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For the Christian, praying is supposed to be like breathing, easier to do than to not do. We pray for a variety of reasons. For one thing, prayer is a form of serving God (Luke 2:36-38) and obeying...
I would submit to you that God is not in control of everything. Please let me explain before you jump to any conclusions. This is a VERY important concept to understand be cause it shapes our perception of who God is. God is love. You cannot have true love without freedom. Freedom and "control" are not synonyms. Love and control are not synonyms. I cannot put a gun to your head and make you love me, love is a choice. Remember God is the one on trial in this whole great controversy between good and evil. The angles and un fallen worlds are watching to see if Satans accusations about God are true or not. Is God a "controlling" God who in the end doesn't really give us free choice? Or is He a God who just knows that His ways are the best ways for us if we will only "choose" them. Don't get me wrong, I believe that God "has" the power to control everything, but because He is a God who IS love He does not exercise that power; therefor He does not control everything. According to 1 John 5:19 this world is in the control of the "Evil one". If God is "controlling" everything, and everything that happens "happens for a reason" than rape & child molestation are Gods will! Sick thought isn't it! And that is definitely going to affect our perception of God, - in a bad way (which accomplishes Satans purposes) Because, it is when we see God for who He really is, that we fall in love with Him and "surrender" to Him ourselves. Where does prayer come into all this? That is a topic that is grossly confused & unclear in many peoples minds. It is also a deep and intricut topic that an "oversimplified" answer cannot, well, answer. Simply put though, I believe that when we pray to God earnestly and sincerely, it shows, to everyone, (unseen angles, Devil, etc) that we are exercising our free choice, and that by answering our prayer God is not violating our free choice. There is also a battle going on remember. And if God were to exercise His power and overcome the enemy "just cause" than He would not be a God of love! As hard of a concept as that is to wrap our heads around. Because remember, control is virtually the opposite of love. God bless you, Jason.
Prayer can indeed 'change God's mind'. (Luke 18:1-8, Jonah 3:10, Amos 7:1-9) [God does not repent, though, as if his first decision was 'wrong' (Num 23:19)] When God changes his mind, it is out of mercy - not because his first decision was in any way unjust. (I Chron 21:15, Gen 18:16-33) As such, one of the reasons for prayer is to appeal to God's mercy. "And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?" (Luke 18:7) "The Lord has heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer." Psalm 6:9 There are many other reasons to pray: For forgiveness (1 Kings 8:30-34, II Chron 6:24-25, Jer 36:7) For various requests concerning the body of Christ and other believers (Eph 6:18-20, II Cor 9:12-15) For intercession (Acts 8:24, II Samuel 12:23, James 5:16) or the reverse of not praying to intercede (Jer 7:16-19, 1 John 5:16) So that our hearts are humbly turned towards God (Hosea 7:14) Because God finds it pleasing (Rev 8:3-4) For adoration of God/glorifying God: (Matt 6:9-13, II Chron 29:11, Psalm 66:3) For confession: (James 5:16, For thanksgiving: (II Cor 9:12, Eph 9:19-20) To determine God's will: (Judges 6:39) For discernment: (Luke 21:36) For reprieve from oppression or affliction (Psalm 10:17, Psalm 119:134) To turn our hearts from troubles or anger to righteous response: (Psalm 77, Psalm 4) This is hardly an exhaustive list! God does hear our prayers, made in Jesus' name. In fact, to pray something in Jesus' name is to put the seal of Jesus' authority on it. Even if you feel sometimes that God wouldn't or doesn't listen to you [though He does], understand that God the Father does listen to His own son! This is for God's own glory. (John 14:13) This does not mean God will grant every wish or change every circumstance. We are stewards under Christ, and so our requests must be in line with the character of Christ.
