)
8 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
The Lord mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O you gates!
Lift up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
10 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts,
He is the King of glory.
Selah

Here’s what the Lord confirms in Isa 65 – after dealing w the majority of the ones who are NOT going after Him in spirit and in truth:
ISA 65

THE REVELATION OF THE REMNANT
8 Thus says the Lord:
“As the new wine is found in the cluster,
And one says, ‘Do not destroy it,
For a blessing is in it,’
So will I do for My servants’ sake,
That I may not destroy them all.

THE PROMISE
9 I will bring forth descendants from Jacob,
And from Judah an heir of My mountains;
My elect shall inherit it,
And My servants shall dwell there.

THE CONFIRMATION OF REWARD FOR SEEKING HIM
10 Sharon shall be a fold of flocks,
And the Valley of Achor a place for herds to lie down,
For My people who have sought Me.

THE CHASE needs to be on.
That is our choice.
We choose to chase God.

In determining to CHASE GOD, we enter into the qualified group that is invited to lift up their heads, so the King of glory might come in.
And there is no better place for that, than the place of prayer – the intimate and personal place – even when we gather in groups – where time is spent on God and time spent with God.

To be effective, we should pray ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES. There are assurances, when we pray accurately, w understanding.

A FAVORITE PLACE for me, in these days, as we see a society eroding because of its raging against God.
I KNOW Psalm 125 CONTAINS A PROMISE, AND I KNOW I AM NOT “STRETCHING IT” FOR MY PURPOSES – SO I CAN PRAY IT W CONFIDENCE OF ITS ACCURACY.
Psalm 125:1-3
1 Those who trust in the Lord
Are like Mount Zion,
Which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
2 As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
So the Lord surrounds His people
From this time forth and forever.
3 For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
On the land allotted to the righteous,
Lest the righteous reach out their hands to iniquity.

It’s good to understand this Psalm, LIKE ANY PSALM, so it can be prayed effectively.
At first blush, it looks like it is ABOUT Mount Zion in Jerusalem – but it is not. The promise is way broader than that. It says THOSE – any people group, anywhere, who trust in the Lord will be LIKE (equivalent to, seen by God as) Mount Zion – and that becomes unmovable.
Then verse assures that IN LIKE MANNER AS HOW GOD SURROUNDS JERUSALEM – He will surround that group who trust in Him – and that is a “forevermore” promise.
Then verse 3 – which is pregnant w promise, tells us that a covenant land can gain access to a place of rescue and deliverance because – if we’re reading the Word – we know God is QANA over His people, all around the world – any place on earth.

THAT IS WHY we want the Word in us, and understood by us – so that our prayers can be most effective.
Look at these portions of Isa 55 – They are HHY – HAVEN’T HAPPENED YET. We know the nations have not yet flocked to the people of God.

In fact, it has very much been to the contrary. But we know this WILL HAPPEN. So we can wait w expectation for these things to occur, and for the fullness of these verses to happen – and I believe our prayers can activate these events to happen, as we fill those bowls in heaven.

Understanding these intended purposes, and praying in faith, we are literally partnering w God in His word not returning void, but instead, in His word being fulfilled.

LOOKING AT “THE WORD OF GOD NOT RETURNING VOID….” – often proclaimed, and then nothing happens. Let’s see how that is explained to us:

ISA 55 – refrigerator magnet verses, like ps118.
5 Surely you shall call a nation you do not know,
And nations who do not know you shall run to you,
Because of the Lord your God,
And the Holy One of Israel;
For He has glorified you.” (HHY – so it sets the timing for fulfillment)

6 Seek the Lord while He may be found,
Call upon Him while He is near.

8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.

9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.

10 “For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there,
But water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
And bread to the eater,

11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

THAT is HOW you want to be praying – in ALIGNMENT and OBEDIENCE and LED by the Spirit of God, so that your prayers can truly be prayed in the faith that you are speaking and proclaiming the word of God – and can believe Him for success in your prayers – that your prayers do not return void.

If WE are praying simply what we are THINKING, we’re already told WHAT God is thinking is higher than what WE are thinking.

And God’s desire is to reveal to us what He is thinking:
1 Cor 2:11, 12
For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

THERE is an ACTIVE AND ONGOING REVELATION OF THE SPIRIT that we are going after.
And the church without the Spirit is a dead church.

Remember when Jesus was responding to Satan’s lies, and told him this:
MATT 4:4
4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ ”

Jesus was quoting Deuteronomy 8 (a favorite chapter of mine as it led me on an amazing journey of revelation, years ago, that continues to this day).
Deut 8:3 says:
3 So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.

(YOU CAN READ THE FOLLOWING ON YOUR OWN – I don’t want to get hung up on this cool thing, for time-sake)
FIRST – The OT Hebrew word typically translated into “WORD” is DABAR. But that does not come up as the Hebrew word used in Deut 8 – because there is no word “WORD” in Deut 8:3.

3605 [e]
kāl-
כָּל־ by everything Noun
4161 [e]
mō-w-ṣā
מוֹצָ֥א [word] that proceeds out Noun
6310 [e]
p̄î-
פִֽי־ out of the mouth Noun

What would more accurately be written would be:
“Man does not live by bread alone, but by EVERY (all things!) that proceed from the mouth of God”
GOD’S ENTIRE CREATION-WILL AND PLAN AND SUBSTANCE CAME FORTH – WHEN HE SPOKE. It is so much bigger than the word “WORD”.

FOR our prayer-focused purposes in this class – that is NOT what I want to focus on. I want us to consider THE TENSE of WHAT IS COMING OUT OF GOD’S MOUTH.

We would do well to understand that the PROCESSION of the revealed will of God CONTINUES, always.

Jesus did NOT recite Deut 8 and tell us “…every (word) that proceeded (in the past) from the mouth of God”.

The ongoing revelation of His will is revealed to us, oftentimes, as we pray.
There is a divine necessity to remain in continuous communication w God, in the Spirit.

I below this is why there is so much resistance to prayer “in the Spirit”, prayer in tongues, in a heavenly language.

This coordinates perfectly w Romans 8 – once again – so that we recognize the critical nature of Spirit-led, Spirit-infused LIFE and PRAYER:

Rom 8:14-28
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,

19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God.
20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope;
21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.

22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.

23-25 speak to a groaning work of waiting, w expectation, and then tells us this is God’s HELPER for us during this travailing period

23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.
24 For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees?
25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.

26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

(HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS AND GREAT RELIEF RE THE EFFECTIVENESS AND POTENTIAL OF HOLY-SPIRIT INFUSED PRAYER: We don’t really need to know all the things we specifically need to be praying for, nor HOW to pray for some of them – because the Holy Spirit, IN US, is in complete harmony with the purposes of heaven, and HE KNOWS how we ought to be praying. He wants to pray FOR YOU THROUGH YOU)
27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
AND THEN WE GET THE “ALL THINGS….” PROMISE VERSE – within this context of Holy-Spirit infused, Spirit led life:
28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Not in earlier notes:
PAUL’S DISCOURSE ON TONGUES AND HOLY SPIRIT PRAYER, leading into PROPHECY

The words of our Lord – prophesying the upper room event:
Acts 1:4-5
4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me;
5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

Then the day of Pentecost :
they get filled w fire from heaven and they start praying weirdly, and here’s how it is DESCRIBED:

Acts 2:8-13
8 And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? (Then nations and languages are listed)
11—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.”
12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”
13 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine..”
(Peter re Joel 2.)

PAUL starts by saying this:
1 Cor 12
1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant:

I WANT TO ADDRESS THIS BECAUSE I AM CONVINCED OUR EFFECTIVENESS AND SUCCESS REQUIRES HOLY SPIRIT TONGUE TALKING HEAVENLY LANGUAGE PRAYER. PAUL QUOTING JOEL TO EXPLAIN THE UPPER ROOM CONFIRMS ITS CRITICAL REQUIREMENT.

OR CHURCH POSITION? LIKELY.
ELLIOT’S POSITION? DEFINITELY.

(ARE WE ALL GOOD TO GO RE SPEAKING AND PRAYING IN TONGUES?
DO WE WANT TO DISCUSS OR REVIEW THE FOLLOWING?)

Then he interrupts his 2-chapter instructional by telling us that unless we’re doing everything and anything out of true love, it is simply noise, and religion.
Then he goes back to finish up what is so critical to a Spirit-led, Spirit-infused life – which is one huge reason why our enemy has so campaigned against our walking in this authority – and his campaign has in many ways been most successful INSIDE the church.

I believe, in large part, that is why Jesus said the following – THIS IS CRITICAL FOR US TO UNDERSTAND AS THE CHALLENGE APPROACH US:
Mark 3
28 “Assuredly, I say to you, all sins will be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they may utter;
29 but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is subject to eternal condemnation”—
30 because they said, “He has an unclean spirit.”

Luke 12
10 “And anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but to him who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven.
11 “Now when they bring you to the synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how or what you should answer, or what you should say.
12 For the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.”

What we see, above, is Jesus assuring us of a Spirit-directed life in the most critical of times, and those times are being resisted EVEN by the ones who ought to be understanding the things of God.

The greater sin is calling the spirit-active components of God “unclean” or “demonic” or “not of God” – which actually takes place more IN church than OUT of church.
OUT of church, ignorant people typically bad-mouth Jesus.
IN church, it’s the ones w the charge to humbly know God and His ways, who have been raging against the Holy Spirit. Their accountability is greater. Hence, the warning above from the mouth of our Lord.

Preemptively, that is why Paul told us he did not want us ignorant of these things – because the church has blasphemously led many saints into that ignorance, speaking and teaching against these critical verses. And ignorance of the fullness of the Kingdom plan hamstrings saints.
EPH – “Having done all, to stand” becomes an impossibility.

ONE KEY to understanding these verses in Corinthians is to recognize when it says SPEAK and when it says PRAY/PRAYER.

SPEAKING is public speaking out.
PRAYING is to God – but individually as well as publicly.
It would clarify things to recognize where Paul is writing about SPEAKING in tongues and where is writing about PRAYING in tongues.

LALEO – g2980. λαλέω laleō; a prolonged form of an otherwise obsolete verb; to talk, i.e. utter words: — preach, say, speak (after), talk, tell, utter.

PROSEUCHOMAI g4336. προσεύχομαι; from 4314 and 2172; to pray to God,

1 Cor 14
13 Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret.
14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.
15 What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.
16 Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not understand what you say?
17 For you indeed give thanks well, but the other is not edified.
18 I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all;
19 yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.
20 Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature.

Then Paul goes on to reveal to us that our obedience to opening our mouths, in the Spirit, and praying and speaking in tongues – although it does not EDIFY (build up) OTHERS, it will edify our own spirits, so that we might prophesy.

And he tells us that our obedience to this spiritual charge is a prophetic declaration to the unbelieving world that one kingdom has been called by God to invade and overtake another kingdom.
THE WORDING PAUL USED is from Isaiah 28 – and only Isaiah 28 – and refers to anointed Nebuchadnezzar who was being called to invade disobedient Israel.
That was a WICKED KINGDOM being used by God to invade and conquer.
PAUL is telling us that the Spirit led children of God, in this age, are being called to represent a way more holy invasion – of God’s kingdom into the world.

