Outsiders Beg; Kings Command

“…It is taught (from Characteristics) that a one-time prayer is enough, and all other prayers after should be in thanksgiving. I found this useful when I first followed the WOF, because Reformed prayer is just begging in unbelief...”

Read Vincent Cheung, The Extreme Faith Teacher.

This is the standard of faith and the immediate effects that come from a single prayer of faith. This is the standard Jesus held His disciples to. This is the same standard He will hold us to. This is the standard of faith and its effects we will be judged against. There is only one definition for what faith and its effects look like, and that glory belongs to scripture alone. This standard is not just a suggestion, it is a command. If you love God you will obey it, if you hate God you will disobey it. This is not rocket science.

I understand the context of a person coming from a teaching of unbelief and then hearing the many voices of the charismatics and Word of Faith. They are broadly correct on the topic of faith, but have many wrong points that come from Arminianism and self-imposed narrow applications that do not belong to Scripture (such as the 5 or 9 fold gifts of the Spirit ministry). With that said, this idea of faith is simple enough for a child to grasp, and so, one ought to be ashamed theologians can confuse them.

The reformed prayer is a beggar’s prayer, and this is why they see no results. Begging is for those who are outsiders of God’s contract. Insiders relate to God differently. I am glad you see this. Faith is “confidence” or “absolute certainty” God will do what He promised. One man asked Jesus, “if you can,” and Jesus was offended and said, “if I can?” Jesus never commanded us to “beg for the things we want.” Jesus commanded us to speak His Name in faith and make demons scream and mountains fly. The difference is huge. We are children of God. Children do not beg as if they are outsiders sitting abandoned on the road. Some theologians are indeed outsiders to God’s Contract and so all they can do is beg, and then try to deceive God’s children in following their outsider behavior. Yet we are indeed children of God. We sit at His table as co-heirs with Christ. Children ask the Father for a fish and they get a fish. They ask for the Spirit of God (can anyone put a value on the Spirit of God?), and the Father will absolutely give this to His sons and daughters. He will withhold nothing good from you. And “good” is defined by Jesus, as asking what you want and God giving this to you. The bible is the only definition of reality. Only God defines good and evil. God defines good as asking whatever you want and God giving it to you. This is good, because God thinks so.

In fact, we reign as kings in this life through the credited righteousness of Jesus and His unmerited favor (Romans 5:17-21). A king who begs is not a king. A king who does not speak is not a king. A king who does not decree is not a king. A king decrees and it happens. Royalty commands, and they are obeyed. “YOU will say… [then] nothing will be impossible to YOU, (Matthew 17:20).” “If YOU have faith … it will obey YOU, (Luke 17:6). When gods speak, reality obeys THEM.

Of course, it is God power at work in us, and not own power, but because the Bible rejects pantheism, when WE speak it is us, NOT God. Thus, reality will obey us when we speak in faith.

The basic idea is simple: read the promises, meditate on the promises, decree (in Jesus Name) the promises over yourself and then thank God for giving you the things you prayed/proclaimed. Some charismatic fools can get narrowly hung up on saying, “once you do this only keep thanking God for the results and do not pray the prayer again.” This comes from an overzealous fear of words. As Numbers 13-14 shows, you need to be careful with your words. (see Vincent Cheung, The Edge of Glory). If you speak unbelief, then God will give the evil you spoke; yet, if you speak faith, God will give the good you spoke. However, the bible says more about this. Consider David in Psalm 31:22 spoke a word of unbelief, but God helped Him.  Obviously, David repented and re-asked for help and God helped him. Peter denied Jesus 3 times, but then re-affirmed his devotion and God received him back. This is the big idea, unbelief is strong, but a word of faith is stronger. If you made a mistake, turn around and speak the word of faith again, and God will help you. The Word and Spirit are stronger. A Confession of Faith is much stronger. Do not fear.

Also, Jesus directly commands that we pray and never give up. Thus, to say you cannot repeat your prayer, is a direct rebuttal of Jesus Himself. Jesus had to pray for a blind man twice. A person with “great faith” and who as developed a mature faith will indeed speak short one time prayers or confessions and will often see it happen immediately. We are all to strive for this level of power and faith. We will all give an account for how well we sought to obey Jesus in acquiring this standard of faith. Here is the big idea, if we had perfect faith, then we would only need one prayer for all things, but even then there might be a few exceptions, like Jesus praying for the blind man. But since no one has perfect faith, we are commanded to pray in a group (when two or three are gather..) we are commanded to have our elders come and pray with us, and we are given the gift of faith to help compensate for our imperfect faith.  God loves us so much that He has given us many tools to help us get the things we ask for. He wants to give you many good things. He is more than willing and able.

Thus, many charismatic teachers teach faith in practical steps (although flawed), to help struggling saints develop faith. Thus, we have two categories. One is the standard of faith as taught by Jesus, and the Second are pastors giving practical steps in how to get to that standard. Do not confuse the two. Some of these steps are not commandments, but can be helpful tools, and yet others are just wrong.

Back to our basic teaching, “read the promises, meditate on the promises, confess/pray the promises and (if you need to wait), then thank God for granting your request. This is great teaching. However, some say only repeat the last one, but as shown above, this is not necessarily so. Sometimes it is better to repeat the whole process. Maybe your mind is not renewed enough, and you need to establish the promises in your mind more. Thus, the practical application of this does depends on person to person, but the overall biblical applicable is the same for all.

Another reason why the advice to never repeat your prayer, but only give thanks, is bad, is because it puts the focus man and brings up fear. It puts the focus on you and then fear comes from this. Giving thanks for the prayed outcome is great, but if your mind is not renewed as it ought to be, then just giving thanks will not work (although, God still might grant it out of sheer kindness). You do need a honest self-evaluation, but remember that the focus of faith is God, His Word, His faithfulness and His love toward you. If you are focused on your self-evaluation and feelings, then by definition you are not in faith any more. Often, when developing faith and even keeping it, you need to re-read the promises, re-meditate and then on this foundation pray, and faith will naturally arise by God’s power.

Because Jesus wants you to have the things you pray for, He made it a command to pray and never give up. Stop and think about that for a moment. He wants you to have your request so much, He commanded that you never give up. He promises God will absolutely give you what you ask for. This is how much He loves you. He wants you to have the things you pray for, more than you do. Thus, it is not God you need to convince to give you what you ask; rather, it is your stubborn mind and unbelief, that needs convincing. God has already convinced Himself to give you whatever you ask for in faith. Thus, if there is a lack of results, it is not on God’s part, but you. So, in the confidence of God’s love for you re-read the promise, re-meditate and re-confess the promises of God.  

The important thing to do when praying is to not hedge your prayer in uncertainty and unbelief. Leave no room for your prayer to not be answered, because God has already convinced Himself to give you what you ask. This is essentially what a Word of Faith declaration is. It is a short-hand prayer that knows the outcome is certain. Thus faith speaks this way, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, standup and walk.” No fear, no hedging. Just absolute confidence in God doing what He said He would do. And if you have read the gospels, Jesus loved this kind of faith. In fact, Jesus publicly boasted about such people before God and men. And if you have this kind of faith, Jesus will boast and exalt you before God and men. Imagine, the God of Gods and the King of Kings exalting you. Surely there is nothing greater in all reality.