Prayer

by Jannie

Forget the empty recipes, rituals, tradition, the ceremonial hype filled with emotion and show.  Also consider the papers entitled “Intercession” and “The Lord’s Prayer” on this website.

Be cautious of books filled with steps “how to” and prescriptions of “prayer-worriers” with no or little real result to show. We must be open, humble, and honest before our omniscient Father.  He lives [is Life eternal] and the first important “lesson” is to actually hear His Voice – then act on it [have faith in Him].

The OT way of praying [approaching] God the Father today would be an insult to Jesus Christ!  David’s approach in Ps 51:10-12 is not valid today after what Jesus Christ overpaid for us all (Heb 8:13; 9:8-12,24-28,14; 10:1-26,35,38; Eph 3:20; 4:24; 2 Cor 5:17 – hence Mt 9:17; Lk 9:62; Eph 4:11-25).  “If it be your will” is a false humility because it denies Jesus Christ (Jn 14:9-15; Mk 11:24) and who we are supposed to be (Gen 1:26-28; Heb 2:8; Phil 4:13).  Consider the logical absurdity of the statement “If it be your will”.

Contemplate the paper “The Will” on www.gospel-truth.co.za for a discussion on God’s will.  You should know God’s will if you comply with Rom 8:14; Jn 4:24; 14:26.  That is, if you know Jer 29:11; Is 5:18-21; 54:14-17 and 1 Jn 3:22; 5:14-15.  To say “If it be your will”, really says nothing.  If you mean to say (a) that God must only allow your request if it will not be bad [“against His will”], you’re stating the obvious and are not instructing God at all. (b) If you mean to say to God that He is free to allow only what He wants or even more than what you ask, or at a different time and place, if it is good, as He sees fit; you’re again stating the obvious superfluously and probably ignorant of the principles mentioned in Scriptures such as Mt 6:8; 8:10; Mk 11:24; Jn 14:12-15; Rom 5:5; Eph 1:3,4,19-21; 3:19-20; 1 Pet 2:24; 2 Pet 1:3; especially Js 1:5-8.  If we’re in need, we can [may] be specific with God [in prayer], and as a matter of fact, should act on Mt 10:8 (Jn 17:20).  We should stop begging God for what He already provided (Jn 19:30; 1 Pet 2:24; Eph 1:3-6 and so on)!  Why distrust God (His Word, promise fulfilled – Jn 19:30; Heb 8:13; Prov 18:21; Dt 19:30)?  Is it because of Mk 7:13; 12:24? Have you remotely contemplated Mt 8:26; 12:37 with 2 Tim 1:7 and Jn 4:24?  This should become clearer as we consider these thoughts in this paper with 2 Cor 10:5 in mind.  Perhaps later “The Testimony” on this website as well, but do not skip the Scriptures!

Note at Mt 26:39.  People that pray “If it be your will”, probably (a) talk blindly after others without having contemplated this, and (b) totally misunderstand Jesus in Mt 26:26,39 and Lk 22:42.  Observe that in Lk 22:41 Jesus went only ‘a stone’s throw’ away (within hearing distance).  It is thus entirely possible that Jesus was not asking God the Father for a way out (Eph 1:2-23; Col 1:8-12-15), but made a point clear to them in Lk 22:41 – as well as us (Jn 17:20) – to remember, namely that there is no other way for mankind to be reconciled to God (Jn 14:6; Acts 4:12; 1 Tim 2:5; and Jn 10:9 with Rev 3:8; 4:1-2 with Heb 10:13-14).  If Jesus as Son of Man was looking for a way out he would probably rather have asked softly [in the spirit] than out loud contradicting Himself in Lk 14:27-35; Mt 20:22-23; 23:25-28; Jn 18:11! No, Jesus was giving a demonstration, a proof that becomes even more plausible when contemplating just Jn 11:41-42-45; 14:6; Acts 4:12; 1 Cor 1:23-2:2.  The fact that Jesus always gets what he asks (Jn 11:42; Js 1:6-8; Mk 11:24; 1 Jn 2:1-2), even Mk 11:25-26 with Lk 23:34 (Heb 4:15; 9:14,26,28; 2 Cor 5:21; 1 Pet 2:21-24; 1 Jn 1:7; 3:5,8), shows that if God The Father had another way He would have heard Jesus’ “request” in Lk 22:42.  But this was not an attempted shunning or evasion by Jesus but Jesus demonstrating that Acts 4:12 is absolutely true.  Nowhere else can we hear Jesus pray vaguely “If it be Your will”.  Instead, we find only examples and demonstrations of Jesus and His followers performing miracles with authority such as stated in Acts 9:34.

Note (b) on Lk 22:41-42. The agony (Lk 22:43-44) that Jesus went through is well beyond our grasp. The wrath of God poured out on Jesus Christ – on our behalf for all times (1 Thess 5:9; Heb 10:14) – is totally beyond our complacent blind self-righteousness. So, what we can [should] learn from just this passage in Luke is likewise probably way over our self-inflated modern conceited heads. Not only Judas, or Peter, was traitors of Jesus Christ; for even those found asleep betrays Him! Carefully contemplate here Lk 22:45-46 with Mt 25:1-12 (7:15-23) and Rev 3:12,20-21; 21:7 (Rom 8:14). Oh God! Indeed Prov 20:13 (Jn 6:48 with “The Testimony”)!!! May we wake up from our hollow religious slumber!

God is a perfect Father and loves us genuinely, and wants us to love Him genuinely (1 Jn 4:8).  He hence wants a relationship.  He is a Person – He loves, can be grieved, and hates evil (Ps 101:3-8; Prov 8:13; 11:20,21; 16:5; Rom 12:9 with Rev 21:27!)…  To try and impress God, is not knowing Him at all.  To try and inform Him of offense we have taken and wrong done to us, is not knowing Him at all.  To only “talk” to Him when we want something, is not knowing Him at all!

Note at 1 Chron 4:10. Many a Christian loves to quote Jabez, especially those fluent in Christianese. Perhaps then also consider Dt 5:21; Eph 5:5; Jn 3:3; Mt 6:33; Js 4:2-3; Rom 8:28? We should perhaps be careful with talking after other people without having accurate knowledge of the context or the One we are talking to (Rom 10:1-2; Mt 6:5-7). The other papers such as “The Gospel” on this website expand on this.

