Luk 11:5-13 “And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth. And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?”
A friend was on a long journey and had an urgent need. He knocked on his friend’s door at midnight. This had to be urgent because it was so late. The friend didn’t have what he needed, but he went out of his way to give what he did have and get what was needed. That’s what prayer is. It’s like somebody who goes on behalf of another. Not because you’re special, but because you will not give up until you get what you need you will receive what you need.
If you know how to pray, you’ve got the ear of the One who has the bread. Don’t give up in prayer. It takes faith. ‘Because of his importunity…’ Keep asking. The ones that keep asking keep receiving. It’s the ones that keep seeking that keep finding. The devil can’t go long. He has no endurance. If you can just stick it out, Jesus will come through for you. You will overcome if you keep seeking, keep asking. I have a Friend that you can come to in the middle of the night.
If you have a need, there is One who can help.
Everybody needs two friends, a friend to call on when you have a need and a friend who you can answer that need. You need a friend who can pray for you and a Friend who can answer that prayer. You will never stumble across Jesus. You won’t make it by accident. God calls you. Somebody has been praying for you.
I have a light to shine to a dark world. I have to do what someone did for me a long time ago. We are here for a reason. We’ve been to the House of Bread (the Holy Ghost house). We need to bring the bread to others or bring them to the House of Bread.
Lot was Abraham’s nephew. Abraham had a promise that he would have as many offspring as the sand on the earth and the stars in the sky. Lot made some bad choices. Abraham had a visitation from God and two angels. God was fixing to judge that evil city, but Abraham said, ‘Wait, my nephew is there!’
Gen 18:16-19 “And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.”
Abraham was concerned for his nephew Lot. He didn’t have children yet and this man was very dear to him.
We need to learn how to talk to God on behalf of people who are lost. We’ve got to knock on the door of the One who has what people need.
Gen 18:20-22 “And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know. And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the LORD.”
The angels left and God remained. Abraham began a negotiation with God. This is PRAYER. ‘If there are only 50, will You keep from destroying the city?’ Abraham gets Him all the way down to 10 people. God heard the voice of Abraham. Everybody lives if there are only 10 righteous people. The two angels did everything they possibly could to infringe on those people’s will to save their lives, save them from judgment.
Paul didn’t have much of a choice when he was knocked down on the road. God said, ‘Either you quit going against me or I’m going to kill you.’ Paul, face to face with the One True God said, ‘What wilt thou have me do?’ Good answer!
God has a way of moving in people’s lives to act the way He wants them to act.
We can pray things into existence. His will is His will. We can pray for the salvation of others. Before You start in Your righteous judgment, somebody in my life needs to be saved.
God did not destroy the righteous with the wicked. His angels destroyed the city and grabbed their hands and pulled them away.
It’s not up to us to do something, we have to be something. We have to pray more. If Abraham can negotiate God down to 10 people for the sake of an entire city, we can pray for the soul of another. God spared Lot on behalf of a man who prayed.
Lot had a praying uncle.
Aaron had two friends, a friend and a brother. Deut 9:13-14 “Furthermore the LORD spake unto me, saying, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people: Let me alone, that I may destroy them, and blot out their name from under heaven: and I will make of thee a nation mightier and greater than they.”
This is God talking to Moses. Moses negotiated with God.
Deu 9:15-20 “So I turned and came down from the mount, and the mount burned with fire: and the two tables of the covenant were in my two hands. And I looked, and, behold, ye had sinned against the LORD your God, and had made you a molten calf: ye had turned aside quickly out of the way which the LORD had commanded you. And I took the two tables, and cast them out of my two hands, and brake them before your eyes. And I fell down before the LORD, as at the first, forty days and forty nights: I did neither eat bread, nor drink water, because of all your sins which ye sinned, in doing wickedly in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger. For I was afraid of the anger and hot displeasure, wherewith the LORD was wroth against you to destroy you. But the LORD hearkened unto me at that time also. And the LORD was very angry with Aaron to have destroyed him: and I prayed for Aaron also the same time.”
Sometimes mercy must be broken through. That’s what intercessory prayer is.
Psalm 106:23 “Therefore he said that he would destroy them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them.”
The Messiah already came on a donkey and is coming down from the clouds. He is coming to judge. We’re standing in the gap while there is still time.
Is 59:16 “And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him.”
Is 53:1 “Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?”
The only thing that will stop you is if you quit knocking, quit seeking. God has the answer, the bread. You must pray.
Excerpted from a sermon preached by: Pastor Anthony LoCascio.
If you are in the Chicagoland area, come to The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm.