Christ Church Free Church of England

 Marriage

     The Evangelical Connexion of the Free Church of England affirms that:

We believe and accept that the Holy Scriptures reveal all things necessary for faith and practice and salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. We, the Evangelical Connexion of the Free Church of England, continue to uphold Holy Scripture’s teaching that marriage is part of God’s creation for a lifelong relationship between a man and a woman, to the exclusion of all others. We do not recognise any other definition and/or form of marriage which is contrary to Holy Scriptures.

We do re-affirm our commitment to being obedient to the Holy Scriptures and continue to love our neighbour and pray for those who fail the test for biblical morals as found in the Holy Scriptures. We continue to commit ourselves to warmly inviting people to repent and believe the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 2237-39; 1 Corinthians 69-11) and we do pledge to seek the well-being of the community and country God has placed us in.”

 

 

Gospel

The Greek word euagellion occurs 70 times in the Greek New Testament, and the translators working on the King James Bible over 400 years ago, translated it into English using the Anglo-Saxon word godspell meaning “good message” or “good news,” which in modern useage is rendered “gospel.”

 

It is indeed “good news,” or “news which brings joy,” and there is no greater message to be heard than the Gospel, it is the best news a human being can hear, or will ever hear.

 

The Bible teaches, and Christians believe that we have a massive problem, it teaches that our first parents, Adam and Eve rebelled against God’s instructions, that is, they sinned, their rebellion resulting in death entering the world, and “cut from the same cloth” as Adam and Eve as we are, we’re sinners facing death and unable by our own efforts to escape it, but the heart of the gospel is that God has done something about it, offering His “rescue plan” to all those who will accept it.

 

The primary source of reliable information about Jesus Christ are the New Testament documents, and in them we read that the only name God has given to us to avail ourselves of His rescue plan is Jesus Christ, the Bible saying that God is holy and He is just, and we’re not, and at the end of our lives, we’re going to stand before a just and holy God who will pass judgement on us, and we’ll be judged, either on the basis of our own moral purity – or lack of it – or the moral purity of another. The good news of the Gospel is that Jesus lived a life of perfect moral purity, of perfect obedience to God, not for His own wellbeing but for rebellious  people like us, doing for us what we couldn’t possibly do for ourselves, He lived a life of perfect obedience to God, and offered Himself as a perfect sacrifice on the Cross to satisfy the justice and the absolute moral purity of God.

 

Jesus Christ is called the Saviour, and we need to know what He saves us from. The gospel is God’s most important message to us, telling us we can have absolute confidence of being saved from His judgement on our rebellion against Him, and when we accept Jesus Christ as our all-sufficient Saviour from the consequences of our rebellion against God, we can be absolutely sure and certain of what the judgement will be when we stand before Him on Judgement Day, it will be innocent, and we will be given brand new bodies, bodies made for us by God Himself, bodies that never experience pain, disease or death, bodies that live with Him for ever.

 

There are only two places where we can spend eternity, and God has done everything necessary to ensure we can spend it with Him in heaven, rather than away from Him in the appalling place called Hell.

 

We all have a choice to make, please let us choose life in Jesus’ Name.

 

Getting the Gospel Out

 

First off, it’s important to recognise and emphasise the damage done by the widespread mindset in the church, that evangelism is something only done on sporadic forays by itinerating evangelists, something done for us, rather than evangelism being done continuously by Christians where they live, work and worship; what detachment from the Great Commission this has resulted in, and what apathy to personal evangelism and witness it has produced.

 

Church leaders and leadership teams have many responsibilities and calls on their time, but should always be looking for evangelists, praying to receive them and their gifting, with the recognition of children’s/young people’s evangelists being of especial importance, so vital to arrest the loss of young people in their teens, and through prayerful support of the evangelists, by speaking words of support to them and by enthusiastically allowing openings for their ministry, will thus enable and encourage them in the development of their gifting, and by making space in church meetings, enable them to edify the whole church, by saying what God has been doing through them, as well as keeping the church informed of their needs and opportunities.

