GOOD NEWS. Week 33 Knocking at Midnight: Teach Us To Pray

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Leonard Ravenhill, an English evangelist who challenged the church to hunger and thirst for revival through prayer,  puts it like this.
There's nothing more transfiguring than prayer.
People often ask, "Why do you insist on prayer so much?"
The answer is very simple - because Jesus did.
You could change the title of the Gospel according to St. Luke to the Gospel of Prayer.
It's the prayer life of Jesus.
The other evangelists say that Jesus was in the Jordan and the Spirit descended on Him as a dove - Luke says it was
while He was praying
that the Spirit descended on Him.
The other evangelists say that Jesus chose 12 disciples - Luke says it was after He spent
a night in prayer
that He chose 12 disciples.
The other evangelists say that Jesus died on a cross - Luke says that even when He was dying
Jesus was praying
for those who persecuted Him.
The other evangelists say Jesus went on a mount and He was transfigured - Luke says it was
while He was praying
that He was transfigured.
There's nothing more transfiguring than prayer.

Teach Us To Pray

The disciples lived with Jesus for 3 years.
The saw his miracles.
They heard his teaching.
They watched his life.
Of all the questions they could have Jesus, think about it...
Jesus, teach us to do miracles.
Jesus, teach us to speak with power and authority.
Jesus, teach to understand.
Of all the things they could have asked Jesus, they asked him to teach them to pray.
Perhaps they understood that the miracles happened because of his prayer life.
Perhaps they understood his power came form his communication with God.
Perhaps they realized that when Jesus prayed something was different.
Perhaps they recognized the priority that Jesus placed on prayer.
They wanted spiritual instruction.
They saw in Jesus a man of prayer.
They knew John had taught his disciples to pray, and they wanted Jesus to teach them.
There was something different in Jesus.
The could pray.
But they realized that the way Jesus prayed was different.
He modeled prayer because he lived prayer.
He understood the power and importance of communion, fellowship, time with his Heavenly Father.
So in Luke 11:1-4 we see Jesus begin this teaching on prayer
Luke 11:1–4 CSB
He was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John also taught his disciples.” He said to them, “Whenever you pray, say, Father, your name be honored as holy. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves also forgive everyone in debt to us. And do not bring us into temptation.”
So these disciples, hungry for whatever Jesus has, seeking spiritual knowledge, come to Jesus and speak one of the most profound and wise requests in Scripture, Teach Us To Pray.
Before we get into the prayer, I want to repeat a phrase, Spiritual Knowledge.
See, prayer isn't merely head knowledge.
Discipleship isn't merely head knowledge.
Christian faith isn't merely head knowledge.
True Theology isn't merely head knowledge.
There's a deeper knowledge.

Spiritual Knowledge

C.S. Lewis calls is Deep Magic.
A knowledge that goes beyond understand, a knowledge of the ancient truth.
The Psalmist David wrote,
Psalm 42:7 CSB
Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your breakers and your billows have swept over me.
There is a spiritual knowledge that only comes from spending time with the Spirit.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes fools wise.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes sick whole.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes sinners saints.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes the dead alive.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes a heart of stone a heart of flesh.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes the old gone and the new come.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes doubt doubt and faith arise.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes paupers kings and daughters priests.
There is a spiritual knowledge that makes the weak strong,
the tired renewed,
the broken whole,
the empty filled,
the bound free,
the cursed blessed,
the naked clothed,
the confused complete,
the oppressed overcoming,
the depressed joyful,
the demonized delivered,
the abused emboldened,
the downtrodden uplifted.
There is a spiritual knowledge that changes situations and perspectives.
There is a spiritual knowledge that transforms minds and renews spirits and heals hearts.
This deep knowledge only comes through prayer.
This deep knowledge only comes through Spirit-enabled, word-soaked, desperate-soul searching prayer.
The disciples wanted this kind of Spirit Knowledge.
They saw the empty religion of the Pharisees.
They saw the hypocrisy of the religious.
They saw the powerless ritual of the Priests.
And then they saw Jesus.
Nobody ever spake like He spake.
Nobody ever did what He did.
He had authority to cast out devils,
heal the sick,
forgive the sinner,
stand up for the poor and marginalized,
challenge bad religion,
and bring God nearer than anyone in history.
They wanted this Spirit Knowledge.
And they knew how Jesus had it.
So they say, Teach us to pray.

