Pray For Friends
Resources On Prayer
["In relation to His people God
works only in answer to their prayers. It is in prayer that we exchange
our natural strength for the
supernatural strength of God." Andrew Murray]
["Nothing lies beyond the reach of
prayer except that that lies beyond the will of God." Dr. R.A. Torrey]
["You don't have a failure in your
life but what is somehow a prayer failure.
You don't have a need in your life but what earnest persistent prayer
could supply that need in your life.
You don't have a sin in your life but what proper prayer would have
prevented."- Adrian Rodgers]
[James now focuses us upon intercessory prayer.
Which is prayer for one another.]
Notice what James teaches us about intercessory
The Confession We Must Make (vs
your faults one to
another, and pray one for another,
that ye may be healed. The
effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. – James
tells us in this text that we are to Confess our faults one to another
and pray for one another.]
[Word Study - Confess -
(Gk) - to assent. To confess, admit, profess or express agreement with.
Confession to God involves concurring with Him in His verdict.
(I) To promise, assent fully, agree (Luke 22:6). In the mid.
exomologéomai, to confess one’s own sin (Matt. 3:6; Mark 1:5;
Acts 19:18; James 5:16; Sept. : Dan. 9:4).
(II) To profess, confess, as the truth (Phil. 2:11); to confess,
acknowledge as belonging to one (Rev. 3:5). With a dat. following, to
give praise or glory to, glorify (Matt. 11:25; Luke 10:21; Rom. 14:11;
15:9 quoted from Ps. 18:49, 50; Sept.: 1 Chr. 16:4; 2 Chr. 30:22; Ps.
[Confession takes on two senses in our text,]
[When we confess our sins to God we are agreeing
with God about our sin.]
[When we confess our sins to our fellowman we
are expressing our apology for wronging them.]
[We are not
good at confessing our sins.
We are good at:]
[Castigating our foes.]
[Concealing our faults.]
["To err is human, and to cover it
up is too."]
[Someone has said, “Great revivals are not marked by
great singing or great preaching, but by great confession of sin.”]
["Where God’s people are broken, God
seems to move."]
place when we confess our faults?
There is Restoration (vs 16; Psalm 51.17)
[- As we discovered in our last study in James this word Healed means
just that, it means to be healed.
If you are physically afflicted pray for a physical healing.
If you are psychologically or spiritually afflicted pray for that
kind of healing. In this
context, connecting the prayer for healing with confession, if you are
relationally afflicted, if you have a broken relationship, pray for that
kind of healing. Don’t ever
forget that God does not like nor endorse broken relationships or
unforgiving hearts. If your
relationship with someone requires some work, go work on it and if
necessary lend it some heartfelt confession.]
If your relationship with God is broken, then come to God confessing, or
agreeing with God about your sin and its incredible penalty and God will
respond. Don’t ever forget
what your sin cost God. It
cost our Heavenly Father His only Begotten son.
It cost the Lord Jesus Christ much suffering and His life.
Your sin, all sin, is costly to God and we must recognize and
acknowledge what our sin did to our merciful and gracious Savior.
The Bible says,]
17 The sacrifices of God
are a broken spirit: a
broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. ]
[The Lord Jesus Christ was literally
broken for our every sin, will you be broken for your sins too?]
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive
us our sins, and to
cleanse us from all unrighteousness.]
There is Reconciliation (Matt 5.23-24) [ -
your faults one to
another, and pray one for another
. . . - There can be no reconciliation, when a wrong is done, until
there is confession.]
Confession – But not only do we need to
confess our sins to our Heavenly Father, we may also need to confess our
sins to our neighbor. If
there is ANY
broken relationship in your life, then God wants you to do what it takes
to get that right. The
23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there
rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
24 Leave there thy gift before
the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then
come and offer thy gift.]
Circle of Confession
- Be careful of the wiles of the
devil. James doesn't say
display your faults or broadcast your faults.
Don't throw your pearls before swine (Matt 7.6).
The circle of confession needs to follow the circle of sin.]
Sin, Private Confession
- Between you and the
lord, or a trusted prayer warrior.]
Sin, Personal Confession - Talk about it between each other.]
Sin, Public Confession
- If you have publicly dishonored the Lord, then you need to publicly
make it right.]
There is Revival (2 Chron 7.14)
[- When people get themselves right with God and right with each other
there will be a great revival in our land and our world.
The Bible states,]
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble
themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways;
then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal
their land. ]
be a great day in the Churches of America when Confession replaces
criticism And compassion replaces condemnation.]
The Command We Should Mind (vs 16)
[ - Confess
your faults one to
one for another, that ye may be healed. The
effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. - [Pray
one for another.]
