Nothing can stop prayer

Nothing can stop prayer (First part)


Verse of the day: Acts 12:10 “They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him

Every human being who lives in this world must have needs that he cannot get by himself. That’s why we all need prayer. Sometime it happens that we are in a situation when we need a simple assistance from God because we believe we have all it takes. For example if we have to pass an exam and we are well prepared and we got everything in control, we only pray for God’s assistance but we are confident because of our natural intelligence.


However, there are some situations when we are simply unable to find the solution by ourselves without the Lord’s intervention. Those are the situations where we feel like being in a prison and only God can save us from disaster. It’s this worse situation that we will talk about during the entire week.


We will essentially meditate on Chapter 12 of the book of Acts. The passage talks about events that marked the life of apostles during the worst period of tribulations of the Church history.


In the beginning of the chapter, we hear about king Herod who just executed Apostle James the brother of John by killing him with a sword and since it pleased the Jews, he arrested Peter (Acts 12:3). Knowing the power and the authority of the king, it’s obvious that Peter had to be executed like James. I got an opportunity to deeply meditate on this scripture for a better description of Peter imprisonment:


Peter was put in prison and guarded by four squads of four soldiers each (Acts 12:4), which means that he was guarded by sixteen soldiers. In the second part, we will see how he was bound with two chains sleeping between two soldiers. All these show us how King Herod has used the best of his power to make sure Peter would not run away. Therefore, we can conclude that Peter’s imprisonment was extremely important to the king’s eyes.


This is the same for Christians to Satan’s eyes because he tries to imprison us in order to stop us doing the will of God that destroys his plans. It’s very interesting to notice that on the fifth verse it’s said that while Peter was kept in prison, the church was earnestly praying to God for him (Acts 12:5).


To be continued in the second part.


Chris Ndikumana

Nothing can stop prayer (Second part)


Verse of the day: Acts 12:6 “The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance


I ended the first part by explaining that despite the king’s decision to kill Peter, the church was earnestly praying to God for him. There is a huge power of deliverance through prayers. If we take time to closely meditate on each verse, we would discover a great teaching of the Holy-Spirit about what is needed in order to get delivered from the enemy’s prison.


The verse of the day tells us that Peter was bound with two chains, which means that his hands and legs were both bound. It happens in life when our hands are spiritually bound so much so everything we do become absolutely fruitless. Likewise, our feet can spiritually be bound at the point that we cannot even go forward in life or in our projects where everything we try does not succeed.


Although he was bound with two chains, he had to sleep between two soldiers who had a clear mission of stopping him from any trial of escape. Once a child of God is in a spiritual prison, there are demons that have to make sure that the two chains are well tight.


In spite of the two chains and the two soldiers around him while he was sleeping, there were also sentries stood guard at the entrance to watch him in case there was any attack from outside trying to set him free. Because the devil is aware about a possible divine army intervention (angels), he is always prepared accordingly. That is why he sends demons to guard the spiritual prison before the exit door that can be defined as the door of deliverance.


All this impressive description is a confirmation that Peter was extremely important to King Herod’s eyes otherwise he would be kept in prison like everybody else.


If the devil does all he can to bind and immobilize you somewhere, it simply means that he couldn’t kill you but he still does not want you to move forward. He does not want you to walk (by binding your feet), he does not want you to do anything (by binding your hands), he wants to make sure that you are and you will remain in the spiritual prison he created for you.


Later in this teaching, we will discover that God can sometimes allow us to be in that prison in order to accomplish a particular plan but He always takes us out of it.


In the third part, we will see the requested conditions for Peter to get out the prison.


Chris Ndikumana

Nothing can stop prayer (Part 4)


Verse of the day: Acts 12:8: Then the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and tie on your sandals”; and so he did. And he said to him, “Put on your garment and follow me.”


In the third part, I was saying that the angel of God can intervene in our problems and two chains can fall, which means that we are free to move but we still remain in a situation where we cannot go far in life. We are always in the same things with no significant progression simply because even though the chains fell, we can still be in the prison because the Iron Gate is always shut.

As long as the iron door is still shut, all we can do is to walk around in the prison but we are never completely free. As we read it in the verse of the day, after the chains fell, Peter was supposed to follow the angel but the angel gave him three conditions before following him until the Iron Gate open:


To gird himself (put on the belt), to tie on his sandals and to put on his garment.

The belt is spiritually explained as “the truth” which is a spiritual armor that Christians must constantly have (Eph 6:14). All our activities must be based on the truth if we want the iron door to open. Lies must flee away from our vocabulary because of the truth in it.

