What is Prayer? #2

By Oscar M. Baker

Five points of this study were given in the last issue, and four points will be given in this article to conclude it.

Prayer is the breath of the new nature. It isn’t that God needs something, that isn’t the object. It’s not to help Him in any way. He has no need of us, and our prayers, and He isn’t ignorant of our needs and desires either. It’s our need, not His that’s under consideration.

Prayer is the breath of the new nature. It is not to change God. His mind and purpose is not to be changed, and they don’t. He’s ever willing and ready to give all the good gifts --- my how He’d like to! Parents can’t give a child a bicycle until he learns some of the rules of traffic, and how to take care of it, and keep out of the street, and so on. And that’s why God doesn’t give us all the good gifts because we aren’t ready to receive them --- we aren’t mature enough. And so the question is, are we ready to receive those good gifts? That’s the question! Of course you see, it’s we that need to be changed and not God. Prayer changes things, we hear, but it doesn’t change God. It changes the one who prays. It gets us in condition, the right mind to receive the things that God would give us. Now first, the one who prays must realize he’s helpless, and has no strength. He must realize that in his flesh, his old nature, dwells no good thing. And he must know that the most righteous things he could do are only filthiness in the sight of God. He must know this. So prayer shows us what we are, and how helpless, and so then by means of prayer we’re prepared to receive what He so longs and desires to give us. I want to make that emphatic! We find from God’s Word that He’d just love to give us blessings on top of blessings, but only when we’re ready to receive them!

Prayer is the breath of the new nature. Prayer should not limit God. Be very careful about that, don’t limit Him! We do not need to pray for Him to help us do something we are doing, but rather that He should perform it as He has promised. So often we say “me and god and a small god at that.That isn’t it!

Prayer is the breath of the new nature. So it’s up to us to take the low place, and not tell God how to run His Universe, as we’re so inclined to do, but to be occupied with Him. I think, in connection with this, you should read that little booklet, The Christian’s Greatest Need by Dr. Bullinger.

[From a collection of short studies on Truth For Today tape, 3/29/83 Other Studies on this tape: “Flaming Sword”, “Worship”, “Two Adams”, “Isaiah 6:9 & 10”, “Be Not Dismayed”, & “Profitable”.]