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No Substitute for Prayers!

By Oswald J. Smith


      Intercessory prayer is the Christian's most effective weapon. Nothing can withstand it's power. It will do things when all else has failed. And the marvel is that we turn to other agencies in order to accomplish what only prayer can bring to pass. God has placed this mighty weapon in our hands, and He expects us to use it. How disappointed He must be when we lay it a side and substitute natural means for supernatural work.

      In this twentieth century we are, more and more, turning from the God-appointed means of intercessory prayer and adopting, instead, merely natural agencies for the carrying on of His work. Everywhere we look it is the same, both in evangelism and ordinary church work. Intercessory prayer has been shelved. For some reason it is out of date. Our methods, we say, are better, our plans more successful, and so we adopt natural means to bring to pass the supernatural.

      My brethren, it can never be done, We may appear to be successful; the crowds may come; the altar may be full night after night. Reported results may be broadcasted everywhere. Whole cities may be stirred and mightily moved! And yet when it is all over and two or three years have passed, how little will be found to be genuine! And why? Simply because we have been satisfied with a superficial, spectacular work, brought to pass by natural means. Consequently the truly supernatural has been largely lacking. Oh let us get back to intercessory prayer, the highest form of Christians service, and give God no rest until we have a spiritual outcome.

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