Mark 11:17 And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves. (KJV)
The Purpose of Prayer
Repentance Deuteronomy 4:27-31
Encouragement 1 Chronicles 16:10-16
Strength Ephesians 6:18-20
Transformation 2 Chronicles 7:14
Jesus was referencing text from Isaiah 56:7 when He was driving out the corrupt practitioners who were turning the Temple Courts into a disreputable market place. God’s house, the church, should be a “house of prayer.” All people should be able to enter into His house and receive answers to their petitions.
So, what are the basic components of a dwelling? How is a house built?
Not being an architect, an engineer, nor a contractor, this explanation will be simple. It will not delve into the planning, or construction aspects of building. However, it will hopefully paint a mental picture and make some sense.
After the blueprints are drawn, and materials selected a foundation is established to support the weight and give stability to the structure. When building a “house of prayer” we should begin with a solid foundation. The thing that will create stability and support the weight of our prayers is purpose. The purpose of prayer is REST – Not the feet up laid back in the recliner rest – But Repentance, Encouragement, Strength, and Transformation.
We seem to ignore God’s direction for our lives all too often and follow a cyclical pattern of rebellion, enslavement, repentance and liberty. This has been the human condition for a longtime. Even after being delivered from slavery in Egypt the Israelites were told in Deuteronomy 4:27-31 they would follow this pattern, but they would find God once they came to a place of true repentance.
Once we have found Repentance and turned back to God, He begins to encourage us. Christ told the disciples He would not leave them comfortless. We have access to the promise of the Holy Spirit. He is our Encourager. As we remember what God has done for us, we experience encouragement. See 1 Chronicles 16:10-16.
Moving from that place of Repentance and Encouragement, we are built up in God’s Strength to accomplish the calling He has placed upon our lives. We stay in house of prayer and God does the work through us. His joy becomes our strength. Read, Ephesians 6:18-20.
The work is the Transformation of this world. Watching the lives around us being healed and filled with Faith, Hope, and Love is the final element in the purpose of prayer. The strong foundation which brings support and stability to the “house of prayer” really is REST. Consider 2 Chronicles 7:14. Be encouraged to find Repentance –Encouragement – Strength – Transformation as your purpose in prayer today.