Tag Archives: ministering

CHALLENGES FOR EVANGELISM

6 Jul

The Summary of Sermon by Ps. Djohan Handojo at Bethany International Sevice on Sunday, 2 July 2017.

CHALLENGES FOR EVANGELISM

Pastor Djohan recently attended a conference at Wittenburg in Germany where the Reformation started by Martin Luther. 

The conference discussed how to bring the Gospel for every person and challenges in sharing it. The gospel brings freedom and transforms life. 

In sharing the gospel today, we faced several challenges :-

 1. Ideology 

People do not believe in God. 40% of the people in the Western world become atheist. They do not find God important in their lives.
2. Secularism  

People look into the world and there is less emphasis of God in the society. In South East Asia, many people still have strong faith in God. We still find Christian schools, many Church services in the malls and hotels.

3. Moral 

Today sexual disorder is considered normal and acceptable especially in the western world. The government in America and other western countries legalized the same-sex marriage. Even the schools are teaching it and educate the right to develop love and feelings beyond the gender which is gender disorientation.

(
James 1: 2-3) The world is constantly under temptation by the devil. Only the kingdom of God is unshakeable. 

We are dealing with self centeredness. People have the tendency to become self centered. Some of us struggle with sin but Jesus is waiting for us to come back when we have gone astray in the world. 
(2 Corinthians 5: 17-18) We are the new creation in Christ. It is important for us to walk in Christ every day. God will see us in a different way, God will see Christ who has redeemed us and see us as a new man or new woman in Christ.

When we are still living in the old self, the devil can attack us. When we live as a new man in Christ, the
devil cannot attack us. However, we can live a victorious life because God is in us.

(1 Corinthians 6 : 2 – 3)  For us as believers, one day, we will reign and rule with Jesus. We will judge the world and the fallen angels. 

Now, the Holy Spirit is in the world but one day the Holy Spirit will be taken away from the world. The world will turn into chaos.
(John 6:54- 55) Whoever eat of my flesh and drink of my blood remains in me, have the salvation and eternal life.

How can we stay peaceful in this troubled world?

12 Jan

How can we stay peaceful in this troubled world?

By Ps Daniel Prajogo and summarised by BIS Team

John 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled you believe in God, believe also in Me

Troubled –  comes from the word ‘stirred’ like when our heart is stirred no calmness

Troubled hearts have been known as the causes of physical sicknesses.

John 16:33 I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace in the world you will have tribulation but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.

We are not free from problems and troubles

Numbers 13 the journey of the Israelites from Egypt to Canaan

The 10 spies said they were like grasshoppers

However Joshua and Caleb believed that the Lord has promised yes there were big enemies. Our God is bigger than our troubles.

We must know our Father in Heaven personally

The invisible God invite us to trust Him in the midst of visible troubles.

How can we believe that Jesus loves us?  The cross of Jesus CHRIST.

There is no greater love than this. You are deeply loved by God.

John called himself the disciple that Jesus loves. John rejoices in this identity.

1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love but perfect love casts out fear

God doesn’t require us to understand His thoughts the mind of God is too deep and too great to be understood Romans 11:33

Faith doesn’t deny reality.

Believe in God, Believe in Me

Psalms 56:3 whenever i am afraid I will trust in You

Fear is also actually a form of our beliefs.

John 14:27 peace I leave with you not as the world gives let not your hearts be troubled

The keys to having troubled hearts:

1.Trust in HIS Love

  1. GOD gives us HIS peace

The peace that Jesus has in Himself

What kind of Peace that Jesus our Lord want to give us?

Comes from one source alone that is His Father

John 16:32 indeed the hour is coming that you will be scattered each to his oen and will leave Me alone. This is the Peace of Jesus When everything else is gone and yet I am not alone because the Father is with Me.

John Wesley a great preacher and he felt something was missing from his relationship with God

In one sailing journey Wesley met a group of Christians Moravian German Puritans. The ship suddenly tossed and turned the Moravians stayed calm and Wesley asked the secrets of their calmness it was because they knew their God personally. Life is like a roller coaster but we can be sure that the presence of the Father is with us.

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Understanding God’s Call For Your Life

24 Jul

Understanding God’s Call For Your Life

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Pastor Francis Ng

Tabernacle of Christ Church

Get ready for your miracle today. If we don’t understand why God has created us, our life will be miserable.  We are wonderfully created, talented in different areas. God designs us uniquely for His different purposes.  Our life on Earth is meant to make a difference. All of us are ministers of God in Jesus Christ; each one of us has a specific assignment from God.

