One Praying Prophet

As Daniel eight ended we saw one sick prophet. He had seen the future, and it was not pleasant for his people. There was the little horn, the Old Testament antichrist Antiochus Epiphanes. Followed by the Antichrist of the end times. These men would seek to utterly stamp out the Jews. They would not be successful, but witnessing the havoc they would wreak caused Daniel to faint and become ill.
This sick prophet looks to his Lord in prayer. That’s how chapter nine begins. When this chapter is preached or referenced, the focus is typically limited to the prophecy of verses 24-27. But Daniel’s prayer precedes the prophecy that he records, and that prayer occupies verses 4-19 of the chapter! Verses 20-23 are snippets of a conversation between Daniel and Gabriel concerning the prayer.

Prophecy is no Substitute for Prayer

The prayer covers more than twice the amount of inspired ink as the prophecy. That’s a big deal, and that will be our focus this evening, as well as next Wednesday for certain. Daniel was a praying man. We have already learned that, and not just from chapter six and the lion’s den. Prayer has been his consistent pattern from the beginning of the book. He is an example for us to follow, and his prayer in chapter nine is a model of intercessory prayer. 
This one praying prophet demonstrates seven principles of intercessory prayer for us to imitate. We will not work through all seven in one sermon, but here they all are in one sentence:
Intercessory prayer seeks to know God’s plan, desiring its fulfillment no matter the personal cost, and is for the sake of others, strengthened by confession of sin, dependent on God’s character and all for God’s glory!

Together Again!

Please join us tonight in person at 7pm. Our SHinE Kids (K-5) and G.O.E Teens (6th-12th) will also meet at 7pm in the Family Life Center. The adult prayer time and Bible study may also be viewed at


Spread It Out

2 Kings 18:30, “Neither let Hezekiah make you trust in the LORD, saying, The LORD will surely deliver us, and this city shall not be delivered into the hand of the king of Assyria.”
Not only does the fool say in his heart there is no God (Psalm 14:1), but he seeks to ruin the trust that others have in the Lord. The only thing more foolish is to be persuaded by such nonsense. When confronted with the blasphemous boasts and threats of the Assyrian Rabshakeh, Hezekiah went to the Temple and literally “spread it before the Lord” (2 Kings 19:14). It is better to trust in the Lord than put confidence in man, even one with a massive army and thousands of chariots. Hezekiah and his people trusted Jehovah. Their enemies were defeated. They were saved. God was glorified. Trust Him today!


Pray Constantly… Wait. What?

1 Thessalonians 5:17, “Pray without ceasing.”
This is not a command for perpetual kneeling or living with our eyes shut only talking to God. To pray “without ceasing” is a life marked by a continual attitude of prayer. To pray constantly is to stay in continual communication with the Lord. Are you continually aware of His presence in all of life; not only at church meetings, but at work, at school, at play, when you go out with friends, when you are alone, when you travel and there is no one there to hold you accountable?
We are always dependent on God, no matter what. Let’s live like we understand that. Trust Him in all things, and you will pray without ceasing.


Pride or Humility?

James 4:3, “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”

We must always ask God to rid our hearts of selfish desires so that we may trust Him to provide what we need, when needed, and in the amount we need. Pride makes us self-focused, causing us to be certain that we deserve all we can see, touch, or imagine. The remedy for self-centeredness is humility before God. We need nothing but His approval, and that is ours in Christ Jesus. Our position in Christ must be reflected in our practical living before others. When we are led by the Holy Spirit instead of sinful desires we will realize that the things we have coveted are nothing but mud pies compared to the spread set by our heavenly Father.


Are You a “We”?

1 John 3:22, “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.”
This has to be one of the most remarkable prayer passages in scripture, but we must understand that this promise is not made to every professing believer. Reread the verse, and ask yourself if you are one of the “we’s.” There are four:
  1. we ask…
  2. we receive…because – do not fail to notice this promise’s condition
  3. we keep…and
  4. [we] do. (This one is understood.)
So then, trust God’s Word, seek to keep His Word by the power of His Spirit, and endeavor to please Him in every aspect of your life. This enables our prayers to be confidently offered to God through Christ in the Spirit. This glorifies God. What glorifies God is always best for us. 
Ask yourself. Is “we” me?


Trust His “No”

Deuteronomy 3:26, “But the LORD was wroth with me for your sakes, and would not hear me: and the LORD said unto me, Let it suffice thee; speak no more unto me of this matter.”

There are occasions when God will not hear our prayers. One reason why is disobedience. The people of Israel were not easy to lead. They were never content, consistently rebellious, and always fickle. Still, Moses interceded on their behalf. Every time. At the waters of Meribah the people yet again quarreled and complained with Moses about their need. They didn’t trust him or God. Yet again Moses prayed for them, and once again God miraculously provided water. But here Moses overstepped (Numbers 20:7-13; Psalm 106:32-33). God will not share His glory with another, not even Moses. We must trust God’s “No” as much as we do His “Yes.” Both are for our good and His glory.


Living on Prayer

Ephesians 6:18, “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;”
Who has the time to always pray when most of us are so busy we barely or rarely pray? Here is some brutal honesty. Being “too busy to pray” is not a thing, but being too lazy or so backslidden as to not pray is real and deadly. Followers of Christ are in constant spiritual warfare, and if we do not joyfully obey this command, then we expose our neck to the enemy. Let’s order our hearts according to God’s Word so that our very lives become a prayer. Make prayer your life and your life a prayer while living in a frenetic world in desperate need of the Gospel.

 Three Prayer Tips:

  • Set aside time daily to pray. This doesn’t have to be a colossal amount of time, just a daily amount.
  • Pray throughout the day. If there is a need or a need to praise, offer it right then and there. This doesn’t require a show or everyone else’s participation. Just do it.
  • Pray “in the moment.” If someone specifically asks you to pray for a need, offer one with them in the moment if possible.


First of all, Pray

Luke 18:1, “And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;”
The Lord Jesus thought prayer was important. He preached of prayer’s importance, and practiced what He preached. The gospels are packed with accounts of Jesus praying publicly and privately. During His earthly ministry God the Son remained connected with God the Father through prayer. His followers should do likewise. Life lived for Christ is full of joy and difficulty. The struggle in all aspects of life is real, but we are not left alone. A heart that trusts God will first of all pray and the heart that prays will be strengthened to trust God, no matter what. Don’t give up. Make prayer your first response.