I Will Not Pray For You

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Rippon, May 14, 2006.

  1. Rippon

    Rippon
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    No , I will not be discussing Jeremiah 7:16 where the Lord says : So do not pray for this people nor offer any plea or petition for them ; do not plead with me , for I will not listen to you .

    Nor am I about to talk about Jeremiah 11:14 where the Lord tells Jeremiah : Do not pray for this people nor offer any plea or petition for them , because I will not listen when they call to me in the time of their distress .

    Neither will I go into Jeremiah 14:11 either : Then the Lord said to me , " Do not pray for the well-being of this people . "

    It is not my intention ( at this time )to develop the theme of Christ's words in His prayer to His Father in John 17:9 : I pray for them . I am not praying for the world , but for those you have given me , for they are yours .

    All of the preceding verses can be addressed in another thread at another time .

    I do think that there are times when prayer for someone is not called for . They very well know what they must do from the Scripture which has been plainly declared to them . Charles H.Spurgeon had this experience as detailed in his autobiography -- The Full Harvest : Volume 2 , chapter 14 .

    A lady came to me , after a service in the Tabernacle ,and asked me to pray for her . she had been before to speak to me about her soul , so I said to her , on the second occasion , ' I told you very plainly the way of salvation , namely , that you are to trust yourself in Christ's hands , relying on His atoning sacrifice . Have you done that ?' She answered , ' No ,' and then asked me whether I would pray for her . I said , ' No , I certainly will not . ' She looked at me with astonishment , and again asked , 'Will you not pray for me ?' 'No,' I replied , 'I have nothing for which to pray for you . I have set the way of salvation before you so simply that , if you will not walk in it , you will be lost ; but if you trust Christ now , you will be saved . I have nothing further to say to you ; but , in God's name , to set before you life or death.' Still she pleaded , ' do pray for me !' ' No ,' I answered , ' would you have me ask God to shape His gospel so as to let you in as an exception ? I do not see why He should . His plan of salvation is the only one that ever has been or ever will be of any avail ; and if you will not trust to it , I am not going to ask God anything , for I do not see what else is wanted from Him . I put this question plainly to you , " Will you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ ? " [ After more conversation along these lines she believed savingly .CHS went on to say : ... She has often told me since how glad she was that I refused to pray for her ...]
     
  2. Joseph M. Smith

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    Seems harsh at first, but the account you gave us sounds like "tough love". Spurgeon must have recognized that in some way she was avoiding a decision, averting responsibility, and that if he agreed to pray for her, she might be able to wiggle out by claiming that "nothing happened" as a result of those prayers. I like it!

    I like it even better when I think of those times when someone asked me to pray for them, I agreed to do it, and then forgot.

    I like most when I think of those times when someone asked me to pray for them, I said I would, but never had any real intention of keeping the promise. For that I am truly sorry.
     
  3. Brother Bob

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    Thats a tough one, don't think I measure up to that for the Lord said to pray for your enemies. I might of prayed for her that God would guide her in the right direction so she might see her wrongs.
     
  4. standingfirminChrist

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    Acts 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

    Maybe he should have prayed that God would open her eyes rather than say, 'No, I will not pray for you.'
     
  5. standingfirminChrist

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    Amen, Brother Bob!
     
  6. doulous

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    Brother Bob said:

    standingfirm said:

    Guys, you may be missing what Spurgeon said. He did pray for this woman, but after praying for her soul once, what else could he have done? Do you think if Spurgeon prayed for her second time that she would have come to faith? Probably not. She would have asked him for prayer a third time, a fourth time, a fifth time etc. etc. Jesus used the same tactic with the rich young ruler. He didn't tell the young man, "I will continue to pray for you." No, the Lord knew His heart was in darkness and He challenged Him on that point. This is why the rich young ruler left grieved. I believe Spurgeon knew the condition of this womans heart, and he gave her the same type of challenge. I call that pastoral wisdom.
     
  7. npetreley

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    Maybe Spurgeon did exactly what the Holy Spirit led him to do, and God used it, as He intended, as the way to draw her to Him.
     
  8. standingfirminChrist

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    I see no where where Spurgeon prayed for that lady. As a matter of fact, all he admitted to was explaining the way of salvation.

    He should have prayed for God to open her eyes to the way of salvation.
     
  9. Rippon

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    SFiC , perhaps on the first occasion in which she had seen him he prayed for her . It doesn't say explicitly , but the main thing is Spurgeon wasn't about to play games . She had not owned up to the claims of Christ and Spurgeon would not have that . He stopped her in her tracks . " I'll pray for you. " sounds good and comforting , but it is no cushion to lie on when you are rejecting Christ as the only means of salvation . Spurgeon was a true surgeon of the soul .
     
  10. standingfirminChrist

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    ya know, when someone asks me for prayer, I pray for them. If they are saved, I pray for God's will in their life, if unsaved, I pray that God will have His way in their life... that He will show them more perfectly the way of salvation.

    Either way, I do pray for them.
     
