Why do we pray? We pray because we are trying to convey our needs and thoughts to god. But isn’t god all knowing?? If so then he already knows everything we are saying..If we are praying because we are feeling depressed or insecure or frightened..then god already knows how we are feeling..when we pray for god to heal someone who is close to us from a problem or some illness..then god already know that we want him to heal that person…so I wonder..what is the point of praying to god for these things???
God knows best..of all the choices of action or inaction..God knows best..because an all knowing god knows everything right??? And these facts cannot be changed by any human being..and no one can change the fact that god knows best on what course of action is to be taken..and because god knows what is best..no human can change the will of god..God is an eternal being, perfect and all powerful, so he always knows what is best..If god wants to do something then he will do something..if he doesn’t want to do something then he won’t do it..So what would happen if you pray for a loved one to be cured from a serious illness?? God knows when the best time to cure that person, if god wants to cure that person then he will, if he doesn’t then he won’t..so what are people thinking when they pray to god to change his mind??
Is Praying against Gods will?
When we pray to god for something to happen is like telling god that we know better than him…we are indirectly telling god that we do not agree with the course of events that god has laid out..So when we pray for something we are indirectly going against gods will..We are asking god to act at a time that is convenient for us when god has already planned everything out..your prayers will not change the facts that god already had everything planned out..When we pray we are indirectly opposing god and his will, we are also harassing him and trying to tell him that we know better than him..When we pray we are being insolent, ignorant, misguided, and confused and mainly arrogant..
Jesus once said to one of his apostles “Get thee behind me, Satan”..he said this to an apostle who thought he knew better than gods plan even though the apostle was bemoaning suffering and meant well..so when you try to sway gods mind thru prayer you are behaving in the same way as that apostle..”With Satan beside you” when you think about what it means to pray, hope or wish for things..you will find out that you are not doing what god wants you to be doing!!!!
Is Praying Selfish?
Now that we understand that prayer is irrelevant to an all knowing god..why do theists do it?? The answers is probably that praying is for ourselves..The function that prayer plays is as the facilitator of introspective reflection..Theist religions call it prayer, eastern religions call it meditation..But psychologically it is introspection and reflection..In all cases it is connected to the internal states of the person involved..I think it seems dishonest to call it prayer..giving it a magical name will merely confuse impressionable people..
Prayer or meditation, whether it is Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Jewish etc…, is all for the self and not for god..because god doesn’t need it. But still most Christians and theists do not admit that is essential a very selfish action..
Matthew 6 : 5-6 lays out some rules about praying. It clearly says that you should pray in private.., "but thou when thou pray, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut the door, pray to thy father in secret, and thy father which seeth in secret shall reward thee".
It says that Christians are to pray privately..with their room door closed..Matthew is implying that Christians should do this because Christians that god knows their secrets..and rewards their trust in him..Matthew goes on to say how hypocrites pray in public where other people can see them praying, “that they be seen in public”. When we pray to god we are trying to appear good kind of like saying I am wearing the good guy badge..in order to gain social esteem.
Many Christian scholars and most Christians simply ignore these instructions..They have been praying in public, for display to everyone, on television and all other types of media..It seems very ironic to me that a Christian prays in public, displaying their affiliation to god, yet they ignore the very instructions that they believe their god has sent them. They are pretending to be serving god but in truth they are directly ignoring his instructions..
These three passages show that Jesus considered prayer, fasting, and alms giving as being a matter only between god and man..and that these actions should only be performed in private and without any witnesses..Jesus does not tell his disciples what not to do but he is quiet explicit about what he expects them to do..
By reading the gospel of Matthew we can see that the author did not only write down Jesus’ teachings but also his actions..and even mark Luke and john all mention Jesus praying exclusively from the public.. We read that 'he left them', 'he departed', 'he went a little further', 'withdrew himself' to pray (Matthew 26:39, 26:42, 26:44; Mark 1:35, 6:46, 14:32, 14:34-35, 14:39; Luke 5:16, 6:12, 22:41)Jesus also prayed in the presence of his disciples and not publically.. John 11:41-42, 12:27-28 and 17:1-26.
