The True "Social Justice Warrior" By Ed Vitagliano Our culture is awash in calls for…
God Always Answers Prayer
By Dennis Huebshman
People have told me they don’t pray because their past prayers weren’t answered. This is so sad because it shows they don’t know the Father, and don’t have a relationship with Him.
The first time the Bible speaks about people praying to God is found in Genesis 4:26. Throughout the Old Testament, God spoke either directly to people, or through prophets. He made it clear, unless they worshiped Him, or had a repentant heart, He would not honor their petitions. This doesn’t mean He didn’t hear them. The main theme here is God’s Will Be Done.
God gave the law through Moses not to be mean or overbearing, but to show that man could not be righteous without the Father. All sin sacrifices up to the Cross were of a temporary measure and could not permanently atone for sin. The idea of having a Savior take our place as a perfect once-for-all sacrifice was planned at the very beginning of this world.
Sometimes it just seems God has turned a deaf ear to us. In Daniel 10:12-14, it took the angel Gabriel 21 days to respond to Daniel’s plea because He had to get past Satan. The point is God was listening, and the Prayer did get answered – just not as timely as Daniel would have liked.
Jesus gave us the best example of praying. He always deferred to the Father and started His prayers with Praise and Glory to the Father. (Luke 11:1-4) In John 17, Jesus’ prayer is very intimate and personal. He asks to be glorified through His death as was the plan from the very beginning. Also, He prays for His disciples and then ALL believers, which includes you and me. At all times, He gives full authority to the Father.
Prosperity preachers and others like to use John 14: 13-14 as their proof that God is like Santa Claus. They don’t go to verse 15 which says, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” Another verse that is a favorite of theirs is James 4:2 which says we don’t have because we don’t ask. However, again they stop short because verse 3 tells we receive not because we ask wrongly and spend it on our passions. If one prays for something completely selfish or something that will cause harm to others, expect God to answer “NO”. Always pray for the Will of the Father to be done.
Keeping Jesus’ commandments is really quite simple: Love God; Love one another. (Matthew 36:40) In these two commands we have the essence of all 10 commandments given through Moses.
Someone has brought up that Jesus might have had a loss of faith in Gethsemane when He asked the Father to let the cup pass from Him. (Matthew 26: 39-42) We must remember He was fully God, yet He was fully man. No one can adequately explain this yet for God, all things are possible. The human side would have been concerned about all the pain and suffering he would have to endure. However, He did not “demand” that it be by-passed, but just gave His concerns. He gave His will totally to the Father by saying, “Not My will, but Thine be done.” This is a good lesson for us that even though the Father allows trials to take place, it isn’t a problem to let Him know how we feel. He is listening 24/7. Just be ready to leave the outcome to Him as the Savior did.
As for the God-side, Jesus knew for the first time ever, He would be separated from the Trinity, even if just for a brief time. That was almost intolerable. I believe this concerned Him more than the physical pain and suffering He knew was coming, yet as a true servant to the Father, He freely gave Himself for the sacrifice. He knew the significance of this once-for-all act and loved us so much He would have gone through anything for us. Luke 22:43 tells an angel came to provide additional strength for Him. I have no doubt that just one word from Jesus would have brought ALL the angels from Heaven to save Him.
God knows our needs and is willing to take care of them. He does not guarantee taking care of our “greeds”. Many times, He waits for us to ask for our needs just as a parent likes to be asked in order to show they care and provide for us.
As for saying God doesn’t answer, He always does but sometimes the answer is “No”, or “Wait”. His timing is different than ours, but for a believer He always listens. He is always ready to accept a non-believer that is ready to accept His Son, and as two of my constantly used verses say, “ALL who call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Acts 2:21/Romans 10:13) If you feel He has not heard your prayer, take a minute to think about how you are asking your petition. Our God, ABBA Father, wants to hear from you and loves you very much. Don’t use “flowery speech”, just talk to Him as you would in normal conversation. When one starts to talk to the Father regularly, it becomes second nature, and feels awkward to skip this.
Never be ashamed to talk to Him. He has already seen your actions and read your thoughts and knows what needs to be done. He still wants a personal relationship with you and your faith will grow stronger with each prayer. (Philippians 1: 20-21) Call on Him today. We are not guaranteed tomorrow, but we are guaranteed He will be there for you, if asked!