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Summary: How to pray and how not to pray...that is the question...

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What Prayer Will Do and Won’t Do

Prayer can strengthen the soul (Ps. 138: 1-3).

How to pray and how not to pray...that is the question...

Statistically, we are told that 78% of all Americans pray at least once a week. 57% pray at least once a day. (found www.crosswalk.com)

Serious prayer, studies show, usually begins after age 30 when the idea that “we are masters of our own fate” begins to fade away. Prayer is efficacious (Eph. 3: 20). Prayer can and will, providing God’s conditions are met (found in His Word), prayer can and will accomplish many wonderful things.

What Prayer Can Do

Prayer can strengthen the soul (Ps. 138: 1-3).

God is all-powerful and is able to do "exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think…" (Eph. 3: 20).

Prayer can be a great source of stability, and preservation (Ps. 121).

Prayer can bring you peace. Instead of being overcome with stresses and anxiety, the child of God is supposed to pray through…prayer can bring you to the threshold of the scripture of having "the peace of God, that passes all understanding…" (Phili. 4: 6, 7).

Prayer will grant the child of God his requests. The scriptures teach answered prayer (Matt. 7: 7-11, Phili. 4: 19). Of course, prayer is answered when the one praying has the attitude of "thy will be done" (I Jn. 5: 14). God even knows man’s needs before man petitions him (Matt. 6: 8, 32). However, God still wants man to ask.

Prayer can bring forgiveness. Man enjoys forgiveness as he submits to God’s plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. The child of God can experience forgiveness through prayer and faith in knowing He will forgive if you ask and believe (I Jn. 1: 9, 2: 1, 2).

The prayers of the Christian can affect others. Intercessory prayer is plainly taught (Rom. 15: 30, 31, Eph. 1: 16-18, Phili. 1: 9-11, Col. 4: 3, I Tim. 2: 1-3). However, the Bible does not teach that you can pray for the salvation of another and God will arbitrarily and against that person’s will save them.

The demonstration of your faith through corporate prayer can build one up, edify and be a great witness to the weaker believer and a nonbeliever.

What Prayer Won’t Do

Prayer alone (without the person confessing, believing and asking for forgiveness themselves) will not save the lost. Nowhere in the Bible states, teaches or insinuates that prayer directly saved the lost. Throughout the book of Acts we read how different ones preached the gospel (spread the Good News) to save the lost (Rom. 1: 16, Acts 2: 14 ff.). The apostles did not simply have regular meetings where they prayed for another person’s salvation…instead of going out and aggressively preaching, teaching and leading them to Christ and repentance.

Prayer will not relieve anyone’s responsibilities. Some people think that instead of doing what God has commanded, they can simply pray. No! Prayer is not a substitute for laboring in the field--- IE: visiting the sick, spreading The Gospel, laying hands on the sick, praying, casting out demons, fellowship, praise and worship and living a holy life (ex. Jas. 1: 27, Gal. 6: 1, 2 Cor. 7: 1).


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