From the Pulpit of a Holiness Preacher
An email newsletter ministry of Richard D. Swift, publishing the sermons of Rev. Reed A. Swift (1899-1973), a holiness preacher
The following sermon was preached in the Free Methodist Churches of Pomona, Mira Loma, and Summersville, California (1955) and in the Bible Missionary Churches of Cucamonga (1958) and Ontario (June, 1962), California. The latter location is listed as a separate church but I believe it was actually the temporary location while the house used for worship by the Cucamonga Church was in the process of being moved.
How to Pray and Get Results
"Lord teach us to pray"
Jesus, by example and precept, taught us (1) to pray, and (2) how to pray.
1. To pray: fastings and prayer alone in the mountains, etc.
2. How to pray: The Lord's Prayer
Jesus said, "Men ought always to pray and not faint." The psalmist said, "Evening, morning, and noon, will I praise Him." (Psalm 55:17)
1. The way to become strong in prayer and faith is to pray! You can't hold a grudge toward someone and expect God to answer prayer. "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me."
2. John 15:7 "If ye abide in me, an my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will and it shall be done unto you." If God's Word abides abides in us and and governs us, our prayer will be "Giving and Living".
As I was to preach in Hermon once, an old brother came up to me and said, "Brother Swift, if you preach against tobacco and worldly dress, I will amen you!" That's fine but not all!
3. Philippians 4:6-7 "Be careful for nothing," (Don't be afraid of the devil or anything but ask largely) 'but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God, and the peace of God shall keep your hearts and minds." Express your appreciation to God and man for kindness. Teach your children courtesy and gratitude in the home.
4. Matthew 26:41 "Watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation." Colossians 4:2 "Continue in prayer and watch in the same with thanksgiving." Pray until you feel joy in your service to Christ and be thankful. Guard your eyes, ears, lips, mind, hands, and feet against satan!
5. Psalm 84:11 "For the Lord is a sun and a shield: the Lord will give grace and glory.: No good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly." I Peter 3:12 "For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and His ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil." Righteousness means fair dealing, justice, piety, and godliness. some people profess a high state of grace because they are stoutly opposed to certain forms of worldliness and wrong, but their lives indicate that they are deficient in goodness and kindness.
6. Jeremiah 48:10 "Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully." The margin says, "negligently". "Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness." Faith
7. I John 3:22 "And whatsoever we ask, we recieve of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight." Prayer is answered on two conditions: Obedience and Pleasing God. Here the soul finds green pastures and still waters. It is refreshed and grows into maturity. He prays and gets answers.
8. James 5:16 "The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." John Bunyan said, "When thou prayest, rather let your heart be without words than your words without heart." Live by prayer. As for the Syrophenecian woman, faith is essential. A crumb of God's power!
9. I Timothy 2:8 "I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands without wrath and doubting." Matthew 21:22 "And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall recieve." Help us! mark 11:24 "Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye recieve them, and ye shall have them." Daniel believed in his God.
Unfortunately, page 3 of the sermon notes is missing. A gospel tract entitled, "Sayings on Prayer" by Rev. A.L. Haywood and others is marked as page 4. I type only the marked portions of that tract which I assume to be part of this sermon.
Sayings on Prayer by Rev. A.L. Haywood and others
Prayer is the secret of success.
Prayer is forgotten secret of the church.
Our ability to stay with God outside the secret place will be measured by our ability to stay with God in the secret place.
To be prayerless is to be both powerless and passionless, and to be powerless and passionless is to be fruitless.
We cannot do anything as it ought to be done until we have first prayed as we ought to pray.
And after having prayed as we ought to pray we can do anything required of us as it ought to be done.
We cannot become a Christian without prayer.
We cannot be a successful Christian except we continue in prayer.
We cannot be a successful praying Christian unless we apply system to our praying program.
Prayer is an art, and in order to become proficient in any art, we must practice and practice.
Too many prayers of today are being detoured from the perpindicular to the horizontal.
Paul knew that in the spiritual realm as elsewhere, in union there is strength, that the concentration and aggregation of faith, desire, and prayer increased the volume of spiritual fervor until it became overwhelming and irresistable in its power.
If we have a heart and a will to pray we will find time and a place to pray.
End of tract.
We must pray and believe and then recieve. Andrew Murray said, "Faith is setting our wills to have what God has willed for us." Prayer and faith help each other! "Earnest prayer energizes faith. Strong faith makes prayer powerful."
"Oh for a faith that will not shrink though pressed by every foe;
That will not tremble on the brink of any earthly woe.