The counsel of the Lord stands forever, the plans of his heart to all generations. (Psalms 33:11)   

God has a purposeful plan and we are here for a reason.  Many people never understand their existence on Earth.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)

6 Reasons to Understand God’s calling

  1. It answers the issues of fulfillment.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)

A fulfilling life in Christ.  Only the Lord can satisfy our life, not our spouse, entertainment, recreation, drugs, etc.  There is emptiness inside of us until we understand our calling in Christ.  This is why people pursue substitutes today and go for worldly pleasures.  Life is not about outside thing but it is about inside, inner life.  When the church comes together it is God’s Parliament in session, something spiritual begins to happen.  God will execute His decrees when we are united in prayer praise and worship.

  1. It answers the issues of direction. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air (1 Corinthians 9:26). We are not directionless.
  2. It answers the issue of stability. God knows better than us. There will always be problems in life.   Our circumstances no longer dictate our decision but it is the word of God that dictates us.  God wants us to deal with the issues of our life biblically.  We are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus.  We are the children of the most High God. As long as we are in the will of God becoming what He says He wants me to be.  Circumstances may change but God’s word stay the same and His love for us remain forever. Greater is He inside of us than he that is in this world.

I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:12-13)

  1. It answers the issue of significance. No body else can replace us. We are one of a kind because we are precious and special in His sight.  Even people with disability are special.

For you formed my inward parts;

you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.

 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

 Wonderful are your works;

my soul knows it very well. (Psalm 139:13-14)

Don’t believe the lies of the devil that we are born lesbians or gays.  God does not make mistakes He makes male and female only.  He has the power to turn our mess into our message, our trials into testimonies to glorify Him.  How many of us like to be thrown into prison for doing the will of God?  Joseph was imprisoned because of false accusations.  Whatever we are going through in our life stop complaining.  God is preparing us for His assignments.  The Lord’s favor was upon Joseph even inside the jail.

  1. It answers the issues of Providence.

If God is calling you, He will provide for you.  If He orders it, He will pay for it.  If God never says, don’t stretch it.  If God wants us to be somewhere for His mission trip, He will provide. God has His divine orchestration because God has His ways. If God is not providing for us maybe we need to find out if we are doing our own things.

Our calling is our warranty product.  Every product comes with our warranty.  Our calling is guaranteed by the Lord Himself, trust God.  Like Prophet Elijah was fed by the ravens, a selfish bird by nature.  If God can turn the nature of selfish birds to feed Elijah, He is able to promote us. God can turn anything in our favor, the heart of the kings belong to Him.

When Pastor Ng went into fulltime he had no salary, no income, zero literally, empty bank account.  He never told anybody about his situation but God never fail to provide. Every meal was provided by God daily.  If God says something, He will back you up.

  1. It answers the issue of time

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. (Ecclesiastes 3:1)  God is not governed by time.  Why are we given time? It is so that we can accomplish God’s purposes and plans.  Don’t waste our life.  Make the best of our time.  Use it to make it a difference for God.  None of us know how much time we have here on Earth.

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. (Ephesians 5:15-16)

When we think about death, something that we all have to face, we better start living for Christ.

So teach us to number our days, that we may get a heart of wisdom.(Psalms 90:12)

The time given to us is to serve God, fulfilling His calling in our life to exalt His Name.

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GOD’S PRESENCE

3 Mar

GOD’S PRESENCE

Today’s Word: Exodus 13:17-22

Today’s Bible Reading:

Morning: Mark 8:22-38

Night: Numbers 28-30

Today’s Inspiration

It is interesting to reflect on how God led the Israelites out of Egypt into the Promised Land. Let us trace the journey of Israel to the Promised Land: The path taken by the Israelites into the Promised Land has never been known by them. The path was occupied by many nations that were yet civilized, strong and tough. So as a tour guide, at the beginning of first trip, God deliberately took a long path to prevent them from these nations, so that the people of Israel did not face a conflict which could make them discouraged to go back to Egypt and to thwart God’s plan.

God erased the mentality as the former slave nation with a process of education, discipline, and formation in the long journey. God Himself who guided them through with the presence of a pillar of fire at night and a pillar of cloud during the day. The presence of God walked in front to guide and accidentally set the distance between His presence (in the form of a pillar of fire and pillar of cloud) to the people of Israel, so it did not be too far away or too close. The beat and the rhythm of their journey should be constant so that this nation did not go too slow which risked them too far from God’s presence and was left behind or they went too fast so that this nation deviated from the presence of God.

