James 5:15 "And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. 16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much."
When one reads about the prayer of faith in James 5:15, one is exceedingly encouraged to venture much upon God. Is someone sick? Find someone to pray! The promise is clear, God does not lie, many others have obtained answers, you have a great need: PRAY!
Maybe you are protesting as you read the above. You have had a dire need! You sought to learn. You offered many prayers, others have joined you praying. But the desired outcome has not come. Why not?
Is God to busy to help? Is God insensitive to the needs of His children? Is He unable to help? Is prayer just "make believe," bandied about by sincere though deluded people?
I think not. God answers prayer. I have sought answers and I have experienced wonderful interventions. Many others have as well. If He has answered those prayers, He will undoubtedly answer your prayers.
What does it mean to exercise the prayer of faith? Is it using certain words in a particular way? Is it having a particular frame of mind? Is it being hopeful? Does it require a group of people? Must other things come prior to that prayer? What is the prayer of faith all about?
In thinking and praying about the prayer of faith, in seeking help through that prayer, I have come to the conclusion that the prayer of faith is a very real thing, and can be exercised in our day as much as it was exercised in the past.
Any time a prayer of faith is being offered, a very real need is pressing. The prayer of faith is about something real that needs God's divine attention and intervention.
Matthew 7:7-8 (NKJV) “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened."
When supplicating God along the lines of the prayer of faith, there is a specific outcome in mind: healing, financial relief, help with a relationship, job, etc. The prayer of faith not only comes out of a pressing need, but there is also a specific outcome that is being looked forward to.
James 4:1 "From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? 2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not."
The prayer of faith is grounded in a strong desire to know and do God's will. The prayer of faith is not forcing God to do something that He would not do, nor is it about obtaining something that will give us a personal advantage of some kind that is apart from what is best for us. No, the prayer of faith includes a strong conviction that God's will and way is best. Instead of seeking what we want in a selfish way, we are praying for God to do what He knows is best, and which we know will ultimately be for our best as well.
James 1:5-6 (NKJV) "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind."
Psalms 119:105 "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet,
and a light unto my path."
The prayer of faith is not a "spur of the moment" prayer, that is casually prayed, expresses whatever comes to mind, and is abandoned after being offered if the desired outcome is not achieved. Rather, the one offering the prayer of faith has been studying the Bible, has been seeking to know God's general and specific will regarding the need, and prays accordingly.
Psalms 32:8 (NKJV) "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye."
Isaiah 30:21 (NKJV) "Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Whenever you turn to the right hand Or whenever you turn to the left."
Instead of being a quick, "Let's pray and get God's help," the prayer of faith comes out of moments in the Saviour presence when the need is discussed with a desire to hear God's thoughts and promptings in that regard.
Psalms 130:1-2 (NKJV) "Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord; 2 Lord, hear my voice! Let Your ears be attentive To the voice of my supplications."
The prayer of faith will sometimes be launched on the basis of a particular promise that seems to have been given by God in regards to the particular thing. In this regard I think of George Müller praying about the orphanage in Bristol, and suddenly having Ps. 81:10—"Open your mouth wide and I will fill it."—come to his mind as the voice of God urging Him to pray big prayers in regards to the project.
2 Corinthians 1:20 (NKJV) "For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us."
I believe humility is an important ingredient of the prayer of faith. Pride must be left at the door when we prepare to pray the prayer of faith. God will be hindered from answering if the individual praying, or individuals praying, are proud and are likely to take credit for the outcome.
James 4:8 "Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. 9 Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. 10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up."
Andrew Murray states that a lack of answers should drive us to search our hearts and search our prayers to see if something is amiss. The latter one is easier to deal with than the first. We don't like to examine our own hearts, but if we are going to succeed in praying the prayer of faith, we must do so.
James 5:16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much."
In James, the prayer of faith includes calling others—the elders of the church—to join in praying. The point is not only having others join in—there is greater power when we pray with others, but especially that others recognize that praying for the particular situation is according to God's will. If a group of people can agree, then it is more likely that God's will is truly being apprehended.