Note at Mt 6:5.  Jesus says hypocrites love to pray! Most church-goers speak of their “family” of believers, of their “brothers” and “sisters”, as one body in Christ with God as their Father. This however, will hardly be more than speaking Christianese when we observe a different result in practice where help is held back due to plain selfishness.  Take the example of a congregation’s family that gets into difficulty financially. Most will then go for the cop-out to religiously (Mt 6:4-8) “pray” for them without putting their money [help] where their mouths are (Mt 15:6-9).  It will be a cop-out because God will not do what we are supposed to do!  God is a perfect Father and will not rise up useless children.  Reconsider Jn 15:1-5, and bear fruit!  Note, with Mt 6:3, that the genuine unselfish deeds [that expect no selfish gain in any way], was unaware of when they – in effect – helped the Lord (Mt 25:32-40).  Ponder as well, Mt 25:41-44 with Mt 7:15-29; 15:6-9.

 

In Jesus’ name

Here, we have to be careful to not be dull and imagine that we are reciting an “abracadabra” in parrot-like fashion!  “In Jesus’ name” probably comes from Scriptures like Jn 14:14,16; 16:23.  Consider that “in His name” very possibly means “in His authority” (Jn 1:12,13; Eph 1:3); in other words, Who He is and what He stands for and what He has successfully accomplished [overpaid] for us today.  A living image [memorial, mature son], speaking His Words, revealing His power, His Light, His Life right here on earth.  So, “in Jesus’ name” does not mean you must necessarily repeat the words “In Jesus’ name”!  You often hear religious people recite rhymes, even ask “… if it be Your will… [to heal!]”, totally ignorant to the shocking fact that they are totally under law (is in self-righteousness), yet end the prayer with “In Jesus’ name”.  Often they should actually have said “In my own name”, or “in Moses’ name” to be speaking the truth.  Amen?  The paper called “Intercession” expands on this.

Often, before a meal, people start a prayer with, “Thank You for the food we are about to receive”, then ends with “… and make us sincerely [truly] thankful for it, in Jesus’ name, Amen”!  Think about it, will you?  God [love that does not manipulate] must make you thankful (after you said you were, and what is worse, are you in fact saying that unless God makes you thankful will you not be –truly [sincerely] – thankful! Why else would He have to, still as you’re talking, make you thankful?)??  And then not only make you thankful, but make you sincerely thankful?  And this is in Jesus name???  You realize that to add the instruction to make you “sincerely” thankful implicates that you are the source of righteousness at that moment reminding God not to make you “insincerely thankful”!  Then, when we point this blasphemous absurdity out, the typical religious reaction is to mumble “but God knows what I mean” (again missing it; that God does – unfortunately for the religious play-actors – know exactly what they mean!… Hear Jesus in Mt 6:5-8; 7:21-23; 12:31-37; 15:6-9…).  Please, let us use our brains and be real and realize Who we are talking to!  So, instead of reciting dull phrases such as the preposterous “make us truly thankful” or some monotonous repetitive rhyme; rather keep your eyes open (!) and from your heart remind yourself about the context of 1 Cor 10:31 and Jn 6:31-50,53-58.  Remind yourself about Jn 4:23-24; 14:26 and Rom 8:14 – remind yourself that just as food and drink is supposed to be nutritious to your body, should you not forget that God [Love, Holy Spirit] is the only One Who provides [provided] what is good (Eph 1:3-14,18-23) for your body, soul and spirit and acknowledge this fact.  Only in Christ are we blessed (Eph 1:3).  Amen?

Often also, during this prayer before a meal, we hear “We think of those less fortunate…” or something to that effect. Is this then an attempt to just inform God Almighty to note our empathy? Hopefully then, will we remember this when we next stand at a cash register paying for a trolley load full of stuff with a poor person next in line shyly trying to buy a meager something to eat with obviously too little change… Think of the difference it would make if every able person would help pay for the next “less fortunate” in line?  And, according to Mt 6:1-4…  Remember also, that Jesus pointed out how hypocrites love to pray (Mt 6:5)…

What was Jesus saying in Mt 6:13?  (Js 1:13).  See also example # 22,23 in the paper “Apparent Controversies in The Bible” by the same author, if you will. The daily Bread is Christ [Jn 1:4; 5:37-47;11:25-26] inside of us permanently (Jn 4:24; 6:27-63). If this Bread be in us continuously [“daily”], we will not have to be lead “in temptation” [out from it].  It is not God that will lead us astray; we must not wonder off when [spiritually thoughtless] on our own (Phil 3:9) and so it is prudent to ask Father for protection from the evil one (Js 1:5, 6-8…4:7!)!  Consider here also “The Covenant and the Law” and “Mixing Old and New” by the same author.  Self-righteousness and the resultant unforgiveness is our [own mind] enemy.

Don’t be so ignorant as to sit next to a car with a flat tyre asking God – in Jesus’ name (!) – to fix the wheel!  Yes, all things are possible to God, but why would He as a perfect Father let you become utterly useless on earth by doing all for [lazy, pathetic] you?  There are many things we have to do on this earth that He gave us!… Fact is, God will not be an accomplice to us being self-centred and seeking pity as helpless beings.

 

A good relationship would at the very least have persons talking to each other [habitually, often] as if they are real.  And not only for selfish reasons, but to just share [acknowledge] something beautiful in your day. When you understand God’s Love, mercy and unconditional grace, you will serve Him better accidentally, than you would ever do intentionally.  When you understand that by talking with Him, you will, in His presence see more blessings [prosperity, protection], accidentally, than you would ever do intentionally.   By talking to Him, like you would to someone you have a good relationship with, will bring you more in His presence.  Talk to your Savior, your Lord, your Guide, your Teacher, your Friend, your Father.  Mostly, just talk to Him about this wonderful life, show some appreciation of the magnificent painting you are living in.  Don’t be blunt [obtuse, dull, haughty] – tell [admit to] Him how wonderful you see His beautiful Handiwork is!  We were created to pleasure Him, so stop trying to be a do-ing and be a be-ing.  Be His child.  Enjoy your humour [joy, wit, sharp appreciative observation, peace, admiration]; your perseverance [faith, trust]; enjoy Gal 5:22-26; Phil 4:6-8; and so on.  Enjoy the everlasting Life He prepared and provided for us (2 Cor 5:14-21).  Show faith [trust, acceptance] in His Word and promises.  Read His letters, hear Him.