21 In the law it is written:
“With men of other tongues and other lips
I will speak to this people;
And yet, for all that, they will not hear Me,” says the Lord.
22 Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe.
23 Therefore if the whole church comes together in one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those who are uninformed or unbelievers, will they not say that you are out of your mind?
24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he is convicted by all.
25 And thus the secrets of his heart are revealed; and so, falling down on his face, he will worship God and report that God is truly among you.

So we would do well to be filled w the Spirit of God, and to walk in all the fullness of the provisions of God, to accomplish His purposes. THAT will open the door for our infilling.

This is why Jesus told His disciples:
Luke 24
49 Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”

ACTS 1
7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

LET’S PRAY RIGHT NOW – for that infilling of the Spirit – be it your first time or your thousandth time.

BACK TO HAGGAI (which we read earlier) – the PROMISE OF GLORY around the time of the SHAKING-WORK:
God will fill His temple with glory – as we saw last week the Solomon-temple-dedication bunny trail – which we will get back to shortly, this evening.

There is a distinct correlation between PRAYER, THE PRESENCE OF GOD, AND THE FILLING WITH GLORY:
Hag 2:7-9
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

Isaiah tells us the GLORY-FILLED FINAL TEMPLE is going to be a certain kind of place – accessible to Jew and Gentile alike – this is the temple that the Lord
A. Is Preparing FOR US; and
B. Is Preparing US FOR:

WE NEED TO GET A VISION OF THIS END-PLAN:
This is yet another reason why He is “divinely working us over” to get us to the place of Spirit-filled living, through Spirit-filled prayer.

Isa 56:6-7
(the promise extending beyond the sons of Abraham who come to the Lord):
6 “Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants– everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant–
7 Even them I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”

God’s great plan has ONE age coming to an end, and THE NEXT age immediately following, like DAY follows NIGHT.
That NEXT AGE is going to see a rebuilt temple, filled with people who:
KNOW TO PRAY; and also
KNOW HOW TO PRAY

I believe the season we are entering, and in fact have already entered, is a season of intensified conflict. GOD, knowing that, is allowing our prayers to WORK when they are in alignment w Him and His word, and also to NOT WORK when they are out of that alignment.

HE IS TRAINING US TO ENGAGE IN PRAYER WARFARE, EFFECTIVELY, NOW.

What we are seeing in these and many other prophetic verses is an IMAGE OF THE PURPOSES OF GOD at the END of THIS AGE, and then extending into the NEXT AGE.

Furthermore, and critical for our understanding of the PRIORITY OF PRAYER is this amazing fact that ought to ignite our understanding of
our WORTH,
our POSITION,
our CALLING and
our PARTNERSHIP into the CREATION PLAN OF GOD.

CRITICAL NT REVELATION as to God’s prophetic plan – that WILL SURELY come to pass – is the BATTLE FOR OUR WORSHIP.

The scriptures make it clear that Satan’s ultimate goal was to get Jesus Himself to worship him.
(Luke 4:6-8). That is ongoing. Scriptures describing the end-of-age anti-Christ man illustrates someone so demonized that even world control will not satisfy him. He will demand worship.

THE RESISTANCE TO OUR PRAYERS, and our PRAYING:
So what we need to realize is that Satan (Hebrew: “Adversary”) rages against prayer and worship. It is his worst nightmare – a praying, worshipping saint.

Besides Satan’s promise to Jesus – that He’d get everything were He to worship Satan, it was and remains in complete opposition to the purpose of mankind.
We were meant for worship and prayer – only to God.
LUKE 8
And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.'”

This is why WE, as redeemed creatures, consistently encounter so much opposition to prayer – opposition to wanting to pray, to engage in prayer, to remain in prayer, to stay awake in prayer, and to surrender in prayer.

Some Biblical Promises – and we’re invited to remind the Lord of His promises:
A FAMOUS BIGGEE – couched in the CONTEXT of the prophetic paragraph – for clarity and emphasis:
(LAST WEEK we concluded with the prayer of Solomon at the dedication of the temple – a doctrinally accurate and effective prayer that ushered in the presence of God.

WRAPPING UP TONIGHT and looking at the amazing response and promise BY GOD, after Solomon had so powerfully and so accurately prayed at the dedication of the temple:
2 Chr 7:1-2
1 When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the 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.

SHORTLY THEREAFTER
2 Chr 7:12-22
12 Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice.
13 “When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people,
14 “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.
….God’s dream-dialogue w Solomon continues to confirm the accuracy of Solomon’s earlier temple-dedication prayer, accurately describing the cause and effect of man’s sinfulness and God’s righteous judgment.

Meanwhile, for us, let’s close w a prayer that would move God and put a smile on Solomon’s face – praying for our nation.

All scripture NKJV

WEEK 4

PRAYER IN THESE TIMES – week FOUR

Last week I was out of town and hopefully many of you were here, engaged in prayer and worship w Michelle. We want and require all of the components of prayer and worship, just as we are supposed to want and require a full gospel.

Over and over again the prophets encountering God were told to “eat the whole scroll”. That’s bible-speak for the whole enchilada.

Thankfully, the work of the Lord will not depend upon any one believer. God continues to be on the move, particularly in these days – and He’s wanting all hands on deck. Part of the plan.

TONIGHT, in keeping w the theme PRAYER IN THESE TIMES, I very much want to look at THESE TIMES, and also what the scriptures appear to be telling us about these times.

THAT will help align our prayer lives w the things God is doing on earth, as well as in the heavenly realms.
I believe our adversary would prefer we NEVER ADDRESSED, or at very worst, GLANCED OVER end times writings, because he knows our awareness of things coming would activate our prayer part I option, and he fears the elf ft of that.

Several things occurred while I was briefly out of town – one most notable being my receipt of a news article from friends in Israel speaking of a barely-disguised (except for the spiritually blind) satanic worship event coordinated in seven cities around the world – something that began several years ago in Belgium and is spreading country to country because of its “global” and “”world order” roots. Positioned as a festival of peace and unity.

The roots of the festival run directly back to paganism, Hinduism, and the occult. It is functionally another appearance of Baal evangelizing THE WORLD, and ISRAEL.

SOME EXCERPTS FROM THE NEWS ARTICLE (Kehila News – a Messianic news service in Israel):

Occult Music Festival “Tomorrowland” Invades the Holy Land

Occult Music Festival “Tomorrowland” Invades the Holy Land
The annual festival that uses music as a cover for occult indoctrination stakes a claim in Jerusalem.

Kehila News Israel Staff Jul 20, 2016

If the name makes you think of Disneyland, you’re right. “Tomorrowland” is a theme section at Disneyland. The original Walt Disney, a great fan of futuristic ideas, said that the Disneyland version was designed “to give you an opportunity to participate in adventures that are a living blueprint of our future.”

The global music festival called “Tomorrowland” …has the same goal… sort of. What is being offered, however, is neither a musical experience nor a technological one. The festival is openly spiritual, weaving “stories” and “fairy tales” in between the musical performances to communicate a hybrid of Luciferian, Wiccan and Hindu religion.

This year the “Tomorrowland” festival comes to Israel for the first time as the new 11,000-seat Payis Arena Stadium in the Holy City of Jerusalem hosts this pagan missionary outreach extravaganza, choosing instead to see it as “the world’s biggest music festival”.

This festival began in 2005 in Belgium, and its growth has been impressive. Starting in 2008, it settled on a weekend in late July, and the numbers topped 50,000. By 2012, the headcount was an incredible 185,000 participants.

In 2013, a companion festival was established in the USA (Georgia), named “Tomorrow World”. The following year, “Tomorrowland” opened a second base in Brazil. Then in 2015 came the idea of “mirror” festivals, live-linked from different locations via giant video screens. The “Mirror to Tomorrowland” festivals enabled youth to “unite” through the mirror and “be part of the Madness” in six countries:

Mexico, India, Japan, Colombia, Germany and South Africa. On July 23 (the second day of the 3-day Belgian festival), Israel becomes mirror number 7 to join the madness. The Jerusalem event is scheduled to run on July 23, 2016 from 8:00pm until 4:00am.

Each year revolves around a theme, and these provide the first clue that despite its billing as a global music festival, “Tomorrowland” is not really about music. The concepts of “life” and “happiness”, the “power” and “mysteries” of the invisible world, are explored in captivating, high-budget theme clips released well ahead of each festival. Often music is not even mentioned in these introductions. The second clue is that every single intro clip – as well as the festival kickoff ceremonies beamed from Belgium – includes the reverent opening of an animated book called “the book of wisdom”, from which all the festival’s “stories” are drawn. On its cover is the logo of “Tomorrowland”, an ambiguous design except for the “third eye“, the traditional occult sign of spiritual enlightenment. The eye is crowned, symbolizing a claim of lordship over this spiritual power source.

“The book of wisdom” was mentioned in the video promo clip for 2013 Georgia festival, stating, “The book of wisdom will be opened in our second home.” In the 2012 video, these explanations and visuals leave no doubt as to the pagan roots of this “wisdom”. The custodians of these writings (portrayed in the clip as bizarre horned characters engaged in various occult activities) are described as a “magnificent civilization” composed of “fairy-tale keepers”, and they receive honorable mention during the festivals.

In “The Arising of Life” (Tomorrowland 2013 Trailer), hints are dropped about an unidentified man who is “hidden from civilization” somewhere, and who is unlocking ancient secrets for mankind. This clip invites you to “connect with the beings who roam in the heart of this magical land… Just because you haven’t seen something doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.”

“The Key to Happiness” (Tomorrowland 2014 Trailer) “reveals a secret behind a magical key…” which acquaints festival-goers with another occult symbol of the mythical pathway to enlightenment: a mythical ancient machine waiting to be reactivated. Here again, we are told that this machine was built for mankind in the past by a mysterious hidden man, who entrusted the key to “guardians”.

Only once does music become a theme (“The Secret Kingdom of Melodia”, 2015). The short intro teases the viewer by asking where all music comes from. A longer clip presents music as merely a gateway into the spirit dimension, using innocent children as models, but doesn’t answer the question. You get that later at the Belgium festival, which introduces “the king of Melodia”… an image embedded in what looks like a Christian cathedral, framed by organ pipes. In fact, the audio reveals church-like organ music playing… not exactly the favorite genre for party-loving youth, but some things are more important than pleasing fans. Over this background music, the narrator explains that “The king of Melodia holds all music in his heart. His only desire is to unite the world in a single melody, and giving joy to all who come to his kingdom.”

Readers who know their Bibles will remember that as “the covering cherub” in God’s holy mountain, one particular archangel was endowed with musical ability, described as inlaid “tambourines and pipes” (Ezek.28:13, Hebrew). His Hebrew name, “Heilel ben Shahar” (Isa.14:12, “brightstar, son of the dawn”) indicates his ability to illuminate the darkness. So when the Belgian “mirror” tells us that the music produced by the king of Melodia has “immense power, filling the world with illuminating sounds,” we can know exactly which “kingdom” is sponsoring “Tomorrowland”.

This year’s theme is “The Elixir of Life” (Tomorrowland 2016 Introduction Trailer) in which a beautiful Wiccan maiden roams through an equally beautiful forest, consulting a book and gathering ingredients for a spell. The witch tells us that “it is from the past that our secret elixir originates,” and that the necessary ingredients are “in a place where only the chosen ones can enter.” Her cryptic statement, “We are all connected to her; it is her voice that guides me,” is left unexplained, but Gaia worshipers will understand. She needs one last ingredient to establish “my road to eternal bliss”, and to find it she has to walk blindfolded – a common requirement for an occult initiate.