God's foreknowledge has nothing to do with the reason we aught to pray to Him. The inhabitants of Nineveh prayed when Jonah came through the city telling them God was going to destroy that city and as a result God repented of His decision as Jonah knew he probably would and wasn't happy about God's decision. God answers the prayers of all those who come before Him in a humble and contrite attitude of heart. Heartfelt prayers move God to act in mercy and loving kindness and He always answers the prayer of a humble and contrite person, unless in His over-all plan He sees that giving that person an answer would not be to their good as to the end result He sees for them. That is why some are not healed or don't receive an immediate answer to their heartfelt prayers. God know what is best for us and as a result acts toward us accordingly. When we pray to our God and our Father we are talking to Him and letting him know how much we love Him and thanking Him for all he has given us through His beloved son Jesus. We have truth, light, life, and know the way to entrance to the coming kingdom of God to be established in the coming new age. He has given us the right to come boldly into His presence as His begotten sons as his little children to experience His loving arms drawing us to Himself. With all of this before me, why would I not want to come to God in prayer, telling Him about all that I need help for and waiting on His grace to assist me in those things. He has given us an paracletos - one who comes along side to help us and his name is Jesus. He has given us a High Priest in heaven for us to intervene for us as our advocate and his name is Jesus. He has given us a comforter who promises to be with us always and his name is Jesus. He has given us the life giving spirit to be with us and his name is Jesus. Why would I not come before the throne of Jesus' God and ours, Jesus Father and ours and give him thanks for all His wonderful grace poured out on all of us who do not deserve anything at all and yet He has blessed us immeasurably! Halil Yah - Praise God. Hebrews 13:15 Through him - Jesus therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. When we do this more and more we will feel the presence of the One with whom we have to do. It is a great comfort to know we are never alone, that our God has provided a person to come alongside us to help keep us on the narrow path that leads to life in the coming new age. That fact alone should to give us reason to come before our God and our Father with thanksgiving and praise continually. Indeed what a friend we have in Jesus and what a Father we have in our God who gives us all we have need of!
In addition to the reasons already suggested in the above posts, prayer to our Creator plays the same role that communicating with a spouse plays in our lives. We talk to our spouse to remain close, connected. And it is pleasurable! Nothing like waking up and kissing an angel good morning, and communicating a heartfelt message. In the same way, talking to God in a loving way, submitting to Him--in the same way one submits to a spouse--literally a joyful verbal exchange--keeps everything fresh and connected. To neglect communication--prayer--is to withdraw from God; in the same way neglecting communication with a spouse is a rending of the relationship. "Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." (Proverbs 16:24). (NIV)
I have learned to view prayer not as a briefing session where we take time to brief God about the goings on, on earth as if God did not see or does not know what is going on. We play the role of CNN very well! Surely there must be more to prayer than reporting to God that so-and-so is sick, we need food, you lost your job etc. As pointed out in the question God already knows everything in fact He knows it better than we do. When we pray to God we need to realise that we are conversing with a higher being than ourselves. When we pray to God we need to be reverent and sincere. It does not help to pray to God and ask for strength to overcome smoking for example and as soon as you rise to your feet you light up. That shows lack of sincerity. One needs to live the prayer that they have prayed. It’s a demonstration of commitment and surrender to the will of God. A lot of brilliant answers and reasons for prayer have been given but let me just say that true prayer in my view has these components: 1. Praise 2. Reverence 3. Confession of sin 4. Faith 5. Submission to God's will 6. Listening to God 7. Doing/ Living the will of God When the disciples observed Jesus praying, they were amazed at how He prayed until they asked Him "Teach us to pray". In fact the bible says that Jesus spent all night in prayer. I have tried to spend all night in prayer--believe me it is not possible without repeating yourself over and over again. But how did Jesus do it? I think He spent time conversing with God, that talking as much as listening. He simply asked in my view, what God wanted Him to do the next day and God provided answers. That is why after these prayers people would marvel at how He spoke! I do not think prayer is about telling God what we want. Rather it is about asking God what He wants us to do. It is about totally surrendering ourselves to God and asking Him to do His will in us as it is done in heaven. Rom 8:26 “In the same way, the Spirit also helps us in our weakness, for we do not know how to pray as we should. But the Spirit himself intercedes with groans too deep for words”. In my view therefore God knows what we should be praying for and the Holy Spirit inspires the right prayer in us. Mat 6:5 “When you are praying, don't say meaningless words like the gentiles do, for they think they will be heard because of their wordiness. Don't be like them, because your Father knows what you need before you ask him. "Therefore, this is how you should pray”. Here Jesus sought to bring it to the attention of His listeners that prayer was not about meaningless recitations. God knows what we need before we ask Him. By praying to God we are seeking for guidance in God’s will. We are not seeking to bring God’s attention to the things that He has missed! With this attitude in prayer, we shall get back to our feet refreshed and renewed. Ready to perform the will of God. Jesus said greater miracles we shall perform if we follow His example. It starts with prayer like He did. Understanding prayer this way answers the question of why Jesus needed to pray – to obtain the will of the Father.
