Posts Tagged ‘how to pray’

Experiencing the Holy Spirit in Prayer

Many are awakening to the love of prayer, and are seeking to connect with God in a deeper way.  Seeking to experience the Holy Spirit is a biblical, tangible reality.

In John 5 Jesus is speaking to the Pharisees; He says, “You do not have His word abiding in you, because [Him] whom He sent, Him you do not believe”   The Father sent Jesus, but they don’t believe Him. Why? Because they don’t have His word abiding in them.

  • Verse 39 is when it began to really become clear. He says, “You study the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life, but these are those which testify of Me. You are unwilling to come to Me that you might have life (Jn. 5:38).
  • Often we as believers confuse the value of bible understanding we get. We confuse its value, thinking, “It’s complete; it’s enough to have this.”  Yes, it’s valuable to understand the passage, but it’s incomplete, but often you end up with leaders who have head knowledge, but they don’t interact in a fresh way with the Living Son of God, by the Spirit.
  • I read that verse once and I was shocked, I said, “That’s what I do.  I’m searching”—you can also use the word ‘studying’—“the Scriptures. I’m engaging my mind. I thought that through Bible study I would experience life. That was the same problem the Pharisees were having; but here’s the key phrase, in verse 40: “But you are not willing to come to Me that you might have life” (Jn. 5:40).

    What came to my thinking the first time I saw this, changed me forever, it is that you can do Bible study all day long, but if you don’t take the Word to Jesus with a hungry heart, you don’t experience life. It hit me like a arrow, that I wasn’t coming to Him in this way. “You’re not dialoguing with Me. You’re not interacting with Me in your searching of the Scriptures.”  The written word must take us to the Living Word, this is the way to the life and food of the Word..

    So from that point on, I began to try and have a running dialogue with Jesus as I read the Scriptures.  Each passage is a door to knock on and ask Jesus for the Eph 1:17 spirit of Revelation.  The bible never says to read it in a year, but it says over and over to meditate on it.  A verse can be made a prayer quite easy.

  • The implanted Word delivers our soul from bondage to filthiness. 21 Lay aside all filthiness…and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save (supernaturally deliver) your souls. (Jas 1:21)   7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you…ask…and it shall done. (Jn. 15:7)

  • There are three components necessary for the power of the Word to live in us. First, we use our choice to pursue God with a spirit of obedience, faith (confidence He answers) and loving devotion. Second, we feed our heart continually on the Word (implant it in our heart) through mediation. Third, we need the activity of the Spirit to turn meditation into living revelation (turn water into wine, Jn. 2) to save or deliver us from sinful desires.  We must fellowship with the Holy Spirit by talking to Him.   Summary of the three components: we must obey God, feed on the Word and talk to the Spirit.

  • The bible highlights two ways to focus our mind in seeking God: God on His Throne (Rev. 4) and God in our innerman.  The Spirit flows from our “innermost man,” its where the Holy Spirit lives in us if we are born again.  We know from Scripture that He dwells in our innermost man (John 7:38), but we only experience Him in the innerman.  The innerman contains our mind will and emotions (Eph 3:16) We turn the attention of our soul to the Spirit in our spirit to grow in the deep things of God.

1 Cor 2:14  But the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness to him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

  • Meditation must be made prayer to enter the heart.  Christianity is relationship with the Man Jesus, we are sanctified and transformed by beholding Him, via the Word and Spirit.  Paul reveals here, that Scripture verses aren’t too just be figured out by the mind, but require the Holy Spirit to impact the heart, we want living understanding.  It takes God to get God.

38 If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.  He that believes on me, the way the Scriptures say,  From his innermost being (belly, KJV) will flow rivers of living water.  (Jn. 7:38 NAS)

  • By believing the Scriptures with authentic faith, we will connect with God and experience the Holy Spirit.  This experience Jesus likens to drinking from rivers of living water.  I’m going to talk about some very powerful activities that have been highlighted as a focus in the prayer movement.   Its easy to slip from the discipline of pursuing God, we must resolve to go after loving Him with all of our heart.  Getting the Word alive in your heart takes time and focus, it must become your main priority, and you must resist activity and speech that hinders it.  If we will commit to agressively feed our heart on the Love of God, we will take spiritual ground and be anointed by the Spirit to love God in yet greater ways.  If we are not agressively taking new ground, we will lose the ground we have, in stagnation.
The Mind Mouth Heart Method
Reading Scriptures gets them in our mind, and we need to love God with all of our mind, but speaking them over ourselves and speaking them to God, gets them in our heart.  John 15:7 reveals that if His words abide in you, you will have greater authority in prayer and see more answers.
4 ways to go Deeper-

1) Pray-Read Scripture to God (thanking Him, asking for revelation or power to obey).

