I came across a little series of books in a local Christian used bookstore from Watchman Nee called, Twelve Baskets Full. I have enjoyed reading this book like devotions with prayer and ponderings. This week, he had several short teachings on prayer that I thought would encourage you. Nee tells how Abraham was intentional in his prayer, how He approached God and was awarded with his prayers answered. Read this and think through how can we apply this and be more effective with our prayers. If you enjoy this from him, check out our Watchman Nee prayer quotes.
Abraham Didn’t Rush Into His Prayers
When God made it known to Abraham that He was about to execute judgment on Sodom and Gomorrah because of their wickedness, Abraham still waited before God. Then he began to pray for Sodom.
He didn’t just open his mouth and say: “O God, have mercy on Sodom!” Abraham laid hold on the fact that God is a righteous God, and that was the key to prayer concerning Sodom.
In deep humility and with great earnestness, he proceeded to ask God one question after another. His questions were his requests.
How Abraham Prayed
And as he proceeded in prayer, he stood steadfastly on the ground of God’s righteousness.
At length he said: “May the Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found there” (Genesis 18:32)? That was Abraham’s final request.
After God answered it, we are told that “the Lord went on His way” (Genesis 18:33).
Abraham did not try to hold to God; he did not try to go on praying. We read, “Abraham returned to his place” (Genesis 18:33).
Some people say he should have continued beseeching God, but the Scriptures show that Abraham knew God, and he knew the art of prayer.
The Heart of God in the Moment
Abraham heard the Lord say: “The cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great and… their sin is very grievous… the cry of it has come unto me” (Genesis 18:20-21). If there are not so many as ten righteous persons in a city, what kind of city is it!
Hebrews 1:9 tells us that the Lord loves righteousness and hates iniquity. The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah was the awful consequence of their sin, and it was the manifestation of God’s righteousness.
When He overthrew those cities, He did no injustice to a single righteous person; He “delivered the righteous Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the depraved conduct of the lawless” (2 Peter 2:7). Abraham’s prayer, which was to the point, was answered.
There is no unrighteousness with God. He did not “consume the righteous with the wicked.” We worship and we praise Him.