Why Pray if God Has Already Decided Everything?
How do we reconcile the fact that God has predetermined every event with the power of prayer to actually change things? According to John MacArthur, author of The Power of Praying, the answer lies in a correct understanding of God’s providential determination.
Determinism ≠ Fatalism
Most Calvinists believe in determinism, which holds that God has predetermined every single event (not to be confused with fatalism, which holds that our choices have no bearing on the future). What happens in the future is determined by what we do and pray in the present.
Prayer Changes the Future
God responds to prayer in both Scripture and our experience. Moses prayed for food and water for the Israelites; Hannah prayed for a child; Elijah prayed for drought and then rain. To say that we don’t need to pray because God has already decided everything is ridiculous.
God Ordains Our Prayers
God has ordained his interventions to be in response to faith-fueled petitions, so if your understanding of God’s providence leads you to pray less, you need to rethink your understanding.
Why do we pray when God already knows the outcome?
We acknowledge our reliance on the Lord and his grace and mercy when we pray. God doesn’t need your prayers because He knows exactly what you need before you even ask, but we desperately need Him in our lives, so our prayers are a proactive act of faith on our part.
What is the real purpose of praying?
Does God respond to our prayers? A popular belief is that if we have faith in God, pray diligently, and pray for a righteous cause (such as the health of another person), God will intervene in a supernatural way to grant our request.
Why pray if everything is predestined?
u201cIf God’s providence ordains all things that come to pass according to the immutable law of His purpose, then what need is there for prayer? We cannot change God’s decrees with our most fervent prayers.u201d
Does prayer change God?
We, like Abraham, frequently pray for things. u201cI, the Lord, do not change.u201d (Malachi 3:6) The idea of praying to change God’s will is arrogant, as it implies that we know better than God. In Gethsemane, Jesus set the example by praying for God’s will to be done, not His own.
Does prayer really matter?
Prayer, for example, can be a reliable source of self-soothing and self-comfort when one is in pain, grieving a loss, or dealing with traumatic events, according to research.
What are the 5 key purposes of prayer?
Thanksgiving – thanking God for his many blessings, such as health or children. petition – asking God for something, such as healing, courage, or wisdom. intercession – asking God to help others who are in need, such as the sick, poor, or those who are suffering in war.
How should we pray according to Jesus?
u201cDo not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in synagogues and on street corners to be seen by men… but when you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your father who is unseen,u201d Jesus advised.
What is power of prayer?
But when they came to Jesus, they didn’t say, “Teach us another prayer,” but rather, “Lord, teach us to pray,” as recorded in Matthew 6. The Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9u201313) is Christ’s response.
Is everything predestined by God?
One cannot change one’s destiny; everything is predetermined; and, while even god cannot help, putting one’s trust in him will make one feel less burdened.
Should we pray about everything?
‘Do not be concerned about anything; instead, pray about everything, telling God what you need and thanking him for everything he has done, and you will experience God’s peace, which is beyond our comprehension.’
What is the best prayer to God?
Loved God, I pray that you will comfort me in my suffering, strengthen the hands of my healers, and bless the methods used to cure me; give me such faith in the power of your grace that I may put my complete trust in you even when I am afraid; through our Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.
What can God not do?
This appealing tract explains that God is incapable of three things: lying, changing, and allowing sinners to enter heaven.
Do God answer all prayers?
The LORD’s arm is not too weak to save you, nor is his ear too deaf to hear you call; it is your sins that have cut you off from God; it is because of your sins that he has turned away and will not listen any longer.u201d