Why Preaching needs prayer.
Preaching in our own power is futile, therefore we pray.
No one would think of planting a seed before preparing the ground.
If you cast your seed on stony ground, it will not take root. If you put a light covering of soil on a bed of concrete and sow a seed, it may sprout but will not take root and will die.
The soil must be prepared beforehand. This is where prayer comes in. It is the Holy Spirit of God that prepares the heart of man to receive the seed of the Word. It is then tended and watered and in the fullness of time will bear fruit.
The Apostle Paul often asked for prayer from the churches in order that his preaching might be bold and effective (Eph. 6:19;
18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
19 And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,
20 For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
3. Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:
4 That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.
The apostles devoted themselves to "prayer and to the preaching ministry" (Acts 6:4). Jesus said, "Apart from me, you can do nothing," (Jn. 15:5) in the context of preparing his disciples to go out and preach (Jn. 15–17).
How is it that we can spend hours sharing the gospel with someone, giving them all the correct information, putting up a good argument for the Gospel and yet that person does not seem to get the message. We spend time giving them booklets and tracts and yet they still don’t respond.
Why is this?
Sermons are not meant merely to inform, but to transform.
A whole family sits under the Gospel in church or one spends time talking to group of friends and one person hears and responds and the rest don’t.
Have you ever wondered why?
Anyone can preach, anyone can share the Gospel, anyone can give a testimony.
However anyone can’t save. We cannot make spiritually dead people live.
Quote from Charles Spurgeon: "Yet what a baseless pride to conceive that our preaching can ever be in itself so powerful that it can turn men from their sins and bring them to God without the working of the Holy Ghost"The best of preachers, the best of story tellers, the best of personal evangelists have no power within themselves to bring a soul to life.
1 Corinthians 3:6-8 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
The difficulty of this task alone should drive us to prayer. To think I can bring healing and reconciliation in my own power is downright silly. Yet if we are honest, many of us really think our ability is enough to pull this off.
We are called to prayer by our leaders and pastors. We are told that the prayer meeting is the powerhouse of the church and right that is too. It is right that we pray for each other, for our fellowship. It is right that we pray for our Evangelists, our teachers, for those who go out to other congregations to preach the word.
However we should also remember that prayer on it’s own does not save anyone.
God as ordained that it is through the preaching of the Word that men shall be saved.
1 Corinthians 1:18 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with eloquent words of wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”…
Romans 1:16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, then to the Greek.
Acts 2:47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
1 Corinthians 1:21 For since in the wisdom of God, the world through its wisdom did not know Him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.
Prayer is essential to evangelism.
We must pray that God will open the eyes of the blind, to unstop the ears and to open the heart to receive the seed of the word .
We must realise that men are dead in trespasses and sins and are of themselves unable to save themselves or prepare themselves for salvation.
Man is not just sick with sin but dead in sin and must be regenerated in order to hear and receive the Gospel.
The ground must be prepared to receive the seed and we must be prepared to spread the seed, to water the seed, even when it was not planted by us and we can be sure that God will give the increase.God said My word shall not return unto Me void.
Isaiah 55:11: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
It is not only the case that we pray for others to spread the Word but we need to pray for ourselves and that others pray for us too, because preaching in our own power is futile, therefore we pray.
We pray as we exegete the text.
We pray as we write the outline and manuscript.We pray before we preach.
We pray as we preach.
We pray after we preach.
The unceasing theme of our preaching should be, "I can do nothing without him!"
John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
Luke 18:1 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
Romans 12:12 - Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;1 Thessalonians 5:17 - Pray without ceasing.
Ephesians 6:18 - Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
Prayer and Evangelism go together.
Prayer prepares the soil, Prayer prepares us, Prayer empowers us in evangelism, Prayer can take away our fears.
God answers prayer.