  • Jesus said “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.  But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.” (John 5:39-40)   Scriptures will impact us when we pray them directly, not just thinking about them or studying them.  We when meet with Jesus, the Scriptures are our anointed conversation material.  “We let the written word take us to the Living Word, Jesus.”
  • So depending on the verse, we can thank God for the truth in it, and then ask for revelation on the verse, or ask for power to obey them.  The Scriptures are living and active (Heb 4:2) and are so powerful to transform us and renew our mind as we pray them.  They rewrite the code of our inner man enabling us to abide in God/Christ to dwells within us (Eph 3;16-19).  We renew our mind (Col 3:10) and walk as a new creation.
  • So with a verse like 26 The Holy Spirit…will teach you all things… (Jn. 14:26) We would pray, Thank you Holy Spirit that you teach me, I ask for revelation on what it truly means for you to teach me, and help me to understand you leadings.  Or John 15:9 As the Father has loved Me, I love you.  We would pray, Jesus thank you for this love, strengthen me with might (Eph 3:16) to experience this love.  I ask for greater revelation of this love.  And we would worship and journal revelation.
  • Continually asking for revelation is so powerful, we grow in revelation.  Each Scripture is like a door we knock on, as God is inviting us into encounter, in the Knowledge of God.
  • The Holy Spirit is with us to teach us, like Jesus taught His disciples.  We must lean not on our own understanding, but seek God.  It helps to ask for the Eph 1:17 Spirit of wisdom and revelation and enlightening of the spiritual eyes.
  • 26 The Holy Spirit…will teach you all things… (Jn. 14:26)
  • 13 The Spirit of truth…will guide you into all truth; He will tell you things to come. (Jn. 16:13)
  • 27 The anointing…abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things… (1 Jn. 2:27)

2) Sing the Scriptures to Him

  • Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord. (Eph 5:18-19 Niv)
  • I believe Eph 5:18-19 is being emphasized by many Spirit-led ministries, as the way to be filled with the Spirit.  The verse says we should not answer the longing of our hearts with drunkenness, but rather be filled with the Spirit, by Singing to Jesus the Scriptures. I believe this is one of the most important verses in the bible about prayer.   This message of singing the Word is being spread all over the world through the prayer movement, and it needs to be a part of our prayer life.  God created the human heart so that singing opens the heart in a way that nothing else does.  Singing the Word is the main biblical prescription, the premier way, to be filled with the Spirit and set on fire for God.  Jesus was the Living Word before He became a man, and now we encounter Him by singing and praying/dialoguing the written word.  So we let the written word take us to the Living Word.  But we must grow our hearts in praying the Word.
  • “Biblical ideas that you sing are ideas that you own.” They become yours.
    Premiere means to get the scripture deep in us: sing it, pray it, and not to the air, but to Him. Often.
    Is there anything as satisfying and powerful as singing about the details of Jesus, and declaring to Him that He is beautiful?
  • To pray consistently, pray the scriptures. The word of God is the “chariot” the Holy Spirit rides on best in our lives and heart.
    To pray consistently, sing the scriptures. Singing unlocks the heart, causes truth to go deeper, and makes prayer enjoyable.
    Sing the word of God until you feel something on the inside move. Then sing more.
    To study the word and comprehend it is transforming; to then pray it and sing it – consuming.
    Prayer & the corresponding power of the Holy Spirit makes the heart fertile soil for the seed of the word to flourish.
  • Click on the picture on the top right to see an archived worship with the Word set, with us at Ihop-kc, a 24-7 worship and intercession ministry.
  • When we stand before God on Judgment Day, He is not going to ask us how big of house did we get, or how big did we make our bank account, but how big did our heart get by experiencing His love and revelation (1st commandment.)

3) Fast

  • Fasting does not ‘earn’ us more of God.  It does increase our capacity to experience the Holy Spirit, and accelerate the process of communing prayer.  I have found fasting on water, 1 day a week, to be unparallelled in terms of its impact on my experiencing of God.  I am calling fiery believers to fast at least one day a week.  The benefits are tremendous in fasting two days a week, but let desire for God drive your fasting, not commands or religious spirit.
  • This depth of fasting is well within the reach of most people.  But we desperately need more revelation of Jesus as our Bridegroom who has burning desire for us and fiery affections toward us.  As we live in the truth of the bridal paradigm, we fast because we long for Jesus.  Jesus told the Pharisees the day would come when the Bridegroom would be taken away from the disciples, and then they would fast out of longing for Him (Matt. 9:15).  When Jesus ascended to Heaven after His death and resurrection, He was taken away in the sense indicated in this Scripture.  The Bride of Christ is meant to long for His return, His Second Coming, and fasting is one way we express this longing.
  • By knowing Jesus as our Bridegroom and seeing ourselves as His Bride, we will become energized with a spirit of prayer and filled with courage to live lives abandoned to God in holiness. Only then will fasting seem appropriate, reasonable or Continue reading

Eph 1:17 Spirit of Revelation

Apostolic Prayers: the Spirit of Revelation (Eph. 1:15-23)

After I heard of your faith…and your love…16 I do not cease…making mention of you in my prayers: 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him (Father), 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know (experience) what is the hope of His (Father’s) calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. 22 He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all. (Eph. 1:15-23)

I use this video to pray this prayer:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sl6ulp8lsDw

I. CONTINUAL PRAYER TO THE FATHER OF GLORY FOR THE SAINTS (EPH. 1:15-17)

I do not cease…making mention of you in my prayers: 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit… of revelation in the knowledge of Him… (Eph. 1:16-17)

A.        Paul was writing from his prison cell in Rome to a Church that he knew well since he established the church of Ephesus (Acts 19-20). Paul received reports that that they we filled with faith and love. This greatly encouraged Paul in his imprisonment.