Here, we can see that if we live in God’s presence then there is a protection, preservation and sufficiency. But in the guidance of God, we must walk in a constant beat and rhythm that we do not preceded God or too slow so we strayed from His way. When we come out from the presence of God, it is the same as rebellion against God’s guidance. Each of rebellion against God’s guidance will result in sin which it leads to accidents and destructions.

 TODAY’S VERSE TO REMEMBER:

“Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.” (Psalm 73:23-24)

TODAY’S ACTION:                  

Where we are right now, is God still the parameter or have we strayed away from the presence of God? If you have left far from God, return quickly. Your future is determined by the awareness of where you are right now.

TODAY’S QUOTE:

The presence of God should walk in front of us.

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DO NOT GROW WEARY IN WELL-DOING

25 Jan

DO NOT GROW WEARY IN WELL-DOING by Sheila Campbell

One winter we received several inches of snow just after Christmas. The first days of the snow were joyous; the hazy winter sky and the snow-covered yard were beautiful, and being snowed in gave us some much-needed family time. It had been a very hectic and busy fall season, and I felt we needed some leisure time, so we canceled school for the week.

It was on one of those leisurely vacation days that the Lord reminded me of a valuable truth about faithfulness, strength, and joy. I was in the middle of feeding my oldest son, Justin. Due to a brain injury at the age of 5, Justin was severely handicapped, and although the break from therapists and caregivers had been a welcome reprieve from our usual schedule, several days without their assistance was beginning to wear on me. Justin was 15 at the time and weighed more than 120 lbs; transferring him from one place to another was no longer an easy task.

In the middle of his meal, he needed to get out of his wheelchair for a few minutes. “Oh, Justin, not now,” I groaned. For a moment I was angry with him, although he was not at fault. “Now it will take me twenty minutes longer to finish lunch,” I thought, as I pushed the wheelchair toward the bedroom, “plus two more transfers on my back,” I selfishly added.

Suddenly the Scripture “be not weary in well doing” came to my mind. The thought sharply admonished my soul. “Oh, Father,” I prayed, “forgive me of my selfishness.” The time was unimportant; I simply wanted a nap. I realized I was seeking my own solution to my weariness— both mental and physical, but I had forgotten the true source of strength, and that forgetfulness was robbing me of the joy of caring for my son.

I was reminded of the words of Isaiah: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength” (Isaiah 40:31), and I remembered a sermon I had heard about this particular verse. The minister had encouraged his listeners to reconsider the definition of the words wait upon in this verse. Rather than “act with patience,” we should consider it to mean “to serve.” I thought about how my service to my children was my ministry to God and how blessed I was to be able to serve them. Ministry is not service to God when we serve begrudgingly or out of obligation, because then it becomes a duty rather than ministry. Ministry should be a service from the heart. When we serve out of a love that overflows from the heart, that service produces such exceedingly great joy that when we say to our children “it is my pleasure to do this for you,” it truly is.

Today I no longer have the joy of caring for my son. Justin went home to be with the Lord on March 3, 2004, at the age of 17, but the lesson I learned that day was forever etched into my memory. Over the years, when I have felt I deserved a break from the time and energy I was investing into homeschooling my children and running my household, the Lord has often brought it to mind. Yes, physical rest is important, but when we seek to renew our spirits in our own strength, we will repeatedly find ourselves lacking. It is a comfort to remember the words of Psalm 84:5: “Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee…”

Source: http://www.crosswalk.com

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THE BIBLICAL APPROACH TO SPANKING – PART 1

3 Dec

THE BIBLICAL APPROACH TO SPANKING by Chip Ingram

Part 1

Seven steps to disciplining your child.

Regardless of the method, the Bible’s word on discipline clearly demands that parents be responsible and diligent in spanking, but strongly prohibits physical abuse of any kind. Obviously, the biblical approach is balanced, reasonable, and controlled. So let’s get very practical. What does it look like to spank in a way that obeys Scripture, modifies attitudes and behavior, and actually strengthens the bond between parent and child?

Seven Steps

Don’t panic when you have to use action to enforce discipline. I know how much second-guessing a parent can do. Let me give you seven key steps that will enable you to discipline your child without fear of overstepping your bounds.

