Sunday, September 17, 2017

Prayer Warrior: Praying Your Way To Victory - Session 8 - Become Skilled With Your Spiritual Weapons



The Church of Divine Guidance Sunday Morning Adult Bible Study Group is going through
Prayer Warrior The Power Of Praying Your Way To Victory by Stormie Omartian.  For a copy of the book, click or touch this LINK or the image, of the book at the end of the notes.

No one can sit on the sidelines today when it comes to spiritual matters. A war is going on between good and evil, and every believer is involved. For every Christian who wants a meaningful prayer life that is more than just asking for blessings.  Bestselling author Stormie Omartian shows how to pray with strength and purpose―prayers resulting in great victory, not only personally but also in advancing God's kingdom and glory.



These are my notes for the study. The audio of the study is at the end of the notes.


When we last met our session title was  “Put On Your Protective Armor Every Morning”.  In that session we discussed that protective armor the armor of God as described by Paul in Ephesians 6:11-17


Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.  In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.  Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Ephesians 6:11‭-‬17 NLT

The belt of truth protects our spiritual core. That means we must tightly surround ourselves with truth and not allow for anything other than the truth to enter into our thinking or situation. It means asking God to keep us undeceived so that we never allow deception to take root. Knowing the truth liberates us from all possibility of deception and illuminates any darkness in our life.

The breastplate of righteousness protects us from being accused of being unworthy because of past sin.   

Our feet are protected and equipped so that we can not only stand firm in the good news of the gospel but so that we can proclaim that gospel to others.   The word “preparation” means that the gospel of peace has already been accomplished.  Jesus already prepared that for us.  Having peace with God and peace in God is an unshakeable foundation from which we can defend ourselves and stay standing strong.

The shield of faith protects all the rest of the armor.  The enemy shoots spiritual arrows and darts at us designed to pierce our heart with discouragement and make us fearful, anxious, uncertain, or incapacitated.

The helmet of salvation spiritual protects our head  or our minds.  It protects us from the lies of the enemy.   The enemy wants to keep you from understanding—and living in—all that salvation means for you. He wants you convinced that you are worthless, rejected, weak, bad, unimportant, hopeless, and unlovable. Or if he can’t get you to think that way, he tempts you to go in the opposite direction and be full of pride. Either way, you fall.

There is only one piece of that armor that is in addition to being protection, is also offensive in nature.  We can  use this piece of armor as a weapon use to attack our enemy.  That weapon is the sword of the spirit with is the Word of God.  

A good example of this is our Lord himself.  When Jesus was baptized and led into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit, Satan attacked Him again. Jesus’ weapon against him was God’s Word—which is the “sword of the Spirit.”  No spiritual battle can be fought and won without our greatest weapon—the Word of God.  

The word is a defensive as well as offensive weapon. As prayer warriors, we need both.  speak the word, pray the Word, live the Word, and let it live in you.

Today we are going to talk about becoming skilled in the use of our spiritual weapons.  We know that the Word is a weapon but Stormie identifies some others, worship, grace, fasting with prayer, faith as a weapon, and prayer.


The Sword of the Spirit

Perhaps the finest example of effectively wielding the Sword of the Spirit, is that of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible is the most powerful offensive weapon that leads to victory over temptation and evil. In Matthew chapter 4 Jesus quotes the Bible three times to the devil... and the devil leaves Him!

Matthew 4:1-11 (NLT)1  Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil.2  For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry.
3  During that time the devil came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.”4  But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”5  Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple,6  and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’”7  Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.’”8  Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him the kingdoms of the world and all their glory.9  “I will give it all to you,” he said, “if you will kneel down and worship me.”10  “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the LORD your God and serve only him.’”11  Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.  

To be proficient in the use of this weapon we must practice its use.   We need to know it as well as a soldier know his or her weapon.  We’ve seen in the movies how a soldier learns to assemble and disassemble their gun almost as like doing it with their eyes closed.  That’s why they train and train so the using their weapon become second nature.  They don’t even have to think about it they just use it.  That’s the way we should be in the use of our weapon, the sword of the Spirit.

One of the things that happens with the repetition of something is that you will in many cases memorize it.  Our affirmation is an example as are the scriptures that Pastor has us repeat every Sunday.  Sooner or later you know them.  What’s important though is not only to know them but when to use them.  One way to learn how or when to use them is to read them in the context there were written in the Bible.  Stormie suggests writing some scriptures and putting them in places where you will see them a lot.  In the past I’ve taken some those scriptures that were applicable to a situation that I was dealing with and I would affirm that scripture everyday,  Once that situation was past I stopped affirming them everyday but it a similar situation happens what happens is those scriptures will again come to mind.  