God of course is never surprised.
The torch portion for last Shabbat was about Phineas standing up, getting a spear, and I paling a Hebrew man having see w a Canaanite woman, and the psalmist says:
Psalms 106:30-31
30 Then Phinehas stood up and intervened,
And the plague was stopped.
31 And that was accounted to him for righteousness
To all generations forevermore.

THE CONCLUSION OF THE ARTICLE – A CALL TO PRAYER – and a list of bullet points for the prayer.

What we are seeing, in complete alignment w scriptural prophecy, is the resurgence and even increase in Baal worship. And w that increase in worship is an increase in demonic activity.

Particularly the youth of Israel, disappointed and disgusted in the deadness and religiosity of what they see as “Judaism” by the Pharisaical Hasidim, are turning to the ways of the world.
Sadly, the ways of the world are not simply WORLDLY.
They are demonic.

This kind of activity ought to confirm to us what is happening, globally. We need to be praying people, taking a stand for righteousness. UNDERSTANDING WHAT PAUL SAID 2,000 years ago:

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. – Eph.6:12

Eph 6:13 & 18
13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

I sent out an email to many, from Malibu, so that folks might pray and intercede.
I am confident many did, not simply from my email alert, but from alerts and notices from saints all around the world.

HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS – in the way of a promise – represented in the portion of scripture referred to as the ISAIAH APOCALYPSE – which I taught on several months ago – it pertains to assaults against Israel (PARTIALLY fulfilled in past historic events, but never FULLY-FILLED – so stay tuned):

THE REWARD WAITING FOR THOSE WHO ARE ON-POST
Isa 28:5
In that day the Lord of hosts will be
For a crown of glory and a diadem of beauty
To the remnant of His people,
6 For a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment,
And for strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

There is a place of spiritual conflict and resistance to which the saints are being called, and that call is a place of PRAYER and WORSHIP and STANDING ON THE WORD OF GOD.

This particular invasive demonic festival, held the 17th of Tammuz and in the holy city of Jerusalem – also ought to confirm w us the spiritual relevance of the times and seasons in which we live.

HISTORICALLY – 17th of Tammuz:
http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/479885/jewish/The-17th-of-Tammuz.htm

The fast of the 17th of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, known as Shivah Asar B’Tammuz, is the start of a three-week mourning period for the destruction of Jerusalem and the two Holy Temples.
The fast actually commemorates five tragic events that occurred on this date:
1 Moses broke the tablets when he saw the Jewish people worshipping the Golden Calf.
2 During the Babylonian siege of Jerusalem, the Jews were forced to cease offering the daily sacrifices due to the lack of sheep.
3 Apostomos burned the holy Torah.1
4 An idol was placed in the Holy Temple.2
5 The walls of Jerusalem were breached by the Romans, in 69 CE, after a lengthy siege. (Three weeks later, after the Jews put up a valiant struggle, the Romans destroyed the second Holy Temple on the 9th of Av.)
The Jerusalem Talmud maintains that this is also the date when the Babylonians breached the walls of Jerusalem on their way to destroying the first Temple.

Prophetically, if 17 Tammuz happens to be a special day of judgment by God, I personally would be looking to TWO MORE events to occur….

So here we have a spiritual enemy at work, and we have a God who is leaning heavily upon His disobedient people, Israel – fulfilling HIS PROMISE OF SHAKING AND PRESSURIZATION – also revealing to us the PURPOSE OF THE INVASIVE WORK:

(THESE ARE NOTES WRITTEN PRIOR TO THE FESTIVAL NOTICE – several weeks ago)
BACK TO HAGGAI (which we read earlier) – the PROMISE OF GLORY around the time of the SHAKING-WORK:
God will fill His temple with glory – as we saw last week the Solomon-temple-dedication bunny trail – which we will get back to shortly, this evening.

There is a distinct correlation between PRAYER, THE PRESENCE OF GOD, AND THE FILLING WITH GLORY:
Hag 2:7-9
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

Isaiah tells us the GLORY-FILLED FINAL TEMPLE is going to be a certain kind of place – accessible to Jew and Gentile alike – this is the temple that the Lord
A. Is Preparing FOR US; and
B. Is Preparing US FOR:

WE NEED TO GET A VISION OF THIS END-PLAN:
This is yet another reason why He is “divinely working us over” to get us to the place of Spirit-filled living, through Spirit-filled prayer.

Isa 56:6-7
(the promise extending beyond the sons of Abraham who come to the Lord):
6 “Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the LORD, to serve Him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be His servants– everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant–
7 Even them I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”

God’s great plan has ONE age coming to an end, and THE NEXT age immediately following, like DAY follows NIGHT.
That NEXT AGE is going to see a rebuilt temple, filled with people who:
KNOW TO PRAY; and also
KNOW HOW TO PRAY

I believe the season we are entering, and in fact have already entered, is a season of intensified conflict.

THE BIRTHING PROCESS OF THE NEXT AGE IS, LIKE ALL BIRTHING PROCESS, TRANSITIONAL, UNCOMFORTABLE, AND DEFINITELY A “PROCESS”.
THAT IS SUPPORTED by scripture.

GOD, knowing that, is allowing our prayers to WORK when they are in alignment w Him and His word, and also to NOT WORK when they are out of that alignment.

HE IS TRAINING US TO ENGAGE IN PRAYER WARFARE, EFFECTIVELY, NOW.

What we are seeing in these and many other prophetic verses is an IMAGE OF THE PURPOSES OF GOD at the END of THIS AGE, and then extending into the NEXT AGE.

Furthermore, and critical for our understanding of the PRIORITY OF PRAYER is this amazing fact that ought to ignite our understanding of
our WORTH,
our POSITION,
our CALLING and
our PARTNERSHIP into the CREATION PLAN OF GOD.

CRITICAL NT REVELATION as to God’s prophetic plan – that WILL SURELY come to pass – is the BATTLE FOR OUR WORSHIP.

The scriptures make it clear that Satan’s ultimate goal was to get Jesus Himself to worship him.
(Luke 4:6-8). That is ongoing. Scriptures describing the end-of-age anti-Christ man illustrates someone so demonized that even world control will not satisfy him. He will demand worship.

THE RESISTANCE TO OUR PRAYERS, and our PRAYING:
So what we need to realize is that Satan (Hebrew: “Adversary”) rages against prayer and worship. It is his worst nightmare – a praying, worshipping saint.

Besides being A LIE (because there is no truth in Him), Satan’s promise to Jesus – that He’d get everything were He to worship Satan, was and remains in complete opposition to the entire creation-purpose of mankind.

We were meant for worship and prayer – exclusively and only to God.
LUKE 4:8
And Jesus answered and said to him, “Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.'”

This is why WE, as redeemed creatures, consistently encounter so much opposition to prayer – opposition to wanting to pray, to engage in prayer, to remain in prayer, to stay awake in prayer, and to surrender in prayer.

Some Biblical Promises – and we’re invited to remind the Lord of His promises:
A FAMOUS BIGGEE – couched in the CONTEXT of the prophetic paragraph – for clarity and emphasis:
(LAST WEEK we concluded with the prayer of Solomon at the dedication of the temple – a doctrinally accurate and effective prayer that ushered in the presence of God.

Looking at the amazing response and promise BY GOD, after Solomon had so powerfully and so accurately prayed at the dedication of the temple:
2 Chr 7:1-2
1 When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the 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.

SHORTLY THEREAFTER
2 Chr 7:12-22
12 Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice.
13 “When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people,
14 “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.
….God’s dream-dialogue w Solomon continues to confirm the accuracy of Solomon’s earlier temple-dedication prayer, accurately describing the cause and effect of man’s sinfulness and God’s righteous judgment.

GOD’S PROMISE TO JERUSALEM – His city and the city central to His people and His purposes
Isa 62
1 For Zion’s sake I will not hold My peace, And for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,
Until her righteousness goes forth as brightness,
And her salvation as a lamp that burns.
2 The Gentiles shall see your righteousness,
And all kings your glory.
You shall be called by a new name,
Which the mouth of the Lord will name.
3 You shall also be a crown of glory
In the hand of the Lord,
And a royal diadem
In the hand of your God.
4 You shall no longer be termed Forsaken,
Nor shall your land any more be termed Desolate;
But you shall be called Hephzibah (LOVELY) , and your land Beulah (MARRIED);
For the Lord delights in you,
And your land shall be married.

OUR CHARGE AND OUR ASSIGNMENT – RIGHT NOW
6 I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem;
They shall never hold their peace day or night.
You who make mention of the Lord, do not keep silent,
7 And give Him no rest till He establishes
And till He makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth.

10 Go through,
Go through the gates!
Prepare the way for the people;
Build up,
Build up the highway!
Take out the stones,
Lift up a banner for the peoples!
11 Indeed the Lord has proclaimed
To the end of the world:
“Say to the daughter of Zion,
‘Surely your salvation is coming;
Behold, His reward is with Him,
And His work before Him.’ ”

12 And they shall call them (later, once Israel returns to their God) The Holy People,
The Redeemed of the Lord;
And you shall be called Sought Out,
A City Not Forsaken.

ISA 66
8 Who has heard such a thing?
Who has seen such things?
Shall the earth be made to give birth in one day?
Or shall a nation be born at once?
For as soon as Zion was in labor,
She gave birth to her children.

9 Shall I bring to the time of birth, and not cause delivery?” says the Lord.
“Shall I who cause delivery shut up the womb?” says your God.
10 “Rejoice with Jerusalem,
And be glad with her, all you who love her;
Rejoice for joy with her, all you who mourn for her;

15 For behold, the Lord will come with fire
And with His chariots, like a whirlwind,
To render His anger with fury,
And His rebuke with flames of fire.
16 For by fire and by His sword
The Lord will judge all flesh;
And the slain of the Lord shall be many.
17 “Those who sanctify themselves and purify themselves,
To go to the gardens
After an idol in the midst,
Eating swine’s flesh and the abomination and the mouse,
Shall be consumed together,” says the Lord.

18 “For I know their works and their thoughts. It shall be that I will gather all nations and tongues; and they shall come and see My glory.
19 I will set a sign among them; and those among them who escape I will send to the nations: to Tarshish and Pul and Lud, who draw the bow, and Tubal and Javan, to the coastlands afar off who have not heard My fame nor seen My glory. And they shall declare My glory among the Gentiles.

THEN, AFTER JUDGMENT AND PURIFICATION OF THE LAND:
22 “For as the new heavens and the new earth
Which I will make shall remain before Me,” says the Lord,
“So shall your descendants and your name remain.
23 And it shall come to pass
That from one New Moon to another,
And from one Sabbath to another,
All flesh shall come to worship before Me,” says the Lord.
24 “And they shall go forth and look
Upon the corpses of the men
Who have transgressed against Me.
For their worm does not die,
And their fire is not quenched.
They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh.”

That is how the prophetic book of Isaiah, prophetically ends. It completes its prophesy AT AND ABOUT THE END THE AGE, CITING CONDITIONS AT THE END OF THE AGE.

