In Mark 11:17 Jesus said “My House will be called a House of Prayer for all nations.” The words “will be called” refer to the identity of God’s house. It will be identified as a place of prayer. It will be associated with prayer. Jesus was quoting Isaiah 56:7 which is a chapter about welcoming and blessing all who come to the house of prayer. Prayer was priority #1 to Jesus. We know he often spent entire nights in prayer. The Jewish temple existed for people to draw near to God in prayer from every tribe, nation, and language. Later, after Jesus ascended into heaven, the apostles and other disciples gathered together for prayer in the upper room. “They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.” (Acts 1:14). As a direct result of this prayer meeting, the Church was born in Acts 2.
I want you to see that the church was not born in a worship service or singing worship songs. It was born by praying… it was not born by having a fellowship lunch, but it was born by praying… it was not birthed after a planning session, but it was birthed after a prayer meeting… it was not started by implementing a business plan, but by kneeling in prayer… it was not even born in a bible study, but by praying. There’s nothing wrong with worshipping, fellowshipping & eating together, planning and improving church systems & processes, and of course nothing wrong with Bible study. Those are all excellent things that every Church should have. I’m not saying those things are at all bad or unnecessary. But what I am saying is that none of those activities are the #1 priority in moving a Church forward. Our Church is part of the global ministry of the Alliance. One of the Alliance Core Values is this: Prayer is the primary work of God’s people. We cannot neglect our #1 priority. “When we depend on man, we get what man can do. When we depend on prayer, we get what God can do.” I want to depend on prayer. Do you?