Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we Continue in the book of 1 Chronicles with Chapter 17 and we see how God promises blessings to David and David's prayer of acceptance. What catches my eye is how David prayed in verses as he 1 humbled himself 2 praised God 3 recognized God's blessings, and 4 accepted God's decisions, promises, and commands. In making application we see a practical pattern of prayer. Some of us treat God as a "drive thru" giving God our laundry list of how "He" can bless "us" while in reality it is "us" who need to humble ourselves before the Lord and follow this pattern of Prayer.
When we follow David's example we see who we are in relation to who God is and our prayers become, "Lord, your will be done in my life - you are in control - you are the potter and I am the clay - show me what to do and where you would have me to go" Once in this position of humility we can be used of God in a mighty way to do His Will. How about you? Do you pray with humility to do the Lord's Will in your life? Let us learn from our text today and the pattern of prayer that David exampled before us to humble ourselves before the Lord.
And if he wasn't prepared and hadn't made appropriate confession of sin and sacrifice for sin, he could be killed in there. It was a frightening place. When God came down on Mount Sinai, there was lightning and there was thunder and there was smoke and the people were told not to touch the holy mountain or they would die. God was truly what Hebrews 12 calls Him, a consuming fire.
There was a sense of Even Moses was told you can't see My full glory and survive, you can only see a little of My back parts, Exodus So the Jews had this sense that there was an inapproachability concerning God. But at the same time, that they were separated from God and they knew that and they did not have immediate access into His presence. Only one did and only once a year, the high priest on the Day of Atonement. Still the Old Testament was clear that while they couldn't come into the presence of God, they It was as if they couldn't go to see Him but they could make a phone call.
There was a way to get to God and that was through their prayers. The holy ones, said Psalm 50 verse 15 says, "Call on Me in the day of trouble. I will rescue you and you will honor Me. He heard my voice out of His temple. And that was the view of prayer in the Old Testament. They believed that prayer was also a mighty weapon.
They didn't doubt its power. The rabbis used to say that all are equals when they pray before God, women and slaves, sage and simpleton, poor and rich. Psalm says, "Oh Thou that hearest prayer, unto Thee shall all flesh come. In fact, Psalm 65 has a commentary, a midrash written on that psalm, in which the rabbis said, "A human king can only listen to two or three people at the same time. He can't hearken to more.
God is not so, for all men may pray to Him and He hearkens to them all simultaneously. Men's ears become satisfied with hearing a few, but God's ears are never satiated. He is never wearied by men's prayers, no matter how many there are. Prayer, they taught, the rabbis did, was greater than sacrifice. Prayer should be constant. One rabbi, writing in the Talmud said, "Honor the physician before you have need of Him. Pray when you're in prosperity, before misfortune comes, anticipate and pray.
So they taught in the Old Testament that prayer was to be unceasing. And if you go to the Old Testament, and I won't take time to go in detail, but you will see the following elements in the prayers of the Old Testament, those that are written in Scripture. One, they were characterized by adoration, by adoration, love and praise. Psalm 34, "I will bless the Lord at all times.
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His praise shall continually be in my mouth. Secondly, Old Testament Jewish praying was characterized not only by adoration, but by thanksgiving. You find many prayers in the Old Testament that were prayers of gratitude, prayers of thanksgiving. I think usually of Jonah chapter 2 verse 9. Jonah says, "I will sacrifice to Thee with a voice of thanksgiving.
And the rabbis used to say that one day all prayers will be discontinued, except the prayers of thanksgiving. And we will spend forever continually offering those to God. Prayers of adoration, prayers of thanksgiving were offered in the Old Testament to God. Thirdly: the element of recognizing God's holiness, recognizing God's holiness.
Many of the prayers refer to Him as holy. They refer to Him as the glorious God, the One who's high and lifted up, the One who is almighty, the One who is Lord, and on and on and on, recognizing God's transcendent glory.
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And there is also an element of submission in the prayers of the Old Testament. There is a desire to please God affirmed in those prayers, a desire to obey God. You just take Psalm You have verses. In most of those verses there is an affirmation of obedience. You have it times out of verses. So when you look at Old Testament praying, you find adoration, you find thanksgiving, you find recognition of the glory and holiness of God, and you find affirmation of one's desire to please and obey God.
Then you find confession. Psalm 32, Psalm 51, Psalm 26 says, "I will wash my hands in innocence and go about Thine altar, oh Lord You have many, many such prayers in the Old Testament. There's always that element of confession of sin and cleansing of heart in coming to God in prayer.
