Unresolved Differences

The Need For Love & Unity

1 Peter 3: 7 “Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife...that your prayers may not be hindered.”

Matt 5: 23,24 “Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.”

Mark 11: 25,26 “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

Luke 6: 27,28 “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you.”

1 John 2: 10 “Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.”

Anonymous Christian:
“It would be an immense gain to our spiritual life if we would resolve not to attempt to pray until we had done all in our power to make peace and harmony between ourselves and any with whom we have quarreled. Until we do this as far as lies in our power, our prayers are just wasted breath. Unkindly feelings toward another hinder God from helping us in the way He desires.” Anonymous Christian, The Kneeling Christian, p. 115.

S D Gordon:
“The shortest way to God...is not the way to the altar, but around by (the wronged) man’s house. ‘First, be reconciled’—keep your perspective straight, follow the right order ‘first be reconciled’—not second; then come and offer thy gift.” S D Gordon, Quiet Talks on Prayer.

Roy Hession:
“The work of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross was not only to bring men back into fellowship with God, but also into fellowship with their fellow men. Indeed it cannot do one without the other.... If we have not been brought into vital fellowship with our brother, it is a proof that to that extent we have not been brought into vital fellowship with God. The First Epistle of John insists on testing the depth and reality of a man’s fellowship with God by the depth and reality of his fellowship with his brethren.... Everything that comes as a barrier between us and another, be it ever so small, comes as a barrier between us and God.” Roy Hession The Calvary Road (Fort Washington, PA: Christian Literature Crusade, 1988) pp. 35, 36.

D L Moody:
“(Lack) of forgiveness...is keeping more people from having power with God than any other thing—they are not willing to cultivate the spirit of forgiveness. If we allow the root of bitterness to spring up in our hearts against someone, our prayer will not be answered. It may not be an easy thing to live in sweet fellowship with all those with whom we come in contact; but that is what the grace of God is given to us for.” D L Moody, Prevailing Prayer.

Ruth Paxson:
“If anyone would pray the effectual prayer he must be righteous in his relationship with his fellow men. No pretense of piety will suffice to conceal the presence of dishonesty, greed, jealousy, resentment, unforgiveness or hatred toward others. It has sometimes happened that a truly Spirit-filled man or woman has been shorn of all power in prayer and in preaching because of being dishonest in the handling of funds or because of some unrighteous action in relation to his coworkers.” Ruth Paxson, Life on the Highest Plane, (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1978), p. 405.

Charles Spurgeon:
“Selfishness cannot be trusted with power in prayer. (Individuals) that love neither God nor men cannot be trusted with great, broad, unlimited promises. If God is to hear us, we must love God and love our fellow men. When we love God, we shall not pray for anything that would not honor God and shall not wish to see anything happen to us that will not also bless our brethren.... You must get rid of selfishness before God can trust you with the keys of heaven. But when self is dead, God will enable you to unlock His treasures, and, as a prince, you shall have power with God and prevail.” Charles Spurgeon Prayer in the Believer’s Life, (Lynnwood, WA: Emerald Books, 1993), p. 112.

“If in the church of God there is a lack of love, we cannot expect prayer to be heard, for God will say, ‘You ask for success. What for? To add more to a community that does not already love itself! You ask for conversions. What! To bring in others to join an unloving community?’ Do you expect God to save sinners whom you do not love and to convert souls whom you do not care a bit about?” Charles Spurgeon, p. 118.

Ellen White:
“One great reason why our brethren and sisters have no more confidence toward God in prayer, is, that nearly all neglect to follow the words of Jesus in preserving harmony between brethren. They allow various wrongs to exist with members of the church, which create bitter envy and strife; and while these differences exist, God neither hears nor answers their prayers, and darkness comes over the mind..... There is a great want of Bible simplicity and genuine love for one another. Love and exaltation of self prevent that humility of mind which should characterize the life of every member of the church. Unless those who come together in church capacity shall observe the rules of Christ which are given them in his word, and which are so simple and reasonable that all may understand, regulating their conduct toward one another by them, there can be no such thing as spiritual strength, harmony, or prosperity in the church; but disaster and ruin will be the result.” Ellen White, Review & Herald April 15, 1880.

“It is not the opposition of the world that most endangers the church of Christ. It is the evils cherished in the hearts of believers that works their most grievous disaster and most surely retards the progress of God’s cause. There is no surer way of weakening spirituality than by cherishing envy, suspicion, faultfinding, and evil surmising. On the other hand, the strongest witness that God has sent His Son into the world is the existence of harmony and union among men of varied dispositions who form His church. This witness it is the privilege of the followers of Christ to bear.... Supreme love for God and unselfish love for one another—this is the best gift that our heavenly Father can bestow.” Ellen White, Acts of the Apostles, p. 547-552.

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All quotations are taken from books in the public domain, or used with permission. All rights reserved. Many of these books are available at your local Christian bookstore, or on-line at www.ccel.org. Compiled by Dan Augsburger (path2prayer@yahoo.com) Commercial use is prohibited. 36a 6/19/02

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