Wholly Devoted to Prayer, the Word, and Propagating the Good News
[Joe Oden, a prominent prophetic evangelist, shares his thoughts with us today on what is going on as we come into this new era.]
“We are certainly in interesting days. As we began to pass through Passover, as everyone has agreed was a very unique time, I began to seek the Lord for what’s going on. The Lord took me to pre-Pentecost in His Word in Acts, chapter 1. The first thing Luke says about the apostles is that they devoted themselves to prayer. It is interesting to note that out of every way their lives could have been summarized, out of every activity that this observer could have given, it was prayer that was notable. So, the primary activity of the apostles before Pentecost was prayer. As a result of their prayer movement, the supernatural power of God was poured out.
“In Acts, chapter 2:42, once again we see Luke bringing us back to that first summarization of the apostles, as he discussed the early Church, saying, ‘They devoted themselves to prayer and the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowshipping together.’ There are really three cords – prayer, proclamation, and unity that we are seeing beginning to take place. It is not solely a prayer movement or solely a proclamation movement or solely a movement of unity, but all three of these are merging together for harvest.
In Acts 3:1, Peter is praying and sees a major demonstration of power. 2000 people are born again. So, we clearly see prayer connected to the proclamation of the Gospel that manifests great signs and wonders.
In Acts 6, the first problems begin to take place in the Church. The apostles are devoted in that place of prayer, but now they have to turn aside from prayer and the study of the Word to help in practical ways—in this case with the needs of the widows. This is necessary, but the apostles are soon neglecting prayer and the Word. So, in Acts 6:4, Peter made it clear that they had to devote themselves to prayer and the proclamation of the Gospel. This is where Stephen, Philip, and five others are appointed as deacons and the practical needs were met. We see at that moment laity begin to move into leadership. Stephen emerges and Philip emerges. They moved in supernatural signs and wonders in their administrative duties. Before this, only the apostles moved in that anointing and power. However, through the decision of the leaders determining they must continue to devote themselves to prayer, study of the Word, and proclamation of the Gospel, we see multiplication of the power of God to other Believers. We need to stop strategizing until we have started praying and seeking the Lord on what to do.”
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common.” (Acts 2:42-44; NIV)
Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:
- Read Acts 1 and note what the apostles were doing.
- Read Acts 2 and note what the apostles were doing.
- Read Acts 3 and notice the results of the apostle’s activities.
- Are you convinced that these must be days of prayer and proclamation of the Gospel?
- Recommit yourself to prayer, study of the Word, and proclamation of the Gospel.
- Declare, “Let the Church return to a place of intimacy with the Lord, praying and learning of Him. Let us make Him known, even as we have come to know Him! Let the harvest be reaped with signs, wonders, and miracles!”
A prayer you can pray:
[First, read Acts chapters 1 through 3. You might be so smitten you go on through 4 or more! Rededicate your life to the basic activities of the Christian life—prayer, reading the Bible and telling people about Jesus. Expect that a change will be effected in and through your life.]
Lord, in these extraordinary days, where it appears You are taking us back to go forward, solidify in me a passion for prayer and the Word. I want to know You to make You known. Even though I may have many things to do in a day, even Stephen and Philip and other laity were endowed with an anointing for the miraculous. Stephen was even stoned for his words and actions!
Lord, I am asking You to bring the Church back to a place of intimacy with the You, praying and learning of Jesus. Let us make You known, even as we have come to know You! Let the harvest be reaped with signs, wonders, and miracles! Change something in us and let us never be the same after today in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Prayer and proclamation of the Gospel will lead to miracles and a multiplied harvest of souls!
Learn more about Joe Oden here.