Matthew 18:19 "Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them."
As a result of studying the word, the ongoing impressions of the Holy Spirit and the leadings of providence, the encouraging promise and the affirmation of others, the prayer of faith is asking for something that one is convinced is according to God's will and therefore prayed with a persistence akin to Jacob wrestling with the angel.
Genesis 32:24-26 (NKJV) "Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. 25 Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob's hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. 26 And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.”
But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!”
Mark 11:24 "Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them."
As in all prayer, the prayer of faith is always asked on the basis of the merit of Christ and offered in His powerful name. We have no standing before God and our prayers are polluted. Therefore we pray as instructed by Jesus.
John 14:13 "And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it."
Continued praying is a key ingredient of the prayer of faith. Jesus said, "Give Him no rest....!"
Isaiah 62:6 "I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the Lord, keep not silence, 7 And give him no rest, till he establish, and till he make Jerusalem a praise in the earth."
Romans 12:12 "Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;"
James Fraser once wrote that the answer to the prayer of faith often initially comes in the form of a promise, and that praise and rejoicing should go up on the basis of the promise.
Zechariah 4:9 "The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto you. 10 For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the Lord, which run to and fro through the whole earth."
Philippians 4:4 "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice."
Andrew Murray states that one of the rules of the Father's family is that prayers get answered! If the above elements have been part of the process of praying, I believe that more often than not, the prayer will be answered in the best and most glorious way possible.
Ephesians 3:20 "Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,"
Those individuals who have a close and ongoing relationship with God are the individuals who are most likely to pray the genuine prayer of faith. The prayer comes out of the abundance of a close relationship with God. The prayer comes from a heart that has learned to trust God and recognizes God's loving hand in all outcomes. The prayer comes with an awareness that God sometimes overrules prayers for reasons that may not be understood, but is to be accepted, such as when Paul sought deliverance from a thorn, but learned the thorn was a point of strength in his life.
2 Corinthians 12:7 "And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. 9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."
Any answers are the result of God's mercy, not the merit of the person praying, nor of the particular words chosen, nor the fervency with which the prayer is uttered. While it is true that the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous person avails much, it is much more true that it is God's loving kindness that brought the answer. Give all the glory to God. I believe the danger of taking credit or pretending to have some special power in prayer are among reasons why God said to "call the elders"—plural—to make sure that no individual gets the credit.
Psalms 118:21 "I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me,
and art become my salvation."
Here are some excerpts on the prayer of faith from a variety of famous Christians. Further down on this page you will complete resources on this important subject.
My favorite quote on the subject comes from James Fraser, a missionary in China: “A definite request… made in definite faith, for a definite answer.”—James Fraser quoted in Mountain Rain by Eileen Crossman.
Fraser also said the following in a letter regarding the prayer of faith: "I have been impressed lately with the thought that people fail in praying the prayer of faith because they do not believe that God has already answered, but only that He will some time or other answer their petitions. This is not the faith that makes prayer effective. True faith glories in the present tense, and does not trouble itself about the future. God’s promises are in the present tense and are quite secure enough to set our hearts at rest. Their full outworking is often in the future, but God’s word is as good as His bond and we need have no anxiety. Sometimes He gives at once what we ask, but more often He just gives His promise (Mark 11:24)."
Andrew Murray reminds that a heart full of God has power to pray the prayer of faith: “A heart full of God has power for the prayer of faith. Faith in God begets faith in the promise, in the promise too of an answer to prayer. Therefore, child of God, take time, take time, to bow before Him, to wait on Him to reveal Himself. Take time, and let thy soul in holy awe and worship exercise and express its faith in the Inﬁnite One, and as He imparts Himself and takes possession of thee, the prayer of faith will crown thy faith in God.”—Andrew, Murray, With Christ in the School of Prayer.
