The Call To Prayer

37086006 - hands of praying young man on a wooden desk background.

When it comes to prayer you will usually see more women joining the meeting than men. Although it was “The Man” Jesus who prayed and taught 12 MEN the necessity and methods of prayer. It was Abraham who prayed for Sodom Gomorrah, it was Moses who prayed for rebellious Israel, on and on men in the Bible prayed.

So what has happened to men today that makes them reluctant to take the lead in the ministry of prayer. Jesus tells us in the Garden of Gethsemane when He asked the disciples to pray with Him for one hour, “The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak” Matthew 26:41. Men must learn to let their spirit have mastery over their flesh, they must learn to have good performance not just good intentions. This is a matter of spiritual maturity as Paul tells us when he speaks to the Corinthians who were “fleshly or carnal.” Carnal people are dominated by the desires of the flesh, and the flesh never wants to pray, it wants to watch tv, play golf, go hunting and fishing, drink beer, have sex and so on. There is no getting around it, prayer left up to the women in the Church is clue to the carnality of the men. The men in the New Testament didn’t neglect prayer and that’s why they had such a powerful move of God to change the world. The leadership were faithful to pray (Acts 6:1-4), the men prayed (Acts 1:14), and the whole church prayed together (Acts 4:23-31). The great leaders of Awakening and Revival were men of prayer, Martin Luther, George Whitfield, Jonathan Edwards, John and Charles Wesley, and so on. They had revival because they were dependent on God, evidenced by the realization that God would respond to their devoted prayer life.

A young boy will follow his father’s example; if Dad prays, the boy will pray. Many men in the world today view Christianity as a women’s religion because they don’t see MEN taking the lead in spiritual things, like prayer and fasting. It is the women who know that things won’t work if someone doesn’t pray, so they pray. The most manly thing you can do is PRAY.

“These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers” Acts 1:14.

MEN, YOU ARE BEING CALLED TO PRAY, not PLAY!

We see Muslim men answering the call to pray by the millions and they are giving the Western world a rough time right now, they are praying for Shariah Law to rule the world. Where are the Christian men praying for “thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven?” If Islam wins the battle, here is the reason why…they are devoted to the cause as evidenced by their call to prayer.

I am pleading for Christian men to get out of the flesh and into the Spirit of God, become men of prayer. This is the only hope for victory.

Dr. John Polis

Faith Grows in Levels

31545001_sRecently I was meditating on my favorite subject – Faith.  You say, “Why Faith, Dr. John?”  Here are two good reasons:  because Apostle Paul said, “The just shall LIVE by FAITH” (Romans 1:17), and Jesus said, “According to your FAITH so be it unto you.” (Matthew 9:29).

THE COIN OF THE KINGDOM

Faith is the “coin of the Kingdom” – you will never receive from God beyond your level of faith, except for those times when God just initiates blessings for us as new believers who haven’t had time to learn and grow.  The problem occurs when Christians have been believers for a long time, but have not made the effort to grow in faith; then when it doesn’t seem that God is doing all the neat things He was doing for us as “newbies” we get discouraged and become “Christian drop-outs” or “sad-sacks” who live in doubt and unbelief all the time.

ACCELERATED GROWTH

God expects us to “go to school” (2 Timothy 2:15) in spiritual matters so we can become “faith scholars.”  The Bible is the source of faith, as Paul said in Romans 10:17:  “So then, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”  As we read, meditate, speak, and act on God’s Word, our faith grows continually to expect more and more of God’s promises to be fulfilled in our lives.  Attending worship service and Bible studies where apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers who are gifted in the Word of God are operating, your faith will grow at an accelerated rate.  I believe God has placed these gifts in the Church for us (Ephesians 4:11) to operate as “jet fuel” for our spiritual lives.  We will grow through our own devotions, and with the added “jet fuel” of anointed teaching and preaching, our faith will grow that much faster (Colossians 1:28-29).

IT IS DONE!

Our faith grows in levels that start with believing God CAN do anything, to believing God WILL do anything, to the highest level of faith that says God has DONE it.  This is like the three stages of growth we all experience, from babyhood to childhood and finally to adulthood.  Baby faith says, “I know God can”, childhood faith says, “I know God will.”  But mature, adult faith says, with boldness, “I know God has done it!”  This is where we “walk by faith and not by sight” until the power of God performs what our faith has determined according to the Word of God.  Adult faith will say, “By His stripes, I was healed” and go on rejoicing even though the symptoms are still there.  Adult faith will say, “I have abundance” when it looks like we can’t pay the bills.  Why?  Because we believe “it is done” already.  Faith “calls those things which be not as thought they (already) were.” (Romans 4:17-20).  Get in the Word and grow!!

FAITH WILL PREVAIL

12994082_sWhile reading about the healing of Jairus’ daughter in each of the three gospels where it is recorded, I found some faith-building facts to share:

GOD RESPONDS TO FAITH

Jairus said to Jesus, “My daughter is at the point of death, but come and lay your hands upon her and she will live.”  The Lord recognized the faith of Jairus by the words that he spoke: “she shall live.”  Immediately, Jesus responded and followed him home, along with his disciples who were in training and coming to observe Jesus at work.  Faith always speaks the “outcome” – it makes a declaration of what will be as a result of God’s power in action.  When Jesus heard the man say what he believed, He knew the man had faith to receive this miracle.