1. Clear warning.

Your first interaction with your child about a situation should be verbal. A child should never be blindsided by the discipline you hand down to her. It should always be preceded by a clear warning, both for her sake and for yours. You want to know whether your child deliberately crossed a line or made an honest mistake. A clear warning will help her steer clear of danger and will help you know you’re correcting intentional disobedience. That’s why it would be appropriate to issue a warning to Johnny the first time you see him walking out of the neighbor boy’s house.

The enforcement of discipline comes only after words have not done the job. Physical means of correction are only appropriate in cases of clear disobedience, and then only at certain ages.

2. Establish responsibility.

It’s important for your child to own up to his misbehavior. Many parents make the mistake of asking, “Why did you do that?” That’s not a good question;

“why” doesn’t help him admit his responsibility in the situation. Besides being a theological no-brainer — your child is a sinner with a predisposition to disobedience, which he inherited from you and every other generation all the way back to the first parents in the Garden — that question gives him room to inject shades of gray into his understanding and explanations. He’ll begin to rationalize, and you’ll lose sight of the real issue. Here’s a better way to go about it:

“Johnny, what did you do wrong?”

“Nothing. Everyone was going over to that house, and I just went in for a minute.”

“Try again. What did you do wrong?”

“I only went in to …”

“I’m going to give you one more chance. What did we talk about?”

“I’m not supposed to go over there for any reason.”

“So what did you do wrong?”

“I disobeyed you.”

Do you see how, with that kind of conversation, you’re calm, controlled, and not trying to punish? You’re trying to help him learn. Remember that your child can’t learn without being able to own up to his responsibility. No one can. When you put your child in a position of having to do that, you’re preparing him for responsible adulthood.

Remember to always keep your focus on the child’s behavior, not his identity. If Johnny says, “I’m a bad person” or “You don’t like me anymore,” affirm how much he is loved and how special he is, but turn his attention immediately back to his actions. You want him to understand that the act was wrong and that he is fully capable of doing the right thing.

(To be continued)

Taken from Effective Parenting in a Defective World published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. Copyright © 2006 by Chip Ingram. All rights reserved

Source:www.focusonthefamily.com

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THE POWER THAT WIELDS THE WEAPON

2 Dec

THE POWER THAT WIELDS THE WEAPON by John Piper

2 Thessalonians 3:1–2

Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith.

You recall from Ephesians 6:17-18 that Paul said, “Take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God … praying.” Prayer is the power that wields the weapon of the word. Last week we pondered the truth that the weapon serves the wielding power.

Nevertheless—and this is the magnificence of prayer—God has put his word into the hand of prayer. He himself remains the source and goal of all things, but he has chosen to make prayer the power that wields the weapon of his word. He himself remains the source to that power, but he grants to use the privilege and joy of being the instrument of his power in prayer.

A Universal Desire to Mirror God

I believe all of you somewhere within your heart want to be the instruments of God’s power, and therefore, even if you don’t feel like it now, there is buried somewhere in your subconscious the longing to be a man or a woman of fervent and effective prayer.

The reason I am confident of this is that every one of you is created in God’s image. Each one of you was created to be a conscious mirror of God’s image. You were created to consciously reflect his glory like a mirror of God’s image. Before sin entered the world, I think Adam and Eve had an overwhelming longing to be used by God to image-forth his power and wisdom and love in the world. They wanted to be mirrors of his glory.

And that longing is deep within every person today, but it has been distorted by sin. In a sense, the distortion is only slight; but it is the difference between day and night. It is the difference between wanting to reflect his face and wanting to take his place.

The glory of a mirror is to put its face to the light and to let that light shine. This is what mirrors are made for. This is the deep longing of the heart. But then sin entered the world and its first manifestation was Adam and Eve’s discontent with being mirrors. They began to want to be their own source of light. They began to feel that mirrors are just glass with a thin black coating of tin and mercury.

They suddenly became conscious of the fact that to be a good mirror you have to turn whichever way the light moves. You can’t be your own master. So they chose to be their own source of light; they turned their brilliant mirror-faces away from God, and now all they can do is block his light and cast a shadow across the world.

But I want you to see that the longing of Adam and Eve to be the light is a distortion of a legitimate longing, namely, to reflect the light. The Bible teaches that everyone since the fall of Adam and Eve is born with these same distorted longings. We come into the world longing to be God. We want the world to revolve around our interests.

We want to decide for ourselves which way to turn our faces. We want people to esteem us and admire us and compliment us. We don’t like the thought of being a mirror which has no beauty except in the thing it reflects. We don’t like the idea of having to turn our face wherever the light wants to go. We want to be our own light. We want to be God.

