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A Simple Way to Pray

Renewing Your Mind / R.C. Sproul
The Truth Network Radio
October 2, 2022 12:01 am

A Simple Way to Pray

Renewing Your Mind / R.C. Sproul

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October 2, 2022 12:01 am

For Christians, learning to pray is a lifelong pursuit. Continuing his exposition of the gospel of Luke, today R.C. Sproul examines Jesus' model prayer and challenges us to pray with the priorities that Christ has conveyed.

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Today on Renewing Your Mind when we are engaged in prayer. The chief concern that we bring before God or not the simple matters that are plaguing us on a daily basis, but that the main business of our prayers to pray for the success and the extension of the kingdom of God knows we study Scripture, we find the corrections in fundamental ways like what we expect from God.

Lord we cry hopefully because I'm sad or frightened work I need to be rescued to be wrong.

There's nothing wrong with crying out to God like Scripture is filled with people pleading with God in similar ways. I find myself whispering those kinds of prayers a lot more than asking that God's will be done. This will hear from Dr. RC school today the Lord understands our frail humanity and gently corrections as he teaches us to pray this morning were going to continue with our study of the gospel according to storybook and it's another red letter moment because were going to start a whole new chapter.

Chapter 11 in this morning. I'll be reading chapter 11 verses one through four, which is one of the most familiar passages in all of the New Testament for you in this much is here we have Luke's account of Jesus teaching regarding the Lord's prayer. Now came the passenger seat was praying in a certain place when he sees that one of his disciples said to him, Lord, teach us to pray.

Has John also taught his disciples.

So I sent to them when you pray, say, our father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us day by day our daily bread and forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us and do not lead us into temptation but deliver us from the evil one can as I said before that familiarity breeds contempt. We're so familiar with this model prayer Jesus gave to his disciples that is this easy for us to allow it to slip through our fingers and miss the sense of profound importance of the priorities that Jesus gives to us in teaching how we should pray but again this morning.

We've heard this word from the Lord Jesus Christ provided for us through the superintendence of inspiration of God, the Holy Spirit, please receive it with all of God's authority. Let us pray. Certainly our Lord. There is no time in our lives when we are more feeble unless accomplished in one way, Bobby, for you in prayer, there is perhaps no less than we have learned so poorly in this one for instruction.

So we ask that in this hour, you would renew our understanding of how it is we should pray for we ask it in Jesus name, amen. His name was Peter. He had a barbershop in a small town and one afternoon when he had one of his regular customers, and is Jeremy was trimming his hair. He looked as the front door of the shop opened and he noticed instantly that the man who was entering his barbershop was a notorious outlaw and that this outlaw was wanted by the authorities that were alive and a princely sum had been instituted as a reward for his capture and when the barber was finished with the customer in his chair and he left the shop, the outlaw, step forward and sat down and asked the barber for a haircut and a and so Peter lathered the man's face and his neck. Case dropped is razor and applied it to the man's face and then to his neck and as he had the sharp edge of the blade pressed against the throat of this outlaw Peter knew that all had to do was exert a simple amount of force, and he could slip the man's throat kill him on the spot step forward and claim the reward, but the last thing that was in Peter's mind was the idea of killing the outlaw because I was wanted by the authorities. This man was Peter's hero.

Not only his hero, but his mentor and spiritual thing. The man of course in the barber chair was Martin Luther in the town of and while Peter was driving the great reformer. He took this opportunity to ask him a spiritual question. They knew of Luther's reputation not only as being a brilliant theologian and courageous reformer, but of being a Titan of prayer giving himself to prayer every day for 2 to 3 hours and so he said Dr. Luther, could you please teach me how to pray the same question that the disciples asked of Jesus when they notice the obvious connection between Jesus life in Jesus prayer is so Luther said to master Peter Barber of Edinburg. Certainly I will teach you something of this matter and after is stray when his haircut. Luther went back to his study and he picked up his pen and he wrote a small booklet, not for the world simply for his barber in a title it a simple way to pray here every year in this church.

Jeff Cooper leads a study for our people on this very question. A simple way to pray that we may be instructed and become more advanced in our own abilities of coming before the Lord in prayer well. In any case, that little book simple way to pray is still available.

We can all read it. We can be instructed by its budget profit from it. As Luther indicated to his barber first, we must take the time and the discipline to memorize three portions of Scripture we need to memorize the 10 Commandments. We need to memorize the apostles Creed and then we need to memorize the Lord's prayer and the reason for this, as Luther pointed out is that these three portions of Scripture can guide us in our seasons of prayer and for illustrative purposes this morning. I'll restrict my attention to the third portion that is to be memorized, namely the Lord's prayer because that's the text we are dealing with. And before I splaying how Luther used it in prayer may make to observations. First of all, when Jesus gave this model prayer. He didn't say to his disciples. When you pray, pray this is not that he was giving us a mandate simply to recite this prayer over and over and over again as is our cost another wrong with that. Of course, but what he was saying is that when you pray, pray like this. This is the model I'm giving you this is the example to show you how you should pray now as we look at the preaching of Jesus. We notice that at the center of his preaching was the proclamation of the kingdom of God. When we look at this model prayer we see at the center of its concern is the kingdom of God. When Archie Parrish visited us several years ago and gave some instruction to our nascent congregation on how to pray. Taught these principles of what he has called kingdom focused prayer, that is to say that when we are engaged in prayer. The chief concern that we bring before God or not the simple matters that are plaguing us on a daily basis, but that the main business of our prayer is to pray for the success and the extension of the kingdom of God.

Let's look for a moment at this prayer that Jesus gave I'm not going to give an exposition of it. I did that in some detail.

When we looked at the version given by Matthew.

But I want to give you the lesson that Luther gave Peter when he said, when you pray, use the Lord's prayer. For example, as a guy to direct your prayer and what he meant was something like this that when you pray, you get on your knees and your sale God, you who are from everlasting to everlasting you who are immortal, invisible, the only wise God, you are the one who buys attributes infinite eternal simple, immutable mission's on the present. You are all of these magnificent things of God. You transcend us by your magistrate to such a degree that we are absolutely overwhelmed that we can come into your presence and say the father and the you are being fills every corner of this universe and that there is nowhere that we can flee from your presence that you are here and there and everywhere at every moment, yet your natural habitat of God is not this world for you dwell in heaven where of the earth earthly with euros heaven, heavenly course that part of the prayer is merely the address. It contains no great petition. The first petition of the Lord's prayer that Jesus gave to his disciples, the number one priority that Jesus gave for us to pray for is what God the name may be regarded as sacred, holy treated but only with respect but with reverence and without termination by every creature on heaven and earth metal God. We live in a world that is profane where your name is blasphemed every hour privately and publicly take a moment illustrate my wife favorite television shows are these makeover programs were peoples homes are redecorated by professionals while they are away, waiting to see the handiwork of the craftsman who commended redo the dwelling places you seen these programs best is addicted to them. If I leave the room. She says please push 229 which is DirecTV channel for these makeovers. So after you watch all of the improvements going on and then the time comes for the owners to come back and see the transformation and you watch them command and you see the surprise and the shock and the delay in the light of their faces. He realized that at least 80% of responding with the same words Mike say and if there's ever a time that I come infinitesimally close to understanding Jesus feelings when he was on the cross what he says father forgive them for they know not what they do. My spirit sinks within me when I hear these people use the name of God in a flippant manner and never given a thought. I want to say to them, don't you know that God will not hold you guiltless for using his name in this cavalier way. But it's part of our culture work. Some terms you, but there are some that are still bleeped out on broadcast television, but not these blasphemies the name of God. We are a nation with no fear, no respect for God not I know I understand that Christians are capable of any sin murdered dog dollar as we know, and I know the Christians without thinking in a thoughtless manner can use the name of God in a disrespectful way. I know Christians can do that but I have to be candid with you. I really don't know how I don't know how you have any love and reverence for God himself and be so irreverent with the use of his name again. I guess it's possible I just don't know how and if you are examining your own life in your own soul.

And this is something that you do regularly. This may be your first clue and best clue about the state of your salvation you may be dreadfully lost and not aware of it. Jesus that is not what goes in a man's mouth that the files and then it's what comes up now again I realized in our culture. This is no big deal is not all that important. Jesus made it the number one priority for our prayer. God give us a sense of reverence for who you are that your name may be hallowed because you are holy and we are not in Jesus that we might pray God we live in a democracy kingdoms are a thing of the past we elect our leaders sovereignty is foreign to us and we are altogether allergic to it that we are but give us of God a love and a hunger and thirst for a kingdom you've given us the king and he is our King but the world is blind to his kingdom. We pray that that kingdom that is so hidden from the eyes of fallen humanity that all God you will like it. No, that your kingdom will commandeer like it already is manifested in heaven. Oh God, that your will will be done on this earth by people who are zealous to obey you, as the saints in heaven are every hour so we pray that your kingdom would come, and that your will would be done on earth as it is in heaven, nor needs you know we can survive without the basics the necessities of life every day of God.