B.        We see Paul’s revelation of the power of prayer. Paul did not cease to make mention of the Ephesian believers in prayer (Eph. 1:16). God will give the spirit of revelation to us to the degree that we ask Him to. We must not have “trust” God’s sovereignty in an unbiblical way by “trusting” Him to do what He requires us to do. We cannot do God’s part and He will not do our part. We must seek to obey Him as we fill our heart with His Word and ask Him for revelation.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened…(Mt. 7:7)

You do not have because you do not ask. (Jas 4:2)

C.        We see Paul’s revelation of the power of prayer as well as his highest focus in prayer (for the spirit of revelation). Paul did not cease to make mention of the Ephesian believers in prayer

D.        Paul appealed to God as the God of Jesus and the Father of glory (Eph. 1:17).

1. The God of our Lord Jesus Christ – what God did for Jesus in His humanity is the ideal

picture of what God is committed to doing for His people.

2. Father of glory – the glory that God possesses is the glory that He longs to impart to His people according to their hunger for it. This is the core reality behind this prayer.

E.         Paul had just outlined specific aspects of the Father’s willing to give His glory (spiritual blessings) to His people in Christ (Eph. 1:3-14). This is one of the clearest and most comprehensive statements in the Bible describing the grace and glory that God lavishes upon His people (Eph. 1:8).

F.         God, motivated by love, predestined (determined) that those who said yes to Jesus would be made holy and blameless before Him and would enjoy the exalted position of being His adopted children (Eph. 1:4-5). God established the final plan to glorify His people in His sight. Paul is revealing that God’s plan was predestined (determined) not the chose of the individuals. For this reason, Paul continued in prayer that that saints would experience more of this predetermined plan which reveals God’s longing and commitment to lavish His grace on us (Eph. 1:15, 17).

He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons… (Eph. 1:4-5)

You have crowned him (the redeemed) with glory and honor, and set him over the works of Your hands… 10 For it was fitting for Him…in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. (Heb. 2:7, 10)

Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16 do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: (Eph. 1:15-16)

G.        God’s plan was always to bring us into His glory. He planned to bring the heavenly realm together with the earthly realm that we might experience His glory in fullness forever.

            The mystery of His will…10 He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth… (Eph. 1:9-10)

H. Our spiritual foundation is in receiving from the Father who gives His glory in different ways:

1. He gives us His power, wisdom and love (tender mercy and affection).

2. He reveals His beauty in which He fascinates His people (Rev. 4-5).

3. He gives from His desire to share (impart) His glory to those He loves.

II. THE SPIRIT OF WISDOM AND REVELATION IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD (EPH. 1:17)

That the Father of glory may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know (experience) what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe (Eph. 1:17-19)

A.        Paul prayed that they might come to more fully experience the knowledge of God in active intimacy (Eph. 1:17-19) as the only way to walk in the glory of these spiritual blessings (Eph. 1:3-14) in this life. This prayer for active intimacy with God has one general request with three specific requests that flow out the main one. Paul understood that intimacy with God was the essential foundation for us to experience the three specific requests (Eph. 1:18-19).

1. It is helpful to know that Paul’s primary prayer focus was that people know or encounter God by receiving the spirit of wisdom and revelation.

2. In other words, to receive living understanding (divine illumination) as God the Spirit r  eveals God the Father and Son to the human spirit.

B.        Our greatest need is to receive a greater measure of the spirit of wisdom and revelation. This is almost always the greatest need of your loved ones (saved and unsaved), ministries, cities, nations or governments that you pray for. Satan’s most common attack is the opposite of this by releasing accusation and deception to confuse our hearts.

C.        Our eyes being enlightened explains what it means to receive the spirit of wisdom and revelation. In other words, our minds are enabled to perceive God and God imparts grace to our affections to love God and feel His presence.

D.        God’s glory is helps us sustain a lifestyle of receiving His supernatural influence on our heart. This is the most neglected spiritual treasure on this planet.

E.         The unaided mind cannot receive revelation because it is living understanding from the Spirit.

We have received…the Spirit…that we might know the things…freely given to us by God…14 The natural man (unaided mind) does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them… (1 Cor. 2:12-14)

Blessed are you…flesh and blood has not revealed this…but My Father in heaven. (Mt 16:17)

F.         The Spirit reveals God by enabling our human capacities to receive more. Thus, it takes a lifestyle that aggressively pursues the things of the Spirit to receive more of the Spirit. The strongest eyes are useless when a person is in total darkness. The natural man has no spiritual sight. His eyes do not perceive Jesus’ power and beauty.

G.        The Scripture is more than intellectual ideas, but it is a divine revelation, an unveiling of spiritual things which requires supernatural abilities and produces spiritual effects on the “eyes of our understanding being enlightened.” In other words, we must pray for this as the top priority in our life. This must not be reduced to “our minds receiving new ideas.”

H.        God as light imparts insight, holiness and happiness with anointed encounters.

I.          It takes God to know God, thus, we must earnestly pray for more of this. To Paul this was the primary need for the Ephesian saints. Revelation is the most powerful influence that equips our hearts for wholeheartedness. If we can see what Paul saw, then we can embrace what he embraced. Seeing determines the depth of our sustained choices for holiness.