1 Cor 10:11
11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.

AND PETER PUTS IT THIS WAY –speaking of the events at the end of age:
2 Peter 3
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,
12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?
13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

The Jewish People speak of DAYS OF AWE each year, as a season of remembrance. I believe the Days Of Awe are actually reserved for the climax of this age – and I am further inclined to believe we are heading towards them at noticeable pace.

What we appear to be experiencing is the beginning of the bubbling of the teapot of God. The teapot of troubling. Tribulation, if you will. Whether you might think it is THE Tribulation, or merely A SEASON OF Tribulation, we are no doubt living in increasingly troubled times.

And our great God utilizes, and in fact often initiates troubling for the purpose of drawing men to Himself.

Psalms 78:32-34
32 In spite of this they still sinned,
And did not believe in His wondrous works.
33 Therefore their days He consumed in futility,
And their years in fear.
34 When He slew them, then they sought Him;
And they returned and sought earnestly for God.

SOME GOOD deeds of Asa, a Judean king whose life sadly later illustrated the problems associated with disobedience. BUT FOR OUR PURPOSES – we see him responding well, early, and we get to hear some good teaching from Azariah the prophet
2 Chronicles 15:1-8
1 Now the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded.
2 And he went out to meet Asa, and said to him: “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin. The Lord is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you.
3 For a long time Israel has been without the true God, without a teaching priest, and without law;
AND HERE’S THE GOOD FRUIT OF GOD’S TROUBLE:
4 but when in their trouble they turned to the Lord God of Israel, and sought Him, He was found by them.

(I am praying about spending a few Thursdays analyzing some of the kings of Israel and Judah – so that we might learn from their successes and failures. There is much to learn. AND we’re called KINGS as well as PRIESTS. Some examples might be good for us – pray for me re this direction as we go forward)

Daniel 12:1-3
1 “At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people;
And there shall be a time of trouble,
Such as never was since there was a nation,
Even to that time.
And at that time your people shall be delivered,
Every one who is found written in the book.
2 And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake,
Some to everlasting life,
Some to shame and everlasting contempt.
3 Those who are wise shall shine
Like the brightness of the firmament,
And those who turn many to righteousness
Like the stars forever and ever.

COMPARE (SLIDE) Dan 12:1 to Matthew 24:21
21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.

CONTINUING IN MATTHEW (to defuse the popularized misunderstanding that the toughest days ever to hit the earth was in the first or second century AD

Matt 24
29 “Immediately (“EUTHEOS” – at once) after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

These things are coming upon us, and our great God is calling us to that watchman position, and as He’s doing that, I believe He is “watching the watchmen”, and taking note of our response to His calling upon our lives.

I can testify that God has been doing wondrous things in my own life the past few weeks. Not all necessarily according to my plan or purpose, but instead according to HIS PLANS and HIS PURPOSE to draw me deeper to the DESIRE OF THE NATIONS.

Our response and also our own initiative to press in to Him will have a lot to say about our success.

I so love and appreciate pastor Daniel’s message this weekend re spirit living, and coming back into the place of hearing God. It will be our safety and our success, and the only safety and success.

I wrote something recently called SHORT TIME LIVING. I would recommend it.

Short Time Living

Let’s pray. And let’s pray for Israel.

All scripture NKJV

WEEK 5

PRAYER IN THESE TIMES – week five.

I want to look at EFFECTUAL PRAYER this evening, because I believe our READINESS is as important as our WILLINGNESS and our KNOWLEDGE as to HOW TO pray.

Praying effectively is more than praying “ACCORDING TO THE WILL OF GOD”, and is more than simply praying STUFF THAT GOD LIKES and is inline w His word. Those are critically important, and good, of course. But there’s more. There is something to be said about THE FOUNTAIN as much as what comes out of it.

One of the great things about scripture is that, because it is alive and not dead, our looking into it and discussing it activates the process itself, so we can believe God that He will be doing in us what we are discussing this evening. We’re YEARNING along w the LEARNING.

THIS, IN FACT, confirms that statement and also describes the CUTTING WORK we will be looking into this evening:
Hebrews 4:11-12
11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest (that SHABBAT of covenant obedience), lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.
THE ACTIVE HOPE
12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

WE READ THIS earlier but once again, w a stronger lens:
James 5:16-17
16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months.

RIGHTEOUS MAN – his prayers accomplish much.
Yes – the righteousness is in Christ, and we have a say in that process.

And we would be wise to understand the accountability for holiness increases the anointing.
EXAMPLE: Moses at the rock.

James is speaking about a lifestyle of cleanliness here – not an accumulation of sin or a failure to “TAKE THE GARBAGE OUT” of our own lives.

WE WON’T READ IT ALL – but it has that anointing of truth:
Sarah Sylvia Cynthia Stout – would not take the garbage out.
Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout
Would not take the garbage out!
She’d scour the pots and scrape the pans, Candy the yams and spice the hams,
5 And though her daddy would scream and shout, She simply would not take the garbage out. And so it piled up to the ceiling:
Coffee grounds, potato peelings,
Brown bananas, rotten peas, 10 Chunks of sour cottage cheese.
It filled the can, it covered the floor,
It cracked the window and blocked the door With bacon rinds and chicken bones, Drippy ends of ice cream cones,
15 Prune pits, peach pits, orange peel, Gloppy glumps of cold oatmeal, Pizza crusts and withered greens, Soggy beans and tangerines,
Crusts of black burned buttered toast,
20 Gristly bits of beefy roasts…
The garbage rolled on down the hall, It raised the roof, it broke the wall… Greasy napkins, cookie crumbs, Globs of gooey bubblegum,
25 Cellophane from green baloney, Rubbery blubbery macaroni,
Peanut butter, caked and dry, Curdled milk and crusts of pie, Moldy melons, dried up mustard,
30 Eggshells mixed with lemon custard, Cold french fries and rancid meat, Yellow lumps of Cream of Wheat. At last the garbage reached so high That finally it touched the sky.
35 And all the neighbors moved away,
And none of her friends would come to play. And finally Sarah Cynthia Stout said,
“OK, I’ll take the garbage out!”
But then, of course, it was too late
40 The garbage reached across the state, From New York to the Golden Gate And there, in the garbage she did hate, Poor Sarah met an awful fate,
That I cannot right now relate
45 Because the hour is much too late.
But children, remember Sarah Stout And always take the garbage out!
“Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out”
Thank you Shel Silverstein!

There is something we need to learn and press into, in the way of our lives always being His, and that place will keep us anointed and ready for prayer-purpose, and even BEYOND BEING PREPARE TO PRAY.

HERE’S THE CULMINATION OF PREPARATION:
(NOT a slide)
Ephesians 2:19-22
19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,
20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone,
21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord,
22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

OLD HYMN:
LORD PREPARE ME TO BE A SANCTUARY….
Emmanuel. God in us, is the INTENT of this journey.
Residing. Ever present.

THAT is the GOAL of our sanctification.

PREPARATION.

I typically recite this favorite psalm, concentrating on the front end of the refinement process of God towards His saints. THAT PROCESS, btw, is PREPARATION.
Let’s look at the back end of Ps 66 – spoken by a man who has been through the front end of the Psalm and understands:
Psalms 66:16-20
16 Come and hear, all you who fear God,
And I will declare what He has done for my soul.
17 I cried to Him with my mouth,
And He was extolled with my tongue.
18 If I regard iniquity in my heart,
The Lord will not hear.
19 But certainly God has heard me;
He has attended to the voice of my prayer.
20 Blessed be God,
Who has not turned away my prayer,
Nor His mercy from me!

One of the things we want to do, in preparing to pray, is to be PREPARED, as vessels of the Lord, to pray.
Sounds like word play, but it is not.

The scriptures call us to be PREPARED PEOPLE.

ONCE AGAIN – THE PERSONAL DISCLAIMER – this is something I am working at. It has by no means been mastered (this past weekend – and praying at Scholz….)

PRE-PARING

The word “prepare” shows up many times in scripture, and it is English for several different Hebrew words, three of which are:
ASA H6213 – to do or make, to accomplish
and KUN – to make ready, to make, to prepare,

AZAR – gird up,

KUN – prepare, fix, ordain, render sure, to be proper or erect = as in PREPARE TO MEET YOUR GOD.

Interestingly ( I mentioned this briefly on FB) – the English word PREPARE has some amazing roots of origin. I often chuckle when I see etymology take us back to Greek or Latin, simply because it appears evident that many of their words have roots going back to Hebrew, which may well have been THE original language.

Nonetheless, here’s PREPARE traced back to Latin and Greek:
pare \ˈper\
: to carefully cut off the outside or the ends of (something)
: to make (something) smaller : to reduce (something) in size, amount, or number
Full Definition
transitive verb
1 : to trim off an outside, excess, or irregular part of 2 : to diminish or reduce by or as if by paring Other forms: pared; par·ing
par·er noun
Examples
• The company has to find a way to pare expenses.
• pared the stray branches on the tree
Origin: Middle English, from Anglo-French parer to make, prepare, pare, from Latin parare to prepare, acquire; akin to Latin parere to give birth to, produce, Greek porein to give, present, Sanskrit pṛṇātihe gives.
First use: 14th century
Synonyms: bob, crop, cut, cut back, dock, lop (off), nip, clip, poll, prune, shave, shear, snip, trim

PREPARE
pre·pare \pri-ˈper\
: to make (someone or something) ready for some activity, purpose, use, etc.
: to make yourself ready for something that you will be doing, something that you expect to happen, etc.
: to make or create (something) so that it is ready for use
Full Definition
transitive verb
1 a : to make ready beforehand for some purpose, use, or activity 
b : to put in a proper state of mind
2 : to work out the details of : plan in advance 3 a : to put together : compound 
b : to put into written form intransitive verb
: to get ready Other forms: pre·pared; pre·par·ing
pre·par·er noun
Examples
• The teacher prepared the students for the test.
• Your room is being prepared now and should be ready soon.
• The nurses prepared the patient for surgery.
Origin: Middle English, from Middle French preparer, from Latinpraeparare, from prae- pre- + parare to procure, prepare — more at pare.
First use: 15th century
Synonyms: fit, fix, groom, lay, prep, ready

There appears to be a magical correlation between the concept of the CUT and PREPARATION.
That ties in perfectly w the Hebraic concept of circumcision – NOT the outward cutting away of flesh (which is symbolic) but the inward context of a cut heart.

Paul wrote:
Romans 2:28-29
28 For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh;
29 but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.

That is the PRE-PARED heart. The CUT heart of covenant.
In the past I’ve spoken about the letter SHIN and its being the root for some powerful Hebrew words:
SHALOM – peace
SHABBAT – rest
SHABA – oath or vow.
And we’ve looked at Isa 28:12 where we are told the REST of God came in the place of doing things in His order, according to His purposes.

The point to this is PRE-PARING – PRE-CUTTING the foreskin of your heart, so that you are PREPARED to be praying effectively.

Deuteronomy 10:16-20
16 Therefore circumcise the foreskin of your heart, and be stiff-necked no longer.
17 For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality nor takes a bribe.
18 He administers justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the stranger, giving him food and clothing.
19 Therefore love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
20 You shall fear the Lord your God; you shall serve Him, and to Him you shall hold fast, and take oaths in His name.