 

The support of the whole church is needed, most importantly, their ongoing prayers are vital, supplemented as required, by very specific, targeted prayers for particular individuals, situations and missions.  Enthusiastic evangelists, so supported by their church family, can be fun to be around, and their enthusiasm can be contagious, helping to make the church membership more evangelistic, with the recognised and established evangelist(s) giving ‘on-the-job’ training to up-and-coming evangelists, thus helping to develop and sharpen their gifting.

 

Whilst not everyone is gifted as an evangelist, evangelism is not only for evangelists but involves the whole church, because all are witnesses to what change Jesus has made in their lives, and can affirm the words of “Since Jesus Came Into My Heart,” and give that witness to others.

 

21st.century Britain is increasingly distanced from Christianity, with very little knowledge of the Christian faith, a post-Christian context in fact, hence the journey to faith will take longer, coming to Christ being a gradual process for most, not a single event.

Personal or friendship evangelism has become the preferred means of evangelism, with surveys showing the majority of those coming to Christ in recent times do so because of a Christian friend, which explains why “process evangelism” using courses such as Alpha, Christianity explored and Emmaus etc. have been so successful, and necessary, it being, estimated that during the 1990’s, a million people took part in process evangelism courses.

 

Surprising opportunities for evangelism will occur when we “go where the people are,” and encounter the panoply of religious ideas making up 21st.century Britain, which is one of the greatest missiological opportunities of recent times, and because it’s easy to miss something we’re not expecting or prepared for, we must be alert and prepared to respond, with the most important thing that Christians need to do is to be prayerful – so they may recognise God’s surprising opportunities when they come.

 

To interact creatively with not-yet Christians, we need to be well-informed about “their world,” the world of local, national and international news, the world of entertainment and sport.

 

To make good bridges, requires us to be “in the world and not of the world,” and to keep abreast of current affairs, popular music and film etc. is very important, because so much of it has moral issues which give opportunities to present the gospel, recognising that some of what we experience in seeking to be well-informed about ‘the world,’ may be distasteful and offensive, so if we’re to be “clean people prepared to get our hands dirty,” we need to be in prayer, aware and confident that whilst we may get dirty on the outside, God will keep us clean on the inside.

 

And finally, it’s not rocket science is it? that without new members replacing those “gone to glory,” the church will wither away and die, but let’s not just think of maintaining our numbers, let’s think of and seek for real, large-scale numerical growth, let’s dare to believe our church(es) can be full to overflowing with those brought alive by the good, good news of the gospel, those who will then go on to tell others the good news, who will then go on to ………………….  

 

Prepared by Barry Holroyd, Christ Church, Crossgates, Leeds. 03.09.2014

Creation: Believe It Or Not

Available online at: http://www.gty.org

 What is the prayer of faith?

Lessons we can learn from the word of faith movement – i.e. If you believe you receive teaching – which is largely viewed as health, wealth & prosperity rather than spiritual well being or maturity.

Txt: Luke 18:10                                                                  Convocation 2014.

 Introduction.

 According to  John MacArthur, pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California who has wrestled with the Charismatic movement most of his ministry, the prosperity gospel or “Word of Faith movement” is the face of Christianity on popular “Christian TV”. He estimates that there are half a billion professed Charismatics in the world, cf 1 billion RCC & 14 million Mormons. Not that all Charismatics fall into the Word of faith camp.

 It is sometimes called the Rhema movement – popular in South Africa - supposedly referring to the spoken, creative, command word rather than just words spoken to convey thoughts and ideas in a purely passive or conceptual sense. Though the Greek lexicons don’t support the idea that there is any distinction between RHEMA & LOGOS - they are used interchangeably in the bible. RHEMA is not always a spoken, command word and LOGOS is not always just a written, purely thought or idea word.

True to say the Word of Faith movement is certainly evident in vast swathes of Charismatic & even Pentecostal churches and creeping in to churches near you. What are the Marks?: Prayer becoming commanding. Confident claims as to what God is supposed to have done or about to do – often based on subjective impressions dreams and visions. The idea that God has a rosey plan ahead for all without any mention of a need to repent or bow the knee to King Jesus. Unqualified GOD LOVES YOU message without any mention of the primary effect of experiencing that love being to receive forgiveness evidenced by changed lives.

