Wonderful Things Happen When I Pray: The Godhead Acts

 

When we pray to God, we activate all members of the Godhead. (Colossians 2:9) For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily. 

It is important to understand the roles of each member of the Godhead and how they are a part of our prayer. Isn’t it wonderful that we are not alone. The Godhead is all around us making sure our prayer is formed, delivered and received as a sweet savor to our God and Father.

  1. God the Father listens as the one “to whom” we pray
    • God listens because He loves us unconditionally, like a parent loves their child. (John 3:16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
      • As parents, we love our children without measure and worry about constantly — the boo-boos, the sports injuries, that first broken heart. We also celebrate with them — cleaning their room, making good grades in school, deciding to become a Christian. 
    • God is the one we pray to because of His authority. (Romans 13:1) Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.
      • I get nervous when police follow me, even though I have done nothing wrong, I think they are going to pull me over and discover drugs or a dead body in my vehicle. I obviously watch too many movies. Respect for authority also includes a healthy amount of fear in breaking the rules. Respecting God’s authority should also come with a dose of fear.
      • Never forget that our NT God of love and peace was also the same God who told the children of Israel to wipe out every person in the cities of Canaan. Jericho, Ai, the five cities from the mountain, the southern cities, the northern cities were all wiped out to make room for the twelve tribes of Israel.
    • We pray to God because this was the example Jesus left for us. (Matthew 6:7-13) And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
      • Example: Our son, Michael, was four years old and having a migraine. Karen went in to check on him and told him to pray about it to get his mind off the pain. Michael said he had already prayed and was just waiting for his blessing to come down. 
    • God has come to the aid of His people throughout the Bible because of their prayers. 
      • Delivering the Israelites from Egypt (Exodus 20:2) I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
      • Sending judges to bring the Israelites back to God (Judges 2:16) Then the Lord raised up judges, who saved them out of the hand of those who plundered them.
      • Sending Jesus to die for our sins (Mark 10:45) [Jesus speaking] For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.
  2. God the Son listens as the one “through whom” we pray
    • Jesus intercedes for us (Romans 8:34) Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
      • Jesus is like our trial lawyer. A lawyer is versed in the law and knows how to speak to a judge on our behalf. 
      • A lawyer wants to represent us and prove our case. (Hebrews 7:25) Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.
    • Jesus is our mediator (1 Timothy 2:5) For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
      • Other names for mediator are broker, liaison, peacemaker, umpire, referee and judge. 
      • When my boys were young, I would act as mediator when they had a conflict. My usual solution would be to hold my hand behind my back and tell them each to pick a number between one and five. The one closest to the number without going over would be the winner. The seemed to work fine until they were both teenagers. After that, if they began to argue, I would put my hand behind my back and tell them to pick a number. They were so disgusted by my treating them like little kids, they would call my efforts “lame” and it would work its self out. It didn’t really resolve the situation but it made me smile.
    • Jesus is our advocate (1 John 2:1-2) My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
      • Jesus, in the passage, becomes the one who, not only speaks for us, but also becomes our proxy. His propitiation for our sins means he is our scapegoat.
  3. God the Holy Spirit listens as the one “with whom” we pray
    • Because the Holy Spirit is with us, He there to help us (John 14:15-17) If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
      • Who was your best friend growing up? Do you remember that feeling of being so close to someone that you knew
    • The Holy Spirit helps us find the words we need when we pray (Romans 8:26) Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
      • When I was in college, I was in a three-actor, three act play. I had over 1,100 lines to memorize; as well as where I would stand and how I would react to the other two actors. One performance, on stage, I forgot my line. I froze, looked helplessly at the other two actors and said something like, “I think I left the oven on,” and went through a door of this staged apartment. There was a stage hand following with a script. They looked shocked to see as I was not supposed to be there. Said, “What’s my next line?” in a hushed panic. The other two actors where so good they made up a discussion about the weather. I came back out and declared, “The oven is fine,” and delivered my next line and the play continued. This only took place in a matter of 10 seconds but felt like an eternity. If that stage hand had not helped me find the words I needed to continue, I don’t know if I could have continued with the play. The Holy Spirit is always ready to help those Christians find their next line so they can continue their prayer.
    • The Holy Spirit is our Jiminy Cricket. In the story of Pinocchio, Jiminy Cricket was charged with helping guide the wooden boy and remind him of the how to be good. (John 14:26) But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

Today’s Takeaways

  1. We are not alone when we pray.
  2. God wants us to speak to Him through prayer.
  3. The Godhead works together to help our prayers become formed, delivered and received.

Click here to download slides from this lesson.

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