Why are believers promised the power of doing “greater works than these” (John 14:12) when they are unable to even recreate ‘regular’ works (i.e. not greater); like walking on water (John 6:16-21) turning water into wine (John 2:1-11) and raising the dead after four days? (John 11:1-44)
Why don’t the promises of prayer in the Bible align with reality? (Matthew 7:7, John 14:13, John 15:16)
E.g. why can’t we really get “whatsoever we ask the Father in His name”? (John 16:23) Or, “call unto me, and I will answer thee” – why doesn’t this really happen? (Jeremiah 33:3)
How can we expect God to help our unbelief (Mark 9:24) if He won’t answer prayer from someone who is doubting? (Mark 11:24, James 1:6-8, James 5:15)
Why is a ‘lack of faith’ used as an explanation for unanswered prayer, when the Biblical ratio of “faith to healing” is likened to “seed to mountain”? (Matthew 17:20) Why is reality the other way round?
Why was healing promised if God is under no obligation to answer sinners (Psalms 66:18, Isaiah 59:1-2, James 5:16, I John 3:21-22) who are born into sin? (Romans 5:12-14)
How can God see this sin after it has been washed clean (Revelation 7:15) and forgotten? (Jeremiah 31:34)
If God can see their sins (even after forgetting them) how are they ever able to be healed as a “sinner”? How does one escape this catch-22?
Why does the Bible frequently indicate prayer will be answered affirmatively (e.g. Matt. 21:22; Mark 11:22-24; John 14:13-14; James 5:14-15) when there are so many stipulations and clauses to the contrary?
- E.g. Selfishness (Proverbs 21:13)
- Doubt (Matthew 21:21-22)
- Greed (James 4:2-3)
- Pride (2 Chronicles 7:14-15)
- Unforgiveness (Mark 11:24-25)
- Stubbornness (Zechariah 7:11-13)
- Not fellowshipping (John 15:7)
- Not seeking to please the Lord (1 John 3:22)
- Unconfessed sin (1 Peter 3:12)
- Improper motives (James 4:3)
- Not asking according to God’s will (1 John 5:14-15)
- Not knowing how to pray (Luke 11:1)
- Lack of faith (Hebrews 11:6)
- Misunderstanding of faith (Mark 11:24)
- Wavering faith (James 1:6-7)
- Failure to apply spiritual authority (Mark 11:23)
- Lack of perseverance (Galatians 6:9) etc
Why isn’t the efficiency of prayer obvious when studied? (American Heart Journal (151, no. 4 : 934-42) Google Docs: “Intercessory prayer itself had no effect“).
Why would God hide Himself from these studies? Why is He hiding now when in the past He revealed Himself in so many different ways? (Exodus 3:2-6, 1 Samuel 3, Luke 9:35 etc)
Why was Paul’s prayer to remove his thorn in the flesh ignored? (2 Corinthians 12:7)
Why did Paul have to post-rationalize this unanswered prayer as an opportunity to “glory in [his] infirmities”? (2 Corinthians 12:9). In a modern context, why wouldn’t this rationale impress “new people”?
If answered prayer is credited to God and unanswered prayer to ‘bad faith’ – how is this any different than “selective observation”?
Why is selective observation so prevalent in Christianity? (E.g. how many times has the whole assembly rallied around someone extremely ill only for them to die according to the mysterious ‘will of God’?) How much more faith is needed?
Why was Jesus’ prayer to avoid the cross unanswered? (Matt 27:39, Luke 22:42)
Why is Jesus’ prayer for Christian unity still unanswered? (John 17:20-22)
Why was Paul’s prayer to be delivered from unbelievers in Jerusalem unanswered? (Romans 15:31)
Why is there a whole chapter in Acts that details the exact opposite of what Paul prayed for in Romans? (Acts 21)
Why is answered prayer dependent on the faith of a believer? Why is this so different to what happened to doubters in the Bible? (e.g. John 20:27)
Why is God under no obligation to answer prayers that fail to give Himself glory (John 14:13, II Cor 12:9-10) if we don’t know what gives God glory? (John 9:3)
If God is under no obligation to answer selfish prayer (James 4:3) what can a believer logically expect to pray for?
Why are the “left-overs” nonfalisfiable, self-fulfilling prayers? (E.g. “Lord, give me strength”, “Help me stay on the straight and narrow” etc)
Why didn’t Jesus or the disciples anoint people with oil? Why is the only mention of this healing ceremony documented after Jesus by someone who never met Him?
Why would God heal someone but permit the Devil simulate the “illusion of symptoms”? (E.g. “By His stripes I was healed…” “I already have the victory…”) Why isn’t this concept explained in the Bible? How does one demonstrate the “healing” to an unbeliever with persisting symptoms?