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Does Prayer Change the Mind of God? Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
August 25, 2022 9:00 am

Does Prayer Change the Mind of God? Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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August 25, 2022 9:00 am

Even after several days of Pastor J.D.’s teaching on prayer, we might still feel like our prayers aren’t heard by God. He gives one more attempt to meet us where we are.

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Today on Summit life with JD Greer, sometimes with Ralph outside of the will of God, and God hears us, but he doesn't give those things because he has a better plan. When you and I come and pray. We pray for father and we ought to say God I think this is your will, but it's not your will. I trust you was a good dad to give me what I ought to have a not my will but yours be done.

After their religion. JD Greer, as always, I'm your host Molly benefits. Today we conclude our short series on prayer called ask now if you missed any part of this series, you can always catch up on any previous so do you still feel like our prayers aren't heard by God even after listening for the last several days. If so, you're not alone. In today's message Pastor Jenny Greer makes one more attempt to meet us right where we are in this sentiment, its title does prayer change the mind of God. So grab your Bible, let's jump back in is the preordained way to God executing God has hardwired the universe so that it runs on prayer Moses in the story does not dwell on the unchangeable purposes of God, as he does the unchanging promises of God and how they apply to the situation, God has sovereignly placed you in certain situations precisely for the purpose of praying his promises and changing his plans for you to employ divine power to create a different destiny than the one that everybody is headed to God sovereignly put you there. What you see the problem for you to ask. He wanted you to be there. That's why he placed you there. I want you to let that really sink in for a minute okay before you move on God have sovereignly put you in the situation now with all the problems that you see with all the dysfunctional people that are a part of your life porch you there to see it and to remember his promise and release his power into the situation like Moses, he has sent you down into a family or group of friends or neighborhood. Some of you look around your family and you have thought, how did I become a part of this family. Why did God give me these people to call my friend. The reason is because he put you there is his emissary.

He wanted somebody to see the problem and wanted somebody to believe in God's willingness to help and you were his instrument like Moses, you have been sent down. What I'm trying to tell you guys is the system is rigged. The whole system is rigged. The point you there sovereignly in that place.

You perceive the problem believe the promise and releases power. You see a lot of times people talk about the sovereignty of God. They talk about it as if it keeps them from action. They say silly things like wealth God sovereign than what is a matter what I do because of I don't do it and somebody also does do it Scripture actually point you to be exact opposite place is realizing that God sovereignly put you in places is the estimate of his power. That's what actually gives you the motivation to pray and the confidence to speak my friend David Platt. He says it this way. Reflecting on this passage.

When we pray we take our God-given place and we use our God ordained privilege to participate with God in the accomplishment of his purposes on the planet. Don't let me take this one step farther and share with you an amazing I would call it life-changing truth that God used recently to revolutionize my own prayer life.

One of the primary reasons that God saved you was to put you in a place to pray for others. Here's what I said. I went back to an old one. My favorite devotional is called a gospel primer and in this book he talks about the position that you and I have in prayer. We talk about in Ephesians 1 work God explains that he is shows in us before the foundation of the world. This is what the author of this book points out, when God chose me in Christ before the foundation of the world do not merely choose me to be holy and blameless. That's a quote from Ephesians 1. He also chose me again from Ephesians 1 to be there for him and love. That's about prayer should memorize Ephesians 1 last year and I totally missed that you know how I missed it but I missed God shows me to be before him in love with X as a chosen one of God. I was saved to pray whenever I come to God's presence to behold him or should never make requests of you. I am arriving at the pinnacle of God's saving purposes. For me this is why God put me here if what he wants to do it is his will for my life. How can I not till the end and the sincerity presentation, especially when I consider the people links that God endured so that I might enter his presence in prayer believer, you are chosen to pray. You are chosen to pray imparted. That means that you been sovereignly put where you are right now so that you can say God let your kingdom come here and let your will be done in this moment because that is the means by which God makes his kingdom, and lets his will be done as your prayers. In light of that, I told you two things last week that you need to be absolutely full of. If you are going to be an effective prayer. There were the word, and the spirit because the word in the spirit of the two means by which God let you know what his kingdom wants and what his will is the word Laura told you that this is not just a a textbook for you to learn to memorize spiritual truths from this is a book of promises to be claimed. I've heard that there are 3000 promises individual promises in that book, and we are supposed to claim every single one. This is a book that you're supposed to read on your knees. I do not want a single promise that God has for me to not come to pass in the life of my kids not come to pass in my life or in your life. That's why we often say, don't just read your way through the Bible, pray your way through the Bible. It is a book of promises for prayer into that in. Last week I gave you little acrostic. I said, you should use as you read the Bible. It's a good outline. It's the here method AGR here a chance for highlight highlight any promise of Scripture that you see in whatever passage you read and examine make sure you're applying the promises correctly apply figure out where it applies to you and to the people in your life and in our response respond by praying and say, God, you put me here to see this promise, and I know the problem. It goes into, and I want your kingdom to come in your will to be done. The second thing I said you ought to be full of is the spirit of God because you ought to be letting him guide you as you pray to show you where and how to extend God's kingdom refer to this as listening prayer I told you that prayer is not just talking. That's what we think about it. It's also listening you not just supposed to pray to God you're supposed to play with God. The spirit prays through you before the word in the spirit and you will be closer to what Moses experiences in Exodus 32 because that's exactly what happened. God revealed his will, and Moses knew God's word.

The spirit showed them what the pray and Moses prayed it and it happened that's what we give you the statement. Last week I gave the statement the prayers of her by heaven of the one to start in heaven. That's what happened on the mountain. Moses perceive what heaven wanted, and he prayed it and it happened. So now I will use that understanding the prayer is that's the core understand prayer will use that to shape the answer to that question would you do if your praying persistently and you're still not getting an answer in the prayers in your prayer not been answer the way you think it should be answer the beginning is that a handful of things that might be going on in light of the story number one, you might not be a Christian and I hate to start negative but I thought there a lot of people were praying. One why got them answer their prayer and this is the answer. Only Christians are appointed to pray this way only. They are walking in the kingdom and only their walking according the will of God. Nowhere in Scripture, not one place does God ever promise to answer the prayers of unbelievers now. God sometimes does answer the prayer of unbelievers because he is compassionate and gracious, but he has a promise to do that we promises to hear believer's and I know some of you here that and you say whoa.

Well, that sounds exclusive and it sounds me. He listened God wants you to be his child. It could not be more inclusive God is offered to you right now become my child is paid for your sin on the cross and he said that you will surrender to him as Lord, and receive him as your Savior. You can become his child today and then God will begin to answer and working your prayer the way he does any of his other children, but there a lot of people whose prayers are answered as or not they're just not Christians or a variation on this would be Christians were really walking with God. David said I regard iniquity in my heart. The Lord will not hear me if I'm a Christian who knows that he has said in his life, then God will not be here in my prayers because it disqualifies me from him. That's reasonable.

One reason number two it might not be answer you the way that you think you should need an answer because something in you needs to change. Scripture says a sometimes God grant a request because Raskin with legs for example the wrong motives. James chapter 4 verse three is really clear about this. James says you ask receive because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your sinful passions and sometimes God will use the delay in an answer in order to work on your hearts and guard to confront you about these wrong passions.

I use the example of some parents. I knew that prayed for a decade for a wayward son after the decade was out there like you know what we realize was that we were the ones really have a problem that there was a lot of stuff in us and God needed a change and he may not a change in Eddie and not any answer prayer. The moment that we ask that unanswered prayers often God's way of purifying you, even in the story, even in this story we can see God working on Moses his heart. The reason the reason that God can't say the Moses, your people that you brought up is not because God had forgotten that they were God's people.

He keeps saying that because he listened he wants Moses to Phil about Israel the way that he feels about Israel to what he is doing is putting Moses and the situation were Moses his heart can change to be like God's heart where Moses loves the waiting. God loves Christ likeness for Moses, not just deliverance for Israel, was the goal that is God's first goal in your prayers. Also he wants you to become Christlike and on answered prayer is often the way that he purifies us number three. It might be that your prayers don't align with God's will.

If the prayers that started in heaven are the ones that are heard by heaven that it makes sense that sometimes were praying things that are not heaven's wishes. The way the apostle John says it the apostle John says and this is the confidence we have toward him that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. We know that if he hears with a request that we asked of him. What that means is there. Sometimes we pray outside of the will of God, and God hears us, but he doesn't give those things to us because he has a better plan. When you and I come and pray. We pray to a father. And we ought to say God I think this is your will, but it's not your will.

I trust you was a good dad to give me what I ought to have and not my will but yours be done. So it might be that you're just praying and not according to the will of God.

That is because of been wrong with you is means that we can always receive exactly what God wants is a bright God of this is according will your listening to a message titled change the mind of God here on Senate like Judy Greer will rejoin this teaching in just a moment, but I wanted to tell you about a daily email devotional from Pastor JD that you can sign up for today the busyness of life can quickly check out any joint deal in our walk with God. So as we do make each morning with the words in the morning devotional even follow along with our current teaching here on the program so you can stay plugged into these messages regardless of your schedule went better way to remember and curse all that we are learning about prayer right now I think plug-in even after the show is over.

Sign up for this free now.