 

Lengthy, “technical” prayer is likely to be artificial and most likely less effective than an honest “help”!  For a discussion on intercession, see the paper entitled “Intercession” by the author.

 

For long, Mt 7:19-26 with Mt 12:31-32 was unresolved for me.  I have heard good-sounding messenges and preachers expounding and distorting and what not, still I knew in my spirit something around these scriptures was unexplained to me.  Lk 6:46; Mt 11:27-30; Prov 1:7; Jn 16:1-3!  Watch out for the religious!

Get in the presence of God, talk to Him, and enjoy a real relationship that sees results!

 

In context, Mt 12:14-45 tells of the absurd phenomena [especially amongst the religious] of calling what is of God, as if it is of Satan (Is 5:18-21).  Father, Son and Spirit is not the destroyer!  You know this?  Do you think God teaches man something through sickness or death (Ex 15:26)?  But, there is a more subtle trap of falling for unscriptural teaching through ignorance, through basic lack of interest [love] for Him above all else.  Jesus gave Eph 4:11 to get v. 12-25…  When we passively get into the spot of Rom 10:17.  In other words, people cannot believe what they have not heard (read).  Who is to blame for this ignorance?

 

To know His Voice (Jn 10, note v 4,27), means we should be able to discern (Jn 14:24-31).  This “know” is very intimate and personal (Gen 4:1; Mt 7:19-24; Jn 10:11-20; even 2 Pet 1:3-4; Jn 17:3…).  Amazing!

 

Have you memorized verses like Rom 8:28; Phil 4:13 but dare not say reality looks different?

Forget the theology and rassionalization, is there nothing you think would be better different?

Come up here, be real – your Father, your Brother (Heb 2) and Lord, Your Holy Spirit Who is your Wisdom, your Counsellor, your Teacher, your Guide; He is real!  Is 1:18-20.

 

Understand once for all, that prayer is not nagging God!

 

It is quite possible that we completely misunderstand how to pray more accurately, because of our indoctrination with religious concepts.  Three perceptions that are misunderstood in church today, are supplication; persistency (Lk 18:1); and the will of God.  For the latter, read the paper entitled “The Will” by the author.  We will do well to remember that we can never surprise God, so forget condemnation.  Be inspired, convinced and encouraged [in Christ, Rom 8:29-39], do not feel condemned.  For God so loved the world, that He

 

Note at Col 4:2.  This “prayer” actually refers to a prayer-life, as in habitual and multiple different prayers, and not a single prayer that is being repeated until we can get God to change His will to our [carnal, fleshly] lust and greed.  If you truly believe that you get what you ask (1 Jn 5:15), and that God hears you first time around – as a matter of fact, that He knew what you were about to ask before the foundation of the earth – you would never repeat the same request twice.  You would know that Mt 6:7 refers to 1 Kings 18:25-29.  You would trust Jesus (Jn 14:12-15;  Eph 2:18; Mt 21:21,22).  No, each individual request is once [in trust], but then you guard over that request with thanksgiving.  Being thankful before the world sees results is the faith spoken of in Heb 11:1; 2 Cor 5:7.  This is guarding against what Js 1:6-8 warns us against.  You could not have received without having said thanks [acknowledge, accept, appropriate]!  This is showing at least three aspects in this faith:

1. Your intellectual cognizance and acceptance of historically accurate facts about Jesus Christ

2. Your reliance [trust] on God’s Word [promises, precepts, principles]

3. Your personal relationship, continuously and habitually living your faith (Js 2:15-26)

4. But, this have to be enlightened with a full and accurate knowledge of Jesus Christ (1 Jn 2:4.  Note that “His commandments” here refer to the teachings/precepts of Jesus Christ, not the 10 Commandments that Moses had to give to the Israelites to show them what Rom 3:20 (Gal 5:4,18) means – see the paper “The Covenant and the Law” for a fuller exegesis on this subject and Gal 3:19)!

 

Unbelievers cannot say “thank you” prior to a visual manifestation.  Seeing is not believing, it is accepting what one would not believe.  The world has wishful thinking; we have faith in the one true [Triune] God.

Believers can give unlimited praise and thanks to God before physically seeing results, in faith (Rom 8:13!!).

 

Of course believers will understand that we can never surprise our omniscient God.  Consider Heb 13:8; Jn 1:1-4.  There are no files or cases you have to re-open with God.  You simply believe God that, for instance, Gal 3:16,25-29; Eph 2:4-13; and Rom 8:17,29-39 is absolutely true.  Remember Heb 7:25; 1 Tim 2:5; 2 Cor 5:17-21.  We are not approaching an angry God in the NT – Rom 5:5!  Believe Heb 4:11,16; 9:24; 10:10-14; 11:6; 9; also 1 Thess 5:9.  We must be careful of the mindset (Mk 7:13) that the OT ways are applicable to us as NT believers in the finished [successfully completed] work of Jesus Christ (Heb 8:13; 9:8-15).

 

Some words [incorrect and false concepts] that we can do well considering again, are the following:

–      Dedication” or “consecration”. A request to hear His Voice  – Mk 14:32-36; Jn 10:10,27,28

–    “Agreement”.  Two or more praying to the same God in unison is misconstrued by many.  Note at Mt 18:19, 20 that the context there is incorrectly interpreted by most institutions that claims it says we must pray with help from other people to have more power or effect. This is throwing your authority in Christ away (Gal 1:6-12; Mt 15:6-9)!  Where did Jesus ask for help in prayer?  What Jesus was teaching in Mt 18:19-20, in context, was unity and harmony among believers (Eph 4:1-6; Jn 15:12,17; 1 Jn 3:7-11), to the extent of Mt 5:21-26 (Mt 6:12,14-15; 18:21-35!); hence Mt 15:6-9; Mt 7:14-23!!! Observe Jesus’ words about His [for them shortly] accomplished work on His cross in Jn 15:23-28 (Jn 14:10-15).  Agreement as help from other people in prayer just shows a frail faith and uncertainty [lack of authority and understanding (Js 1:6-8!)].  Elijah was one in prayer against 950 prophets of Baal and Asherah (“who eat at Jezebel’s table”) at Mount Carmel (1 Ki 18:19-29. Compare then the NT re-born Christian in Heb 9:8-15; 10:9-23)…  Carefully and prayerfully combine Js 5:16c, that says that tremendous power is released by the prayer of a [singular] righteous man, with 1 Jn 4:4 (Jn 14:17,23,26; Rev 21:3; 1 Jn 3:7; Rom 8:29-39 + Phil 3:9)!!!  If Jesus Christ is your righteousness, it is His prayer in agreement with you (Rom 8:26-39; 1 Jn 2:1-3); hence 1 Pet 2:24 (Jn 19:30; Rev 16:17; Eph 1:3)!!! Reconsider Mt 6:10 with Jn 14:6; 15:5-7-12; 1 Tim 2:5…

