When you get down to pray, are you getting through to God? Is your heart open to the blessed indwelling Holy Spirit so that He can teach you what God actually wants to do with your life?
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing Alright? Hey, something nice came in the mail the other day. Someone who had listened for a good many years, a good many years ago and then had moved away from an area where the broadcast is released, came back recently after an absence of a number of years and again began to fellowship with us on the broadcast. And this individual wrote and said, “well, your message hasn’t changed but your voice is a little more mellow and you seem to have gotten warmer and more mellow.” (Laughs)
Well, whatever that means, if it’s a compliment I’m glad for it. (Laughs) You know I pray every day that God may put His love and His truth and His power and all that can be packed in to a human being by God’s grace that He’ll do that for yours truly, so that what I say can somehow have the sound of God’s love in it.
Ephesians 1, that’s where we are, and Paul is praying for these dear folk at Ephesus. He said, “I don’t cease to pray for you and give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers.” Remember I reminded us that when we pray about people, we ought to look for things concerning which we can thank God for them. Cease not to give thanks for you.
And then, personalize your praying. Don’t say, “Lord, bless all the missionaries.” Find out about some individual missionaries and pray for them and for their needs. You’ll find that your praying is enriched and the results will be thrilling as God answers prayer.
Now what is Paul asking? He said he wants God to give to them, these people at Ephasus, the spirit of wisdom and revelation and the knowledge of Him. Revelation means a contact with the person… that wisdom…first of all, wisdom is a contact with a person that let’s you in to the purpose of what God is doing.
Revelation is the opening up of all of that so that you’ll understand it, what’s going on. And then all of it comes through getting closer to God. Knowing the knowledge it says of Him. Wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him. And like I’ve told you that little Greek word genosco which means personal knowledge. It’s not just head knowledge. There’s a different verb used for just head knowledge, like you know that two plus two equals four, that’s a different verb. This is personal, personal knowledge of God, where you and your blessed Lord have gotten acquainted and you know Him.
Jesus said, “This is life eternal that they may know thee, the only true God in Jesus Christ whom thou has sent.” And when that relationship is enhanced and deepened through daily prayer and meditation on God’s Word and the ministry of God’s indwelling Holy Spirit, when that relationship is deepened and enhanced, then you’re going to have an understanding of what God is doing in your life and in the lives of others around about you. Wisdom and revelation and the knowledge of Him.
Now what is the focal point of what you discover when you get to know God better? What is the focal point of all of that? Well, he says the eyes of your understanding being enlightened. The eyes of your understanding, that’s an interesting figure of speech, isn’t it? Well, that’s precisely what he says in the Greek New Testament here. The word does translate an understanding as I’m looking at the original Greek New Testament here, my old copy that I’ve read through the years. It’s got the word that would translate “heart”. The eyes of your heart, that’s the way we could put it literally.
The eyes of your heart. See, you see with your human eyes, but it’s the eyes of your heart that really make you understand. Huh? Yes. Dr. Dobson told a story in my hearing three or four years ago, which I have never forgotten. He said that he was with a group of tourists somewhere and they had to take some kind of a conveyance where all the people work together. And among those people who were waiting for this conveyance, all of them together, there was a father and a daughter of about maybe 9 or 10 who was obviously a bit retarded, outgoing and warm and happy and friendly and loving.
A wonderful little girl, but she was retarded. And she had discovered a word that does roll easily on her tongue and she loved to use it. I don’t remember exactly now the word, something like whatever. We’ll choose that one anyway; “whatever, whatever” and she kept saying it and the people around her looked at her, looked askance first of all, you know, what’s going on here. And then when they realized what the situation was they would look away.
And this precious little child began to realize that the people around her were not as thrilled, let us say, with her use of that word as she was. And she knew that they were rejecting her in a sense. You see what was happening? There she was, “whatever, whatever, whatever, whatever.” But her father looked at her, Dr. Dobson said, put his strong arm around her shoulders, looked right at her and smiled and said, ‘Yes, babe, whatever. I love you.’” (Laughs) The eyes of your heart, see the difference? Now that’s what Paul is talking about here; the eyes of your heart being enlightened.