J.         That you may know (experience) (Eph. 1:18) – to know is to encounter and experience God’s glory. Revelation is the unveiling of God Himself.

1. The Greek word “knowledge” (epignosis) refers to experiential knowledge which is much more than informational knowledge of true facts about God.

2. To know or encounter God is the essence of eternal salvation (John 17:3; Phil 3:10).

This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only God and Jesus Christ. (Jn 17:3)

K.        Paul prayed a general prayer that they receive more revelation of God. Then Paul added three specific prayers that flow out of encounter. He wanted the people with enlightened eyes to know (Gr. eidenai) or experience three specific dimensions of God’s glory:

1. First, to have assurance (hope) related to their life calling (assignment) in God.

2. Second, to experience the wealth of being God’s inheritance (what He desires most).

3. Third, to experience God’s power in our mind, heart and ministry.

III. EXPERIENCING THE ASSURANCE OF GOD’S CALLING FOR OUR LIVES (EPH. 1:18)

That the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation…that you may know (experience) what is the hope (assurance) of His calling… (Eph. 1:17-18)

A.        The first specific request relates to what we are to do. Paul wanted them to have assurance or confidence in knowing God’s calling or divine assignment for their lives and how God evaluated their calling or lives work.

B.        God has a tailor made mandate or assignment for each person’s life that includes both the present and future. This brings us confidence in our dignity and greatness before God.

C.        God offers us a great future. He wants to impart confidence in us now, that is related to our present labors and struggles that are so small and weak and seemly insignificant in man’s eyes.

D.        What we are to do: our calling (destiny) speaks of our unique assignment that God has given us. This is a vast subject that encompasses time and eternity. In this age, our assignment changes through the seasons of our life. The revelation of our destiny, Divine mandate, unique purpose and design is essential to walking with our hearts fully alive.

E.         This specific part speaks of knowing God’s revealed will in our life.

Epaphras…always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. (Col. 4:12)

F.         This is one of the main emphases in Paul’s prayer for the Colossians.

We…do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will…10 that you may have a walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God… (Col. 1:9-10)

G.        We have the glory of a significant function now and in 50 years, 500 years and 5,000 years, etc. We have a specific work in our life that we must faithfully carry out with meekness and a servant spirit. The significance of these labors is only clear to those with enlightened understanding.

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. (Eph. 2:10)

H.        We do very small things that are great in God’s esteem. Wisdom is knowing what God esteems. We can live with certainty that our small labors will reap great rewards before God.

Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord. (Mt. 25:21)

I.          To evaluate our lives and labors with living understanding. The very small things are evaluated by God as great. Every compared to God is very small. There are 100 billion stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. However, God has created over 100 million galaxies in the known universe. We will never produce something that is big to Him. Our freedom is in seeking to establish something that is great in terms of love, meekness and understanding not in terms of seeking to impress God or men but the biggest of what we build with our hands.

J.         Our small and weak function now will dynamically impact our position and calling in the New Heavens and Earth. We must have assurance related to our present calling and labors to live fully alive. We must be anchored in eternity to walk steady in our assignment in this age.

K.        Our life is dynamically changed when we have assurance that what we are doing is valuable to God. In other words, we feel powerful when we know that God esteems the way that we spend our life (even if men do not sees its value). It is powerful to have confidence that what we do and the sacrifices we make matters greatly to God and that He will remember it forever.

L.         It includes the revelation that there is continuity of what we do in this age with the age to come. Much insecurity and fear is related to lacking this revelation of our greatness in God.

M.       This specific part speaks encompasses more than having assurance of salvation. It is vital to be assured we are partakers of God’s effectual or regenerative call. Paul was laboring in prayer that they have more than assurance of salvation since they were already fervent in love and faith (Eph. 1:15).

IV. EXPERIENCING THE GLORY OF BEING GOD’S INHERITANCE (EPH. 1:18)

That the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation…that you may know (experience)…what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints… (Eph. 1:17-18)

A.        The second specific request relates to who we are to God. This prayer is to realize that we are God’s inheritance. By making us His inheritance, God has revealed His passion for us. Paul spoke of both our inheritance in God (Eph. 1:14) and of God’s inheritance in us (Eph. 1:18).

B.        Paul is making a reference to Moses’ revelation from God in Deut. 32:9.

For the LORD’s portion is His people; Jacob is the place of His inheritance. (Deut. 32:9) “They shall be Mine,” says the LORD of hosts, “…I will make them My jewels.” (Mal. 3:17) Jesus…who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross… (Heb. 12:2)

C.        We are God’s inheritance. We are what the Father has given to the Son as His reward. God’s valuation of his people is established by his valuation of Christ. To see the value that God places on us, Paul wants us to experience some of the “riches of the glory” of being God’s inheritance,

D.        Who we are to God: this touches the issue of our spiritual identity. This is very different than what we do before God in our calling or mandate. It is the revelation of who we are in God’s heart and affection. We see our greatness, value, dignity, honor and beauty that we have in Jesus’ eyes. We are the prize of all the ages that the Father gave the Son. We are the reward that He most longs for. In this revelation, we see the greatness that we possess before Jesus’ heart.

