Matthew 5, 6, 7
Are the Beatitudes our Constitution?
True prayer is offered to God the Father in Christ's Name
In the New Testament, prayer is always directed to God the Father (Eph. 3:14), offered in the name of the Lord Jesus (Eph. 3:21) and interpreted by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:26). How often have we heard in public, prayer finished with the phrase 'for Christ's sake, Amen' and so rushed over as though it was of little importance and merely a formal or correct way of concluding. Do we realize that it is only because of the Lord Jesus Christ and His precious redemptive work that prayer is possible at all? If we do, then we shall be very conscious of this supreme fact as we pray and ask that all His fragrance should be cast over all our spiritual breathings to God.
The center of the purpose of all prayer is to bring each one of us into conformity to the Lord's will, whatever that may involve. Alas, so many of us journey such a long way along the road of Christian experience before we reach this point. When we can honestly and truthfully say we long for nothing so much as His will in our lives, whatever that may cost, and when our wills are completely submerged in His, we have progressed far towards the goal of spiritual maturity. We shall not reach this stage until we know something of the deception, frailty and sinfulness of our own hearts, and, at the same time, the boundless love and infinite concern for our eternal happiness that exists in the heart of our Heavenly Father towards each one of us. Then, and not till then, can we say as the Saviour did, 'Thy will, not mine, be done' (Luke 22:42).
God is working to a plan and chooses to use redeemed human lives to carry it out, then the question arises as to what part each of us is going to play in its unfolding. The importance of thiscan hardly be overemphasized. Does it not mean that we must go to the Throne of Grace constantly and ask 'Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?' (Acts 9:6). We are assured by the apostle Paul that it is according to the 'effectual working in the measure of every part' that the Body grows (Eph. 4:16), and this will only take place when every member of the Church is doing just thework intended by our Heavenly Father and none other. What this involves can only be discovered by prayer and waiting upon God.
As there are no useless members in the physical body, so there should be none in the spiritual Body. That prayer does make a difference, the following Scriptures make abundantly clear:
'Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified ... and that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men' (2 Thess. 3:1,2).
Now it could be argued that it was obviously the Lord's will that His Word should run unhindered and be glorified. If so, then why the need for prayer? But the apostle knew how easily the human factor could enter in and the flesh and the Devil intrude, and so hinder God's work:
'Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds' (Col. 4:3).
We ask you to pray for us and we will be praying for you that we all do the Fathers will in the work He has called us to do in The Name of His Son Christ Jesus our Lord.
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