Praying with Boldness
February 3, 2018
Revelation 4:6-11 – The throne of Heaven
- When we pray it is as if we are there at God’s throne ourselves.
- We approach God at His invitation.
- Rev. 5:8 – “…twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense which are the prayers of the saints.”
- God wants us to pray boldly, but too often we fail to ask.
- D. L. Moody: “We honor God when we ask for great things. It is humiliating to think that we are satisfied with very small results.”
Acts 4:23-31 – The church prays boldly
[Act 4:23-31 ESV] 23 When they were released, they went to their friends and reported what the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 And when they heard it, they lifted their voices together to God and said, "Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything in them, 25 who through the mouth of our father David, your servant, said by the Holy Spirit, "'Why did the Gentiles rage, and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers were gathered together, against the Lord and against his Anointed'-- 27 for truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, 28 to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place. 29 And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus." 31 And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.
- Bold prayer is…
- Focused on God
- Grounded in God’s Word
- Bigger than me
- Bold prayer is…
- Bold prayer is focused on God.
- Too often our prayers are completely focused on ourselves.
- Lord, I need…, Lord, help me…
- Certainly, our needs bring us to the throne of grace, but before we focus on our needs, we first need to focus on God Himself.
- Jesus taught us to pray in the Lord’s Prayer (Mt 6, Lk 11) – “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name…”
- Acts 4:24 – … they lifted their voices together to God and said, "Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything in them…
- God, you are sovereign
- God, you are the creator
- God, you are in charge
- They prayed about who God was, what God had done, and what God would do.
- One more key word: together
- They prayed together
- v24: “they lifted their voices together”
- Acts 1:14 – All these with one accord were devoting themselves to prayer…
- We need to pray together
- They prayed together
- Bold prayer is grounded in God’s Word.
- Acts 4:25-26 – "'Why did the Gentiles rage, and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers were gathered together, against the Lord and against his Anointed'
- This is a quote from Psalm 2:1-2
- As the church prayed, they recognized that King David had prophesied concerning those who would rise up against Jesus, the anointed one.
- They also recognized that they had witnessed the fulfillment of this prophecy in their lifetime; and they recognized it was God at work.
- Acts 4:27-28 – 27 for truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, 28 to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place.
- When we face troubles, trials and challenges, we can pray boldly and according to God’s Word…
- [Matt 22:37 ESV] 37 And he said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.
- [John 16:33 ESV] 33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world."
- [Phil 4:13 ESV] 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
- [Gal 5:22 ESV] 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
- Bold prayer is bigger than me.
- Acts 4:29-30 – … grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.
- What did the church pray for?
- That they would continue to speak God’s word with boldness
- That God would heal, and that signs and wonders would be performed through the name of Jesus
- God begins to answer their prayer in v31: place was shaken and they spoke the Word of God boldly
- We see the continuation of God’s answer as the book of Acts unfolds.
- Carl K. Becker, Africa Inland Mission, 1929-1976
- Missionary medical doctor specializing in leprosy
- Served in a 1,100-acre leper colony in Zaire, now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo
- More than 4,000 patients, 3,000 operations and delivered thousands of babies
- On the weekends he was an evangelist traveling to village after village
- “My greatest experience on the mission field is meeting impossible circumstances with Someone who makes them possible.”
- God wants us to pray and ask boldly
- The church in Acts 4 prayed boldly and quoted from Psalm 2. That Psalm continues in v8…
[Psalm 2:8 ESV] 8 Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession.
1 Chronicles 4:10 - Jabez: “enlarge my territory”
- What will you boldly pray for God to do this year?
- What will you pray for that is bigger than you?