This is a house of Prayer
(Isaiah 56:7 KJVA) Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.
God’s house should be a house of prayer. It would be easy and perhaps I must talk about how important it is for each of us to attend a church on a regular basis.
(Hebrews 10:25 KJVA) Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
However I realize that I am writing this to a lot of different people; some attend a church or synagogue on a regular basis, others have not darkened the door of God’s house in many years. So before you stop reading and think that this message is not for you, read on, I think you will discover some very universal truths that will become relevant and important to all of our personal journeys along this road of life.
I know a lot of people who attend church in their living rooms in front of the television. I also know a couple of people who’s only church is found in these Encouraging Words. To both I feel very sorry for you. For you are missing out on one of life’s greatest rewards. The combination of worshiping the Father in a spiritual surrounding and the putting to the proof our worship through fellowship with different people from all walks of life. It is the fellowship that we have with one another that reveals our true religion of the heart.
It was this fellowship that Isaiah was talking about with the strangers and the eunuchs. God’s Children are multicultural. God is not a respecter of persons and He desires us to come together and worship Him in spirit and in truth. Too often we find Sunday’s to be the most segregated day of the week with people going to the club of their choosing. I say club because I do not find any church that closes its doors to anyone a church at all. The word church itself is translated for the Greek word “ekklēsia;”
a calling out, that is, (concretely) a popular meeting, especially a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Christian community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both): - assembly, church.
The Church of God is those called of God. But again we need to not forsake the assembly of believers and preparing and preserving a special place to worship and glorify God. The church building is an important part of the church body as much as you having a home to go to at night we need to prepare a place where God’s name can be glorified.
So more than just fellowship, the church is the place of worship which draws us closer to God. I should also like to talk about how important it is to respect and keep the church a sacred and holy place. It is not a market place or a place for horse play and wild antics. It is the house of God and God desires it to be a house of Prayer. Remember how when Jesus turned over the tables and drove out the venders of the temple He quoted this passage.
(Matthew 21:12&13 KJVA) And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.
I want to take you back to the first temple that Solomon built. King David before him had envisioned it and it became the most remarkable place of worship in the whole world. If we turn back to the Old Testament, we fist discover how King David desired to have a place of worship for God. At the time there was still only the tent of the tabernacle. The Tabernacle was perfect for the people of Israel as they traveled through the wilderness to the promise land but now they were settled and had a king and David desired a place for all the people to come and worship God.
We are going to start reading at the dedication of Solomon’s Temple. From here I want us to look at the prayer that Solomon prayed in the temple dedication and as we do let’s look at how the temple was originally built to be a house of prayer.
(2 Chronicles 6:7-9 KJVA) Now it was in the heart of David my father to build an house for the name of the LORD God of Israel. But the LORD said to David my father, Forasmuch as it was in thine heart to build an house for my name, thou didst well in that it was in thine heart: Notwithstanding thou shalt not build the house; but thy son which shall come forth out of thy loins, he shall build the house for my name.
So Solomon built the temple and he now dedicates the temple in a prayer to God before all the people.
(2 Chronicles 6:14 KJVA) And said, O LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee in the heaven, nor in the earth; which keepest covenant, and shewest mercy unto thy servants, that walk before thee with all their hearts:
The first part of this prayer is in the recognition of who God is. We have been looking at the book of Nehemiah on Sunday nights. Look with me real quick at the opening of His prayer. The first thing He does is to recognize who God is. We need to realize that God is not some mamby-pamby little creation of our imaginations. He is the GOD of ALL CREATION! He IS ABLE. Don’t put God in a little box and think that that is all there is, because God is bigger than you can even imagine and He is more powerful than any force of nature for He created all of nature, making Him super-natural. Nehemiah knows the greatness of God and as we learn how to pray we need to learn the greatness of who we are praying to.
(Nehemiah 1:5 KJVA) And said, I beseech thee, O LORD God of heaven, the great and terrible God, that keepeth covenant and mercy for them that love him and observe his commandments:
Now to get back to Solomon’s prayer of dedication:
(2 Chronicles 6:21 ASV) And hearken thou to the supplications of thy servant, and of thy people Israel, when they shall pray toward this place: yea, hear thou from thy dwelling-place, even from heaven; and when thou hearest forgive…….
