Thursday, March 5, 2015
“Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months” (James 5:17 KJV).
Why did Elijah pray like this, what was so special about his prayer that God answered it, and how can we have our prayers answered of God?
The “dispensations,” or sets of divine revelation that mankind is to believe and obey during precise time periods, change throughout time. Prayers are spoken according to God’s instructions specific to that time, so the contents of believers’ prayers vary from Genesis through Revelation. “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (verse 16). There is much profit in prayer today, provided that we pray in accordance with the “Dispensation of Grace” (Ephesians 3:2—Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon).
Prayer reminds us of the Scriptures applicable to the current dispensation and our life circumstances: if we pray in accordance with a former dispensation (such as God’s Word to Israel), prayer will not impact our Christian lives as God intended, thus resulting in more unbelief, disappointment, and confusion.
Two of the best prayer verses for this dispensation is what our Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 4:6,7: “ Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” What great memory verses!
We should “pray without ceasing” and “in every thing give thanks” (1 Thessalonians 5:17,18). Regardless of circumstances, we pray “in every thing,” and we are thankful “in every thing.” Remembering God’s Word to us about those circumstances will give us His wisdom and peace in those circumstances. We need to constantly think about God’s Word to us, whether about marriage, employment, schooling, parenting, finances, illness, or whatever—Paul’s epistles say something about all of these life topics. Start by reading Romans chapter 12, Ephesians chapter 4, and Colossians chapter 3.
Beloved, when we pray the Pauline way, we will guard ourselves from frustration and bewilderment, and our prayers will “avail much”….