Build ourselves up in the faith, (most holy) pray in the Holy Spirit,
keep ourselves in God’s love.
And looking forward to eternal life.
Title: The Spiritual Life 2 - the spirit gives us life - flesh is no help
Key Scripture Jude 20
But you, beloved, must remember the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; for they said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, indulging their own ungodly lusts.” It is these worldly people, devoid of the Spirit, who are causing divisions.
But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit; keep yourselves in the love of God; look forward to the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. Jude 1:17-21
Jude after some warnings and then an Exhortation to strengthen themselves in the faith by prayer, godliness, and hope.
I Spoke last week about building ourselves up and making ourselves stronger in faith
Prayer we know builds us up
Last week we began by exploring This idea of being in the beloved and the idea of being kept by God and the importance of being built up.
First I will be Looking today about What do we mean when we say prayer
Prayer in Greek can also be come forward and imply there is some kind of motion involved, movement. To come forward and ask.
Second what exactly is praying With the Holy Spirit
Or In the spirit as opposed to the flesh.
Praying with the idea that you are more than just flesh.
Prayer in Holy Spirit can mean total engagement.
Prayer is communicating or asking but it’s more than that.
Being present in prayer (centred.)
The idea of meditation and prayer going together
Being honest in prayer
Being Earnest in prayer (availing fervent prayer)
Believing when we ask (does not doubt in your heart)
Staying alert in prayer
Being kept by the power of God.
The idea of unity is vital, praying together with others.
Communication is fundamental in any relationship.
Praying talking to God from a position or praying is a position a spiritual position.
Often people seen Kneeling in prayer maybe there is something to this or not
But there is a Changing in posture Physically or spiritually
Being filled with the Holy Spirit
To being present in the moment
A meditation a silence a quiet place of surrender.
Jesus said in his sermon prayer is not for show, but it’s a place where you connect with your father
“And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. “When you are praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Matthew 6:5-8
The idea of the image of God being the Wise father and the son the hero.
It’s Christ who saves us under the watchful eyes of the father
And the son point us to pray for our keeping and our role in extending the kingdom
Look at the Lord’s Prayer which comes after this,
Think of the priestly blessing about being kept from evil.
The people of Israel understood the kingdom blessing and what it meant to be safe in the arms of God.
This praying and keeping is not a hard task: we already are kept and beloved, that’s our identity, that’s where this began.
Prayer is the antidote to worry
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. “So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
Matthew 6:25,33-34 Paul confirmed this
Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Philippians 4:6 -
Peter says it like this
Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in your faith, for you know that your brothers and sisters in all the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the power forever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 5:7-11
Back to this idea that there is a contention for our soul in Jude,
God has entrusted the faith to us to contend for.
Will we choose to keep our identity in faith- fullness, or will we wander like the angels, like the stars, tossed like waves, fruitless like barren trees, echoing the sins of those who have fallen before us? We are kept, so keep on in faithfulness.
Set your sight by prayer in spirit and truth
Those who come forward to god in prayer and in worship have the right idea
Know what you want, not be double minded Prayer is a safe space to be honest
When People lie they only deceive themselves
James talks about this kind of prayer James 4
You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, in order to spend what you get on your pleasures. Adulterers!
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.
There are those who Twist the truth to get
what they want
When you are wrong and you know what you are doing is wrong yet you find an excuse from scripture to make it okay.
But the problem you know it’s wrong and you are violating your own conscience
Prayer realises us from Repression
Prayer helps us bare the truth in a space that’s safe.
It’s not easy to tell the absolute truth if we live in fear of the consequences.
Praying with an ability not just our own
Praying in the Spirit is the only time this kind of prayer is specific.
We don’t always know what’s best for us which is why we need internal and external communication and thoughts and meditation. When our spirit and the Holy Spirit come to alignment
He helps us in our weakness, there is a renewal that comes from the spirit.
It means that we pray in His strength and wisdom: He moves our hearts and directs our petitions
We need the spirit to come into us he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. Titus 3:5
In Paul’s teaching on spiritual warfare he concluded
Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints.
Unity is the great them of Ephesians
If there is these heavenly powers we don’t need to fear them we need to stay together.
Praying from a position of unity And Staying alert
I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love. I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine,
It’s this kind of inner strength that comes from the spirit.
Jesus asks his disciples to pray - could you not stay alert for me in my toughest challenge.
Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”
But they don’t their flesh is weak.
Jesus prays in the garden just before being betrayed.
and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you may not come into the time of trial.”
Be on your guard and stay alert! For you do not know when the appointed time will come.
Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray at all times and not lose heart:
Paul Peter and James Jude looking at unity and being kept
In context of warfare Jesus prays and his prayer is described as rejoicing
At that same hour Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will.
Luke 10:21 Close
Prayer is a conscience effort to engage with potential
You have potential but if you don’t make a step up - all you are is potential and nothing more.
It’s an Active movement towards something better.
Even the chicken that crossed the road was smart enough to aim to get to something better.
Prayer is More than a wish to a genie.
Collective prayer brings unity - unity gives us strength in times of adversity
There is something deep Inside us which gives us wisdom and depth
Remember we are more than our flesh, engagement with our spirit we can tap into a realm beyond ourselves into where God wants us to operate in his spirit.
Our body’s are an interpretative structure of who we are in our spirit and it’s when our spirit joins with the Holy Spirit we come into alignment in prayer.
Let’s not violate our conscience by deception. Let’s be honest
Which goes back to who we are in Christ as new creations restored to original as we were made in his image
That we are all created equal in the sight of God and we all have potential to be more than who we are
We are conscious beings who can communicate their thoughts.
Which is why we speak out our frustrations fears casting our cares upon him
Jude says for a spiritual life we must strengthen ourselves in the faith by prayer, godliness, and hope.
One of the keys to building ourselves is an active movement towards God shown by a life of prayer.
Prayer is active engagement with our Heavenly Father in a movement towards his kingdom and his rule established on earth.