Posted in Prayer, quotes on January 13, 2009 |
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“Our reluctance to meet together for prayer may stem sometimes from our neglect of holiness and a sense of estrangement from other Christians. The neglect of private prayer soon leads to the neglect of corporate prayer. If I lose my desire to join in prayer with others, I urgently need to ask “Why?” because it is always a danger sign.”–Prime.
“The fellowship of corporate prayer is a most precious privilege, and the Christian who deprives himself of it deprives himself of one of God’s superlative encouragements and blessings.”–Prime.
“The one concern of the devil is to keep Christians from praying. He fears nothing from prayerless studies, prayerless work, prayerless religion. He laughs at our toil, he mocks our wisdom but he trembles when we pray.”–Samuel Chadwick
“The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. But Scripture (Ac. 2:1-2; 4:24, 31; 12:5; 13:1-4) and experience combine to teach that the united prayers of many righteous accomplish still more.”–Oswald Sanders
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Paul describes himself as a “servant of Jesus Christ” in Philippians 1:1. From my message Sunday on Philippians I spoke about what it meant to be a servant then and what it means to be a servant now.
The Greek word for “servant” is doulos. A doulos! The word is translated “slave” in other versions. It’s a word that describes ownership, allegiance, dependence, subjection, and loyalty. Christians are servants of Christ. We have been bought with a price! We are not our own! We must glorify God with our bodies, souls and minds!
In Paul’s day there were three ways a person became a slave: by conquest (if you city or state was conquered by another power, you became a slave to that foreign power); by birth (your parents were slaves when you were born so you automatically became the property of their owner) or by debt (you couldn’t pay your bills so you sold yourself to your creditor). Similarly there are three ways that we are as the Bible describes us “slaves to sin.” We have become slaves by our birth, by conquest [sin rules over us], and by debt [the wages of our sin is death].
But the Christian is one who has been set free from the harsh slavery of sin and has become a servant of Jesus Christ. Not in the sense of a slave in servile bondage to a harsh master, but one who becomes a servant because of affection and love, not fear and compulsion. In the OT, one could become a permanent slave to his master willing by having his ear pierced and giving the rest of his life to a good master.
Now just as there were three ways to become a slave, so there were three ways to gain your freedom: by earning it through good service, by buying your freedom, and finally by having someone else purchase your freedom. But, my friends, there is only one way to be free from sin. You can’t earn God’s favor. All your righteousness will never earn salvation. Nor can you every buy it! You could never pay the infinite penalty of your sin to God! The price is death! So the only way you can enjoy freedom from the slavery of sin is to have another purchase your release. And that is what Jesus Christ did on the cross for sinners! He paid the price of God’s justice. He died for sinners like you and me! And because He took our place, we can have peace with God! We can have full forgiveness of sin and be reconciled to God! Today! You must repent of your sin and believe in Christ! Salvation is a free gift! He gave His life at great cost and offers your His righteousness, a loving relationship with God, peace, joy, and eternal life! Will you not come to Christ right now and respond in faith to his salvation?
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