When you read God’s Word and say it often enough, it will become just like a soldier’s weapon. If you did that with one verse a week or even a month, you would have a lot more of the Word etched on your mind and heart than most people will in a lifetime. You will be amazed at the strength and security you feel when you are armed properly.

Here's a great point.  The Word of God is powerful in and of itself to transform lives and situations, but people who have no faith in God or His Word cannot direct it in prayer and see it penetrate situations with impact. You can’t just say, “Here’s a verse I am throwing out there. I don’t know what it means and I don’t really believe it, but it’s worth a try.” There is no power there. If Jesus Himself—the Son of God—could not do miracles in the presence of unbelief, how much less can we do them in the presence of our own unbelief?
     
Every time you read God’s Word, it should inspire prayer either for yourself, someone else, or some situation you know about. When you’re praying, include the Word in your prayers. God’s Word is never ineffective. He says of His Word,

“As rain comes down,mand the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:10-11).

But use this weapon on the enemy not your fellow warriors. We must always remember who our real enemy is. It is always used most effectively against the enemy. With people, we speak God’s Word to encourage, uplift, direct, free, advise, inform, strengthen, and lovingly affirm them.

Worship Is a Powerful Weapon Against the Enemy

After we put on our protective armor—truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith,
salvation, and the sword of the Spirit—there are other powerful weapons God has given us against the enemy that we must become skilled with as well. One extremely powerful weapon is praise and worship.
     
The enemy despises our worship and praise to God so much that he cannot even be in the presence of anyone who is actively doing that. So whenever you want the enemy to flee, worship God. It is one of our greatest weapons in the war against him. And it is our correct response to God for all He has done and is doing in our lives.

The enemy hates your worship of God because his own greatest objective is to get you to worship him instead.

Last week my sermon was “How Do We Worship In Spirit And In Truth”.

Let’s first look at a definition for worship; it’s “the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity”.  

We praise God for what He’s done. We worship Him for who He is. Worship is our response to God’s greatness.  It’s us, the created, responding to Him, the Creator. It’s our spirits being energized in His presence.  

Eugene Patterson the creator of “The Message” Bible translation says that worship is “A tribute to God when He comes.”

We worship when we come into God’s presence. God’s presence makes us who we are. His presence sets us apart from others.

We don’t have to be in a church or any specific place to feel God’s presence and worship Him.  Psalm 139 says that God's presence can be wherever are.

O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word on my tongue, But behold, O Lord , You know it altogether. You have hedged me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it. Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, Even there Your hand shall lead me, And Your right hand shall hold me.
Psalms 139:1-10 NKJV

We know that God isn’t confined to a church building or only available at certain times of day. So we don’t have to wait until we come to church or a certain time of day to worship Him.  We don’t even have to wait until we feel spiritual.

Jesus said that the time had come when it wasn’t where you worshiped but how you worshiped.

But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way.  For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”
John 4:23-24 NLT

So the question is just how do we worship God in spirit and in truth?

To worship God in spirit and in truth is to declare that God is worthy of our reverence. We do this in spirit through our heart, the seat of our emotions, based on the truth of who He is, the truth of who we are, the truth of what God does and has done for us, and the truth of what is going on in our lives.

Worshiping God isn’t just something you do, it’s the way you live.

To worship God in spirit and in truth is to declare that God is worthy of our reverence. We do this in spirit through our heart, the seat of our emotions, based on the truth of who He is, the truth of who we are, the truth of what God does and has done for us, and the truth of what is going on in our lives. We do it with a heart inclined toward God and in submission to Him. We worship God when our attitudes, actions, and words declare that He is worthy of our praise.

There is nothing more powerful than worship of God. It can shake things up in the spirit realm and in our lives like nothing else can. It causes chains to fall off of people.

If prayer in its simplest form is communicating with God, then praise and worship is the purest
form of prayer.

God’s Grace Is a Weapon Against the Enemy

Grace is the unmerited favor of God.  I believe that “Grace is the most important concept in the Bible, Christianity, and the world. It is most clearly expressed in the promises of God revealed in Scripture and embodied in Jesus Christ himself.”

We did a Bible Study on grace back in 2014.  