"This is the confidence we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us" (1 Jn 5:14) ► Mt 7:7, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you." The answer to prayer is certain. The very nature of God is to answer prayer. We "will" get what we ask for. We "will" find what we seek. The door we knock "will" open. Do not doubt God. Simple faith is not that easy in a scientific age. But there is no other way. It is God who is calling us to ask, seek and knock. What for, but to answer us? God delights in our asking and even more in His answering. ► Mt 7:8, "For everyone who asks receives and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened." God plays no favouritism. Everyone is equally important and precious to Him. No doubt we need the prayer help of others but we do not need anybody's recommendation. We can approach God directly. There is no "gift" called getting prayers answered. Can God be partial to His children? Elijah was not a deluxe edition. He was a man "with a nature like ours." He prayed and God answered. The effective, fervent prayer of "any" righteous man avails much (Js 5:16-18). We are made righteous in Christ. Shed down all inhibitions and pray boldly. ► Mt 7:9-11, "What man is there among you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a snake? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in Heaven give good things to those who ask Him?" God gives precisely what we ask. Whatever comes from the Father of Lights is "good and perfect" (Js 1:17). In the place of "good things" Luke writes "Holy Spirit" (Lk 11:13). The best of gifts! The Promise of the Father! Pray daily for a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit. God will give the Spirit without measure because He is "able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think!" (Eph 3:20).
God asks us to pray because when we do we ACKNOWLEDGE Him. "In all your ways acknowledge him..." (Proverbs 3:6) This is an invitation to ask him to work in our lives. It's an even easier word for me to understand than "trust." When we acknowledge someone, it's giving someone credit and honor. When someone is acknowledged it is because of what they have already done, or who they are. They are acknowledged typically when they are standing right there. That gives me great faith -- I can trust a God who is worth being acknowledged. So, when I pray, I begin by saying, "God, I acknowledge you in this situation. I know you are here. I give you permission to work in my life and on my behalf (or the behalf of others.) "
As you all know, prayer is important element as far as a Christian believer is concerned. The power of prayer cannot be overlooked. In our daily living, prayer has an important role to play. I would like to give more emphasis on personal prayer rather than collective prayer or common prayer. Communication with God is a two-way matter. We hear God speaking to us through His Word first. And then we speak to Him. But prayer is not just making requests to God. A primary part of prayer should be having fellowship with God, like a bride with her bridegroom. There are no rules on how a bride should speak to her bridegroom. But as a discipline, it's good for our prayers to consist of: (i) praise to our Father for Who He is; (ii) confession of sin and failure; (iii) petitions concerning the kingdom of God; (iv) petitions concerning our own needs; (v) intercession for the needs of others; (vi) thanksgiving for what God has done; and (vii) thanksgiving for what God will do. Jesus told us to "pray at all times" (Lk. 18:1). Knowing who God is can only be achieved through personal prayer. A good habit to develop is to learn to speak to God about the little things of daily life - and thus to be in a spirit of prayer throughout the day. Thus, speaking to God will become a joy for us and not a ritual. We'll also find that God speaks to us in our hearts in surprising ways. But these are just the kindergarten-lessons in the school of prayer. We can progress further if we are faithful. In any case, prayer should never be allowed to degenerate into a dry, empty ritual. Prayer is like breathing. When our breathing becomes difficult for us, then we know that something is wrong! Prayer was never meant by God to be dry or boring.