Let's return for the final moment in our teaching titled ask once again here's passed before the start of a variation on that one. But the latest little heads up on this and I was told us whether to put this woman here with a detailed want to put it but there are some of you that I know this is what you struggle with and your nerdy enough that you can appreciate the next 4 1/2 minutes okay have the rest of you apologize for your prayer circumvents God's processes sometimes are prayers on answer the what you pray because you try to circumvent God's processes sometimes and pray for God to overturn processes that God is established in running the world. For example, God set up our universe to run according to natural laws and that means that miracles are, by definition, rare God does not typically rewrite the laws of nature through prayer in many things including sicknesses, typhoons, rainstorms these things are in our world because of the curse of sin and they operate now.

According to natural laws.

God does not routinely interrupt those laws. Occasionally, yes, commonly know this is why by the way, God typically doesn't answer all the sports prayers to get break. The game is not usually determined by who has a prayer prayer ministry is your cochair, you probably shouldn't depend on a prayer strategy to guard against three-pointers, you should work on your defense, it is rare that you to see a three-pointer just swatted inexplicably out of the sky evidently by an angel, because Sr. Margaret was free and that her little nephew would win the game. This is not how God works that you feel more spiritual example we might pray when I pray God save everybody in Afghanistan tonight and have them all believe on Jesus.

Now that's a prayer that seems to align with what God wants right yet it goes against two processes that God has set up and see people come to salvation.

One process is that God intends to use his church to preach the gospel try to circumvent that too is that he cooperates with our free will and seeing the gospel go forward as a praying that God will magically apart from those things make everybody in Afghanistan a Christian tonight is not a prayer that God has invited us to pray. Which brings me to another observation. God's answer to prayer in the Bible often seem to have a regard for our free will now warning the students are making it might hurt. Matthew 2337 Jesus said this talk about why Israel was not coming to believe in him. He suggested Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how often I wanted to gather your children together like a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but few more willing. Here's what was hard understand what is Jesus is the reason that they haven't come to him it's because they resisted they want willing. They work freely choosing to come to him now. Here's what are there certain places in the Bible that clearly teach that Jesus is the one who draws John 644 all who come to the sun or come because the father drew them.

John 637 all the father drawls will come to Jesus I but then there are other verses like this one where God is saying. Actually you want willing I was trying to draw you the invitation had been extended, but you were willing to come, so there are certain these processes as were praying God is working through these processes and that may not be wiretapping the way you think it happened.

Here's another example, we might be asking God to deliver us from something that God intends as the means of is accomplishing something in us. Acts 1422 Paul talking to the new believers in Antioch strengthening their souls telling them that through many tribulations are suffering we must enter the kingdom of God, suffering and tribulation is how God has purposed to prepare you for his kingdom, which means that when you are asking God to always deliver you from suffering tribulation. You shouldn't be surprised when he doesn't always do it because those are the very means that he is appointed for producing what he wants in you. You are free to ask him to deliver you from those things. Paul did, but you should not be surprised when you hear the answer that Paul got, which is no I'm not going to deliver you from that suffering because my grace is sufficient for you, and my strength will be made perfect in your weakness, my strength is not only made perfect in the answer to that prayer. My strength as can be made perfect in the weakness that I leave you in and producing my strength in you is better than even giving you what you are asking for some time trying to circumvent God's processes. One more on this before I go to the last maybe you pray for deliverance from some inner struggle for some temptation and God hasn't given you that deliverance yet because his plan is to use the struggle to produce but even greater in you that little me and explain what I mean, John Newton wrote the hymn amazing Grace wrote a series of letters when he was an old man, but I will now call the letters of John Newton, one of my favorite ones. He wrote when he was 86 years old and he was complaining to a friend in this letter that he had prayed about something first 60 years inward temptation and struggle that God would deliver him from any says I'm 86 years old and it's as bad now as it's ever been negative for years I could not understand why God would deliver me from this because I prayed and I thought it was as well is now, is an 86-year-old man understand why. Is it because God is use the ongoing presence of the struggle to remind me how desperately I need his grace and because I know I need his grace I can be a help to other people who struggle because I can point them to the grace that I have found for myself and I got healed this to me when I was a 26-year-old young man then probably what would have happen is I would've gotten proud and forgotten what it was like a struggle, and I would be any help to anybody. So God has left this struggle so that I would go even deeper into his grace, so that I could be a better instrument of his grace and I would be if I'd walked in total righteousness all the time. You see, maybe God is leaving you with that struggle, because he wants you to learn to cling to God's grace to that teenager who has a same-sex attraction. Maybe God hasn't delivered you from it fully because maybe he wants you to be a testimony to your friends that you're going to conform your life to God's word that God is better even when every desire in your heart is going the other way you would rather have the kingdom of God than you would anything that's in your heart. Maybe he's intending to use those doubts that you have to take you deeper into his truth to get you beyond the superficial answers hen the press into the depths of who God is. That's why God didn't take away my doubts when I asked him if he was inviting me to go deep in him and I'm so glad that I went.

