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Basics to Prayer (Page 2)

What Does the Bible Have to Say About Prayer?

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Are There Requirements for Successful Prayer?

Yes, there are some requirements found in the Bible for successful prayer.

Successful prayer requires:

• A humble heart

    2 Chronicles 7:14
    If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. (NIV)
• Wholeheartedness
    Jeremiah 29:13
    You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (NIV)
• Faith
    Mark 11:24
    Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. (NIV)
• Righteousness
    James 5:16
    Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. (NIV)
• Obedience
    1 John 3:22
    And we will receive whatever we request because we obey him and do the things that please him. (NLT)

Does God Hear and Answer Prayer?

Yes, God hears and answers prayer. Here are several examples of this promise from the Bible.
    Psalm 34:17
    The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. (NIV)
    Psalm 91:15
    He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. (NIV)

Also:
1 Samuel 1:27
Psalm 4:3
Psalm 18:6
Proverbs 15:29
Isaiah 58:9
Luke 11:9

Why are Some Prayers Not Answered?

Sometimes our prayers are not answered. The Bible gives several reasons or causes for failure in prayer:

• Disobedience - Deuteronomy 1:45; 1 Samuel 14:37
• Secret Sin - Psalm 66:18
• Indifference - Proverbs 1:28
• Neglect of mercy - Proverbs 21:13
• Despising the Law - Proverbs 28:9
• Bloodguiltiness - Isaiah 1:15
• Iniquity - Isaiah 59:2; Micah 3:4
• Stubbornness - Zechariah 7:13
• Instability or Doubt - James 1:6-7
• Self-indulgence - James 4:3

Sometimes our prayers are refused. Prayer must be in accord with God's divine will.

    1 John 5:14
    This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. (NIV)

(See also - Deuteronomy 3:26; Ezekiel 20:3)

Continue to Page 3 of Basics to Prayer

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