Last week we looked at how Jesus taught His disciples to pray:
- Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name
- Your Kingdom come –
- Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven –
- Give us our daily bread –
- Forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven our debtors –
- And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one –
Three parts focused on God and three parts focused on us.
PRAYER IS A PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN US AND GOD
This can also be evident in group prayer
- In group prayer we partner together to pray
The thing is that praying in a group is a very Biblical action and we need to learn how to do it right. I want us to learn and experience the Lord’s powerful tool of group prayer. This is one of the most important things that a church does.
The early Church prayed together often
Acts 1:14 “They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.”
Acts 2:42 “They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and the fellowship, to breaking of bread and to prayer.”
There are four things in this verse they devoted themselves to.
- Biblical teaching
- Breaking of bread
Acts 4:31 “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken”
Paul wrote letters to the churches and he prayed over them as a group
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” – Ephesians 1:17
“I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you.” – Ephesians 1:18
“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being.” – Ephesians 3:16
“and I pray that you being rooted and established in love, may have the power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” – Ephesians 3:17
I dare you to pray this over your spouse once a day for a month.
So for example, praying for my wife “and I pray that Junie would be rooted and established in love, and that she may have the power to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and that she will know this love that surpasses knowledge – that she may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”
Here are some more of Paul’s prayers:
Philippians 1:9-10 “and this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness.”
- Discern what is best
- Love may grow
- Filled with fruit of righteousness
2 Thessalonians 1:11 “With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.”
James 5:13 “ Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. 14 Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”
- Go to the elders for prayers of healing
- Confess your sins to one another
- Pray for each other so that you may be healed
Matthew 18:19-20 “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”
a. Subject to subject
b. Shorter prayers
Group prayer is not about how good we can look when we pray.
IT IS ABOUT HOW WELL WE AS A GROUP CAN PRAY TOGETHER.
c. Detail prayers
d. Silence is OK
e. Listen to one another