Dangerous Prayers - Part 3
No more weak sauce, a.k.a. half hearted prayers.
The Bible says, Ask and it will be done. Ask and it will be given to you. In the book of Acts, the Early Church...they got into it with God. They were living dangerously. The Leader of the church had just been tried and sentenced to death. Then Jesus raises from the dead and comes to meet with them. Imagine how scared, yet incredibly comforted they were the first time Jesus appeared after his resurrection. When Jesus said wait and pray, they did just that. They said, let’s trust God and let him lead.
Acts 1:4 - Wait
Acts 1:8 - And then you will receive power.
Acts 1:14 - So they prayed constantly.
You can’t pray boring prayers for long. Boring prayers are why when someone says to you, let’s get together for a prayer time, you’re like, "Gah, that sounds so boring." This is why we don’t want to pray much, cause our prayers are short on meaning, boring, and safe. If the early Christians prayed constantly, it was because they were excited to connect with the God of heaven, they where excited to see what he was doing, they where excited that he was changing them. And they were adding to their numbers daily.
Reading Acts 4—Now there's an amazing story. Paul and Peter get arrested for preaching and healing in the name of Jesus. Then one Sabbath they go to the synagogue and heal a guy that can’t walk, and then they are preaching the resurrection of the man (Jesus) that the religious leaders just killed. This is Peter who was a coward; Peter who was changed by the resurrection of Jesus. Needless to say, they caught some attention. Now they (Peter and John) are arrested and brought before the leaders who killed Jesus.
This is where it gets bold and dangerous. The Bible says this in Acts 4:13, "When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.” The word in Greek here for unschooled is idiote. You can figure out what that means. It means the rulers could tell they were not the brightest. But something changed. Now they talked like they knew what they were talking about...because they had been with Jesus.
The Religious elite told them not to speak in the name of Jesus anymore. And here is their reply from Acts 4:19-20, "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
And here is Peter and John’s prayer from verse 29, "Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness."
That prayer was dangerous and powerful. They were threatened by the people who just hung Jesus on a cross and they pray that God will give them bold words, true words, uncomfortable words, but words that must be said. And to say them even though they had been threatened.
You see, when WE have been with God, when WE ask him for boldness—for God to speak for us, for Him to be in control—things change. We change. No more weak sauce.