1 . . . men ought
always to pray, and not to faint; ]
[1 Thessalonians 5:17
17 Pray without ceasing.]
[1 Samuel 12:23
23 Moreover as for me,
God forbid that I should
against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you
the good and the right way:]
[Without any doubt we are commanded to pray for and
with one another. This is
speaking expressly about the need for us to be engaged in intercessory
intercessory prayer, experienced Christians have learned that,]
Prayer Is The Greatest Christian Privilege (Heb 4.16)
[- Almighty God has asked you, commanded you, to come into His presence
with your intercessions and petitions.]
16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. ]
[Your Heavenly Father longs to hear your
["That the one that
scooped out the seas, heaped up the mountains, and flung out the stars
the omnipotent God has invited us to talk with Him."]
Prayer Is The Greatest Christian Power (Matt 18.19; 1 John
[- There is remarkable,
supernatural power in the prayers of godly people.
The Bible says,]
19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on
earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for
them of my Father which is in heaven.]
not just any prayer will yield such powerful persuasion.
But for those who have sought out with diligence the will of
their Heavenly Father, there is a powerful response from almighty God.]
[1 John 5:14-15
14 And this is the
confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to
his will, he heareth us: 15
And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we
have the petitions that we desired of him.]
[We must alwys remember that prayer is not just
us asking for anything we want, it is God’s people getting in touch with
heaven, and then praying heavens will onto this earth.]
Prayer Is The Greatest Christian Problem (James 4.2)
[- The problem that Christians have with prayer is at least two fold.
James expresses them both for us,]
2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and
cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not,
because ye ask
3 Ye ask, and receive not,
because ye ask
amiss, that ye may consume
it upon your lusts.]
Christians do not pray because they feel that they can handle things
themselves. Others pray but
pray the wrong way. They
pray for what they want, or they demand that God do things their way.
They have no real desire to be instructed by their Heavenly
Father when they pray.]
we depend upon organization,
we get what
organization can do, and that is something.
depend upon education,
we get what education can do, and that is something.
depend upon money,
We get what money can do, and that is something.
depend upon singing and preaching,
We get what singing and preaching can do, and that is something.
depend upon prayer, we get what God can do.
Dr. A.C. Dickson]
["Prayer is not just getting
ready for Christian service, prayer is Christian service."]
[You can do more than
you can after you've prayed, but you can do no more than you can before
[The sick need more than
our pity, they need our prayers.]
[Those with faults need more than our
condemnation; they need our intercession (Gal 6.1).]
The Conditions We Should Meet.
Intensity Of The Asking (vs 16) [-
. . .
effectual fervent prayer of
a righteous man availeth much. ]
- Means to be stretched out as an athlete bursting through the tape at
the end of a race.]
[We ought to be eager, fervent,
impassioned in our asking.
This is intense prayer.]
[This is to labor or work at prayer.
[Elijah labored in prayer for the child of the
woman of Zarepah (1 Kings 17.21)]
[Elijah also labored in prayer for the child of
the Shunamite woman (2 Kings 4.33-37)]
[Jesus told the disciples that some only go out
by fasting and prayer (Matt 17.21).
This implies working and laboring in prayer.
Perhaps not so much laboring to achieve a miracle but laboring to
be in a right relationship with God personally.]
[Christian must labor in prayer.]
Integrity Of The Asker (vs 16; Prov 15.29; Psalm 66.18; Isaiah
[-. . .
The effectual fervent prayer of
a righteous man
[We ought to be like Elijah - The
episode in (1 Kings 18.42-46).]
[God heard Elijah because he was a
righteous man (Prov 15.29; Psalm 66.18; Isaiah 59.1-2).
Righteousness is important to your prayer life. The opposite of
righteousness is sinfulness.
The Bible says,]
29 The LORD is
far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous. ]
18 If I regard iniquity in
my heart, the Lord will not hear
[Isaiah 59:1-2 1
Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot
save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:
2 But your iniquities have
separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid
his face from you, that
he will not hear. ]
are two types of righteousness in the Bible,]
[There is positional righteousness - Salvation.]
[There is practical righteousness - Lifestyle.]
The Character We Should Manifest (vs
17-18; 1 Kings 18.42) [-
Elias was a man subject to like
passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and
it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and
the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. –
Character means a lot when it comes to prayer or our relationship with
our Heavenly Father. Verse
16 stated that righteousness ought to mark who and what we are.
But what does the character of the righteous look like.
James provides an example of a man with the kind of godly
character that gave him power in prayer.
Elijah is our example.]
Person Of Prayer (1 Kings 18.42)
Ahab went up to eat and to drink.
went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon
the earth, and put his face between his knees, - The person of
prayer was Elijah who we know was a man of God that prayed and prayed
prayers were powerful because Elijah was a man faithfully given over to
God. From the revealing stories of Elijah in the Bible we discover that
Elijah was obedient to God and His Word.
