THE END OF PRAYING?
Elwin R. Roach
He That Hath An Ear
His Works Were Finished
The end of praying? Who has ever heard of such a thing especially when Jesus said, "My house is the house of prayer..." (Luke 19:46), and Paul reinforced the thought with, "Pray without ceasing" (1 Thes. 5:17). It goes without saying that many have come to the end of praying for one reason or another. Perhaps they have lost the flame in the downpour of worldly activities, or they cant seem to find the time. Some, we are sure, feel that since prayer seems to no longer work, there is no need to put forth the effort. Bringing an end to prayer in these ways is not what we want to address today. There is a positive side to the end of prayer, and we see this when Solomon prayed.
"Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house" (2 Chr 7:1).
Before continuing, we should see what Solomons prayer was: "Now, my God, I beseech thee, let Thine eyes be open, and let Thine ears be attentive unto the prayer that is made in this place. Now therefore arise, O LORD God, into thy resting place, thou, and the ark of thy strength: let thy priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let thy saints rejoice in goodness. O LORD God, turn not away the face of thine anointed: remember the mercies of David thy servant" (2 Chr 6:40-42).
There is certainly nothing wrong with such godly desires, and when those desires are not a part of our lives, we should pray for them. However, things change when revelation sets in and it becomes abundantly clear that Gods eyes are always open, and His ears are ever attentive unto the prayers in His name. Moreover, if the prayers are in His name, they are made while in the holy place, else they are not in His name. His eyes do not dim and grow heavy with sleep, nor does He turn a deaf ear to the cry of His elect.
When we, with open eyes, see that there has never been a time when He was not in His resting place, we will end our praying for that which has always been. Until that dawns upon us, we will pray, but not after His light shines in that area of our understanding. And for us to pray to be clothed upon by salvation will end when we walk in its reality. If, perchance, we ignore our Lords sweet presence and the calling in our lives, ever so humble as it may be, we may find ourselves crying out in a bed of sorrowful tears as the thorns are burned. To willfully sin after knowing the truth is to crucify Him afresh, putting Him to open shame. Hebrews 6:4-8 makes this clear, as well as Heb 10:26-27. In the midst of such peril, we would certainly pray. When we soil Christs pure garments of salvation, we can expect a washing, and I can assure you it will be more than a foot washing. It will be a washing of fiery indignation, and it will devour the adversaries the root, branch, and fruit of those sins. Godfire has a way of doing that. It is a very effective cleanser when unleashed in a persons life.
There is that praying without ceasing Paul spoke of, which is a lifetime of pouring ourselves out to God and His purpose. This is an eternal thing which has no end. It is not a temporal prayer asking God for things, it is a life of fusing every fiber of our being into Him.
When our lives are an outpouring prayer of love and sacrifice to our Lord, we will not pray to be clothed upon with salvation; for it will be a present reality. When we are touched by the finished work of victory, when our eyes are opened to every battle won, when the devil is not a factor in our lives there will be no prayer for these things to be done. If we walk in darkness, however, we will certainly echo Solomons prayer: "...Let thy priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation...."
If our prayer is a perpetual one of giving ourselves to God and His Kingdom, we will not sit back and say, "God, since I am your workmanship, I am your responsibility. I will, therefore, lay in the beds of my pagan queens, wives, and concubines as did Solomon. I will fulfill my every desire and turn my face from you and worship their gods. If this is not pleasing to you, I pray that you stop me, otherwise, I will do everything my eye sees to do." Although such a scenario seems ridiculous, it is the attitude of some. It must be, for that is what we see, and like Solomon, there is no repentance.
However, when our hearts beat in union with Solomons father, there will be no need to keep praying for God to finish His work in us. He has a specific place in His Kingdom for each son of God. We have no fear that He will not bring forth His workmanship to full fruition. It never enters our minds that He would turn our faces away from Him, the very One who is our living breath and source of life. With His flame of love burning steadily in our hearts, we know He will never remove us, His anointed, from His ordained purpose for His creation? No! Never! Not in a million billion years! Each and every son of His love will fulfill his purpose.