–     “Petitioning” (“faith”).  When we know what we want, is already OK with God [even a promise of God] – 1 Joh 5:14,15; Mk 11:22-24; Heb 4:16.  We appropriate by accepting in faith (trust)

–     “Binding”Not people, but ungodliness, hardness of heart, unbelief – Mt 16:19; 18:18,19; 2 Cor 10:5

–     “Loosing”.  Opposing Satan’s strategies [depression, confusion, lies] – Mt 18:18; 2 Cor 10:4-6; Rev1:5.  Be free [loose] in God’s love and providence, fellowship with Jesus, and stop “trying”!

–     “Intercession”.  Remember the OT and NT way (1 Tim 2:5; Heb 7:25; 9:14,24; 2 Cor 5:17-21)

–     “Supplication”.  Not “nagging” (Mt 6:7), but as in “supply” of Holy Spirit.  Some refer to Lk 8:41, 49-56, saying it is repetitive asking of the same thing, but this contradicts Jesus’ teaching and example.  The continuous supply (Phil 1:19) of the omniscient Holy Spirit is far more powerful.

–     “In the Spirit”.  This is Rom 8:26-28; 1 Cor 14:2-4,16,39; Jude 20.  The following expand on this…

 

Before we take a closer look at Rom 8:28, know this concerning the speaking in tongues:

(1)   If you still deny this as a reality, or want to reason it away, or choose to trust in powerless words of false teachers who steal your sonship – then for now, contemplate 1 Cor 14:2,4,14,22,39; Mk 16:17; and Jude 20.  Then read on prayerfully through this discussion on Rom 8:28.  Also, know that Is 28:10-16 and 2 Cor 3 go hand in hand – you are either under the law [a covenant, law, idea of self-righteousness] or you accept [receive] the Testament that Jesus left you because He was buried.  Jn 14:1-2 leads to v. 23-26.  Is 60:14; Mt 5:14; Rev 21:2 – you are [a part, a place, a living stone] in that city on a hill of whom Christ is the cornerstone.  See the short paper on “Gifts”. Note that this “tongue”, just as your “mother tongue”, cannot be the monotonous repetition of only a few similar [restricted] sounds on every different occasion… and, as mentioned in the short paper “gifts”, nor is it a hysterical gibberish that attempts to fake a presence of God by hyping people [oneself] into a mere euphoric feeling or frenzy in a type of sentimentality that in fact only utilizes – misuses – emotions that is none else than eros in its broader sense, used often by heathens in an “erotic” [emotional and self-centered, self-pleasing show of false religion].  Study 1 Cor 14 carefully, even verses 4,5,39 (with Js 1:5)… We are not to lose our reason in emotion [eros, self-centeredness]…

(2)   If you are content with just speaking in tongues, without application, be blessed by reading this revelation and then grasp the context of Rom 8:26 (v. 31-34) with Jn 11.

 

Jesus probably have prayed a specific prayer concerning Lazarus at an earlier stage, because of His reference thereto in Jn 11:41-42.  He did not repeat that prayer (Jn 11:41-42; Mt 6:7). When was it?  It is also clear that Jesus was teaching them (and us, Jn 17:20), and certainly Jesus has demonstrated Father’s glory, and by example, how to pray!  Jesus is the One Who sent us Holy Spirit (Jn 14:23-26; 16:7), and HE is mentioned in Rom 8:26.  The question is, when did Jesus pray this powerful prayer, and why does it seems to be hidden [to the natural]?  Remember also, prayer certainly can be immediate (whilst talking) – Jn 17:1-5,20-26…

 

2 Cor 4:2-6 (the god of “this world” is referring to “this world” of law, of self-righteousness, and those listening to the father of all lies mentioned in Jn 8:31-47; even 2 Cor 11:14-15).  Take note here that Jesus was talking to religious Jews who believed He was the Messiah.  Then 1 Cor 2:12-16.  And those still telling you “speaking in tongues” is unscriptural, read 1 Cor 14:39, and ask this false teacher to explain to you why Jesus would send Holy Spirit to indwell you, if not for being the only means of communicating directly with Him, especially when your reletatively new language fails to verbalate, articulate, or accurately express spirit.

 

Now then, when Jesus approached the grave of Lazarus, the Amplified Bible [John] says He was deeply moved in spirit and troubled (Jn 11:33).  This was very unlikely to be carnal emotion (self-centred). Verse 38 says, “Now Jesus, again sighing repeatedly deeply disquieted, approached the tomb…”.  Some manuscripts even use descriptions like “snorting”, or “deep groaning”.  In a natural way, this sounds strange.

 

Verse 41-42 most likely refers to these utterances and groaning in the Spirit (Rom 8:26)!

 

Carefully read Rom 8:21-26 again.  Understand the Son of Man was in need often (Heb 5:7; Mt 6:11 – “give us today our daily bread…”).  Also know Jesus Christ is the First born[1] (Heb 2) that brings “many sons to glory” (v 10).  “Christ” = “Messiah” = “anointed”= glory= power of God.  Bare in mind Jesus’ words in Jn 4:10,14,19-24,31-34; 6:46-68.

