Atty. Adriel B. Gran

Did God really promise to answer our prayers for physical and material blessings? In this age of grace, how are we going to pray and
what we should pray about?

When a believer prays, he must pray with the spirit and with understanding (1 Cor. 14:15). It is not enough for man to just bend his knees, bow own his feet, or stretch forth his hands and then utter anything he desired, believing that God will answer him positively.

Prayer is a dispensational issue, so he who comes before God must come within the ambit of his present dealings.

There must be no contention as to whether or not we should pray, for we should. In fact, it is every believer’s obligation to talk to God in prayers (1 Thes. 5:17, 18). However, to appreciate much the doctrine of prayer, let us do the following;

First, let us understand that God ushered a new dispensation called the dispensation of grace, which is distinct and separate from other dispensations.
Second, let us understand the nature of this present dispensation as well as the nature of our service in it. And,

Third, let us understand the will of God for the members of the Body of Christ and the ministry of the Holy Spirit.


Suffice to say that we do not know what to pray about. Paul said, “Likewise the spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered” (Rom. 8:26).

How come that believers today do not know what to pray? Is it not probably because most, if not all, of our prayer requests are not the concern of God for this present age?

It is very clear in the Holy Scriptures that the nation Israel
was afforded with physical and material blessings (Deut. 11:8, 9). God thereat did acts that were visible to their naked eyes (v.7) for he dealt with them materially and physically.

These physical and material blessings extend to “the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of the sheep” (Deut. 28:4).

Only these chosen people were urged to obey God’s commandments with the condition that if they transgress the same, they will be meted with corresponding physical punishment (Deut. 11:16, 18).

“If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD; then the Lord will make plagues, and of long continuance, and sore sickness, and of long continuance” (Deut. 28:58, 59).


Sin in the “time past” restricts the prayer of man (Ps. 66:18; Isa. 59:1, 3).
“then shall they cry unto the lord, but he will not hear them: he will even hide his face from them at the time, as they have behaved themselves ill in their doings” (Micah 3:4).

So man, must first confess his sins before he could again have access before him (Prov. 15:29; 2 Chro. 6:19-25).

“He covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy” (Prov. 28: 13).

Prayer at this time was specific, and God also responded them with specific result. Look for example, Samson, when he prayed for physical strength, God answered him positively. When Hannah prayed God to open her womb so she could have a child, God did what she sought for. When Elijah prayed for the soul of the child, God answered him and let the soul of the child cam back again (1 Kings 17:21, 22).

What else can we say during the time when Hezekiah was sick unto death? After he cried and prayed before God, he was preserved and his life was entended for fifteen years (Isa. 38:1-5).

These are but few of God’s physical and direct interventions which He positively answered specifically.

Now, is God’s dealing with members of the Body of Christ the same as what he did in the “time past”? Absolutely NO!

In fact, when the apostle Paul prayed three times for the thorn in his flesh, he was not answered physically-like in the “time past”, but rather God answered him spiritually.

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weaknesses. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Cor. 12:9).

This goes to show that God is dealing with believers today differently and distinctly from that of His previous dealings with the nation Israel in the “time past”.


To reiterate, we must not forget that God had set another program that is separate and distinct from that of the past generations. His dealings and concerns with the past dispensations are far different from the present dispensation of grace.

This present program is called the dispensation of grace (Eph. 3:1-3) “…which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men” (v.5a). It is a “…mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but NOW is made manifest to his saints” (Col. 1:26).

Because the revelation of the mystery was “…kept secret since the world begun (Rom. 16:25), it should follow that the saints of old were not aware of this present program and his particular dealings with members of the Body of Christ.

They were ignorant concerning our salvation by grace through faith on the finished cross-work of Christ apart from works (Eph. 2:8, 8; Rom. 11:6).

They do not know that we have been justified by faith, that we have peace with God and that we have now access by faith “…into this grace, wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God” (Rom. 5:1, 2).

Now, our prayers to God are unhampered because aside from having access to him by grace, we also “have forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” (Eph. 1:7).


Unlike in the past dispensations of which sufferings were the result of God’s punishing act- and were considered signs of God’s displeasure, our in the present age of grace sufferings are part and parcel of the grace ministry. It is now a privilege given y Christ.

