Bible Study: “The Life of David” Week # 7

The Heart of a Warrior “the Life of David”

Beginning Prayer:

Glory be to God!  Lord Jesus, we have learn how important it is to pray. We truly believe that prayer do changes things. You told us to pray at all times, You said, “a man ought to always pray.”  Thank You for sharing with us how important it is to pray, and thank You for demonstrating it for us while here on this earth. You prayed to Your heavenly Father all the time.  Make us prayer warriors who pray wherever we are.  Put a prayer in our hearts to pray to the Father always, and in our heart to love to pray always.  Help us to be diligent in our prayer life; David prayed always and had a heart after Your heavenly Father.  Father God, grant us the prayer to pray always. That pray includes “The Lord bless thee, and keep thee; the Lord make His face to shine upon thee; and be gracious unto thee; The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace; Your name is upon the children of Israel; and You have blessed them, and us through Your Son Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, AMEN.

Subject: Prayers of King David

In Scripture, incense is often associated with prayer. David prayed, “May my prayer be set before you like incense” (Psalm 141:2). In his vision of heaven, John saw that the elders around the throne “were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people” (Revelation 5:8; 8:3). As Zechariah the priest was offering incense in the temple in Luke 1:10, “all the assembled worshipers were praying outside.”


“In the morning, O LORD, You will hear my voice; in the morning I will order my prayer to You and eagerly watch.” Psalm 5:3 NAS

David, the shepherd, psalmist and king of the Old Testament, is the author of this remarkable declaration. In it he reveals the secret to a consistent, energized prayer life. The secret is contained in his use of the word “order” to describe the manner in which he prays. There is something compelling about the way David ordered or arranged his prayer time that drew him back again and again with genuine expectancy. That coupled with his enjoyment of God’s presence led him to make a commitment to daily take his place before God to watch and pray.

So what is it about his choice of the word “order” to describe his prayer that led to such an eager commitment to daily watch and pray? The Hebrew word for order, “arak,” means “to arrange” or “set in order.” In other places in scripture it is used to describe how they built an altar, arranged wood to light a fire and/or arranged the offering on the altar. It is also used to describe the way in which the showbread was to be arranged and presented to God in the Holy Place. (Exodus 40:4) And it is used in reference to the setting forth in order of a legal case. (Job 13:18)

Order is one of the first principles instituted by God at creation. It is a means by which God initiates and establishes His purposes in the earth. Most notably we see it in His creation of day and night, seed time and harvest, and His institution through the Sinai covenant of the tabernacle, system of sacrifices and prescribed approach of the High Priest into the Holy of Holies.

Given the thoughtful and logical way in which things can be ordered, what then does it mean to order one’s prayer life? I believe the ordering of David’s prayer had to do with his choice of key elements of prayer and an intentional arrangement of their sequence to bring him into the presence of God. From a study of his life we can identify at least five things that David did when he prayed that illustrate this intentional arrangement of his prayer time to insure its vibrancy.

1. Praise and thanksgiving – In the reading of the Psalms we notice immediately that typically the first order of business in David’s approach to God was to begin with worship. This priority was reflected in how he instituted singers and musicians to thank and praise God day and night within the tabernacle he erected to house the ark during the years before the temple was built. (1 Chronicles 16:4)

It is my conviction, both from Scripture and personal practice that establishing a vital and vibrant prayer time is directly linked to beginning with praise and thanksgiving. It literally is the doorway that ushers us into the presence of God. That is why we are clearly told “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” (Psalm 100:4 NIV)

2. Acknowledgement of Dependence – A critical touch point for David in his prayers to God was always an acknowledgement of his dependence upon God both for the forgiveness of his sins and the carrying of his burdens. He knew that if he tolerated unconfessed iniquity in his heart the Lord would not hear him and so he prayed repeatedly for God to cover his transgression and cleanse him from his sin. (Psalm 66:18 & 51:1-2) The other thing he did without hesitation was to make sure he regularly gave his burdens to God. “Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” (Psalm 55:22 ESV)

In order to experience an unfettered and rejuvenating time of prayer it is contingent that we make a point of laying all of our sins and burdens at the foot of the cross of Jesus. That secures a freedom from distraction and instills a confidence to proceed in prayer as the Holy Spirit leads.