Brethren, there is a time when we can see the victory before it is in the earth. With that vision looming before us, the trumpets of praise will be sounded. When we are awakened to those things which have already been in our midst, we will bring an end to our praying. Regardless of what it might be, when we know something we have prayed for arrives, there is no need to continue praying for it. Paul said the same thing about hope, and it is the same with prayer: "For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one also hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it" (Rom 8:24-25).
If all those things for which Solomon prayed are lacking, then we should pray. We should pray for their revelation and reality to arise in our hearts and lives. We should especially pray for our blind eyes of unbelief to be opened; for without our eyes being opened, it is impossible to believe. And without proper vision, we will not know with whom we walk or even who we truly are. We will walk in darkness as sleepy sinners saved by grace, rather than living Sons of the Morning who bring light to all.
There are those, however, whose eyes seem to be open, but something is amiss. Their vision is not by the inspiration of the right spirit. It is very possible to see and declare a fact; but the truth can be lacking. Therefore, just because people see things beyond the basic, human plane does not mean they see as they ought. We know a number of people who have a much greater grasp of things than the average Christian; but it is not by the Spirit of Jesus Christ. It is by His Spirit that revelation comes. He is the true revelator of Gods mysteries. I do not hesitate to say no one will ever receive from the Spirit of Christ who refuses to confess Jesus as his Lord. When they refuse His cross, His resurrection, His ascension and descension, His lordship they refuse His Spirit of revelation, pure and simple. If they have a spiritual unction, and they see some of the basics of life, yet they view Jesus as merely another great sage from which to learn, their unction is from another spirit. It is thought to be Gods anointing; but it is not. We see a flood of this coming forth today. Spiritual truths are being mixed with the dust of the earth and are sweeping away quite a number. It is hard for some to distinguish between the fruit of the tree of Life and that of the tree of knowledge, and they eagerly eat that lifeless word. It does wonders for the flesh, but nothing for the Spirit. And Their Eyes Were Opened
"For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil" (Gen 3:5). And after His resurrection, "He took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them. And their eyes were opened, and THEY KNEW HIM" (Luke 24:31). What a difference between knowing good and evil and knowing Him. Which knowing would you rather have?
Adam and Eve did not eat the broken bread from the tree of Life, the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. They did not receive it in patience from the hand of blessing. They took it! With impatience, they hurried their godhood by taking the fruit of unbrokenness from the tree of knowledge and ate it from their own hand. There was no communion of humble brokenness in their fruit, but of tall-standing pride from the stolen fruit the beginning of mans religion. Their eyes were opened, and for the first time they saw that they were as gods, naked gods, of course, with their earthen nature exposed to all, and void of the covering light and life of Christ.
You see, my friends, eating the fruit did not make them gods, it merely opened their eyes to what was already a fact, that which was veiled by Gods presence. Although they had been created in the image of God, they knew it not, and until their eyes were opened, in effect, they were not as God. For example, even though a man is set by God as the head of his household, if he does not know he is the head, especially if his wife takes charge, he is not the head.
Adam and Eve did not know they were gods. They had no understanding between good and evil; therefore, they could not walk out their godhood. However, when their eyes were opened, they could see and they became an open manifestation in the image of God, yet this was in knowledge alone, not to mention their dominion over the earth and all of its inhabitants. Their image was not in the divine character, nature, resurrection power, or incorruptible, eternal life of God. Their life was age-lasting rather than everlasting. Although with their eyes having been opened, they would die and not live.
Perhaps we can now see why two people who are speaking the same thing are so far removed from one another. Such as the thought of Psalm 82. "I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High" (Psa 82:6), and of course Genesis 3:22, "Behold, the man is become as one of us."