Sweetheart prayer is the most powerful resource we have in this life. It unleashes the spiritual dynamite that obliterates darkness and despair. It is to be cherished, we get to speak to the God who created this universe, how awesome is that? It is how you develop a close relationship with God. I am so thankful for prayer, it also unites Christians together.
This is a fallen world handed over to Satan by Adam. Satan is the god of this fallen world (Jn 14:30). God is a God of justice and will not violate His principle or attribute of justice; Therefore He will not force His way into man's affairs. He requires that we invite Him into our situation authorizing Him to intervene on our behalf. Furthermore, our prayer to Him also shows our dependence on Him and our reverence and belief in His Lordship and ability to defend, protect and provide for us. Most importantly, our prayer to Him must be according to His will which further acknowledges His sovereignty over all.
"The fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." When I read your question, I don't hear you asking why we should pray as much as "I want to understand the aspect of God whereby He is in control but at the same time gives us free will. Whereby He does not change yet He responds to our prayers. Whereby He loves us yet allows us pain." There are many answers here that gives reasons we should pray. I think the verse I quoted above speaks to the aspects I mentioned. By saying a "FERVENT" prayer availeth much, the verse at least implies that not all prayers are equal. It also more than implies that God responds to at least some prayers. There are examples in the Bible where Examples are given of the outcome being changed through prayer and repentance. (Adding 15 years to a man's life, delaying the destruction of Nineveh, etc.) I believe, though God is in control, it is more of the control a King has over his subjects, backed up by unlimited power. And even though He can control our every step, He chooses not to, unless it is directly connected to His plan. Otherwise, like a king, he allows us to live our lives desiring that in the process we acknowledge Him. If God controlled everything that happens, all would be saved, there would be no sin, etc. Jesus would not have needed to die. Yet this does not mean that He is not in control. I also believe that God sees our hearts and that our hearts, when focused on Him can move God to intercede for us. (heart corresponding to fervent) And just like a king, the closer we get to God (through prayer which is talking to God and through spending time in His Word which is listening to Him) the more He will intercede for us. He will also use us more because we are more available to be used. Please don't take me wrong, I am not lowering God to the level of an earthly king. Only using concepts I can understand to try an relate to a God that is far beyond my comprehension. God is so beyond our understanding that the opinions of two people which seem in total contradiction to each other can both be correct. Like God being in total control of us yet not controlling the things we do. There is also the story in Daniel I believe where an angel tells Daniel that God heard his prayer and sent the answer as soon as Daniel prayed it but that the angel had been fighting to get there with the answer. If God had been controlling all things at that time, would the answer not been instantaneous. Again God could have done so. Why didn't He? Because He is God and His ways are above our ways. So keep praying. Someone's healing may depend on you. Your very life span may depend on you. Someone getting saved may depend on you!
God invites us to join Him in His work in this world, and one of the main vehicles that He has put in place is the power of prayer. God is always at work, and He knows the ultimate outcome of every situation, but He allows us the priviledge of being involved. Jesus said "Come follow me." This is an invitation from the Lord of the Universe to join Him in His work. And together we can change the world!
This question still intrigues me as well. I have battled with the question over many years and have given myself philosophical responses, but am now content with this short opinion I present. There is a doctrine of foreknowledge by God and this has also been a challenge, but have come to understand that who we are has been foreknown by The Almighty. I believe that God will not change, but we shall always change: what He has predestined will not be changed. This I link to my personal reading of the Book of Psalms and I realise that people who wrote psalms would generally start with moaning and complaining but after giving God access to their hearts, it is THEIR attitude that changes, and they start to worship. I am of the opinion that as Believers we are supposed to live our lives within the will of our Heavenly Father, and we do, we shall have the desires of our hearts fulfilled. If we are in Him, our desires shall be in line with His will for our lives, and w shall thus have our prayers 'answered'. Our Father knows what is best for us and will not allow us to have what is not good for us, unless it is meant to teach us a lesson, like in Psalm 66:10-15. A specific case in point that many Believers use to argue that God changes is the story of king Hezekiah in 2Kings 20:1-11 where the prophet Isaiah was instructed to go tell the king that "Thus says the Lord: 'Set your house in order, for you shall die, and not live.'" Hezekiah prayed to God and God spoke to the prophet before he (the prophet) even left the middle court of the palace to go tell Hezekiah that he would not die, but he would instead have 15years added to his life. Was it about Hezekiah's prayer or was it about God? I believe it was about God wanting to display His greatness and teach His people something from the event. I believe God did not change, it was Hezekiah who changed and trusted in God. [Oh, in due time Hezekiah did die!] All in all I believe that God does not change, but he will ALWAYS answer prayers that are in line with His will. We shall be able to pray according to that will if we abide in Him. Just like the "True vine" expression used by Christ, a vine branch will never desire to produce strawberries! So our prayers will always be according to His will if we are in Him and He will graciously deal with us and our circumstances in line with His will, which is always for our own good.
