Prayer Sermon Illustrations

Prayer Sermon Illustrations

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Expectant Prayers

A beautiful little book, Expectation Corners, tells us of a king who prepared a city for some of his poor subjects. Not far from them were large storehouses, where everything they could need was supplied if they but sent in their requests. But on one condition—they should be on the outlook for the answer, so that when the king's messengers came with the answers to their petitions, they should always be found waiting and ready to receive them. The sad story is told of one desponding one who never expected to get what he asked, because he was too unworthy. One day he was taken to the king's storehouses, and there, to his amazement, he saw, with his address on them, all the packages that had been made up for him, and sent. There was the garment of praise, and the oil of joy, and the eye-salve, and so much more. They had been to his door, but found it closed. He was not on the outlook. From that time on, he learned the lesson Micah would teach us: "I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me!"—Andrew Murray.


"Why Are Not My Boys Saved?"

It was in a country place in the home of a deacon. Three children had been born to the family, two of them boys who had come to the years of accountability. The preacher who held the meeting was stopping in this home. One afternoon, when the fires of evangelism had been burning, the mother in this home said to the preacher, "Why are not my boys saved? The children of other homes are being converted by the score. My boys are interested, but I see no tears; I see no evidence of conviction. Tell me why." The preacher said, "Can you stand a little plain talk?" The mother said, "I can." Said the preacher, "Your boys are dry-eyed and unconcerned because their mother is. Did you ever take either of them aside and teach him and pray with him and for him about his salvation?" The mother answered, "Never." "Have you spent sleepless nights weeping over their lost condition?" The mother, sobbing, said, "Never." The preacher said, "The boys are unsaved because the mother has no burden for them!" That night was a momentous night in that home. Next morning, at the breakfast table, with sad and tearful face, the mother refused to eat, saying, "All night long I walked the floor and prayed for my boys. My boys," she said, "are on my heart and I cannot live unless they are saved!" Both boys that very day were born again into God's family. Said the boys, `°Mother, I heard you when you prayed for me last night, we are saved now in answer to your prayers!"—L. R. Scarborough.


Prayer at Gatherings of the Lord's People

Lord, once again assembled in Thy Name,
Whoever art and will be still the same,
Do Thou, within our midst, Thyself proclaim.

Lord, Thou hast met with us in times gone by,
Now in Thy love and glorious power draw nigh,
Grant us the hearing ear, the seeing eye.

That which we see not, do Thou teach us, Lord,
Lead us to where the honey sweet is stored,
And on each gathered be Thy blessing poured.
Break Thou Thyself, O Christ, the heavenly bread,
Appoint who shall distribute in Thy stead,
So shall the multitude be amply fed.

Give us hinds' feet that we may climb and stand
In the high places of Thy promised land;
Held ever only by Thy strong right hand.

And may we from this Mount of God descend
To meet the duties which each path attend,
Resolved to serve Thee only to the end.

None empty, Lord, but each one fully filled,
Each thirsting quenched, each eager longing stilled—
Each willing for that which Thy love bath willed.

(1 Cor. 14. 26; Matt. 18. 20; 1 Thess. 4. 9)


Arrested suns and tranquilled seas declare
To Heaven and earth th'omnipotence of prayer,
That gives the hopeless hope, the feeble might,
Outruns the swift and puts the strong to flight,
The noontide arrow foils and plague that stalks by night.—Colton

(Josh. 10. 13, 14; Ps. 91. 1-6; James 5. 17, 18)


Prayer is the golden key that can open the wicket of mercy. Prayer is the slender nerve that moves the muscles of Omnipotence.

(Luke 22. 31, 32; Col. 4. 12)


Archimedes was the great pioneer in the realm of mechanics. It was he who ran through the town of Syracuse shouting, `Eureka, Eureka' (I have found it) after he had made an important discovery. During a state of war he turned to King Hiero and said, `Give me a lever and a place to rest it, and I will move the world.'

Result: the enemy's ships were completely destroyed, and the siege lifted. Small wonder that Plutarch said, 'All other weapons lay idle and useless; his were the only offensive and defensive arms of the city.' God too has given His people a power by which they move the world: 'Prayer moves the hand that moves the universe.' Are we using that power?—Indian Christian

(Matt. 17. 21; 1 Thess. 5. 17 ;I Tim. 2. 1-3)


He was a Christian and he prayed. He asked for strength to do greater things, but he was given infirmity that he might do better things. He asked for power that he might have the praise of men: he was given weakness that he might feel the need of God.—Selected

(2 Cor. 12. 8-10)


Lord, what a change within us one short hour
Spent in Thy presence will prevail to make!
What heavy burdens from our bosom take!
What parched lands refresh as with a shower!
We kneel, and all around us seems to lower:
We rise and all the distant and the near
Stands forth in sunny outline, brave and clear.

We kneel, how weak; we rise, how full of power!
Why therefore, should we do ourselves this wrong
Or others—that we are not always strong,
That we are ever overborne with care?
That we should ever weak or heartless be,
Anxious or troubled, when with us is prayer,
And joy and strength and courage are with Thee?—R. C. Trench

(Dan. 6. 10, 11; 9. 3, 4; Acts 1. 14)

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