Sandals or shoes are spiritually explained as “the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace” and it’s another spiritual needed armor for a Christian (Eph 6:15). The readiness is justified by works we do for the Lord because of the gospel of peace in us. Some Christians do all they can to get a sanctified life but they don’t feel any readiness for the work of God. If we don’t feel any readiness for the work of the Lord, it means that our feet are without shoes (spiritually).


The garment is spiritually explained as the anointing of the Holy Spirit as it’s the case for Elijah and Elisha and it’s that anointing that allows us to overcome impossible situations.


The angel couldn’t take Peter out of the prison without those three conditions: The belt, the sandals and the garment.


In the fifth part, we will see how looks the triumphal exit of Peter followed by God’s angel after having passing through the Iron door.


Chris Ndikumana

Nothing can stop prayer (Part 5)



Verse of the day: Acts 12:10 “They passed the first and second guards and came to the Iron Gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him


The exit day is finally arrived for Peter. This morning we will meditate on the triumphal exit of the prison but we need to be aware about something: before reaching the Iron Gate, Peter and the angel had to pass through two guards.


Not only chains have to fall but there are two other indispensable trials before reaching the Iron Gate which is the final step. Every time we pass through a period of trial, God is busy arranging many things in us as long as we have a positive attitude in persevering in prayer. If we are in a period of trial where we are stuck without being able to move on and we start to complain and murmur against the Lord, we stay before the same gate because we haven’t understood the lesson. We cannot move to the next class (at school) without succeeding the one we presently are. Once we succeed to pass through the first gate, we move on a little bit to finally arrive before the second gate. Again, we have to prove that we are able to pass through the second gate (trial) otherwise we will not move on. I also have to precise that trials of the second gate are more difficult than the ones we face on the first gate as the exam of the fourth grade is more difficult that the exam of the second grade. The explanation is simple: The more we move on, the stronger.


The verse of the day tells us that after having passed the first and the second guards, they reached the gate leading to the city. The city represents our destination (or calling) according to the perfect plan of God. What is interesting is that after having passed all the gates and arrived at the Iron Gate, the gate opened by itself! Brothers and sisters in the Lord, I have to announce you that once the chains fall and we pass through the first and second gates, the iron door will open by itself because at that level all is accomplished and the test is successful.


I don’t know on which step you are now because there are three steps: The chains that bind us, the first guard and the second guard. Some still have hand and feet bound, others are free from chains but are still stuck by the first gate while others wait for the second gate to get open in order to see the Iron Gate getting open by itself.


In the sixth part, I will finish this teaching by talking about how God fulfills His will in a prison.


Chris Ndikumana

Nothing can stop prayer (Part 6)



Verse of the day: Acts 16:32 “Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house


Today, we end the teaching of the week and I prefer not to finish without showing by a biblical example how God can realize His perfect plan in a prison.


Some Christians can easily judge someone who passes through a period of trials as if he is in it because of sin. We tend to believe that if someone has a good relationship with God, everything must be successful, he is supposed to not face opposition on his way, the spiritual prison is not for him, he cannot be sick…but my experience with the Lord helped me to understand that God can allow that we can be in a spiritual prison in order to transform us and realize His will in our lives. The devil can hope to bind you in a prison for later understand that he contributed to the fulfillment of the will of God. That’s what happened when he thought he crucified Jesus although it was the way by which the world would be saved.


The biblical illustration that I will give you tells us about Paul and Silas who found themselves in a prison because they were proclaiming the good news of Jesus. Not only they were in prison but they were severely guarded and their feet were fastened in the stocks (Acts 16:23-24). The bible tells us that while they were praying and singing hymns to God, the prison doors flew open and everyone’s chains came loose (Acts 16:25-26).


Still in the same prison, they preached the jailer by telling him about the love of God and Jesus who’s the way to salvation and finally he got converted (in the prison). The same jailer received them at his household, he washed their wounds and the verse of the day tells us that Paul and Silas spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house and on verse 33 it’s said that he and all his household were baptized (Acts 16:33).


For those who didn’t know, that’s how the church of Philippe was born and we can see how Paul praised them in the book of Philippians. In God’s plan, Paul and Silas had to go to jail and be bound so that the jailer and his entire region would discover Jesus-Christ.


Therefore, do not ask God why you are in a spiritual prison, but ask him what to do for the chains to fall and how you could pass through the first and the second gate so that the iron gate could open by itself.


Chris Ndikumana

 




               
         
               

 

 

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