The New Testament church – a praying church

In the book of Acts, we meet a church that is fervent in prayer (Acts 12:5). Another word to describe ‘fervent’ is earnest or constant. Jesus had given the command to wait for the promise in order His followers to be endued with power from on high. They were all with one accord in one place. That is the dream God has for every church.

As a church we have recently looked at the curse of barrenness. In last few weeks, we have become more and more aware that we must get back to giving the Holy Spirit opportunity to break the mould.

Someone has said that the reason for prayerlessness is the same reason that we don’t eat a proper diet. We read books on dieting in the hope that we will improve. We make resolutions to eat more healthily but then get distracted. So it is with prayerlessness.

They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

One of the main purposes of the baptism of the Spirit is the prayer life of the believer. In Romans 8, the chapter on the Holy Spirit, we are told the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness for we don’t know what we should pray for, nor how we should pray: “the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words”. In our very weakness He is our comforter. The word comfort comes from the Latin word, strength. He fills us with His strength to overcome our weakness.

It is the power of the Holy Spirit that works in us to produce intimacy in prayer. He produces unity when people come together to pray, and we experience His presence. No wonder in Acts 5:31 it says that when they had prayed the place was shaken. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

We face challenging times as they did in the New Testament church, and we need to be much more intentional in meeting together and being of one accord. We need to allow the Holy Spirit to break our barrenness and to empower us to be fervent in prayer – that is needed in these days.