William Patton asserts that we must believe that God will be true to His word and should claim the desired need on the basis of special promise: "There is no prayer acceptable to God, but the prayer of faith; and that this simply means, that all prayer must be offered in full confidence that God will be true to his word. What, then, is the Scriptural doctrine of the prayer of faith? Simply this, that when we pray, we must fully believe that God will be true to all that he has promised. This implies that we are ready to learn what his promises are, and to make them the basis of a sure expectation.—William Patton, Prayer and its Remarkable Answers.
In his book, The Ministry of Intercession, Andrew Murray points out that many people pray without regard for the conditions stated in the Bible, and accordingly don't get answered: "In answer to the question, But why, if the answer to prayer is so positively promised, why are there such numberless unanswered prayers? we found that Christ taught us that the answer depended upon certain conditions. He spoke of faith, of perseverance, of praying in His Name, of praying in the will of God. But all these conditions were summed up in the one central one: "If ye abide in Me, ask whatsoever ye will and it shall be done unto you." It became clear that the power to pray the effectual prayer of faith depended upon the life. It is only to man given up to live as entirely in Christ and for Christ as the branch in the vine and for the vine that these promises can come true. "In that day" Christ said, " ye shall ask in My Name." It is only in a life full of the Holy Spirit that the true power to ask in Christ's Name can be known. This led to the emphasizing the truth that the ordinary Christian life cannot appropriate these promises. It needs a spiritual life altogether sound and vigorous to pray in power'. The teaching naturally led to press the need of a life of entire consecration."—Andrew Murray, The Ministry of Intercession
R. A. Torrey affirms that the "Prayer of faith" is the great secret of getting what we need in our personal life: "The prayer of faith" is the great secret of getting what we need in our personal life; what we need in our service; what we need in our work.”—R. A. Torrey
George Müller said, "Everything that I needed for myself or my family I received from God in answer to prayer, without ever appealing to any human being in the whole world for anything, or even informing any human being of my need. . . . When I was in forty-two countries all over the world engaged in my missionary labors, I often needed to pay down £100, £140, yea, even £240 for a passage to Australia, to and fro, for myself and Mrs. Muller, but I always had the means of doing so without asking any one for help." George Müller, Narratives
Ellen White points out that faith-filled prayers bringing the abundant blessings of God are dispensed by Jesus: “The summing up of the benefit of prayer is that devotion that leads to faith in God's promises. This faith is the key that opens the divine treasury, is the hand by which we appropriate to our use the richest gifts of God. The prayer of the contrite heart unlocks the treasure house of supplies, and lays hold of omnipotent power. This kind of prayer enables the suppliant to understand what it means to lay hold of the strength of God, and to make peace with him. This kind of prayer causes us to have an influence over those with whom we associate. The prayer of faith is not listless, dry, and uninteresting. It wells up from perfect trust and assurance, and by its fervor makes manifest to the world, to angels, and to men, that you do believe in God, and have made Christ your personal Saviour. The Lord Jehovah accepts the argument that is presented in the name of his Son, and places the resources of his merit at your command. It is our privilege and duty to bring the efficacy of the name of Christ into our petitions, and use the very arguments that Christ has used in our behalf. Our prayers will then be in complete harmony with the will of God. Then it is that Christ clothes the contrite suppliant with his own priestly vestments, and the human petitioner approaches the altar holding the holy censer, from which ascends the incense of the fragrance of the merit of Christ's righteousness.”
James Fraser referred to the prayer of faith as an official "notice to quit" to the devil: “Satan’s tactics seem to be as follows: He will first of all oppose our breaking through to the place of a real living faith, by all means in his power. He detests the prayer of faith, for it is an authoritative ‘notice to quit.’ We often have to strive and wrestle in prayer before we attain this quiet, restful faith. And until we break right through and join hands with God we have not attained to a real faith at all. However, once we attain to a real faith, all the forces of hell are impotent to annul it. The real battle begins when the prayer of faith has been offered.” James Fraser
So what is the prayer of faith? It is a very specific request, expressed with definite faith, for a very specific outcome—like James Fraser wrote to the people who were lifting his ministry up in prayer.