  11. npetreley

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    Typical free-willer response.

    She got saved. We have no way of knowing for sure whether or not Spurgeon did what he did because he was led by the Holy Spirit, yet we still know the final outcome. Whose work was that? Was it God's work, or man's work that got her saved?

    Yet you still think you know better, and what he should have done. That's because to a free-willer everything depends on man, and what man does, and how well he does it. Man-centered Christianity. It's an oxymoron, but it's what it's all about these days.

    When the Son of Man returns, will He find faith on earth? Doesn't look good, unless He meant faith in men.
     
  12. npetreley

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    If you are praying in Jesus' name (which means according to His will, not just invoking His name), then your prayers have meaning. If you are praying in your own name (you can invoke the name of Jesus all day, but the reality is that you are praying just because you think it's the thing to do), then your prayers mean nothing.

    This is an excellent prayer. It is, however, contradictory to the free-willism semi-pelagian view of things, unless you really mean "I pray that God will have His way in their life when it comes to everything except for salvation". It is utter nonsense to pray that God will have His way in a person's life as pertaining to ALL things, and then turn around and say that the person can only be saved if he makes that decision, himself, of his own free will.
     
  13. Brother Bob

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    All of you that are standing up for Spurgeon I honestly ask you personally;

    Would you turn someone away who came to you and asked for prayer?

    Anyway, I answered what I would do, and again I say I would of prayed for her. If that is a free-willer, then I sure glad I am one of which I am not. I am an Old Regular. Thank you,

    BBob

    doulous; Where did it say Spurgeon prayed for her?
     
  14. npetreley

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    That's not the question. Spurgeon didn't turn her away, he said he wouldn't pray for her and explained why. The reason was that he told her what she must do, and she wasn't willing to do it. He wouldn't turn around and pray for "another way" for her to come to Jesus.

    As for your personal question, I don't know if I would pray for her or not. Under normal circumstances I would pray for her. If, however, I was overtaken by the urge to tell her what Spurgeon told her, and I could ALSO tell that I wasn't just being cold because of some bitterness in me, then I would do just what he did. If the urge didn't come from bitterness or some other self-centered motivation, I'd have to assume I was being led by the Spirit to tell her exactly what she needed to hear at that time.
     
  15. NateT

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    One thing I'm not sure we know is what the details of her request were. Perhaps when they met before the lady had asked for prayer that God look favorably on her.

    I thought this was going to be a thread about not praying a specific request. Like "please pray that my boyfriend and I find an apartment that we can move into."
     
  16. standingfirminChrist

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    The thread appears to me to be someone trying to justify why they don't have to pray for the lost.
     
  17. Scott J

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    I thought you guys believed that it wasn't necessary for God to open a person's eyes?

    I just responded to a post by Me4Him where he said that everyone had the ability to recognize good and evil. If that is true then wouldn't Spurgeon have been praying for God to violate this woman's will? Wouldn't he have been asking God to be a cruel puppet master by interferring in this particular woman's decision? Wouldn't it have been manifestly unfair for God to open her eyes while not doing the same for every other lost person alive at that time?
     
  18. npetreley

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    I don't get that impression.

    But it is a mystery to me as to why a free-willer would pray for the lost. If God will not interfere with their will, what are they asking God to do? Woo them? I thought free-willers believe God does that anyway, because God is not willing that any perish, and God draws ALL men to Himself.

    "God I want this person to be saved, but I know you're the perfect gentleman who never forces Himself on anyone, so I can't rightfully ask you to change that person's heart. That would violate your decision not to interfere with their free will. But I just want to let you know that I want them to be saved, so that you'll know I'm a good guy."

    In contrast, the Calvinist can pray that God will draw His lost sheep to Him, knowing that our prayers are in perfect accordance with His will. Will God save the elect even if we do not pray for them? Of course. But (most) Calvinists know prayer isn't about getting God to do something He wouldn't do otherwise.

    Like Jesus said, God knows what we need before we ask, so you'd almost expect Jesus to follow that up with "So don't bother asking". Yet that's not what He said at all. He told us to pray. Why? Because it aligns us with God's will, keeps us aware of our total dependence upon Him, and keeps us in a state of gratitude for the things He grants to us according to His will.
     
  19. Brother Bob

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    npet; You have a way of bringing out the worst in people. Something in me wants to respond and type a Calvinist prayer but it would be swapping railing for railing, so I will resist the temptation and pray for you and all people in the situation that woman was in. [​IMG]
     
  20. Scarlett O.

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    Good post, Brother Bob.

    I cannot imagine not praying for lost people. I often pray during the invitation time at our church that God will not stop knocking on the heart's door of the lost.

    I pray for the message of the sermon and music and the tesimonies not to all on deaf ears.

    Sometimes I pray to God that this will be the day of salvation for the person in the congregation that is closet to eternal hell.

    Praying to God to move upon the lost with His grace and mercy is given. I don't understand otherwise.

    And I do pray for the lost other days of the week, not just Sundays.

    Peace-
    Scarlett O.
    <><
     

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