Pray For All People
Sermon Text: 1 Timothy 2:1-10
Sermon Theme: Prayer is a uniting with God. It is to be entered into with awe and joy, with respect and a sense of responsibility. We are engaged in the worldwide mission of glorifying God, especially as demonstrated through the spread of the gospel as people come to salvation through Jesus Christ.
A Moment of Thought:
The seventeenth-century English Puritan Richard Baxter wrote, “Oh, if you have the hearts of Christians or of men in you, let them yearn towards your poor ignorant, ungodly neighbors. Alas, there is but a step betwixt them and death and hell; many hundred diseases are waiting ready to seize on them, and if they die unregenerate, they are lost forever. Have you hearts of rock, that cannot pity men in such a case as this? If you believe not the Word of God, and the danger of sinners, why are you Christians yourselves? If you do believe it, why do you not bestir yourself to the helping of others? Do you not care who is damned, so you be saved? If so, you have sufficient cause to pity yourselves, for it is a frame of spirit utterly inconsistent with grace…Dost thou live close by them, or meet them in the streets, or labor with them, or travel with them, or sit and talk with them, and say nothing to them of their souls, or the life to come? If their houses were on fire, thou wouldst run and help them; and wilt thou not help them when their souls are almost at the fire of hell?” [Cited from A Puritan Golden Treasury].
Proseuchē (prayers) is a general word for prayer and in Scripture, it is used only in reference to God. It thus carries with it a unique element of worship and reverence. Prayer for the lost is ultimately directed at God as an act of worship, because the salvation of sinners causes them to give glory to Him. Moreover, we are told that God desires all to be saved. He takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather delights when sinners turn from their evil ways and live (Ezekiel 33:11). So, prayer for the salvation of the lost is perfectly consistent with the heart of God. He has commanded all men to repent (Acts 17:30). We must pray that they will do so and embrace the salvation offered to all (Titus 2:11).
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