WANTING TO LEARN FROM THE KINGS – and remembering we’re called into the place of kingship in Him – Learning from kingly failure:

2 Chronicles 12:1-14
1 Now it came to pass, when Rehoboam had established the kingdom and had strengthened himself, that he forsook the law of the Lord, and all Israel along with him.
2 And it happened in the fifth year of King Rehoboam that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, because they had transgressed against the Lord, ……

5 Then Shemaiah the prophet came to Rehoboam and the leaders of Judah, who were gathered together in Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said to them, “Thus says the Lord: ‘You have forsaken Me, and therefore I also have left you in the hand of Shishak.’ ”
6 So the leaders of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, “The Lord is righteous.”

12 When he humbled himself, the wrath of the Lord turned from him, so as not to destroy him completely; and things also went well in Judah.

THE RECAP OF REHOBOAM’S REIGN:
13 Thus King Rehoboam strengthened himself in Jerusalem and reigned. Now Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he became king; and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put His name there. His mother’s name was Naamah, an Ammonitess.
14 And he did evil, because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord.

Sadly there are way too many examples of failure to succeed because the people of God failed to be holy and in that failure they experienced rejection by God:

The disastrous example of prayers and worship and fasting not working
because of compromised living

Isaiah 1:12-15 (PRAYER NOT WORKING)
12 “When you come to appear before Me,
Who has required this from your hand,
To trample My courts?
13 Bring no more futile sacrifices;
Incense is an abomination to Me.
The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies—
I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting.
14 Your New Moons and your appointed feasts
My soul hates;
They are a trouble to Me,
I am weary of bearing them.
15 When you spread out your hands,
I will hide My eyes from you;
Even though you make many prayers,
I will not hear.

Amos 5:23-27 (WORSHIP NOT WORKING)
23 Take away from Me the noise of your songs,
For I will not hear the melody of your stringed instruments.
24 But let justice run down like water,
And righteousness like a mighty stream.
25 “Did you offer Me sacrifices and offerings
In the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel?
26 You also carried Sikkuth your king
And Chiun, your idols,
The star of your gods,
Which you made for yourselves.
27 Therefore I will send you into captivity beyond Damascus,”
Says the Lord, whose name is the God of hosts.

Here’s the famous complaint of Isa 58, and the answer to the complaint:
Isaiah 58:1-4 (FASTING NOT WORKING)
1 “Cry aloud, spare not; Lift up your voice like a trumpet;
Tell My people their transgression,
And the house of Jacob their sins.
2 Yet they seek Me daily,
And delight to know My ways,
As a nation that did righteousness,
And did not forsake the ordinance of their God.
They ask of Me the ordinances of justice;
They take delight in approaching God.
3 ‘Why have we fasted,’ they say, ‘and You have not seen?
Why have we afflicted our souls, and You take no notice?’
‘In fact, in the day of your fast you find pleasure,
And exploit all your laborers.
4 Indeed you fast for strife and debate,
And to strike with the fist of wickedness.
You will not fast as you do this day,
To make your voice heard on high.

HERE’S GOD GREAT MERCY AND GREAT RESPONSIVE PROMISE TO OUR COMING BACK TO HIS WAYS:
VERSE 8 – THEN THEY ARE INSTRUCTED HOW TO BEHAVE, and here’s the promise:
Isaiah 58:8-9
8 Then your light shall break forth like the morning,
Your healing shall spring forth speedily,
And your righteousness shall go before you;
The glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
9 Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer;
You shall cry, and He will say, “Here I am.’

AND WE HAVE the man JOB challenging God, and then God challenging Job
Job 40:6-14
6 Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said:
7 “Now prepare yourself like a man;
I will question you, and you shall answer Me:
8 “Would you indeed annul My judgment?
Would you condemn Me that you may be justified?
9 Have you an arm like God?
Or can you thunder with a voice like His?

Here’s REALLY GREAT NEWS – that God will work WITH us and IN us when we present ourselves before Him and begin spending time with Him.
Psalms 10:17-18
17 Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble;
You will prepare their heart;
You will cause Your ear to hear,
18 To do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed,
That the man of the earth may oppress no more.

AND YET HERE’S ALSO OUR INVESTMENT IN THE PROCESS – like why we are here right now….
Proverbs 16:1
1 The preparations of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.

Our call to action
Isaiah 40:3
3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make straight in the desert
A highway for our God.

Above is our CALL to PREPARE for the coming of the Lord – be it FOR HIS IMMINENT RETURN, or for His showing up at anytime prior to that.

The Christian Bible has the prophet Malachi positioned as the last book. I do believe this is fitting, given what we now know this side of Calvary – that the accumulation of Hebrew writings are pointing to the imminent APPEARANCE(S) of the Lord Messiah – first in gentle birth for sacrifice, and then in violent appearance for judgment and redemption.

Here’s God recognizing the importance of preparation, and then declaring what His coming will accomplish in preparing His people for proper service
Malachi 3:1-7
1 “Behold, I send My messenger, And he will prepare the way before Me.
And the Lord, whom you seek,
Will suddenly come to His temple,
Even the Messenger of the covenant,
In whom you delight.
Behold, He is coming,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
2 “But who can endure the day of His coming?
And who can stand when He appears?
For He is like a refiner’s fire
And like launderers’ soap.
3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver;
He will purify the sons of Levi,
And purge them as gold and silver,
That they may offer to the Lord
An offering in righteousness.
4 “Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem
Will be pleasant to the Lord,
As in the days of old,
As in former years.
5 And I will come near you for judgment;
I will be a swift witness
Against sorcerers,
Against adulterers,
Against perjurers,
Against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans,
And against those who turn away an alien—
Because they do not fear Me,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
THE MERCY – but also the revelation that the NEW COVENANT does not present to us a NEW GOD (who thinks any differently about sin and its price)
6 “For I am the Lord, I do not change;
Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.

This of course in interesting in that it is proclaimed as being a declaration of the ministry of John The Baptist, coming in the spirit of Elijah, and yet we are also told this same “ELIJAH ANOINTING” will be prominent prior to the “great and dreadful day of the Lord” – which definitely was NOT His birth in a stable in Bethlehem – so we would do well to see these verses as PREGNANT for activation in our own lives.

Malachi 4
1 “For behold, the day is coming, Burning like an oven,
And all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble.
And the day which is coming shall burn them up,”
Says the Lord of hosts,
“That will leave them neither root nor branch.
2 But to you who fear My name
The Sun of Righteousness shall arise
With healing in His wings;
And you shall go out
And grow fat like stall-fed calves.
3 You shall trample the wicked,
For they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet
On the day that I do this,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
4 “Remember the Law of Moses, My servant,
Which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel,
With the statutes and judgments.
5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet
Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.
6 And he will turn (“SUB” h7725 – break build, circumcise, do anything….)
The hearts of the fathers to the children,
And the hearts of the children to their fathers,
Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.”

PREPARATION AS BEING PART OF OUR PROMISE FOR REWARD:
John 14:1-3
1 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.
2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.
The life and death covenant – Revelation of the requirement, the blessing and the jeopardy

EARLY-TEXT MENTION OF THE PRE-PARED HEART – both willing work of our own will and also a work of the Lord

Deuteronomy 10:12-20 – OF OUR OWN FREE WILL
12 “And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul,
13 and to keep the commandments of the Lord and His statutes which I command you today for your good?
14 Indeed heaven and the highest heavens belong to the Lord your God, also the earth with all that is in it.
15 The Lord delighted only in your fathers, to love them; and He chose their descendants after them, you above all peoples, as it is this day.
THE CUTTING PREPARATION FOR THE OUTPOURING
16 Therefore circumcise the foreskin of your heart, and be stiff-necked no longer.

Deuteronomy 30:4-6 – A WORK OF THE LORD
4 If any of you are driven out to the farthest parts under heaven, from there the Lord your God will gather you, and from there He will bring you.
5 Then the Lord your God will bring you to the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it. He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers.
6 And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.

WE’RE TO ESTABLISH OUR HEARTS IN ADVANCE, in preparation, in faith – not simply in response to Him showing up (that in fact, could be likened to the 5 virgins scrambling to get the oil for the lamps, but it was too late. They were not prepared.
James 5:7-8
7 Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain.
8 You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.

2 Peter 3:10-11 – the rhetorical question asked last week…..
The Day of the Lord
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
THE QUESTION:
11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,

A GREAT VERSE to end on, and pray into
Psalms 101:2-3
2 I will behave wisely in a perfect way.
Oh, when will You come to me?
I will walk within my house with a perfect heart.
3 I will set nothing wicked before my eyes;
I hate the work of those who fall away;
It shall not cling to me.

All scripture NKJV

WEEK 6

Prayer In These Times – week six

THE NIGHT SHIFT
DREAM PRAYER
THE SECRET PLACE OF REVELATION AND DIALOGUE

We’re going to leave more time for prayer tonight.

I admit that what we’re delving into is pertinent to ALL times as much as THESE time, but THESE times are OUR times, and I firmly believe they are THE times before the return of our Lord, and that being the case, our understanding the urgency, glory, potential, necessity, and spiritual nuances of prayer, are more and more critical.

I’m further encouraged to see how the Lord is “working me over” as I delve into this study, and I am believing He will do the same for anyone who wants to go deeper. I want to. And I know I need to go deeper in Him.

Jesus said this about times prior to His return:
Luke 21:25-36
25 “And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring;
26 men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
27 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
28 Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”

The Parable of the Fig Tree
29 Then He spoke to them a parable: “Look at the fig tree, and all the trees.
30 When they are already budding, you see and know for yourselves that summer is now near.
31 So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.
32 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all things take place.
33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
The Importance of Watching
34 “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.
35 For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth.
36 Watch therefore, and 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.”

It’s almost humorous for our Lord to say “Assuredly” – as if EVERYTHING that He EVER SAID was anything less than guaranteed. I believe He tells us things like: “verily verily” or “assuredly” as a pre-emptive strike against what He knew would be a point of prophetic contention – He knew there would be lies propagated in the future to specifically speak contrary to the plans of heaven. He was saying “ASSUREDLY” for us.

All that to say: Moran’s message this past weekend was solid, and if you haven’t sat in the classes re the Isaiah Apocalypse or Ezekiel 33-39 a few years ago, then perhaps this weekend’s message presented itself as a shock to you, a wake up call. Personally, Moran is yet one more clear voice speaking biblical truth. I am of the mind that we’re called to identify the FIG TREE SITUATION of our times. There are things happening in the earthly and heavenly realms, IN THIS SEASON, and they are intended to be signs for us.
THE JESUS TELLS US CLEARLY:

BACK AGAIN TO THE FINAL VERSES we just looked at (BACK 2 SLIDES)
Luke 21
31 So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.
32 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all things take place.
“GENERATION”: (GENEA – means way more than the group of people HEARING JESUS SPEAK – it can mean AGE, which theo-LOGIC would lean us toward believing. The context of the passage, to coordinate with ALL of prophetic scripture, would require that this was definitely NOT fulfilled during the days of the first or second century, but instead position themselves within the timeframes prior to the completion of this AGE.

AND THEN WE’RE ASSURED THIS IS NOT GOING TO “GO AWAY” SIMPLY BECAUSE WE EITHER IGNORE THE SITUATIONS ON EARTH, or EVEN WORSE, TRY TO PREACH OR TEACH AROUND THESE TRUTHS.