Both verses are clear. It is not hard to see what is being said. A third-grader can understand it. So what is the problem? Simply put, one person takes the fruit of that word as inspired by the serpent of pride; while the other receives it from the hand of our Lord, the slain Lamb, from He who was broken. The first will proudly proclaim that they are one of the gods; while the other, says not a word. He merely is who he is, manifesting his godhood as he follows the slain Lamb withersoever He goes. He does not have to tell anyone who he is, his presence declares it. As with his Lord before him, it can be said: Although he is in the form of God, he does not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, plundered or taken; but rather, he empties himself, taking the form of a servant, and being found in appearance as a man, he humbles himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross of dying daily (Phil 2:6-8 NASB and paraphrased).
Can we see the difference in the good and evil of these two? Ones eyes are opened by receiving and eating the broken bread of Life when it is given to him, and he simply lives by the experience of who he is. The others eyes are opened by taking the fruit of knowledge, which puffs up. One humbly receives by the spirit of revelation and lives. The other grasps after, takes, and plunders by the spirit of the self-willed religious mind, the serpent, the dragon, and he proudly proclaims it. And it is this which serves nothing to the proclaimer except death, as Psalm 82:7 concludes the thought. "But ye shall die like men...."
You see, it is not so much whether we see and hear or whether we dont. That which determines whether we live or die is by what spirit we see and hear. The eyes and ears that God has opened are the ones which are the receivers of light and life.
He That Hath An Ear
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches...." This phrase is used seven times in the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ. This, we know, is not by accident. It speaks very expressly of completion, of what it takes for people to be complete. Namely, they must HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT IS SAYING. When we have an ear, it is then that we can hear and receive what the Spirit is saying. It is then that we can turn and see the voice that speaks to us. It is then that we are in the midst of the house that is filling with His Glory, so much so that no man can minister therein .
There is no man who can give himself an ear to hear. It is likewise impossible for anyone to open the ears of those whose ears God has closed. It is God alone who can do this. "And the LORD said unto him, Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the LORD?" (Exo 4:11).
Therefore, Brethren, if the LORD has made people deaf and blind to what the Spirit is saying, if Jesus spoke in parables to the masses, but plainly to only a small number, it is highly unlikely that any man can decide to hear on his own, and it is certainly beyond any mans feeble ability to make another to hear. It simply cannot be done. Mans intellect, as brilliant as he may be, will not suffice. His money will not be a ticket into the Kingdom of God, nor the lack of money. God will laugh at ones prestige, popularity, and power. Deaf and blind people may be charmed by a mans charisma and knowledge of many facts; but the Lamb and those who follow Him are not amused or impressed. Dead mens bones grieve them.
Let us note again, Luke 24:31, and see how, and by Whom, the eyes were opened of the two that Jesus walked with to Emmaus: "He took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them. And their eyes were opened, and THEY KNEW HIM" (Luke 24:31). It was from the hand of Jesus, and when they received the bread their eyes were opened. Nothing changed around them. Jesus did not suddenly appear physically from the heavens and stand before them with declarations of His Sonship. No, not at all! He was already there. The only thing that changed was their vision. Their eyes were opened by receiving bread from Jesus, their Lord and their God and THEY KNEW HIM !
Moreover, we can see in this short statement a long journey. We can see Jesus life from Bethlehem to the cross, with those two events enfolding his walk throughout the land. Thus, being prepared as bread for humanity. God blessed Him (Thou art My beloved Son in Whom I am well pleased), and then He gave that bread as broken upon the cross. Jesus signified the giving of Himself to His own when he gave the bread. It was broken, yet coming in resurrection Life, and the magnification of that life when they knew Him.
The womb received Him. Bethlehem, the stable and the manger, as well as Nazareth and Egypt, likewise received Him. The Jordan river, the wilderness, Judea, Galilee, the sea, and the Gadarenes received Him. And then Mount Hermon, Jerusalem, the Garden, Herod and Pilates courts all received Him, not to mention the cross, the grave, and finally the cloud and the heavens. And it is no wonder; for all who receive the Lord will eventually have their ears and eyes opened and they will live. He left no place in mans domain which was not filled by Him, and there will be a day when they hear, see, confess, and live. Praise God! They will all know Him; for in signification of what was to come they all received Him!
