TEXT: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
16 Rejoice evermore.
17 Pray without ceasing.
18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
— PRAYER —
We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible.” The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have completed 341 messages in this series.
This is message #342 titled, Rejoice, Pray, Give Thanks, Repeat, Part 7.
Dean Goulburn said, “Prayer is the act of spiritual breathing. True prayer can no more be limited to certain hours than breathing can.”
In this mini-series, we have talked about the importance of rejoicing evermore and praying without ceasing. As Christians, we are called to do both although many of us will admit to being inconsistent in doing so. Obeying the command to pray without ceasing starts with getting our hearts right with the Lord and understanding the importance of being in communion with Him at all times. If we are to reach our full potential as believers, the life of Christ within us is as essential as blood to our bodies. And that life is maintained by communion with God through prayer.
Not only does praying without ceasing mean that we ought to set aside special times to pray to God, but it also means that we ought to be praying in between those times. We ought to be in a regular state of the practice of prayer. When you think about it, if prayer is simply talking to God, prayer is, in many ways, the easiest thing you can do as a believer. We don’t think twice about talking to family, friends, and co-workers. We don’t think twice about talking on the phone, even turning on the speaker phone while driving or doing other things. Some of us don’t even think twice about talking to Siri or Google Assistant. The point is that, for most of us, we don’t THINK about our verbal communication with the people we know. Our speech is an outgrowth of what is already in our hearts and minds.
Why shouldn’t prayer be just as simple? Why shouldn’t prayer be just as matter-of-fact? Why shouldn’t prayer flow out of our spiritual lives just as the rest of our conversation flows out of our interactions with other people? That is necessary if we are to pray without ceasing. Edward Garbett said, “Prayer is not a rite, not a ceremony, not a cold, outward observance, but an actual intercourse between two parties—one who prays and One who hears. It is a communion between man and God, as real and actual as what passes between two men when they speak face to face with each other. If the inward desire is absent, then prayer is absent; and though a man shall have breathed all his life the words of prayer, he will never have prayed if he has never asked. We cannot ask unless we desire, and we cannot desire, unless we feel our want. Thus, therefore, the word expresses much more than this. See how great is the dignity of prayer. When the soul prays, it is as if the distance between itself and the throne of God were annihilated.”
We must fix it in our minds that prayer is a conversation, and that there is a real listening ear on the other side. And not just a listening ear, but a hand of action that reaches into our world, into our lives, and answers on our behalf.
J. Hart wrote:
Prayer is appointed to convey
The blessings God designs to give:
Long as they live should Christians pray;
They learn to pray when first they live.
If pain afflict or wrongs oppress;
If cares distract or fears dismay;
If guilt deject, if sin distress;
In every case still watch and pray.
‘Tis prayer supports the soul that’s weak,
Though thought be broken, language lame;
Pray, if thou canst or canst not speak,
But pray with faith in Jesus’ name.
Depend on him, thou canst not fail;
Make all thy wants and wishes known;
Fear not, his merits must prevail;
Ask but in faith, it shall be done.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.