WHY PRAYER FAILS.
I. GOD ANSWERS PRAYER.
A. Prayer plan broken.
1. Break off connections.
2. Delay or diminish.
3. Outside hindrance.
II. BREAKING CONNECTIONS.
2. Psa 66
. If I regard iniquity.
3. Telephone line; pull plug.
a. Talk convincingly.
4. Prayer becomes deceptive.
a. Sin slaps God in the face.
1. Small sin cultured.
2. Grain of club.
III. SIN GIVES SATAN A FOOTHOLD.
B. Motives in prayer - James.
1. Mother for son.
2. Wife for husband.
3. Minister for revival.
C. Unforgiving spirit.
1. Man to altar.
2. Lord's prayer.
3. Peter growing in grace.
4. Parable of two debtors.
D. Why results delayed.
1. Sake of nation (Moses).
2. More given (Samuel, Hannah).
3. Larger plan of service (Paul's) carried out.
a. Desire to preach to Jews.
"WHAT CHRISTMAS IS ALL ABOUT."
I. THAT EXOTIC MOMENT IN HISTORY WHEN GOD CLOTHED HIMSELF IN A BODY OF FLESH.
A. The fulfillment of God's promise of Isaiah 7
, "Behold a virgin shall conceive..."
1. Think of it! The eternal God Creator of the universe born of a woman lying in that manger.
2. What condescension from the throne of heaven, adored by angels to a lowly manger worshipped by shepherds.
B. Why did He come?
1. To give us a true view of God (Verse 18).
a. "Full of grace."
1. Grace has its roots in love. God is love.
2. Why does God bestow His undeserved favor? Because He loves.
3. The word grace also means beauty. The beauty was manifested in Christ.
b. "Full of truth" - Satan had confused man with his lies.
1. Man held wrong concepts of God.
2. The misinterpreting of history.
a. When God said, "Adam where art thou?" That was not the call of an arresting officer, it was the sob of a heartbroken Father.
b. The flood was not sent to destroy men, but to preserve man on the earth.
3. It is shocking how readily man listens to Satan's lies.
2. To redeem world.
a. The world was lost, man was lost.
b. The darkness of sin hid the way to God.
c. Jesus came to shed light on the path (verse 9).
d. Love is also the source of the desire to redeem.
1. "God so loved the world..."
II. THE TRAGEDIES OF HIS COMING.
A. "The world knew Him not." (verse 10).
1. They were expecting Him to be born in a palace, to hobnob with the elite.
2. They didn't expect to find Him in a stable, or keeping company with common fishermen.
3. The world still does not know Him today.
a. Oh yes, they will string lights on their homes, decorate the tree, exchange gifts, and get drunk.
1. Scotch tape and booze do prime business this time of year.
2. I have more respect for the Communist in Russia who say they are atheist and have abolished Christmas than the hypocritical U.S. who celebrates Christmas without knowing Christ.
4. Do you know Him?
B. "He came to His own and His own received Him not."
1. There was no room in the inn at the time of His birth.
2. That seemed almost a prophecy.
a. Men today still refuse to make room for Christ in their lives.
b. Room for pleasure, business, profit, goofing, almost anything else.
c. Some of you today have made room in your schedule this special Sunday.
1. You're frigid as you sit there.
2. You're making room for Him this one hour out of the year. (8765)
C. "But as many as received Him, to them gave He power." (verse 12).