Elsewhere on this website I mention 19 reasons why prayers are not answered. They include the prayer not being according to God's will, the prayer being offered at the wrong time, sin in the life, sin in the life of the person praying on behalf of others, etc. If you are not getting answers to your prayer of faith, (1) first search your life and your habits to see if something is amiss. If so, make corrections. Often sin that is unconfessed and unforsaken will prevent God from answering the prayer of faith. Then (2) consider your lifestyle and habits? Are there things in your life that are not bringing glory to God and that may be hindering God granting your request? Be serious in seeking God's direction in this. Then, (3) search your prayer. What is the need? Has the person being prayed for sought to make things right with others and with God? Are there contributing factors to their situation that need adjusting? Would God be glorified by answer the prayer? Finally, (4) consider the people praying for the individual and the context of the praying. Are they living in such a way that God can heed to their prayers? What is the motive for praying? Will God gain the glory?
In doing this careful examination, don't come to believe that the prayer will be answered on the basis of merit being accrued by making things right, etc. There is no such thing as creature merit. Any and all merit a man or woman has comes from the life and death of Jesus. If this prayer is answered, it is God's gift in every way!
Recognize as well that God is sovereign and He can answer prayers when He wants to, even if the person seems utterly unworthy. Sometimes prayers going up for what may seem like a very godly person are going unanswered, while prayers for another person who seems far less worthy are getting through? God often uses illness and challenges to reveal Himself to those who are coming to know Him, and answers to prayer have played a mighty role in the conversion of many individuals. But, realize that God cannot and will not answer prayers for individuals who are rebellious even though they know better. If God were to answer those prayers, it would suggest that God does not care what we do. Not true!
Recognize as well that there is a great controversy going on, which sometimes limits God from responding because doing so would affirm the devils' lies, as occurred in the case of Job. Job was a perfect man according to the Bible. Because Job was perfect, Satan attacked him before God, claiming that Job only served God because of the blessings being poured out in his life. Under the circumstances God was prevented from helping Job, because to have helped Job would have affirmed the devil's lie! In the end, after the trial was over, Job came forth with double of everything that he lost—granted his first set of children will only be with him after the resurrection.
So, don't give up on God. He knows what He is doing and will use all the circumstances in your life for His glory, if you are serious about walking with Him and serious about getting your prayer answered.
Finally, there is mystery here and unique circumstances that seem to defy explaining. Some day we will understand even as we are fully understood (1 Cor. 13:12). In the meantime we must be patient and continue serving with full confidence in our Heavenly Father.
The following documents from famous Christians will help you better understand the prayer of faith. Read them carefully and prayerfully; you will be blessed.
This lecture is the fifth of a twenty-three part series on revival which he gave in New York City, at a time of financial difficulty. His talks were published in 1835, and then revised and republished in 1868.
“The prayer of faith is a prayer that reaches through, consciously touches God’s throne, and then rests unshakably in the assurance that the answer will come in God’s time." (Read more on what Wesley Duewel said on the subject.)
"Refused!" some will exclaim; "is not the prayer of faith always answered?" Yes, but what is the prayer of faith? Is confident expectation that our desires, our will, whatever it may be, will be accomplished—is this the prayer of faith? Is it not rather the prayer of presumption? The prayer of faith for external blessings is always conditioned upon the Divine will. "If it be thy will." "Thy will, not mine, be done." The prayer of faith is the simple confidence that He will accomplish our real good. But prayer makes his will our will, and thus in the true prayer of faith is our will also done. His will is always that all things shall work together for our good, and thus is our highest good accomplished. Thus prayer trains our moral nature, gradually brings our will in accordance with his will, which is the true goal of all our strivings." (Read the rest of what Le Conte said in this book on religion and science.)
