Tuesday, September 9, 2014
September 9 – Praying as Moses did
Let your work be manifest to your servants, and your glorious power to their children. Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and prosper for us the work of our hands—O prosper the work of our hands! (Psalm 90:17 NRSV)
Most of the psalms are attributed to King David, but Psalm 90 is entitled a psalm of Moses. Scholars believe that it had been passed down by oral tradition from generation to generation, and became a frequent prayer among all the people of God for hundreds of years.
But how can it be a prayer and a promise at the same time? That’s the beauty of the Word of God. He teaches us that prayers made by godly men, are to be imitated and treated as a promise that God intends to fulfill. Our prayers should be based on who we know God is, His character, His promises, and His will. If you don’t know any of those, your prayers will not be effective at all. When we pray with the knowledge of what God has already promised and purposed, we can have full assurance that God has said yes, and amen to what we have asked. As far as God is concerned, it’s done. It’s just up to us to stay in that faith until we see it. (See 2 Corinthians 1:20 for that reference.)
If Moses, David and all the Israelites had been praying this against the will of God, He would have severely rebuked them. Yet here it stands as an example for us to follow. Why would God want us to pray for what is already His will? If it’s His will, why won’t He just do it? God’s will includes our cooperation. He wants us to reach out to Him, and hold Him accountable for His promises. To stand firmly on those promises, to cry out to Him and act in faith as if they were already true. That is the only way faith works.
For those who feel that asking God to prosper them is selfish and bordering on sinful, obviously Moses had no problem with it. When word repetition appears in the Bible, “prosper…yes, prosper,” that means that God is being emphatic. Even demanding.
Good and moral Christians, faithful tithers, givers of time and care for others, can stand by and watch evil steal many things that should be protected by God. That’s because few truly stand on His promises. They may tithe, but when a potential problem arises, they cave in and allow the devil to eat away their possessions. They imagine that nothing will harm them just by virtue of their giving. But a tithe is a representation of the faith in each of us. If we have no determination to fight for God’s promises to come true, our tithe turns into just a monetary donation. A warrior with a weapon, who is too passive to use it, is an impotent soldier.
Our crucial weapon is to pray as Moses did, and as King David recorded here for us. Insist on God’s promises coming true for you. We’ve been learning about the passage in Isaiah 14:24 “Surely, as I have planned, so it will be, and as I have purposed, so it will happen.” God is calling us to plan and purpose His promises to come into being in very real ways here and now. Begin to determine that His will in heaven will be done right here on earth, in your own life. Let His work be manifest and let His glorious power be seen!