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What Prayers Are Answered?

April 3, 2016

I was asked recently if God answers my prayers.  The questioner has been greatly afflicted with physical ailments and it appears the Lord is working with this brother and using this trial to do it.  Yet the brother was troubled because it appeared his prayers were not being answered.  Besides asking me for prayer, the question was asked does God answer my prayers.  This is a worthy question and worthy of sharing the answer as a post in hopes of edifying the family of God.

First we should never lose sight of the Sovereignty of God in ALL THINGS.  This includes evil things as well as the good.

Isa 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

The Lord is the one who wounds us and He is also the one who heal us, all according to His will and purposes.

Deu 32:39 See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal: neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand.

Evil include the afflictions and the trials the Lord gives us beyond our sins.  Here the same word for EVIL [H7451 in Strong’s or spelled “RA”] translated as afflictions.  They are one and the same yet the Lord will in due time deliver us out of them all.

Psa 34:19 Many are the afflictions [H7451 Evil] of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

The short answer is that yes, the Lord answers my prayers.  But He only answers them according to His will.  We must remember the ways of the Lord are different than that of the natural man aka the carnal mind.

Isa 55:8  For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.

Isa 55:9  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Prayers are answered according to the Lord’s will not the will of any man.  The Lord’s will is always being done and that truth includes prayers but also ALL THINGS.

Eph 1:11  In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:

Another key point point is the aspect of time and when the Lord answers prayers.  A day to the Lord is like 1,000 years and vice versa. So the Lord marches to a different time factor than the natural man.  In fact the way we are supposed to possess these bodies of clay is with patience and of course none of us have any until the Lord gives it to us and we learn it as we mature in the faith.

Luk 21:19  In your patience possess ye your souls.

So let’s look more at the Scriptures, our only source for truth to see if we can add some more definition to the basic answer to your question on prayer.  We see lots of Scriptures, some saying He answers prayers and some saying He does not answer prayers.

He does not answer these prayers

Prayers of the old man made seeking to have his flesh blessed and prospered, contrary to the will of God are not answered in our day of the Lord, in our day of judgment.  The Lord does prosper the wicked and the righteous for a season and this does help keep the entire world deceived to the truth I am sharing here in answering you.  But when judgment has come on our house, then those carnal prayers will not be answered.

Jer 11:14  Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up a cry or prayer for them: for I will not hear them in the time that they cry unto me for their trouble.

The old man is the marred vessel of clay made to be destroyed.

Pro 1:26  I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;

Pro 1:27  When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.

Pro 1:28  Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:

When we pray contrary to the Lord’s will (asking amiss) or simply ask not because we do not have faith, our prayers are not answered and we do not receive.

Jas 4:3  Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

The Lord is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.  If we have needs we need to go to Him but we should be doing that constantly or diligently.

Jas 1:5  If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

But we need to ask in faith and not doubt.  If we doubt and are still being tossed and turned we are still that double minded man, mixing carnal thoughts with godly thoughts and James tells us we should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.

Jas 1:6  But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

Jas 1:7  For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.

Jas 1:8  A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

When we pray not according to His will, He does not answer them as we prayed; because it is HIS will being done, not ours.  His will is our sanctification and He is working ALL THINGS to bring that about.  He is destroying the old man and our carnal way of thinking to bring forth the new.  So when we pray asking the Lord to bless our flesh or take away the burden, we are more than likely praying amiss.  When we come to understand what the Lord is doing and that it is the trials through which we are remade and saved, then we won’t pray for the removal of the trial, but we will pray for the strength to endure the trial and the increased faith to believe what His word says and to trust in the Lord.

Rom 10:11  For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Isa 40:31  But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

This is why it is said, in our patience (waiting on the Lord) we shall possess our souls.  Many witnesses to waiting, that is the mark of the Lord’s people, having great patience.

Hos 12:6  Therefore turn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment, and wait on thy God continually.

This is required to enter into true REST, to enter into Christ who is the Sabbath.  This is the rest that remains for the people of God that few are given in this age to find.

Psa 37:7  Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

This waiting and enduring the TORMENT to the old man, is the patience of the saints.  The very verse false prophets use to teach the lie of eternal torment shows those who have ears to hear and eyes to see the truth.

Rev 14:9  And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

Rev 14:10  The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

Rev 14:11  And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

Rev 14:12  Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.

Understanding what I just reviewed about Rev 14 is very important.  If you can be given to understand that than you are well on your way to spiritual healing, the greater work that Jesus wanted done.

Those who keep the commandments, are those in the “is, was and will be process of being judged now”.  It is the same chastening grace that torments the old man and ultimately destroys those fleshly and carnal desires within us.  That is the patience of the NEW MAN to endure thru that process and trust in the work the Lord is working within us to bring Christ forth from the death of our old man.

