Wednesday May 30, 2008
Hartsville News Journal
Page 3C
"Which prayers get answered?"

The title here seems to imply that some prayers do not get answered; how can that be?

God does not show favoritism, does He?
Does He consider some prayers more important than others?
How do I make sure my prayers will be answered?

God does not show favoritism but neither does He answer all prayers. In Matthew 6:5 KJV, you learn that God does not view all prayers the same:

And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Praying to draw attention from others is bad. Prayer is not for show; praying in this manner causes God to view you as a hypocrite. He justly rewards those who place their prayers on display:

James 4:3 KJV mentions another group that goes through life without their prayers being answered:

Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

Amiss is an incidental request; prayer is special. You cannot talk to God without Him feeling your sincerity. Lust and praying for personal gain will put a lot of distance between you and God.

You now visit Col. 1:9 KJV where you learn the importance of knowing the will of God:

For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

God holds nothing back! Praying for the knowledge of His Will shows your sincere interest in Him; it draws Him close, while at the same time assuring you that your prayers are heard.

Sincerity is number one! Here, David’s sincerity shows, as he opens up to God in Psalm 55:1 KJV:

To the chief Musician on Neginoth, Maschil, A Psalm of David.

Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my supplication.

David is hurting inside as he is begs God to listen. He is overpowered with sin and he wants to make sure that God hears what he has to say. Could you refuse anyone that approaches you in this manner?

God realizes that He is competing with Satan for your attention. No one is perfect and He loves it when you seek His help to battle temptation. Mark 14:38 KJV talks about this weakness and the solution:

Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit

truly is ready, but the flesh is weak.

Watch! Satan is the tempter; he spends 100% of his time tempting you away from God. He comes at you through your weakest link…your flesh. Your spirit is ready and your heart is in the right place but prayer is required for the strength you need to fight back.

It bears repeating; sincerity is a prerequisite to prayer. It is also an ingredient of faith. In other words, sincerity shows that you mean business.

Faith requires believing! You learn in Mark 11:24 KJV that this draws God’s attention to your needs:

Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

Now you know! The following steps are necessary for your prayers to be answered:

    Recognize that God has needs and feelings too.
    Be sincere when approaching God in prayer.
    Present your needs...not a laundry list.

Through 100% faith, believe that God will answer you.

God is 100% capable and He is 100% on your side.

Do you believe and understand this?

Are you doing your part…100%?


Pastor Billy Johnson can be reached by email at or viewed online at