Prayer to My personal Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ are the "most important minutes/hours of my every single day and has been only increasing in a "drawing closer unto Him" relationship! He is 'my everything' for "we can do all things through Christ who strengthens me(us)".(Philippians 4:13) This is my testimony of His grace, eternal love and devine fellowship He chose and chooses to have with me, His child of God" "Praise God that He provided a savior! And, His name is Jesus Christ!" --Andy--
“You can do more than pray after you have prayed; but you can never do more than pray until you have prayed.” - A. J. Gordon “God does nothing except in response to believing prayer.” - John Wesley “God shapes the world by prayer. Talking to men for God is a great thing, but talking to God for men is greater still.” - E.M. Bounds THAT above was my initial response to this... short and simple. NOW some time later I have a different understanding of prayer and would add THIS: To pray is to relinquish control and to let God take over. The only way to worry about nothing is to pray about everything. God is EVERYWHERE, so pray ANYWHERE. Courage is fear that said its prayers to the Lord. Power in prayer comes from believing in God's promises. Prayer is exhaling the spirit of man/earth, and inhaling the spirit of God/the divine. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God. (Mother Theresa said this!) Prayer reminds us that we are not in control and puts us in direct connection with the One who IS. Time spent in prayer is NEVER wasted. Prayer is the best armour against all trials. God can do more in a second than we could do in a lifetime so praying accomplishes THAT. The more you pray, the less you worry. The more you pray, the closer you become to God each time. The more you pray, the more you find God's touch in your life! The more you pray, the spiritual growth that is realized is AMAZING! THESE are my findings in prayer. BE BLESSED! in HIM, Lynn
My response is very brief because having read through all the previous responses (and gained so much learning and perspective), I find that almost everything I would have said in response has been well said. I will add only that prayer is an expression of our faith and submission to God. In addition to God being in control and knowing the outcome, he also knows our hearts and minds and knows what we will pray (and with what motive) long before we pray it. Therefore, I used to wonder why it was needful for me to pray when God already knows. He gave me understanding, however, that when I take my questions, desires, needs, praise, and more to him, I am making a physical expression of my faith, trust and submission to him, surrendering to his will. Mo.
This is not universal for every prayer but perhaps it is not God's mind that needs changing but ours. Since God is omniscient, He knows the outcome of each and every situation. Perhaps the outcome we desire isn't what will ultimately bring God glory. Perhaps God wants us to pray in order for us to be at peace with His will and plan.
The question is from a fatalistic point of view, suggesting we are powerless and existence is futile because God knows everything. The point of prayer is that we don't. Since we don't know it all, prayer helps us to understand an uncertain future when God answers us through the Holy Spirit. When God made us, He gave us free will, which is evidenced in Genesis 2 and 3. Free will offers choices and is a wonderful gift from Him. Of course we want to make the right choices and praying is the way to ask for guidance from the Lord in making those. There are many reasons to pray but praying because we have salvation in Jesus Christ and He told us to pray, and because we have free will and don't know the future, seems to me to answer the question.