(2 Chronicles 6:24 ASV) And if thy people Israel be smitten down before the enemy, because they have sinned against thee, and shall turn again and confess thy name, and pray and make supplication before thee in this house;
(2 Chronicles 6:25 ASV) then hear thou from heaven, and forgive the sin of thy people Israel, and bring them again unto the land which thou gavest to them and to their fathers……
(2 Chronicles 6:26 ASV) When the heavens are shut up, and there is no rain, because they have sinned against thee; if they pray toward this place, and confess thy name, and turn from their sin, when thou dost afflict them:
If we just look at this prayer it is all about prayer; The house of God is all bout getting in touch with God. The house of God is a place of prayer. It is a place where you come to get in touch with God!
Now, I can not continue without taking you to the next chapter when God answers the Prayer of Solomon.
(2 Chronicles 7:1 ASV) Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt-offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of Jehovah filled the house.
I want you to imagine for just one minute the Glory of God. I want you to seek the Glory of God I want us as a church to call upon the glory of God.
Because our LORD told us to seek and you will find, ask and it will be given, knock and the door will be open. What greater thing on earth can we ask for than the glory of God revealed in our lives.
Now I want us to just read one more thing here in 2nd Chronicles before we wrap all of this up.
(2 Chronicles 7:12 - 14 ASV) And Jehovah appeared to Solomon by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for a house of sacrifice. If I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; if my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
If my people, that’s us. If we would humble ourselves and pray, genuinely seek God’s glory… Turning from our own selfish, wicked ways…… then… Then, THEN your prayers will be answered…. This is a house of prayer…. This is a house of prayer… Now to bring this to the relevance of our everyday life…….
Solomon purchased the best timber from all around the world. He had gold and silver and the greatest craftsmen to construct and build and create this fantastic temple for God’s glory….
God wants you to know that He has built a temple…. The finest temple of all creation… Man today with all of our technological advances can not even come close to even building a fair replica yet alone the quality and perfection of the temple that God has built for His house of prayer… Search the world over and discover that the kingdom of heaven is closer than you think. For the kingdom of heaven is within you…. You are the temple of the Holy Spirit. You are the living stones that make up the royal priesthood. You are the temple of the HOLY SPIRIT.
(1 Corinthians 6:19 LITV) Or do you not know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit in you, which you have from God, and you are not of yourselves?
This is the house that God really desires to be a house of prayer. It is you!!!!
(1 Peter 2:5 KJVA) Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
Jesus when He taught us to pray He did now want us to repeat a rote prayer that He quoted He wanted us to pray from our hearts believing. He tells us that when we pray, believe that we have already received.
(Matthew 21:21 & 22 KJVA) Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
But many will say yet but what you ask must be according to God’s will. And they are correct.
(1 John 5:14 KJVA) And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:
So then what is the will of God for your life? Is it God’s will that you are healthy?
(3 John 1:2 KJVA) Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.
Is it God’s God’s will that you prosper… Read the above passage again…. Maybe that is not enough for you try some more….
(Deuteronomy 29:9 KJVA) Keep therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may prosper in all that ye do.
(Joshua 1:7 KJVA) Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.
(Psalms 1:3 KJVA) And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
But this is not a message about prosperity. Nor is it a message about healing, or love or wholeness or peace… It is about all of these and more. God is exceedingly abundantly able to do for more than you can imagine, and all of the unimaginable power lies dormant with-in you and is accessed through prayer!!!!
And you are a house of prayer. You are the temple of the Holy Spirit, you are the living stones that make up the Holy Tabernacle of God. And your heart is the Holy of Holies and Jesus is the mercy seat.
Today I want us to learn. I want us to remember. I want us to rededicate ourselves and commit ourselves to a life of prayer. Though out the Bible we see how great men and women of God have first gone to God in Prayer and it was their prayer that changed everything. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availith much. I want us as a church to re-dedicate ourselves to prayer. And not the namby-pamby, now I lay me down to sleep prayer of half belief. But a effectual fervency in prayer. Prayer that moves mountains. Prayer that called down the fire of God to consume the sacrifice of Praise that we lift before the LORD. We have and enemy, we have battles to fight but greater is He who is within you than he who is in the world. Turn your temple into a temple of Prayer and know, really know that whatever you ask in His name will be done. All authority in heaven and Earth has been given unto His name. He has given you that authority to bring down the strongholds of the enemy and win the victory in every area of your life. When we as a people who are called by His name will humble ourselves and pray…. Really pray and diligently seek God’s face; seek His glory, then, OH hallelujah, Then the shekniah glory of God will fall and we will see God’s glory working strong in our lives….
I encourage you today to seek God in prayer.