Faith mighty faith the promise sees and looks to that alone;
Laughs at impossibilities and cries, 'It shall be done!' "
Faith assures us that our heavenly Father hears us and will answer. Isaiah 1:19 "If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land." Because you can pray with confidence then and recieve from God's bountiful hand, are you in need today? Why not pray, obey, believe, and recieve? "All things are possible to him that believeth."
This concludes my grandfather's sermon.
Yours for Radical Holiness,
Richard D. Swift
505 Hickory Hills Drive
Dexter, MO 63841
Standing Up Against Evil
Psalm 94:16 "Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? or who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?"
Although the psalmist is asking a question of appeal, God is also asking this question, "Who will rise up; who will stand up for me against the evil dowers and workers of iniquity?"
I. Who are the evil doers and workers of iniquity?
A. Wicked leaders- Proverbs 28: 12, 28; 29:2
12 When righteous men do rejoice, there is great glory: but when the wicked rise, a man is hidden.
28 When the wicked rise, men hide themselves: but when they perish, the righteous increase.
2 When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.
1. They pass bad laws legalizing evil. Isaiah 10:1 Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed;To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless!
2. They take away the God given rights of citizens. Isaiah 10:2 To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless!
a. Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of Happiness as described in the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights
b. The right to keep what you make by enacting excessive taxes to "redistribute the wealth".
B. Wicked people-
1. Oppressive: Ezekiel 22:29 The people of the land have used oppression, and exercised robbery, and have vexed the poor and needy: yea, they have oppressed the stranger wrongfully.
2. Immoral: Hosea 4:1,2 Hear the word of the Lord, ye children of Israel: for the Lord hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land. By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood.
3. Entrap with nets: Micah 7:2 The good man is perished out of the earth: and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they hunt every man his brother with a net.
4. No respect for family: Micah 7:6 For the son dishonoureth the father, the daughter riseth up against her mother, the daughter in law against her mother in law; a man's enemies are the men of his own house.
5. Covetous: Isaiah 5:8 Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!
6. Pleasure seekers Isaiah 5:11 Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them!
7. Love sin: Isaiah 5:18 Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope:
8. Call evil good and good evil: Isaiah 5:20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
9. Wise in their own eyes: Isaiah 5:21 Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!
10. Justify their wickedness and their wicked leaders and take away moral laws: Isaiah 5:22-24 Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink:Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him! Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the Lord of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
II. How To Rise Up Against the Evil Doers and Workers of Iniquity
A. Exercise your right to vote!
1. Vote against legalizing abortion, homosexuality, gambling, alcohol, and pornography.
2. Vote for amendments and laws upholding morality.
3. Vote for leaders who are taking a public stand for moral values and against evil. How can a person call himself or herself a Christian and vote for candidates supporting abortion, homosexual rights, etc.? How can people be members of a political party that takes a stand for the evils mentioned above and call themselves Christian?
B. Let your voice be heard!
1. For those unborn babies about to be aborted (murdered): Psalm 79:11 Let the sighing of the prisoner come before thee; according to the greatness of thy power preserve thou those that are appointed to die; Psalm 102:20 To hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death;
2. For traditional moral values:
a. Sanctity of human life from conception on
b. Traditional family and marriage between one man and one woman
c. Rights of parents to choose how or where they want their children educated; public, private, or home-schooling
d. Freedom of religion in the public arena
1. For our leaders and that godly men and women will replace those who aren't
2. For righteousness to prevail.
III. Ways to Stand Up Against Evil
A. Do something! Join up with the National Life Chain.
Every first Sunday in October, churches and Christians meet at designated areas for one hour, 2:30-3:30 pm in each time zone, to pray for an end to the abortion holocaust and for the those mothers who have had or are considering having an abortion. This year it is October 7th. Is your church involved?
B. Go Vote!
November 6 is the general election. This is a very crucial election. Moral issues are involved.
We have in the White House, a president who as Illinois State Senator, voted four times against a ban on late term abortions. Three times as state senator, he voted against a "Born Alive Protection Act" which would have saved the life of an infant born alive in a botched abortion attempt. As president, he supported the "Freedom of Choice Act." And we have Christians who, not only voted for him once but are going to vote for him again? How could they?
At the latest DNC, 25 speakers endorsed abortion. The president of Planned Parenthood, Cecile Richards spoke at the convention, slamming pro-life Christians for being anti-women. The party platform calls for tax funding of abortions. Not only is abortion endorsed by the DNC, but same-sex marriage is also. The platform endorses gay marriage. Now our president does also. And Christians voted for this man and will vote for him again? And Christians identify themselves as members of his political party? I just don't understand!
Where is the outcry? Are preachers not crying out against the inconsistency of voting different than one's beliefs? I believe they are crying out, but some are so stubbornly a part of their party they will not hear!
Will you stand up against evil?
God Save America,
Richard D. Swift