God’s gracious gift of prayer

Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church, Singapore

Professor.  Russell Dykstra 19th August 2018

Prayer is a privilege and a lifelong blessing!

Luke 11:1-13  Heidelberg Cat. L.D.45

A vital and precious NEED, INDISPENSIBLE

Covenant fellowship (communion), worship and expression of thankfulness.

  • We must know him, ask according to the model prayer and for what is needed.
  • We are dependent creatures with material and spiritual needs (grace/Spirit/our calling/life’s hardships).
  • We are sinners needing forgiveness and cleansing.
  • It is hard because it is SPIRITUAL and we are EARTHLY!
  • We shall be heard.

Contrary to what RD says it may contain apparent trivia (God is interested in the minutiae of life) and be spontaneous, informal and just by “shooting” a thought to heaven (Nehemiah 2:4).

CERC Message

The Word

A light to give direction in life and enlightenment about God and his ways

A hammer to break down hard hearts and opposition to God

A sword to pierce hearts, to excise sin and the superfluous tissues (issues of life)

Pasture to spiritually feed all God’s flock

Water to quench the thirst of those seeking righteousness

Fire to burn away dross and sin in our lives

Are you reading it methodically?

See Bible Reading Plan post. Link

Psalm 57

Psalms 57

v2 I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me. Similar to Psalm 138:8 which says “God will perfect that which concerns me” and Romans 8:28, “All things work together for good….”. Our sovereign covenant God is doing all that is needful in our lives and giving all that is needful to live for him faithfully.( Romans 8:32, Phil.4:19)

John Gill says, v 8  Awake up, my glory
Meaning his soul, it being the most honourable, glorious, and excellent part of man; is the breath of God, of his immediate production; is a spirit incorporeal and immortal; is possessed of glorious powers and faculties; had the image of God stamped upon it, which made man the glory of God, ( 1 Corinthians 11:7 ) ; and has the image of Christ on it in regenerated persons; and is that with which God and Christ are glorified; and is, upon all accounts, of great worth and value, even of more worth than the whole world: and this sometimes in the saints is as it were asleep, and needs awaking; not in a literal sense; for it is incapable of natural sleep, being incorporeal; but in a figurative and spiritual sense, as when grace is dormant, and not in exercise; when the soul is backward to and slothful in duty, unconcerned about divine things, and lukewarm and indifferent to them; which is occasioned by prevailing corruptions and worldly cares; and sometimes it becomes dull, and heavy, and inactive, through an over pressure by sorrows and troubles, as the disciples of Christ were found sleeping for sorrow, ( Luke 22:45 ) ; which seems to have been the case of the psalmist here; he had been in great distress, his soul was bowed down, ( Psalms 57:6 ) ; he had hung his harp upon the willow, and could not sing one of the Lord’s songs in the place and circumstances he was in; but now he calls upon his soul, and arouses all the powers and faculties of it, and stirs up himself to the work of praise, just as Deborah did, ( Judges 5:12 ) ; some by his glory understand his tongue, as in ( Psalms 16:9 ) compared with ( Acts 2:26 ) ( Psalms 30:12) ; and so may design vocal singing here, as instrumental music in the next clause:

Prayer for the beginning of the day

” Cause me to hear thy loving-kindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.” Psalm 143:8

Lovely and key message why we need to seek God’s face first thing in the morning.

David couldn’t start a new day without hearing of God’s loving-kindness and grace. This is the position of every repentant sinner (believer). This habit enables the killing of sin, service of God and the blessing of others, directing us into holiness.

Rev. Carl Haak

Sermon on Psalm 143:8


The daily offerings (Exodus 29:38) of two lambs and of incense burnt (Exodus 30:7) are Old Testament types pointing clearly to the need of every believer devoting themselves to God daily by taking time with him in the word and prayer (Bible time, quiet time etc). It was said of Moses, “And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend ” (Exodus 3:11). That is our privilege even more-so (Heb.4:16). David was accustomed to more (Psalm 55:17). No reason we shouldn’t pray continually but we do need to set aside time to pray and read Scripture or listen to it being preached. A complete Bible reading plan helps.



Respect for the Word of God

ALL Scripture is inspired by God. ALL Scripture needs to be obeyed.

Young Calvinists

Many people today claim to love the Word of God. They talk about the beauty of the Bible, especially its poetry and rhythmic flow. Many of these same people, however treat it as irrelevant, in much the same way that we would treat a magazine of the 1970s.  In other words, they treat it with contempt while still claiming to love it. When it comes to such issues as women in office, homosexuality, or premarital sex we often hear something like this: “The Bible might have said that back in Paul’s day but we live in a different era now, so those rules don’t apply anymore.”  Still others cherry-pick which parts of the Bible they will adhere to. Doing that is nothing new. Thomas Jefferson is well known for going through the Bible with knife and cutting out the miracles and other parts of Scripture that he didn’t believe in…

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Thy way is in the sanctuary, thy way is in the sea.

Psalm 77:13, 19.

13 Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: who is so great a God as our God?

19 Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known.
Can we synthesize these two verses? Deuteronomy 29:29, “ The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.”

Who God is and what he does is revealed in his word and understood in his sanctuary—the instituted true church where the whole counsel of God is preached and taught. But having said this, much of his providential dealings in history and in the lives of his children is hidden “in the sea”—unknown or barely discernible like the tangled back of a tapestry, which is all that we see, instead of the beautiful finished work which is on the other side, planned and known  by the artist, God himself.