 If we haven’t been accused yet of having no faith in our churches we soon will be. Give thanks if we haven’t if what an accuser means by “faith” is this name it and claim it “faith” evidenced by fantastic claims and wierd manifestations and vast crowds of curiosity seekers with very little evidence of changed lives. But do go on to assure a critic that you have absolute faith in the God who changes lives, though long to see Him do so far more.

In the UK the faith movement is not nearly as bazaar as in USA & Africa – we haven’t come across it distorting & denying the gospel & Christ of the gospel as blatantly as in the USA Faith movement. Few claim bazaar manifestations like falling over and laughing and barking as in the States & Africa. Few are lining their own pockets as they do in the States – eg The Copelands are reputed to own private jets to whiz them around. An RSA prosperity teacher on ITV Panorama recently was reported to be spending R3000 (£300 p.w on clothes!) Here it’s not so blatantly a money making racket but nonetheless appeal is being made to material, physical needs of folk and families at the expense of – sometimes to the complete exclusion of - the need for forgiveness, holiness and spiritual well being. But the UK like Africa tends to follow the extremes of USA. So we need to be on our guard. 

This paper is a call to not to be intimidated on the basis that we can be assured if God is truly blessing anything we are doing in the church today, we can have every expectation and confidence that He will bless and use his word to do whatever he has planned from all eternity. Even if he withholds that blessing, which is his prerogative – our careful, prayerful, consistent and persistent gospel proclamation to secure men and women’s eternal spiritual well being MUST NEVER be substituted for some this-worldly, short lived wall papering over of a few temporal, physical or material cracks – as great and important as these may seem to us.

 Let’s make no mistake - the Faith movement has crept in at the expense of and to try and fill the gap left by a dearth of genuine faith in Christ as Saviour & Lord evidenced by hunger and thirst after true holiness and growing likeness to Christ. i.e. It seeks to evidence the power of the gospel in material, physical well being rather than spiritual growth & maturity. 

Result: sin, repentance, judgement & holiness are played down or ignored altogether. God’s sovereignty convicting of sin, opening blind eyes and leading sinners into a saving relationship with a life changing experience of the risen Lord Jesus Christ as the unique God-man as Saviour and Lord is denied or ignored. 

Popular speakers like Ken & Jenny Copeland, Jesse du Plantis - Founder of JDM Ministries in L.A.  Richard Howard Brown from RSA of Toronto blessing notoriety, Benny Hinn – are some names in the Western branch of the movement. Names in the Eastern branch are Yongi Cho & before him Watchman Nee of the faith mountain notoriety who popularized the visualization ideas – i.e. "becoming pregnant" with God’s will for you and yours as a means to these things coming about. The latter is from an Eastern mystical background less crassly materialistic but nonetheless viewing faith as a mystical, magic formula, secretly imparted to saints to command into existence what is perceived to be God’s will in a demanding “Thus saith the Lord” kind of way,  so that saints don’t so much pray and seek God’s will to be carried out in God’s way and in his time – rather they command it into existence and expect immediate answers. 

View this clip from Shai Linne a group associated with the ministry of John Piper in the States, protesting against and warning the third world countries against false teachers of this ilk.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJmcEAwazD0 

We need to clarify what faith is and how it works lest we get ourselves into all kinds of mind wars and unhelpful discussions about faith. Or worse throw it away all together in disgust - as very sadly & tragically many have done who cannot continue the charade of playing the mind games of the health & wealth "faith" preachers.

 1)   Faith exempts. 

Some are exempted from being able to exercise genuine faith. The nature of faith is to have some confidence in the one in whom we place our faith. This in turn demands some knowledge of and even relationship with the one in whom we have faith.

 In Luke 18 vs 9-14 & vss 18 – 23 the Tax collector and the Pharisee at prayer & the Rich young ruler seeking salvation indicate this very clearly. Also, by the way, it firmly establishes up front the absolute priority of the spiritual when it comes to whether or not we can exercise faith at all - let alone its effectiveness.  The issue here – and point of the whole parable -  is vs 9.

