Dr. A. C. Dixon, a fine expositor of the Word of God, said that when we depend upon organization, we get what organization can do. When we depend upon education, we get what education can do. When we depend upon money, we get what money can do. When we depend upon singing and preaching, we get what singing and preaching can do. But when we depend upon prayer, we get what God can do.
There are several recurring themes throughout the book of James, and one of them is the power of prevailing prayer. He’s talking about the prayers of intercession, not just getting the things that we need, but helping our friends to have their needs met.
The Command We Should Mind
1. Prayer Survey (For each statement or question, circle all responses that apply.)
- How often do you pray?
Never occasionally weekly daily many times daily
- What types of things do you pray for?
crises/emergencies important issues all issues regarding my family
spiritual issues only almost everything
- Describe your prayer life.
non-existent boring frustrating vibrant
- I pray for:
mostly myself myself and my immediate family friends and family
the world the lost all of these
2. God commands us to pray. Look up the following references and note what their instruction is.
- 2 Chronicles 7:14 - ___________________________________
- Philippians 4:6 - ______________________________________
- 1 Thessalonians 5:17 - _________________________________
- Luke 18:1 - _________________________________________
- James 5:16 - ________________________________________
3. Explain the following quote in your own words: "You can do more than pray after you pray, but you can do no more than pray until you pray."
4. What are some areas you need to pray over and leave in God's hands?
The Confession We Must Make
5. Why do you think confession is so important?
6. What do you think would be necessary for a great revival?
- great preaching
- great singing
- good timing
- confession and repentance
While all of these are good, a look at what sparked some of the greatest revivals reveals a spirit of brokenness that led to confession and repentance. Look on the Internet for the history of some of these revivals. You might search for The Welsh Revival, The Shantung Revival and the Great Awakening.
7. Confession is also necessary for personal revival and is the first step in praying. Right now, is there any unconfessed sin that is hindering your prayer life? Confess it now.
The Conditions We Should Meet
8. “Because not all prayer is answered, not all prayer gets to God.” What do you think is meant by this statement? What would keep prayer from getting to God?
9. Read the following verses and find the condition(s) each mandates:
- James 1:6 - __________________________
- James 4:3 - __________________________
- James 5:16b (find 2) - _____________________ _____________________
10. Referring to John 14:14 and John 15:7, what are the right things to ask for in prayer?
The Character We Ought to Manifest
Elijah was a man of prayer. He was not a perfect man, but God answered his prayers. Let’s look at some of his qualities found in 1 Kings 18:42-43:
11. He got off by himself. Where do you go to be by yourself to pray?
12. He had a posture of humility. How do you show your brokenness before God in prayer?
13. He was persistent. How do you keep your requests consistently and urgently before God?
We Have Not Because We Ask Not
14. When you pray, you receive something only God can do. Briefly describe a time when this was true of your prayer experience.
15. James 4:2 says, “. . . ye have not, because ye ask not.” What do you need to ask God for right now?
What this world needs is what God can do. What our cities need is what God can do. What our homes need is what God can do. What our churches need is what God can do. Ask. Seek. Knock. (Luke 11:9)
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