"The prayer of faith, then, is the prayer in which God Himself gives the petitioner an inward assurance by His Spirit that the thing he prays for is according to God's will and has been granted. The prayer of faith can thus only be prayed in that which is according to God's will, if the petition is not according to His will God withholds this assurance. The absence of this assurance therefore is proof that it is not the will of God to heal the sickness concerning which we pray unless indeed such lack of assurance is due not to God’s unreadiness to give but our failure to spiritually discern the same through our unfamiliarity with the inward witness of God in prayer." (Read the rest of James McConkey: Healing and Prayer)
"if we don’t get our prayers answered just as we want them, it is no sign that God doesn’t answer prayer. For instance, my little boy when he was eight years old, wanted a pony. He got his answer: It was “No.” Was his prayer answered? Of course it was. I got him a goat. A pony might have kicked his head off. A goat was a good deal better for a boy eight years old than a pony. It is a foolish idea to think that God has got to do everything you ask." (Read the rest of Moody's answer on this important question.)
"You and I often fail in our faith because of ignorance and besetting sin (Heb 12:1). There is the mighty ocean of power all around us, but for some reason we cannot tap it. It is like the electric current, which refuses to help us unless we have instruments precisely adapted to transmit the driving-power. Faith is absolutely necessary for the conveyance of God's power to meet the need and sin and sorrow of the world." (Read by faith is so necessary for getting answers to prayer.)
"Faith is fellowship; I give myself up to the influence of the friend who makes me a promise, and become linked to him by it. And it is when we enter into this living fellowship with God Himself, in a faith that always sees and hears Him, that it becomes easy and natural to believe His promise as to prayer." (This is a key article on the subject in this section of path2prayer. Read it carefully to gain the full blessing.)
"If the name of Christ is to be wholly at my disposal, so that I may have the full command of it for all I will, it must be because I first put myself wholly at His disposal, so that He has free and full command of me. It is the abiding in Christ that gives the right and power to use His name with confidence. To Christ the Father refuses nothing. Abiding in Christ, I come to the Father as one with Him. His righteousness is in me, His Spirit is in me; the Father sees the Son in me, and gives me my petition." (Read another deeply instructive teaching of Andrew Murray on obtaining answers when we are abiding in Christ.)
I came across two wonderful readings on the role of faith in the orphanage ministry of George Müller. Müller was led by God to establish an orphanage where funds would only be solicited in prayer from God. Eventually Müller's orphanage could care for close to 2,000 children and signally demonstrated the degree to which God is willing to answer the faith-filled prayers of His children. The first reading came from the "Introduction" to the Life of Trust, published to acquaint American readers with Müller's ministry by Francis Wayland an American Pastor and President of onetime President of Brown University. The second comes from the same volume and is found in an appendix and was written by an individual who had traveled from America to Bristol on several occasions to observe what was going on first hand. Both of these readings are wonderfully written and inspire much faith in what God can do.
"The most remarkable instance of the efficacy of prayer with which I am acquainted, is that recorded in the following pages. It seems, in fact, to be a practical illustration of the meaning of those passages of Scripture which I have already recited. A young German Christian, friendless and unknown, is conscious of what he believes to be a call from the Lord to attempt something for the benefit of the poor vagabond children of Bristol. He is at this time preaching the gospel to a small company of believers, from whom, at his own suggestion, he receives no salary, being supported day by day by the voluntary offerings of his brethren. Without the promise of aid from any being but God, he commences his work. In answer to prayer, funds are received as they are needed and the attempt succeeds beyond his expectation. After a few years he is led to believe that God has called him to establish a house for the maintenance and education of orphans. He was impelled to this effort, not only from motives of benevolence, but from a desire to convince men that God was a LIVING GOD, as ready now as ever to answer prayer; and that, in the discharge of any duty to which he calls us, we may implicitly rely upon his all-sufficient aid in every emergency." (Read the rest of Wayland's introduction to The Life of Trust: Being A Narrative of the Lord's Dealings with George Müller—a condensed version of Müller's Narratives.)