And sixthly, in my little list, prayer was collective. Prayer was collective. When the Jews prayed, they tended not so much to pray for individuals as to pray for the community. They embraced their people, they embraced their nation. They prayed for the salvation of Israel. They prayed for the preservation of Jerusalem. They prayed for the protection of the people of God. They prayed for deliverance from their enemies. They prayed for triumph in their battles. They prayed for what was needed of food in the midst of their trouble and famine.
Their prayers tend to be for all Israel to be redeemed, for all the promises and covenants to Israel to come to pass. They prayed to receive the fullness of the blessing of God on them as a people. And so their prayers were collective. And then number seven in my list, Old Testament praying had a tone of perseverance.
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They prayed in a continual way. Moses prayed and prayed and prayed, you remember, prayed for the mercy of God. In Deuteronomy chapter 3 he kept praying for the mercy of God and God responded and said to him, "Enough from you. Speak no more to Me of this matter. There was a persistence. There was an importunity to their prayers.
And it was after, you remember, the sin of the golden calf that Moses interceded to God on behalf of disobedient Israel and didn't just do it for a He interceded according to Deuteronomy 9, he interceded for forty days in relentless intercession on behalf of the sin of his people, pleading with God. Also their prayers had a note of humility in them. They very often prayed for the will of God. They very often prayed, "May it be Your good pleasure, God," to do so and so and so and so. So that's a little overview of the kind of praying that you see in the Old Testament, characterized by adoration, gratitude, recognition of God's glory and holiness, commitment to obedience, confession of sin, and penitence.
Prayer was collective, embracing the people of God and in that sense it was unselfish. It was persistent and with a note and a heart of humility. All of those elements are in the true and the pure Old Testament praying. That was their approach. That's how they prayed.
And you can see it in particular all through the Psalms. Now we're going to see exactly those same elements in this prayer. We're going to see adoration.
We're going to see gratitude involved in this. We're going to see a recognition of the holiness and the glory of God. We're going to see a desire to submit here, a willingness to be obedient. And so what I want you to understand is this. In this prayer Jesus is reestablishing the original, divine formula for prayer. And as I said, it had been lost in Israel. Hypocrisy had taken over and they were a If anyone questions that, all you have to do is remember that they were led to scream for the blood of their Messiah and He was executed by the Romans as an expression of the will of the people.
They were a fickle, superficial, hypocritical people led by leaders of such characteristics.
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And what Jesus is doing is going back to what the Old Testament taught. How you approach God has always been the same. You come to Him with adoring praise and love. You come to Him with gratitude and thanks because He's the source of everything. You come to Him pursuing His glory. You come to Him submitting to His will. You come to Him confessing your sin. You come to Him unselfishly embracing all who are within the framework of His holy purposes. You come to Him humbly and you come to Him persistently. The Jews even used to say that there was an element of prayer that was necessary.
They called it kawana, kawana. That's almost an untranslatable word. It means to possess intense devotion. It means to possess intense passion, or focus on God so that the mind and the heart are fixed on God. The Jews used to say you come to God with your head bowed down but your heart lifted up. You direct your heart toward God in awe, in fear and shaking, or trembling.
This is how they were to pray and they prayed this way. By the time you get to Jesus in the New Testament age, that's gone. That's gone. It's been replaced by prayers adapted from the Gentiles, mindless repetition of endless phrases strung together in ceremonial fashion without any heart at all. Their praying is also a way to boast and parade themselves in public, rather than to cry out to God in private.
Their prayer focuses on the people watching, not on God hearing. And that's why the disciples are saying to Jesus, "We need to learn how to do this. We've been raised in this culture. We don't know how to do this. And so, here Jesus gives us a framework for praying, a framework for praying. This is not just a prayer to recite. In fact, this is never repeated by any group of believers anywhere in the Scripture, in the book of Acts or the epistles. It is really a model for prayer.
It's a model.
It's a It's a framework on which you put the rest of the flesh. For example, I guess it's like sermon notes, you know. I have in my hand some notes which I write down and bring into the pulpit. Do I read those notes? Are those notes vital to me? They're the framework. Bestselling Series. Harry Potter. Popular Features. New Releases. Description Prayer is the key to the heart of God that unlocks the door to all the resources of heaven. It enables us to tap into a supernatural power source when human effort is insufficient. The simple act of talking to God is our main method of establishing and maintaining a vibrant relationship with our Maker.