Prayers Are Not Answered

Jesus promises that through prayer, you will receive exactly what you ask for.


The Truth Is…

Prayers are not answered. First let’s review the promises and then the proof that they are not answered.

Here are the powerful words of Jesus that promise your prayers will be answered just as you ask. The full verse and citation can be found below.

  • … anything they ask, it will be done for them
  • … if you ask anything in my name, I will do it
  •     I tell you the truth … you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.
  •    Whatever you ask in my name, I will do it,
  • … that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you
  • … Ask, and it will be given you
  • … ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
  • … believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
  •     For every one who asks receives
  •     For truly I say to you …nothing will be impossible to you.
  •  .. nothing shall by any means hurt you
  • … he who believes in me will also do the works that I do
  • … they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.
  •  … the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well;
  • … And the prayer of faith shall save the sick

Those statements are unequivocal. Jesus placed no conditions on these promises other than that one believed (in God, the father; not in Jesus’ resurrection obviously… he wasn’t even dead yet) and had faith (in God, the father; not in Jesus’ resurrection obviously… he wasn’t even dead yet).

He did not say that ….

  • your prayer will be answered if it is God’s will.
  • your prayer will be answered at a later time.
  • your prayer will be answered but you may not like the answer.
  • your prayer will be answered but you may not know it.

Jesus promises to give you what you ask. The only condition for receiving “whatever you ask for” is that you have faith (in God, the father; not in Jesus’ resurrection obviously… he wasn’t even dead yet) and do not doubt. There are no other conditions. He says you will receive  “WHATEVER/ ANYTHING ” you ask.

The Truth Is…

No prayer that requires supernatural intervention has ever been answered. Among a billion possible examples, we cite the facts that:

  • No amputee has ever had a limb spontaneously restored.
  • No child born with a birth defect e.g. cleft palate,  has ever had it spontaneously disappear after prayer.
  • No child born with downs syndrome has ever spontaneously recovered after prayer.
  • No one who has been officially declared dead has ever come back to life after prayer.
  • No schizophrenic has ever been spontaneously restored to normalcy after a prayer.
  • No one who is totally blind/deaf has ever spontaneously recovered his/her sight/hearing after a prayer.
  • No one diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease, or numerous other deadly diseases have ever been spontaneously cured after a prayer.
  • There are a whole lot of doctors in this world; none would be necessary if prayer worked.

How do we know?

Here is a list of 10 “miracles” people cite as proof that miracles occur. To save you the time of checking out the 10 “miracles”, here is a summary of the miracles:…

  • Apparition (3)
  • Stigmata (2)
  • Incorruptible Corpse
  • Weeping/Bleeding Statue
  • Levitation (observed in 1630 CE)
  • Eucharist (bread->flesh, water->wine, observed in 700 CE)
  • Sun did strange things (October 13, 1917)

If we know about these trivial nonsense “miracles”, we would certainly know about real miracles such as those listed above. A bona fide miracle would cause headlines in all newspapers all over the world. There would be before-and-after pictures, numerous appearances on religious TV stations, YouTube, etc.

One of these alleged miracles, Our Lady of Lourdes, has millions of visitors a year based merely on a 14 year old’s claim that Mary appeared to her. Isn’t it sad that these “miracles” are devoid of anything more significant than apparitions, stigmatas, and bleeding statues?  Who cares? What proof of God’s desire to intervene in a person’s life are these 10 “miracles”?

Jesus’s promises; full verses

Here are the verses where Jesus promises that prayer will work for you. Jesus places no conditions on these promises other than that one believes and has faith. In fact, Jesus prefaces some of them with words that accentuate the veracity of the words to follow; e.g. “Truly I say to you”,  Truly, truly I say to you”,  “I tell you the truth”, etc.

Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8

For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as 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 to you. Matthew 17:2

Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them. Matthew 18:19

I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer. Matthew 21:21

And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.Matthew 21:22 (Our favorite – so simple, just believe – in God the father by the way, not in Jesus’ resurrection!)

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24

“Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.Luke 10:19 (Hmm… and the evidence for this is what?)

John’s “quotes” from Jesus are different from the other Gospels. Here we have a total switch in the responsible person. Jesus does now say that answered prayer does require belief in him, Jesus.

“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father  John 14:12

Whatever you ask in my name, I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son; if you ask anything in my name, I will do it. John 14:14

If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.  John 15:7

James is back to requiring that you have faith in God, the father, that HE, the Lord may give it to you.

Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you  James 15:16 

And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. James 5:15,

Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: 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  James 5:15-16

There are no external writings telling about about multitudes of sick people who recovered after prayer. We only read, IN THE BIBLE, that Jesus healed a few who happened to be in his vicinity. Why didn’t he heal all lepers all over the world? Hmm? He allegedly had the power to do so.

No Wiggle Room For These Two Verses

Christians can create amazing excuses when confronted with the reality of unanswered prayer.  But there is one that cannot be danced around. That is the prayer that promises to heal the sick. Once the prayed for person has died of the disease the prayer was intended to prevent, it is obvious that the prayer of faith DID NOT cause the patient to “recover”!

And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues;   they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.  Mark 16:17-18:

“Recover”, Jesus said “thy will recover”. There can be no equivocation about what that phrase means. It means…”they will recover”.

Did Jesus Really Say That? (Mark 16:17-18)?

Since Mark wrote 40 years after Jesus death, the probability of Jesus having said those exact words is zero. More convincingly, however if Jesus really said “lay hands on the sick, and they will recover” (or drink deadly things), then people would have tried to heal their sick loved ones. After the sick failed to recover, Jesus would have been stoned as a false prophet. He would have been exposed as the charismatic nomadic preacher that he was. HE WOULD HAVE BEEN KILLED! Get it?

If you disagree, let’s hear what you have to say.

Did Jesus Really Say That? (Matthew 21:22)

And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. .Matthew 21:22

No room for equivocation there is there! WHATSOEVER YE SHALL ASK IN PRAYER, BELIEVING, YE SHALL RECEIVE.

Here again, we have the case that it would have been easy to expose Jesus as a false prophet. Again he would have been stoned.

Believers, Please Pray These Prayers

In  the links below, we have two prayers we would like a believer to pray for us.

Please Note: It doesn’t seem to us that prayers are truly answerable by an omniscient God because he would have already envisioned the concrete results of the future. Prayers are asking Him to change what he knew would happen.

14 comments on “Prayers Are Not Answered

  1. Suze says:

    The only thing I can say ‘works’ (and that, very occasionally) is when I hold an image in my mind of what I want – and don’t let my mind wander – until I fall asleep. I do that every night until whatever was desired ‘manifests’.

    I used it to quit smoking (successfully) and to get the job I wanted even though they initially told me they’d given it to someone else (then phoned me 2 days later to say it was mine if I still wanted it – their candidate turned out to be quite ill equipped for the job, it seems).

    Perhaps the most astounding result for me was the COPD the medical profession claimed I had, which suddenly turned into very mild case of asthma.

    Having done the mental image thing every night before I went to bed of being to breathe normally and being able to do household chores without difficulty, no one was more surprised than me when I literally woke one morning breathing normally just getting out of bed and getting dressed.

    And no one is more surprised that I can now do my own housework once again.

    So no, I don’t believe in supernatural miracles and gods and all that Jesus nonsense because I’ve demonstrated to myself that by using the power of our mind (as we drift off to sleep at night) will (generally) give us whatever it is we desire.

  2. Ken Morgan says:

    How true nothing fails like prayer,only if finding car keys,wallet,win a football game ,make a pimple disappear on a teenage girl tiny weenie jobs for a tiny weenie god

  3. M. M. says:

    Praying for someone does nothing to the person prayed for. The prayer satisfies your ego, gives you the impression that you have done something for that person. In reality you have done absolutely nothing. Your help is equal to zero.

  4. From a point of “quantum theory” – with a flavour of spiritual ideology from Buddhism – “prayer” – in its simplest “context” – is “shaping reality”. Another way of stating such is with “Dharma” – or “karma”…as illustrated via “The Law of Attraction” (“The Secret” is a fair illustration of such).

    With all of that as “context”, prayer – in the form as described, functions extremely well. Outside of that – such as the ideology of “wish lists” or “Santa’s Lists to God” – that is myth, that is lie and illusion, that is false hope – and, obviously – a complete waste of time and energy.


  5. Sharmila says:

    I myself is an evidence, my prayers are being answered. God hasn’t given me any bribe to say this. I say this because I know God exist for real and He is Jesus.