Here's number five. The last reason humanity answer your prayer the way you think he should maybe he's delaying his answer until his return. Your one of my favorite unknown scenes in the Bible happens in Revelation 5 when right before Jesus a good way to bring in the last days. He talks about these bowls of incense around his throne, which represent the prayers of his people in here.

You got beat by UBS to pour them out what what does a picture of is all these prayers that have been prayed by the church that never got an answer on earth and what is happiness is Jesus brings in the last days is like he is going to fulfill all belongings of her hard and never got answered on earth. Maybe you desire to be married. Maybe desire to have a family maybe was a broken relationship that we wanted restored or broken body or something that God says I'm not gonna give you that in that chapter on earth you get to experience that for the rest of eternity because all the promises of God are yes in Christ Jesus, every promise for blessing every promise for healing every promise for prosperity. They're all yours. They may not be yours in this little veil of tears we call life.

But they will be yours in eternity. So God might delay his answer until the final consummation that is many and herded his capital bowl right there beside his throne. Metaphorically speaking, you can answer them all.

For the rest of eternity to see there are five reasons why God may not be answering your prayer in the way that you think he should.

But let's return to the store one last time. Because this story shows you in the midst of an answered prayer. The one thing you can be sure is not happening.

See the children of Israel assumed when God was a little late, but he abandoned them. I thought it was a crazy, totally insane freak out after all that they'd seen, but here's my question. Haven't you and I seen even greater things in Israel saw really really get into the true meaning of the story knows this is actually giving the people a picture on that mountain of what Jesus would one day do and much more dramatic fashion for us, like Moses, Jesus stood in the gap between the anger of a righteous God, and the sin of his people, like Moses, Jesus offered for God to take his life rather than to destroy us. See, Moses only offered that the God God actually took Jesus up on it and Jesus did give his life for us in our place.

God said to Moses, but it will result got to the Moses.

I'll destroy the children of Israel, and I'll take you Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane replied to note, you destroy me and keep them in Jesus shed his blood so that God could keep us as a part of his kingdom. Jesus was the mediator who would rather die than let us perish see all of that shows me that when I feel alone when I thought I got a slight enough I got not answer my prayer and even sometimes I feel abandoned and prayer is not because he actually has abandoned me. He gave his life for me so that I would never have to feel abandoned because of that. I know that God hears you when I pray I know that I'm a precious son.

I know that I can leave my request at his feet and I can trust whatever he's doing in ways not know when I think you should be doing whatever he's doing is for my good could prove that we point himself in harm's way so that he could deliver me from the punishment of my sin I be totally honest with you, have a hard time doing this consistently is when I pray about some of this bothered me.

I try to lay the feet of Jesus and almost as soon as I get about Mondays I pick it back up and put back on my shoulders. But what I realize the stories and passages like this one is that I got a heavenly father who knows when I every sparrow in my life falls and he says you can leave your burdens with me. Cast your burden upon the Lord, he will sustain leave it with him and trust that he is hurt you and is working and that is answering because he prove that on the cross yesterday by your head, believe or do you see the privilege of God is given you in prayer to those you who may not be believers yet. Are you ready to receive this invitation become God's child answered prayers were the many benefits that comes with receiving God's offer of salvation. Jesus taught in the cross to save you because you to surrender to him and come back to him when you're ready he's ready. You are right now believer. Let me ask you this, where where where Scott sovereignly appointed you and placed you to pray where I related take up that position and then a trusted not so sweet to trust in Jesus in the know that you're there where you are because of his choice because he's ready to hear you.

He appointed you to pray by God to participate does not bring a new dimension to our prayer lines. If the summit life with pastor JD Greer. We'd like to give you a very encouraging new resource this month when a set of three guides that will help you to pray for three personal areas of your life. Praying for your kids for your parents and your community praying for our parent is a way in which we can continue to honor them every day praying for our kids when the kids of those closest to us brings wisdom and guidance to these precious minds that we've been entrusted with praying for our community as a way of loving and caring for those around us. And even those we don't necessarily know personally will be glad to send you these books to express our gratitude for your financial support to get today enjoying our mission to bring the gospel into center for donate by calling 863-3952 20 or you can request that when you get online. JD now before we close. Let me remind you that I signed up for our email list when mining is the best way to stay up-to-date with pastor James latest blog post. Also make sure you resort to hi Molly benefits inviting you to join us again tomorrow is another teaching series on the topic of prayer. Continue this Friday on my team

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