The fourth ingredient necessary to move heaven with our prayers is sanctification.
As children of God we must be sanctified, or set apart for sacred use, and it is the sanctified that move the heart of God with their prayers and supplications. The debate has been raging for decades in this country whether God requires sanctification and holiness on our part, but it is a debate that should have been laid to rest at its genesis. God said ‘be holy for I am holy’, God said, ‘be holy in all your doings’, and if God said it, everything else is irrelevant. Yes, men’s opinions are irrelevant, that latest book on the Christian bookstore shelf that tells you holiness is for old fogies is irrelevant, because God supersedes all these, and if we are His children it is Him that we must obey.
It was only when Solomon kept the feast seven days and all of Israel with him, and held a sacred assembly observing the dedication of the altar for seven days; it was only after Israel had sanctified itself that the Lord appeared to Solomon.
2 Chronicles 7:12, “Then the Lord appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: ‘I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice.”’
There is conditionality to having our prayers answered, and Solomon had met it. Now God turns his attention to Israel, and gives Solomon a message for them.
2 Chronicles 7:13-15, “When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, 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 I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. Now My eyes will be open and my ears attentive to prayer made in this place.”
So there are three things that God says we must do if we want Him to hear us from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land. The first thing we must do, by God’s decree is to humble ourselves, the second is to pray and seek His face, and the third is turn from our wicked ways. There has been no addendum to this there has been no exemption clause included anywhere in the Bible, and so if we desire to see our prayers answered, we must do as God commands. In the olden days, it was the temple that God focused upon, it was toward the temple that His eyes were opened and ears attentive to hear the prayers made therein, but now, our hearts are His temple, and He is attentive to every prayer, made from the hearts of those who are humble, and repentant and in prayer.
The fifth ingredient necessary to move heaven with our prayers is earnestness.
James 5:17, “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.”
Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, flesh and blood, with his own quirks and shortcomings, yet when he prayed earnestly it did not rain for three years and six months. When he prayed, again, the heaven gave rain. We must pursue God earnestly, with seriousness and purpose and zeal. God must be our singular pursuit in this life, the one constant we are striving for, and when we stand before Him in our supplication, we must have the selfsame attitude. We do not know how long Elijah’s prayer lasted, we do not know how wordy it was, but what we do know with certainty, because the Word of God makes mention of it, is that he prayed earnestly.
No, it’s not only perfect people who get their prayers answered, because other than Jesus there are no perfect people, but it is sanctified people, and people who know what it is to pray earnestly that move heaven and the heart of God.
The sixth ingredient necessary to move heaven with our prayers is unity.
Whether praying in your family, your home group, or your church, when you pray for something as a body pray as one, pray in unity, and with a singular purpose. Be in one accord, let your voices reach heaven as one, and God’s eyes will be open, and His ears attentive.
It was a dark time for the church, a time wherein they were being hunted by Herod, a time when James the brother of John had just been killed with the sword, and Peter was in prison, guarded by four squads of soldiers, waiting to be tried as soon as Passover was finished. The church that remained in freedom did the one thing they could do, and that was pray. They did not go before the king or his emissaries, they didn’t have a petition drive or a bake sale to make their cause known, they gathered together, as one, and prayed. Throughout Peter’s stay in prison, the church kept him in prayer.
Acts 12:5, “Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church.”
Acts 12:12, ‘So, when he had considered this, he came to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose surname was Mark, where many were gathered together praying.”
From the moment of his incarceration, to the moment Peter knocked on Mary’s door where the brethren were gathered together, their prayers for Peter were continuous, unceasing, and as one. They prayed earnestly, they prayed passionately, they prayed selflessly, and God heard their prayers and sent an angel to free Peter from the shackles, and the prison.
If we desire to see our prayers answered, if we desire to see the power of God and the miracles of God in our lives, then we must have these six ingredients, and there can be no substituting them. God has called us to be His, sanctified and set apart, and we must fulfill that which He has called us to lest He behold us as He beheld Israel in the time of Ezekiel and say, ‘though they cry in My ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them.’
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.