University of prayer – Part 1
I AM talking about the art or ministry of prayer.
There is no other matter more important than this as far as full time ministry is concerned, especially in this present time that we are in the world, if you want to affect your world.
It is my prayer and trust that your own life will be totally transformed and revolutionised as you go through this series.
Establishing Daily Dynamic Encounters
And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed (Mark 1:35).
The Priority of Priorities
The number one priority in the life of the Master of masters was to establish a daily dynamic encounter with his Father every morning before other things.
He had other encounters with the Father throughout the day but this morning encounter was of utmost importance to Him.
If what was most important to the Master is taken lightly, we cannot achieve much for God’s Kingdom.
David the Psalmist also made the morning watch a daily, set, ingrained practice.
My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up. (Psa.5:3).
He says again …I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning… (Psa.59:16).
He was a man that was picked from obscurity, the last born in a family of eight males, a common shepherd boy that Heaven skyrocketed from oblivion to be the most prominent in his nation and one of the most significant men on planet earth.
The key priority in his life was this early morning daily dynamic encounter with God. There is no substitute for this.
The devout Jews observed three distinct one hour prayer watches daily. They referred to David and Daniel as their authority.
Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. (Psa.55:17).
Now…Daniel…kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God as he did aforetime. (Dan. 6:10).
Till date, pious Jews still observe these three one hour prayer watches.
If our poor frail bodies need physical refreshment from food three times a day, how much more our spirits. Christianity was built on the foundation of Judaism.
All the first apostles were practising Jews. The early church religiously observed these three prayer watches.
Three distinct times are clearly identifiable in the book of Acts: one is the 3’d hour, which is 9.00am G.M.T.
This was also the same hour the early morning burnt sacrifice was offered.
It was at this time that Jews gathered outside the tabernacle while the sacrifice was being offered. (See Luke 1:9-10).
It was at this same time that the early Church experienced the day of Pentecost.
When they spoke in diverse tongues and men demanded an explanation, Peter responded: For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day (Acts 2:15).
So, the early Church were gathered in an early morning prayer meeting when the Holy Ghost fell on them.
The second was the sixth hour, which corresponds to 12 noon. Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour.
Thirdly, the ninth hour corresponded to 3.00pm, which was also the set time for the evening sacrifice.
Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour (Acts 3:1).
So the Jews observed three distinct hours of prayer. The early Church did likewise.
Peter who was the chief Apostle of the Apostolic band appeared in all three scriptures just quoted.
Anointing flows from the head down (Psa. 137:1-3). Compare also Acts 10:9.
No wonder the early Church was unbeatable, unsinkable and unstoppable.
Rev. Amb. Theodore Effiong
Assemblies of God Church, Calabar
Or Prayer To All Nations (PTAN),
Prayer City, Calabar. CRS
Phone – +234 903 0012 007, +234 703 1921 770
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