Friday: Further Study: Discipleship and Prayer

Further Study: Read Ellen G. White, A Reformatory Movement, p. 126, in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9; By Personal Efforts and Living Faith, pp. 244, 245, in Medical Ministry.studymore

He who does nothing but pray will soon cease to pray, or his prayers will become a formal routine. When men take themselves out of social life, away from the sphere of Christian duty and cross bearing; when they cease to work earnestly for the Master, who worked earnestly for them, they lose the subject matter of prayer and have no incentive to devotion. Their prayers become personal and selfish. They cannot pray in regard to the wants of humanity or the upbuilding of Christ’s kingdom, pleading for strength wherewith to work.Ellen G. White, Steps to Christ, p. 101.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why does an absence of intercessory prayer stunt the growth of the church? Conversely, how does an active intercessory prayer life stimulate disciple-making activity? What are the keys to effective intercessory prayer? How can the intercessor know what to pray about?
  2. What should members do on behalf of those for whom they pray that goes beyond their private petitions at home? How can members build relationships with the neighbors, relatives, and coworkers for whom they pray? Why should private prayers for others always be accompanied by sustained efforts to be friends with those same people?
  3. What steps should twenty-first-century Christians take to experience dynamic prayer lives? What is the relationship between successful disciple-making and the encountering of God’s divine presence through prayer? Can prayer change those prayed for without first changing those who pray for them? How might the subject matter for prayer be altered by having passion for lost souls? What impact does personal holiness and prayer have on the would-be soul-winner’s capacity for the sharing of truth?
  4. What specific things can believers do to expand their contacts with those who have not accepted Christ? What can Christians do to get beyond surface relationships with their peers so that they will know specific needs for which to pray?

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