E.         Much of our insecurity and fear is related to lacking this revelation of our dignity.

F.         We confess that we are Jesus’ favorites in that He loves us as the Father loves Him.

As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you… (Jn. 15:9)

G.        We confess that we are the Father’s favorites in that He loves us as that He loves Jesus.

That the world may know that You…have loved them as You have loved Me. (Jn. 17:23)

H.        There are infinite riches (wealth) in being the focus of God’s affection. The power of knowing this is without precedent in human experience. We confess that these truths as Satan’s attacks us.

My Beloved is mine, and I am His. (Song 2:16)

            You have ravished My heart, My sister, My Bride… (Song 4:9)

            I am my Beloved’s and His desire is toward me. (Song 7:10)

V. EXPERIENCING THE EXCEEDING GREATNESS OF GOD’S POWER (EPH. 1:19)

That the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation…that you may know (experience)…19 what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe… (Eph. 1:17-19)

A.        The third specific request relates to how we are empowered to live out our life in God. This prayer request is to experience the power of God. Power (Gr. dunamis) refers to a God’s strength and energetic grace that we need to overcome temptation. This is the power available to all believers (Phil. 3:10; Col. 1:11).

B.        How we are to live out our life in God: We must not be content with powerless Christianity. Rather, we contend for NT Christianity that experiences the power of the resurrection. Much of our insecurity and fear is related to lacking this revelation of our provision.

You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me…to the end of the earth. (Acts 1:8)

VI. THE WORKING OF GOD’S MIGHTY POWER IN JESUS (EPH. 1:19)

That you may know…19 what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. 22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all. (Eph. 1:18-23)

A.        God manifested this power in Christ in three different instances. This is the same power that we experience when we say no to sin or pray for the sick or for God’s justice to break forth.

B.        The first manifestation of God’s power in Christ was manifest in Jesus’ resurrection and ascension to the Father’s right hand (Eph. 1:20-21).

1. Jesus was exalted far above all rule and levels of authority in the demonic, angelic and human realms (Col. 1:16; Phil. 2:8-11) in the present and future (1 Cor. 15:23-28).

2. Jesus as a Man was elevated to the Father’s right hand because of His obedience to death (Phil. 2:6-11).The destruction of death occurred when Jesus was raised as the firstfruits of our resurrection.

C.        The second manifestation of God’s power in Christ was the Father making all things subject to Christ (Eph. 1:22). God will show forth Jesus as a Man the head over all creation. God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything (1:22). All God’s sovereignty is mediated through Christ (1 Cor. 15:27; Ps. 110:1).

1. Adam lost his lordship over creation when he sinned. Jesus re-gained it by His obedience (Eph. 1:10; Rom. 5:12-21). Jesus’ lordship over creation will be obvious when He reigns over the earth in the Millennium (Ps. 8:6; 1 Cor. 15:27; Heb. 2:6-8).

2. Jesus will exercise authority over everything in creation including the land, seas and skies.

D.        The third manifestation of God’s power in Christ is when the Father placed all things under Jesus’ feet and appointed as Him as the Head over the Church which is His body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way (Eph. 1:22-23; 4:15; 5:23; Col. 1:18).

1. Part of this dimension of His lordship is evident now. We can claim the authority of Jesus our head as we resist sinful and satanic opposition against us. The church is both the body of Christ and the fullness of Him who fills everything in with God’s presence and blessing through Jesus (Eph. 4:10-11).

2. The Church could not come into being as a body filled with God’s Spirit until Jesus had ascended into heaven to become our head.

E. All God’s power works through and for the good of His Church. Jesus’ sovereignty is exercised for the benefit of His church.

F. Paul continues with these ideas in Eph. 2, where he describes that God made us alive with Christ and raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly places (Eph. 2:4-6).

PART II>

Satan is called the god of this world, to blind our eyes, the eyes of our heart.  The number-one thing that Paul prayed was Eph 1:17 revelation, the increments of revelation would strike our heart.  We’ve got to go before the Lord. It takes time in the Word; it takes time in waiting. Our weak, mumbling, fumbling little prayers really matter. We have this vision that Paul the apostle prayed in the King James language. He did not; he was just a guy making his way through until power began to touch him. I covet in my life the spirit of revelation. I need more revelation. We must make the acquiring of revelation the number-one issue in our life.

Many know the verse Hosea 4:6 about how people ‘cast off restrain’ or live in the lust of the flesh, because of ‘lack of vision.’  Some translations have this verse as God’s people perish for lack of vision.  What we can take from this is that the people we tend to judge as being in sin are possibly only in sin because of the lack of ‘the Holy Spirit releasing spiritual revelation of Jesus to them, and enlightening their eyes to God.’  John 6:44 says No one can come to Christ unless the Father draw them.  If you want them to come to Christ, pray the Father to release a Spirit of Revelation, and enlighten their eyes.

Paul goes on to list 3 crucial things that happen when the Spirit of revelation is fully poured out in us.  These three prayers also define what our heart needs most.  The Holy Spirit gave Paul the apostle this prayer and the Spirit knows what man needs.  Now this introductory revelation is needed by every unsaved person.  But Paul is praying for the church here.  Even the Christian who walks the closest to Jesus needs more of this revelation at each stage of their life.

