THE GREAT BUSINESS OF PRAYER
Jesse M. Hendley
I want you to turn with me today to Matthew 6, verse
5, and study with me The Great Business of Prayer. I
pray that God will speak to our hearts.
As we begin with verse 5, Jesus lays down that which
is necessary before we may have answers to prayer. The
first thing He says is that we are to be genuine in
our prayers. "And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be
as the hypocrites are." We are not to be hypocrites
when we pray. "They love to pray standing in the
synagogues and on the corners of the streets that they
may be seen of men. Verily, I say unto you they have
their reward." We are to be genuine in our
The second thing is that our prayers must be secret.
It is to God that we pray, not unto men. Verse 6,
"When thou prayest enter into thy closet." You are
familiar with the idea some people have, that they can
do all their praying riding in automobiles, on the
street cars, while they are at work, and so on. Well,
Jesus didn't say so. He said, "When thou prayest enter
into thy closet." So real prayer must be genuine and
it must be secret. We must go alone with God, not with
the idea of showing off to anybody. It is a time when
our souls are naked before God. You know, what we are
before the world is one thing. What we are before wife
or husband is something else. But what we are before
God, lying bare our souls in the secret place, is
actually what we are. Prayer must be secret.
Third, it must be intelligent. Verse 7. "When you
pray, use not vain repetitions." Prayer isn't just
saying things over and over again, thinking you'll be
heard because of glib talk. Jesus says that isn't
prayer. It is not just talking. It is not just
repeating phrases. Our hearts must be in it. It must
be intelligent. God is an intelligent Being and our
prayers must be intelligent. That doesn't mean that
God doesn't hear the prayer of ...
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