"I confess, on my first visit, in March, 1860, I had reserved to myself a wide margin for deductions and disappointment; but, after a few days of careful investigation, I left Bristol exclaiming, with the Queen of Sheba, "The half had not been told me." Here I saw, indeed, seven hundred orphan children fed and provided for, by the hand of God, in answer to prayer, as literally and truly as Elijah was fed by ravens with meat which the Lord provided. And now, after an absence of nine months, I am here again, moving about among these seven hundred children, examining their writing, and the progress they have made in the various branches of study, and their different kinds of work, — listening to their sweet voices in songs of praise to the God of the orphan, — passing through all parts of these vast buildings, that have been erected for their accommodation, — conducting their family worship, and addressing four hundred of them at one time, and three hundred at another, assembled in their respective dining-halls, the most silent, attentive, and earnest listeners I ever addressed; then enjoying hours of sweet converse, and prayer with Mr. Müller himself, — a privilege for which I shall ever thank God, O, it is good to be here!" (Read the rest of Dr. Sawtell's observations on Müller's orphanage in Bristol England, taken from an appendix in The Life of Trust: Being A Narrative of the Lord's Dealings with George Müller.)
This reading comes from a letter and a few other resources by James Fraser, a missionary in China. Fraser was seeking intercessory support for his work. His thoughts on this subject are among the more helpful ones to be found and are worth your time reading. Notice the following paragraph: "I have been impressed lately with the thought that people fail in praying the prayer of faith because they do not believe that God has already answered, but only that He will some time or other answer their petitions. This is not the faith that makes prayer effective. True faith glories in the present tense, and does not trouble itself about the future. God’s promises are in the present tense and are quite secure enough to set our hearts at rest. Their full outworking is often in the future, but God’s word is as good as His bond and we need have no anxiety. Sometimes He gives at once what we ask, but more often He just gives His promise." (Read more of Fraser on the prayer of faith.)
The following is a wonderful reading on the role Christ plays in answering the prayer of faith. You must read the entire article. Here is a taste of what you will find: "Our precious Saviour is ours today. In him our hopes of eternal life are centered. He is the One who presents our petitions to the Father, and communicates to us the blessing for which we asked. He is the medium of prayer through which man speaks to God, and the medium through which God imparts blessing to humanity. He is the Intercessor and the Bestower. Herein is the love of God made manifest, “not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” God has given assurance upon assurance, heaped gift upon gift, multiplied grace upon grace, and imparted his divine treasures to humanity, in order that we may believe the love that God hath for us." (Read all of this wonderful article on the role of Christ in bringing us answers to our prayers.)
In this reading, Patton gives necessary cautions on praying the prayer of faith. Notice: "The deluded class have also had an unpleasant experience. Persuaded that their theory of prevailing prayer was correct, they tried to reduce it to practice. In so doing, they had for a time seeming corroborations of their view, the facts coming out according to their desire and petition. This gradually emboldened them to enlarge their experiments, and to announce the result confidently before hand. “When the case was plainly going against them, they endeavored to believe more firmly; insisting that their faith was being put to the test, and that, in the end, it would signally triumph. Quite possibly, also, they fell into criticism of those who doubted their assurances of a favorable result, and thus grieved truehearted brethren and sisters, and created coldness where there should have been warm sympathy. Finally, they were put to confusion by the disappointment of their hopes and the non-fulfillment of their predictions; which left them on the edge of a reaction into an actual and sad unbelief; and for a time paralyzed their spiritual influence." (Read all of Patton's article on the prayer of faith.)
"Now, the prayer of faith is the pleading of this promise with God, thus taking Him at His word. The Lord Jesus here places a blank card in the hands of His saints, and bids them inscribe upon it just what they want. It is a note of hand which He bids them ﬁll up to any amount or character of blessing they require, and He will grant it." (Read all of Winslow's treatise on the Prayer of Faith.)