We Need to Practice PrayingWithout Ceasing
women who, as Colossians 4:2 says, “continue in” (orare “devoted to”) prayer! We need pastors today whoare men of prayer.In his convicting book,
The Preacher and Prayer
, E.M. Bounds writes of the prayerless preacher:I believe that the command to “pray withoutceasing” from 1 Thessalonians 5:17 goes beyond simplyhaving a daily time of prayer. The Greek word translated“without ceasing” was used in secular Greek to describethings like the uninterrupted payment of hard taxes, acontinual uninterrupted cough, repeated military attacks,and the regular and consistent production of fruit. I donot believe that the point is either that we go around allday mumbling prayers, or that we are just to have a regulartime of prayer (although that is part of the idea). Paul isasking believers to have their lives
dominated by the spirit of unceasing prayer
.As a believer, I ought to be in constant fellowshipwith my Lord, and always conscious of His presence. Assuch, I am always quick to, and in an instant able to, prayto the Lord whenever appropriate, needed, or desired.Walvoord, in his commentary on 1 Thessalonians, writesthat this verse not only implies a regular time of prayer,but also “...represents the fact...that we are always in touchwith God. Certainly two friends can be in the same roomand be in harmony and fellowship one with the other, eventhough they may not be talking with each other all thetime. Paul is saying, ‘Do you want a really rich experience?Begin a walk of fellowship with the Lord, not only at statedtimes of prayer, in which you bring all your needs to theLord, but also the unbroken walk of communion —praying without ceasing.’”Again, I ask, “How is your prayer life?” If it isless than desirable, why not confess that sin to the Lordright now, and begin anew an intimate walk with the Lord?God help us, preacher and “layman” alike, to be peopleof prayer, and have ministries bathed in prayer!
by Rev. Michael McCubbinsThe proponents of “Lordship Salvation” saythat it is impossible to be saved without recognizing theLordship of Christ. On the surface, this seems tohave merit, but it does not take into account certainindisputable factors in the areas of doctrine, soteriology,appropriation and compromise.
True Biblical salvation recognizes the absolute deityof Jesus Christ. Simply stated, there is no way that a mancan be saved if he rejects that Jesus Christ is God.However, those that speak of Lordship Salvationare not asking us to simply agree that Christ is God.Instead, Lordship Salvation emphasizes a total submissionto the Lordship of Christ. This salvation is dependentupon making Christ “Lord of your life.” This teaching isin direct opposition to Biblical salvation. We affirm in ourdoctrinal statement that the Bible clearly teaches thatsalvation “is wholly a work of God, performed frombeginning to end by Him.” Therefore, if salvation is “wholly
Second, Lordship Salvation emphasizes the work of the unsaved man. The unsaved man is told to makeChrist Lord over every area of his life instead of simplytrusting in the finished work of Christ. Clearly, the Biblenever puts the emphasis on the sinner but on the work of Christ for salvation.
For by grace areye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.The idea of Lordship salvation shifts the focus away fromthe work of Christ, who declared unequivocally, “It isfinished” (John 19:30), and focuses instead on the work of man to finish his own salvation. This then would leadus to consider a couple of questions:1.Is it ever appropriate to encourage anunsaved man to focus on his own commitment ratherthan the commitment of Christ who has promised tofinish the good work that He has already paid for?a work of God,” which is appropriated by believing in theLord Jesus Christ, then Lordship Salvation is not thesalvation of the Bible.His ministry may draw people to him, tothe Church, to the form and ceremony; butno true drawings to God, no sweet, holy,divine communion induced. The Churchhas been frescoed but not edified, pleasedbut not sanctified. Life is suppressed;a chill is on the summer air; the soil isbaked....the Church [becomes] agraveyard, not an embattled army. Praiseand prayer are stifled; worship is dead. Thepreacher and the preaching have helped sin,not holiness....Preaching which killsis prayerless preaching. Without prayerthe preacher creates death, and notlife. The preacher who is feeble in prayeris feeble in life-giving forces. The preacherwho has retired prayer as a conspicuousand largely prevailing element in hisown character has shorn hispreaching of its distinctive life-giving power.