Thursday, December 29, 2016

“Prerequisites of Peace” Part 3 - “Supplication"

"Prerequisites of Peace"

Part 3 - "Supplication"

    "Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:6-7). 

   The prerequisites, as taught by the Apostle Paul:

1.  The determination to not be governed by fear.
2.  Prayerful fellowship with God.
3.  Supplication, or humbly acknowledging our need for His help.
4.  Thanksgiving.
5.  Specific offering of requests for God's help.

   The word "supplication" means need, or want, or privation.  The Apostle Paul uses the term to address the attitude with which born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ approach our Heavenly Father.  We come as those who recognize our complete dependence on Him.  "Without Me, ye can do nothing" declared the Lord Jesus to His disciples (John 15:5).  God gives to us "life and breath and all things" (Acts 17:25).  He made us, sustains our being, and we would cease to exist apart from His "upholding all things by the word of His power" (Hebrews 1:3).  Thus, we come as supplicants, making our requests in humility.  Prayer and pride are mutually exclusive realities.  Only the meek can seek God and His gracious provision.  "He giveth grace unto the lowly" (Proverbs 3:34).

    Recognizing our role as dependent children - and acting accordingly - constitutes a primary prerequisite of peace.  "There is no peace to the wicked" proclaims the prophet, the reason being that "the wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God" (Isaiah 48:22; Psalm 10:4).  Believers must maintain the attitude of our ongoing need for God's ongoing supply.  Such awareness fosters tranquility of heart because it guides us in the Truth about our Lord and about ourselves.  We can never rest if we fail to remember and affirm that God is God, and we are not.  We apply the gifts and provisions He supplies, of course, but we never view ourselves as anything other than supplicants and stewards of the One who "shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).  Such faith honors our Lord and graces our spirits with the peace of Christ.

   Still waters of the heart await those who remember that "the Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want" (Psalm 23:1).  Sheep require the provision and protection of their overseer.  They must also maintain the attitude of supplication whereby they walk in Truth, and thus, in peace.  The Shepherd takes care of His own, perfectly, providentially, persistently, and passionately.  The sheep receive His gifts with gratitude and the determination to use them in a manner that honors their Master.  This is peace, the "peace of God, which passeth all understanding".  There is no other.

"Rest in the Lord."
(Psalm 37:7)

Weekly Memory Verse
    Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
(II Corinthians 11:14-15)

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