“What happens When You Pray?”

What Does Happen When You Pray? Let’s Ask the Teacher!

TOPIC: “What Happens When You Pray?”

     We will begin a new lesson series on this evening titled “What Happen When You Pray”.

     The two most famous persons in the New Testament, the Lord Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul, expressed something that they felt should be at the top of our priority list. This was very high on both of their agendas. And they expressed that it should be at the top of our non-negotiable list.

      But some valid questions would be: Exactly why should it be? Why does the two of them give this so much attention”? There must be a reason why the Son of God, and the most famous Apostle would say such things.

  • JESUS:  Luke 18:1- And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
  • THE APOSTLE PAUL:  I Thessalonians 5:17- Pray without ceasing.

     Since we’re told that we “should pray”, I think that another important question to ask would be:  What happens with our prayers when we do pray?

                             ADDITIONAL CONTEMPLATION QUESTIONS:

1). Will praying, really make a difference, in my situation (big or small)?

     2). When I pray, how often can I expect for my prayers to work: 25%, 30%, 50%, 75%, of the time? Because, if we would be perfectly honest, sometimes it seems like prayer is a waste of time.

     FIVE START STATEMENT: According to the Bible prayer “works” every time. It simply doesn’talways “work out” the way that we would like for it to every time.

     DEEP DOCTRINE: Our prayer requests are answered with a “yes” 100% of the time, when we _______________       _______       ________________.

     This is something that we must do based on what we know.

EXAMPLES:

          a). THE REQUEST:  Peace.   THE PROMISE: 1). Isaiah 26:3- Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

     2). Galatians 5:22- But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

     You would (by faith) simply say, “Lord I receive your peace in the middle of this tough situation. Why, because you said that you would keep me in perfect peace, if I keep my mind is stayed on thee.  And, since one of the fruits of the Spirit is peace, and since the Spirit is always present with me, I can always have peace”.

          b). THE REQUEST: Justice.  THE PROMISE: Romans 12:19- Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

     Often there is something that we must “do”. God said for us not to “avenge ourselves”. And if we do not move towards vengeance, He has promised that “vengeance will be His”.

     Again, you would (by faith) simply say, “Lord, I turn this situation over to you. Why, because you said……………..

          c). THE REQUEST: Giving.  THE PROMISE: Luke 6:38- Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

     Notice, once again there is something that you must “do”. This is followed by a 100% guarantee (a promise). Here you would say, “Lord, I freely give you 10% of my gross income. Why, because you said………..

FIVE STAR STATEMENT: To get God to answer your prayers, with a “yes”, 100% of thetime, always “Pray the Promises”.

MAIN POINT: When you pray on earth, something happens in heaven!

     1). Genesis 28:12-13; 17- 12 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. 13 And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; 17 And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.

     Notice that the “earth” is mentioned before “heaven”. Which means that something happens first on “earth”, that secondly, causes a reaction in “heaven”. Something “goes up” (ascending), that causes something else (angels) to “come down” (descending).

   HAND-OFF # 1:  Now, also notice who stands in the middle. Somebody is standing between your prayers, and heaven! You pray “on earth”, and that prayer is “handed-off’ to an angel, who is also on earth at that time. That angel gathers your prayers, and takes them directly to heaven. So, what does this mean?

FIVE STAR SENTENCE: Your prayers have an angelic “escort” straight to the throne room of God!

vs. 17 describes it as “passing thru a gate”. This is the gate of heaven.

     Now, this angelic escort, is not something that is new or uncommon. When we (our loved ones, family or church members) leave from earth, we/they are also given an “angelic escort”.

          1). Luke 16:22- And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

     When we take a closer look at the Bible, we can get a clearer picture of the “escorts”.

     QUESTIONS: How does people get from earth to heaven? How does prayer get from earth to heaven? How does prayer get form heaven to earth?

     1). II Kings 2:1; 11- And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. 11 And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

     2). II Kings 6:17- And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.

     3). Psalm 68:17 (ESV)- The chariots of God are twice ten thousand,thousands upon thousands; the Lord is among them; Sinai is now in the sanctuary.

     4). Isaiah 66:15- For, behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire.

     5). Zechariah 6:1-3- And I turned, and lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and, behold, there came four chariots out from between two mountains; and the mountains were mountains of brass. In the first chariot were red horses; and in the second chariot black horses; And in the third chariot white horses; and in the fourth chariot grisled and bay horses.

     6). I Chronicles 28:18- And for the altar of incense refined gold by weight; and gold for the pattern of the chariot of the cherubims, that spread out their wings, and covered the ark of the covenant of the Lord.

     HAND-OFF # 2: (Genesis28:13)- And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed;

     The picture here seems to indicate that Jesus is personally standing right there to receive your prayers. So, not only are the angels involved, when you pray, but Jesus is involved as well! What does this mean?

FIVE STAR STATEMENT: Your prayers do not get lost or misplaced. Every prayer that you pray will arrive in heaven.