You get together with your blessed Lord and you’re going to have more than what we call a head knowledge of scriptures. One thing to be able to quote a verse; it’s another thing — it’s another thing to know about it in your heart. We were — a bunch of us were in a meeting in West Virginia, Charleston, West Virginia during the middle of winter on one occasion. Peter Deyneka was there among others and some of the Youth for Christ leaders and we had scheduled a conference, a two-and-a-half or three-day conference headquarters in a large hotel and various types of seminars and all that. It was an ambitious program.
Well, what happened? A blizzard, a foot of snow or more came down suddenly and everything stopped. Nothing was going on, and the only meetings we had were meetings with ourselves and one or two courageous saints who managed to slog through the drifts and get there. Well, we had a lot of prayer meetings, I’ll tell you that. And I remember Peter Deyneka, you remember him? Now with the Lord, of course. His son Peter Jr. is carrying on the work in a wonderful way. Peter Deyneka — we used to call him Peter Dynamite, great man of prayer. He helped me in many an all-night prayer meeting.
And so we had a prayer meeting and I remember his praying and we always based our praying then I do now on scripture. You pray on the basis of God’s Word because faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. And so we had looked at the scripture. And one of the promises that we looked at was Jeremiah 33:3, Peter’s favorite verse, Peter Deyneka’s favorite verse, “Call on to me and I will answer thee and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not” And so it came his time to pray and he started to pray and he was telling God all about things and asking somehow for blessing.
And suddenly he broke in to an entirely different vain of prayer and he said “Lord, why you do this to me?” He said, “I set aside this time to be here in meetings and I don’t have the time or the money to just sit here and do nothing. Why you do this to me?” And then he remembered the verse and he said, “You said in your word call unto me and I will answer you.” He got through somehow as we say, he got through to heaven in his praying. And there were some very wonderful things came out of that conference.
Not the least of which was that God raised up some extra help for his mission. From a few contacts were made during those snowy — snowed in days. “Lord, why you do this?” and then he remembered the verse, “Call unto me.” And he really prayed it. He really believed it. You see? The eyes of your heart being enlightened. He prayed it with his heart, not just his head, and the answer came.
Let me ask you a question, beloved, are you praying these days with your heart? When you get down to pray, are you getting through to God? Is your heart open to the blessed indwelling Holy Spirit so that he can teach you what God actually wants to do with your life? I trust that that may be so and I pray that it may be so for Bob Cook, first of all. The eyes of your heart being enlightened that you may know.
And now what are you going to know when you begin to understand what God is doing. That you may know what is the hope of His calling. We covered this that last time or two that we were together. God has called us, called us to be saints, called us to share in His glory, called us to suffer, called to serve here until we’re called, called to thankfulness.
And the hope of His calling, God has called you. Stop long enough to realize that your position in the Lord Jesus Christ is not happenstance. It is the result of God’s planning from before the foundation of the world, you know, that’s Ephesians 1:4, “He hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world.” See. And then it’s the result of God’s deliberate calling of you, what should we say to these things? Paul says over in Romans 8. Do you remember that passage?
I know you hear me turning the pages and I can’t help it. Somebody wrote me and said the only thing that annoys me is to hear you turning the pages of your Bible. Well, I can’t help it. I got to get there, don’t I? (Laughs) “Whom he called, them he also justified; and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” See, this is the process, “whom he did foreknow,” that’s Ephesians 1:4, “chosen in him before the foundation of the world”, he did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his son. “And them he also called and whom he called, he justified and whom he justified, he glorified.” “God is for us, who can be against us?” That is the sense of what Paul is saying here in Ephesians 1. See, the hope of his calling.
Have you trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ as your Lord and your savior? If you have, you are just as safe and secure as though you had been in heaven a million years. Because the plan of God started before the foundation of the world is in operation in your life this minute. Yield yourself to the indwelling Spirit of God. Do your praying and your obeying of the basis of the Word and let the plan of God work out in your life. Well, we go on with this the next time we get together.
Dear Father, today may we pray with our heart and understand thus what God wants to accomplish in Jesus name. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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