 

Carefully read John 5:28, and then together in parallel the following three parts of Scripture: Mt 27:50-53; Mk 15:37-39; Lk 23:45-46.  Now understand that “day(s) of His flesh” in Heb 5:6-7; points to the crucifix of Jesus Christ (Rom 8:3,4; Heb 10:19-21; even Jn 1:14 with 1 Cor 2:8).  Rom 8:3 leads to vs. 26-28, 29-39, does it not?  Then see Ez 9:6; and realize that Is 42:6-14 also leads to Is 53:11-12!  Note that “travail” here refers to [a woman, bride] giving birth.  Jesus Christ interceded for us, His Body, His Zion, His Israel (people), His Bride.  Powerful!  Jesus on that cross, uttered in a [very] loud voice what He could not utter in articulated [known] speech, and He so gave “birth” to the salvation of all of mankind who is wise enough to take Him seriously in trust [faith], believing Him – Jesus Christ, Son of Man, Son of God (Jn 1:13).  Jesus gave thanks to our Father for that broken Bread – His Body broken for us on His cross!  See Jn 4:24…

 

Apparently Charles Finney has attended only a few prayer meetings in his congregation, when he proclaimed that they are either praying to a dead god (in repetition), or he hears them not, or they have only empty and powerless rituals [no results].  He then apparently went deep into the woods and said, “God, if you exist, show Yourself to me”.  Next he describes being overwhelmed with indescribable waves [awareness] of love and started to groan and moan and make load noises because he had no words to articulate this prayer that was birthed in him.  Finney deeply felt for the iniquity and prevailing sin in his hometown.  This prayer in the Spirit had a remarkable effect.  Apparently, when he appeared hours later, people were falling out in the Spirit and felt convicted as he entered the town.  Revival broke out.  Later the same pattern would be observable whenever Charles Finney would pray in the Spirit (only noises audible) outside a town or city, and father Nash (his assistant) would stay inside this place until he would see the results, then went to call Finney who would enter and harvest souls! Question: why did “father Nash” had to call Charles Finney?

 

Remember that God initiated all good, not any human.  Again consider NT intercession…

So, perhaps we would do well to re-examine our prayers:  are we moaning, or are we groaning?  God is moved by faith, not “prayer”.  See Ps 5:1; 2 Cor 5:2,4; Acts 7:34…   Allow me to interrupt here by pointing back to this testimony about Charles Finney.  I believe it to be very dangerous ground to be asking, “God, if You are there, reveal Yourself…”.  This question could be the wrong departure point and a precarious line of reasoning, considering Jesus in Jn 14:9-15,23-26.  Jesus has most certainly successfully revealed the Father throughout His ministry [His whole earthly life], but especially on His cross, even His ministry and teaching.

 

Jesus was not angry, but obviously displeased with the fact that His disciples did not recognize Him in Lk 24:15 [although He was with them – for Josh 1:5; Heb 13:5c is for those knowing Him, Jn 10:26-29].  But did you note why they failed to recognize [perceive, see, experience] Him?  They reasoned (Lk 24:15), not the Godly way, but trying to utilise their intellects only.  This is what educated fools do as well (Ps 24:1; 53:1; Rom 1:18-20).  Have you noticed the connection (of Lk 24:15, 25-27,32) to Jer 20:9 and Heb 12:29?

 

Let’s be sure to always open up our hearts to His Word, not reasoning.  A good example is the Jewish religionists who reasoned (from Scripture!) that the Messiah would come from Bethlehem, not Nazareth, and so rejected Jesus from Nazareth.  But we know their reasoning (from Scripture) was incorrect.  Jesus was born in Bethlehem, but grew up in Nazareth.  Amazing that facts so plain can become such a big obstacle.  And why?  Reasoning and self-righteous pride (Rom 1:21-22; 1 Cor 1:18-21; 1 Tim 6:20; Col 2:3,8; Prov 14:6; 3:5; Rev 22:11-15; and so on…)!

 

This reply Jesus gave those who did not recognise Him, although they have been with Him for how long prior to His resurrection (Lk 24:25), is significant.  Well over three hundred prophecies were fulfilled by Jesus Christ, so Lk 24:27 could have taken hours.  Still, only when He eventually broke bread with them (v 30), did they wake up (v 31), and then He vanished (v 31)!  Have you had that experience?  You should read Jn 6:63 with 2 Cor 11:14 here.  Remembering Heb 11:6, we will see that we can set ourselves up for deceiving spirits when asking, “God, if you are there, show Yourself…”!  Why?  Well, look again at Lk 16:29-31.  People that are perpetually asking for God to give them revelation and to reveal Himself [spectacularly so that the senses – and unbelieving brain – can be convinced], just reveal the place they are:  They want God to give what He has already provided perfectly – His Word, the Truth and Way, Jesus Christ.

 

Professing Christians in despair or depression, weighs an emotional [self-centred] state up to the glory of God (2 Cor 4:14-18; Heb 12:1; principle in Phil 3:18-19)!   Jesus never lowered Himself to carnal mindedness of despair and depression, hugging them and expressing sympathy – He always was above, not below, showing how to exercise dominion in compassion [that acts Godly, lifting people up, rebuking that spirit and that unbelief and distrust and emotional blindness, not helping them to wallow in “self”].  This is very much the case with false feelings of being devoid of God.  He has already revealed Himself, but our choice – yes our choice – to be ignorant about His Truth [Word], caused us to end up with a sudden shocking realization:  “Hey, I can’t recognise Jesus!”  This is a time to be careful that we don’t also need a Judas to reveal Him by a betraying kiss.  So then we start with Rom 8:11 and rethink Heb 11:6 and go from there, or wherever, as long as we start in HIS WORD (Jn 1:14).  Oh, how feeble we can be in our educated, carnally blinded minds!  How impossible to accept everlasting Life when we can’t get our feeble minds past afterlife!

 

So this is the point:  take care to examine the own heart first before challenging God, or setting “desperate” queries before Him, all while we were plain too lazy and blind [unbelieving and unfaithful and non-committed] to recognise [even honestly study] His Word!  He has been there all along.  It is not He that must reveal Himself, the peels are likely to be over our own eyes.  Beware of minds [ideas, books] of other men.

 

Num 23:19; Gen 12:3; 22:17; Gal 3:29 (Heb 13:5).

 

Consider momentarily the manifestation of Jesus Christ (on earth):

 

–      First, the Son of Man (through Mary) at ‘the fullness of time’ (Heb 9:11-28) and at ‘the end of the world’ (Heb 9:26).  The fact that the prophet Simeon openly addressed Mary in Joseph’s presence while the father in a Jewish family had strong pre-eminence, also reveals the virgin birth Holy Spirit [God] was the Father, not Joseph (Lk 1:35). But Jesus was born from a woman (mankind, “man”) to legally enter the natural realm in order to represent man and simultaneously present God to man.  He was to be called the Son of God later, when He had Himself baptized.  Although no repentance of sin was required (Baptizo of repentance) by Jesus – but from law-teachings, He was to be made all sin on that cross!  No Jesus on a cross, is just a cross (Jn 3:14; 8:28; 12:34; 1 Cor 1:23-2:2).  Not a dove, not nothing, but JESUS CHRIST on the cross!  Know what happened THERE!

