Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

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2Dbunk
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Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by 2Dbunk »

Prayer usually takes the form of asking for personal help. And prayers are offered to those in need of help, so long as it isn't the enemy or some foreign entity that worships a "false" god.


In wars between two Christian factions (7-years, Civil, WW-I , WW-II, etc.) both sides prayed for the same God to see it their way. Nuns prayed for a certain NFL or college team to win; children are taught to pray for their parents and close relatives (so as to continue and insure their security).


Questions for debate: Are all prayers answered as some theists claim? What about between two factions as mentioned above? What about prayers offered by both sides in another war between Islam and Christianity?

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Post by ElCodeMonkey »

"No" is still an answer. I imagine that no Christian believes that all prayers are answered with a "Yes". That is super easy enough to prove. That ends up answering all your questions since clearly some are told no and others yes. So no conflict even between opposing teams.
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Post by Tcg »

ElCodeMonkey wrote:

I imagine that no Christian believes that all prayers are answered with a "Yes".

I would have thought that as well had I not entered into a discussion with a poster on the now defunct Amazon Religion forum. At least as far is her prayers were concerned, she believed that they all were answered positively every time she prayed.


It sounds extraordinary at first, but when you examine some of Jesus' claims in the gospels, her conclusion made perfect sense if ones beliefs are based on the promises the Bible makes.




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Post by 2Dbunk »

[Replying to post 2 by ElCodeMonkey]


Excuse me for not prioritizing my title-question of the OP. Is not most praying beseeching a deity to give special favor to the one praying -- a rather selfish demand that may take up God's time when he should be unraveling more important problems at other places -- HE should know that many significant problems DO exist any many more prayers are directed to those problems without serious effect.

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Re: Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by JehovahsWitness »

2Dbunk wrote:

Questions for debate: Are all prayers answered as some theists claim?

No I don't believe God even listens to the prayers of people he hates; biblically he just blanks them.
They don't exist as far as He's concerned, so He certainly doesn't listen to or answer their prayers.

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Re: Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by 2ndRateMind »

JehovahsWitness wrote:
2Dbunk wrote:

Questions for debate: Are all prayers answered as some theists claim?

No I don't believe God even listens to the prayers of people he hates; biblically he just blanks them.
They don't exist as far as He's concerned, so He certainly doesn't listen to or answer their prayers.
That's a really sad view to take of Jesus' loving, redeeming Father of all mankind. I'm not at all sure that it is consistent with mainstream Christianity, either.

Best wishes, 2RM.
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Re: Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by 2ndRateMind »

2Dbunk wrote: Prayer usually takes the form of asking for personal help. And prayers are offered to those in need of help...
It's somewhat trite to say, as I have heard from some of my transatlantic friends, that all prayers are answered, but sometimes the answer is 'No!'

Seems to me there are selfish prayers ('Please God, let me win the lottery' - 'Do me a favour; meet me halfway; at least buy a ticket!')

And there are unselfish prayers ('Please God, end human hunger, malnutrition and starvation!' - 'Do me favour; meet me halfway; at least commit some cash yourself!')

And there are semi-selfish prayers ('God bless mummy and daddy!' - 'Do me a favour; meet me halfway; try to be that blessing yourself!')

So, I don't pray all that much, these days. But when I do, it is with the expectation that the onus will be on me to make the improvement in the world I request, and that I simply need the moral fibre and character strength to do it. And to ask for these, whether for myself or for others in this vale of tears, is not, I think, an inappropriate use of prayer.

Best wishes, 2RM.
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Re: Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by 2Dbunk »

[Replying to post 5 by JehovahsWitness]
Questions for debate: Are all prayers answered as some theists claim? What about between two factions as mentioned above? What about prayers offered by both sides in another war between Islam and Christianity?
Okay, the first of the above two questions has been debated with a clear consensus that God doesn't answer all prayers, though the Bible claims otherwise.


But what about the second question? There is presently mounting animosity between Islam and Christianity -- who's side do you think God is on (they both beseech the same God)?
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Re: Isn't beseeching God or gods a form of self-service?

Post by FWI »

[Replying to post 1 by 2Dbunk]
2Dbunk wrote:Are all prayers answered as some theists claim?


No, they are not (at the least, not by the True God)…However, from a technical point of view, they surely can be. The bible tells us that Satan (a god) is the ruler of this world and has the power to give gifts or answer certain prayers, related to wealth, power and influence (Matthew 4:8-9). Yet, with a catch…

So, excluding the power given to Satan, there are limits and conditions, related to the answering of prayers, by God and/or His Son. For instance: If, you don't believe that God exists, you probably are wasting your time!

When, it comes to wars, it is God's will that prevails. Hence, prayers for victory in such conflicts doesn't determine the outcome. It was God's will that the Israelites would succeed in certain wars and in others they wouldn't. We can also review the two world wars of the 20th century, which clearly shows that God's will was in play and that "will" affected the final results. Yet, the bible also requires true believers to pray for their enemies, bless those who curse us, do well to those who hate us and pray for those who spitefully use and persecute us. Why? So, that God or His Son would possibly intervene to change the situation…

Therefore, the misuse of prayers are rampant and results in those prayers becoming unanswered or being answered by a source that we don't want to be trapped by. So, understanding the truth about praying to God and His Son is essential, where searching the (whole) bible can show us the proper way, to do so…

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Post by John Human »

If we take a quote from the Lord's prayer and pray that God's will be done, we'll get what we pray for. And if we pray for the grace to accept the will of God, whatever it may be, we might actually get that, too.
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