The Model Prayer

The Gospel of Matthew also records this teaching prayer
Some call it he LORD’s Prayer or the Model Prayer
Matthew 6:9–13 CSB
“Therefore, you should pray like this: Our Father in heaven, your name be honored as holy. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
Let's unpack the doctrine, the Spiritual Knowledge of the prayer.

Our Father in Heaven -

God is Father.
We are his children.
Jesus taught us to understand divine relationship.
In Christ we are sons and daughters of God in heaven.
If we know how to give good gifts to our children how much greater does God know how to provide for his children.

Hallowed / Holy by Your Name -

God is holy. Perfect.
He alone is worthy of worship and praise.

Your Kingdom Come -

There is a kingdom outside of our reality that we are too long for.
We are seek His kingdom.
A kingdom of love, peace, justice, mercy, righteousness.
We are to pray for that Kingdom to invade us.

Your Will be Done -

As we seek this spiritual knowledge we begin to desire God's will to be done.
We recognize that His will is perfect because He is perfect.
We recognize that His will isn't the norm in our present reality, but God let Your will be done...

On Earth as it is in Heaven -

In heaven God's will is never thwarted.
But in this creation he has given us the ability to rebel.
God crush the rebel.
Crush my rebellious heart.
Make my heart Your home.
And make earth like heaven.
Let this be a new earth and let it begin now!

Give us Our Daily Bread -

Provide for us and teach us to depend on You.
God has the provision for today.
Just like he fed the Hebrew's in the wilderness with manna daily and forced them to depend on Him daily but also proved Himself faithful, God provide, teach, and prove Your faithfulness.

Forgive us as we Forgive -

Jesus wants us to understand that Spiritual knowledge has a direct impact in our natural relationships.
We will not wade into the Deep until we learn to practice forgiveness.
Jesus is concerned about how we treat one another.
Since Creation God has concerned Himself in how we forgive, how we live together.
If we don't practice forgiveness we will not be forgiven.
We cannot fully experience the deep magic, the Spirit knowledge, and be unconcerned with our fellow man.
Forgiven people forgive.
And forgiven people demonstrate the grace of God the transformational power of prayer.

Lead Us Not into Temptation but Deliver Us From Evil

God don't let the trial be greater than we can handle.
He promises it won't be.
But will always provide a way of escape.
Deliver us from Evil.
From the Evil One.
Don't let Satan have the last word.
Satan will not have the final say.
You will deliver us from Evil.

For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. -

It's all about You Father. Your kingdom. Your glory. Your power.
We worship You.
Amen - Let it be!
See the disciples learned how to access the Deep Spiritual Knowledge- Prayer.
Leonard Ravenhill says prayer doesn't change things, prayer changes people.
It's that Deep Spiritual Knowledge that changes people.
Connecting with God the Father through the Son by the Holy Spirit through prayer changes us.

Knocking At Midnight

After Jesus gives them a model prayer he tells them a parable.
Luke 11:5–8 CSB
He also said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend and goes to him at midnight and says to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I don’t have anything to offer him.’ Then he will answer from inside and say, ‘Don’t bother me! The door is already locked, and my children and I have gone to bed. I can’t get up to give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he won’t get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his friend’s shameless boldness, he will get up and give him as much as he needs.
Do you have the kind of shameless boldness that would have you knocking on the door of a friends house at midnight to get bread for someone your friend doesn’t even know?
I mean seriously? Thats boldness.
That’s confidence In the character of your friend.
I mean some friends would be so close that they’d say, man go home I’ll give you bread in the morning. It’s midnight. You don’t need bread right now.
But it wasn't the friendship that cause the newly awakened friend to give bread, it was the shameless boldness of his friend.
This man trusted the character of the sleeping friend.
And this sleeping friend understood that his friend wouldn’t be knocking at midnight if it wasn’t important to him.
Hear me, some of you are knocking at midnight!
There’s no where else to go.
There’s no other source of bread.
There’s no other person you can trust.
There’s no other answer.
There’s no other hope.
There’s no other power.
There’s no other who can meet the need.
No other who can deliver.
No other who can give you peace.
No other who can heal.
No other who can speak truth over you.
There’s no where else to go.
There’s no doctor.
There’s no philosopher.
There’s no employer.
There’s no friend.
There’s no politician.
There’s no one who can meet your need like Jesus.
There’s nobody like Jesus.
Nobody like Jesus.
And you are knocking at midnight.
You’re not sure how much longer you can wait.
You’re not sure how much time you’ve got.
Keep knocking.
The Father will aswer.
It’s his character to answer.
It’s his nature to answer.
It’s his delight to answer.
Knock with shameless boldness.
It’s midnight.
And can’t nobody meet your need like Jesus!
It may be midnight, but you serve a God who doesn’t have to be awakened.
It may be midnight, but you serve a God who doesn’t stress.
It may be midnight, but you serve a God who has all the bread you need.
It may be midnight, but you serve a God who isn’t bound be time or distance.
It may be midnight, but keep knocking.
God has what you need!

