O how God weeps when we foolishly treat him like a magic talisman, as if we try hard enough with the right amount of faith God will give us what we ask. By carelessly tacking on the well worn and hackneyed phrase – ‘in Jesus name Amen' to our petitions we are treating God as if he was god Baal. Such an idea as depicted in the O T incurred Gods wrath on the nation of Israel. Be warned.
We need to take a hard look as the end times approach how we view prayer and how we pray to God our Father. God is not someone who will wave his magic wand and do our bidding – not even if we ask in the name of Jesus as if it will open Gods heart to us. We need to get our head around the fact that our faith is never good enough for God, as it is tainted faith. The Bible says that we live by faith – but this is not our faith for we must live by the faith of the Son of God who gave himself for us. Faith to be effective and pleasing to God must be cantered in the cross and the redemption of our souls.
When Jesus said in John's gospel these words – ‘You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it' [Jn 14:14] he was not kidding us. But as so often, we have taken the wrong end of the stick in understanding this verse as we have followed church dogma and tradition. In the context in which these words were spoken Jesus had made it plain in verse 10, that the Father and he were One, and the words he spoke, he spoke what the Father told him.
When we pray we are should be so as one with Jesus, that the words we pray are the very words that we have heard Jesus place in our spirit to speak out in his name. So our prayer is really Jesus' prayer which we speak and in this sense the prayer is ‘in Jesus' name.'
This is the only way that we can open the door of Gods heart for we do not know what to pray. Hence our faith is in trusting that God will give us the words to pray in that situation. Therefore our words are his words and his words become our words for we are one with him. The believer who abides in Jesus is the will of God and his prayers are the prayers of God. Mysterious? Illogical? Absurd? Yes, but what a wonderful truth and relief for the believer.
Jesus said these words which should be written on the palms of our hands and tied around our necks – "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit;apart from me you can do nothing.
I must pass on my thanks to Dorothy Von Lehe (@revgenlink) who recently posted a brilliant blog on healing and faith and this blog was born out of hers.
I agree with this blog.
Over the past few years in particular, I have met a number of Christians who been hurt a great deal because fellow Christians have insisted that if they have not been healed, if they face challenging situations, it must be because they are being punished, have displeased God, etc. I find that absolutely abhorrent! How dare we suggest such a thing? Only God sees the heart and the Holy Spirit will deal with things which need to be dealt with.
Yes, there are times He does speak through us, but we need to be extremely careful and make sure He is doing the talking, not us. I fear that most of the time, from what I have seen, we get puffed up by the idea that He is speaking through us when He is not. Like I said, we must be very, very careful before we say, "Thus saith the Lord." We must remember that we are accountable for what we say and do, even if we had the best of intentions.
This teaching which likens God to a magician is extremely prevalent in the United States. It has heavily infiltrated many churches and I daresay is preached one way or another in pulpits across America every Sunday. I believe it to be one of the biggest lies Christians are ensnared with.
There is nothing wrong with bring our petitions to God. The error is believe that God must answer our petitions according to our directives. That is putting ourselves in God's place and that is wrong. Yet that is exactly what happens when we automatically assume that God's will matches our own! It needs to be the other way around.
Just this morning I got off the phone with my son who is presently going through a very terrible and devastating situation. Could God have prevented this situation from happening? Of course. My son's prayers about it have only seemed to make the situation far worse and yet... he is able to see how this terrible thing, this "olive press stone", is creating "growing pains". He realized that though he is still praying for resolution, God is using this terrible situation to do some pretty amazing things in his life.
That's what happens when we lay everything in God's hands and trust Him... no matter what!