Christians should model the Apostle Paul in praying with purpose because God is personal, powerful, gracious, loving, and generous, said Oklahoma Baptist leader Anthony L. Jordan at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary’s March 14 chapel service.
“The fact of the matter is that if you ever want to wonder about how generous your Father is, just look to the cross,” said Jordan, executive director-treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.
In his personal study, Jordan has been walking through the prayers of the Apostle Paul and describes reading them as entering into the prayer closet with Paul. Preaching from Ephesians 3:14-21, Jordan said Paul approaches the throne of God on his knees, not in a casual way, but with intensity.
Paul’s prayers are rooted in “spiritual and eternal and kingdom things,” he said. This reflects the relationship Paul has with God. Christians pray to God as “our Father.”
“When I get on my knees before my Father, I am there because I have been adopted into the family of God,” he said. “I’m not going in to see some stranger; I’m not going to see some far away king. Listen, I am going into the very presence of my Father who has adopted me into his family.”
Paul prays for God to give spiritual power to the Christians in Ephesus so they may understand the fullness of God’s love for them, Jordan said. Outside of themselves, Christians are not able to fully understand the infinite truths of God without his power and love.
“Prayer finds its strength, not in us, but in the ability of God to accomplish what we seek his face for,” Jordan said. “Our God is plenty able, he is powerful enough, to come and fill our hearts and fill it with his love.”
In his introduction, SBTS President R. Albert Mohler Jr explained the indebtedness Southern has to state conventions, like the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.
“And through the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, millions and millions of dollars have flown to the missions work and the other work of the Southern Baptist Convention including this [institution],” Mohler said. “Just to state the matter bluntly, if you were to take away the investment freely and generously given by the Oklahoma Baptists to this institution, if you could picture it in terms of the campus, you’d have to remove a couple of pretty big buildings from this campus just because of the generosity of the churches of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma.
“I don’t think there’s anybody who knows Oklahoma better than Dr. Anthony Jordan. … But you also need to know he loves Southern Baptists.”
Audio and video of Jordan’s message are available here.