            BUT THERE ARE A FEW EXCEPTIONS- PRAYER HINDERANCES:

1). I Peter 3:7- Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

2). Proverbs 28:9 (TLB)- God doesn’t listen to the prayers of those who flout the law.

3). Isaiah 59:2- But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

     Prayers don’t float around somewhere out in the universe, and accidentally land on Neptune. They go straight from “earth” to “heaven”. And this can happen every time you pray!!!

     PRAYER PROCESS: Now, let’s look at the “prayer process”, meaning, what happens when your prayers arrive in heaven!

     1). Daniel 10:12 (GNT)- Then he said, “Daniel, don’t be afraid. God has heard your prayers ever since the first day you decided to humble yourself in order to gain understanding. I have come in answer to your prayer.

     2). Psalm 91:15- He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

          POINT # 1- “Every time” you pray, God knows about it. Rest assured that God has heard your prayers. The very moment a prayer is formed in your mind, or comes out of your mouth, it is received in heaven. He hears our prayers, and doesn’t get them mixed up with another person’s prayers.

          POINT # 2- God always hear you the very first time that you pray. You must know that “you also can get one through”. You do not have to call on somebody else to do that. At various times we sometimes wonder if God is really listening to our prayers. Yes, He is!!!!

          POINT# 3- In the above listed verses, we see the “prayer process” (or the prayer cycle). We will refer to this as the: UP, IN, and OUT Process:

     Prayers go up, Jesus steps in, angels (answers) come out (of heaven). And this happens every time that we pray. You MUST believe this by faith.

     Prayer create (heavenly) activity EVERY TIME!!!!!  Your prayers cause angels (heaven) to move.

HAND-OFF # 3- Here, we want at look at what happens to your prayers, once they are handed-off in heaven.  Let’s now visit the “Throne Room of God”. Our prayers aretaken directly to the “Throne Room”.

     1). Revelation 8:3-4(KJV)- And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.

     2). Revelation 8:3-4 (AMP)- Another angel came and stood at the altar. He had a golden [a]censer, and much [b]incense was given to him, so that he might add it to the prayers of all the saints (God’s people) on the golden altar in front of the throne. And the smoke and fragrant aroma of the incense, with the prayers of the saints (God’s people), ascended before God from the angel’s hand.

     What is the purpose of the incense?

     “Sweet smelling smoke” is basically the picture that we have here. The incense represents our prayers “going up” to God. This represents that our prayers are pleasing to God. Just as incense carries a perfume odor, this depicts a picture that our prayers are scented with the righteousness of Christ.

POINT # 1- There is a throne room in heaven. Similar to the earthy tabernacle/tent that God told the chosen people to build for him while they were on earth. In His death, Jesus was the High Priest that made the sacrifice. And He also was the sacrifice.

 In the throne room of God, God is seated on the throne, and Jesus is seated on His right-hand side.

     1). Isaiah 6:1- In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.

     2). Hebrews 1:2-3- Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:

     3). Hebrews 12:2- Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

POINT # 2- Your prayers have an audience.

POINT # 3- Your prayers are brought into God’s Holy Throne room.

FIVE STAR SENTENCE: God wants you to come boldly before His throne of grace.

     1). Hebrews 4:16- Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

POINT # 4- Angels exit the throne room of God, return back to earth, to carry out God’s response (answer) to our prayers.

     1). Psalm 103:19-21- 19 The Lord hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all. 20 Bless the Lord, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word. 21 Bless ye the Lord, all ye his hosts; ye ministers of his, that do his pleasure.

     2). Psalm 103:19-21 (TLB)- 19 The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything there is. 20 Bless the Lord, you mighty angels of his who carry out his orders, listening for each of his commands. 21 Yes, bless the Lord, you armies of his angels who serve him constantly.

     3). Psalm 103:19-21 (NIV)- The Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all. 20 Praise the Lord, you his angels, you mighty ones who do his bidding, who obey his word. 21 Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts, you his servants who do his will.

     ***** We have prayed for others, and others have prayed for us. This may happen over a span of many months and possibly years. Many times, we are not aware that someone has mentioned us, or mentioned our situations, to God. And then one day, all of a sudden, that prayer request will manifest!

      That prayer petition was stored up in heaven. It did not cease to exist.

          1). I Samuel 1:10-11; 20; 27-28- 10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the Lord, and wept sore. 11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O Lord of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.

20 Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the Lord. 27 For this child I prayed; and the Lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him: 28 Therefore also I have lent him to the Lord; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the Lord. And he worshipped the Lord there.

     We must exercise patience when we pray. God will not always answer our prayers right away. He is wanting, and waiting, on you to trust Him.

  1. Time is not the issue.
  • Trust is the issue.

1). Numbers 23:19 (KJV)- God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

2). Numbers 23:19 (ESV)- God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?

3). Ezekiel 24:14 (ESV)- I am the Lord. I have spoken; it shall come to pass; I will do it. I will not go back; I will not spare; I will not relent; according to your ways and your deeds you will be judged, declares the Lord God.”

4). Numbers 14:28 (GNT)- Now give them this answer: ‘I swear that as surely as I live, I will do to you just what you have asked. I, the Lord, have spoken.