The Greek word that’s used most in the New Testament and translated grace is charis (pronounced cars) a) objective - that which bestows or occasions pleasure, delight, or causes favorable regard.


Romans 1:5 (HCSB) 5  We have received grace and apostleship through Him to bring about the obedience of faith among all the nations, on behalf of His name,

Romans 3:24 (HCSB)24  They are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

Romans 5:2 (HCSB)2  We have also obtained access through Him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Romans 12:6 (HCSB)6  According to the grace given to us, we have different gifts: If prophecy, use it according to the standard of one’s faith;

Common grace
The kindness or favor God gives to all mankind, believer or not.
Matthew 5:44-45 (NKJV)44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Saving grace
The provision of salvation through Jesus
Romans 5:15-17 (NLT)15  But there is a great difference between Adam’s sin and God’s gracious gift. For the sin of this one man, Adam, brought death to many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of forgiveness to many through this other man, Jesus Christ.16  And the result of God’s gracious gift is very different from the result of that one man’s sin. For Adam’s sin led to condemnation, but God’s free gift leads to our being made right with God, even though we are guilty of many sins.17  For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ.
 
Securing Grace
The favor of God by which the Christian's salvation is kept secure in spite of sin.
John 10:27-29 (NKJV)27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand.
Sustaining grace
Grace given at special times of need, especially during adversity or suffering.
2 Corinthians 12:9 (NKJV) And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Sanctifying Grace
Sanctifying grace works within the true believer causing them to grow and mature and progress becoming more Christ-like.
Romans 8:28 (NKJV) And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Serving Grace
The Spiritual Gifts that believers have been given by the Holy Spirit are serving grace. The Greek word translated grace,  charis is the root of the word charisma which is the word Paul used for spiritual gifts.
Ephesians 4:7 (NKJV) But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift.

Empowering Grace

God not only saves us by grace, but He also gives us His Holy Spirit, whose power is at work in us by God’s grace as well.  Grace also means  the operations of God’s power.   

When we did our study on the Holy Spirit last year we talked about how the Holy Spirit empowered people in the Bible.  

Exodus 35:30-36:1 (NKJV)30  And Moses said to the children of Israel, "See, the LORD has called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah;31  and He has filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom and understanding, in knowledge and all manner of workmanship,32  to design artistic works, to work in gold and silver and bronze,33  in cutting jewels for setting, in carving wood, and to work in all manner of artistic workmanship.34  And He has put in his heart the ability to teach, in him and Aholiab the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan.35  He has filled them with skill to do all manner of work of the engraver and the designer and the tapestry maker, in blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine linen, and of the weaver--those who do every work and those who design artistic works. 36: 1  "And Bezalel and Aholiab, and every gifted artisan in whom the LORD has put wisdom and understanding, to know how to do all manner of work for the service of the sanctuary, shall do according to all that the LORD has commanded."

1 Chronicles 28:11-12 (NKJV)11  Then David gave his son Solomon the plans for the vestibule, its houses, its treasuries, its upper chambers, its inner chambers, and the place of the mercy seat;12  and the plans for all that he had by the Spirit, of the courts of the house of the LORD, of all the chambers all around, of the treasuries of the house of God, and of the treasuries for the dedicated things;

Moses and the 70 Elders who help him:

17 “I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take of the Spirit that is on you and put the Spirit on them. They will help you carry the burden of the people so that you will not have to carry it alone.” … 25 Then the Lord came down in the cloud and spoke with him, and he took of the Spirit that was on him and put the Spirit on the seventy elders. When the Spirit rested on them, they prophesied, but they did not do so again. 26 However, two men, whose names were Eldad and Medad, had remained in the camp. They were listed among the elders, but did not go out to the Tent. Yet the Spirit also rested on them, and they prophesied in the camp. 29 But Moses replied, “Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!” (Numbers 11:17, 25-29).
13 So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came upon David in power. Samuel then went to Ramah. 14 Now the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him (1 Samuel 16:13-14).
Stormie points out what Zechariah said to Zerubbabel after the exile in Babylon, in the rebuilding of the temple, as Empowering Grace  

Zechariah 4:6-7 (ASV)6  Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of Jehovah unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith Jehovah of hosts.7  Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain; and he shall bring forth the top stone with shoutings of Grace, grace, unto it.

If we are filled with the Holy Spirit empower us too.  