 ALSO HE SPOKE THIS PARABLE TO SOME WHO TRUSTED IN THEMSELVES THAT THEY WERE RIGHTEOUS, AND DESPISED OTHERS:

 A while ago an intruder broke into Buckingham palace. He must have manifested all the things we associate with effective prayer – getting what you ask for in prayer - to pull off such a venture: incredible confidence, careful planning, and diligent execution etc etc but the intruder didn’t get whatever it was he wanted. Why? He went about it in a way that is not the way to get things from the palace. The Queen is not likely to take up your cause when you come that way. She may do but she's not likely to and we wouldn’t expect her to. 

Just as there is a right way to approach the Queen if you want her personal intervention on your behalf – so there is a right way to approach the Lord if you want to receive from him. 

This Pharisee prayed as if he had the right to approach God based on his own righteousness. Vs 11. To whom do we end up praying if we pray as the Pharisee prayed?  Cf vs 11

        THE PHARISEE STOOD AND PRAYED THUS WITH HIMSELF...

 We can expect such prayer to bounce off the ceiling. Not that the Lord cannot hear – he will not hear. At least there is no guarantee that such prayer will be answered. (But for common grace and mercy.) 

It is oblivious to the sin barrier. The Tax Collector by contrast is acutely aware he was a sinner. He prayed a real prayer that God could answer because it met with God where he was at in his relationship with him. Apparently yet unforgiven. 

                   ‘GOD, BE MERCIFUL TO ME A SINNER!’ 

NO is the safe answer to anyone who asks: “Can an unbeliever get answers to his prayers?” This is a safer answer because it's better not to raise expectations too high for an unbeliever. 

It’s like the question: Will a philanthropist help a stranger or beggar? Of course he may. Will he help his own child? Yes of course. So God guarantees here to answer the prayers of his child that he cannot so freely answer for those not yet his children.

 That’s what calling on God in the name of Jesus means. As His sons and daughters – not just his creatures - as noble as that is. This means the sin barrier has been removed. It means we are in the family. A sinner’s prayer of confession in order to seek forgiveness and reconciliation is the first real prayer anyone can pray. It is the key to all other prayer being effective. Now we can truly say “God loves me!” – I am his child.

 Note this prioritizes spiritual need! Not that material, physical needs have no place...

 cf John 16:23-27

Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you. Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. 

“These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; but the time is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figurative language, but I will tell you plainly about the Father. 

“In that day you will ask in my name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the father for you; “For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me, and have believed that I came forth from God.”

Note how Jesus is basing effective asking on our relationship with him & his Father.

If the false teachers of the Faith movement are getting the answers they claim they do to their so called "prayers of faith" – which is debateable – whilst they still have false views of Christ, no sense of sin & hence need for repentance as a first condition for a life of true faith – we have to ask, where are the answers to their “prayers” coming from? Answers - especially tangible, physical, material answers are no guarantee that God is at work per se. Cf Jesus’ warning on this... 

"For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. [Mat 24:24 NKJV] 

2)   Faith is essential.

 

As with many deviations from faith not all are outright error – the faith movement has fastened onto precious truth concerning the necessity and effectiveness of faith in all believers’ lives – viz: there is no limit to what genuine faith can and will yet accomplish. There’s no indication however in scripture how much faith is needed to accomplish God’s will in our lives – except the barest minimum – faith like a mustard seed. (Math 17:20)

 We can argue also that God can limit himself to the faith of believers to a degree. We could say the more we believe and trust God is willing and able to do, the more likely he is to do it or more accurately, maybe we should say – use us to accomplish what he has already planned to do. 

Faith is the key that unlocks the will of God. God quite often (not always, thankfully) only does what we confidently ask him to do. Not that we impose this restriction on him – it is something he has bound himself to for his own inscrutable reasons – probably to ensure we have a part to play and a very important part too - it is not just a gesture. 

Certainly it sounds like it in these verses where Jesus is up against lack of faith...and the limiting effect such lack has on what folk expect God to do for people. 

[Mat 13:58 NIV] And he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.

[Mar 6:6 NIV] He was amazed at their lack of faith.

[Mar 16:14 NIV] Later Jesus appeared to the eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.

He said to them, "Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?" [Mar 4:40 ESV]

 However prayer is not some psycho, mystical tool we use to make things happen almost regardless of who or what the object of our faith is or what it is we want. Such an arbitrary, wild definition of faith is obviously way off what the Bible means by faith. 