Yes, why pray, is a very important question. For any difficult question like this one is, it is always helpful to recollect about the life of man-Jesus (anthropos-Jesus). No question that many verses in the Bible proved that Jesus, the Creator God in Genesis and the Logos in the gospel according to John, prayed. In fact, he even prayed the whole night, as in, "And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God." (Luke 6:12). Still, it begs the question, why pray? This brings me to how you and I communicate. We use our physical senses of sight, hearing, feeling, gesturing, etc...albeit "material methods" of communicating. Without communication, how else can we understand each other? How can we learn or be guided by each other? Yet, this is a way to communicate with the "material world". How about the "spiritual realm"? Can we communicate with the "spirit" using "material or physical tools" like eyes, ears, etc? How could we be "on line" in a physical sense as in World Wide Web, unless we access the internet to learn, email, etc.? Similarly, the spirit-God, cannot be accessed except through spiritual means or venue. This is why we need to "pray". It is a vehicle to communicate spiritually to a "Spirit-Being". Regarding, why pray when we "cannot change God's mind"? Actually, God can "change or modify" his will, but within his limits of perfect judgment. Didn't he delay the destruction of Nineveh, "haggled" with Abraham as to how many "just people" needed to save Sodom & Gomorrah? How about Adam in the garden of Eden? He did not like Adam to eat the fruit of knowledge of good and evil and he could have "forced" Adam to follow. Yet, He did not because His perfect judgment allows Adam to "freely choose". Remember, God said, "…not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them," declares the LORD. But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days," declares the LORD, "I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them," declares the LORD, "for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more"(Jer. 31:32-34; Heb. 8:10) Yes, the promised Holy Spirit by the Father to the Son, who sacrificed his life for remission of sins and subsequently for us to receive the Holy Spirit (John 16:7), is now available for in-dwelling and writing the "laws into our fleshly tables of our heart and mind" to empower us. The Holy Spirit working with the "spirit of man"(the "breath of life"), to nurture, guide, teach, direct, suggest, empower, seal us. Ultimately, prayer helps us develop the character through the Holy Spirit to be "one" with God in "wisdom".
Why Pray? I would like to highlight some points that are pieces of the 'relationship connection' avenues or pathways necessary for a 'communication link to and with God, Our Heavenly Father! First of all "God is Love". He created man as His most precious and valuable creation. Before he made the Earth and all of physical(seen and unseen) creation, He, The Father, Son and Holy Spirit were with His angels in Heaven. God wants our love and our undivided adoration to be directed to Him and Him alone as the most important focus of 'what is most important in our lives'. He is 'a jealous' God; He created time, Earth and everything for His children.(Exodus 20:5) We are "the apple of His eye" and His love for us is beyond our scope of understanding. "He alone deserves our adoration, love and praise, for Only He is God." Prayer to Him is our ultimate communication link! We can talk to Him and ask Him anything, anywhere and anytime! "We are so very special". THANK YOU LORD JESUS! My central point is this: Since He tells us to "seek the Lord in all our ways and Trust in Him in all that we do, say or think, to put Him first always", this requires 'a communication link'. God is Spirit, God is all righteous and all Holy and Pure. He gave us the undeserved privilege to ask Him for His 'favor' to be granted to us after Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden and "realized they were naked". Adam and Eve conversed/talked with God. Prayer is our means to acknowledge Him, to adore Him, to ask of Him, to plead with Him, to most importantly, Praise Him very, very directly. God tells us "he hears and answers our prayers"; but, we have to learn to "be patient and wait upon the Lord". "He will never leave you nor forsake you". "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and He will guide you into all truth and righteousness". --Andy--
We pray because God ask us to do so. We pray to thank Him, to ask for forgiveness, to talk to Him, for healing, for guidance, etc. Nobody really knows God's mind, but we know that He is loving, righteous, and merciful. Some how beyond our understanding; God is able to to combine predestination with our free will. What we know for sure is in Romans 10:9 "If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." God does not lie or contradict Himself. It is that simple. If we just believed in predestination, it would not matter if we prayed or not, the end result would be the same. However, that it does matter is all over the bible.
