Prayer: Defined

LESSON 1 of 9

A.  The word “Prayer” is not in the Gospel or Epistles of John, but “prayer” is tied into John’s life more then the other disciples.  It seemed there was a greater quality of love in John’s life.  One can not really be involved in prayer if there is no love in there life.


B.  Prayer should be natural like breathing.  We do not have to think or stop doing something to breath.  Prayer should be build in us.  Prayer is communion with God.  Prayer is always to God.


C.  Now you do not have to pray, you really don’t.  But if you do not pray you will not get very far in God.  If you have a hunger in you, a desire “to draw nigh (near) to God,


D.  It should not be a duty to pray, but a joy.  We at first “get with it” with duty prayer, but in time God will lead us out and into a deeper more fulfilling communion with Him.  He will lead you by His Spirit from duty prayer to your life become prayer.


E.  What we call prayer today would be typical of a religious duty or activity in the NT.   Prayer is not a duty or religious activity, prayer is of the heart.  Prayer is communion with God.  Our life is to be a constant prayer (communion with) to God.


F.  A religious prayer.  Isaiah 58:1-14 (read)

1.  v1 – Is house of Jacob sins.

2.  v2 – Looks and sounds good, but religion looks and sounds good.  Religion has an outward appearance.

3.  v3 – Bending God arm.  If we can not have faith and believe in God we force Him.  God, I will prayer and fast, you better give me what I want.

4.  v4 – Does not matching up with v2

5.  v5 – God said is this really what I want?

6.  v6,7 – God said, I do not want religion, I want “righteous living.”  God is not religious.  Real prayer leads us into righteous living.

7.  v8 – Righteous living leads us to the glory of God.

“Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.”  (Matthew 5:8)

God is after heart purity!  Prayer (communion with God, not asking for healing or material things) is what leads us in “His Way” to heart purity.

8.  v9 – We then BECOME like God.  After all we were created in His image.  We need to BECOME like the Father, just like Jesus did.

G.  Prayer is not talking to God.  Our best prayers have no words, often our best prayers are groaning.


H.  We must remember Jesus gets everything from the Father.  He does not do or say anything of Himself, only those things that He sees the Father doing and what His Father would be saying.  So he got this prayer from the Father.


I.  Prayer is something alone, between you and God.


J.  The direction of prayer is ALWAYS to the Father:  When Jesus said this it was the first spoken to God, usually said was “Avie”  “my Father.”  “Abba Father” meets “direct address to the Father.”  Now Jesus was not teaching the disciples to say Abba Father, but is teaching them to pray directly to the Father.


K.  The proper attitude in Prayer is “Hallowed be thy name.”  God name is to be “hallow” a most holy thing, purity,  not hollow or usable.  God does not operate by formula and rules, but by divine spiritual principles.  “In the Name of Jesus” is not a formula for God to operate, we must be careful.  God seeks worshipers  in spirit and truth.



L.  We need to allow God to be God, then God can gather us into Himself in oneness with Him.  1 + 0 = 1 (we together)  not 1 + 1 = 2.

So we can have His desires in us.  So we know what the way He takes and we can then take the way He is taking.  So we may walk in step in harmony with Him.


M.  Many Christian do not want to get in Him.  They will have to lose themselves.  Not to many draw nigh to God, because He is a consuming fire.  No one wants to be consumed.  We would really rather give God  things we do not mind see get consumed,  do not draw nigh to Him.


N.  Proper motivation,   “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”  (verse 10)  But if we do not draw nigh then He can not bring that oneness, He has no opportunity.  How can God be God if we always want Him to dance to our tune, to do what we want Him to do.  We say,  I have given up all for you Lord.  I want a return on my investment.


O.  “Give us this day our daily bread. (verse 11).  In the Greek, “Give us the bread today we need.”  We do not know what our need is.  We need to take on His desires and His need for our life.


P.  Prayer is the way into harmony with God in meeting needs not our, but also others.  No where in the Bible does it say Jesus prayed for the sick, it says He healed the sick.  (Charles’ brother story)  What does God want? What do we want??  We are to know what God wants so we can harmonize in meetings needs with God.      


Q.  Prayer helps us see what the Father is saying and doing.  Healing the sick then is so easy and not a struggle.  (Charles’ story lady)


R.  The character of Prayer.  “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.”  (verse 12)


S.  God’s intention in prayer is to bring us together with Him.  “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:”  (Verse 13)

He does not intent to lead us into temptation, but He intends to deliver us from evil.  This happens as we come together in communion (prayer).


T.  Our temple is to be a house of prayer, not a den of thieves to steal from God and whatever we can from God.   Put $10 in the offering to get $100 back.  Oh no, we are to become the very expression of God.  All I  want is Him.  And, to be caught up in His glory to be this expression through prayer, communion with Him.