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Romans 15__22-33 Gods Way

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Romans 15: 22-33

My Way is No Way…God’s Way is THE WAY

READ YOUR BIBLE?

Secular:

  •   Miracle Foodmart… clean-up
  •  Ice  Cream Pallet…
  •  Floor cleaning 5hrs  instead of 7.5hrs
    • Their plan – Sweep, Machine, Wax weekly…strip monthly
    • My Plan – Sweep, Machine, Rinse, Wax daily… strip bi-weekly
    • Inspections went well… (Ontario winter… slushy…messy)
    • Unfortunately it wasn’t for me to reinterpret things in light of the results… (one inspection didn’t goes as well)
    • Didn’t know my place…

Biblical:

Romans 15:22 For this reason I have often been prevented from coming to you; 23 but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you 24 whenever I go to Spain-- for I hope to see you in passing, and to be helped on my way there by you, when I have first enjoyed your company for a while-- 25 but now, I am going to Jerusalem serving the saints. 26 For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. 27 Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things. 28 Therefore, when I have finished this, and have put my seal on this fruit of theirs, I will go on by way of you to Spain. 29 I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ. 30 Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me, 31 that I may be rescued from those who are disobedient in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may prove acceptable to the saints; 32 so that I may come to you in joy by the will of God and find refreshing rest in your company. 33 Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

Personal:

  • Divorce… remarriage… premarital sex…
    • God told me too…
    • Nope…
  • I’ll pray about it…
    • Waiting for…? For what…?
    • Is it about… time before God… in his Word…seeking counsel… or are we putting of obedience? 

Bridge:

  • Central Idea… Be faithful to God’s call on our life
    • Romans 15:16 to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles, ministering as a priest the gospel of God, so that my offering of the Gentiles may become acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
  •  Right attitude as demonstrated in Christ… John 5:30 "I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.
  •  God’s purpose… not Jesus, not Paul, not me, not you…
  •  Acts 20:22 "And now, behold, bound in spirit, I am on my way to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit solemnly testifies to me in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions await me. 24 "But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God.
  •  Bound in Spirit… God’s purpose
  • Not about our plan…
  • Not about our ease
  • About something true
  • Right attitude…
  • It is about Finishing the Course
  • Colossians 1:24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking in Christ's afflictions. 25 Of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God… 29 For this purpose also I labour, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.
  • Whole life… body, mind, and soul…
  • Our heart, our time, our habits, our abilities, our spiritual gifts… all committed to the calling of Christ in our life!
  • Regardless of Cost… Faithful to Purpose
  • The 5 Characteristics in faithfully caring out our ministry are Providence… Planning… Priority… Privilege… Prayer

Body:

Providence

Romans 15:22 For this reason I have often been prevented from coming to you;

