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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 116

Hindered Prayer continued...

Isaiah 59:1-2, “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from God; and your sins have hidden his face from you, so that He will not hear.”

It’s easy to blame everything on the devil. Even though he is the enemy of our souls, even though he roams about as a roaring lion seeking whom he might devour, he is also oftentimes a convenient scapegoat. It is man’s iniquity that separates him from God, and it is man’s sins that hide God’s face from him, and cause Him not to hear.

The devil can’t make you do anything! He is not the playground bully who twists your arm behind your back until you cry uncle, nor is he able to override your faculties, ability to reason, or ability to choose, unless you give him license and permission.

Sin separates man from God. This ought to be the first lesson for any and all new believers, because it not only highlights the destructive power of sin, but also confirms that indeed we can set up barriers between ourselves and God, to the point that we become separated from Him.

Seeing as telling individuals that their iniquities can separate them from God is about as popular as telling them they must stop sinning and repent, most preachers and evangelists choose to skirt this topic, and talk about anything else instead.

It’s not love keeping them silent, or sympathy, or tolerance – as some would have you believe – it is cowardice, the desire to be loved by the world, and the inability to stand for anything when standing would come at a price.

I’m sorry if I sound mean-spirited, but I have no sympathy for cowards, especially when said cowards are masquerading as the shepherds of God’s sheep, while doing the greatest disservice to the Body of Christ.

Either preach the truth, or find another line of work! Either preach the truth, or stop calling yourself Apostle, Prophet, or Bishop. Just in case you haven’t noticed it yet, we are in dire straits…not only as a nation, but as a species. We have allowed iniquity, perversion, and sin to corrupt the very moral fiber that kept this civilization together, and rather than try to fix it, rather than try to repent and return to some semblance of wholesomeness, we are barreling full steam ahead toward a very predictable ending.

We are neither the first generation, nor the first civilization to have thought itself invincible, nor are we the first to have given itself over to perversion and sin. The outcome of such choices is verifiable throughout human history, and if we think that being more technologically advanced than our ancestors will somehow keep us from ending up the same way, we are only fooling ourselves.

Often times it isn’t the devil hindering our prayers, it is our iniquity and sin causing God to hide His face from us and compelling Him not to hear. Truth is truth, no matter how painful, and I just served up a full serving.

Before the angry correspondence starts pouring in, if you attempt to disprove me, please do not attempt to do so based on your feelings, opinions, or worldly rationale, but rather biblically. Seeing as you can’t disprove what I just asserted biblically, you now have the choice of either receiving the painful truth, or rejecting it, and hating me for telling it to you as an added bonus.

God’s hand is not short, and his ear is not heavy. God is not impotent, He is not reticent, He is not distracted, nor does He love His creation any less if He does not answer a prayer.

On the one hand we have the promises of God, that we will receive whatever we ask of Him, that He will answer our prayers, and give heed to our cries, and on the other hand we have His warning, that if iniquity and sin are found in our hearts, it will cause separation, and force Him to hide His face from us.

No, these are not contradictory scriptures, nor do they cancel each other out, one scripture simply explains why the other sometimes doesn’t come to pass.

If God isn’t answering a prayer, or a petition, the first thing we must take stock of is our spiritual walk, and what we have allowed to take root in our heart. Are we pursuing righteousness? Are we pursuing holiness? Are we wholly committed to the cause of Christ? Is Jesus Lord and King of our life in perpetuity? All these are questions we must answer for ourselves, and if there is anything that must be remedied, if there is anything that must be repented of, we must do so before we can hope to receive an answer to our prayers.

Our iniquity builds a wall between us and God, and until that wall is removed through repentance, God will not answer, no matter how arduously we persist in our prayers.

Sin offends God! Sin causes God to hide His face from us, and not hear our petitions.

John 9:31, “Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshipper of God and does His will He hears him.”

No, this verse is not referring to the sinner who comes to the foot of the cross in repentance. This verse is not referring to those whose hearts have been pierced through by the word of God, and desire to receive Christ. This verse is referring to those who harbor the ongoing sentiment that they can live as they please and still get their prayers answered whenever they so desire.

If anyone is a worshipper of God, and does His will, God hears them. Much as we would like to bypass certain scriptures, much as we would like to pretend they are not there, much as we come out with new versions of the Bible each more watered down than the last, the truth still stands, and we can do nothing to change it.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you MIke!!
my spirit bears witness 100%!
Amen!