Ephesians 5:18 - And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;


Then the spiritual gifts of the Spirit:

Romans 12:6-8 (NKJV) 6  Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7  or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8  he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

1 Corinthians 12:4-11 (NKJV) 4  There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5  There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord.
6  And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. 7  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8  for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9  to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10  to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11  But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

Ephesians 4:11-12 (NKJV) 11  And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,12  for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,


She says that we should speak to our obstacles.  Speaking the Word of God in faith.  This is not the same as the Word of Faith people who are actually much like the people who believe in the “Secret”  believing that what you say will happen.   What she says is very important and what I always say when we are speaking the word of God and expecting that what we say will happen.  Stormie says;

When we are certain what God’s will is, we can speak “grace” to the seemingly insurmountable enemy opposition. And the enemy will have no power against it, because he can’t tell us we don’t deserve God’s grace. We already know that. He cannot tell us that we are not powerful enough to make it happen on our own. We already know that too. All we need to know is that God is powerful and full of grace, and He will make it happen.  Remember that God said to Zerubbabel That the rebuilding of the temple would not be done by human strength, but by His Holy Spirit. It is the same for the mountain you are facing.  The enemy can never stand against what God desires to do by His grace.

Fasting with Prayer Is a Weapon Against the Enemy

In the Bible, people fasted and prayed before they made important decisions.

Esther 4:15-16 (NKJV)15  Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai:16  "Go, gather all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me; neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will fast likewise. And so I will go to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish!"

2 Chronicles 20:1-3 (NKJV)1  It happened after this that the people of Moab with the people of Ammon, and others with them besides the Ammonites, came to battle against Jehoshaphat.
2  Then some came and told Jehoshaphat, saying, "A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, from Syria; and they are in Hazazon Tamar" (which is En Gedi).3  And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.  

Jonah 3:5-6 (NKJV)5  So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them.6  Then word came to the king of Nineveh; and he arose from his throne and laid aside his robe, covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes.

1 Corinthians 7:5 (NKJV)5  Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

Because spiritual warfare is continuous, we must pray continually.  That must be our priority as well. But our praying can increase in power.  Fasting and prayer is a powerful weapon against the enemy. So when you need a breakthrough in any area of your life, fast and pray and see what God does in response. Some things will not happen without it.

Mark 9:24-29 (NKJV)24  Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!"25  When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, "Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!"26  Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, "He is dead."27  But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.28  And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, "Why could we not cast it out?"29  So He said to them, "This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting."

Scripture does not command Christians to fast. At the same time, the Bible presents fasting as something that is good, profitable, and beneficial. The book of Acts records believers fasting before they made important decisions (

Acts 13:1-3 (NKJV)1  Now in the church that was at Antioch there were certain prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.2  As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, "Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them."
3  Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away.

Acts 14:21-23 (NKJV)21  And when they had preached the gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch,22  strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, "We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God."23  So when they had appointed elders in every church, and prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed.

Fasting and prayer are often linked together

Luke 2:36-37 (NKJV)36  Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity;37  and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.  

The purpose of fasting should be to take your eyes off the things of this world to focus completely on God. Fasting is a way to demonstrate to God, and to ourselves, that we are serious about our relationship with Him. Fasting helps us gain a new perspective and a renewed reliance upon God.

By taking our eyes off the things of this world, we can more successfully turn our attention to Christ. Fasting is not a way to get God to do what we want. Fasting changes us, not God. Fasting is not a way to appear more spiritual than others. Fasting is to be done in a spirit of humility and a joyful attitude.

Matthew 6:16-18 (NKJV)16  "Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.17  But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face,
18  so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.


Faith Is Not Only a Shield; It Is a Weapon

We cannot do anything without faith—especially please God. “Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Having faith in God is the opposite of trusting in ourselves. Faith means being convinced that God will do as He promised, so we stop striving to do everything on our own.

Our strong faith not only serves as our protective shield, but it is also one of our powerful weapons against the enemy.   We must have faith that God hears and will answer our prayers.

Mark 11:22-23

Mark 11:22-23 (NKJV)22  So Jesus answered and said to them, "Have faith in God.
23  For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.

Does not mean we tell God what to do. The Greek word  translated “ask”, is aiteo. Aiteo does mean to demand or to insist,  but it doesn’t give the license to be arrogant or rude to God. Aiteo is used, in the New Testament,  to portray a person addressing a superior. The person may insist or demand that a certain need be met, but he approaches and speaks to his superior with respect and honor.