For the Church:

“We pray for the spirit of wisdom and revelation, that God would release to us the revelation of the knowledge of God.” Now, what is that talking about? It’s talking about God’s beauty and His splendor and His power. It’s also talking about the revelation of how Jesus thought and how He lived His life in His humanity. Beloved, the spirit of revelation isn’t just about God in the heavens. It’s a revelation about how the God-Man, Jesus in His humanity carried His heart on the earth. We need the revelation of the knowledge of how He processed life.  For we are His disciples, called to walk as He did.

Isaiah gives an insight on how Jesus processed His life. Isaiah was prophesying about the Messiah. Look at Isaiah 49:4. This is Jesus speaking, Isaiah is having prophetic revelation of it. He says, “I have labored in vain, I have spent My strength for nothing and in vain” (Is. 49:4). He means according to man’s estimation. Here He is after thirty years of faithfully obeying God; then, after three and a half years of ministry, the nation rejects Him.

Many of His disciples turned away from Him; the multitudes denounced Him. One of His own betrayed Him; the others all fell away that night. The nation resisted Him. It says, “I said in My heart before men, ‘They say I labored in vain according to man’s estimation.”  Here’s Jesus: “I have spent My strength for nothing. I have not produced anything.” However, He’s only talking about it in the same way Paul talked about the weaknesses of the crucified life.  (They are so-called weaknesses, the world calls them weak, for God has chosen the seemingly weak things to shame the wise and strong.)  It’s important to note, He then says, “Yet surely My just reward is with the Lord, and My work with My God” (Is. 49:4). He meant ultimately His reward that will be openly manifest at the second coming in the Millennial kingdom, when all the nations come to Him at His return.

When we walk as Jesus walked we are sowing into the spirit.  Jesus said in Luke 19:17 ‘if you are faithful in small things, I will make you ruler over 10 cities.  (when He returns to establish His Kingdom).  Meaning that not everyone is called to preach in stadiums like Billy Graham.  We all have different works we are called to, the most important work is to grow in the Spirit of revelation by Psalm 1 meditating in the Word day and night (see also Jn 3:29).  And also to grow in the progression of Eph 3:16, which is to increase our capacity for the Holy Spirit, unto experiencing the love of Christ and being in His presense.

He will not judge us by how big our ministry is, but how big our heart is.  Did we do the first commandment, loving Him with all our heart.  I will say that what is implied their is the 1Jn 4:19 principle that we grow in love for Him, by feeding our hearts on His love for us (paraphrase).  This is the most important revelation.

But also we will be judge on the 2nd commandment, loving our neighbors as ourselves.  The issue with this is that most of us don’t love ourselves.  Insecurity and rejection must be broken by feeding our hearts on His love for us.  This is why I love the bridal paradigm of Song of Solomon, the affections of the Bridegroom are all holy agape and are so powerful.  We love those Jesus puts in our path.  We turn the other cheek and do not defend ourselves but embrace the cross, the fellowship of sufferings.

But making a daily prayer list and asking for revelation of Jesus, and of the Father, that we may walk closer.  Three powerful things happen because of this.  Eph 1:19-20: we see the hope of our calling in God, we see how we are cherished by Jesus because we are His portion from the Father and we see how much power He has to answer our prayers if we are those who have confidence in Him and keep asking, not stumbling over the time delay.

We need more revelation of Jesus, there is so much more available.  Each Scripture is a door to be knocked on in revelation of God by the Holy Spirit.

What To Do In Our Personal Prayer Time

The Necessity of Developing a Prayer Life – A Resource from Ihop

We must offer specific prayers, not just think about our needs. God requires that we ask because it causes us to interact with His heart. He requires that we verbalize our prayers not just think on them.  This also helps us to control our thoughts in prayer.  Here’s some biblical starters on prayer.  Scripture contains the blessings God wants to give, guaranteed to be answered if we stay persistance, it’s what we were created to need and be fulfilled with.  Print this out and keep with your devotional material.

2 You do not have because you do not ask. (Jas 4:2)

6 In everything by prayer…let your requests be made known to God… (Phil. 4:6)

God’s resources are withheld to “starve us out of prayerlessness”. He jealously protects His relationship with us by not answering our need until we ask for them. There are blessings that God has chosen to give, but only as His people ask Him in faith (confidence with focus).

18 The Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you…19 He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; when He hears it, He will answer you. (Isa. 30:18-19)

If we invest the effort to draw near to God, He will draw near to us by manifesting His presence.

8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (Jas 4:8)

Do not grow weary when the answer to our prayer is delayed.

7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. 8 He who sows to his flesh will…reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will…reap life.

9 Let us not grow weary…in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. (Gal. 6:7-9)

We encounter His glory in various ways and measures including our heart being tenderized by the Word. We must not despise the small measures in which God releases His glory in us.

10 For who has despised the day of small things? (Zech. 4:10)

We focus our mind on the Father who sits on His Throne (Rev. 4) or on the Spirit who lives in our spirit (2 Cor. 13:14). We are not speaking to the air but to a real Person.