Ask, Seek, Knock

Take your shameless boldness and listen to Jesus
Luke 11:9–13 CSB
“So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?”
So I say, Jesus says.
Ask and it will be given.
Seek and you will find.
Knock and the door will be opened.


A-     (v 11) Good Gifts
(James 1:16-18) Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17 zEvery good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from athe Father of lights bwith whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.4 18 cOf his own will hedbrought us forth by the word of truth, ethat we should be a kind of ffirstfruits of his creatures.
Sometimes even Good and Perfect gifts are a received through struggle and trial.
Good and Perfect gifts from God reveal in us the perfection of his unchanging nature.
Always good. Always perfect.
Not always comfortable or easy.
Always bringing us closer to the image of Christ in us.


A-Until we have an answer.
Until God answers.
Sometimes hold on.
But there’s always an answer.
Same with our Kids.
He is not silent.
We too often aren’t listening.
Ask, Seek, Knock.
It’s continual communication with our Father.
Moses took years to receive the fulfillment of the answer.
Joseph, in prison for years before he is released.
We don’t give up just because we don’t tangibly see the answer manifest.
If God has said he would do it.
Keep asking. Keep seeking. Keep knocking.
Unless you have clarity from God that the answer is no, don’t give up.
But if you know the answer is no, don’t keep asking.
We know some things are NO.
Let the no’s go and keep seeking the GOOD and PERFECT gifts.
What he has said Yes to in your life are far greater than the things he has said No to.
No matter how good the thing is you are seeking sounds to you, if he says NO, the No is better.


A- Like a child.
(vs. 9) If his son asks for bread…
(Mark  10) 13 And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples nrebuked them. 14 But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, o“Let the children come to me; pdo not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 15 qTruly, I say to you, whoever does not rreceive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” 16 And she took them in his arms and blessed them, tlaying his hands on them.
For those of us that are no longer children understanding what it means to have faith like a child can be difficult.
We could talk about obedience, kids are obedient.
We could talk about trust, kids are trusting.
We could talk about love, kids are loving.
But I think there’s something greater than all of those things embodied in the child-like faith.
Wonder. Amazement.
Thank of Christmas.
To kids Christmas is the amazing time of the year.
Presents just appear under a tree in your living room.
Amazement. Wonder.
If presents can show up under a tree, anything is possible.
Anything is possible.
With man, the impossible is impossible.
But not with God.
With God all things are possible.
The angel even told that to Mary at the first Christmas.
I tink Jesus wants us to see the magic (As Tolkien or Lewis would call it) the magic of GOD.
Jesus wants us to be amazed at GOD.
Jesus wants us to be in wonder of what God does.
Child like faith.
Believing that even the craziest things (sin forgiven, wrongs made right, addictions broken, sickness healed, tears wiped away) even the craziest things are possible with GOD.


A- Like a good daddy.
Abba, they way Jesus spoke of God in Mark, the way we are encouraged to speak of him in Romans and Galatians, is equivalent of our term for our father’s, daddy.
He’s not just a Father, a life giver.
We live in a culture where men father kids but don’t ever daddy them.
God isn’t just a Father, he’s a dad.
You know the difference:
Two ladies talking at a soccer game about a dead beat “That man, that’s his father.”
When a man is good you hear this, “He’s such a good daddy”.
That’s God. He’s a good dad.
I know that can mess up our formalism, or tradition, our religious mindedness.
But God is a good daddy to his children.
He picks us up when we fall.
He wipes tears when we cry.
He carries us when we’re too tired to walk.
It doesn’t bother him.
He’s a good daddy.
He loves it.
He wants it that way.
He disciplines us when we get out of line.
He changes our poopy diapers.
He teaches us to walk.
He feeds us and clothes us.
He calms our fears.
He whispers he loves us.
He spends time with us.
He knows what we need before we ask.
He gives us good gifts when we ask.
That’s how God longs to deal with his children: As a good Daddy.
So when you pray, you don’t have to fear, or speak eloquently, or manipulate, or even talk sometimes.
Just get in his presence and let him do what Good Dads do. Let Him Love you.
It may be midnight but GOD has GOOD for his sons and daughters!

Keep Knocking at Midnight

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