–      Then, the Son of law (Lk 2:42,  bar-mitsvâh = “son-of-law”) – Heb 2:7-8; Col 3:1-4; Eph 1:6.  He had to overcome the law (figtree-rulers) without eating of that tree, to redeem us, to be the legally perfect Son of God, the perfect Son of Man, demonstrated. Hear Jesus in Mt 13:11-13,36-43; 18:6

–      Then, Son of God – Mt 3:16,17.  Man could not kill Jesus the Christ anymore, He had to lay down His Life (Jn 14:6; 15:13; 1 Jn 3:16).  Prior to this Jesus was apparently liable to die (Mt 2:13-15; 19-23; but now, despite numerous attempts where the religious rulers seeked to kill Jesus, they failed.  He just “walked away”.  So on the cross, Jesus committed His soul to the Father so it could not die in hell where it descended into – 1 Pet 3:18-20; Ps 25:20; 86:13 (Js 5:10; Acts 10:43; 3:18; 1 Sam 16:13), His Spirit went to heaven, and His body [only] died (Heb 9:16-18).  Only His body was in the tomb.  When the Spirit re-united His body with His Spirit and soul, He walked out of the tomb.  This is remarkably similar to Gen 2:7.  Also Gen 2:15 – Jesus was placed there, the Last Adam (1 Cor 15:45; Rom 5:12-15).  Also the second Adam [no other in between].  From one garden to a next, one dooming, another saving, yes, Jn 3:14-21! In offense man fell, in everlasting Love Jesus won.  Note that His body had to be buried for us to inherit a New Testament (Heb 8:13; 9:16-18) – hence only in Him (Acts 4:12)! Rom 8:2,11 is expanded on in the paper “The Testimony” – consider and contemplate it for probably the biggest revelation you can get…

–      Then, Jesus Christ the Lord, after His resurrection, maximum authority, Giver of eternal Life

(Mt 28:18; Jn 11:26; 12:50; Also, Jn 16:9!…); and our Intercessor (1 Jn 2:1; Jn 16:24; Heb 9:24)…

 

So when Jesus was approaching the grave of Lazarus, He was probably praying in the Spirit.  And He is our First born [resurrected], our Brother, our First Fruit, our example that we must re-present.

 

So, is there immense power in praying in the Spirit?  Is Mt 6:6-8 perhaps a little more fresh? Try 1 Cor 14;  Mk 16:17; and Jude 20 again for size.  Grasp Heb 12:2; 4:1-2.  Glory to God!  Thank You Jesus!

 

He is One God [is God], but for the purpose of understanding better, consider the following picture: 

First, His Spirit, deep calls unto deep (Ps 42:7); then we must know His Voice (Jn 8:42-52; 10:10,27-28) and trust Him [believe, Jn 11:15] and expect Him to be the Rewarder of those who diligently seek Him[2].  Then His Spirit takes this to our Intercessor (Rom 8:27; Heb 7-9), Who prays for us perfectly before the Father.  Christ Jesus is our Intercessor, not accuser!  Then Father so becomes a Partner in our labor (as in birth, not “works” of self-righteousness) – Rom 8:28.  Then we start to fulfil [manifest] Rom 8:19 ( v 29-30), and v 31-37 is true!!  Then, after submitting to God, can we exercise our authority here on earth (Gen 1:26-28; Jn 11:42-44).  Jesus Christ demonstrated first oneness (Mt 5:16; Jn 5:19-47; 10:27-30; 14:7-27), then the authority as a Son of God on earth (Heb 2:8-13; Rom 8:13-23). Examples are His miracles, signs and wonders and here in Jn 14:43 and also Lk 7:11-17; 8:52-55 His authority as Son of Man. In Jn 14:28 Jesus possibly reiterated that first we need oneness with God the Father (Js 1:5-8) and then via Him (Jn 14:6; 15:1-8), believing what He for us as NT believers, has accomplished on His cross so that we now may also demonstrate our authority as sons of God on earth (Jn 14:6-15-26; Eph 4:12-15; Rom 8:29-39; Heb 13:5…).

Do you see it?  Jesus demonstrated this clearly, if you read the context.  Also Jn 10:10; 16:33.

God sent you this Aid so man can stop trying to pray in their own corrupted wisdom, and with empty rituals, rhymes, and tradition thinking they have to move God into action.  He is I AM, Jesus understands (Heb 4:13-16). Does 1 Cor 14 (especially v 2,4,14) make more sense?  Talk to Him, and with Him in Spirit (Jn 4:24)!

 

Different [kinds of] tongues (1 Cor 12:28) possibly are:

(1)    You speak in a language that exists (as a foreign language), but it is not your mother tongue, neither have you learned to speak it prior to uttering it.  You don’t know what you are saying, but they understand you (Acts 2:4-18).  Many testimonies of missionaries are similar.  Note, however, that virtually all people in that time could speak Greek[3], including Romans.  This was one sure sign Holy Spirit was operating through these Spirit-filled men of God.  This is not the only “kind of tongues”.

(2)    You speak a tongue that neither you nor any one else understands literally (1 Cor 14:2,4,14,22.  This has an element of trust (to speak out the spiritually real but yet unknown to you), and it builds yourself up (Jude 20).  Note that this “tongue”, just as your “mother tongue”, can not be the monotonous repetition of only a few similar [restricted] sounds on every different occasion… and, as mentioned in the short paper “gifts”, nor is it a hysterical gibberish that attempts to fake a presence of God by hyping people [oneself] into a mere euphoric feeling or frenzy in a type of sentimentality that in fact only utilizes – misuses – emotions that is none else than eros in its broader sense, used often by heathens in an “erotic” [emotional and self-centered, self-pleasing show of false religion].  Study 1 Cor 14 carefully, even verses 4,5,39 (with Js 1:5)… We are not to lose our reason in emotion [eros, self-centeredness]… We touched on this earlier on and it basically means that we must be careful to fake a presence of God with fabricated emotional hypes…

(3)    You speak number 2 [that is no known worldly language] above, and someone else supernaturally interprets it (1 Cor 12:10; 14:13-19,26-33).  Explain 1 Cor 14:22,39 (Mt 12:30-37) intelligently…

 

Jesus was the only perfect Man, Who controlled His tongue, so His Spirit inside you, will certainly be able to change your tongue (Js 3), as long as you mix His Word [precepts, teachings] with faith [absolute trust].