We are not to pray for the world or for worldly things.  The fact is the Lord is not saving the whole world now, He is only working with His Elect in this AION (age).  While Babylon means well and it seems good to pray for all those suffering around the world, God’s people are not to be focused on worldly things, events or circumstances.

Joh 17:9  I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.

Jer 14:11  Then said the LORD unto me, Pray not for this people for their good.

Jer 7:16  Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee

This seems harsh and unloving to the carnal mind but it is the truth. All men will be saved, we just need to learn patience in that regard as well.  The Lord does not need our help; He is working all things right on schedule.

Act 17:25  Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed anything, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things;

Rom 11:36  For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

Psa 127:1  A Song of degrees for Solomon. Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.

The Lord does answer ALL prayers of Faith, in His timing and in His ways

Here are some well-known passages that speak to the Lord answering prayers, but they are prayers made in FAITH and not in unbelief.  The stories around these verses tell us that.

Mat 7:7  Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you

This is right after we are told not to cast our pearls to swine and engage in discussion with those the Lord has blinded in this age.

Mar 11:21  And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away.

Mar 11:22  And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.

Mar 11:23  For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

Mar 11:24  Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

This speaks not to literal things but to spiritual.  Getting mountains removed is removing the giants in the land, our besetting sins and the lies and false doctrines, or the idols of our heart we setup and worship.  This must be done within us for the temple we are to be cleansed.

1Co 3:16  Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

1Co 3:17  If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

A prayer that keeps the old man alive or allows a false doctrine or unbelief to fester in our mind (heavens) is not going to be answered.  The Lord is in the business of destroying the beast we all are when we are given to hear His word.  The Lord will not answer prayers that perpetuate the defiling of His temple and the blaspheming of His Holy name. He comes with a sword to make war in our heavens and nothing is going to stop the process from running its course.  He will not spare, He will not pity the old man or listen to our cries for help if they go against His purposes.

Eze 7:9  And mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will recompense thee according to thy ways and thine abominations that are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the LORD that smiteth.

This sounds all so negative and it is for the old man. But the SUM of the Word tells us the Lord is good and He is merciful and He is not going to give us any trial or affliction we cannot bear.

1Co 10:13  There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

There is always a way out and that is called Faith.  The rest of Scriptures tell us to go seek the elders and to cast our cares upon Christ (1 Pet 5:7) and by doing so we shall be healed.

Jas 5:14  Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:

Jas 5:15  And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

Jas 5:16  Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

It is the Elect of God that make up His Body that have great power in their prayers made according to true faith.  This is how deliverance comes and we are primarily spiritually healed (the greater works of John 14:12).  Yet the Lord also does heal us physically and does answer prayers for such healing according to His will.  We must ask for those healing but need to be prepared to wait for an answer or endure if it is His will not to answer.

We must learn to pray like Christ demonstrated.  Christ suffered and so will His Christ on a cross being hated and rejected by those in the world.  We will pray for removal of this cup of suffering but as our faith grows, we will pray the right prayer which is the Lord’s will be done.

Luk 22:42  Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.

A prayer of faith is required for a prayer to be answered.  Anything not of faith is sin.   If we think it is up to us and our free will as an example, that is not a prayer of faith but is a prayer of unbelief.  All things must be done in the name of Jesus Christ, but what does that really mean?

Joh 14:12  Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

Joh 14:13  And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

Doing the greater works is bringing spiritual healing and salvation to all men in the end.  We are the instruments, the BODY thru which the Lord works.  When we ask things according to His name, referring to obeying Him and true doctrines not how you pronounce or say the name physically, then those prayers are answered, He will do it.

Joh 15:7  If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

See the condition here.  “IF we do things in His name” which means obeying His commands and standing on pure doctrine then He answers us, it will be done.  Those that abide in me, are those that continually abide in Him.  Those are the very few disciples indeed that are distinguished from those who abide only for a little while in “me”.

Joh 8:31  Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;

Here is one OT witness, there are many more but for brevity I show just the one.

Jer 33:3  Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

The great and mighty things we knowest not is the remaking of the old man into the new man by this process of judgment.

So when we ask for prayer according to His will, we are praying that thy kingdom come on earth as it already is in heaven.

Luk 11:1  And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.

Luk 11:2  And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.

Luk 11:3  Give us day by day our daily bread.

Luk 11:4  And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

Heaven and earth are not speaking to things in space.  The kingdom of God is within us (Luke 17:21).  Heaven is our heart and mind and earth is our body and our walk.  So this prayer is asking the Lord to take what is already in heaven, THE TRUTH, the pure doctrine and make that manifest in our walk on the earth.  So we may know it is a sin to lust after a woman in our heart.  Yet we still battle that in our life.  We pray for the Lord to deliver us from that sin.  That is asking thy kingdom come thy will be done (which is our sanctification) on earth as it is in heaven.  This is the will of God, that we be cleansed of all things that defile and abstain from mixing things of the world with the things of God (fornicating).

