by Steve Preston
Have you ever thought about the reasons you pray? If you pray at all, you probably have at the top of your list asking forgiveness of sins.
Still there are many other reasons to pray, such as thanking God for what he has done, asking him for strength and wisdom to live right in this world, and asking healing for those who are sick physically or spiritually.
There are as many reasons to pray as there are people in the world.
One thing for sure, we don’t pray enough. That is because there are times during each day that we could use help in making a decision and we don’t turn to God for help.
All throughout the Bible, there are many instances of people asking God for guidance in decisions. Sometimes, these people are asking as the situation arises.
Let us now then turn to the scriptures and see what kinds of decisions were made with God’s help.
WHO GOES FIRST?
As the children of Israel moved through the land of Canaan, many occasions arose to fight against the inhabitants of the land.
After Joshua died, the Israelites came to the land where the Canaanites lived, and so they asked God, “Who shall go up first for us against the Canaanites, to fight against them?” (Judges 1:1 NASB).
The children of Israel knew that God had a particular way in which he wanted things done. In every battle, God had told them how they were to fight. This time would be no exception. For in verse 2 God gives his answer: “Judah shall go up; behold, I have given the land into his hand.”
In an earlier time, the children of Israel needed help in settling disputes. As yet God has only made known his laws through Moses, and so to Moses they went.
In Exodus 18:15,16, Moses responds to the question of why he stands before the people all day long. He states that it’s because “the people come to me to inquire of God. When they have a dispute, it comes to me, and I judge between a man and his neighbor and make known the statutes of God and His laws.”
This time, at least, the Israelites wanted to do the right thing according to the will of God. But without personally knowing God’s laws, they needed someone to tell them what his will was on a particular matter.
Today it is no different. God’s children still need him to say what is right and wrong. Christians do not always agree on everything, but all would certainly want the will of the Lord to prevail. Therefore in any dispute, the word of God must be studied to find out what the will of God is.
TO STRENGTHEN ONE’S POSITION
Times are when people ask God for something or an answer to a question simply in hopes of strengthening their own position.
Such was the case with the Pharisee in Mark 14:60. Our Lord was on trial, and he was asked if he was indeed the Christ, the Son of God.
The question was not asked to confirm the Pharisees’ belief in God but that they might have more evidence to secure a guilty verdict. All know that Jesus answered in the affirmative: “I am.” The truth would ultimately be the cause of death of Jesus.
Without realizing who he was talking to, the Pharisee inquired of God as to his divinity. How foolish this man was!
To our all-knowing God, no one will have an excuse for not knowing who Jesus is. Second Thessalonians 1:8 says that God will take vengeance on “those who do not know God and [on] those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.”
Inquiring of God is a privilege that only the Christian enjoys. To those who seek the will of God, prayers will always be answered (Matthew 7:7; Luke 11:9). For the many who seek their own glory, God will answer them, too, on the day of judgment.
Make sure God’s counsel is sought after, all the day long. God is always listening and ready to answer.
Steve writes BibleTalk, short messages from God’s word, the Bible. You can subscribe by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
by Steve Preston