Matthew 6:7 - And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.
Most protestant theologians use this verse to beat the Roman Catholic with.. The endless litanies of the Catholic ritual, the rosary repetitions, and the prayers recited as penance - all these practices are condemned by these words of Jesus.
John mentions that is the words of Jesus remains within a Christian then his prayers will come true..Now this may sound a bit odd and difficult to digest but there are more verses that go ahead and clarify about when it is that a prayer will come true..The bible says that it simply requires that you ask in the name of Jesus and that all you need is a tiny bit of faith in order for your prayers to come true..
“Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” ..Matthew 21:21-22
Considering the amount prayers made by Christians in the world doesn’t it seem that surely by now all hatred would be gone? All diseases cured, and that all people would be converted to Christianity.???And that gods will be done everywhere??? It seems pretty clear that either Christians aren’t praying for these kinds of things to happen or that prayers are not being answered after all..Now some Christians might say that the verse above says “if” you have no faith and “if you do not doubt” and that all humans had some doubt and that’s why those prayers didn’t come true..But if you read the bible properly multiple verses state that all we have to do is “ask” it doesn’t say that the bar is placed very high so that it is difficult or almost impossible for the average Christian..All four of the gospels in the New Testament tell exactly the same story..
Mark 11:24-25 (NIV)
“24Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
25And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
“7Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:”
8For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
“Jesus said: If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it..”
Matthew 18:19-20 says that wherever two or more Christians gather together, Jesus will be there in their midsts granting whatever they wish for..the bible infact says that you only require the smallest amount of faith in order for our prayers to come true..
6He replied, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you.
20He replied, "Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."
Prayers of Christians
Jesus clearly states many times that prayer should not be done in public but in private and behind closed doors..and by reading the 4 gospels we can see that Jesus practiced what he preached..he always prayed alone in private and a few times with only his disciples. Matthew also mentions that prayer should not be repetitious “with much speaking” “as the heathens do”..this criticism has been made many times of those people who bring attention to their own prayers..Jesus clearly states that prayer should be made in private..and these instructions appear no less than 17 times in the new testament...so Christians who make their prayers vocal for others to hear are rebelling against gods wishes. And even those who pray in repetitive chants or routines are rebelling against god..both of these are pretty common in Christian liturgy and in most of Christianity..
there are quite a few more verses about prayer in the bible..according to Jesus, if Christians have just a tiny bit of faith then their prayers will come true..including such miracles as moving mountains and trees..we can see clearly that these verses seem to be untrue..these verses show us that the bible is not a literal text full of literal truth. many Christians believe that when the bible says that prayers will come true it means that they will come true in the afterlife or in heaven..the problem with that is that Jesus specifically states that he is talking about prayer coming true physically in the real world..(e.g..regarding moving mountains and fig trees).the bible is therefore not even full of symbolic truth..we can see that those 17 or so verses involved are pure fantasy. Now it is easy to imagine how verses like these make believers very happy about the power of their religion and their god..but I am guessing that this source of happiness is rarely taken seriously by the believers themselves..
In conclusion Christians believe that god is all knowing and all powerful..so every prayer that is made, god already knows, so the point of prayer cannot be to reveal things to an all knowing god..the wishes of prayer can only be against god’s will..because god already knows our prayers and needs and he will act upon them when he feels it is the right time..so who are we to keep bothering god every single day with our prayers???are we trying to make him change his plan and make exceptions just for us even though he knows when the best time is??
One might also ask that how do prayers come true whenever they do..well if prayer works then it is either coincidence(where you prayed for something that was going to happen anyways) or that you knew better than god so then god intervened..the latter is impossible..
If a supernatural concept such as prayer goes against gods will then it is satanic..so prayer is either useless or satanic..so what business then do theists got in praying…???I just want to warn all you Christians out there that you must be very careful of your own motives whenever you get together to pray.