33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
The Importance of Watching
34 “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.
35 For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth.
AND HERE’S THE “PRAY-ALWAYS” ADMONITION FROM THE LIPS OF OUR LORD:
36 Watch therefore, and 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.”

That being the situation, it would be THEO-logical to assume that our Lord, in His RELENTLESS MERCY, would be working to prepare us to WATCH and PRAY ALWAYS. He is FOR us making it, and standing successfully, by His grace, before His throne of judgment.

SO HE IS ON THE MOVE and CALLS US TO BE ON THE ALERT.
Our time in prayer, and understanding the prayer context, is critical.
We do need to reclaim the LIVELINESS OF COMMUNICATION WITH GOD. It is WONDERFUL
WHEN and
WHY and
HOW
our Great God speaks to His people and reveals Himself to His people.
That will be a lot of our focus this week, and maybe rolling into next week as well.

There wants/needs/deserves to be an ANTICIPATION OF THE PRESENCE OF GOD, as we make room for Him, both in our TIME and also in our HEARTS OF FAITH.
And those places are blessed as we see how God has spoken to people throughout the entire age.

I am very much trying to increase my personal pray-always awareness throughout the day and the night.

Part of God’s never-changing persona is that He is ALWAYS mystifying and magical and marvelous, and loves surprising His people.

I am personally marveling how the Lord has been dealing w me during the preparations for this class, as I prepare, not only my notes, but myself. It continues to be a season of huge challenge for me, as I press into what He is doing and how He has been communicating w me.

FOR ME, IN THIS SEASON ( I say this appreciating your season and your walk w Him is YOUR season and YOUR walk w Him) – one thing is that God has been dealing w me heavily in the place of DREAMS.

DREAMS and PRAYER are not contradictory, and I want to demonstrate that scripturally.

FIRST AND FOREMOST – look at this prophetic declaration BY PETER, in explaining the UPPER ROOM birthing of Holy Spirit indwelling – the announcement of a new season of intimacy between GOD and MAN, ushered in w fire. Peter was quoting Joel:
Acts 2:16-21
16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17 ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
Your young men shall see visions,
Your old men shall dream dreams.
18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days;
And they shall prophesy.
19 I will show wonders in heaven above
And signs in the earth beneath:
Blood and fire and vapor of smoke.
20 The sun shall be turned into darkness,
And the moon into blood,
Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord.
21 And it shall come to pass
That whoever calls on the name of the Lord
Shall be saved.’

The “great and awesome day of the Lord” is the Lord’s RETURN – not His birth or even His crucifixion. THAT being the case, Peter was in some ways pulling these verses down to explain the BIRTHING of the SEASON – but we would be wise to see in this declaration as pointing to INCREASE of these components as we get closer to the real “great and awesome day of the Lord” – including increase in signs and wonders and dreams and visions.

Because of the 24/7 nature of God, GOD TAKES YOUR SLEEP TIME/DREAM TIME SERIOUSLY, as should you. Let’s look into this truth, both to see how it might factor in communications FROM God as well as even communications TO God, both of which therefore qualify as PRAYER.

(me, B.C.)

I am convinced PRAYER INCLUDES on your knees or in whatever posture of reverence you might assume, BUT also that Prayer – communication dialogue w God, ought to rightly include ALL those other times in our days.

CRAZY BALAAM had a few things right:
Numbers 22:18-21
18 Then Balaam answered and said to the servants of Balak, “Though Balak were to give me his house full of silver and gold, I could not go beyond the word of the Lord my God, to do less or more.
19 Now therefore, please, you also stay here tonight, that I may know what more the Lord will say to me.”
20 And God came to Balaam at night and said to him, “If the men come to call you, rise and go with them; but only the word which I speak to you—that you shall do.”
21 So Balaam rose in the morning, saddled his donkey, and went with the princes of Moab.

FAR MORE DEFINITE IS THIS DISCOURSE – God coming to Solomon and BOTH OF THEM dialoguing in a DREAM, and its importance to God Himself.
1 Kings 3:3-15
3 And Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David, except that he sacrificed and burned incense at the high places.
(so we see God still working in the life of Solomon, even w Solomon NOT living as he should have been. That is ENCOURAGING to us, in that perfection is not a requirement, and yet the outcome of Solomon’s life ought to seriously provoke us to do better than he did).
4 Now the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place: Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar.
5 At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask! What shall I give you?”
6 And Solomon said: “You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in truth, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with You; You have continued this great kindness for him, and You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day.
7 Now, O Lord my God, You have made Your servant king instead of my father David, but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in.
8 And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a great people, too numerous to be numbered or counted.
9 Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”
10 The speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing.
11 Then God said to him: “Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice,
12 behold, I have done (God’s instant timing) according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you.
13 And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days.
14 So if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.”
15 Then Solomon awoke; and indeed it had been a dream. And he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, offered up burnt offerings, offered peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants.

1 Kings 9:1-9
God’s Second Appearance to Solomon
1 And it came to pass, when Solomon had finished building the house of the Lord and the king’s house, and all Solomon’s desire which he wanted to do,
2 that the Lord appeared to Solomon the second time, as He had appeared to him at Gibeon.
3 And the Lord said to him: “I have heard your prayer and your supplication that you have made before Me; I have consecrated this house which you have built to put My name there forever, and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually.
4 Now if you walk before Me as your father David walked, in integrity of heart and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments,
5 then I will establish the throne of your kingdom over Israel forever, as I promised David your father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man on the throne of Israel.’
6 But if you or your sons at all turn from following Me, and do not keep My commandments and My statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods and worship them,
7 then I will cut off Israel from the land which I have given them; and this house which I have consecrated for My name I will cast out of My sight. Israel will be a proverb and a byword among all peoples.

1 KINGS 9 IS PARALLEL TO 2 CHRON 7:14
2 Chronicles 7:12-14
(God’s Second Appearance to Solomon)
12 Then the Lord appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. 13 When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people,
(we have been standing on the promise of a DREAM DIALOGUE between God and Solomon, since it occurred. How can we blow off our own dreams?)
14 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.

AND THEN THE CONFIRMATION OF THE CRITICAL IMPORTANCE OF THOSE DREAM DIALOGUES:
1 Kings 11:6-10
6 Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and did not fully follow the Lord, as did his father David.
7 Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill that is east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon.
8 And he did likewise for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.
9 So the Lord became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned from the Lord God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice,
10 and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods; but he did not keep what the Lord had commanded.

So what we are seeing is that our ALL-THE-TIME AWARENESS OF THE PRESENCE and POTENTIAL for dialogue w God will bless us and keep us ON COURSE and IN THE SPIRIT.

PSALM 17
1 Hear a just cause, O Lord,
Attend to my cry;
Give ear to my prayer which is not from deceitful lips.
2 Let my vindication come from Your presence;
Let Your eyes look on the things that are upright.
3 You have tested my heart;
You have visited me in the night;
You have tried me and have found nothing;
I have purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
4 Concerning the works of men,
By the word of Your lips,
I have kept away from the paths of the destroyer.
5 Uphold my steps in Your paths,
That my footsteps may not slip.
6 I have called upon You, for You will hear me, O God;
Incline Your ear to me, and hear my speech.
7 Show Your marvelous lovingkindness by Your right hand,
O You who save those who trust in You
From those who rise up against them.
8 Keep me as the apple of Your eye;
Hide me under the shadow of Your wings,
9 From the wicked who oppress me,
From my deadly enemies who surround me.
…(then a descriptive of the men of this world)…

Verse 15 COULD be speaking to resurrection – waking up in eternity w God, but giving some respect to verse 3 we might also consider this the “morning daily wake-up” – coming out of the night-test and knowing all things are right w God.

15 As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness;
I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.

Psalms 63:6
6 When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.

AND understanding God dealing w ALL MEN – here’s the “mother of all prophetic dreams”, then interpreted by young Daniel in Babylon – which catapulted him to prominence and position, and set in motion the ONLY written account in scripture of a KING’s salvation adventure, and also provides for all of us THE spiritual framework for the ENTIRE AGE IN WHICH WE LIVE, culminating with the purposeful and supernatural collapse of the governments of man, by God Himself.

Daniel 2:1-45
Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream
1 Now in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; and his spirit was so troubled that his sleep left him.
2 Then the king gave the command to call the magicians, the astrologers, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans to tell the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king.
3 And the king said to them, “I have had a dream, and my spirit is anxious to know the dream.”
4 Then the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic, “O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will give the interpretation.”

SUCH A DEAL
5 The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, “My decision is firm: if you do not make known the dream to me, and its interpretation, you shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made an ash heap.
6 However, if you tell the dream and its interpretation, you shall receive from me gifts, rewards, and great honor. Therefore tell me the dream and its interpretation.”
7 They answered again and said, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will give its interpretation.”
8 The king answered and said, “I know for certain that you would gain time, because you see that my decision is firm:
9 if you do not make known the dream to me, there is only one decree for you! For you have agreed to speak lying and corrupt words before me till the time has changed. Therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that you can give me its interpretation.”
10 The Chaldeans answered the king, and said, “There is not a man on earth who can tell the king’s matter; therefore no king, lord, or ruler has ever asked such things of any magician, astrologer, or Chaldean.
11 It is a difficult thing that the king requests, and there is no other who can tell it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.”
12 For this reason the king was angry and very furious, and gave the command to destroy all the wise men of Babylon.
13 So the decree went out, and they began killing the wise men; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them.

14 Then with counsel and wisdom Daniel answered Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon;
15 he answered and said to Arioch the king’s captain, “Why is the decree from the king so urgent?” Then Arioch made the decision known to Daniel.
16 So Daniel went in and asked the king to give him time, that he might tell the king the interpretation.
17 Then Daniel went to his house, and made the decision known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions,
18 that they might seek mercies from the God of heaven concerning this secret, so that Daniel and his companions might not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.
19 Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision.
(FIRST THINGS FIRST: Praising and thanking God – could this also have taken place during the night vision?)
19 (continued) So Daniel blessed the God of heaven.
20 Daniel answered and said:
“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
For wisdom and might are His.
21 And He changes the times and the seasons;
He removes kings and raises up kings;
He gives wisdom to the wise
And knowledge to those who have understanding.
22 He reveals deep and secret things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
And light dwells with Him.
23 “I thank You and praise You,
O God of my fathers;
You have given me wisdom and might,
And have now made known to me what we asked of You,
For You have made known to us the king’s demand.”

24 Therefore Daniel went to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to destroy the wise men of Babylon. He went and said thus to him: “Do not destroy the wise men of Babylon; take me before the king, and I will tell the king the interpretation.”
25 Then Arioch quickly brought Daniel before the king, and (CONTRARY TO DANIEL’S HUMILITY) said thus to him, “I have found a man of the captives of Judah, who will make known to the king the interpretation.”
26 The king answered and said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, “Are you able to make known to me the dream which I have seen, and its interpretation?”
27 Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, “The secret which the king has demanded, the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, and the soothsayers cannot declare to the king.
28 But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Your dream, and the visions of your head upon your bed, were these:
29 As for you, O king, thoughts came to your mind while on your bed, about what would come to pass after this; and He who reveals secrets has made known to you what will be.
30 But as for me, this secret has not been revealed to me because I have more wisdom than anyone living, but for our sakes who make known the interpretation to the king, and that you may know the thoughts of your heart.
31 “You, O king, were watching; and behold, a great image! This great image, whose splendor was excellent, stood before you; and its form was awesome.
32 This image’s head was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze,
33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay.
34 You watched while a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces.
35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.

