"Lord, Teach Us To Pray"

TEXTLuke 11:1-4

INTRODUCTION:

A.      STRANGE REQUEST.

          1.       Have we thought about how to pray?

          2.       We need to learn more about prayer.

B.      WE DON'T PRAY ENOUGH.

          1.       Lack of understanding - Disciples didn't know either.

          2.       The opportunity to learn is here.

I.      WE PRAY BECAUSE IT IS A DUTY & PRIVILEGE    

               ( 1 Thes. 5:17;  Phil. 4:6;  1 John 5:14-15 ).

II.     THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN PRAYING:

A.      NOT TO BE SEEN OF MEN( Mat. 6:5-6 ).

B.      NOT TO BE FULL OF VAIN REPETITIONS( Mat. 6:7-8 ).

C.      FROM THE HEART( Mk. 7:6-9;  John 4:24 ).

D.      CONTRAST THESE PRAYERS( Luke 18:9-14 ).

E.      PUBLIC PRAYERS TO BE UNDERSTOOD BY ALL( 1 Cor. 14:14-19 ).

III.    WHAT SHOULD MY PRAYER CONTAIN?

A.      ADDRESS PRAYER TO GOD( Mat. 6:9;  Col. 3:17 ).

          1.       Is it ever appropriate to address Jesus in prayer?

                   a.       Stephen( Acts 7:54-60 ).

                   b.       Paul( 2 Cor. 12:7-10;  1 Tim. 1:12-17 ).

                   c.       John( Rev. 22:20 ).

          2.       Objections:

                   a.       Stephen saw Jesus so addressed him.  Paul was an apostle who had

                             conversations with Jesus.  John was merely exclaiming his desire.

                   b.       Stephen also "saw" God.  Jesus was at his right hand.  Paul gives

                             himself as an example( Phil. 4:9;  1 Tim. 1:16 ).  To whom does John

                             exlaim?

          3.       Ephesians 5:20.  "... always for all things ... to God ..." No one else named.

                   a.       If it excludes Jesus, it excludes everyone for anything.

                   b.       Matt. 4:10.  Yet Jesus accepts worship( John 20:28;  Luke 7:36-50 ).

B.      THE BODY:

          1.       Praise to God( Acts 4:23-28 ).

          2.       Thanksgiving( Phil. 4:6 ).

                   a.       Spiritual blessings: Jesus, the church, the Bible, etc.

                   b.       Material blessings: Food, clothing, homes, nation, etc.

          3.       Requests( Phil. 4:6 ):

                   a.       Spiritual: forgiveness, wisdom( Jas. 1:5-8 )others

                             ( Eph.6:18-19; Phil. 1:3-5, 9-11 ).

                   b.       Physical( 1 Tim. 2:1-2;  Mat. 6:11;  3 John 2 ).

C.      CLOSE IN THE NAME OF JESUS( Eph. 5:20;  Col. 3:17 ).

D.      DIFFERENT OCCASIONS CALL FOR DIFFERENT PRAYERS & EMPHASIS,

                   ie.communion, before study, eating, retiring, traveling, dismissal.

E.      WHAT ABOUT "THEE" & "THOU" IN PRAYER.

IV.   WHO CAN PRAY?

A.      THOSE SEEKING TO DO HIS WILL( Psa. 34:15 ).

B.      THOSE WHO ASK IN FAITH( James 1:6-7 ).

C.      THOSE WHO ASK ACCORDING TO HIS WILL( 1 John 5:14-15 ).

V.    GOD WILL NOT HEAR EVERY MAN'S PRAYER.

A.      THE FAITHLESS( James 1:6-7 ).

B.      THOSE WHO SEEK MERELY TO SATISFY FLESHLY LUSTS( James 4:3 ).

C.      THOSE WHO REMAIN IN SIN( Isa. 59:1-2; Prov. 28:9; Psa. 66:18 ).

D.      THOSE OUTSIDE CHRIST( John 14:6;  Heb. 7:25;  4:14-16 ).

CONCLUSION:

A.      WE MUST BE IN CHRIST( Gal. 3:26-27 ).

B.      IF YOU WANT TO BE HEARD BY GOD, YOU MUST LISTEN TO HIM!