He relied upon God for His protection and provision.
Elijah was truly a Man of God.]
[God’s people must learn to be fully given to
God and fully men and women of God just as Elijah was.]
[Elijah was a person of prayer because he was a
man of God. Elijah was a man
of God because he was,]
[Distinct for God]
[Directed by God]
[Dependent upon God]
Notice The Place Of Prayer
(1 Kings 18.42; Matt 6.5-6) [-
went up to eat and to drink.
went up to the
top of Carmel;
and he cast himself down upon
the earth, and put his face between his knees, - The top of Mount
Carmel. This was a secret
place of prayer. It
emphasizes our need to truly communicate with our Heavenly Father in
prayer. God sees, hears,
and answers secret prayer.
5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the
hypocrites are: for
they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the
streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have
their reward. 6 But thou,
prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray
to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret
shall reward thee openly.]
[Secret prayer emphasizes and fosters
an intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father.
It is important that God’s people truly get in touch with God
when they pray.]
Notice The Posture Of Prayer (vs 42) [-
went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of
and he cast
himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees,His face
between his knees.
– It is true that a person can pray anywhere and at anytime, but there
is something special and powerful that occurs when a godly person gets
alone, kneels and bows before their God.
Our posture in prayer expresses our,]
[Recognition of where we are when we pray; the
very throne room of God.]
for who we are approaching;
the King of kings, Almighty God.]
[We are just too proud as
Americans today. We will
not bow before any, not even Almighty God.
Humility before God rests in a heart that needs God.
Perhaps we won’t bow because we don’t really need God anymore?]
needs fear any earthly king when he has just had an audience with the
King of kings."]
that can kneel before God can stand before men."]
Notice the Passion of the prayer (1 Kings 18.42) [-So
Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel;
and he cast
upon the earth, and put his face
between his knees,His face between his knees. He worked at his
prayers. This refers us
back to the idea of
prayers. Perhaps another
problem with our prayers today is that they are far too few and far too
easy and simple. Do we even
feel the need to cast ourselves down before God anymore?]
Notice The Persistence Of Prayer (1 Kings 18.43-44; Luke 18.1;
Isa 30.18) [-
And said to his servant, Go up
now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said,
There is nothing. And
he said, Go again seven times. 44
And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold,
there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man's hand. And he
said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare
thy chariot, and get
thee down, that the rain stop thee not. – Here is another clear
indication of how hard Elijah worked at prayer.
He did not quit praying.
I do not believe that Elijah was just praying in vain repetitions
when he prayed, then prayed some more, and then prayed seven times.
He was likely praying for different things and aspects of what
might influence and be influenced by his prayers.
But he was importunate in his prayers.
He was knocking and he kept on knocking.
The Bible says, Jesus said,]
1 And he spake a parable unto them
to this end, that men
ought always to pray, and not to faint;]
[Why do we need to keep on praying? Why
isn’t once enough?
I suppose there could be
many answers to this question.
Perhaps there are things in us the we need to discover, confess,
and pray about. Perhaps
there are things God is doing in us or around us that are building
toward the answer to our prayers.
We may not always know why God tarries when he does, but He gives
us this hope and confidence.
The Bible says,]
18 And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be
gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have
mercy upon you: for the LORD
is a God of judgment: blessed
are all they that wait
for him. ]
[Rest assured, if God waits, there is a
delay's are not God's denial's"
Notice The Power Of Prayer (Luke 18.45) [-
And it came to pass in the mean
while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a
And Ahab rode, and went to
Jezreel. – Powerful, persistent prayer will yield powerful and
glorious answers. There is
an undeniable power that accompanies the effectual fervent prayer of a
[The Power of the Bended Knee]
[Birds go to sleep on
their perches, but they never fall off. This is because of the tendons
in the bird's legs. They are so constructed that when the leg is bent at
the knee, the claws contract and grip like a steel trap. The claws
refuse to let go until the knees are unbent again. The bended knee gives
the bird the ability to hold on to his perch so tightly.]
[Isn't this also the secret of the holding
power of the Christian? Daniel found this to be true. Surrounded by a
pagan environment, tempted to compromise with evil, urged to weaken his
grip on God, he refused to let go. He held firm when others faltered
because he was a man of prayer. He knew the power of the bended knee.]
[From sleeping birds we can learn the
secret of holding things which are most precious to us—honesty, purity,
thoughtfulness, honor, character. That secret is the knee bent in
prayer, seeking to get a firmer grip on those values which make life
worth living. When we hold firmly to God in prayer, we can rest assured
he will hold tightly to us.]
Church, May 24, 2009,
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