The Sunday Voice: Jeremiah Lanphier


daily text logoNovember 8, 2015

Colossians 4:2

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 


In 1857, Jeremiah Lanphier, a businessman in New York City, prepared a pamphlet containing the text of the reading below. He passed them out widely throughout the city. The first meeting was held on September 23, 1857 at noon. About 12:30 five people showed up from five different denominations. The next week there were fifteen and the week after that 40. Encouraged the group began to do it every day. Within months tens of thousands of people were meeting across the city and later across the country in the same way. This is not the place to report on the extraordinary fruit from this movement other than to note it was the beginning of the last Great Awakening that swept the United States of America. Don’t you think it’s time for the next Great Awakening?

How often shall I pray? As often as the language of prayer is in my heart; as often as I see my need of help; as often as I feel the power of temptation; as often as I am made sensible of any spiritual declension, or feel the aggression of a worldly, earthly spirit…. In prayer, we leave the business of time for that of eternity, and intercourse with God.

(reverse side)

A day Prayer Meeting is held every Wednesday from 12 to 1 o’clock in the Consistory building of the North Dutch Church, corner of Fulton and William Streets. This meeting is intended to give merchants, mechanics, clerks, strangers and businessmen generally an opportunity to stop and call on God amid the perplexities incident to their respective avocations. It will continue for one hour; but it is designed for those who find it inconvenient to remain more than 5 or 10 minutes, as well as for those who can spare a whole hour. Necessary interruption will be slight, because anticipated. Those in haste often expedite their business engagements by halting to lift their voices to the throne of grace in humble, grateful prayer.

See you back here Monday where we will continue our journey through Corinthians.

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J.D. Walt serves as Seedbed’s Sower in Chief.


Farmer. Poet. Theologian. Jurist. Publisher. Seedbed’s Sower-in-Chief.