Prayer: Boldly Approaching God's Throne

2 - Are Other Things Crowding Out Prayer in Your Life?

By Dr. Paul M. Elliott
Who ever lived a busier life than our Saviour? Yet who found more time for prayer?

From the TeachingtheWord Bible Knowledgebase

Part two of a series of selections from Profiting From the Word by A. W. Pink. Read part one.

Edited by Dr. Paul M. Elliott, president of TeachingTheWord Ministries

Who ever lived a busier life than our Saviour? Yet who found more time for prayer?

In the first article in this series, Arthur W. Pink spoke of the prayerless Christian as "a contradiction in terms." Yet research has shown that most present-day Christians, even many pastors, spend very little time before the throne of grace.

In the next section of this chapter from Profiting From the Word titled "The Scriptures and Prayer", Pink points out that the foremost cure for letting other things crowd out prayer in your life is to see the vital importance of prayer in the pages of Scripture, and in the earthly life of Christ:

We are profited from the Scriptures when we are brought to realize the deep importance of prayer. It is really to be feared that many present-day readers (and even students) of the Bible have no deep convictions that a definite prayer-life is absolutely essential to a daily walking and communing with God, as it is for deliverance from the power of indwelling sin, the seductions of the world, and the assaults of Satan. If such a conviction really gripped their hearts, would they not spend far more time on their faces before God?

It is worse than idle to reply, "A multitude of duties which have to be performed crowd out prayer, though much against my wishes." But the fact remains that each of us takes time for anything we deem to be imperative. Who ever lived a busier life than our Saviour? Yet who found more time for prayer? If we truly yearn to be suppliants and intercessors before God and use all the available time we now have, He will so order things for us that we shall have more time.

The lack of positive conviction of the deep importance of prayer is plainly evidenced in the corporate life of professing Christians. God has plainly said, "My house shall be called the house of prayer" (Matthew 21:13). Note [in this particular context], not "the house of preaching and singing," but of prayer. Yet, in the great majority of even so-called orthodox churches, the ministry of prayer has become a negligible quantity. There are still evangelistic campaigns, and Bible-teaching conferences, but how rarely one hears of two weeks set apart for special prayer! And how much good do these "Bible conferences" accomplish if the prayer-life of the churches is not strengthened?

At this point, I believe it is worth noting that many of the great awakenings and revivals in church history began with the moving of the people of God, by the Spirit of God, to devote much time to corporate prayer. Those "waves of prayer" were characterized chiefly by repentance from sin so that His people might be clean vessels for the Master's use, and a corporate calling upon the Lord to begin a mighty work among them. Pink continues:

But when the Spirit of God applies in power to our hearts such words as, "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation" (Mark 14:38), "In every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:6), "Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving" (Colossians 4:2), then are we being profited from the Scriptures.

Next: Do You Understand That You Often Do Not Know How to Pray?


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