  • The first characteristic in faithfully caring out our ministry is to see the Sovereign work of God around us… to recognize Providence.
  • Providence is God’s Sovereign will exercised…
    • In things like the gifts in creation… water, wind, sunlight, trees that grow and bear fruit, animals for meat and fine leather ware… even in the laws of nature themselves
    • It is also exercised in the miraculous… parting of the Red Sea and the Jordan river… in earthquakes… in skies darkening…
    • In attempting to understand providence we often wander into a strange ritual of seeking God’s Sovereign will…  something not promised to us.
    • Haven’t you heard
      • Perfect will for your life… like a thread?
      • Or a series of doors…?
      • Fleeces…?
      • Not ours to know…
    • Matthew 25:13 "Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour.
    • Mark 13:32 "But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.
    • So what good is God’s providential (sovereign) will… It reminds God is the LORD GORD ALMIGHTY… creator and sustainer of the universe… who has dominion over his created world and all that is with in it.
    • We can see clearly God’s sovereign will in the rear view mirror…
    • The Israelites were told to head for the Land promised them… (through Moses… Promises to Abraham)
    • They didn’t know until it was time that seas and rivers would part before them.
    • They knew (weren’t always obedient) … but the knew God’s plan revealed to them… and were to be obedient to the revelation of God.
  • Paul knew that he was called to minister the Gospel in Christ name… despite the “challenges” which might have been read as a Providential “NO” he persevered because the revealed will of God was clear and was his guide!
  •  So he continued to attempt to spread the gospel… according to his passion for the Word… and God’s Providence ultimately exercised dominion over all that happened!
    • 2 Corinthians 11:23 Are they servants of Christ?-- I speak as if insane-- I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. 24 Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. 26 I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; 27 I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. 28 Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure on me of concern for all the churches. 29 Who is weak without my being weak? Who is led into sin without my intense concern? 30 If I have to boast, I will boast of what pertains to my weakness. 31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, He who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. 32 In Damascus the ethnarch under Aretas the king was guarding the city of the Damascenes in order to seize me, 33 and I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and so escaped his hands.
  • So as Paul headed toward Rome… God prevented him…. Cut Into… a Trench… A Barrier
  • God’s divine intent can not be thwarted…
  • Paul desired to go to Rome…
  • God planned other things…
  • Acts 16:7 and after they came to Mysia, they were trying to go into Bithynia, and the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them;
  •  Story of Joseph…
    • Not about a brat and some band of bad brothers
    • It is about God’s providence
      • Pit, Slavery, Potiphar, Wife, Pharaoh, Famine, Providence…
      • Genesis 50:20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.
  •  Even the misbehaving… will be used by God!
  • Our OBLIGATION is to his revealed will!
  • Jeremiah 10:23 I know, O LORD, that a man's way is not in himself, Nor is it in a man who walks to direct his steps.  
  •  It is arrogance when we think it is about us!
  • US who save… US who plan… US who redeem
  • James 4:13 Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit." 14 Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapour that appears for a little while and then vanishes away…
  • Perspective…
  •  Proverbs 16:9 The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.
  •  God directs our macro-lives… We are responsible to his Revealed Will!
  •  Proverbs 19:21 Many plans are in a man's heart, But the counsel of the LORD will stand.
  • God is in the details… Providence…
  •  We need to Obey his revealed will…
  • Trust in his providential will…
  • God gives us incredible opportunities…
    • We are looking for divine magic
    • God is looking for obedience

Implications….

  • Made for a purpose
  • Can obey or not…. (hammer with a screwdriver)
  • Can’t thwart God!
  • But Paul kept serving, obeying, studying, trusting…
  • We need to keep serving, obeying, studying, trusting…


Romans 15: 22-33

My Way is No Way…God’s Way is THE WAY Part II

READ YOUR BIBLE?- PRAYER TIME?

Secular:

  •  Questions… when we meet someone?
  •  What do you do?
    • Politics
    • Church
    • Hobbies
    • School
  • Who are you? Changes you view of life!
  • What defines you?
  • If you asked the Apostle Paul…
    • Who are you?
    • What would he answer?
  • Interesting the things that define us….

Biblical:

Romans 15:22 For this reason I have often been prevented from coming to you; 23 but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you 24 whenever I go to Spain-- for I hope to see you in passing, and to be helped on my way there by you, when I have first enjoyed your company for a while-- 25 but now, I am going to Jerusalem serving the saints. 26 For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. 27 Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things. 28 Therefore, when I have finished this, and have put my seal on this fruit of theirs, I will go on by way of you to Spain. 29 I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ. 30 Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me, 31 that I may be rescued from those who are disobedient in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may prove acceptable to the saints; 32 so that I may come to you in joy by the will of God and find refreshing rest in your company. 33 Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

Personal:

  •  Kid spend the first 12 years developing who they are…. As babies in relation to Mom and Dad
  • As toddlers what to do with this independence
  • The they become teens and try to figure out  their relation to Mom and Dad… what to do with their burgeoning sense of independence
  • Then we start to date, court… who are we around our special someone
  •  Then we have to manage adult life… all the responsibilities
  • For many it is then marriage… what to do, who am I, who are you…
  •  Then as parents… what to do with this very dependent child, adventurous toddlers…
  •  Men go through mid-life… who am I
  • Women go through menopause…
  • All trying to figure out who we are…
  •  We need to go back to basics
    • Who is God
    • Who  am I in relationship to God
    • Who am I as a child of God
  •  To those who have received new birth in Christ we are a new creation in Christ…
  • And we live to glorify God!
  •  Paul demonstrates dead to self , alive in God and alive to God’s purpose in his Life…
  • Paul could cry out… THIS IS WHAT I WAS MADE FOR!!

