I found a huge change in the number of prayers answered in my life when I started praying the way the Bible teaches us to pray. Many more prayers were answered, and they were answered much more quickly.
When I was a missionary to China, I saw so many miracles it made me wonder why we didn’t have more in Wichita. Later I found that when people pray the way the Bible teaches us to pray, miracles happen, but precious few people pray that way.
Acts 3:6 “Peter said….In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong.
Notice the way Peter prayed, it was the same as the OT prophets after God taught Moses to pray. He said “In the name of Jesus, get up and walk!” It almost seems more like a command than a prayer. You don’t hear many people pray that way today, but I noticed those that do pray that way have very powerful prayers.There are dozens of things you can do to strengthen your prayer faith. Here are just a few.
God set a precedent for prayer way back in the time of Moses. He taught how to have powerful prayer at that time and all the people of faith prayed that way throughout the OT and the New Testament.. They saw amazing miracles. Unfortunately, very few people pray that way today.
Moses had let the Jews out of Egypt and were being chased by one of the most powerful armies of the world in that day. They were trapped by the Red Sea. Moses stood praying to God. But God told him to quit praying a do something.
Exodus 14:15 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on.16 Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.
Moses did not have the Holy Spirit living inside him the way we do today after Pentecost, so he didn’t have as much prayer power as we do, but he did have a staff, and when he used it the way God told him to, amazing things happened.
Jesus said that if you have even a little faith you can speak to a mountain and tell it to move and it will. Matt 17:20. He didn’t say to stand there praying, He said to speak to the mountain! If you are a Christian, the Holy Spirit is one with you, living inside you (John 17). That is an enormous amount of power! But few Christians use the power God gives us because we don’t pray with faith.
Over 40 times, Jesus said the key to answered prayer is faith. A few times, Jesus hints that one key to answered prayer is whether or not it is Gods will. Why does he stress faith even more than Gods will? Leave a message and let me know, please! My guess is that he knows that humans will never know Gods will in every circumstance. When praying for a sick person, does God want to heal them completely through death (and paradise if they are saved) or does God heal them partially and let them go on trudging through this cesspool we call planet Earth?
James 5 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up.
We have proved over and over again that this verse is not true, right? And since it is not true we find other verses to back up our belief. No, I believe the verse is true, it is just that we have not been taught how to have powerful prayer faith. If you took a Christian and sent him/her back in time to walk with Jesus for 3 years he would come back with powerful prayer faith. The key would be to get him away from the negative thinking that fills the churches today and let him see the thousands of miracles Jesus did. At one point, an apostle says that if we recorded all the miracles Jesus did, even a library of books would not be big enough to record them. That is a lot of miracles.
John 14:12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.
It seems this verse is not true, because we don’t see people performing miracles very often today. Notice the Bible says the followers of Jesus performed miracles (it doesn’t say God performed miracles through them) Acts 2:43; Acts 4:16; Acts 5:12; Acts 6:8 Acts 7:36
So how should we pray for a sick person or a person with a birth defect? “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, be healed!” Every person who asked for healing with faith, got healed. It is hard to admit we don’t have mountain moving faith. To tell you the truth, I don’t have that kind of faith yet. But after memorizing verses on faith and repeating them every day and doing some other things, my prayer faith is much, much stronger now than it was two years ago.
One problem is that a person puts these ideas into practice, and pray but they don’t see any result. So they give up. I found it has taken me two years of repeating Bible verses and doing other things to build my prayer faith. It has made a huge difference in my prayer life, but unfortunately it has taken me a lot of time and effort. I am still growing in this area, I wish I could say I was there, but I’m not.
There are dozens of things you can do to strengthen your faith. Here are just a few.
This post was entirely rewritten from an earlier blog entry.