“Prayer: In the Face of Opposition” Sunday, 25 September 2022 10:00 a.m.
We are continuing our series called: “The Potential of Prayer.” There is so much untapped power and potential that is at our disposal through the means of prayer. We have talked about the conflict in prayer; the posture of prayer and the persistence of prayer.
Last Sunday we talked about the prayer of faith that James speaks of in James ch.5. This Sunday I want to talk about how to pray in the face of demonic opposition.
My text is 2 Kings 18 & 19, the time of our story is around 722 BC when Assyria had conquered Israel, the northern kingdom. Sennacherib is the king of Assyria, and about 15 years later during the reign of Hezekiah he is gunning for the southern kingdom, Judah. Assyria wants to take over the entire world and Sennacherib, and his conquering commanders are a type of the devil who is never content, who is always on the prowl looking to conquer, looking to intimidate, looking to threaten someone so that he can dominate that person so that he can control them. That's what the enemy does in our lives through threats and intimidation.
The commander of the army of Assyria is Rabshakah…He is the chief of the princes of the country of Assyria. It's interesting to note that the devil is called the prince of the power of the air and this man is a type of Satan in the way that he threatens and intimidates the people of God. The Bible says that Rabshakah plants himself outside the gates and shouts at the people who were on the city walls. He is well skilled at intimidating and manipulating. He doesn't want to waste the resources, men and other things and go to war when he can negotiate a surrender through a show of power. Ultimately what he wants to do is break the people's confidence in God. What is his modus operandi to intimidate the people of God?
2 Kings 18:19 Then the Assyrian king’s chief of staff told them to give this message to Hezekiah: “This is what the great king of Assyria says: What are you trusting in that makes you so confident?
There are several ways in which Rabshakah is going to intimidate the people of God in order to destroy their confidence in God: by mocking their strength, by casting doubt on their relationships, by claiming that he is acting on behalf of God, and by trying to destroy Judah’s faith in their king: Hezekiah.
Ultimately, King Hezekiah of Judah receives the threatening letter and “spreads it out” before God. That word “to spread out” actually means to break apart; to open your hands that have been wringing in anxiety and to say, ” Lord, I need you in this situation!” And when Hezekiah places his full dependence upon God, God responds and His angel puts 185,000 Assyrians to the sword. Isaiah 59:19 So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun; When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him.
Join us in person on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. or via livestream by going to https://www.firstbaptistsudbury.com and clicking on livestream for “Prayer: In the Face of Opposition.”