The Berean Expositor
Volume 20 - Page 152 of 195
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pp. 170 - 172
It is the custom in most meetings to "open with prayer", and this is well, for it
manifests the sense of dependence that all should feel. It expresses the utter need of the
Lord's guidance, teaching and blessing, without which service is vain, and it does, or
should, bring every heart into loyal and loving subjection to the Lord of life and glory,
that from unfeigned lips may ascend the prayer: "Speak, Lord, for Thy servant heareth."
There have been occasions, however, when it has been felt that those who were
engaging in prayer needed some check, some anchor, some leading, and it will often be
found a great help if, before prayer is actually made, some portion of the Scriptures be
read which shall steady and direct the thoughts in a true and right channel.
It may help some of our readers who have the responsibility of meetings if we briefly
record one or two passages of Scripture which we have used when circumstances seemed
to call for such assistance.
Phil. 1: 1-21.
Verse 6.--God will "finish". Remember this promise; it will modify any tendency
to undue anxiety. We start with a consciousness of God and His faithfulness.
Verse 7.--This promise of verse 6 is not incompatible with our responsibility. We
have a blessed privilege as fellow-workers of God.
Verse 9.--The actual prayer of the apostle is enlightening. Do we in our measure
pray in a similar wisdom and spirit?
Verses 12-18.--Notice the spirit of Paul, and his one ground of rejoicing--
"notwithstanding, every way, Christ is preached."
Verses 19, 20.--How Paul expected answer to prayer: (1) Your prayer, (2) The
Lord's supply, (3) My expectation.
Psalm 73:
To catch the sense, translate the words "Truly", "Verily", and "Surely" of verses 1,
13 and 18, by the colloquial, "After all". Verse 1 is only to be learned "in the sanctuary"
(verse 17). Note the change in point of view (verses 3-12, and 24-26). Prayer can lead us
into this sanctuary experience.