“… in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes” (Ben Franklin). Maybe so, if one lives with only the values of this world. But what of the values of the eternal Kingdom, that knows no limitations and interacts with those “who are in the world but not of the world” (Jn.17:16). Can a believer in Christ live with the certainty of answered prayer? It all depends on your starting point.
The apostle John understood the certainty of answered prayer. He makes four clear statements in 1 John 5:14-15.
- And this is the confidence/assurance/openness that we have with Him (14)
- That if we ask anything according to His will He hears us (14)
- And if we know that He hears us whatever we ask (15)
- We know that we have the requests which we asked from Him (15)
Again he wrote, in 1 John 3:21-22.
- Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence/assurance/openness with God (same phrase as 5:14)
- And whatever we ask we receive from Him (21)
- Because we keep His commands and do the things pleasing before Him (22)
Notice the framework for certainty of answered prayer.
- Our assurance is in Him, who both hears and answers prayers
- We choose to live a life of obedience before Him.
Mark reminds us of the words of Jesus. “Have faith in God” (11:22). A “mountain moving” faith can transform and change anything that seems impossible. And then Jesus, with full confidence in answered prayer, states “I say to you, everything as much as you pray and ask, believe that you have received and it will be to you” (24). There is no ambivalence in the words of Jesus. When our faith is placed solely in God, we can ask largely and stand in assurance that God has both heard and answered our prayers.
Last weekend, at Family Camp, we prayed for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and God answered. The word was proclaimed, the truths of the Gospel upheld and an atmosphere of expectancy permeated the air. The Spirit moved the hearts of people to seek Him for divine healing, for family restoration, for family salvations. The prayer team “went to work” and God met us.
What is your starting point? The certainty of answered prayer? Full confidence in God? Mountain moving faith? He awaits to hear from you. Don’t leave Him waiting.