Bridge:

  • The 5 Characteristics in faithfully caring out our ministry are Providence… Planning… Priority… Privilege… Prayer
  • Last week we started with Providence…
    • Remember that Providence isn’t the path we seek… looking for the tightrope… the windows and doors…
    • Providence is our confidence that all things work according to the Sovereign Plan of God… to his Glory! And we can marvel in it… testify to it… we just can’t reliably discern it before it happens… that is not our responsibility
    • What we are responsible to is his revealed will…
  • So if the 5 Characteristics of faithfully caring out our ministry are Providence… Planning… Priority… Prosperity… Prayer
  • This is what we are made for!
  • They fit together because we can trust in the Providence of God to bring about his Sovereign Will… Divine Plan

And…  we can undertake to Plan according to his Word…

Body:

Planning

23 but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you 24 whenever I go to Spain-- for I hope to see you in passing, and to be helped on my way there by you, when I have first enjoyed your company for a while—

  • Was wise… been there… done that… (no further place to go)
  • Not mere fate…. Nor determinism…
  • We do have responsibility!
  • Paul planned… We must plan…
  • Luke 14:28 "For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? 29 "Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him, 30 saying, 'This man began to build and was not able to finish.' 31 "Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and consider whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to encounter the one coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 "Or else, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. 33 "So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions. (Main point cost of discipleship… but valid planning principle!)
  • Completely subject to God’s expressed will (the Word) and God’s Sovereign Will
  •  Remember Paul had a plan… Romans 15:20 And thus I aspired to preach the gospel, not where Christ was already named….
  •  He planned to carry out God’s call on his life… not negotiable… not even based on perceived success!
  • Was it about results?
  • He knew it was the right thing to do!
  • (Response to Gospel) Ever heard never mind… that won’t work…. He won’t listen… she won’t understand… they are not interested…
  • Romans 1:10 always in my prayers making request, if perhaps now at last by the will of God I may succeed in coming to you. 11 For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be established; 12 that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other's faith, both yours and mine. 13 I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that often I have planned to come to you (and have been prevented so far) so that I may obtain some fruit among you also, even as among the rest of the Gentiles.
  • Come, Impart, Encourage… all subject to God’s Will… but plan on it!
  • Remember providence does not preclude planning.
  • “No” for the moment doesn’t mean stop… success is in obedience not in our results…. Faithful to the Word.
  • There is Testimony in effort, commitment… obedience.
  •  1 Thessalonians 2:17 But we, brethren, having been taken away from you for a short while-- in person, not in spirit-- were all the more eager with great desire to see your face. 18 For we wanted to come to you-- I, Paul, more than once-- and yet Satan hindered us. …Paul tried… Paul Thwarted… Not God thwarted… Satan allowed to thwart Paul
  •  No matter how unselfish… how admirable or noble the intent… All Subject to God!
  • Planning

 

Priority

  • 25 but now, I am going to Jerusalem serving the saints. 26 For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. 27 Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things. 28 Therefore, when I have finished this, and have put my seal on this fruit of theirs, I will go on by way of you to Spain.
  • Future ministry… not at the sacrifice of the Present
  • Strong church makes future plans more viable…
  • Rome was a worthy target!... but existing ministry needed help!
  • Pressure @ home… poverty / persecution (58 ad)
    • 1 Corinthians 16:1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I directed the churches of Galatia, so do you also.
    • Urgent care… Principal… the church, the bride, must take care of herself!
    • 2 Corinthians 8:2 that in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality. 3 For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability, they gave of their own accord, 4 begging us with much urging for the favour of participation in the support of the saints,
  •  have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem
  •  Contribution… it the word koinonia… in common… Financial in common…
  •  Powerful gesture of love
  • From historic positions of animosity
    • (Like the US / Soviets)
    • (Like black and white)
    • BIG and OBVIOUS… well received
  • Need to have right view of God…
  • AND of his Bride…
    • Not ours the church… but entrusted to us
    • Not our resources… but entrusted to us
    • Not our lives… but that which was entrusted to us!!
    • Strong church, God’s Desire, Our Priority!
      • Matthew 16:18 "I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.
    • V. 27 Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things.
    •  Care for brethren… those who brought faith
          • … care for each other
          • Faith institution!
          • Those who minister in Christ’s name… the redeemed
    • 2 Corinthians 9:7 Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
    • What is the purpose of the believer? What is our priority… God’s Priority… to bring Glory to his name… that includes the health of the Church!
    • God’s priority is His Glory… demonstrated in Creation, and in redemption…
    • His priority is ours…
    • How do we bless if the body is unhealthy?
  • Loving gift… taken care of…
  • Priority met… as part of His plan…
  • Stay on track… revealed will… God’s Priority our Priority!

