Saturday, September 10, 2016

Effectual Prayer

Exodus 17:8-13
Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim.
And Moses said unto Joshua, Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek: to morrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in mine hand.
10 So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.
11 And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.
12 But Moses hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.
13 And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.
When I was a young man I would sit and watch the TV show “Hee Haw” with my grandfather, he loved that show. I remember they always had this one skit where a bunch of old drunks would sit around and commiserate their bad luck in life. They had a theme song they would sing before and after they told you had bad their life had gotten. It went like this:

Gloom, despair, and agony on me
Deep dark depression, excessive misery
If it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all
Gloom despair and agony on me

Have you ever been in a situation where it seems like life has thrown everything your way except the kitchen sink, and then bam, here comes the kitchen sink? And it begins to feel like the theme song from that old “Hee Haw” skit, is the theme song for your life? Have you ever felt as if there was a target painted on your back, or that you had one of those signs that says, “Hey! Kick me.”

Have you ever felt like your problems weren’t just your average every day, normal life’s problems? Well then, let me Introduce you to the spiritual realm. You have just entered the place where every battle is won or lost. The reality is that we are always in a battle, and the reality is, that it is a spiritual battle. The enemy is always at work trying to draw you away from God, trying to destroy your families, and to steal your health, your peace, and your joy. Ultimately his goal is to kill you. That’s what Jesus said in John 10:10 - Says – “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy.” (NLT)

The thing is, he often gets by with it. The enemy is effective at his work, because he is a master at getting you to focus on the natural. The devil knows that if he can get you to expend all your energy on fighting and struggling and warring in the flesh, that you are already defeated. Spiritual battles can never be won by natural means.

Spiritual battles can never be won on physical grounds with physical weapons. Spiritual battles must be fought with spiritual weapons. That’s why the Apostle Paul told us in Ephesians 6:12 – “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (KJV)

Our battle is Spiritual. Your enemy is not your neighbor, he’s not that person that makes your life miserable, he’s not the IRS, the DMV, the DHS, or the DEA. Your enemy is not drugs, alcohol, nicotine, video games, the TV, pornography, the internet, fornication, or adultery. And your enemy is not sickness, disease, poverty, or hunger. Yes, all these things may be manifest against us, but they are just masks the enemy wears, but your enemy and mine, is the DEVIL!

The good news is: We Have been given Spiritual weapons to fight this battle.

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 – “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” (KJV)

In Exodus 17:8-13 Joshua and the children of Israel are in a very real physical confrontation. The Amalekites are not imaginary, that are a real enemy that hated the Children of God and wanted to destroy them. This symbolizes how the enemy uses the natural (The visible, and tangible) things to war against us.

No doctor will examine a person and diagnose them with alcoholism and say to them, “It’s a demon.” No, because they can only see the natural. But we know that disease may manifest itself in the natural, but its roots are spiritual. That’s why sickness is healed spiritually through faith in the stripes that Jesus bore, and by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Sickness and disease came with the fall. Sin and Sickness are the double curse. But the blood and the stripes are the double cure: The blood for our sins, and the stripes for our Sicknesses.
Moses said: “I will stand on top of the hill.” The hill represents prayer. Prayer is represented by a hill for two reasons: First because real prayer is hard work, and second because the mountain represents a higher realm that is far above the natural.

The rod of God in my hand. What is the significance of the rod of God? First it represents the Word of God. Prayer receives its intensity and power through the Word of God. To pray with power, you must pray the Word. Second, the rod represents the authority we have as the children of God. When Moses hands were raised with the rod of God the children of Israel prevailed, but when his hands and the rod began to fall Amalek prevailed.

If you see that the enemy seems to be gaining ground in your life, the first thing you need to do is ask the questions: First, How’s my prayer life?  Second, How’s my Word life? I mean a serious prayer life, not a now I lay me down to sleep prayer life. And I mean serious Word life. Not just reading a few verses before bed time, I’m talking about a steady consistent flow of the Word of God pouring out of your mouth. 

Jesus defeated the devil with “It is written,” and then He vocalized what was written. If you don’t read it, you can repeat it, and you will end up defeated! It is not what is written that defeats the devil in your life, it’s what is written that lives in your heart and fills your mouth that defeats the devil. The sword of the spirit that defeats the devil is the word of God spoken with authority from a believing heart.