 

Note that the diversity in 1 Cor 12 is not saying you cannot have all these gifts, it is saying you will hardly have all at once!  It is like not being able to handle all the water of a huge dam in your house at once, therefore rather you would be using a tap.  Likewise, a pharmacist will only give you the medicine you need then, not the whole pharmacy’s stock at once, although all is available to you (some requiring prescription).  With God’s Spirit inside of you [you in Christ, and He in you], you will have moved from a fleeting glory to a lasting one (2 Cor 3:18); at once, not from one step to a next to a next in multitudes!  You now don’t only have singular gifts, but His Spirit indwelling you permanently to bring Him glory as and when His need therefore arises.  In the OT His anointing was for specific purposes for a specific time only, but in the N.T. it is continuously available as you heed and obey and humble yourself before His teaching and His Voice (2 Cor 10:5-7; 1 Pet 5:5; Rom 8:14).  This when you move from the one glory to the other, when you follow the teaching of Jesus Christ Who ended the law (Rom 10:4; Acts 21:21,28; Heb 8:13; 9:8; Jn 14:6).

 

How about reading Colossians 2:1-3:4 again, this time slowly?  Continue with Rom 8:14 and be abundantly blessed (Mt 6:33)!

 

To better understand the statement, “prayer is not a substitute for planting the Seed of God’s Word in your heart”, we will consider Jesus’ words [prayer] in Jn 17.  Remember that prayer without His Word is religious at best and complaining at its worst.  Remember also, Eph 1:3-12; 2 Pet 1:3-4-11.

 

Note at Jn 17:3.  Jn 17:9 is not contradicting Jn 3:16.  See Jn 17:20.  Jesus was saying that He made it known through teaching and demonstration [living God’s word of Jn 12:50], that He is about life, and then – more specifically – everlasting Life. Know this about God, and you really know Him [His will] better.

Note how He spoiled a very emotional funeral (Lk 7:11-17; Mt 10:8).  Jesus is about Life lasting, the church today is still very much about death and life hereafter.  Read the paper entitled “The Testimony”, if you will.

 

Looking At Jn 17:1,5,22, it seems as if Jesus was “transcending” through a prayer heard and answered by His Father whilst talking to His Father (Jn 11:41,42).  So then, consider talking to your Father as a Person.

Prayer – talking to God the Person

Remember that Jesus pointed out that hypocrites love to pray! (Mt 6:5).  Many religions have millions of religious people that regularly – quite visibly – pray.  But what results are they seeing?  Status with man?

Even amongst humans, a bad relationship would be the one where you only talk with someone at certain times.  Think about it.  Friends, children and parents, family, they all should have continuous and free access and boldness to talk at any time.  The ultimate boldness is mentioned in Heb 4:12-16; 7-9.  Consider Eph 1:6 and Gal 5:6.  Fear for God is not a fear of being rejected by God!  It is about awe and loving respect [appreciation] for His Person.  Talk to Him as a Person, to know Him more accurately, not as if to a “force” in a religious tone of voice and with words you don’t normally use.  Talk to your Father, Friend, Guide…

Try and “translate” Num 23:19 and 1 Pet 1:14-16 as “I AM genuine, so you be genuine…”; “I AM real, so you be real…”; “I AM dedicated, faithful, true to you; so you be dedicated, faithful and true to Me…”  Be His star (Phil 2:15-16; Jn 11:26; 1 Thess 5:23), know that Jesus Christ is your righteousness (Rom 3:24-28; 8:11,14,29-39), not your self

Hebrews 4:14 – 16  (Vs 16): So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it. Some things in life we complicate. It often seems that the simple things in life become so complicated that we simply don’t do them. Prayer is one of those things. For many reasons we complicate the issue of prayer. The result is that we end up excluding prayer from our lives, when in effect it is a very simple and vital element of any Christian’s life. It seems that God meant for prayer to be a simple, spontaneous outflow of our relationship with Him, a conversation. People often ask for prayers that they can pray (written for them so that they can pray them in the morning or for some special event. They perhaps think there is some formula or words that are effective in communicating with God. Well, perhaps try “I love You”, or “Wow, that is magnificent, Father!”.  The truth is that prayer is talking to God. God is looking at our hearts and He wants us to come and talk to Him and hear Him talk to us and lead us and guide us in the journey of an everlasting [victorious] life – on earth!

So yes, prayer is simply just talking to God. Many people pray more than they realise, but because we have complicated [defined] prayer and turned it into a formal religious endeavour, we step back from prayer. God just wants us to talk to [acknowledge] Him! Prayer is the communication process between us and the Lord.
Isaiah 65:24
I will answer them before they even call to Me. While they are still talking to Me about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!  Christianity is a living relationship with a living God. This relationship is built on communication. We need to talk to God (Pray) and let Him respond – often by confirmation on prophecy (saying His words) with His signs, miracles, and wonders[4], and often softly just for you.  But mostly by first having allowed God’s communication (Jn 1:14,17) to enter our hearts…  Perhaps contemplate here “The Bible” by this author, as well.

Our Father
God is our Father. As with our earthly fathers, we should be able to communicate with ease. Just like with our own children, it may many times be just small talk, but if we can give them our full attention and listen intently, how much more our perfect heavenly Father? If children tell their parents that they love them, God wants us to do just the same. He wants us to come and talk to Him and He is waiting just to listen to us speaking to Him – always. Jesus taught us to pray to Our Father.  That is, His Father, and our Father…
(Mt 6:9).  Our Father is always ready to listen when we talk to Him! How do we speak to our fathers? You don’t go to your father and say,  “Be thou…” in Elizabethan English, you just speak to him and in the same way God wants us to speak to Him. God is ‘our Father’ and hear your thoughts as well… talk to Him!  But remember that Jesus Christ is God, so talking to Him is just fine (Jn 14:6).  He was Man for the specific mission to represent all mankind and to make a legit exchange once for all on His cross (Heb 10).  This Jesus did successfully, it is an accomplished [done] deal!