Take time to repeat the request often and slowly; and occasionally express your affection and thanksgiving to God. We are speaking to a Person that we love and who loves us. Take time for moments of silence with spontaneous sighs or groans (Rom. 8:26) and praying in the spirit. Do not think praying fast and loud is proof of being passionate. Being engaged is to be attentive.

Pray much in the spirit: seek to pray in the spirit for 1 hour a day focusing on the Throne. Paul prayed in the spirit more than all (1 Cor. 14:18). We edify our spirit and receive mysteries (revelation) when praying in the spirit (1 Cor. 14:2, 4). In corporate prayer meetings, show consideration to others by praying in tongues quietly to avoid distracting others (1 Cor. 14:28).

2 He who speaks in a tongue…speaks mysteries…4 He edifies himself…28 Let him keep silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God. (1 Cor. 14:2, 4, 28)

II. WHAT TO DO IN THE PRAYER ROOM

What to do in the Prayer Room: engage with what is happening on the platform by ‘repeating’ some of the ‘prayer phrases’ heard on the mic as we focus on God.

When not engaged with what is happening on the platform, we pray, read Scripture or study. I strongly encourage all to have an action plan to provide focus for their prayer and study time.

Personal Bible study action plan: read 10 chapters of the NT per day (6 days a week in order to read through the NT once a month). Read biographies of people who lived in the Spirit, study the individual books of the Bible (use FSM courses and commentaries) and read godly books.

Personal prayer action plan: establish a simple prayer list to provide focus to your prayer time.

We want the optimum benefit from our prayer time thus, we need to be focused in these times. I select and omit different parts of my prayer list each day and I leave it whenever I feel led to.

Three main prayer categories: my personal life, for people and places then for social issues

1. Prayer for personal life: inner man, ministry and circumstances (finance, health and relationships) along with prayer-reading the Word (turning it to conversation with Jesus)

2. Prayer for people and places: individuals, ministries, marketplace and governmental authorities and the destiny of cities or nations (Israel, Egypt, etc.)

3. Prayer for strategic social issues: justice (abortion, human trafficking), civil unrest (riots) or calamities (hurricane, drought, famine), or social crisis (Sept. 11, genocide, etc.)

Three main prayer requests: the gifts of the Spirit (God’s manifest power or favor), the fruit of the Spirit (godly character) and the wisdom of the Spirit (insight, revelation)

1. The gifts of the Spirit (God’s manifest power or favor)

7 The manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one…8 for to one is given the word of wisdom…to another the word of knowledge…9 to another faith…gifts of healings…10 working of miracles…prophecy…discerning of spirits… (1 Cor. 12:7-10)

2. The fruit of the Spirit (godly character)

22 The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. (Gal. 5:22-23)

3. The wisdom of the Spirit (insight, revelation)

17 The Father of glory may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him… (Eph. 1:17)

III. PERSONAL LIFE: RELEASE OF GOD’S GLORY ON MY INNER MAN

A. GIFTS: supernatural encounters with God: visitations, dreams, visions, manifestations (fire, etc.)

17 I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams. (Acts 2:17)

51 You shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending… (Jn. 1:51)

B. FRUIT: (heart and speech): love for God and people with purity and humility

  • 37 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul… (Mt. 22:37)

Pray: Holy Spirit Release God’s love into my heart. The anointing to walk in love is our greatest reward (Jn. 17:26; Phil. 1:9; 2 Thes. 3:5; Rom. 5:5; 1 Thes. 3:12).

  • 5 The love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit… (Rom. 5:5)
  • 26 That the love with which You loved Me may be in them… (Jn. 17:26)

2. Grace to set my heart to love to God by fully obeying His Word (Ps. 19:12; 139:23)

3. Tenderize my heart with the power and fire of God’s Word (Lk. 24:32; Jer. 20:9)

4. Impart God’s zeal to my heart (Jn. 2:17; Num. 25:11)

5. Guard my lips from loose speech (Ps. 19:14; Ps. 141:3; Ps. 17:3; Ps. 39:1). Sustained communion with the Spirit requires restrained communication with man (Eph. 4:29; 5:4).

6. Release the fear of God in my heart (Jer. 32:40; Ps. 86:11; Isa. 11:3; 66:2)

7. Fill me with perseverance in godliness, labors in ministry and persecution (Col. 1:11)

8. Fill me with joy, peace and comfort (2 Thes. 2:16-17; Rom. 15:33)

C. WISDOM: revelation of God’s personality and Word with wisdom to walk out the practicality of love and humility (Eph. 1:17). Knowledge of God’s love for me (Eph. 3:17-19; 1 Jn. 3:1).

Revelation of God’s will for my life (Col. 1:9). Revelation of God’s End-Time purposes (Dan. 11:35; 12:10). Reveal to me eternity (Ps. 39:4-6, 90:12), the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21), the Judgment Seat (1 Cor 3:11-15), the resurrected body (1 Cor. 15) and hell (Rev. 20:11-15).