1Th 4:3  For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:

So be ready for how the Lord works.  If you ask for something according to your will, the Lord is going to bring trials that will test that very things we have prayed for.   The trials of our faith is what is precious to the Lord.  For example if we ask for deliverance from lust or patience, we will get trials and be put in situation to tempt us try our faith.

1Pe 1:7  That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

Those trials and the subsequent falling down and getting up again is the chastening grace of the Lord and how we are caused to obey Him with time and His will is done in our life.

Rom 5:20  Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:

Eze 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

Isa 26:9 With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.

And here is what real grace really is.  It is the furnace that melts away the old and purifies the dross within us.

Isa 48:10  Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.

Act 14:22  Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

This is why it pleases the Lord to bruise us, His Christ.  We must become a living sacrifice to complete the work of the Lord.

Isa 53:10  Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

Col 1:24  Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

So to your situation Steve.  I am praying for your deliverance of the ailments you describe.  Your prayer in asking for that is perfectly fine, as the Lord can and does heal but not always.  You need to be willing to accept this burden as part of the cross the Lord has given you to carry, if that be His will.  But the Lord may just deliver you and you must ask for that.  Paul also had an ailment but the Lord did not deliver him of that to keep him humble so he could use him in ministry.

2Co 12:7  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

2Co 12:8  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.

2Co 12:9  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

When your faith grows and you see the good that comes about from your infirmities, than like Paul you will be able to rejoice in those infirmities knowing they work the true righteousness of Christ within you.

The Lord cannot use us if we are puffed up.  I hope you are beginning to appreciate the Lord’s work and give Him thanks for all things (Eph 5:20).  He does not choose many noble or those who look well by the world’s standards to be in His Body.  He chooses those the world rejects and thinks are nothing that is who makes up the Christ in this age.  Knowing the Body of Christ, I can tell you that you and your ailments are in very good company.  Here is a witness to this truth from the new and the old testament.

1Co 1:26  For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:

1Co 1:27  But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;

1Co 1:28  And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:

And these verses define our Lord but they also define His Christ, His Body who are doing His work in every age.

Isa 53:2  For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

Isa 53:3  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

I am in fervent prayer for your healing, both SPIRITUALLY as well as physically.  THY KINGDOM COME, is the most simplest prayer of faith that honors the Lord.

Mat 6:10  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

We are commanded to pray without ceasing.

1Th 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

Obviously one cannot pray physically without ceasing.  We have to eat, sleep, work etc. and focus on other things to live a life in this world and in these clay vessels.  So what is being said here really comes down to what true spiritual prayer is all about.  Praying is doing the will of God.  Coming to the place of rest, where we no longer seek to do our will but your will O Lord is how we pray without ceasing.

Heb 4:9 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.

Heb 4:10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his

Entering into true Sabbath rest, is how we can pray without ceasing.  We are always striving to do our Father’s will and sacrificing the wants and desires of our flesh to the commandments of the Lord.  This takes much labor and trial to attain and we only arrive in down payment form in this life. Yet we are striving to enter into that rest and it is enduring through the process that we pray without ceasing.

Heb 4:11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

Heb 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Said another way, we are becoming a DOER of the Word and not just a HEARER by praying without ceasing. That is when our prayers are truly powerful and save the spiritually sick including ourselves.

Jas 5:15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

Jas 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

The topic of prayer has much more to cover and there are some great studies at iswasandwillbe.com.

Prayer of faith saves the sick

House of Prayer Mini Series

Our every prayer answered?

Struggle to see the need for prayer

Questions and comments can be emailed to me at peterjwilson56@gmail.com.  Or you can leave one here on the blog site subject to approval.

Your brother in Christ,  PETE

 

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 5, 2016 8:34 AM

    Hi Michael, I am with you in the struggles against the flesh. The beast that was and is not, YET IS (Rev 17:11) still lurks there and always will. Which is why we must endure to the end to be saved. Here is a clip from the study I am working on that will speak of this very subject of patience and waiting on the Lord to deliver us fully.

    Heb 6:12 That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

    Heb 10:36 For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.

    Heb 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

    Rom 8:24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
    Rom 8:25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

    Of course those that believe the lie of free will and worse eternal hell will claim we promote sin by simply expressing the truth that the Lord is really the Lord of our heaven and our earth. Apart from Him we can do nothing. We have hope when we endure patiently through these “evil” afflictions and stand on the comfort that comes through believing the Scriptures.

    Rom 15:4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

    We are getting there as a famous sister of the congregation is found of saying.

    Your brother learning to wait patiently on the Lord to deliver on His promises,

    Pete

  2. Michael Charles permalink
    July 4, 2016 9:42 PM

    Thanks Pete for reminding us that even with prayers we need to exercise patience and wait on the Lord. I can identify with not wanting to lust after a woman, and after praying about it I find that the Lord seems not to be answering my prayer. And this have me questioning who I am sometimes, whether am I REALLY OF THE BODY OF CHRIST?. But your study has been of great help. Thanks again!

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