Some today have said that they feel I am condemning them, as if they are falling short, missing out when they read the words our Father has so graciously planted in my heart. They shouldnt; for I know, as mentioned previously, there is not one man in the whole world who can see unless God opens their eyes. And if He doesnt do so, they are not held responsible for something they have not received, cannot see, and do not understand.
How could I condemn a blind man for being blind. Only if the blind Pharisee says he sees, is there cause for concern: "Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth" (John 9:41). A sick man cannot be made whole if he declares that he is not sick, and likewise with those who are blind and say they see. Their sin of missing the mark of what is real will remain as they live in their pseudo world of religious imaginations, legalisms, dead works, and accursed hypocrisies. Men such as these cannot run with the footmen, and will rail against the horsemen for running to fast.
Let us, therefore, pray that we receive of the Lord and truly see that which is real. Let us pray that the very glory of God that is presently in His house is made known to us. It is then that we will be able to see the unveiling of that which is finished and we will come to the end of our praying. Notwithstanding, in our letting, if the end of our praying is not at hand, let us pray that fear and unbelief do not grip our pure minds.
His Works Were Finished
Paul said something of this fear and unbelief: "Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. For we which have believed do enter into rest..: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world" (Heb 4:1-3). That is, "...namely, from the works done at the foundation of the world" (Diaglott). You see, as I wrote before (see Pub. #00.133 & #00.135, free upon request), the rest is entering the finished works. When we enter a finished work, all labor ceases. When a man finishes building a house, he doesnt walk into that finished work and continue driving nails in the walls. So why do we keep try to do something that God has finished?
"For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his" (Heb 4:10).
Did we note that? As it is with ceasing from praying, there is a time when we cease from our own works. When reality spreads her wings of light over our minds, darkness flees, and we enter the finished works of God. This is not to say that we set back on our laurels and nothing is done, nor does it suggest we start doing things we assume are the works of God. Not by any means! Neither fit into what this word is saying. It simply means that we move and have our being in and by the Spirit, nothing more and nothing less. Not one thing is done by human effort and produces sweat. Such might be mans way but not Gods.
As we read on, it seems that the writer is telling us different. He talks about labor. "Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief" (Heb 4:11). A closer look, however, reveals that there is no conflict of thought. The Greek word for labor in this verse is spoudazo, which means to use speed, be prompt or earnest. Simplified, it is saying that it is imperative to use speed when it comes to entering that Sabbatical rest. Rather than allowing fear to creep in and bear the fruit of unbelief, let our hearts be eager to believe, and believing by hearing the voice of the anointing. In so doing, we will cease from our own labors. We will leave the toil of religious works and enter Gods rest, which is finished.
The finished works are all around us and in us, and when we receive the word which is streaming from the heavens of His throne, we will see and enter therein. And how joyful it is when we are prompt and quick to believe that which is given to us and we embrace that which is finished.
With heaven's treasures streaming from on high, sometimes unclear, yet shimmering beautifully as a celestial display of the Aurora Borealis, it becomes increasingly clear that Gods works are finished some we see, and some we dont; some are manifested to us, and some are not; some we embrace, and some we dont. Needless to say, even though we do not see all things manifestly finished, this does not negate the fact that they are. And with those things which are we can either believe the simple truth of the word, or we can disbelieve it. We can receive it or discard it. We can rejoice in it, or bemoan it. Choose ye this day, for it lies at the threshold of the door. Yet in all our believing, choosing, receiving, and rejoicing it is always in and by the Spirit! Let us, therefore, hear what the Spirit is saying, and in doing this, we can reckon it so.
When a true reckoning is known, we will make an end of praying for that which is finished, and the fire of God will come down from heaven, and consume the burnt offering and the sacrifices of all the pain and sorrow of our broken lives. And in their place will be the glory of the LORD filling His house of you and me and all the Sons of God!
The Pathfinder • PO Box 4004 • Alamogordo NM 88311