36 “This is the dream. Now we will tell the interpretation of it before the king.

37 You, O king, are a king of kings. For the God of heaven has given you a kingdom, power, strength, and glory;
38 and wherever the children of men dwell, or the beasts of the field and the birds of the heaven, He has given them into your hand, and has made you ruler over them all—you are this head of gold.

39 But after you shall arise another kingdom inferior to yours
(INFERIOR IN THAT THE RULING HEAD DID NOT HAVE AS MUCH ABSOLUTE POWER. THAT WAS THE MEDO-PERSIAN EMPIRE – and we know Darius was up all night looking for some LEGAL WAY to free Daniel from the lion’s den); then another (GREECE), a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth.
40 And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron (ROME), inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything; and like iron that crushes, that kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the others.
41 Whereas you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, the kingdom shall be divided (MIXED SYSTEMS OF RULE – as we see throughout the earth); yet the strength of the iron shall be in it, just as you saw the iron mixed with ceramic clay.
42 And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile (constant flux and change as people battle for position and authority, with the populace asserting itself and powerful men jockeying for control within these “mixed environments” of clay and iron. The results continue to be roughness and strength and conflict, and less value than gold or silver or bronze).
43 As you saw iron mixed with ceramic clay, they will mingle with the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, just as iron does not mix with clay.

There’s been lots of theories and thoughts about the FEET of the STATUE – many thinking the feet represented (ONLY) DEMOCRACY – anointed ones along w the common masses. Some go so far as to say the FEET are America. I don’t know how they conjure that up.
The image I “borrowed” (for the slide) had the feet as the restored Roman Empire, since many contend Rome (and the Roman Catholic Church), almost ALONE, is the BEAST.
Others feel the FEET are a combined European power group – but there too I tend to not fully disagree.
I don’t think our end times grid should be arrogantly Euro-centric. This is a middle eastern book and in fact the very nations specifically listed in related verses are primarily middle eastern.

My view of the FEET is about a worldwide order of many nations, including European nations and likely America, along with kings and nations from the far north (Ezekiel) and elsewhere. If you want to embrace all of the obvious prophecies re the final invasion of Israel, then you need to include Zechariah 12-14, Ezek 36-39, lots of Isaiah (clearly pointing to what was the Assyrian Empire)

44 And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. 45 Inasmuch as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold—the great God has made known to the king what will come to pass after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation is sure.”

AN OBSERVATION RE THE 24/7 OF GOD:
During the World War 2, my dad worked in the ship yards, wiring battleships. The urgency of the battle had 3 work crews, each spending 8 hours, working around the clock, 24/7, because of the urgency of the hour. Our nation was at war.
I believe we should figure that God, knowing the lateness of the hour prior to His return, would want to be speaking w us, and having US speak w Him, 24/7.
Psalm 110, as well as countless other eschatological verses, speak to us of the end-of-age conflict as being a war of global and unprecedented magnitude. 24/7 preparation and readiness would make great sense.

I THINK WE’D DO WELL TO ANTICIPATE THE LORD SPEAKING W AT ALL TIMES. That mindset and preparation of our hearts will place us into more effective place of readiness.

WE’VE LOOKED AT THESE SCRIPTURES before, but I think I am understanding more and more what they are pointing to for OUR LIVES, especially in THESE TIMES
2 Corinthians 10:4-6
4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,
5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,
6 and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.
(I am thinking the “disobedience” Paul is talking about is what is NATURALLY IN US, and that he is pointing to a Spirit-empowered and willingly Spirit-possessed life where all of our disobedience thoughts, contradicting the Lord’s thoughts, are taken captive)

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray without ceasing,
18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

I UNDERSTAND THIS in principle. I personally am working to get there.

All scripture NKJV

WEEK 7

Prayer In These Times – week seven

My wife and I will be attending a worship conference in South Carolina next week, so this will be the last session of this class. The ORIGINAL plan had us going through the last Thursday of August, but this Thursday, 18th, is the NEXT to the last Thursday. I’ll leave it w Pastor Daniel as to what next Thursday might look like. And I am confident the church has a good plan for Thursdays as we roll into the fall months.

Last week we were speaking of God communicating w men IN THEIR DREAM STATE – to encourage US to anticipate even that communication w God.

And I’ve had good reports of folks having dreams. Yea God!

I don’t think we’ll be going through this second dream tonight, but I wrote it out in the notes since I mentioned it last week, and it is additional confirmation, not only of God’s mercy as well as His serious dealings with ALL men, but also it’s a great confirmation of the priority God puts on DREAMS as prophetic communication, so that we might anticipate God speaking to us in dreams – even to the point of maybe sometimes being able to dialogue BACK to God in our dreams, as Solomon did.

NEBUCHADNEZZAR’S SECOND DREAM
ONLY BECAUSE I DON’T WANT TO LEAVE ANYONE on the edge of their seat re Nebuchadnezzar and his second dream – we will go through it sort of quickly.

That king plays a huge prophetic role in the master plan of prophecy for this age. King of Babylon – he represents the ultimate and complete image of absolute power by MAN. That same “spirit of Babylon” will prevail all the way through til the end of the book of Revelation, at which time we are told “BABYLON is fallen”.

Last week we looked at the statue representing the kingdoms of age. Daniel, always a man of prayer, received NOT ONLY the interpretation of the king’s dream, but also the dream itself.

This second dream, King Nebuchadnezzar TOLD to his wisemen, and then finally called in the “A TEAM” – Daniel.

Daniel 4
Nebuchadnezzar writes out his testimony – praising God:
1 Nebuchadnezzar the king, To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you.
2 I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me.
3 How great are His signs,
And how mighty His wonders!
His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
And His dominion is from generation to generation.

4 I, Nebuchadnezzar, was at rest in my house, and flourishing in my palace.
5 I saw a dream which made me afraid, and the thoughts on my bed and the visions of my head troubled me.
6 Therefore I issued a decree to bring in all the wise men of Babylon before me, that they might make known to me the interpretation of the dream.
7 Then the magicians, the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers came in, and I told them the dream; but they did not make known to me its interpretation.
8 But at last Daniel came before me (his name is Belteshazzar, according to the name of my god; in him is the Spirit of the Holy God), and I told the dream before him, saying:
9 “Belteshazzar, chief of the magicians, because I know that the Spirit of the Holy God is in you, and no secret troubles you, explain to me the visions of my dream that I have seen, and its interpretation.

THE DREAM TOLD TO DANIEL
10 “These were the visions of my head while on my bed:
I was looking, and behold,
A tree in the midst of the earth,
And its height was great.
11 The tree grew and became strong;
Its height reached to the heavens,
And it could be seen to the ends of all the earth.

12 Its leaves were lovely,
Its fruit abundant,
And in it was food for all.
The beasts of the field found shade under it,
The birds of the heavens dwelt in its branches,
And all flesh was fed from it.
13 “I saw in the visions of my head while on my bed, and there was a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven.
14 He cried aloud and said thus:
“Chop down the tree and cut off its branches,
Strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit.
Let the beasts get out from under it,
And the birds from its branches.

15 Nevertheless leave the stump and roots in the earth,
Bound with a band of iron and bronze,
In the tender grass of the field.
Let it be wet with the dew of heaven,
And let him graze with the beasts
On the grass of the earth.

16 Let his heart be changed from that of a man,
Let him be given the heart of a beast,
And let seven times pass over him.
17 ‘This decision is by the decree of the watchers,
And the sentence by the word of the holy ones,
In order that the living may know
That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men,
Gives it to whomever He will,
And sets over it the lowest of men.’
18 “This dream I, King Nebuchadnezzar, have seen. Now you, Belteshazzar, declare its interpretation, since all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation; but you are able, for the Spirit of the Holy God is in you.”

THEN A NARRATIVE, likely also by Nebuchadnezzar – as to what happens.
19 Then Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, was astonished for a time, and his thoughts troubled him. So the king spoke, and said, “Belteshazzar, do not let the dream or its interpretation trouble you.” Belteshazzar answered and said, “My lord, may the dream concern those who hate you, and its interpretation concern your enemies!
20 “The tree that you saw, which grew and became strong, whose height reached to the heavens and which could be seen by all the earth,
21 whose leaves were lovely and its fruit abundant, in which was food for all, under which the beasts of the field dwelt, and in whose branches the birds of the heaven had their home—
22 it is you, O king, who have grown and become strong; for your greatness has grown and reaches to the heavens, and your dominion to the end of the earth. 23 “And inasmuch as the king saw a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven and saying, ‘Chop down the tree and destroy it, but leave its stump and roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze in the tender grass of the field; let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let him graze with the beasts of the field, till seven times pass over him’;
24 this is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the Most High, which has come upon my lord the king:
25 They shall drive you from men, your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make you eat grass like oxen. They shall wet you with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.
26 “And inasmuch as they gave the command to leave the stump and roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be assured to you, after you come to know that Heaven rules.
27 Therefore, O king, let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins by being righteous, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor. Perhaps there may be a lengthening of your prosperity.” (HELP ME JOHN CALVIN – here’s a MAYBE – contingent upon a man’s decision)

(Likely still written as an honest account BY Nebuchadnezzar himself, speaking in the third person about himself)

28 All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar.
29 At the end of the twelve months he was walking about the royal palace of Babylon.
30 The king spoke, saying, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?”
31 While the word was still in the king’s mouth, a voice fell from heaven: “King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you!
32 And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen; and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.”
33 That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Nebuchadnezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws. Nebuchadnezzar Praises God

DEFINITELY Nebuchadnezzar’s personal testimony:
34 And at the end of the time I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever: For His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
And His kingdom is from generation to generation.
35 All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing;
He does according to His will in the army of heaven
And among the inhabitants of the earth.
No one can restrain His hand
Or say to Him, “What have You done?”
36 At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my honor and splendor returned to me. My counselors and nobles resorted to me, I was restored to my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me.
37 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down.

NEBUCHADNEZZAR -.THAT is the ONE personal biblical testimony of a sovereign autocrat being so humbled that he finally comes to the God of Israel.
THAT is also another testimony of God using prophetic dreams to deal w people. And that autocrat stood as the head of the empire that FINALLY comes crashing down at the end of the Revelation conflict.

Revelation 14:6-8
The Proclamations of Three Angels
6 Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth—to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people—
7 saying with a loud voice, “Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.”
8 And another angel followed, saying, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she has made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.”

God is on the move, 24/7.

OK – back to us and now and looking forward to our Lord’s return, as people call to be PRE-PARED (cut in advance, circumcised hearts and minds)
Personally, my own prayer awareness, the “PRAY ALWAYS/WITHOUT CEASING” admonishment has taken on greater meaning for me. I am quite confident the Lord’s plan is for the saints to be in constant communication w Him. And I believe the times in which we live, both scripturally as well as by our own awareness, would confirm that it’s getting more and more critical to be in alignment w the plans of God. RIGHT TIME/RIGHT PLACE.
“CO-Incidences”. Coordinated Incidences orchestrated by God so that the Romans 8 spirit led sons (and daughters) of God would be on post, on point, in position.