Apostle Paul stressed this fact to the Philippians when he said, “For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake” (Phil. 1:29).

Thus, Paul encouraged us to stand firm in grace despite the tribulations that would come and go in our daily endeavors.

He made us understand that in this present age of grace, believers should all undergo sufferings of any sort (Rom. 8:20-23), while waiting for the glory that shall be revealed by Christ.

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Rom. 8:18).


How about our prayers today? What would be our prayer requests consist of? Are we not sometimes, if not all of the time, praying for peace despite knowing that God had already afforded us with peace (Rom. 5:1)?

What about asking for forgiveness? How many times we ask for it even if we knew that believers today have already been forgiven by God (Eph. 4:32; Col. 1:14)?

Are we not told that God wanted us to WAIT for our physical deliverance? But why are we consistently praying for it? The apostle Paul said, “For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, WAITING for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we see not, then DO WITH PATIENCE WAITH FOR IT” (Rom. 8:22-24).

So, why force God to do something physical and material today when he already promised us to do the same later? Are we already run out of patience for such hope? Or, just merely because we failed to “rightly divide” the word of truth?


Apostle Paul made it clear that our service under this “age of grace” is sacrificial. He said, “I BESEECH you, therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a LIVING SACRIFICE, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Rom. 12:1).

This kind of service must first be understood before we kneel down and pray. Sometimes, our prayers are overloaded with supplications even to the extent of petitioning God to ease our ministry with tangible blessings. How could we expect to do our ministry sacrificially if God will intervene and answer all our needs either physically or materially? Will it not run counter to His will if indeed, it is true?

So, having that in mind, we should let our prayers in harmony with the nature of our present dispensation and the nature of our service in it.


Contrary to the popular belief to ask God always- through prayer, of His will whenever man needs it, the bible told us that His all encompassing will is already given to us for our daily guidance. We need not ask for his will anymore for it was already revealed to us through his word (see Eph. 5:15-17; Rom. 12:2; Col. 1:9; 1 Thes. 5:18; 1 Tim. 2:4).

God’s will does not mean that God is predetermining what will happen in the future, or it is the manipulation of circumstances. Rather, it is the yielding of ourselves to the plan and program of God for this present dispensation (Eph. 1:5, 7, 9, 11).

It simply means that in order that all our actions are in accordance with His will, we must, henceforth, confine them within the limit or bounds of this present dispensation.

In one of Paul’s missionary journey, he was forbidden by the Holy Spirit to go to Jerusalem (Act. 21:4). The reminder of physical destruction was furthered by a prophet named Agabus, who also spoke the word of the Holy Spirit saying that the Jews of Jerusalem would bind him if he will go (vs. 10, 11). As a result, the disciples besought him not to go (v. 12).

But notice what Paul said, “…What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? For I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus” (Act. 21:13).

The disciples tried to persuade him well to no avail.

“And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done” (Act. 21:14).

Now, was the apostle Paul out of the will of God because he did not listen to the Holy Spirit? No! in fact, the succeeding verses told us about the great rejoicing of the elders of Jerusalem uon hearing that God also “wrought among the Gentiles by his ministry” (vs. 19, 20).

We need not ask God anymore as to where, when, and how we go for the ministry, for as long as it is for his glory and honor, then we are assured that what we are doing are in accordance with His will.


Knowing the ministry of the Holy Spirit, however, will help us better understand the kind of prayer that we will be praying before God.

Let us not forget that after the Holy Spirit sealed us- a guarantee of our inheritance (Eph. 1:13-14), he also strengthened us with might IN the INNER MAN (Eph. 3:16). These all concern for our spiritual well-being and not for physical stature.

In one of Pauls’ letters, we were exhorted not to be drunk with wine, “…but be filled with the Holy Spirit” (Eph. 5:18). Now, how could we be filled with the Holy Spirit? He told the Collosians, “Let the WORD of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom…” (Col. 3:16).

It is now the WORD of Christ that works IN the believers (1 Thes. 2:13). Let our prayers be in tuned with His word “rightly divided”, and not by the teachings of old.

- - - END - - -

For more information, please contact:

Pure Grace Ministries


Cell #: +63 905 776 3888


Make a Free Website with Yola.