  • 17 The Father of glory give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation of Him… (Eph. 1:17)
  • 9 Do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding… (Col. 1:9)

IV. PERSONAL LIFE: RELEASE OF GOD’S GLORY THROUGH MY MINISTRY

A. GIFTS: the full release of the gifts of the Spirit in my life (1 Cor. 12:7-10)

1. Power on my hands: Spirit released on those we lay hands on (Acts 8:18; 19:11-12)

2. Power on my eyes: prophetic insight to see God’s secrets for others (1 Cor. 14:25)

3. Power of my mouth: power of conviction on my words (speaking or singing)

  • 8 He will convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment… (Jn. 16:8)

4. Spirit of prayer: release God’s burdens in me (Ezek. 9:4; Zech 12:10; Rom. 8:26)

5. Spirit of boldness: fearlessly and fully proclaim God’s word (Acts 4:29-31; Eph. 6:19)

B. FRUIT: that those I impact walk in sustained godliness and reach others (multiplied impact)

  • 16 I appointed you that you…bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain… (Jn. 15:16)
  • 19 The wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. (Mt. 13:19)

C. WISDOM: inquire of the Lord to know the who, what, when, where in my ministry (Col. 1:9)

  • 12 Epaphras…always laboring fervently for you in prayers that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. (Col. 4:12)

V. PERSONAL LIFE: CIRCUMSTANCES (PHYSICAL, FINANCIAL AND RELATIONAL)

  • 2 I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. (3 Jn. 2)

A. GIFTS: God’s power and favor on all my circumstances (Ps. 91, Deut. 28:1-14)

1. Physically: on my body for heath, protection, strength to fulfill my assignment in life

2. Financially: abundant blessing that I may help others

3. Relationally: for unity (remove all division) and favor (strategic connections)

B. FRUIT: that God’s blessing on my life results in righteousness and joy increasing in others instead of resulting in oppression or harm. We are blessed so that we may be a blessing to others.

  • 10 That you…being fruitful in every good work… (Col. 1:10)

C. WISDOM: inquire of the Lord to know who, what, when, where related to my circumstances. To have paradigm shifts as I receive creative wisdom for my family, relationships, marketplace, etc.

Holy Spirit Inspired Prayers

I recommend you print these out and keep near your devotional material, they are very powerful and crucial for more of the Holy Spirit in your life and also powerful to be prayed for others and for churches and cities.  They are what is prayed at most houses of prayer.  Paul’s prayers were inspired by the Holy Spirit for churches, i.e. they are what the Holy Spirit make happen in every church, and every believer.. so they are guaranteed to be answered.  All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms (Eph 1:3).  These blessings are our inheritance, and neccessary for the fullness of life in God, in our journey to becoming more Christlike.

Prayer for revelation of Jesus’ beauty that we might walk in our calling and destiny by God’s power:

Father of glory, I ask for the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 enlighten the eyes of my understanding; that I may receive revelation of the hope of His calling (assurance/clarity of God’s call for my life) and the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints (our destiny as Jesus’ inheritance), and the exceeding greatness of His power (Eph. 1:17-19) (More notes to come)

And Prayer to receive the Spirit’s power that Jesus’ Presence be manifest in us so we experience God’s love.

According to the riches of Your glory, strengthen me with might through Your Spirit in my inner man, That Christ may dwell (manifest His presence) in my heart through faith; root me and ground me in Your love for me, that I may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height– to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; so I can be filled with all the fullness of God. (Eph. 3:16-19).

Prayer for God’s love to abound in us by the knowledge of God resulting in righteousness in our life

9 That your love may abound still more and more in knowledge (of God) and all discernment, 10 that you may approve (rejoice in) the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere (no compromise) and without offense till the day of Christ, 11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness… (Phil. 1:9-11)

Prayer to know God’s will, to be fruitful in ministry and strengthened by intimacy with God

9 That you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10 that you may have a walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy… (Col. 1:9-11)

Prayer for unity in the church and to be filled with supernatural joy, peace and hope (confidence)

5 May the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another…6 that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the…Father…13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Rom. 15:5-6, 13)

To be enriched by all the gifts of the Spirit including powerful preaching and prophetic revelation

5 That you were enriched in everything by Him in all utterance (anointed preaching/singing) and all knowledge (prophetic revelation), 6 even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you (by miracles), 7 so that you come short in no gift, eagerly waiting for the revelation of…Jesus Christ, 8 who will also confirm you to the end, that you may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Cor. 1:5-8)

For the release of grace to bring the Church to maturity especially to abound in love and holiness

10 Praying exceedingly that… (God will release His Spirit and grace to) perfect what is lacking in your faith?…12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all… 13 that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father. (1 Thes. 3:10-13)

Pray to be worthy (prepared or made spiritually mature)

to walk in the fulness of our destiny in God 11 We pray always for you that God would count you worthy of (prepare us for) this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness (plans for us) and the work of faith with power, 12 that the name of…Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God. (2 Thes. 1:11-12)

Joy in the Lord

One of the greatest things I ever did was read Psa 119 about David’s delight being in the Law, and ask the Lord to make that happen to me.  Many at Ihop say ‘it takes God to know God’ and this is no exception.  Each Scripture is an invitation to a reality in God, we must take each verse and ask for either revelation on it, or power to obey it.  In this case, power to obey it, and the Lord made David’s testimony mine.  Instead of being religious about the Word, I enjoyed it.  I began to have joy and joy and joy! in delight in rejoicing in Him.  Try it and don’t give up until He does it.  Hunger is a neccesary part though, with the measure you ask for the measure you recieve!

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