22.4 Worship: Pray

Table of Contents

The Text

1 Chronicles 29:10–18 (CSB)
10 Then David blessed the LORD in the sight of all the assembly. David said, May you be blessed, LORD God of our father Israel, from eternity to eternity.

11 Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the splendor and the majesty, for everything in the heavens and on earth belongs to you. Yours, LORD, is the kingdom, and you are exalted as head over all.

12 Riches and honor come from you, and you are the ruler of everything. Power and might are in your hand, and it is in your hand to make great and to give strength to all.

13 Now therefore, our God, we give you thanks and praise your glorious name.

14 But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? For everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your own hand.

15 For we are aliens and temporary residents in your presence as were all our ancestors. Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope.

16 LORD our God, all this wealth that we’ve provided for building you a house for your holy name comes from your hand; everything belongs to you.

17 I know, my God, that you test the heart and that you are pleased with what is right. I have willingly given all these things with an upright heart, and now I have seen your people who are present here giving joyfully and willingly to you.

18 LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our ancestors, keep this desire forever in the thoughts of the hearts of your people, and confirm their hearts toward you.

The Chapter

Prayer is to be made for things lawful, and for all sorts of men living, or that shall live hereafter; but not for the dead, nor for those of whom it may be known that they have sinned the sin unto death.

The Confession

Prayer is to be made for things lawful, and for all sorts of men living, or that shall live hereafter

1 Timothy 2:1–2 (CSB) First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.

2 Samuel 7:29 (CSB) Now, please bless your servant’s house so that it will continue before you forever. For you, Lord GOD, have spoken, and with your blessing your servant’s house will be blessed forever.

For we, as children of God, dare in boldness and audacity, approach the throne of grace? And why? Because the Christ has ransomed for us. Because the Spirit dwells in us and bears witness with us that we are children of God so that we can cry out, "Abba, Father". We are co-heirs with the heir of God that has inherited all of the cosmos, heaven, earth, and hell.

Look at Luke 11 after the Lord's Prayer:

Luke 11:13 (CSB) If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him? ”

If I have said it once, I have said it a hundred times: if you turn from yourself and your sins, turn to God, run to God, ask God for God, you will get God!

It's not a trick question. It is the answer to the meaning of life. It is the gospel of Christ.

And how do we know if we turn to God that he won't reject us or turn us away or trick us or make us do more things to earn his favor? How do we know he won't be like our fathers or parents or loved ones who chose to crush you and make you earn their love by what they wanted?

Because God is not evil. God is good. And we know he is good because he sent his only begotten Son.

And if you have the power to turn from your sins and turn to God, that power for you to do that is the power of God in salvation. It is the good news. He will give you grace for you to come to you.

You will never see nor feel a father who rejects but you will always find the Prodigal Father whose outstretched hands always open infinitely wide.

You have sinned once again? You have sinned a billion times plus one more? Turn your face towards God. What do you see? Same God, same love, same mercies, same wide open arms all the time--all because his Son was perfect and perfectly saved you.

but not for the dead

2 Samuel 12:21–23 (CSB) His servants asked him, “Why have you done this? While the baby was alive, you fasted and wept, but when he died, you got up and ate food.” He answered, “While the baby was alive, I fasted and wept because I thought, ‘Who knows? The LORD may be gracious to me and let him live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I’ll go to him, but he will never return to me.

To the dead, their judgment is now. For:

Hebrews 9:27 (CSB) And just as it is appointed for people to die once — and after this, judgment —

They have reached judgment unto God. There is no waiting between death and judgment. Either they will be thrown into the lake of fire like their father Satan or their names are in the Lamb's Book of Life and they will only hear, "Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your master!"

nor for those of whom it may be known that they have sinned the sin unto death

1 John 5:16 (CSB) If anyone sees a fellow believer committing a sin that doesn’t lead to death, he should ask, and God will give life to him—to those who commit sin that doesn’t lead to death. There is sin that leads to death. I am not saying he should pray about that.

And to those worthless sinners who spent their lives rejecting the grace and mercies of God, it matters not that they thought they were predestined. For if they were predestined unto life, they would have been died in the flesh, received the Father's heart and the power of the Spirit within them so that they would be born again. For:

1 John 5:1 (CSB) Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of him.

And it would matter not if they were pastors of a church, done miracles, cast out demons, or led hundreds to the Lord. For if they had not put trust in the Lord Jesus Christ to save them from their sins, they will hear from the Lord Jesus Christ, "depart from me, you wicked fools!" for:

John 3:36 (CSB) The one who believes in the Son has eternal life, but the one who rejects the Son will not see life; instead, the wrath of God remains on him.

But to believers, the saints, the rescued, the ransom, the bonded, the co-heirs, the children of God, we will never be rejected nor cast aside:

John 6:37 (CSB) Everyone the Father gives me will come to me, and the one who comes to me I will never cast out.

Therefore, as children of God, who are utterly dependent on God as Father because He is our Father, we pray. We pray without ceasing, We pray because the Spirit dwells in us. We pray because Christ taught us how to pray and by his life shown unto us that he wanted to pray to the Father all the way to his last moment on the cross.