On praying ground everyone is equal. The greatest calling of God is not apostle, prophet, evangelist, preacher, or teacher but prayer warrior! It is prayer that creates the other five. It is through prayer that we put on and activate and hold in place every piece of the armor of God.

There is no such thing as a victorious Christian life without prayer. It is by and through prayer that we wage war. It is through prayer that we receive our provisions for the battle, and through prayer that we receive power for the battle. It is in the prayer closet that the Christian is dressed for the battle.
Before David defeated Goliath publicly he had already conquered the lion and the bear privately, this is symbolic of the prayer battle. All public victory owes its accomplishment to private prayer. Your spiritual life can be easily diagnosed by your prayer life; your prayer life is the thermometer of your spiritual life.

The real battle is Spiritual and the greatest weapon in that battle is Prayer: But it is not just any prayer that secures the hope and the help of the almighty God.

James 5:16 – “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

EFFECTUAL means: "powerful"), full of power to achieve results. FERVENT means” to be hot, to boil" speaks of "fervency" of spirit.

It may be labeled by some as “old fashioned,” but I’m not embarrassed to say that I still believe in Holiness, I still believe in purity in word, in deed, and thought, in mind, and I still believe that Holiness is as holiness does. I still believe that holy men and women of God should dress holy, act holy, and talk holy. I shouldn’t have to know your church affiliation to know you’re a Christian, I should be able to tell it by the life you lead and the company you keep.

It’s not any old prayer that secures the victory, it’s the powerful, intense prayer of the righteous.
A man of prayer once said: "As a painted fire is no fire, a dead man no man, so a cold prayer is no prayer. In a painted fire there is no heat, in a dead man there is no life; so in a cold prayer there is no power, no devotion, and no blessing. Cold prayers are as arrows without heads, as swords without edges, as birds without wings; they pierce not, they cut not, they fly not up to heaven. Cold prayers do always freeze before they get to heaven.”

E. M. Bounds said:
“God can, and does, tolerate many things in the way of infirmity and error in His children. He can, and will pardon sin when the penitent prays, but two things are intolerable to Him - insincerity and luke- warmness. Lack of heart and lack of heat are two things He hates.”

When Moses hands dropped the enemy gained the advantage. When your hands drop, Satan gains the advantage. Look at your own life, and ask yourself this question, Have I lost ground? If the answer is yes, then examine your prayer. This is where the real battle is and this is where it is won or lost. It has been said, “He stands tallest who kneels the most.”

I love this story in the bible because it shows us the power of prayer and the inner workings of prayer. Note that when Moses hands dropped, the enemy gained the advantage. That tells me that no matter how powerful or how anointed a man or woman may be, we need help. Moses Hands got Heavy: That means he grew tired under the burden, under the weight of the need, that means he felt the weight of the burden. If you have ever been under a real prayer burden, then you know exactly what that feels like.

There is such thing as a prayer burden that weighs on you, and presses upon you. Let me add, this is never a bad thing, the burden of the lord is a blessing, it’s an honor to get under the load of prayer, but it can get heavy. We were never meant to carry the load alone. Aaron and Hur became Moses helpers in Prayer. If we are going to win the battles that we are fighting we can’t do it alone: We are fellow laborers, and we are comrades, and we are partners, we are an army!

I believe today this is the message that God wanted me to bring to you. We are in a battle, the battle is not Imaginary, and the real battle is spiritual so we must fight it in the Spirit with spiritual weapons, but we cannot win alone: We need each other.

Every prayer prayed by every person is an integral part of the victory that we win. I Just feel today that there are some that have felt like you have been up on that mountain alone, and you’ve been trying to hold off the hordes of hell all alone. I just feel like somebody today needs to feel the strength of this message. And I feel like somebody needs to be reminded: You are important. I need you, the body of Christ needs your prayers. We are not complete without you. We are comrades, co-workers and fellow laborers together for the Kingdom of God, and for His Glory!

1 comment:

  1. Amen, and thank you for yet another timely message! I have been praying and seeking words to share with a sibling regarding this very situation of spiritual battles she believes to be a natural occurring issue requiring much therapy and medications...I left home many years ago to seek and learn Gods plan, but now must share real truth with those left behind. Praying also God provide the necessary reinforcements to bring about victory for His glory.