Matthew 6:5-8 When You Pray

Matthew 6:5-8            When You Pray                                              WC McCarter


The Introduction

This week is an important week for us. Over 80 years ago people starting meeting together to worship God. Many of them were your families, your parents. Some of you were even there. My sermon today is about prayer. As many of you know, the Fort Trial Christian Church actually began as a prayer meeting in 1928 that grew into a church who built the old sanctuary. People like you and I, the Fort Trial people from the beginning, and all Christians are people of prayer. It is not “if” you pray, but “when” you pray.


READ Scripture- This is the Word of God


How the Hypocrites Pray (5)

For public recognition. The Lord is not against public prayer. He is against holier-than-thou language and preaching to others in prayer. Hypocrites were Greek actors who wore masks. Their reward is to be seen by men, and that is all they will receive.


How the Holy Pray (6)

Privately and purely. The Father is seeking those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. He is seeking those who call out to Him authentically and purely. He wants you to simply talk to Him, lean on the everlasting arms.


How the Heathen Pray (7)

With vain repetitions. The Lord is not against persistent prayer. He is against repeating prayers or phrases with no thought to what you are saying. Some use vain repetitions thinking that they can manipulate God, maybe get the right formula, or show stamina (see Ecc 5:2).


The Conclusion

God knows what we need even before we ask Him. There is nothing wrong with public prayer, but when it is done just as a show then the only reward that will be bestowed will be the praise of others. There is nothing wrong with frequent prayers or saying some of the same things time and again, but if it done aimlessly then the prayer will not be heard. We must not be like the hypocrites or the heathen. We are holy.


We must trust our Father in heaven who is all-knowing and all-resourceful. James teaches that some Christians do not have simply because they do not ask. We must be those who ask. We need to be those who stand in the gap for our families, for our church, and for others.