Well, the point of prayer is that as a believer and followers of Jesus Christ, we have a close relationship with the Father in personal and in congregation as well. Through prayer we are seeking the LORD our God; through prayer we are knocking the door of heaven, and through prayer we are asking God for our salvation on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 7: 7-12). Certainly, we can not change God's mind but by our repentance and faith in Jesus Christ as the people of Nineveh did (Jonah 3: 1-10), we will be saved from God's wrath and gaining a salvation through prayer as Jesus has taught us how to pray (Matthew 6: 5-15). Amen?.
Best answer is the PURPOSE of prayer in the first place. It is NOT to control but lead you in his will. Best example is the occurred in the Book of Joshua in the event that occurred when he lost the battle at Ai following the fight of the first battle at Jericho. Joshua went outside the city and fell on the ground and prayed. God answered and said shut up and stand up you were told in the first place the will of the Father and your prayer is not valid. God DID NOT tell who was the cause said he would have known what the problem was in the first place. That means you don't pray when you KNOW Gods word.for answers he has already given.
Prayer is talking directly to our Father in Heaven; and I believe that it's just like when a child/ teenager/adult would talk to his/her parents. Our Heavenly Father likes to hear from each of His children because He loves us and cares about each of us. It's true that He knows everything about each one of us, but that doesn't mean He doesn't want to hear from us.
Why pray if God already knows what we are going to pray for? That is a shortened form of the question I would like to address. It is true that God already knows what we are going to pray because He knows the “end from the beginning.” (Isaiah 46:9-10) However, it is important to realize “how” God knows this. It isn’t that God is really smart and can figure out the future somehow. If that were the case, then the above question, in my opinion, would be relevant. The reason God knows the future is because it has already happened from His perspective. He is outside of time. Everything that will happen has already happened from “before the creation of the world.” (Ephesians 1:4; Ecclesiastes 3:15 NIV) I won’t go into any detail about the reason God knows the future other than to say it is due to the complicated concept of God’s Middle Knowledge (GMK) that happened before the creation of the world. Since GMK is the reason God knows the future, then the answer to the above question is simple. We pray now because that is what we did Before the Creation of the World. When we prayed then, God didn’t know what we were going to pray for because we have “free will”. You cannot foreknow “free will” otherwise it isn’t free. So, in answer to the original question, all the Scriptures that encourage prayer are relevant and God answers them as has been discussed elsewhere. However, there is another aspect to this question that is fascinating. Because everything has already happened from God’s perspective, it means that He can even answer prayers that change our “past.” How often have you gone to the mail box looking for an important letter that may bring good news? Have you prayed that the news would be good? That would seem like a silly prayer because the determination of the outcome has already happened when the letter was mailed. Your prayer can’t change the past, or can it? From God’s perspective outside of time, there is no past, present, or future regarding our lives. Everything to Him is a “now” and He has the option to enter into any event involving our past present or future. So, you see the point. If we prayed for a favorable outcome of an important letter from before the Creation of the World, then God could enter the past and change the letter in accord with our prayer. Had we not prayed then, the letter would not have been changed then. This realization adds additional meaning to Paul’s words to “pray continually” and “with all kinds of prayers and requests.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17; Ephesians 6:18)
One of the reasons that we pray is to thank God for the many blessings that He has bestowed upon us. We offer Him praise for being in our lives! Of course, as it states in the Bible, we 'say' when we pray. We also ask God to help us with many different things, such as, forgiveness (of others & ourselves), learning a variety of different things in the Bible, & asking for His help with many things, namely, help with becoming more like Jesus every day! We also pray in tongues, interceding for others, & praying in tongues for ourselves. Praying in tongues is like praying on 'the RED phone' (like the Batman phone to the commissioner)! You are speaking directly to God! You don't know what you're saying, the devil & his cohorts DEFINITELY don't know what you're saying, but God knows & you're speaking about Kingdom Business! You're speaking about the future, which starts as soon as you're done! When you want to pray for someone, maybe you don't know the person, you can intercede for that person by speaking in tongues! You can pray for people you DO know by praying in tongues, & you can pray for yourself by speaking in tongues, & you know what? You're DESTROYING the works of the devil! You are in the executive board room, talking DIRECTLY to God, about Kingdom Business, & as I previously stated, you're DESTROYING the works of the devil! How POWERFUL is that!
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