With June being the month of Father’s Day, I thought I would focus on the power of a praying man. I would like to start by expressing my deepest gratitude to all of the father’s. I thank you from the very bottom of my heart for stepping up to your God given position. It’s a tremendous responsibility which the Lord has entrusted you with. For all of you father’s that pray, I commend you! As we all know, prayer will keep us from falling outside of the boundaries of God’s perfect will.
I believe that many men are failing in their marriages, finances, and vocations simply because of their lack of ability to pray. God has called the men to be spiritual leaders of the home and to set the example for not only his family, but to all he’s affiliated with on a daily basis. There are men in the Bible that knew how to pray. For the next few moments, I would like to focus on one in particular. David.
2 Samuel 15:30— And David went up by the ascent of mount Olivet, and wept as he went up, and had his head covered, and he went barefoot: and all the people that was with him covered every man his head, and they went up, weeping as they went up.
In this scripture, one can see that David was very humbled and in distress. He recognized that his son Absalom had formed a conspiracy against him. Now, David could have taken matters in his own hand and placed his son in confinement, but he didn’t. David earnestly prayed, and by doing so, his servants wept and prayed with him. Now that my friend, is setting a good example.
David turned to God for guidance for his son, for Ahithophel, and all of those who chose to follow Absalom. David’s heart was broken. But what one needs to realize is that at one point in David’s relationship with God, he allowed his guard to come down and slacked in his prayer life. By doing so, he opened the door for Satan to enter into his family.
2 Samuel 11:2-4— And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.
3 And David sent and inquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bath-sheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
4 And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house.
You see, David not only coveted another man’s wife, but he also had Uriah killed.
2 Samuel 11:15— And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die.
David should have been at battle with his men, and he should have been praying for God’s guidance as he did in times past. But instead, David was allowing his mind to be controlled by, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life. However, God sent a Prophet to confront David about his sin.
2 Samuel 12:1-7—And the LORD sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor.
2 The rich man had exceeding many flocks and herds:
3 But the poor man had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter.
4 And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man’s lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him.
5 And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the LORD liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die:
6 And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.
7 And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. . .
You see, David was not able to hide his sin from God. So basically, David pronounced his own judgement when he said the man that committed such an act shall restore fourfold. My friend, David loss four of his son’s, and Absalom being one. The Bible teaches us that the wages of sin is death.
Now, there’s another prayer that David prayed that I would like to focus on for a moment. It can be found in Psalms book 51, but we’re going to only take a look at one verse out of the entire book. By the way, Psalms are broken down in books instead of chapters. Hey, maybe on your own free time, you can read Psalms book 51.
Ps 51:10— Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
Isn’t this beautiful? I realize that people like to refer to David as being a man after God’s own heart because of the way he worshipped God. And I agree that David held a special place in God’s heart because of his worship. The Bible tells us that the Father is looking for those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. However, I happen to believe that David really tugged at the heart of God when he prayed this beautiful prayer of repentance.
Yes, when David prayed at mount Olivet, he humbled himself, but it was different. He was crying out in humility and distress for God’s helping hand and guidance. But when he prayed the prayer in Palms 51, he was crying out for God’s mercy. He needed to be free from the uncleanness of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life. I feel certain that David would never have found himself in such a dilemma with his son, Absalom, if he would have kept his heart pure with God.
Now, let’s focus on our Lord Jesus. One can read where He prayed against temptation.
Matt 4:1-11— Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.
3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
One can see that Jesus prayed against the strategy of Satan with the Word of God. Even though He was God manifested in the flesh, He still needed to maintain a strong prayer life. Why? Because He was just as much man as He was God. He conquered what the first man Adam was not able to conquer; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life.
It’s absolutely imperative that we pray against Satan’s strategy. The closer we get to God, the more Satan will try to distract us. However, if we learn the power behind praying in the Spirit and the Word, we will obtain the victory. The enemy knows our weakness, and that’s why we need to be clothed with the full armor of God. We need to be ready for battle at all times.
Although there are many accounts in the Bible when Jesus found a place of solitude so He could pray, I would like to focus on just one more.
Luke 22:39-46— And he came out, and went, as he was wont, to the mount of Olives; and his disciples also followed him.
40 And when he was at the place, he said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation.
41 And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed,
42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.
43 And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.
44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
45 And when he rose up from prayer, and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow,
46 And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.
Isn’t it amazing how our Lord prayed at the exact same place that David prayed in 2 Samuel 15:30? I stand in awe of the Word of God! One can plainly see that Jesus was in distress as He prayed. So much so that He sweat great drops of blood. He was in complete agony. He knew that His hour had finally come; yet, He still had His flesh to wrestle with.
Often times, I refer to this mount as being the place where our Lords death began. He died out to His own will. What powerful words when we pray to our Heavenly Father, “Not my will, but Thy will be done.”
You see, Jesus knew that He was about to die for the sins of mankind. Our Lord, demonstrated unconditional love for a lost and dying world. At the cross, our Lord made a way for you and me to live victoriously over the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life. What an awesome God that we serve!
I would like to cover one more final topic. Did you know that God has called men to lay down their lives for their family? He has, and I will prove to you that it can be found in the Word of God.
Eph 5:25-33— Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
There you have it. Now, the only way a man could ever love his wife as Jesus loved the church, would be by maintaining a strong personal relationship with the Lord. Yes, I believe in happy-ever-after, but I’m also very realistic. When two people live together, from time to time, there will be problems. The only way we can overcome the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life is by allowing Jesus to be Lord of our homes. Many people call Jesus Savior but few call Him Lord.
So, I say to all of you godly men out there, pray, pray, and pray more. If you’re married with a family, then you have a God given responsibility to love, provide, and nourish them spiritually. Your wife needs to know that she’s the apple of your eye and there’s nothing you wouldn’t do for her. Your children need to see you loving their mother, providing for them, and praying. What a tremendous responsibility! Sad but true, many men are falling short of their God given calling, which is why many homes are falling apart.
Men, I’m fully persuaded that if you do your part, your wife will do her part.
Happy Father’s Day!
P.S. A family that prays together, stays together.