Prosperity

29 I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ.

  • Living in obedience
  • Living BOLD for Jesus
  • Living in and through the Spirit
  • He can state… I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ.
  • Fullness of blessing is living for Christ’s purpose…
  • It is not material… not the world’s standard
  • Blessing comes from our Relationship with God
  • It is how we have martyrs… fully sold out
  • Best gift isn’t the pottery made at the hands of your child… the picture on the fridge… the best gift is in the relationship!
  • The best blessing comes as we live in obedience to God!.... in closest relationship… (come on how close to we feel to a rebelling child… hurt, yes… love, yes… close,?)
  • Prosperity is material… and it isn’t easy!
  •  2 Corinthians 11:23 Are they servants of Christ?-- I speak as if insane-- I more so; in far more labours, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. 24 Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. 26 I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; 27 I have been in labour and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.
  •  Not about material prosperity
  • About the fullness of person
  • What we are created for…     Right view of God

Right view of US

  •  Philippians 1:12 Now I want you to know, brethren, that my circumstances have turned out for the greater progress of the gospel, 13 so that my imprisonment in the cause of Christ has become well known throughout the whole praetorian guard and to everyone else, 14 and that most of the brethren, trusting in the Lord because of my imprisonment, have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear… 18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice,
  •  Greater progress of the gospel
    • Prosperity
  • Courage to speak
    • Prosperity
  • Christ is proclaimed
    • Prosperity
    • Life in Christ
    • True Prosperity
  • THIS IS WHAT IS WAS MADE FOR!
  • Prosperity according to the word… life in the fullness of Christ!!  John 10:10b "… I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.
  • THIS IS TRUE PROSPERITY!

Conclusion:

Planning

  •  No matter how selfless or noble…
    • It has to be according to God’s revealed will!
    • Faithful to Word… not to results
    • THIS is what we are made for!

Priority

  •  Present ministry
  • Strong Body
  • Koinonia
  • Common Ministry
  • THIS is what we are made for!

Prosperity

  • Greater progress of the gospel
    • Prosperity
  • Courage to speak
    • Prosperity
  • Christ is proclaimed
    • Prosperity
    • Life in Christ
    • True Prosperity


Romans 15: 22-33

My Way is No Way…God’s Way is THE WAY III

READ YOUR BIBLE?

Secular:

  •  When I was about 14 we moved to Toronto from a small town about 1 ½ hours North East… Lindsay
  •  I moved into one tough neighbourhood…
  • Nice apartments beside… A Government housing project…
  • I was quiet… got along with most everyone… everyone except Hopeton
  • I had no idea why? He was a bit of a loner… on the edge of things… always
  •  We came face to face on the field behind the school one day… and he became very threatening…
  • So I engaged…
  • I remember what my dad had said… if you are going to loose get it at least one good shot… “preventive”
  •  I grossly underestimated the power of my opponent!
  • We too often underestimate the power of prayer!

Biblical:

Romans 15:22 For this reason I have often been prevented from coming to you; 23 but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you 24 whenever I go to Spain-- for I hope to see you in passing, and to be helped on my way there by you, when I have first enjoyed your company for a while-- 25 but now, I am going to Jerusalem serving the saints. 26 For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. 27 Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things. 28 Therefore, when I have finished this, and have put my seal on this fruit of theirs, I will go on by way of you to Spain. 29 I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ. 30 Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me, 31 that I may be rescued from those who are disobedient in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may prove acceptable to the saints; 32 so that I may come to you in joy by the will of God and find refreshing rest in your company. 33 Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

Personal:

  • How many times do we use the wrong tool for a job?
  • Vice-grips… adjustable monkey wrench… and we proceed to round off every nut you get near with those things…
  • They sell hundreds and hundreds of the wrong tool for the wrong job every month…
  •  And yet where ever there is an impatient man… there is an opportunity to do things the wrong way….
  •  We miss the opportunity to engage the right tool in ministry…
  • Paul explicitly asks for prayer… why?
  • Because prayer is the right tool for the job… the most powerful, most appropriate tool… (according to the manual

Bridge:

  • The 5 Characteristics in faithfully caring out our ministry are Providence… Planning… Priority… Privilege… Prayer
  •  Paul’s ideal laid before us…
    • Recognize God’s providence for what it is
    • Plan according to his expressed will
    • Priority is to present ministry bring Glory to God
    • Prosperity… richness of the shared gospel
  •  Right relationship with God keeps us on our knees before him… For we should be sharing a common heart… passion… love.
    • Common interests…
    • Compatibility…
    • PRAYER
  • The 5 Characteristics in faithfully caring out our ministry are Providence… Planning… Priority… Privilege… Prayer

Body:

Prayer

30 Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me, 31 that I may be rescued from those who are disobedient in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may prove acceptable to the saints; 32 so that I may come to you in joy by the will of God and find refreshing rest in your company. 33 Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

  • Sake of the gospel… Prayer is a priority
  • 1 Corinthians 9:23 I do all things for the sake of the gospel, so that I may become a fellow partaker of it.
  • Paul would desire 1st to do will of God
    • Prayer is not to take us out of God’s Plan
    • He wants to be full partaker of God’s plan
    • No missing the mark!
  •  Philippians 3:8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,
  • Prayer isn’t selfish
  • Prayer recognizes God
  • Prayer recognizes Others
  • Prayer recognizes self
  • What I gain for me is rubbish… it was all about ministry
  • All he did recognized that…. And he lived by it
    • By Christ…
    • In the Love of the Spirit
  •   Galatians 6:17 From now on let no one cause trouble for me, for I bear on my body the brand-marks of Jesus.
  •  I have paid my dues… either bring Scripture to bear or stop. Show me the sacrifice of you have made… Jesus is my life! This guy is asking for prayer!
  •  All I do!
  •  By Christ… for Christ
  •  Context Love for the Spirit…
    • Psalm 143:10 Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.
    • Help me fulfill my ministry!
  •  Agonize together… strive spiritually… not some human exertion… to strive is to agonize…
  •  Gymnastics… Wrestlers…. Boxers…. Agonize against one another
  •  Jesus told Pilate… John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm."
    • Agonizomai (A-Gone-O-Zem-I)
    • Passion for ministry… God... Souls
  •  Praying in earnest… there is a battle this is the weapon
    • End of the phrase “Just Pray”
  • Romans 7:23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
  •  To agonize together….
    • Value of Gospel
    • Value nature of God
    • Level of Commitment
    • VALUE OF PRAYER (related)
  • Wrestle with me… Colossians 2:1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on your behalf and for those who are at Laodicea, and for all those who have not personally seen my face, 2 that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God's mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument.
  • Know my passion… do not be dissuaded
  •  PRAY… agonize with me
    • This isn’t without context
    • Been there done that
    • Pray…Agonize with me
  • Colossians 4:12 Epaphras, who is one of your number, a bondslave of Jesus Christ, sends you his greetings, always labouring earnestly for you in his prayers, that you may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God. Important…
        • No Prayer
        • No Church
        • No Protection
  •  Prayer is a real weapon… Real protection
    • that you may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God.
    • Prayer is essential
    • Apostle doesn’t waste time
    • Urgency…. Passion… gospel
  • If you believe you pray
  • If you labourer together you pray
  • If you know you pray
  • James 5:16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.
  • Value to prayer is ascribed by Scripture….
  • Told it is powerful… accomplishes… God purposes us…
  • (Hey do you believer Scripture… did you read the part about confessing sins to one another…?)
  • NAU Luke 11:10 "For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened.
  • Prayer of the faithful… is powerful
    • Prayer is not selfish
    • Or it is not prayer…
    • It seeks God’s will or it is not from his child
  • Consistent with Scripture
  • Consistent with God
  • Remember prayer is about knowing God and putting him 1st  
  • NAU Ephesians 6:18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints, 19 and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,
  • Pray… Pray… Pray…
  •  Pray for my behalf
    • For ministry
    • For God’s Purpose
    • For God’s Glory
  •  
  • NAU Colossians 4:2 Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving; 3 praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned;
  • Praying God’ heart
  • NAU 2 Thessalonians 3:1 Finally, brethren, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it did also with you;
  • Praying God’s heart
  • NAU Romans 1:9 For God, whom I serve in my spirit in the preaching of the gospel of His Son, is my witness as to how unceasingly I make mention of you, 10 always in my prayers making request, if perhaps now at last by the will of God I may succeed in coming to you.
