Praying for What Cannot Fail
Unbiblical cynics say “If it is sure, why pray for it?” Biblical saints say, “Pray for it with joy, because it is sure.” For example, it is absolutely sure that God’s kingdom is going to come. “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign for ever and ever” (Revelation 11:15). Yet we are told to pray, “Thy kingdom come.”
Here’s another example: Jesus promised with absolute certainty, that “this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). In other words, the great commission will be completed. There is no doubt. Yet Jesus commanded us to make disciples of all nations and to “pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers” (Matthew 9:38).
What this means is that God appoints prayer as the means of finishing a mission that he has promised will be finished. Therefore we pray, not because the outcome is uncertain, but because it is certain. And our prayers are the means God has appointed to do what he most certainly will do—finish the great commission and establish his kingdom.
Those who pray for the kingdom to come will receive the kingdom. Those who don’t may show by their indifference that they do not love the king’s coming—and may be excluded (2 Timothy 4:8).
One way to pray for the greatest cause in the world is with other red-hot kingdom lovers at the Midwest Prayer Conference at Grace Church Edina October 29-31. David Bryant and others will be leading in plenary sessions and workshops on prayer from Friday evening through Saturday. Then there will be a great area-wide concert of prayer Sunday, October 31 at 6:00P.M., Halloween evening.
Any questions: call the Conference hot-line. We have registration brochures at the church.
The conference is not limited in its focus on world missions. Its theme is “Shattering the Night” taken from Isaiah 60:2, which says that a “deep darkness covers the peoples.” This is true of the thousands of peoples in the 10/40 window. And it is true of our American culture. And of our city. And of many churches.
What we need to pray is what Paul commanded us to pray in 2 Thessalonians 3:1, “Pray that the word of the Lord may run and be glorified.” It is the word that gives the “light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6). And so it is the word that “shatters the night.” And it is prayer that empowers the word to “run and be glorified” in this way.
Come to where the significance is on Halloween weekend, especially Halloween night! Make a tremendous difference in history and in the city and in the world.
Praying with you for what cannot fail!
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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By John Piper. ©2015 Desiring God Foundation. Website: desiringGod.org