Can you remember which is the first ever recorded prayer in the Bible?
I guess it can be a bit of a trick question – but definitely one worth looking at.
1. If we conclude that prayer is simply a conversation between God and man, then the answer would be Genesis 3:10: “He answered, ‘I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.'”
Today, I want you to realise that you never – ever need to pray a prayer like that. It’s true, we were all naked in our desperate sinful condition before God, nowhere to go and nowhere to hide. But even as Genesis tells us that God slew an animal and took its skin to cover Adam and Eve, God took Jesus and slew Him on the cross to take His righteousness and cover us with it.
So we can now come boldly to the throne of grace.
2. If we take prayer as man calling on God, then it would be Genesis 4:26: “Seth also had a son, and he named him Enosh. At that time people began to call on the name of the LORD.”
We get the sense of utter desperation as we read this. Locked out from the garden and prevented from reaching the tree of life by a cherubim with a blazing sword, all they had was a memory of what once was. A delightful garden in the presence of God. Too many Christians look back with ‘what once was’ remembering past revivals or past moments.
But listen – with God the best is yet to come, let’s pray and reach for the best revival ever. Right here, right now! Why not? We have the Holy Spirit, the Gospel, each other – the Church. Jesus has died – risen, and still doing what He’s always done. Saving people! Reach with me!
3. If we take prayer as a petition presented before God, then we might conclude that the first such prayer was Genesis 18:25:
“Far be it from you to do such a thing–to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?”
We read of Abraham interceding for Sodom, knowing his own family are living there. Sodom gets destroyed but angels are sent to answer the deepest cry of Abraham’s heart – ‘save my family.’
Let’s intercede for our family today:
Pray for those who need to get saved.
Pray God opens their minds and softens their hearts.
Pray that the Holy Spirit will do what only He can do – convict the lost of their need of a Saviour.
Wouldn’t it just be fantastic if either our unsaved family members came to Christ, or those who have wondered come back? Or those who started the journey but got stuck somewhere start running hard after God?
There are other prayers between the last two above.
4. We read of Noah praying curses down on some of his family, and we read of Melchizedek praying down blessings on Abraham.
Which way do we want to pray? The Bible is packed full of God at work in families, so why not yours?
Hey, here’s an idea:
Even if your family live on the other side of the country invite them over for Easter.
If they are sick and live the other side of the country invite them along to a Healing Meeting.
Let your faith and care be the pathway to their breakthrough.
By the way, we are reinstating an old tradition which has biblical precedent. If they are so sick they can’t come then you come to the meeting bring a clean hanky we will anoint it with oil, pray over it and send it back to them. Once it touches them healing will flow.
Try it and see!
Love you guys,
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