In fact answers to prayers uttered in genuine faith – we need to now go on to define - will always be way beyond anything we could possibly think of or imagine. 

Reformed folk are not against faith or diminishing genuine faith and its vital role. They heartily concur with

Heb 11:6 

But without faith [it is] impossible to please [him], for he who comes to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him. 

Cf Eph 3:20 

...now to him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us...

Whoever puts his trust in Lord will never be put to shame. Cf James 5 vs 16 (end) 

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. 

3)   Faith is informed.

      Advertising aims to inculcate a sense of dissatisfaction. The sense we are owed a better deal. “You’re worth it!”

 God is primarily concerned with our spiritual well being – our relationship with him and each other. Our progress in holiness . Man is concerned with outward circumstances & well being - particularly his own. 

The Principle of the Bulawayo Bible College in Zimbabwe, Dr Victor Nakah, challenged an audience at a conference in this way – He made the statement that all were praying for the situation in Zimbabwe to improve materially and politically etc. Then he startled the group by saying he’s not convinced that God is that bothered – if he was surely he would have changed it by now. Then he concluded by saying God is more concerned with Zimbabweans response to the situation spiritually. 

cf Paul’s prayer for Ephesians. No mention is made of their physical needs which he warns the elders on the beech will turn very nasty. No mention is made of his own physical needs as he writes from prison. All he mentions in prayer for them and himself are about their inner man. 

Jesus in the church discipline passage in Math 18 also makes a direct connection between our faith and what we receive but expresses what other scriptures like Heb 11:1 & the Math scriptures above assume. (Mth 18:18 – 19) 

"Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.

"Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by my Father who is in heaven.” 

i.e. Faith comes from hearing & believing the word of God. It’s not a blank cheque to ask God for things it is not his will to grant. Jesus in John 15:7 also spells out this vital condition for true faith. 

If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

 On the basis that the more we start getting our thoughts into line with God’s thoughts and our ways his ways the more likely we are to ask for those things that he has already planned to give. 

Conversely the further away we are from God’s word and will the more our prayers are going to be out of line with what God has planned and wills to do. It’s not then that we have weak faith or strong faith we don’t actually have faith at all – we have presumption or faith in our faith more than in the God who is the Giver of all good things. 

You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. (James 4:3)

 True faith in the sense of a faith that receives answers from God is just that - faith in God - meaning a trust in him whatever he wants to give OR NOT give – content with YES, NO OR WAIT. Nothing more. Nothing less. Not only what God intends but how he intends to give it. 

After all is that not what faith expressed in prayer wants? – THY WILL TO BE DONE ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN. 

So whatever I’m praying for unless he has given me direct, clear revelation as to what the answer might be, IT IS not a negation of faith to end the prayer with: AMEN. Meaning “Let it be according to your will (implied).” Amen is based on the Greek verb “to be” or “let it be”!

 What do we want to be? – God’s perfect will – perfect for us and most glorifying for him. Nothing more – nothing less. 

4)   Faith is expectant. Lk 18 vs 1-8

     Faith & hope are often bed fellows in scripture especially in Paul’s writings. We may say of the expectations faith may inspire what Paul’s says of                      hope ; WHO HOPES FOR WHAT THEY ALREADY HAVE. (Rom 8:24) 

The persistent widow and unsympathetic, godless judge parable in Lk 18 graphically display this important aspect of faith. 

The parable pictures the most adverse scenario in which to imagine a plea for help might work. Yet it does even here! Why? Because of persistence and perseverance. And if here then how much more so with God where the exact opposite scenario prevails for a child of God coming to his heavenly Father. 

i.e. The parable is not intended to suggest this is what praying to God is like. It’s a parable that teaches by contrast. 

It assures the child of God, because his or her relationship with God is not anything like the poor, defenceless widow (cf first point above), his or her prayers will be answered - but in God’s good time. In his way. Genuine faith respects God’s timetable. 

Certainly delay is not a denial of faith or of the effectiveness of prayer. Because nothing happens when I command this or that to happen do I have no faith! Who am I to imagine I know best when and how prayers ought to be answered or even if!! 

This principle is illustrated in the Psalms again and again. Eg Ps 34 speaks of God always coming to the rescue of the saints. 

