| prayer makes a difference|
This Scripture is encouraging about God answering prayers.
"In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, "This is what the Lord says, 'Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover."
Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, 'Remember, O Lord, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes." And Hezekiah wept bitterly.
Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah: "Go and tell Hezekiah, "This is what the Lord, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will add fifteen years to your life." Isaiah 38:1-5.
It seems from this Old Testament example that God changed His mind after hearing the prayers of a righteous, god-fearing man, another example is when God wanted to kill multitudes (thousands or more) of Israelites because of the golden calf until Moses interceded on their behalf. Praise God for His mercy and grace and His willingness to hear our prayers and requests and grants them when He wills.
| 2004/5/25 17:32||Profile|
| Re: prayer makes a difference|
I agree with your statement that prayer makes a difference but I'm not sure that this is the best example.
Look at 2 Kings 20:12-20, which is right after this prayer was answered. Here's verses 14-19: 14Then Isaiah the prophet went to King Hezekiah and asked him, "What did those men want? Where were they from?"
Hezekiah replied, "They came from the distant land of Babylon."
15"What did they see in your palace?" Isaiah asked.
"They saw everything," Hezekiah replied. "I showed them everything I own--all my treasures."
16Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, "Listen to this message from the LORD: 17The time is coming when everything you have--all the treasures stored up by your ancestors--will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD. 18Some of your own descendants will be taken away into exile. They will become eunuchs who will serve in the palace of Babylon's king."
19Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, "This message you have given me from the LORD is good." But the king was thinking, [b]"At least there will be peace and security during my lifetime."[/b]
Can you see what happened to Hezekiah's heart (i.e. the compromise in verse 15 and the selfishness in verse 19)? All of our days are numbered and given this sad story, I'm not asking for any more than what the good Lord wants to give to me.
| 2004/5/25 20:43||Profile|
| Re: prayer makes a difference|
It's a good example of prayer making a difference (though the efficacy of prayer in general is a more complicated matter), but I think it's more a lesson in "be careful what you wish for." The footnotes in the Amplified Bible illuminated this for me:
(2 Kings 20:6) : Good King Hezekiah's prayer life holds a mighty challenge and a clear and terrible warning for every believer. In his nation's darkest hour (18:13-17), he prayed (19:15), and God performed a miracle, one He had foretold (19:20, 32-37). It is a wonderful thing to have such power as that with God! But in this chapter (20) and the next, that power has become a terrible thing; for Hezekiah had put himself on God's "ways and means committee," as chairman in fact. God virtually said, "Your time has come to die" (20:1). But Hezekiah's words and tears implied, "No! I want to live and have sons who will do mighty things, and I myself have my best years ahead of me!" Read this chapter and the next, and note at least ten terrible things (see also footnote on II Kings 20:17) that resulted which only God could foresee and that only Hezekiah's death executed at the time God intended it would have prevented. But Hezekiah interfered. The only safe prayer policy is "God's will; nothing more; nothing less; nothing else; at any cost" (see Luke 22:42, Acts 21:14). It pays triumphantly! Martin Luther is quoted as saying, "Blessed is he who submits to the will of God; he can never be unhappy. Men may deal with him as they will...; he is without care; he knows that 'all things work together for good' for him" (Rom. 8:28) (Martin Luther, cited by J.P. Lange, A Commentary).
(2 Kings 20:17) This is the first of ten tragic results of Hezekiah's self-willed prayer, which God's plan for Hezekiah's death would have prevented (see the footnote on 20:6). For a listing of these results see II Kings 20:18; 21:1, 3, 4, 6, 9, 14, 16, 20.
| 2004/5/25 23:40||Profile|
Thank you for the insights, those are interesting notes.
God's will be done is the best prayer!!! You're right about that.
| 2004/5/26 0:19||Profile|