Prayer: Prayer with Believing (#907)
Today we’ll continue our series on prayer; looking at prayer and believing. This has been a very interesting topic through the history Christianity, because as you all know from the various people you know, the classes you’ve taken, and the things you have experienced in your own life that there are two basic approaches to prayer; there are those that feel God is totally in charge of everything so that everything is predestined so you can pray, but it really doesn’t matter because God is going to do what He to do wants anyway. So there is that extreme, where we have virtually no control and then there is the other extreme, which I like to call the power of positive thinking approach where we can make up anything we want, and tell God you’ve got to do it. So that is the other extreme, that’s where you have two countries in a war and they both believe God is on there side and they both believe they’re going to win, but that doesn’t make much sense because it doesn’t make much sense for God to want them to annihilate each other (although there are a couple of records like that in the old testament, but that was a bunch of unbelievers killing each other off).
So you have these two extremes and as usual the truth is in the middle. God actually gives us freedom of will, our lives are not predestined, yet we can’t tell God to do something He’s not willing to do. And I think you know this story that I’ve told from time to time about a wonderful believer, a sincere Christian woman about 30 years ago who was so fed up the political situation in Washington, which is not uncommon I realize, but she was so fed up with it that se was praying for a large crevasse to open up and swallow up the entire city of Washington and it would all go away, and her problems would be solved. And whether or not you believe that is a good idea and whether or not it would solve anything is one issue, but the bigger issue is what gave her the right to pray for something like that. Did she have any right to just make up her mind that she didn’t like the politics in Washington so everybody should be swallowed up in a great crevasse and disappear? We’ll as we’ll see in the scriptures today, we can pray, we should pray, we can believe to receive deliverance, but it has to be according to God’s will. And unless God gave this woman revelation that she could get rid of the city of Washington, she had no right to expect that of God, she could ask God for it, but to expect it or demand it, she had no right unless God told her that that was the thing that had to be done. And so the thing we’ll see is that we have to start with what God promises and then we have to pray and believe that God will do what He has said. And it is just that simple.
Start with what God has said is available or what He wants you to do or what He says He will do for you, which can be summed up by saying what’s available and then you pray and believe that God will carry through on what He’s promised. But don’t pray, well you can ask God for anything you want, but for instance: I can walk into a Chevy dealer and ask if they’ll sell me a hamburger. There’s a very slight chance that it is customer appreciation day and they have a grill going out back and they will sell me a hamburger, but chances are I’m not going to get a hamburger at the Chevy dealer. Just like if I walked into to a hamburger joint and asked them to buy a new car; it is possible that someone on the staff has a car out back he’s selling that has a for sale sticker, then sure I can get a car there, but it’s not likely that I’m going to get a new car at a burger joint. You have to go for what is available. Burger joints have all kinds of burgers and occasionally some soups, salads, and milkshakes, but they’re a place to great burgers. Chevy dealers are a place to buy cars, but don’t try to buy a Ford there, they probably won’t have one, unless it is in the used car lot. That is just not the way things work. So we have to know what is available from God, we have to know what He’s promised, we have to know what He said He’s willing to do then we have to be absolutely firm in our prayer and believing that God will bring it to pass.
So let’s get going here. Now that I’ve told you what I’m going to tell you, we’ll go see if the scriptures support what I said or if I made it all up. Please turn to I John chapter 5, verse 13…
Taught by Bruce Mahone 20161113, All rights reserved.
Verse Listing and Notes
I John 5:13-15 If we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us
James 5:16-18 He prayed earnestly that it might not rain
I Kings 17:1-18:1 The Word of the Lord – No Rain, Rain
John 5:24, 38, 44-47 He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life
John 9:35-38 Dost thou believe on the Son of God?
II Chron. 20 They prayed. God sent further information, and deliverance
Mat. 21:19-22 Whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive
Mark 11:13-24 When ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them
Phil. 4:19 My God shall supply all your need
907 – Prayer – Prayer with Believing
Prayer: Prayer with Believing (#907)