Scriptures on Prayer

Spring 1990 – Vol.6 – No.1

The following passages deal with various aspects of petitioning God. May we be encouraged and instructed by what they tell us about this most wonderful privilege.

Promises on Prayer:

“Call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not.”
Jeremiah 33:3

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for everyone that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
Matthew 7:7-8

Adjuncts to Prayer:

1) Having within us the mind of Christ, that our prayers may be in accordance with His will and thus be answered.

“If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.”
John 15:7

“And this is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.”
1 John 5:14-15

“And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God”
Romans 8:27 (see v. 26 below)

2) Where God has clearly revealed His will, having faith that what He has promised He will indeed perform.

“But let Him ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a doubleminded man, unstable in all his ways.”
James 1:6-8 (on praying for wisdom)

3) Obedience to what God has already revealed of His will through scripture.

“And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.”
I John 3:22

“Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given, for he that hath, to him shall be given, and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath.”
Mark 4:24-25

4) Praying with others.

“Again I say unto you, that if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them.”
Matthew 18:19-20

5) Fervency in prayer, and unction of the Holy Spirit.

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”
James 5:16b

“Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.”
Romans 8:26

Hindrances to Prayer.

1) Unforgiven sin, lack of salvation.

“Behold, the Lord’s hand is not so short that it cannot save, neither is His ear so dull that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, so that He does not hear.”
Isaiah 59:1-2

2) Unconfessed sin, unforsaken sin.

“If I regard wickedness in my heart, the Lord will not hear.”
Psalm 66:18

3) Neglecting or spurning the scriptures.

“He who turns away His ear from listening to the law of the Lord, even his prayer is an abomination.”
Proverbs 28:9

“Then they will call on Me, but I will not answer; they will seek Me diligently, but they shall not find Me, because they hated knowledge.”
Proverbs 1:28-29

4) Insensitivity to the needs of others.

“He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor will also cry Himself and not be answered.”
Proverbs 21:13

5) Marital discord, failure to honor wife.

“You husbands likewise, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with a weaker vessel, since she is a woman; and grant her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.”
I Peter 3:7