GOD ENCOURAGES FAITH

Sometimes delays can occur after we have released our faith by speaking the outcome, as Jairus did.  In this story, Jesus was interrupted on his way to raise the dead girl by a woman with an issue of blood.  Delays in answers can be a time when fear can come in to derail our faith and stop the miracle that is in progress.  People came from the house of Jairus and said, “Don’t trouble the Master, you daughter is dead.”  When Jesus heard the bad report, He turned to Jairus immediately and said, “Fear not, only believe.”  When we are standing in faith for a miracle or healing of some kind, and fear is trying to crowd out the faith we had started with, God will speak a word of encouragement that will help us continue to believe.  In fact, the Greek tense in this phrase implies, “keep on believing.”

GOD REWARDS FAITH

Jairus must have taken the encouragement from Jesus and continued to believe, because the procession continued and his daughter was raised to life when Jesus gave the faith command saying, “Little girl, arise.”  And her spirit returned and she arose and ate something.  God is a rewarder of faith according to Hebrews 11:6, which says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God. For he that comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarded of those who diligently seek Him.”  When we start in faith, continue in faith, and finish in faith, then faith will be rewarded with the thing that was believed for at the beginning.  Be encouraged, and stay in faith until the answer is manifested!

Believe for the Supernatural

20557800_sRecently while praying to God for more of His “healing grace” to be manifested in our lives, the verse in Mark 15:17-18 took on new meaning for me.  It says, “And these signs will follow those who believe.  In my name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will be no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”   

Generally speaking, we don’t see many of these signs following believers in today’s church, and I asked myself, “Why not?”  What I heard was an additional insight into this verse that answered my query.  When this verse speaks of signs following believers, it means that the signs follow them that “believe for these signs.”  I realized the problem: not all believers are believing for these manifestations of the Spirit to attend their ordinary everyday lives.  Believing implies “praying for something,” as Jesus said: “And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive”(Matthew 21:22)In addition, we don’t often pray and believe for things we don’t desire: “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4)So what is the bottom line here?

My sense is that as believers, we must desire these supernatural manifestations to be an active part of our lives, and earnestly pray for them – they will not happen automatically just because we have become a “believer” in Christ.  As born-again believers, we must see that it is God’s will that our lives be above the natural, that is “supernatural,” so that we can have the manifestations of God’s awesome power at work on a regular basis as we “ask, seek and knock” for these “doors of the Spirit” to be open to us.  In order for Jesus to have these “signs following” Him, He had to spend much time in prayer with fasting.  He also told the disciples (Matthew 17:21) that they would need to express the same spiritual hunger through fasting and prayer in order to see the same results that they witnessed in the life of Jesus.

It is often the case that believers live far below their potential when it comes to manifesting the supernatural power of God.  The good news is that we can access that power at any time that we seek for it by getting “away from the table” and “into the prayer closet.”  Holy Spirit is alive in our lives, but will not be active in our lives until we earnestly desire to see Him work through us to bring healing and deliverance to others.  The Word says, “Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy” (1 Corinthians 14:1)We are the vessels through which God wants to display His mighty power on Earth, those who are washed in the Blood, filled with the Spirit and enlivened by the Word of God.  You are that person!

The Daily Double

Life can be more than a “chance” experience, it can be a “confidence” experience.  Many people play the Daily Double, hoping for a “chance” to change their life by getting that elusive “right number.”  It is an experiment in “emotional ups and downs” for all but a “lucky few” who eventually do win.  God has a plan for us that involves a “sure thing” without all the “roller coaster” emotions that go with living by “luck.”

I discovered God’s Daily Double in 1 Corinthians 14:14 recently and was very excited to share it with you because of the success it has brought to me, and all those who “use these numbers.”

“Well then, what shall I do?  I will pray in the spirit, and I will pray in words I understand.  I will sing in the spirit, and I will also sing in words I understand.”

Paul was a “master pray-er.”  He taught us all so much about prayer in his writings.  It is obvious that this man who was instrumental in bringing change to his world knew the importance of understanding and using the power of prayer.  In this passage, Paul tells us that there are two primary ways to pray:  “with our understanding” and “with our spirit.”  Another way to say it would be “with our mind” and “with our spirit.”  With our minds we can learn all the different forms of prayer that the Bible teaches, such as The Prayer of Faith, The Prayer of Committal, The Prayer of Petition, and others.  These forms of prayer all come with the promise of guaranteed results; no need for “gambling” here.

Then there is “prayer in the spirit,” which is a form of prayer that we use when we don’t “understand with our minds” what or how to pray for a situation.  Again, we are guaranteed that Holy Spirit will pray the perfect will of God through us and we will get the answer we need most (Romans 8:26-27).

I encourage you to use these forms of prayer daily, and make them your “Daily Double” for success in life.

Take It For Granted

Have you ever heard this phrase:  just “take it for granted.”  It usually refers to an acknowledgment of the “certainty” of something said or promised.  Applying this to using our “faith” for getting answers from God, when we pray, we should “take it for granted” that it is done.  I like the the Amplified Translation of Mark 11:24, which makes it very plain for us: “For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will get it.”

Knowing that God cannot lie, and that He has given us a “blank check” to fill in with our prayer request, after praying in faith, we should just “take it for granted” that our prayer has been answered, and go on our way praising God.  When you have prayed for healing, a financial need, or a place to live, just “take it for granted” that you have it, and you will get it.