1. Lesson One of the Book of Daniel, Introduction to the Book of Daniel

The Necessity of Prayer – Lesson XXXI, Prayer and the Word of God


“Many years ago, over a hundred,  a man was traveling in the wilds of Kentucky. He had with him a large sum of money and was well armed. He put up at a log-house one night, but was much concerned with the rough appearance of the men who came and went from this abode. He retired early but not to sleep. At midnight he heard the dogs barking furiously and the sound of someone entering the cabin. Peering through a chink in the boards of his room, he saw a stranger with a gun in his hand. Another man sat before the fire. The traveler concluded they were planning to rob him, and prepared to defend himself and his property. Presently the newcomer took down a copy of the Bible, read a chapter aloud, and then knelt down and prayed. The traveler dismissed his fears, put his revolver away and lay down, to sleep peacefully until morning light. And all because a Bible was in the cabin, and its owner a man of prayer.”                 Rev. F. F. Shoup 


What peace and what confidence the Word of God and prayer brought to the traveler. 


What their use communicated to him about the strangers! 


He heard the Bible read and heard the prayer of a man and immediately dismissed his fears. 


Could one who read the Bible and prayed be one to fear?


We let God talk to us though his word and he lets us talk to him in prayer. 


It is natural to pray after reading and studying the Bible. 


For the Word of God is THE great help in prayer.


If written in our hearts, it will outflow in prayer.


Promises of the Word of God that are lodged firmly in our heart will be the fuel that will bring life and warmth to our prayers.


For God has promised. 


I want that promise to be personal so I go to God in prayer. 


As a civil servant for the Navy I found this principle to be active. 


The Navy’s will was for such and such to take place. 


My responsibility was to ask the Navy for its support in carrying out its will for our base. 


The Navy promised, I had to make that promise personal by asking.


So the Word of God is the food, by which prayer is nourished and made strong.


Prayer, like man, cannot live by bread alone, “but by every word which proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord.”


If prayer is to be living there must be a constant supply of God’s Word.


If there is any who desires to pray well, the study of God’s word must be pre-immenent in their life.


God’s Word will tell us that there is no more important duty in the life of a Christian than prayer


No other privilege given to man is higher than prayer.


“All things, whatsoever” are received by prayer, because “all things whatsoever” are promised.


“Every one that asketh, receiveth.”


“If ye shall ask anything in My Name, I will do it.”


“Pray without ceasing;”

“continue in prayer;”

“continuing instant in prayer;”

“in everything by prayer, let your request be made known unto God;”

“pray always, pray and not faint;”

“men should pray everywhere;”

“praying always, with all prayer and supplication.”


How clear and how strong are the statements given in the Word of God!


And how they equip us with the foundation of our faith and the encouragement to pray, and to ask what you will and it shall be given unto you.


Over and over the Bible urges us to seek the God of prayer, with all our wants, and with all our burdens!


The Word of God is filled with facts, and examples, and incidents and observations that stress the importance and the absolute necessity of prayer and tells us of its power with God.


We are encouraged by the God of prayer to put Him to the test. 


He has promised but he expects us in faith to appropriate His promises. 


He expects us to make it personal.


Your life will never be what it can be until the promises of God have been tested through prayer.


Prayer makes the promises of God real and personal to the Christian.


And when real and personal look at the power that can be realized. 


Who of us, in our praying, measures up to this promise of our Lord:


John 14:12, Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do, because I go to My Father. 

This says this:  He that believeth on me, he that lives his life according to my word, he that obeys my word, and acts in obedience to my word will do greater works than these. 

When Christ becomes our all-in-all, prayer moves God to lay his treasures at our feet.  

1 John 3:22, Whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things which are pleasing in His sight.


Successful praying is always joined together with the Word of God.


Prayer is not simply to get things from God, but to make those things holy, which already have been received from Him.


It is not merely to get a blessing, but also to be able to give a blessing.


Prayer makes common things holy and secular things, sacred.


In the First Epistle to Timothy, Paul gives us these words: 

1 Tim 4:4-5, “For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving. For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.”  

God’s good gifts are to be holy, not only by God’s creative power, but, also, because they are made holy to us by prayer.


Doing God’s will, and having His Word abiding in us, is a must of effectual praying.