    • Ken Morgan says:

      How true nothing fails like prayer,only if finding car keys,wallet,win a football game ,make a pimple disappear on a teenage girl tiny weenie jobs for a tiny weenie god

    • Greg says:

      Sharmila, what did you pray for and receive that was not explainable by coincidences or other natural phenomena? Name even one documented case of say a missing limb restored, a blind person suddenly seeing after prayer, etc. If prayer works, why don’t you pray for all wars to stop, and all abused or sick children to be healed, etc.–and expect it to happen? Why is it that millions of people pray for these things every day (at least some would have the faith of a mustard seed, no) and yet they don’t happen? Please don’t use the “not God’s will” rationalization, because according to the Bible, Jesus did not put that caveat on his promises about prayer. All he said is that if you have faith what you pray for will be done. Not might be, but will be. Another website had an interesting example about how people use “confirmation bias” to conclude that prayers works. Confirmation bias is the tendency to accept or believe things that fits ones preconceived or preferred views, while rejecting anything that could refute or challenge them. The example the author gave is this:

      A teenage girl goes on a trip, and her parents pray for her safe return. Here are possibilities of what could happen, and typical responses.
      She returns home safely. “Thank God”
      She gets hurt in an accident, or becomes ill, but survives. “Thank God it wasn’t worse.”
      She dies during the trip. “It must have been God’s will” or “God works in mysterious ways.”

      The author concludes, “One would have had the same possible outcomes praying to a brick.

      Of course, one could argue that praying gives you comfort, on the grounds that you have someone above looking out for you, despite the above points, what’s wrong with letting people believe in it? One point that may be worth considering is that if people trust (on faith) God will do something they ask, they may be less inclined to do things for themselves, or take needed actions. Examples are people who don’t take themselves or even their children to the doctor when sick, believing that God will heal them.

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  7. cath8r says:

    The verses in the Bible concerning prayer are very specific and unambiguous. If people are supposed to be able to take John 3:16 at face-value, then all the verses concerning prayer should also have that same status, right?

    If prayer actually worked as stated in the Bible, you would think that every single disease known to man would have been prayed into extinction long ago. Not only that, but you would physically experience differences between “believers” and those of us who actually know the difference between fairy tales and truth. You would see believers living healthier lives; they would not need insurance or doctors and they would not experience tragedies that us “heathens” experience. Laws of physics and probability would be violated regularly as the believers’ prayers were being answered.

    What you see in the real world is, prayer holds no more weight than walking under a ladder or breaking a mirror. Believers do not live longer than the rest of us. They suffer from the same ailments and genetic defects that the rest of the world experiences. There are no “answered prayers” without coincidence. A simple example is this: you pray for a mustard stain to be removed from your favorite shirt. Then you use detergent on it and throw it in the washing machine. The stain is gone….prayer answered! If you prayed over the shirt and the stain vanished before your eyes, without any additional effort from you, then THAT would be an answered prayer. When you throw it in the washer (like us heathens do), you can’t say divine intervention was involved. My stains go away and I laugh at the thought of prayer. That’s a simple example, but it can be applied to anything; just substitute the stained shirt and washing machine for anything else (a cancer patient and chemotherapy, etc.). No prayers are answered without “outside help,” which means they really aren’t answered prayers at all.

    Prayer is not some kind of telepathic, special communication with some being in outer space. It’s superstition and it has zero effect on life, period. It does NOTHING. You are talking to yourself, and answering yourself in return. Nothing more. Prove me wrong: 1 million believers can form a prayer circle (that should guarantee that there are at least some true believers in the group). Then pray that God cures all cancer victims tonight, erasing all forms of cancer from humanity forever. I can already tell you that this prayer, or any like it will NEVER be answered. Believers will do some serious dancing to explain why it’s not answered but the bible states very clearly that it WILL be answered. That’s a contradiction and solid proof that prayer does not work.

  8. Vincent says:

    you keep mentioning faith as condition for a prayer to be answered but then how can you measure ones faith? truly, only God can and he Has over time and several answered prayers of those with great faith.

    • It is the Bible that mentions faith as a condition for prayer to be answered.
      What prayers “of those with great faith” has God answered? Can you prove that the outcome wouldn’t have come about anyway without prayer?

      Can you show a case where there is no room for doubt – an amputated limb restored for example; or a loved one resurrected after having been dead for a week or more? Both of these situations are possible according to the words in the Bible.

      • So where did the idea that one has to have great faith come from? Jesus said that your faith had to be no larger than the size of a mustard seed, remember?! The fact of the matter is that there is no such thing as an answered prayer! As someone once said if prayer works then why are there doctors?

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