“When God has something very great to accomplish for his church, it is His will that there should precede it the extraordinary prayers of his people.”Jonathan Edwards – #AwakeAmerica2020 – https://www.awakeamerica2020.com
Brothers, here are some thoughts from last Saturday’s prayer meeting to pray about this week.
Pray that we have our minds set on Christ and have peace in the Lord whatever may come. Christ is Lord of everything! He has purpose in everything. Pray for gravitas! Strong confidence in the Lord! “In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and his children will have a refuge.” Proverbs 14:26 ESV
Pray that we would have eternity in mind as we instruct and disciple our children, preparing them for the future. Mindful that in God’s providence our children were born for this moment!
Pray for a strong finish to this semester, and pray for planning that has already begun for next year. Pray that we will have all the tutors and directors that we need.
And lastly, pray that we would develop deep discipleship relationships and that we would be merry and rejoice in the work of ministry God has given us. We will need one another and the community of the Church built on the truth of God to stand strong against the cultural currents of the world.
Be merry warriors! “God put dragons in the world so that we could fight them, and we should fight dragons with shouts of joy.” – Pastor Doug Wilson 2020 Fight, Laugh, Feast conference
Read Nehemiah 8:9-10
“And Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.” For all the people wept as they heard the words of the Law. Then he said to them, “Go your way. Eat the fat and drink sweet wine and send portions to anyone who has nothing ready, for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.””Nehemiah 8:9-10 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/neh.8.9-10.esv
What then shall we do?
““Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon:”
Jeremiah 29:4 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/jer.29.4.esv
Fear God more than man. Confess and Repent of any sin including complacency or apathy.
Build Godly Households!
Be builders and makers. Be ready to be holy, set apart and independent, from the pagan culture around you.
“Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce.”
Jeremiah 29:5 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/jer.29.5.esv
Be fruitful and leave a Godly legacy.
“Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease.”
Jeremiah 29:6 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/jer.29.6.esv
Instruct your children!
Prepare them to be the leaders, witnesses, disciple makers of the future!
“Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.”
Psalm 127:3-5 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/psa.127.3-5.esv
“And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.”
Deuteronomy 6:6-7 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/deu.6.6-7.esv
“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”
Ephesians 6:4 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/eph.6.4.esv
The Church that will survive in Babylon
The Church in Babylon: Heeding the Call to Be a Light in the Darkness by Erwin W. Lutzer
- People, not buildings.
- Community not crowds.
- Training not just telling. True Jesus discipleship: “come follow me” Doing life and ministry together.
- Prayer not programs.
- Hard truths not just positive suggestions. (Acts 17:1-10, 1 Peter 4:14, 2 Tim. 3:12, Heb. 10:32-36)
- Christ is head of the church! (Rev. 2:10)
“Go and make disciples!”
Christians must be about making disciples. It isn’t a debatable matter. Speak truth in love.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.””
Matthew 28:19-20 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/mat.28.19-20.esv
- Reach the lost and equip the saints for the work of ministry. (Eph. 4:12)
- The Gospel of the Kingdom must be proclaimed to the world. (Matt. 24:14)
- Speak the truth in love. (Gal. 6:1, Eph. 4:11-15)
- Study and proclaim the pure Gospel (1 Cor. 15:1-8), contend for the faith against false gospels. (Jude)
- Focus on Jesus. Reenchant the world with God’s truth and grace. (Matt. 4:18-30, Matt. 5:11-16, Matt. 28:18-20)
Be joyful in the fight!
Our King has won! He is on His throne! We are His ambassadors in this fallen world. So rejoice! Even if it feels like we are losing some political or cultural battle, rejoice!
“Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out,
“Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready;”
Revelation 19:6-7 ESV https://www.bible.com/59/rev.19.6-7.esv
Reform the Church and ReEnchant the World with God’s Truth and Grace!
Enchant (latin: encantio): to speak meaning into.
If the church is not reenchanting this fallen world with God’s truth and grace, then it is being disenchanted with the lies of Satan!
“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”
– Romans 10:14-15
Prayer, public witness of the church, and proclaiming God’s truth and grace.
Why are we here (in this sin fallen world)?
To bear witness to God and His truth and grace.
To make disciples of all nations.
Why are we here (on the sidewalk outside an abortion clinic)?
To bear witness to God and His truth and grace.
To love the captive soul and to preach the good news!
What message are we sharing and bearing witness to?
There is a God that created the heavens and the earth.
We humans are created in His image.
We are sinners, we have rebelled against Him, and justly deserve our due punishment of death and damnation.
But God is merciful and loving.
Jesus is God the only begotten Son and He took our punishment upon Himself in our place.
Jesus rose from the dead, defeating death and securing the hope of our salvation.
We need only confess our sins, proclaim Jesus is lord and savior, and repent and we will be forgiven our sins and have life ever after!
Romans 3:10-18, 23
1 Corinthians 15:3-8
Leviticus 18:21; Matt. 5:17-19; Acts 2:37-41