This comes with our fallen humanity. It is the very essence of sin. If you are honest, you will admit that you have felt this way. But this universal experience of sin is Satan’s distortion of something wonderful. And the wonderful thing is the pure and righteous longing to be used by God to reflect his glory in the world.

It’s not wrong to want to be significant. It’s wrong to want your significance to reside in yourself instead of in the one you reflect. It’s not wrong to want to be important. It’s wrong to want your importance to be in yourself instead of the one you reflect. It’s not wrong to boast, but “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord!”

Concealed deep beneath our pride and our craving for esteem and our love of power and influence is a good thing that has been distorted, namely, the longing to be a mirror of God. To be a mirror of God is the highest honor to which a creature can aspire. And the most ludicrous sight in the world is a created mirror turning away from the light of God and then trying on its own to make a little spark to brighten the shadow it casts on the world.

We Mirror God Through Prayer

Now you might have lost track of what this has to do with prayer, so let me try to retrace our steps. What I have been trying to show is that each of you, if not consciously, at least subconsciously wants to be a person of fervent and powerful prayer. That is, you want to have a significant place in the purposes of God. You want to be his instrument in accomplishing something worthwhile.

My argument for this has been that behind the universal desire to be God there is a distorted longing to be a mirror of God – to have the significance and the importance of reflecting the glory of God. But my unspoken assumption so far is that praying is the way we mirror God.

Surely that is easy to see. A mirror faces away from itself to its source of light so that it might have some use in the world, and prayer faces away from itself toward God so that it might be of some use in the world. A mirror is designed to receive light and channel it for the good of others, and prayer is designed to receive grace and channel it for the good of others.

The value of a mirror is not in itself, but in its potential to let something else be seen. And the value of prayer is not in itself, but in its potential to let the power and beauty of God be seen. A mirror is utterly dependent on the source of light from outside itself, and prayer is the posture of the childlike, utterly dependent on the resources and kindness of the heavenly Father.

So praying is the way we mirror God. And if I am right that each of you, in the image of God, has a deep desire to be a mirror of God, then it is also true that, even if you don’t feel like it now, there is buried somewhere in your subconscious the longing to be a man or a woman of fervent and effective prayer.

My prayer is that God will use this message to bring that desire to the surface and make it insatiable all through 1985.

God’s Word Triumphs Through Prayer

One of the texts that has done that for my own desire to pray is 2 Thessalonians 3:1-2. It’s short, but full of incentive for those of us who want to have a significant role in God’s purposes: “Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed on and triumph, as it did among you, and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men; for not all have faith.”

This text gives tremendous significance to prayer in God’s victorious purposes. We could state the doctrine like this: Through prayer the word of the Lord overcomes obstacles and reaches a glorious victory.

The word of the Lord is pictured as an athlete running in a race to attain the prize of glory. An athlete is glorified when he wins and is recognized and acclaimed as superior to all the others in the race. So the word of the Lord is running in the world. It will one day win the race of words—the race of philosophies and theories and worldviews. It will be recognized and acclaimed as superior to all other words and philosophies—IF we pray! “Pray for us that the word of the Lord may speed on in triumph.”

Now just think of it. Almighty God has spoken. If he is God, it is sure that his word will accomplish all his purposes. God’s truth must win the race of words, but the text says, “Pray that the word will be victorious!” I take this to mean that God will indeed cause his word to be glorified, but he does not intend to win the victory without prayer. Or to put it in the most amazing way, he does not intend to win without giving you a part in the victory.

This is simply amazing. God’s whole purpose of creation and redemption hangs on the success of his word. Jesus said that the gospel must first be preached to all the peoples (Mark 13:10) before the end will come. In the end there will be people in the kingdom from every tongue and tribe and nation (Revelation 5:9). The word must run in triumph to those peoples if the purpose of God is to be accomplished. If his word fails, if there are insurmountable obstacles, then the new heaven and new earth abort.

Therefore, since God does not intend to win the race of words without the prayers of his people, the very purpose of God in creation and redemption hangs on your prayers.

True Significance Comes Through Prayer

If you’re hungry for significance—for ultimate, eternal significance, not a little nationwide 50-year significance—then devote yourself to prayer for the word of God to run and be glorified, because through prayer the word of the Lord will be victorious and you with it.

We count people great in proportion to whether they have produced anything great, so some people long to write a great novel, and some long to build a business that will rival IBM or Mobil Oil, and some long to be the coach of a Super Bowl champion team, and some dream of commanding a brilliant battalion in victory, and some dream of discovering a new form of energy.

