Thursday, 11/25/21 – Prayer: Is it Real?

Prayer: Is it Real?

As it turns out today’s discipleship blog is also on the topic of Prayer — our speaker’s message this past Sunday and the focus of every post this week. Perhaps the Lord is trying to tell us something? What do you think it might be? Do you believe in prayer? Do you believe that prayer can actually accomplish something? Do you truly believe there is Someone out there listening? Or do you think prayer is just an exercise religious people do to make themselves feel better?

These questions are extremely important. In fact, they have a lot to do with whether or not one’s prayers are answered at all! Scripture is very clear on this. In Hebrews we read: “…anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him..” (Heb. 11:6b). In other words if we don’t believe that God is out there and listening there’s no point in pretending we are talking to Him. If we don’t believe that God can answer our prayers there’s no point in making them.

This is only reasonable. Who among us would pick a random number from a telephone directory, call it, and ask for someone whom we know full well not to be there? Or who would call a lumber yard and order a pizza knowing full well they cannot provide it? And so it is with God. As the verse cited above actually begins, “Without faith it is impossible to please God” (Heb. 11:6a).

Ah yes, this stuff called “faith” — this intangible ‘something’ the definition of which opens this chapter: “…faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Heb. 11:1). Confidence… assurance… but how do we get such confidence and assurance in such a silent, unseen a Being as God?

Truth is, most of us already know quite well! We grow in confidence and assurance in God just as we grow in confidence and assurance in people. We spend time with them. We learn over time whether they do or do not keep their word. We ask them for help and they give it. They ask a thing of us, and we do it! A mutual trust grows.

It is the same with God. We trust Him, put Faith in Him, just as we do other silent and unseen things. Things like love, convictions, To Thomas, who doubted then saw, Jesus said, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:29). That’s you and I. Do you believe?

The Apostle John wrote,

“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” (1 John 5:13-15)

Be assured in that belief… and pray.

Press on…

Are you interested in being discipled one-on-one in the fundamentals of life in Christ? Or, would you like to begin this journey by turning from your current path and committing your path to Christ? — Use the Contact page and we’ll get you started.

Tuesday, 3/10/20 – Pressing on…

Links on your Anchor chain

woman sitting in front of body of water

Do you trust God?

I’m not asking you a theological question here… I’m not asking “Is God trustworthy.” I’m asking you a personal question “Do you trust God?

Scripture tells us that God is bending over backwards to assure us of His reliability. — No, really… Let’s look more closely at one of the passages pastor Andrew shared with us last Sunday…

Speaking of God’s plan to bring salvation to humanity through Abraham, the Jewish peoples, and ultimately in Christ the author writes, “Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath:” (Heb. 6:17 – KJV)

That word “confirmed” in the original has the meaning of “to act as a mediator between litigating or covenanting parties” or “to accomplish something by interposing between two parties. It means to mediate, to act as a sponsor or surety. I rather like how the New English Translation puts it: “He intervened with an oath.”

white and black anchor with chain at daytime

In fact, when we read a couple of verses later that “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul” (v. 19) that word “anchor” really means something “crooked” a thing that folds back toward itself. Like the crook of an arm as it extends out from the torso… you know, anchor-shaped.

God is bending back upon Himself. He is by nature immutable, unchanging, and if that is not enough He further swears by the Highest authority there is – Himself — that what He says is True and Reliable.

But now the question is to you: “Do you trust God?

20200308_204435I found it interesting to learn that what primarily holds an anchored ship in place is not only the grip or weight of the anchor but also the weight and friction of the chain length on the sea bed. (The anchor chain of the Titanic measured some 1,200 feet.)

Taken as a further analogy the links of the chain could represent the days of the believer’s life. As time goes on a Christian accumulates more and more experiences of Christ’s faithfulness, His interventions, peace and Presence, comfort and insight. Each of these adds a link to one’s personal life chain of trust experiences with God. By them God demonstrates of Himself what is also true of us that “He who is faithful in what is least” can be trusted to be “faithful also in much” (Luke 16:10).

The longer your chain, the more secure is your anchor. Trust God — add a few links to your anchor chain today.

“I have never known a man who received Christ and ever regretted it.” – Billy Graham.

More tomorrow…

Note: Perhaps you have not yet made Christ your Anchor at all. Would you like to? Use the Contact page and we’ll point you to Him.

To hear Pastor Andrew’s complete message, go to the Lincoln Baptist Church website and look under ‘Sermons Online’ for the Mar. 8 message.