  • Praying God’s heart
  •  Prayer for Safety
  • Paul post conversion…NAU Acts 9:20 and immediately he began to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues, saying, "He is the Son of God."… he was a hunted man… Acts 9:23 When many days had elapsed, the Jews plotted together to do away with him,
  • A hunted man… ask for prayer… not an army!
  • NAU Romans 15:23 but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you
  • Plan to carry out…
  • NAU Acts 21:10 As we were staying there for some days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. 11 And coming to us, he took Paul's belt and bound his own feet and hands, and said, "This is what the Holy Spirit says: 'In this way the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.'"
  • So PRAY! God’s will and Safety…
  • Not to be relieved of his duty…
  • But God’s protection of him while serving God.
  • NAU Acts 23:11 But on the night immediately following, the Lord stood at his side and said, "Take courage; for as you have solemnly witnessed to My cause at Jerusalem, so you must witness at Rome also."
  • There is a promise by Jesus
  • Still a prayer item… wasn’t easy…. (remember)
    • Prayer encourages and supports and shows love!
  • NAU Acts 20:22 "And now, behold, bound in spirit, I am on my way to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit solemnly testifies to me in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions await me. 24 "But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God.
  • Paul’s desire is God and Gospel
  • Pray...agonize with him
  • Agonizing for the Gospel
    • And pray for Safety  
  • Prayer for Success
  •  Join the mission
    • Not about we can do…
    • What we can do it in Christ!
    • It includes, is underpinned, empowered by prayer
  • Galatians 1:8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! … 10 For am I now seeking the favour of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.
  • Praying helps us stay true to our mission… (saying it… asking for the desire of heart in line with God)
  •  Glory to God… Furthering the Gospel
  • His desire is our desire!
  •  God wants our participation
    • (NOT NEEDED… but that’s his heart)
  •  Achieve God’s Purpose… Glory to God
  •  
  • Acts 21:17 After we arrived in Jerusalem, the brethren received us gladly….19 After he had greeted them, he began to relate one by one the things which God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20 And when they heard it they began glorifying God; and they said to him, "You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law;
  •  It is about glory…
  • About Success
  • Prayer for Satisfaction
  •   Not that the hunger will go away
    • But there is satisfaction
  • See fruit… getting personal… again for God’s glory
  •  1 Corinthians 16:17 I rejoice over the coming of Stephanas and Fortunatus and Achaicus, because they have supplied what was lacking on your part. 18 For they have refreshed my spirit and yours. Therefore acknowledge such men.
  •  Refreshing of Spirit
    • Prayer and Mission
  • Not only success but refreshing
  •  2 Corinthians 7:13 For this reason we have been comforted. And besides our comfort, we rejoiced even much more for the joy of Titus, because his spirit has been refreshed by you all.
  • Pray that many would see Christ and refresh the souls
  • Satisfaction is being -- committed to the will of God
  • Satisfaction in the Spirit
  • Romans 8:27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
  •  Satisfaction in Offering Self
  • (we contend against the flesh in this… we need prayer)
  • Romans 12:1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
  •  Prayer for  Satisfaction
  • Prayer of Benediction
  • Genuine Heart
  • God’s Love
  • Again not selfish
  • NAU Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
  • He wants them to be strong
  • Anchored in God
  •  (A Benediction is a blessing and a reminder)
  • Ephesians 2:14 For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall,
  • Unified in Christ
  • Human level… No Peace
  • On the Spirit Level… Know Peace and Tranquility
  • (A Benediction is a blessing and a reminder)

Conclusion:

Providence…

Implications….

  • Made for a purpose
  • Can obey or not…. (hammer with a screwdriver)
  • Can’t thwart God!
  • But Paul kept serving, obeying, studying, trusting…
  • We need to keep serving, obeying, studying, trusting…

Planning

  •  No matter how selfless or noble…
    • It has to be according to God’s revealed will!
    • Faithful to Word… not to results
    • THIS is what we are made for!

Priority

  •  Present ministry
  • Strong Body
  • Koinonia
  • Common Ministry
  • THIS is what we are made for!

Prosperity

  • Greater progress of the gospel
    • Prosperity
  • Courage to speak
    • Prosperity
  • Christ is proclaimed
    • Prosperity
    • Life in Christ
    • True Prosperity

Prayer

  •  Prayer is Powerful
    • Pray for Safety
    • Pray for Success
    • Pray for Satisfaction
    • Let your life be a benediction (A Blessing and a reminder)
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