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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

PRAYING IN THE AFTERMATH

Have you ever been too sick to pray? I doubt it. Unless you were unconscious, you were not. You were probably never hurting too much to cry out to God. You were never too upset to pray. When you most upset you had to tell God.
But did you pray as much or as fervently after you began to feel better? I seldom have, and that is a shame. God often speaks clearly to us through illness, even if it is no more than a cold. But it is hardest to hear His voice when we are distracted by discomfort. When you are feeling a little better, you need to pray for sound insights. That is the time you will be able to fathom the depth of what God has been saying in the time of illness.
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Sunday, May 7, 2017

THE SINNER'S PRAYER

I have tremendous respect for David Platt. I pray nearly every day for God to continue to use him mightily. I recommend listening to his sermons. You can find many of them on YouTube. David has shocked people by preaching against telling people to pray a sinner's prayer. He rightly notes that we have been guilty of communicating to people that they can be right with God by praying those words as a sort of ritual without becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ.
I agree with David. But I also believe a person cannot become a disciple without a direct connection with the Lord. That is prayer. We respond to God's embrace in prayer. If we look at the words we use as a conversion prayer, we see this intent.
We encourage people to pray a prayer of the conviction of sin.
Lord I know I am a sinner.”
We also include repentance.
I want to turn from my sins to you.”
If we are going to lead people to invite Christ into their life, we should warn them that they are doing business with Almighty God. They need to be fearful of praying such words without meaning them.
And inherent is the gospel is the fact that we cannot even repent without God's help. People do not come to God by their sincerity. We must come receiving His forgiveness.
I know You died for me. I accept your forgiveness, and Your gift of eternal life. I trust myself to You.”
One of the problems with using the “sinner's prayer” for evangelism is that it is so easy. It is tempting for us because we don't have to enter into a life-long relationship with the person praying. Just get them to pray these words.
It is also too easy for the person coming to Christ. Someone can pray those words without even thinking. I also believe a person can come to Christ and truly be born again without saying the right words. We might suggest that a person think about the decision she is making over night before she prays such a prayer. Of course, we will need to be sensitive to the person and to the Holy Spirit in the situation. But You can trust Him to bring to completion the work He has begun in a person who has heard the gospel.

http://thinkinginthespirit.blogspot.com/
http://watchinginprayer.blogspot.com/
http://writingprayerfully.blogspot.com/
http://daveswatch.com/