We need our bread. We need those things that sustain us every one of which comes from your gracious hands every piece of breath every drop of water comes from your hand and we ask that you would continue to sustain us and that you would take away our anxiety that we may not be anxious about what we should eat or what we should drink, or what we should wear, but give us the capacity to look at the lilies of the field who neither spin or so and you array them with such glory father make us ever grateful for these necessary gifts that you bestow so liberally upon us. No father we come to you acknowledge that we have rebelled against you with committed cosmic treason.

We've defied your law. We have asserted our wills over yours and the only way we can possibly stand in your presence is if you would forgive us.

We thank you that you have made us just not by our achievements, not by our merit, not by righteousness but we been close by the righteousness of Jesus is given the gift of that covered our sinfulness on our sins that are the scarlet have been made white as snow. Though they were Crimson is made them like wool for father. It's against you and you only the we've sent so we ask that you would blot out our transgressions car just with the soup make us claim let the bones what you have broken. Rejoice because as far as the east is from the west, you have removed our transgressions from that though we have been freeing receiving your grace and mercy we have been loathes to extend that to others.

We have not forgiven the debts against us as we have asked you to forgive our debt against you, and we also know of other that you are so holy that you are completely incapable of ever in us to sin. Rather, you call us to flee from sin come out of the darkness and into the light and so we know that he would never tempt us to send in the sense of an enticement that we ask that you would never put us in that place we are naked and exposed to the wiles of the devil. Don't put us in the place where we are so affected to the best of our obedience or of our fidelity to you, but like Joe before he was attacked. Oh God put a hedge around the house and protect us from the world and the flesh, the devil, but from ourselves and from our own evil inclinations and deliver us from Satan, from the enemy, the one who goes about as a roaring lion, seeking to divide will be well. The one who disguises himself as an angel of light that he made deceive us and accuse us of bring us into despair and to ruin, deliver us from Panet Ross Leavell war Prince of darkness for yours of God is the King we live in it.

We love it when enjoy it. We reap the benefits of its we share in the inheritance of the legacy of the king is not that yours have ourselves we have no power.

All power resides in you and you alone the power that we have is borrowed to receive and so forgive us when we boast of our own strengths as if we ourselves were the source of glory glory.

Do we are feeder, clay, Fraser.where the first birthday we come to you with nothing and I but also glory flawed honor belong to you and to the Lamb who is worthy to receive glory and power and honor, and dominion now and for ever more. See how easy it is to use the Lord's prayer is a framework a jumping off place for much greater fullness of prayer and when you finish with that because I have no other gods before me. And you can take off on that I believe in God the father Almighty. Megan said take off on that. I confess to you I use this method frequently. I love it, but I've never once one season of prayer made it all the way through the 10 Commandments, the apostles Creed and the Lord's prayer just to much there to incite our soul's pray so much Luther did for his barber. Jesus did for us. He taught us how to pray. He taught us how to pray like sheep right and he taught us how to pray for the things he prayed for. That's what godly prayer is all about that you pray with the mind of Christ that you pray like Kevin prays on Sunday morning during the pastoral prayer wears prayers are filled with Scripture and with the word of God. If you really want to learn how to pray, immerse yourself in the Psalms of the Old Testament because there you have spirit inspired prayer. I'm sure Jesus was the poster that so if you want to add to the Lord's prayer, the apostles Creed in the 10 Commandments, fill your soul with the song, our church will only be as strong as our so I pray that we will hear. Today, the mass learning how to pray is that the very heart of the Christian faith is. Jesus showed us how to submit to the father and humbly request his help and provision the Lord's prayer has been our focus today here and Renewing Your Mind. As we have continued our verse by verse series through the gospel of Luke Dr. RC Sproul spent more than 50 years studying and teaching Scripture and his careful insight is so evident in the message we just heard we returned to the series. Each Sunday in a resource for today will be a helpful study companion for you throughout the rest of the series. Contact us today with a donation of any amount and we will provide you with a digital download of RC's commentary on Luke. It's an opportunity to learn from a trusted teacher, and theologian as he leads us through God's word, you can request this resource with your donation of any amount when you go to Renewing Your want to thank you for being with us today, but I also want to remind you that we are not the church. We hope that you are a member of a Bible believing church there in your local community connecting ourselves to the body of Christ is vital to our growth as Christians availing ourselves to the means of grace and placing ourselves under the accountability of elders gods under shepherds. Our goal here is leader ministries is to come alongside the local church and provide you with resources that help you in your understanding of God Renewing Your Mind is the listener supported outreach of winter ministries. Again, thank you for being with us and I hope you make plans to join us again next week

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