Are Your Prayers Safe From Satan?

A young Christian in my 20s, I had recently devoted my life to Christ and had already found in prayer a comfort and a shelter from evil. Once, I was awakened by the rattle of the chain lock on my apartment door. Barely awake, I struggled saying only His name: JESUS. That one-word prayer was immediately effective. The rattle was never heard again. Never since have I forgotten the power of that prayer.

Yet among professed Christians, I have heard a most disturbing statement: “Satan answers prayer too.” What!? As a young “babe” in Christ, I was bewildered and sorely affected that Satan could be putting words in my mind to pray and then answer them. At least that was what I was told. Unbelievable! Still, I pressed on to align my life with Christ and allow Him to live in my heart.

More than than forty years later, I have learned that my prayers are not as immediately answered as that night I was barely able to whisper the name JESUS. Sometimes I must wait in order to simply develop more patience. Sometimes my prayers are not immediately answered so that I may become more fully prepared for the fulfillment of my request. I have even learned that sometimes JESUS just wants me to watch Him work through the vicissitudes of my life to accomplish a deeper faith in His ability to do anything but fail me. And yes, sometimes, He simply says NO. And I trust that He knows what is best for me. He knows the very end from the very beginning. Always, there is a lesson to be learned.

Now more than forty years later, to hear that Satan is given the privilege to engage in the sacred communion of prayer between an omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent God and His trusting child has unearthed within me an anger and a pain almost inexpressible. How can any sincere Christian believe in the power of Satan more than in the power of an ALL-POWERFUL GOD? At least that is what they imply when they make such statements.

Yes. The circumstances may seem impossible. Yes. The time, maybe, has worn long. Still, God expects His own to believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently worship Him. (Read and meditate on Hebrews 11:6.)

And yes. It is true that the psalmist warned against regarding iniquity in the heart, so that the Lord will not hear. (Read Psalm 66:18.) King Solomon identifies those who regard iniquity in the heart. Here’s what he said in Proverb 28:9: “He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.” King David in Psalm 109:5-7, prayed against those that reward evil for good and hatred for love. Those are they who may expect a wicked man to be over him and Satan to stand at his right hand, the position of power. Those are they whose prayer becomes sin.

“Those who bring their petitions to God, claiming His promise while they do not comply with the conditions, insult Jehovah.” COL 143 That is presumption. We are not to presume upon the mercies of God. He is not to be trifled with.

“If we regard iniquity in our hearts, if we cling to any known sin, the Lord will not hear us; but the prayer of the penitent, contrite soul is always accepted. When all known wrongs are righted, we may believe that God will answer our petitions. Our own merit will never commend us to the favor of God; it is the worthiness of Jesus that will save us, His blood that will cleanse us; yet we have a work to do in complying with the conditions of acceptance.” {SC 95.3}

Persons who are “too wise in their own conceit to search the Scriptures with contrition of soul and earnest prayer for divine guidance, they have no shield from delusion. Satan is ready to supply the heart’s desire, and he palms off his deceptions in the place of truth.—(The Great Controversy, 523.) {Pr 226.1}

“The prayer of faith [however] is the great strength of the Christian and will assuredly prevail against Satan. This is why he [Satan] insinuates that we have no need of prayer. The name of Jesus, our Advocate, he detests; and when we earnestly come to Him for help, Satan’s host is alarmed.”—(Testimonies for the Church 1:296.) {Pr 63.2}  

“Wicked men and devils cannot hinder the work of God, or shut out His presence from the assemblies of His people, if they will, with subdued, contrite hearts, confess and put away their sins, and in faith claim His promises.—(Selected Messages 1:124.) {Pr 120.2}

Jesus promises power to those who belong to Him. In fact, He added in Luke 10:19, this: “nothing shall by any means hurt you.” Psalm 129:4, states this: “The LORD is righteous: he hath cut asunder the cords of the wicked.”

When you are alone with God, sincerely seeking Him in humble, quiet tones, you may be assured of safety from the wicked one. In fact, he cannot even hear your prayer. Listen to this! “Secret prayer! How precious! The soul communing with God! Secret prayer is to be heard only by the prayer-hearing God.”—(Testimonies for the Church 2:189, 190.)  {Pr 178.1}

“We can safely commune with Him of all that is in our hearts.”—(Testimonies for the Church 5:200, 201.) {Pr 8.3}

If somehow you still believe that your prayers are not safe from Satan, please prayerfully read this final statement by Ellen G. White, a servant of the Lord, about the battle over your sincere soul.

God Sends Reinforcements of Angels to Our Aid in Answer to Prayer—If Satan sees that he is in danger of losing one soul, he will exert himself to the utmost to keep that one. And when the individual is aroused to his danger, and, with distress and fervor, looks to Jesus for strength, Satan fears that he will lose a captive, and he calls a reinforcement of his angels to hedge in the poor soul, and form a wall of darkness around him, that heaven’s light may not reach him. But if the one in danger perseveres, and in his helplessness casts himself upon the merits of the blood of Christ, our Saviour listens to the earnest prayer of faith, and sends a reinforcement of those angels that excel in strength to deliver him. Satan cannot endure to have his powerful rival appealed to, for he fears and trembles before His strength and majesty. At the sound of fervent prayer, Satan’s whole host trembles. He continues to call legions of evil angels to accomplish his object. And when angels, all-powerful, clothed with the armory of heaven, come to the help of the fainting, pursued soul, Satan and his host fall back, well knowing that their battle is lost. The willing subjects of Satan are faithful, active, and united in one object. And although they hate and war with one another, yet they improve every opportunity to advance their common interest. But the great Commander in heaven and earth has limited Satan’s power. (Testimonies for the Church 1:345, 346.)  {Pr 256.5}

Therefore, trembling one, be assured that “the earnest prayer of faith will baffle his strongest efforts.” Now then, go head and pray. Never fear to “take ‘the shield of faith,’ brethren, ‘wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.’”(Testimonies for the Church 5:294.) {Pr 63.1}

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