From previous pages we learnt that we have a prayer answering God and that if we do not pray that He will not interfere in our lives. (Read LOGIC OF PRAYER – Bible View) In the coming three sessions we will continue to see what happens if a believer does not commit his or her life to prayer.
a) Purpose of a believer’s life is not fulfilled.
Let us now turn to the Scripture and see why the Lord chose His disciples.
Jn.15:16 “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you…that what ever you ask of the Father in my name, He may give to you.”
This is a very familiar verse from Scripture. The grammatical meaning of this verse is simple and straight forward. But very few believers have understood the meaning of this verse and fewer indeed have put this verse in to practice.
Our Lord was telling the disciples His purpose in choosing them. Fruit bearing clearly is the purpose expressed in this verse. Every disciple of Christ is expected to have consistency in fruit bearing. As all of us know fruit bearing is an automatic thing when it comes to a tree. Given sufficient water, manure and sun light, a tree bears fruits automatically. Likewise, a believer who feeds himself on the Word of God regularly and weeds his life of the works of the flesh (I Pt.2:1-2), fruit bearing for the Lord will become an automatic thing for the believer.
But according to this verse, fruit bearing is not an end in itself. It leads to some thing else. Let us look at the verse once again. The verse continues, “…that whatever you ask the father in my name, he may give to you.”
A fruit bearing believer has to be an asker. Fruit bearing person has to ask and receive fro the father. The fruit bearing believer is promised ‘what ever you ask in my name’.
The verse may be summarized in the following way:
Chosen and appointed (i) to bear fruit, (ii) to continue in fruit bearing, and (iii) to ask and to receive what ever asked for!
When this truth was brought home to me first, it really looked unbelievable. Can it be that God has chosen and appointed us that whatever we ask in the name of the Son of God be given to us? Yes, indeed, the Scripture says, we are chosen and appointed to ask and to receive.
It is true that conditions are to be met if prayers are to be answered. Life has to be bruit bearing, there should be consistency in fruit bearing and of course, asking has to be in the name of the Son of God. If these conditions are met, God does the answering part of it.
In other words we have to order our lives in such a way and ask in such a way that answers must come to us. This indeed is God’s purpose for every believer. So if we do not ask and receive answers, it is that God’s purpose for our lives is not achieved.
A car is bought for going around. If it does not run, it will become a real head-ache to the one who bought it. Like wise a believer, chosen and appointed to ask and receive, if asking and receiving are not done, such a believer becomes the greatest head-ache for heaven. May that not be true of you and me.
Let us arise and order our lives to produce fruits for the master consistently and let us pray in such a way that heaven will answer us. Then and only then will our life purpose will ever be achieved. May the Lord give us grace for His glory. Amen.
If we do not pray…
b) We sin against God
If we are chosen and appointed to ask and receive, prayerlessness means failing in our duty. And the Bible describes prayerlessness as sin.
Many think sin means breaking one of the ten commandments. Sure, breaking commandments is sin. But we usually do not find such sins in the lives of believers.
There may be some believer some where living in blatant sins. Every one knows that they are living away from God. They lose their God-given joy. They become guilty. We know punishment awaits them. We must remember that there is no provision for forgiveness for willful sins. For any willful sin the Bible only offers firey judgment
(Num. 15:30,31; Heb.l0:26,27). New Testament teaches that when a believer is judged, he is not condemned with the world (I Cor.ll:32). Whether a believer or non believer, if a person is found in willful sin he or she is liable for punishment.
I Cor.5:5 tells us that a believer who is found in the sins of the flesh is given over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh. Any sin is a barrier between God and man (Is.58:2).
To day many a believer is found in another type of sin. Sin of prayerlessness (ISam.12:23). I Sam. 12 says that God will not forsake His people. That is God’s plan for His people. But God only carries out His plan in response to the prayer of God’s people. What ever God wants to do in this world He reveals them to His servants the prophets (Am.3:7; Gen.18:17). And the man of God who knows the will of God must pray that it will come true.
Scripture is full of examples of this truth. See how the plagues came in Egypt. God will tell Moses what He was planning to do. Then Moses will declare it to the people God’s will. Then Moses will ask God to bring it about. Again and again we see it in the Scripture.
Truth of the Scripture is very simple. If God’s promises must come true, God’s people must pray. God will not do any thing spiritual in the world except in answer to the prayers of God’s people. So, if people of God do not pray in the will of God, we are hindering or blocking the work of God. Is there a bigger sin than that?
Look into the scripture and see how many commands God has given to believers about prayer. 1 The. 5:17; Col.4:2; Lk.18:1 &c. They are all imperatives. They are not optional. May we learn that prayerlessness is disobedience and therefore punishable sin.
Let us now set apart time to spend time in the presence of the Lord. Let us pray and release the mighty hands of God which is waiting to do wonderful things in response to our prayers. May His Name be glorified. Amen.
If we do not pray…
c) God’s perfect will cannot be accomplished on earth
We have seen several reasons from the Scripture as to why we should pray. There is no room for prayerlessness in the lives of God’s people. A believer who does not have regular prayer habits is not merely useless for God’s kingdom, but the greatest hindrance to God’s work on earth.
I am not strong enough to write these words. My heart beats faster. I cannot bear my burden. “Lord, Jesus I am helpless, Help me I pray. Amen.”
God of the universe has a good and a perfect plan for this universe and for every individual born here. God wants every one to enjoy life in its fullness and be found in His perfect will. But the devil is against this perfect will of God to be accomplished in human lives.
Therefore Satan induces man to go against God and against His perfect plan. Man being fooled by the lies of the Evil One sins against God for temporary gains and pleasures.
Any man who commits sin has to bear the punishment for the same. This is God’s righteous law (Eze.18:14; Rom.6:23). But God has no delight in the death of the sinner (Eze.18:23,32). Death of a sinner is not the perfect will of God. It is the permitted will of God. God permits it with tears. God permits it because there is no other way around. But that surely is not his perfect will. He is not willing that any should perish (ITim.2:4).
If the perfect will of God is to be achieved, there is no other way than the prayers of God’s people. God is not willing that our neighbors and our country men go to eternal hell fire. But if they do not repent and call upon Him they will surely end up there without a doubt. If this should not take place we should be willing to stand in the gap and become intercessors for our nations. “Had not Moses His chosen one stood in the breach before Him, to turn away His wrath from destroying them” (Ps.106:23).
“And I searched for a man among them who should build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found none” (Eze.22:30). If you and I who are God’s people do not stand in the gap millions in our land will end up in Eternal hell fire and no one is responsible for this than those of us who know the Lord. God continues in His sorrow that His perfect will is not achieved. He punishes the unrepentant sinner in sorrow.
If God’s perfect will has to be accomplished on earth, God’s people have to pray. There is no other way. Look at Rom.15:31 where Paul says, “…strive with me in prayer…” that the will of God may be accomplished in my life.
God’s righteousness demands the death of a sinner. But God’s grace is flowing through the child of God to whom God has shown mercy through Christ. The same love of God and grace of God which began to flow through Calvary continues its course through us into the world. The grace of God in us is that which prompts us to pray for the world. To day if we are prompted to pray, we should set aside every work and we should sit at His feet. If we separate time and place and begin to pray regularly we will begin to see this grace flowing through us to others around us. If many a believer responds to the inner call of God and begin the ministry of intercession we will begin to see God’s perfect will accomplished in the lives of many around us. That is why our Lord taught His disciples to pray, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Mt.6:10).
May we respond to the inner call of God and may we bring glory to His Holy name. Amen.