Sunday, January 1, 2012

Sermon Notes from 1.1.12: New Year's Day Sermon

Here are my sermon notes from Sunday, 1.1.12.  I typically preach on prayer on the Sunday following Christmas and this year was no exception.  You can find these notes in PDF and the sermon audio on our church's website (  You can also download the audio via our podcast on iTunes.

Prayer 2011
Luke 18.1-14
Persistent Prayer
    • The judge had authority but was unwise, unkind, and unjust.
    • It was the widow’s persistence that won her case.
    • Jesus’ point:  if someone who isn’t inclined is won by persistence, someone who is inclined certainly will be won too.
God is wise (Romans 11.33).
God is kind (Psalm 145.17).
God is just (Psalm 145.17).
God is near (Psalm 145.18)

Another place where His wisdom, kindness, justice, and nearness join together:  the cross (Romans 3.25-26).

Jesus’ Question:  Will I find faith on the earth?
    • He’ll return looking for persevering faith, especially the kind that persists in prayer (v.1).
Textual Objection:  What about heaping up empty phrases? (Matthew 6.7-8)
    • The problem isn’t with the persistence but with the attitude behind it.
    • We are not heard because of the way we pray or the fact that we pray - we are heard because God is our Father (Luke 18.9-14).
    • Prayer is not a function of the mind or mouth but of the heart.
    • Persistent prayer is also humble prayer.

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