Thursday, May 29, 2014

An oddly wonderful prayer

When I read the bible, I read through a whole book. Not all at once, usually chapter by chapter. And sometimes if the chapter is long, or convicting, or complicated, only part of the chapter. Then I pray. Then I listen to an expositor. If I can't find a good sermon I read a commentary on the passage. Then I read the passage again. Usually a phrase or a verse will leap out at me, and I'll mull that, I'll look at parallel verses, or the historical background, and pray. And pray some more. Then I go on with the next chapter. In this way the Spirit delivers understanding and sews the quilt of the bible together pieces by piece so that little by little I gain understanding.

Finding credible Old Testament expositors is difficult but we as a body of believers are blessed to have John MacArthur's Isaiah sermons, Martyn Lloyd Jones, and S. Lewis Johnson to name a few. I'm reading Hosea right now and Pastor Lewis has a sermon series on the entire book.

I appreciate the care and accuracy he applies to his preaching. But also I've come to appreciate his prayers. He prays after reading the text and he prays at the end. His prayers are moving. They are just as wonderful as the text he is preaching on. He prays with sensitivity, within biblical standards, concerns from the heart...and this. I thought this was an odd and wonderful prayer. Odd because no one prays this any more.

"We pray for the whole church, for all of those who name in sincerity the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and we pray, O God, that those who counterfeit Christianity may experience failure. We know that Thou hast said, the church will be founded upon the confession that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against the true church, and we pray O God for all of the manifestations of the truth. We pray for the other churches where the gospel is proclaimed, and today Lord may they be fruitful in their ministry." ~S Lewis Johnson

Praying for the failure of the counterfeits, while at the same time praying for all manifestations of the truth. How wonderful.

Hosea 7, "The Blessedness of Grey Hair"
Sermon audio



  1. Elizabeth, Charles lee feinberg, John mac's mentor years ago at Talbot has wonderful commentaries. His "Minor Prophets" and Ezekiel commentaries are excellent. He was a Jewish Christian and dean at Talbot.
    The book if Hosea is about Israel as the adulterous wife of God.
    Anyway, thought u might be interested.

    1. Yes! Feinberg's "Minor Prophets" - fantastic! I second that recommendation!

      And I do pray the counterfeits would be exposed... especially in a way that would make it clear to those with poor discernment, so they can flee the false teachings.


  2. For the past year The Lord has led me to pray that the false teachers be exposed. That they would not prosper I deceiving people anymore. This is the only way I pray..of course I do pray that they would repent. I also pray for those leaders who are flirting with these false teachers that what they are doing will be exposed as well before the leaven leavens the whole lump.

  3. Elizabeth, off topic a little but you might want to check out Dr. Michael Vlach's blog. He teaches at Master's.

  4. My apologies -- my reply was INTENDED to go under the "He's Coming On the Clouds" essay Elizabeth wrote! {Grrrr... what I get for writing at 1:30 in the morning! lol}
    Elizabeth: by chance, could you put my responses there instead, I wonder?

    1. LOL, no worries. Been there done that myself! I moved both halves...I hope I did it right. Thanks as always for your input.


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