We know God’s will by studying His Word, by hiding it in our hearts, and by letting the Word dwell in us richly.


“The entrance of Thy word, giveth light.”


What light?  The light of knowing God’s will. 


That is what the light is for! 


God does not give light so that a man or woman can do their own will but He gives light to do His will.


To know God’s will in prayer, we must be filled with God’s Spirit, who makes intercession for the saints, and in the saints, according to the will of God.


To be filled with God’s Spirit, to be filled with God’s Word, is to know God’s will.


Edward M. Bounds in his book “The Necessity of Prayer” said this:   

It is to be put in such a frame of mind, to be found in such a state of heart, as will enable us to read and interpret aright the purposes of the Infinite. Such filling of the heart, with the Word and the Spirit, gives us an insight into the will of the Father, and enables us to rightly discern His will, and puts within us, a disposition of mind and heart to make it the guide and compass of our lives. 

Epaphras prayed that the Colossians might stand “perfect and complete in all the will of God.”


The scripture is clear.


Not only may we know the will of God, but that we may know all the will of God.


And not only may we know all the will of God, but we may do all the will of God.


And by prayer and the study of God’s word we may do all the will of God from the heart, cheerfuly, in a close and personal relation with the Lord.


Listen to what Paul said in 2 Thess. 3:1 in this regard. 


See what he believed prayer would accomplish in the doing of God’s will.


He pressed the Thessalonians to:  …….. pray for us that the Word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified.”


Prayer opens the way for the Word of God to accomplish its purpose.  


God has been gracious to us to choose us to be co-laborers with Christ and we do it through prayer.


In other words prayer opens the way for the will of God to be realized.  

David expounded and extolled the Word of God in: 

Psalm 19:7-11,  The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.  The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.  The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.  More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.  Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward. 

But how did he make the Word of God personal to him?   

He did it though prayer.  His conclusion follows: 

He wrote in Psalm 19:12-14:, “Who can understand his errors?”


And then praying in this manner: “Cleanse Thou me from secret faults. Keep back Thy servant also from presumptuous sins. Let them not have dominion over me. Let the words of my mouth, and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer.”


David knew the deep spirituality of the Word of God. 


David knew its power to search the inner nature of man.   

David knew the message of Hebrews 4:12 that tells us: 

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.


David knew these things about the Word of God but he made its power personal though prayer. 

Prayer generates a love for the Word of God, and sets people to the reading and studying of it.  

Prayer leads people to obey the Word of God, and puts into the obedient heart unspeakable joy.


Praying people and Bible-studying people are the same people.


The God of the Bible and the God of prayer are one.


God speaks to man in the Bible; man speaks to God in prayer.


A man studies the Bible to discover God’s will. 


What is God doing?  What does God want me to do? 


God made me and has every right to my worship and my service.


God is in charge and I am to do want God wants me to do. 


It’s as simple as that. 


God never forces his will on you but he wants you to do his will because the doing of his will is always the best that you can do. 


God’s will is broad and glorious. 


God’s will opens up the heavens to you. 


Your will is as narrow as your sin will permit. 


Your will will open up the pits of Hell and your will will deny you all fellowship with your Creator.


But God’s word reveals His will and reveals to me that I have to get in line with His will. 


So I pray in order that I may receive power to do God’s will.  


That is what God’s grace is for, the enabling power to do God’s will.


Bible study and praying are the marks of those who strive to know and do God’s will and therefore will please God.


Bible study generates prayer and prayer generates Bible study. 


Prayer brings the desire to fellowship with others who pray and who study the scriptures. 


Prayer moves a man or woman to desire to hear the Word of God expounded and taught. 

Prayer moves a man or woman to resolve to faithfully assemble themselves together in the house of God.   

Isn’t God’s will accomplished though the body of Christ? 


Are we not the hands and the feet, the fingers of Christ. 


Are we not that part of Christ that picks up, that walks, that talks, that works. 


So if a man or woman desires to do God’s will, prayer will give birth to a conscience that presses support of the body of Christ that meets in the local church.


Prayer generates a church loving heart, and a church supporting spirit.


It is those who pray that support the body of Christ in the local church.


It is those who pray who desire to be under the preaching of the Word. 


It is from those who pray who support the church with their influence and their money.