” if my people who are called by my Name, will humble themselves and pray, and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin and heal their land…”. 2 Chron 7:14.
We embark on a journey that explores the depths of a discipline which most of us have the most difficulty. It seems that prayer which is only speaking to God is a mountain no one can scale, a sea no one can cross, as it seems that our own selves, the world and Lucifer fights with all his might.
It is the South Koreans who have broken through in adopting a lifestyle in which prayer is the principle daily pillar that all other activities revolve around. I read of all night prayer meetings where they pray until Dawn, then go to work. What commitment! Also I read of Prayer Mountain where fasting of 21 days with prayer is a regular occurrence.
It is evident that these prayers touch heaven and situations are resolved, and the very fact that hostilities with North Korea has been avoided through angelic responses to these prayers.
Then we also read of the Hebrides Revival in 1948 where two sisters prayed through a vision and the Scripture I have cited above birthed an understanding that God keeps His Covenants. This brought about a very powerful outpouring of the Spirit that people were convicted of sin in their homes. The Church of Scotland saw a wonderful refreshing. The barn in Barvas was the place where God’s glory came when 2 Chronicles 7:14 was understood in a personal and collective way.
It means that prayer is much more than what we say. It becomes what we are.
The comprehension of 2 Chronicles 7:14 cannot be taken out of its context. If we do that we do not enter into its manifestation.
It is the response of God to the dedication prayer of Solomon. The vision of the Temple born in David is prophesied that Solomon would build it. God would give Solomon rest.
God will bring us first into covenant rest
Covenant rest is God’s establishing in us His House, His Promise, His Provision. His Protection.
I believe that covenant is the starting point of prayer. That is what God says, “If my People” . So first we need to become God’s people.
There is no other way to become relational to God without a platform of covenant.
Genesis starts by saying that men began to call upon the Name of the Lord. We are acquainted with the Covenant Names of God. So we can surmise that if they called upon His Name they would know what name to call upon.
This means that God took an initiative to reveal Himself. If you study the Bible you will see God reveal His Name. Exodus 32 and 33 reveals that His Glory is in His Name. And in His Name is His Covenant.
Jesus taught us the Lord’s prayer “Our Father” . He is our Father within the framework of a relational covenant.
So returning to Solomon God extended him covenantal rest, peace. This gave Him the space to build the House of Prayer for all nations.
When God extends a covenant with us, personally, in Jesus Name, He will create a space where He shows us in His Goodness His Protection and provision. This paves the way for us to become a House of Prayer.
Solomon took what design David received of God to build the Temple.
And all what God had planned took the form of stone, pillars, doors, curtains and gold.
Once he had completed this task then he could approach God in the platform of personal and national covenant. And we read from chapters 5 to 7 of 2 Chronicles of that exchange which has all the characteristics of being covenantal.
And once the Ark was in its place, the staves taken out, so the Glory had finally come to its resting place. The very centre of God’s plan given to Moses to bring the people out of Egypt.
Prayer is a process
So when we see various generations pass to this point, some 500 years of transitions. The Tent in the Desert became the Tabernacle in Shiloh, became the Tabernacle in Zion. We see God bringing each generation nearer to the solidification of His Plan given to Moses.
So 2000 years have passed since Jesus asked of the Father the Holy Spirit to be poured out on the Church. So for the last 2000 years is coming a solidification of His Plan to bring us into His Glory in Christ. This process of prayer is generational.
The Ecclesia was to substitute a physical Temple to a spiritual Temple built up in God; Ephesians 2. This spiritual Temple in context with Solomon’s Temple must be dedicated in prayer in the covenantal approach. The result of this is the manifestations of fire and glory. We read that both the Temple and the Upper Room was marked by fire.
We have a better covenant based upon better promises. Hebrews 2.
Therefore as we need to enter into a greater understanding of prayer we must have a starting point and a framework. From this understanding we can see that prayer must start as a relational interaction. This is demonstrated in the Bible as a covenant God makes. He extends to us covenant. The Bible shows clearly that since the Fall God always took the initiative.
Once we understand this we will approach prayer is a fulfilment of our covenant with God that collectively means that we are preparing the Ecclesia to be a “temple” which manifests the Coming of the Lord.
So prayer must go beyond what we say to what we are to God.
Therefore as God starts His Covenant ” If my people ” is conditional upon being His People. This comes via a covenant, and a covenant is “cut” via shedding of blood. We have in the Old Testament the blood of animals. In the New we have the Blood of Jesus Himself.
This Blood in Hebrews 9 completes Jesus’ priesthood.
We see the Priests of Solomon’s Temple in their divinely ordained place and enveloped in glory. Hebrews says that God’s ministers are of fire. Fire sanctified people and utensils for the service of the Lord.
So prayer is an overflow of covenant. It makes us prepare to be God’s House of Prayer.