In about two seconds, all of them and all of us are going to gather before the judgment seat of God. James says that your life here is like a mist that appears for a little while and then is gone. Earthly life is like the breaths you saw in the air as you walked in this morning—about two seconds. So the only greatness worth pursuing is greatness that is going to last in the age to come. Nobody gets excited about two seconds of greatness. Would there be any takers if God offered to let you feel the greatness of being chief executive officer of IBM for two seconds in exchange for your life?

So we are all there before the judgment seat of all. The novel is gone, IBM is gone, the Super Bowl is gone, the battalion is gone, and the new form of energy is a first grade science project in heaven. But off to the side of this group of erstwhile greats is John Doe Christian who, in his life, had spent 30 minutes a day on his knees praying that the word of the Lord would run and be glorified.

And behind him, stretching as far as the eye can see, are people from every tribe and tongue and nation praising God and shouting, “Worthy art thou, Lord God Almighty, for thou hast put it in the heart of John Doe Christian to pray, and by his prayers didst cause thy word to run and be glorified in our faith. Long live the King! Long live John Doe Christian! Great is the Lord and great is the mirror of his glory!”

For those of us who long for eternal significance and hunger after true greatness, 2 Thessalonians 3:1 is a very exciting text. God has appointed prayer as the means by which we have a role in his saving purposes, which is greater than any greatness the earth has to offer. You just have to see things the way God does.

God will be duly glorified when the knowledge of his glory fills the earth like the waters fill the sea. And the earth will be filled with the knowledge of his glory when the word of the Lord runs and is glorified. And the word of the Lord runs and is glorified through prayer.

Brothers and sisters, this is a high calling. Believe it or not, this is the kind of greatness and the kind of significance you are longing for—to be an instrument in the hands of God to cause the word of the Lord to speed on in triumph!

A Challenge to Pray

We stand at the end of the week in prayer and at the beginning of 1985. We have begun it in the way we should. The ministry of the word will run and be glorified at Bethlehem Baptist Church this year to the degree that we remain faithful to God’s word and to the degree that we pray for its victory. Everything of eternal significance happens by the word and prayer.

Let me hold out a challenge to you. Would you be willing to join me in resolving to pray this prayer every day this year? “Lord, cause your word to run and be glorified in the ministries of our church and in the missions we support.”

It implies praying that the word of God will win converts to Christ in our midst. It implies praying that the word of God will conquer sinful habits in our lives. It implies praying that the word of God will rise up and send out from among us ministers of the word at home and abroad. It implies praying that the teachers of the church will be kept from the evil one and will hold to the truth and be filled with spiritual power to proclaim and explain the word of God.

But all I am asking is whether you will make the promise. God helping me, I will pray each day in 1985 this simple prayer: Lord, cause your word to run and be glorified in the ministries of our church and in the missions we support.

Before I ask you to make that choice, let me close with an illustration of the kind of discipline and perseverance in prayer that might inspire you.

Illustration and Encouragement to Pray

David Howard, whose son teaches at our seminary and who is general director of The World Evangelical Fellowship, told recently in the Evangelical Missions Quarterly about a great movement of prayer that happened at Wheaton College when he and Jim Elliot were there in 1946.

Jim Elliot—the missionary killed by the Auca Indians in Ecuador—organized a campus-wide round-the-clock prayer cycle so that a student was praying for a missions movement during every 15-minute slot. One of the students named Art Wiens was moved during that week to pray systematically through the college directory, praying for 10 students by name every day. He followed this faithfully through his college years.

David Howard says that he did not see Art Wiens again until 1974, about 25 years later, at the Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization in Switzerland. As they renewed their friendship, Art asked David Howard if he recalled the great times of prayer they used to have. Then he said, “You know, Dave, I am still praying for 500 of our college contemporaries who are now on the mission field.” David asked him how he knew that many are overseas. He said, “I kept in touch with the alumni office and found out who was going as a missionary, and I still pray for them.”

Dave was so astounded he asked if he could see the prayer list. The next day he brought it to him—a battered old notebook he had started in college days with the names of hundreds of their classmates and fellow students.

Have you ever tested the desire to put your hand to a plow and not take it off for 25 years? Well, I would like to give you the chance to put it to the plow for one year, and the plow is very light. It takes eight seconds to say prayerfully, “Lord, cause your word to run and be glorified in the ministries of our church and in the missions we support. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

http://www.desiringgod.org/resource-library/ sermons/the-power-that-wields-the-weapon

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