What’s the difference between asking a friend to pray for me and asking a “capital-s” Saint to pray for me?
That’s a great question. The reason is because the Bible clearly teaches us
to pray for one another, but it doesn’t teach us to request the prayer of
somebody who is already home in heaven. The fact is, is to be absent from the
body is to be present with the Lord, and it says that we have only one
intercessor and only one mediator between God and man, and that is the man Jesus
Christ, in 1 Timothy 1.
So that’s the difference between asking a friend to pray for you, which is
clearly validated in the Bible, and asking a Saint that is already home in
heaven to pray for you, because there is no one in heaven, the Bible says, that
will mediate for us and no one in heaven that will pray for us, except Jesus
Christ himself, Hebrews 7 declares. And so that would be how I answer that
question. But it’s a great question.
We have to make sure, again, that we go to the Bible. Man, I grew up Catholic. I
love some of the Catholic tradition and some of the Catholic faith—the whole
concept of family, and the whole concept of communion, and the whole concept of
the holiness of going to church. I think it’s fantastic and I urge people to
embrace those elements.
But not everything that is taught in the Catholic church, and not everything
that is taught in any church is right. That’s why we have to always go back to
the Bible as the foundation for what we believe. Let us not offend the
Catholics, but let us not offend God. Okay? Let us go to the Bible, let us make
sure that we honor God, not man, not a pope, not me, not anybody. But God
himself is to be honored. And the Bible is to be honored. And when man adds to
the Bible or takes away from the Bible, then we put ourselves in a position
where we are making ourselves equal with God. And we must not do that. We must
humble ourselves and accept what God has given us. God has given us the Word of
Jesus said, “Ask my Father for anything and He’ll give it to you in my name.” So, do I pray to God or do I pray to Jesus and is there a big difference on that?
First of all, we pray to God as our Father and we go to Him through Jesus
Christ; through the blood of Jesus. Hebrews chapter 4 and Hebrews chapter 10
tell us that we come into His presence by the blood of Jesus Christ. We come to
Him in the name of Jesus Christ but we are coming to God as our Father. We’re
coming to our Father. Jesus came to introduce us to the Father and to bring us
to the Father.
The relationship between us and God is a relationship between us and our Father.
Jesus is our Savior, He’s our Lord, but He brings us to the Father so that we
can have close fellowship with God as our Father just like Jesus had close
fellowship with God as the Father. That’s not taking anything away from Jesus.
He truly wants us to go to the Father through His blood and in His name. So,
that’s how we pray. We pray to God, coming to our Father through the name and
through the blood of Jesus Christ.
I’ve been feeling that the Holy Spirit is moving me to pray for a friend of my husband’s and mine who has a third recurrence of cancer. I don’t know where to go from here. I don’t know what I should do.
First of all, we need to always be motivated by compassion to see healing
manifest in a person's life.
I want you to go to our website, changinglives.org, and there is a place under
both Confession Sheets and Life Solutions where you can click to access healing
Scriptures. What I would encourage you to do is take those healing Scriptures
and pray those verses over this person. Take those healing Scriptures and thank
God that the Word of God works. You then pray with authority. Where our
authority comes from is from the Word of God. Take those Scriptures, pray with
authority and it’s going to work. And don’t be shy and timid; be bold.
If you are praying for and believing in something, what are you supposed to do once God has actually answered your prayers?
We’re always going to be excited about receiving something from God. But the
point I want to make is that when Jesus performed a miracle in the Bible,
whether healing the sick or casting out demons, it wasn’t something that
surprised Him. He didn’t act as though He was suddenly surprised by the power He
had. It’s the confidence and faith that He had empowered Him in the first place.
If He did not have confidence and faith, He would not have been able to produce
the results and the miracles that He did throughout his life. According to Mark
11:23, “All things that you pray for, believe you have received them and they
shall be granted to you.”
So when we pray and ask God for something and believe we have received them,
that’s when we should be rejoicing and praising God. You need to be really
convinced that you have those things in your life – that’s when faith is really
at work and when things will really begin to be manifest in your life. When you
do see the things of God manifest in your life, you won’t be so excited because
you were confident all along that your faith in God would make them happen.
The Bible says that we should pray for our enemies. But what if you feel that they are possessed by the devil? I do not think that we should be praying for these people who love Satan. Please give me some direction.
Normally, if you have a true enemy that is truly against you, chances are
that that person is possessed by the devil. So, that’s the very person that the
Lord is telling us to pray for. God tells us to pray for our enemies, to bless
our enemies, to do good to our enemies and to love our enemies.
How do you love an enemy? How do you pray for an enemy when they’re demon
possessed? You pray that the devil would be bound. You pray that the devil would
stop influencing them. You pray according to 2 Corinthians chapter 4 because the
Bible says the god of this world has blinded their minds. Satan has blinded the
minds of the unbelieving.
So our prayer ought to be that Satan would no longer blind their minds; that
Satan would be bound; that he would be forbidden from blinding their minds; that
he would be forbidden from controlling them; that he would be forbidden from
directing them in their life and that their eyes would be opened. Pray that
their eyes would be opened and that their heart would be enlightened to Jesus
Christ. Pray that God would draw them closer to Him.
That’s how you pray for your enemies that are demon-possessed. Because even if
they’re not demon-possessed, you probably feel that they are. If they’re your
enemy, you probably feel that they are demon possessed. Whether they truly are
demon-possessed or not, pray that God would draw that person to Him and would
lead that person closer in their relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.