Expecting Great Things From God!
by Dr. Edward Watke, Jr.
In Matthew 13:58 it says that (about Nazareth)He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
In Mark 6:5 it says, Jesus could not do mighty works there, except to heal a few sick folk, because of their unbelief.
Consider the Texts: Psa. 81:10 ; James 5:16; Jere. 33:3.
The infinite, almighty God is able to give great answers to prayer.
Since He is God, the Creator, the Sustainer of all things, then it would be silly to quibble that He is unable to answer prayers -- any kind, to any extent-- as long as they are in His will.
God not only has the power to give might answers to prayer, He has the disposition, the desire to do so. He delights in answering prayers for big things for His children who love and serve Him.
He is the loving God, want to give all. -- Rom 8:32
He is able, willing. -- Isa. 59:1
He looks for ways He can bless. -- II Chron. 16:9
While many sins are mentioned in connection with prayer -- wrong motives, idols in the heart, unconfessed sin, disobedience, covetousness, etc, -- never, never are we warned that we are asking too much! Not once does the Bible hint any such thing.
Never once did the Savior warn people or advise them that they were asking too much!
One of our greatest sins about praying is that we do not ask for enough -- do not take what God is willing to give, do not give God an opportunity to prove His love and power toward us. James 4:2
I. God Invites Us to Ask for Big Things!
An amazing number of times in the Word of God, God has given us promises that He is willing to answer big prayers. It seems that He pleads with us, argues with us, urges us to give Him a chance to answer prayers for big things.
We must let His promises, His urging to transform our praying.
A. Psa. 81:10; Open thy mouth wide
1. Here God introduces Himself; give His credentials of ability, proof of power.
2. Need a great God to do something for you? I am the Lord thy God that brought thee out of the land of bondage.
3. Think of all that God did for Israel in that process, all that He has done for us!
4. Our God urges us to trust Him. God is jealous over His great name, power -- Mal. 3:6; Heb 13:8
5. He is willing to do today, as He did for them. He wants us to open our mouths wide, to take in all that He has for us. What He is able to give and so willing to bestow. Ask God for Great Things!
B. Jer. 33:3 call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and shew things . . .
1. God exhorts us to call on Him so He can givegreat and might things .....
2. God has in mind big prayers -- asking for great things from Him.
3. Israel was in great need. . . Nebuchadnezzar had surrounded the city of Jerusalem - Cf Jere. 32:17; Jere. 32:26-27; God was going to allow Jerusalem to fall only due to sin, to unbelief, not because of being unwilling or unable to free them.
4. God desires to give if only somebody will give Him a chance to do great and mighty things for He pleads with us. He wants to show His might power.
C. Mark 9:23 If thou canst believe. . .
1. In this story the disciples had tried but they had failed to heal.
2. The Father had said, If thou canst go anything, have compassion on us, and help us! The is the wrong IF. . . it is not the if about Christs power or His compassion.
3. The IF is -- will you believe, will you trust me.
Cf Matt. 17:20; 21:21, 22; Mk 11:22-24
D. Eph. 3:20-21 Now unto Him that is able to DO. . .
1. God is able to do anything; able to do above all we ask. Cf Matt. 7: 7-8
2. Able to do above all that we think. Not only able, but exceeding abundantly able to do above all that we ask or think.
3. What a challenge to ask of God, an able God, to ask and glorify God in the asking.
II. God Gives Illustrations of Asking Great things!
A. Abraham. . . Gen. 18:23-33
1. Note the faith; the large asking;
2. Note the continued asking, the bold requests.
B. Hezekiah -- II Kg. 19:14-19
1. Here was heart moving prayer;
2. God mightily answered the large asking;
3. The camp of Assyrians were destroyed by the death angel.
C. Elijah -- I Kings. 18; Cf James 5:16-18
III. God Intervenes When We Ask Great Things!
Little prayers are a sign of weak faith; and little faith grieves God.
A. Asking for Great Things glorifies God.
1. God desires to do great things -- He did for Gideon; for Samson; for Elijah; for Elisha; for Moses; for Joshua; for Hezekiah; for Daniel; for Peter; for Paul, etc.
2. Results on Mt. Carmel -- People said, The Lord He is God, the Lord He is God.
3. Surely God yearns over men; longs to show His power; such unbelief abounds among the saved. We ask so little of God. -We must give God opportunity to shew His might power.
B. Asking prospers Gods work. The work of God languishes because of small asking. Because of our prayerlessness fields close; churches dwindle; etc., Acts 4,5; Acts 12;
Study by Dr. Edward Watke Jr. #