Prayer is not a Blank Check Signed in Jesus’ Name | Amy Wang

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This is a WordPress repost of an excellent article originally authored by Amy Wang from regarding asking things from God in Jesus’ name.

Although the purpose of prayer is not simply to ask God for things, that is often foremost in our mind. Then, when we don’t get what we ask for, we are tempted to think God does not exist. When our prayer requests are not answered the way the Bible leads us to expect, we suspect the Bible may be untrue. But could we have misinterpreted the Bible or taken verses out of context? Let us first look at passages that are clear to help us understand those whose meanings are unclear.

The Bible provides a few keys to effective prayer which are quite clear. For example, if we want God to answer our prayers, we can:

(a) keep God’s commandments (1 John 3:22-24, John 15:7),

(b) ask according to God’s will (1 John 5:14), and

(c) persevere in prayer (Luke 18:1-8, Luke 11:5-13). Furthermore, we can reconsider our motives (James 4:3), repent of iniquity in our hearts (Psalm 66:18, Proverbs 15:29,28:9, 1 Peter 3:12, Isaiah 59:2), and so on.

The Bible makes it clear that sin can prevent God from hearing the prayers of the wicked, and God may even answer “No” to the righteous, when their prayer request is not according to His will. Where then have we gotten the notion that God can answer any random prayer request as if He were giving us a blank check? Below, we will look at some bible passages that are less clear and provide some possible interpretations Christian theologians and thinkers have offered to clarify potential misunderstandings. In particular, we will look at bible promises regarding (1) asking “in Jesus’s name”, (2) receiving when we keep on asking, (3) receiving whatever we ask in faith [pistis], and (4) receiving what two or more agree on. These interpretations are subject to error, so please take this with a grain of salt and study the Bible to seek out the answer for yourself.

To read the rest of this excellent article please click on the link directly below:

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