So much of our lives are consumed with our thoughts and our thought life. We think about things, worry about things, concern ourselves over things, get distressed and fearful and we even get stressed out and anxious. We can begin to turn our thought lives into a prayer life and begin to turn those aspects into prayer. Instead of fretting or attacking yourself with anxiety [unbelief, distrust and fear], turn it into prayer and begin to talk to your Father. In that moment the burden lifts and you will forget about it (Heb 12:2).

God is not too busy to listen to you. He is ready and able to give you His full attention (Jer 18:1; Ps 102:17).  Remember prayer is a dialogue with God. We must not do all the talking but we must give God the opportunity to speak to us in return.  Be sensitive [open, humble, receptive, believing] to His Voice.

When we talk to God we can ask Him for those things that we may need (Js 4:2,3; Mt 6:6; Lk 11:9,10).
Why don’t you approach God for those issues and circumstances that are a concern to you today? Just talk to God about them and let’s begin to trust Him. Ask [trust] Him for wisdom and clear perception (Js 1:5).

Expecting God for good results
God wants to come through for us.  All we can ask for, have already been provided at Jesus’ cross (Mk 11:24; Eph 1:3; 2 Pet 1:3-4; Jer 29:11-14).  We must believe God in at least three areas:
Believe in the character of God. He is faithful and He does care for us, and only gives what is good.
We must believe in theintegrity of God. If He said He will do something – HE WILL [and did!].
We must believe that He is able. We must believe that nothing is too hard for Him (Mt 19:26; Is 65:24).

And remember that God is not our slave to do things for us that we should do ourselves as if we are useless!

Note at Mk 11:24.  It is possible that Jesus, by saying “… what things so-ever ye  desire (KJV)…”, [also] implied that God as a perfect Father needs no eloquent and impressive verbal [religious] begging from us to supply whatever we want (Mt 6:5-7), but that sometimes conversing with Him in thoughts [Spirit] will do (Jn 4:23-24)!  Clothing, food and shelter [survival and basic needs] is nothing to fret about (Mt 6:33).  In His presence we can enjoy His covering without any toiling (Ps 127:2).  Js 4:2 can also mean that we often rather covet, strife, and fight because we suspect God of favouritism; and so don’t even attempt to ask our Provider [acknowledge Him]; and even if we ask, do we ask God (Js 4:3) for the wrong reasons [evil purposes, selfish motives], and therefore [as a result of our stupidity and self-righteous ignorance] do we not receive (Gal 6:7-8; Js 1:6-8).  Do we think our omniscient God does not know our thoughts (1 Sam 16:7b; Dt 6:5)?  Do we have a real relationship with a real Person, or with a religious idea that we think only makes us look good?  Do we, in the simplest sense, also know that [because God is no manipulator] we can get [do] whatever we want? But here in Mk 11:24 Jesus said [confirmed and proved through example] that we can get anything in prayer!… (Rom 12:9; remember that Jn 14:15 and 15:14 refers to His commands/precepts/teachings not to Moses).

 

Compare also Js 4:2-7 with Mt 15:6-8; Eph 5:5-7; 1 Pet 3:7 and Js 1:5-8 and Phil 3:9…

 

The mirror.

 

A big gap exists where professing Christians believe an inanimate object – a mirror – showing them a reflection of their faces [who they are]; yet distrusts, even scoffs and rejects the image that God gives us in His Living Word of who we are supposed to be in the spirit [with His Spirit inside of us].  Contemplate Js 1:21-24; 2 Cor 3:17-18; Heb 11:40; 2:8-13; and so on.  God’s Word [Jesus Christ, and the Bible] is His “mirror”.  Do you believe who He says you are in Christ?  Pause, and calmly think about it thoroughly – in Jesus’ name!  We are supposed to enjoy – and live [see] – lasting glory, not fleeting [OT] glimpses!  Selah!

Observe here that homosexuality is certainly not God’s idea for man, but man revolting against God’s design. The paper named “Homosexuality” expands on this. Remember, “political correctness” here, is morally wrong!…

 

Can we pray together?

 

Father, thank You for Your awesome Love, Your grace and Your righteousness that endures forever.  Thank You for Your finished work in Jesus Christ on that cross and our New Testament.  Thank You for Your Spirit-Word.  What a mirror!  What a redeeming Spirit-Word that gives [offers] everlasting life!  We need Your wisdom to speak Your Word, please help us with discernment, wisdom, boldness and Truth.  Thank You for Your wonderful gifts of love, peace and joy, and Your power for signs and miracles.  We agree to speak Your Name, to do what You said we can do; and to love one another perfectly… in Your Name, Jesus.

 

Thank You for Your blessing for all people hearing these words.

I love You Jesus,  [and all of you hearers of Truth]

Amen.


[1] Do not think “the only begotten Son” in Jn 3:16 means you are not a true son [child] of God as Jesus partly was, you are (Jn1:12; Heb 4:12-16; Jn 14:6-15) when you are in Him (Rom 13:11-14; 5; 8; and so on)!  Note that the “commandments” in Jn 14:15, are actually the teachings, precepts and Words of Jesus Chris, not “the law”. “The only begotten”  refers to Jesus’ arrival as Man, but to all who is reborn, Jesus is the FIRST BORN (Heb 1-2), you are one of the “many sons” in Heb 2:10, and are also a son of God (Jn 1:12; 1 Jn 3).  Live it!

[2] Rom 12:3 and Eph 2:8  teaches that all received the same measure of faith.  Heb 11:6 says this ability is thus given by God and we have nothing to boast about.  HE is God.  He is the Author and finisher of our faith (Heb 12:2), but we must look away from that what distracts from HIM, and trust in Him, rely on HIM, then act on HIS words (teachings)!  What was Jesus teaching in Mt 12:15-27?  Note v. 28.  Think about it carefully!  This faith, however, can increase (2 Cor 10:15) as growth is from the Lord and you fully accept Him as your Head! Eph 4:12-25.

[3] Jesus gave the disciples Greek names.  Simon became Petros, Thomas was called Didymus meaning “twin”, or “in two minds”, and so on.  The one reason the time was in “fullness” for the gospel was that all spoke Greek.  Many had three names (Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic), for example was Simon also Peter and also Cephas.  This implies “other tongues” was not necessary for preaching the gospel, but as a sign following re-birth (Mk 16:17; Jn 3:3).

[4] Signs are miraculous authority over nature that authenticates God’s message; Miracles are works of God that demonstrates His love for people (Acts 10:38); Wonders are demonstrations of God’s unlimited power.