Prayer and Fasting

Matthew 17:21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.

Jesus instruction to the disciples is the result of their lack of power in prayer concerning the son of a man who needed to be delivered. The man brought his son to Jesus because the disciples were unable to cure his problem. Later the disciples asked Jesus, "Why could we not cast him out?" 

Jesus teaching to his disciples is coupled with another verse that is a challenge to us who believe. Matthew 17:20 "And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you."  Successful prayer is the result Jesus says of a lack of unbelief and the presence of faith. As believers we want our prayers to reap results but so often we like the disciples fail in our efforts. We ask ourselves why do we not have success in praying or those who come to us for help? I like many of you know the frustration of failure in prayer.

As I have been contemplating that this afternoon, I think that it has to do with the closeness of our relationship with God. The purpose of prayer and fasting is not so we can perform miraculous acts. The acts of prayer and fasting are to draw us closer to God so that we are ready to confront the issues we face in prayer. Jesus says it does not take a great deal of faith(only mustard seed size) but we must have confidence in God and His willingness to answer when we pray. That confidence  to remove mountains and cast out demons or heal diseases, only come as we are so close to God that unbelief is cast out. Jesus says it only comes by Prayer and Fasting!

Keep Looking Up!

Dan

 

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