3. Confession of God’s Promises – The basis of our authority in prayer is the word of God. When we pray God’s promises back to Him and declare the beauty of His character as revealed in the Scriptures we align ourselves with His will. He has promised that “if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him.” (1 John 5:14-15 NIV) There is power in praying God’s promises that far eclipse praying our problems. Prayers that get answers and energize the pray-ers are prayers that declare the scriptures, because faith comes by hearing the word of God proceeding from our own mouths. (Romans 10:17) David repeatedly rehearsed God’s promises as he prayed, choosing to stand on God’s word and the faithfulness of His character as the foundation of his authority. (Psalm 86:15, 2 Samuel 7:21-29)

4. Responsiveness to the Leading of the Holy Spirit – An ordered or structured approach to prayer is like a launching pad for inspired spontaneity. Beginning with worship, proceeding through an acknowledgement of dependence upon God and then moving into a bold profession of God’s will in His word positions the pray-er to sense the leading of the Holy Spirit and respond accordingly. In many of David’s psalms as he proceeds to pour out his heart, we notice a sudden shift in the tenor and Spirit of his prayer. Often he concludes his psalms with confessions of faith and confidence in God. (Psalms 6, 7, 11, 13, 16 & 17 just to mention a few) In some we see an ebb and flow throughout the psalm of Spirit-inspired prayer mixed in with the other elements. (Psalm 18)

5. Variety – One of the salient features of David’s prayers as demonstrated primarily in the Psalms is the variety of types and foci of prayer. There are psalms that are petitions, complaints, laments, spiritual warfare, prophetic declarations, litanies of God’s faithfulness and hymns of praise. There are psalms focused on Israel, the nations, the enemy, the oppressed, the overcomer, the sinner, the forgiven, the past, the future, the wonder of creation and the glory of God. Variety is the byword and it is a critical ingredient without which sustainable and energized prayer would not be possible. Paul said it best. “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” (Ephesians 6:18 NIV)

These five ingredients that David used in ordering his prayer are by no means exhaustive. But in the whole scheme of things I am of the deepest conviction that when all five are incorporated into a person’s daily prayer time, they like David will have a sustainable consistent, energized prayer life. I can personally testify that by God’s grace, my commitment over the past year to ordering my daily prayer time using these five keys has reenergized my prayer life and relationship with Him.

Quiz: Week # 7

1.) What was David’s occupation before he faced Goliath?
cook
scholar
shepherd
captain

2.) Why did the Israelite army fear Goliath so much?
he was the smartest man in the land
he was the king of the Philistines
he was a giant
he had three arms

3.) Who challenged Goliath?
Saul
Samuel
David
Jonathan

4.) Why did David want to kill Goliath?
to free Israel and stand up for God
to get money
to show off to his older brothers
to win the hand of King Saul’s daughter

5.) Why was David so confident that he could kill Goliath?
he was wearing more armor than Goliath was
he had God on his side
he knew he could outwit Goliath
he had a secret weapon

6.) How did David kill Goliath?
he stabbed him with a spear
with a sling and stone
he lured him into a den of lions
he fed him poison in the night

Questions:

1). Incense is often associated with what in the Bible?

2). What do this verse means to you? (Psalm 5:3)

3). How often should we approach God’s presence?

4). Describe the word “order” in the Bible.

5). Given the thoughtful and logical way in which things can be ordered, what then does it mean to order one’s prayer life?

6). Name the five things David did when he prayed that illustrated his prayer life.

7). What do praise and thanksgiving means to you?

8). Do you acknowledge your dependence upon God?

9). Do you confess God’s promises when you pray?

10). Do you respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit in your prayer life?

11). Name some of the types and foci of prayers in the Psalms.

12). What does (Ephesians 6:18) says about prayer?

Weekly Psalm of King David: Psalm 136

Weekly Prayer of David: Psalm 55

Self-Examination Time: What can you do today to stay The Course?

Weekly Reading Assignment: Proverbs 25-28

Ending Prayer

God bless!

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