– John F. Walvoord
Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10b) because “to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20). That doesn’t sound like God is limiting what we ask or think about in prayer. God is not limited by time, space, or resources like we are, as “the earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof” (1 Corinthians 10:26). God told Israel that “if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine” (Exodus 19:5), but only if they (and we) obey God’s voice as recorded in the Word of God and keep or obey His commandments.
Jesus thought nothing of mountains since He was their creator and so said, “If you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20). But it must be according to the will of God. If so, there is no limit to what we can ask for, so “ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7).
Prayers of Faith
James, the early leader of the church at Jerusalem and the half-brother of Jesus, said that “the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven” (James 5:15); however, “let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind” (James 1:5). Our doubt is telling God, “God, I believe You, but I doubt that You can do what I ask.” Instead, pray, “God, I know You can do all things. So it if is Your will, please …” and then just ask, seek, and knock in faith.
Seeking the Lost
We know that we’re commanded to seek those who are lost as part of Jesus’ imperative command to “go into all the world” (Matthew 28:19-20), which is God’s will. We should pray for our lost friends, family members, neighbors, and co-workers, knowing that God was “patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9) and that He “desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4).
There really is no limit to what we can ask if it is according to His will. God’s will is to exceedingly bless us, to move mountains if necessary, to pray in faith believing God, and to seek those who are lost. Think about this: God sought me, caught me, bought me, and taught me what I ought be. So pray with no limits, but only if you know it’s God’s will for your life.