The disciples of Jesus were amazed at His prayer life. They were so impressed that they asked, “Lord, teach us to pray . . ..” Luke 11:1, NIV
Jesus responded with a model prayer of sincerity and reality in acts of worship. The prayer (verses 2 through 4) contains five petitions designed to give God glory and meet human needs.
“Father, hallowed be your name” – Our Heavenly Father is to be addressed with reverence, worship, respect, and a sense of a loving relationship of intimacy and obedience.
“Your kingdom come” – While the kingdom of God had already been manifested in the coming of Christ, His followers must pray that it be spread to the ends of the earth. Even though God is sovereign, His sovereignty is not recognized in all human hearts.
“Give us each day our daily bread” – We are creatures of dependence and need bread for our bodies and food for our souls. We are to be willing to work, but we must deeply depend on the faithfulness and abundance of God’s endless resources.
“Forgive us our sins” – Forgiveness for saints and sinners is more important than bread. For the Christian whose sins are forgiven in the new birth, there will come peace with God. The sooner we learn to seek the fullness of the Holy Spirit, the more victory we will have over sin; but if the believer does sin, there should be an immediate confession in order to be forgiven and cleared. Let us remember that we cannot be forgiven if we fail to forgive others! (Matthew 6:14)
“Lead us not into temptation” – Christian believers are not exempt from temptation. Although this may seem that we are asking to be exempt from temptation, the real request to be made is “deliver us from Satan when we face temptation.”
While the Lord’s prayer as given by Jesus to His earliest disciples is still a wonderful model, we must remember that Jesus had already introduced a more powerful approach to prayer—He promised the coming of the Holy Spirit who would help them in prayer. Jesus was telling His disciples that sending the Holy Spirit would enlarge greatly their legacy of prayer. When He first began describing the work of the Holy Spirit within them, He gave the Holy Spirit three titles: Comforter, Counselor, and Convictor. But toward the end of His ministry he added a fourth title – that of Helper! The Holy Spirit would help them pray.
The apostle Paul explains how the Spirit helps us pray in Romans 8:26-28, (NIV):
“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit inter- cedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” We find this in John’s Gospel, chapter 16, verses 23 and 24 (NIV): “In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”
Even though Jesus had taught the disciples how to pray, He wants them to know that after the Spirit was poured out on the church, a Spirit-filled believer would pray with an assurance because he or she would be praying according to the will of God. The Spirit would never inspire a self-centered prayer, except in confession and repentance.
Believe me, Christian readers, Spirit-anointed praying in faith is the major weapon in spiritual warfare. It’s the weapon that the Bible tells us will destroy Satanic strongholds (II Corinthians 10: 3-5). How desperately we need prayer warriors in the 21st century who will remember the power of the Holy Spirit in our enlarged legacy of prayer.
Before Jesus began His ministry – before He faced the temptations of Satan and before He performed miracles of casting out demons, walking on the water, healing the sick or raising the dead – He was filled with the Holy Spirit. It happened in the Jordon River after He was baptized by John the Baptist in order to be identified with sinners. Even though He was the Son of God, He was now the Son of Man and would need the help of the Spirit in facing evil.
Our Lord Jesus Christ remains our ultimate Model and Master of prayer. May the Holy Spirit raise up millions more Christians in America who hunger and thirst for the fullness of the Holy Spirit to pray against the Satanic forces that are seeking to destroy our nation. I am convinced that, given America’s present-day hostile worldview against God and righteousness, we must see multitudes of Spirit-filled prayer warriors joining the ranks of intercessors to wrestle against principalities and powers in these last-days invasions of evil. There is no doubt that in most believers minds the Christian worldview is losing influence constantly. We see it in college students, as multitudes abandon the Christian faith. We read it in the writings of some theologians as they attack the authenticity and inerrancy of the Holy Bible. And we hear it in fake news and read it in our extremely liberal newspapers.
So, Christians, let’s remember our legacy of prayer. Let’s pray for a rekindling of the fires of the Spirit and allow Him to help us pray in faith for the greatest revival that America has ever known. Let’s hear and heed the call to sacrificial praying. Remember, our nation is now reaching that kind of darkness in which many people are calling evil good and good evil. It grieves my heart to realize that this United States of America that was founded on faith in God and whose founding fathers dedicated us to God’s glory and service has now fallen so far that we are facing God’s righteous judgments. I’m reminded of how the prophet Isaiah once warned a generation of backsliding Israelites that unless Jehovah raised up a praying remnant, they would wind up as Sodom and Gomorrah!
Brothers and sisters, it’s going to be revival or implosion. So, may God burn into our hearts the passion and persistence to go for revival!
Prayer: Heavenly Father, raise up many Spirit-anointed wrestlers in every community throughout America to boldly defeat the forces of darkness determined to hinder the great awakening that You long to give Your church and the world! May Your glory prevail, and let us experience the great rending of the heavens at this late hour! In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Prayer Partners, please keep our schedule as a reference in praying for our ministries.
Rev. Jim and Shirley Tharp’s Spring and Summer Schedule
Saturday Morning Prayer Group: From 10 am to 12 noon, Pastor Tharp leads a prayer meeting, interceding for revival and a great spiritual awakening. We are meeting upstairs at 724 Glider Lane, Belgrade, MT. If you are in the area, you are welcome to join with us for intercessory prayer.
Sunday Mornings from 9:00-9:30 Mountain Time: Every Sunday, Pastor Tharp broadcasts a sermon over 99.1 FM on his program, A Call to Prayer, which is heard in several counties of Montana. At a future date we plan to include these broadcasts on our website so that everyone worldwide can listen to them.
Tharp-Best Family Reunion, August 9-11, 2018: Pastor Jim and Shirley Tharp plan to attend the reunion in Frankfort, IN.
Updated Website: The enhanced Christian Renewal website, www.crmin.org, is open and ready for viewing. In addition to the radio broadcasts, we also plan to add all past CRM Journals and online giving. We want to express our appreciation to Daniel Hartzheim for his expertise in giving our website a much-needed facelift.
Resources for Spiritual Leaders and Prayer Warriors Jim Tharp’s Books
Books by Other Authors (contact us to purchase):
Marilee Donivan . . . . . Overcoming Negative Emotions . . . $12
Wesley Duewel . . . . . . Mighty Prevailing Prayer . . . . . . . . . $14
Wesley Duewel . . . . . . More God, More Power . . . . . . . . . . $11
Wesley Duewel . . . . . . Revival Fire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $14
Rick Joyner . . . . . . . . . .The World Aflame (Welsh Revival) . . $8
Francis Frangipane . . . Holiness, Truth and the Presence of God . . . $8
Francis Frangipane . . . The Days of His Presence . . . . . . . . . .$8
Francis Frangipane . . . The Three Battlegrounds . . . . . . . . . .$8
Wayne Patton . . . . . . . The Divine Visitor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$7