Mar 13 2019
God named Ishmael ‘God hears’ before he was born. Years later, God heard Ishmael’s cry when he was perishing in the wilderness and opened his mother’s eyes to see a spring of water from which she gave him drink – and he lived!
Islam claims Ishmael as a spiritual forefather. Today’s
Muslims are in the wilderness perishing and crying out for living water. Let the Church pray to the Father to reveal the well of living water, Jesus, so they might live!
Last week, I ended the GHPL on shakings in Islam concerning the origin and content of the Qur’an by saying, “It’s critical that we also are standing on the firm foundation of truth. Let’s set the Lord always before us so that we shall not be shaken (Ps 16:8). More on this later.” Remember when Jesus counselled His disciples to remove the plank (log//beam) from their own eyes in order to see clearly to remove the speck in someone else’s eye (Mt 7:1-5, Lk 6:41-42)?
We need to know the Father’s heart as we pray for others. I was reminded of that this morning while praying for refugee applicants our church has been trying for over 4 years to sponsor in order to reunite a family. I’ve been complaining about the tedious and frustrating procedures and the long delays waiting for word only to find that we have to submit something more. The instant I started to pray, the Lord convicted me that I haven’t prayed for the overworked and overwhelmed Immigration officials – I’ve only complained! I quickly repented and covered them with blessing. “God, help them to move efficiently through the mountain of paperwork, help them discern which applications are valid, help them, Lord, bless them….”
Likewise, praying for Muslims forces us to look at our own hearts. Is our focus on the place where the Lord is shining His light? If we are praying about the shaking we see re: Islamic scripture, is it possible we need to attend to removing a plank in our eye so that our prayers aren’t hypocritical and result in our shaking?
Do we know our scriptures? Do we show how highly we treasure them by reading regularly? Do we seek the full counsel of God through the old and new covenants? Do we prefer to read only paraphrases, commentaries and books that conform with our perspective? Do we ask the Holy Spirit to make scripture come alive to us? Are we confident enough in the authenticity of our scriptures that when Muslims challenge us about them, we have an answer? (Muslims are taught the Qur’an corrects our scriptures and is an exact copy of God’s original and perfect book in heaven.)
Let’s pray. “I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.” (Ps 16:7-8).
- Thank the Lord for the inestimable gift of the whole and Holy Bible, the scribes who preserved and transmitted it, the scholarship that has confirmed its authenticity and its power.
- Repent for any ways in which you haven’t treasured the treasure it is.
- Consider how you might establish a discipline of daily Bible reading, if you don’t already do this.
Pray for the coming season of the festivals of Passover, Ramadan and Pentecost that
- The Bible, the book that tells the full story of humankind’s fall and God’s redemption, will be accessed in hard copy or on the Internet by countless Muslims searching for truth;
- God’s word made flesh, Jesus, will be revealed to them in dreams and visions AND in Spirit-infused Bible scripture in their heart languages; and
- The living word, the Spirit, will confirm His written word with signs and wonders.
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