I sought the lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

They looked unto him, and were lightened: and their faces were not ashamed.

This poor man cried, and the Lord heard [him], and saved him out of all his troubles.

 This psalm has a prophetic element in that it goes on to speak of the bones of his loved ones not being broken. (vs 20) - ultimately a clear reference to Jesus fulfilling this promise not having his legs broken on the cross because he had already died when the soldiers came to him. (John 19vs33) But we may well think, his was small comfort considering everything else that happened to Jesus and it only being fulfilled after he had died anyway! 

So it is that this and many such like promises made to the children of God are nonetheless a glimmer of light – a  foretaste of the glorious full deliverance to come on Easter Sunday morning.  So all the expectations of deliverance sought by faith are but partial and sometimes even temporary. (eg Lazarus who though even raised from the dead, died again.) Even the great promises in the psalms, many fulfilled in Jesus' own experience, are only a foretaste of the great final promise of total and permanent deliverance from all sin and its conseuqneces - even death itself. Even Jesus himself suffered a delay in his plea to be delivered from the horrors of the cross - (Hebrews 5vs7) - for the very good reason that he first had to suffer the penalty for our sins that we may be redeemed - no less!!. Healing is in the atonement – full deliverance is coming – your faith is assured of success BUT not necessarily in this life or even if it is in this life – when we expect it or would like it. 

Why does he make us wait? The parable assumes the request is for something according to God’s will. The widow is after all pleading for justice. Jesus assumes she is not praying for something contrary to God’s will. Maybe delays are to exercise us in our faith. To test how sincere and earnest we are. Maybe we are not ready for what it is we are asking for. Maybe other things need to be put in place first. Maybe it gives opportunity to clear away wrong conclusions we might draw – eg that God is like this insensitive, harsh judge. (Jesus hints at this as being the possible cause for the delay in that the widow is up against this judge who is obviously intended to represent some people's wrong view of God and what praying to God is like) – Delays in answers to prayers give space for God to expose our wrong views of God to our own hearts. (Cf How we wait to respond to a young child if they treat us with disrespect or take it for granted we’re there for their convenience.) 

Considering Ps 34 again – imagine if the Lord had delivered Jesus fully before the crucifixion? The very evident timing and the extent to which he was delivered at each stage of his ordeal on the cross was crucial to the effectiveness of the plan of salvation worked out there.

 But our assurance is - the answer was on its way. Cf parable Lk 18 vs 8 

“I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. (Better than NIV which translates "quickly" – which would be contrary to the whole point of the parable.) 

Note also the sad comment at the end of the parable.... 

Nevertheless, when the Son of man comes, will he really find faith on the earth?”

 Certainly not in the word of faith movement! This suggests the persistence called for in the parable is one of the ways in which the genuineness of faith may be tested – a test many fail in our instant, materialistic world. Contra the “Steak on plate that won’t wait” concept of the Kingdom. Contra faith just being exercised for physical, material well being, as if that’s the priority for God. 

It hints at the ultimate answers to all prayers only being when Jesus comes. The Kingdom now vs Kingdom to come tension. Is there healing in the atonement? Yes of course there is. When? Maybe now. Definitely then! 

Conclusion.

 A grasp of a biblical prayer of faith calls for the sky’s the limit confidence in genuine faith. This will be evidenced by patience, a sense of belonging and trust in the person who we ask things of & our seeking only those things he most wants to give anyway.   But another mark of this is that it is not the desperate, demanding, commanding, and convincing-oneself-against-all-evidence type of faith evidenced in the prosperity gospel. 

Such prayer is quietly confident. Full of expectation but content to let God be God as and when he is ready. 

It will restore our confidence in the God ordained means of accomplishing all that is promised to men and women of faith and if answers are not immediate or as we expect - we trust him with that too – we refuse to substitute the God ordained means of grace with our gimmicks or manipulation techniques - whether attempting to manipulate people or even God himself. 

Jesus adds an aspect to the prayer of faith that pinpoints its ultimate purpose. (John 15:16)

“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you.”

Prepared by Rev Grahame Wray.

 

See also our denominational web site for other papers on current issues facing the church at : www.ec-fce.org.uk