We don’t dictate the way or timing of how God answers our prayers. We don’t have faith in our faith so that we think we control things with our faith. We are not going to force God to do anything that is not His will.

Jesus tells us to pray and ask authoritatively and in faith.  He tells us to come boldly when we ask but if we take His comments in context with everything that He says we will realize that asking authoritatively and boldly is done in faith not in a demanding manner as if we were a superior or an equal with the authority to force the response we want.  

Asking In God’s Will Is Not A Demand
I agree that if we ask for things within God’s will for us that He will give those things to us.  Maybe not the way we want them or when we want them but He will give us those things we ask because we will be so in tune with His will that our will and His will be the same. But when we ask asking amiss, which means asking something inappropriate or something wrong, what we want is for our own benefit and is not grounded in love for God or for others.  When we don’t get the answers that we want we get frustrated.   The passion that comes from frustration can sometimes cause our prayers to become demands.  
James 4:2-3 (NKJV)2  You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask.3  You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.
The key is to ask according to God’s will.

Here’s what Stormie says, and I agree

“Something happens every time we pray, but we cannot put limits on what we think God can or will do, because the answer is up to Him.”  “Ask God for the strength to bear up under difficult circumstances with hope in your heart and faith that does not waiver, even in the midst of a storm. The Bible says,

“Let him ask in faith, without doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord” (James 1:6-7).

When you live by faith, you persevere through any opposition.

Steadfast faith means we believe 100 percent in God and His Word whether we see every prayer answered the way we want or not. Whether you see everything you ask for come to pass should not be the determining factor in the strength of your faith or your attitude toward God. Your steadfast walk of faith has to do simply with your believing God. Every day proclaim in your heart that Jesus is Lord of your life and you have absolute faith in Him. Then, no matter what is happening in and around you, your faith becomes a weapon against the enemy.
     
The Bible says,

“The just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him” (Hebrews 10:38).

It says we should stand strong in faith, because “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1).

As a prayer warrior, you and I must listen to and obey our Commander, and not judge His decisions—His answers to our prayers.  Trusting God means we obey Him without question. That is strong faith. And it is not only a shield, but also a weapon that destroys the world of the enemy.

Prayer Is Always a Powerful Weapon Against the Enemy

While prayer is the battle itself, it is also a weapon. In prayer we tell God what we want Him to do. It’s not that He is unaware of the problem or doesn’t know what's going on. He knows what is going to happen before it happens. Before we see the need, He already knows the answer.

“It shall come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear” (Isaiah 65:24).
     
God has set it up that we pray and He answers. He doesn’t make us robots. He doesn’t impose His will on us. He waits for us to choose His will over our own. The reason He does this is so we will walk with Him in an ever-deepening relationship.

As we’ve said in other studies this year our example for praying is Jesus.  

Jesus prayed first thing in the morning.

“In the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed” (Mark 1:35).
     
Jesus prayed at night.

“He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God” (Luke 6:12).
     
Jesus prayed alone.

“When He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there” (Matthew 14:23).
     
Jesus prayed without ceasing.

“Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass,mand to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:36).
     
Jesus could do nothing without praying.

“The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner” (John 5:19).
     
We need to pray as Jesus did—day and night, without ceasing, in private communion with God.
     
When you bring your concerns and needs to the Lord and ask Him to meet those needs, that is called petitionary praying. When you petition God for something, don’t stop praying. Bring it to Him again and again if you need to until you have peace in your heart that you have truly left it in His hands. After each prayer, thank Him that He has heard your prayers and that He  in His way and in His time.
     
God is very specific about what He wants from us. You must be specific too. As you pray, tell God that above all you want His will to be done. Because if you are praying for something that is not His will, you want to know it and be led by His Spirit to pray the right thing. Do not sit in judgment on how well you think you prayed. That is not your job. Your work is to pray. It is God’s work to answer the way He wants to. And definitely do not sit in judgment on how God has answered unless you are fond of lightning. You simply pray and leave the outcome in God’s hands to answer in His way and time. Then every time you pray, your prayers will become a weapon against the enemy and his plans for your life.

Bible Study Audio





Prayer Warrior: Praying Your Way To Victory - Session 8 - Become Skilled With Your Spiritual Weapons

The Church of Divine Guidance Sunday Morning Adult Bible Study Group is going through Prayer Warrior The Power Of Praying Your Way To ...