We concluded last week w me mentioning this historic truth during WW2: my dad worked in the shipyards, wiring battleships. The urgency of the battle had 3 work crews, each spending 8 hours, working around the clock, 24/7, because of the urgency of the hour. Our nation was at war.
I believe we should figure that God, knowing the lateness of the hour prior to His return, would want to be speaking w us, and having US speak w Him, 24/7.

I THINK WE’D DO WELL TO ANTICIPATE THE LORD SPEAKING W US AT ALL TIMES/ANY TIME. That mindset and preparation of our hearts will place us into a more effective place of readiness.

Here is Jesus’ instruction to His disciples:
Luke 21:25-36
25 “And there will be signs in the sun, in the moon, and in the stars; and on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring;
26 men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
27 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
28 Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”
29 Then He spoke to them a parable: “Look at the fig tree, and all the trees.
30 When they are already budding, you see and know for yourselves that summer is now near.
31 So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.
32 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all things take place.
33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
34 “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.
35 For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth.

THE TAKEAWAY FROM SEVEN WEEKS:
36 Watch therefore, and 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.”

How clear and concise is verse 36?

It speaks to me not only of our assured EFFECTIVENESS in winning souls for God in the those most trying times – it brings it home to our very own success being in our watching and praying always.

Verse 35 tells us that the situations on earth, both the “seas roaring” (natural events) as well as the necessary addressing of sinfulness (carousing and drunkenness) and also the intensified struggle simply to LIVE (“cares of this life”) will come on AS A POTENTIAL SNARE on all who dwell on the face of the whole earth.

At the risk of flying in the face of teachings that the saints are out of here before severe, troubling things occur at the end of the age, and only the unsaved, and maybe the newly-saved Jews will be on the planet – I think we’ve looked deep enough into scripture to recognize God’s end-of-age “shaking plan” is purposed to get the unsaved to cry out to Him, and He has plans to leave His army of volunteer lovers ON EARTH – surely delivered from the final wrath and yet surviving by His grace during the troubling, so that we might give a testimony to the desperate world and lead as many as possible to Christ – through righteous living, prayer, a testimony of light, etc.

We are called and destined to be that praying army.

ONCE AGAIN:
Psalms 110
1 The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at My right hand,
Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”
2 The Lord shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion.
Rule in the midst of Your enemies!
3 Your people shall be volunteers
In the day of Your power;
In the beauties of holiness, from the womb of the morning,
You have the dew of Your youth.
4 The Lord has sworn
And will not relent,
“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek.”
5 The Lord is at Your right hand;
He shall execute kings in the day of His wrath.
6 He shall judge among the nations,
He shall fill the places with dead bodies,
He shall execute the heads of many countries.
7 He shall drink of the brook by the wayside;
Therefore He shall lift up the head.

I so very much appreciate the distinctions between WORSHIP and PRAISE and the bent-knee place of PRAYER – be it silent or spoken, or in a spiritual language of tongues – or even standing up or laying on your face. There are different postures and different focuses.

But in the broadest sense of the word – PRAYER is functionally COMMUNICATION WITH GOD – and in that light we would better understand what PRAY WITHOUT CEASING looks like in our own lives.

I want to get out of the compartmentalization of my relationship w God – my “hour of prayer” being concluded and now the day is mine.
The day is His.
This is the day the Lord has made.
I don’t see any place in scripture where we are invited to take a sabbatical from our walks w God, and in fact I see a declaration of greater INTIMACY when there’s greater URGENCY.

A GREAT PSALM -psalm 57 – confirming INTIMACY during URGENCY – concluding w praise and declaration of His goodness. but first let’s look again at how our Lord describes the times prior to His return – fully giving room IF you don’t think THESE times are THOSE times, then at least let’s all agree that the times in which we live are increasingly more troublesome. Foxnews confirms that.

JESUS’ words again (this time from Matthew instead of Luke – but remembering the verses we read earlier in Luke 21 – men’s hearts failing them, praying always, etc.):
Matthew 24:6-14
6 And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9 “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake.
10 And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.
11 Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.
12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
13 But he who endures to the end shall be saved.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then (at that time, not 2,000+ years later) the end will come.

so let’s read this w an eye towards the trying events still to come.
THE PSALMIST’S declaration of INTIMACY in URGENCY:
Psalms 57
1 Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me!
For my soul trusts in You;
And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge,
Until these calamities have passed by.
2 I will cry out to God Most High,
To God who performs all things for me.
3 He shall send from heaven and save me;
He reproaches the one who would swallow me up.
Selah
God shall send forth His mercy and His truth.
TROUBLE ALL AROUND
4 My soul is among lions;
I lie among the sons of men
Who are set on fire,
Whose teeth are spears and arrows,
And their tongue a sharp sword.
PRAISE BECAUSE HE IS WORTHY – PRIOR TO THE DELIVERANCE
5 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
Let Your glory be above all the earth.
6 They have prepared a net for my steps;
My soul is bowed down;
They have dug a pit before me;
Into the midst of it they themselves have fallen.
Selah

SONG, WORSHIP PRAISE
7 My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and give praise.
8 Awake, my glory!
Awake, lute and harp!
EARLY RISING TO PRAISE AND PRAY
I will awaken the dawn.

EVANGELISTIC WORSHIP AND PRAISE
9 I will praise You, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing to You among the nations.
10 For Your mercy reaches unto the heavens,
And Your truth unto the clouds.
11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
Let Your glory be above all the earth.

IN QUICK REVIEW:
• Prayer has always been our HOT-LINE to God.
• Successful folks in the scriptures were men and women of prayer.
• Prayer is time SPENT. It is supposed to cost you something.
• Failed folks were those who did things their own way – even religious things (Ex: Saul forcing himself and offering a sacrifice).
• Prayer is time to speak to God and for God to speak to us.
• Our God doesn’t need us preaching to Him, although He even instructs us to remind Him of His own promises.
• BTW – our brethren don’t need us preaching to them either, in prayer “TEACHING PRAYER” typically isn’t prayer. There’s a time for every purpose under heaven, and prayer time is not teach-time.
• Jesus so prioritized the Holy Spirit baptism and anointing and infilling He instructed His own disciples not to even leave Jerusalem until they experienced that baptism. We still need that baptism, and that’s a baptism to repeat and repeat again and again.
• There are specific things we are told to pray for (EX: the peace of Jerusalem, our leaders, etc.).
• We can pray w confidence and effectiveness when the word is in us and we are praying according to the will of God.
• The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Our righteous living is solid foundation of assurance that are prayers are being heard.

We win.

Ending with an encouragement and a question WE can answer by how we choose to live our lives every day, every moment:

Luke 18:1, 7-8
1 Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart,
(Our Lord speaks of a stubborn woman and an unjust judge, who gives in to her consistent and stubborn appeals to him.

COMPARISON BY CONTRAST – our God is not an UNJUST JUDGE.
He is a FAIR JUDGE and also a LOVING FATHER

7 And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?
8 I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”

Jesus wasn’t questioning whether there would be CHURCH or “Christians” – He was asking whether there would truly be people of faith, who believed and walked according to the plans and purposes of God, in and by His Spirit.

THAT should be our prayer.

All scripture NKJV

Posted in Everything, Prayer, Prayer In These Times - Summer 2016 - Class Notes | Leave a comment

The Chanukah/Christmas Confluence. Cool, but…

A dear friend whose heart is tender towards her God, kindly sent me a lovely Blue Mountain Christmas card. I wrote her the following (below, with some grammatical and minor edits), in sincere hope that her true hunger would take her into the Tanach scriptures to discover the plan set forth from the beginning.

Hi ——,
Thanks for the Blue Mountain Christmas card. Lovely!
It’s an interesting confluence this year, Christmas and Chanukah being celebrated the same days. The magic falls down a little/lot though, when one researches and discovers that Christmas is functionally a mix-master blender of winter solstice celebrations and the birth of Christ.

Biblically, Luke 1:5-8 establishes John the Baptist’s dad, Zechariah (named after the Tanach prophet) being from the division of Abijah, and serving in the temple when he has an angelic visitation promising a son for him and his wife. Tracking the Jewish calendar and the scheduling of priestly service (including the three annual sabbaths when ALL the priests were required at the temple – two of which occurred prior to Zech showing up) would place baby John’s (Jochanan, most likely) conception shortly thereafter, and his birth around Passover – which is fitting seeing as how other scriptures tell us he came in the spirit of Elijah (Matt 11:14, et al) – and we Jews of course realize a place-setting still remains, in faith, for Elijah during the Seder. Then, Mary (Miriam being her Hebrew name) meets Elizabeth during her sixth month of pregnancy, which places the Holy Spirit conception of Yeshua (Jesus)……:

Isaiah 7:14
14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.

….around Chanukah (the declared Light of the world conceived during the Festival of Lights) and then would point to Tabernacles (Sukkot) as the time of birth of Yeshua. Emmanuel, God with us, on Tabernacles (which means the same thing). Sounds more accurate to me and many others, than the winter solstice, Santa Claus, late-December light-a-tree, etc. The God of perfect timing, always. As the Byrds sang – Ecclesiastes 3:1.

Most of “the church”, in alignment and biblically ignorant cahoots with the secular world, has sadly done a remarkable job clouding the perfect plans of the God of Israel to provide His Messiah for all of us. Yeshua’s birth was Advent #1. Stay tuned. Advent #2 is coming up; hence the current worldwide shaking work:

Haggai 2:6-7
6 “For thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Once more (it is a little while) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land;
7 and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the Lord of hosts.

All that said, and to not be Scrooge-like, TODAY our daughters and hubbies and 7 grand-kiddos are coming over as we celebrate and unwrap GIFTS and eat a festive meal (including latkes!) as our tradition, the next few days sort of being a traveling road show to a few other homes in our family tribe (in-laws, etc.). It’s all good. Birth of Messiah, albeit nearly two months late, remains a good thing. Even His first-century all-Jewish disciples didn’t get the then-clouded two-advents plan. It’s clearer now. And it will become clearer,

Blessings to you this season.
1. The family e-card is attached.
2. My anonymous website of a Jewish guy, fully convinced Yeshua is Messiah for all, is: www.ez3728.com

Love ya.
Happy/Merry Both,

(All scripture NKJV)

Posted in End Times Related, Everything, God's Word, Israel, Jesus, Old Testament, Timing | Leave a comment

Solid article re Sodom and Gomorrah

I don’t think I’ve ever simply reposted an online writing at this site before, but this one is worthy of reposting, and of reading. Our great and righteous God continues to love on mankind, continues to deal with us all re our corporate as well as individual condition, and has not only told us through the prophets of His future plans, but has also confirmed His prior dealings with mankind by graciously leaving us archaeological evidence.

This article is informative, insightful, and confirming of God’s truths. There are some reasonable speculations, which I consider as having been put forth by the writer based upon greater topical knowledge than my own. I cannot speak to any other thoughts or opinions or theology of the writer on his own site. Having read this one piece, I can say this is good stuff.

The more we understand re the fullness of God’s divine personality and character, as well as the accuracy of His eternal word, the better established we will be, and the less apt we will be to get offended when God reveals Himself and does what His word has already declared, in advance.

http://www.bibleistrue.com/qna/pqna34.htm

Posted in End Times Related, Everything, Fear of the Lord, God's Word, Israel, Old Testament, Righteousness, Sin, Understanding & Knowing God | Leave a comment