When Ye Pray Believe, Mk 11:23-24

When Ye Pray Believe

In Mk 11:24, Jesus told his disciples, “when ye pray believe”.  In Mk 11:22 he said, “Have faith in God”.  So, we are to pray in faith, believing.  Yet, there are three things that can prevail against your faith and weaken it.  We’re going to talk about those this evening.

Pray, don’t doubt.  In Mk 11:23, Jesus said, “and shall not doubt in his heart”.  What you see, listen to, and read about can diminish your faith when you’re praying.  When Peter saw the wind boisterous in Matt 14:31, he doubted and began to sink, Matt 14:30.

We just need to pray in the Holy Ghost, Jude 20, and quit checking on the outcome of our prayer.  We must quit checking up on God to see whether he’s coming through on our prayer request.  If what we see, read about, or hear about is not a quick satisfactory response to our prayer, we’re going to doubt God’ll answer.  It’s hard to follow the command, “when ye pray believe” if what you’re seeing is causing you to doubt.

Pray, don’t be discouraged.  Lk 11:5-10.  The neighbor received the loaves he was requesting because of his importunity.  He never quit asking.  To be importunate is to be overly persistent in request.  He didn’t give up even though he was initially turned down.

The companion passage in Lk 18:1-5 teaches us to pray and not to faint.  The judge avenged the widow because of her “continual coming”.  Don’t be discouraged if God is taking longer to answer your request than you think he should.  It’s hard to follow the command, “when ye pray believe” if you are getting discouraged.

Pray, don’t dread.  Gen 32:9-11.  Jacob prayed earnestly to God when he heard Esau was coming to meet him, because, as he said, “I fear him”.  Fear will prevail over faith.  And Jacob’s fear certainly compelled him to make many unnecessary preparations before Esau’s arrival, Gen 32:13-23.  Later that night, when Jacob wrestled with the Lord, he prevailed in prayer, Hos 12:3-6.

And we should prevail in prayer rather than in preparations motivated by our fears.  The right kind of fear to have in prayer is the fear of God like Jesus had, Heb 5:7.  A healthy dose of the fear of God in prayer strengthens your faith.  An unhealthy dose of the fear, on the other hand, will cause you to dread.  And dread will weaken your faith.  It’s hard to follow the command, “when ye pray believe” if you dread.

Conclusion: We are to follow the Lord’s command, “When ye pray believe”.  Be certain to not let doubt, discouragement, and dread diminish your faith and limit the effectuality of your prayers.