VI. THE PRAYER OF AUTHORITY
All prayers in ascension are prayers of authority. We know that prayer in ascension is a command to God. Our prayer is not begging but commanding. You all remember that in Isaiah 45:11, God says, “Command ye me.” Sometimes this commanding is a direct command to God, and sometimes it is an indirect command to the environment. Examples are: Moses standing on the shore of the Red Sea commanding the water to be divided, the Lord Jesus in the boat commanding the wind and the sea to be still, and the Lord commanding sickness to leave men. If you have learned to pray by standing in the realm of ascension, you can even command poverty to leave you. You are not there imploring, asking for God’s mercy and visitation just like a beggar asking men for a little money. If you have touched the heavenly position with its authority, you can even say, “I command the poverty to depart from me.” This is not our imagination. Some definitely have had such an experience.
In the Bible, on the one hand, it says that we should pray without ceasing, but on the other hand, it does not show us that answers to many prayers will be forthcoming according to what people expect. There have been occasions when brothers and sisters have come to me and immediately asked me to pray for them. I really did not know how to pray for them, for I did not know whether they were in heaven or on earth. Brothers and sisters, anyone who can pray conveniently does not know what prayer is. If you really know the position and the authority of prayer, then you will know that worthwhile prayer is not that easy.
Of course, God is gracious to us in all things, and He always listens to our prayer. I admit this is true. However, God also shows us that prayer is a matter of being in ascension. If you really wish to have some worthwhile prayers before God, you need to be able to give out some authoritative commands before God. Standing before God, I can tell you that in the past years in some places, as we encountered some problems in the work or in the church, we prayed this kind of commanding prayer. We expressed ourselves boldly before God, saying, “God, we cannot allow this matter.” If your position is wrong and your condition is not in the heavenly realm, such prayer would be an insult to God. But if your position is right and your state is in the heavenly sphere, then such prayer would be a real pleasure to Him. The words you pray are equal to God’s administration; they are equivalent to executing His commands. I can testify that God answers such prayers.
It is not that when one goes out to the street and points with a stick the cars will stop; rather, it is when the traffic policeman points with his stick that everyone will stop, for he has the position and the authority. The most simple and easy prayers are these kind of commanding prayers, authoritative prayers. But in order to have such prayers, you need to acquire a position of ascension. What is a prayer of authority? It is a prayer by one who is able to give out commands by standing in the position of ascension.
Because our spiritual condition today is too low, very few among the children of God know, and fewer actually practice this kind of prayer. But if we go on properly in the Lord, we will realize that we are in the Holy Place, not the outer court. We will also realize that we are in the realm of ascension and cannot be touched by numerous things. We are together with the Lord in the realm of ascension and on the throne. Therefore, we are able to give orders and command everything according to the Lord’s will. Whatever we pray from such a position is an order, a command.
VII. THE PRAYER ON THE THRONE
When you come to the point where you have the heavenly position and the heavenly authority, and are thus able to utter forth authoritative prayers, you are one who is on the throne, standing in the ruling position together with the Lord. Just as He reigns at the right hand of God, so you also reign together with Him in the heavenly realm. At this time, your prayer is not only an authoritative prayer but also a reigning prayer. Your prayer is to rule with authority, executing God’s orders. So at this time, all your prayers become God’s administration, the execution of God’s rule. Maybe I have gone too high, but I know that if we are willing to learn, we will arrive at a place where we can utter such prayers.
In summary, there is only one position for prayer—the heavenly sphere. Once you leave this sphere you lose the position of prayer. Prayer is not only concerned with certain matters; but, much more, it is concerned with a certain position. You need to be in the heavenly sphere. Then you have the position to pray, you are able to pray with authority, and you are one sitting on the throne, uttering forth prayers of the throne.
(Lessons on Prayer, Chapter 17, by Witness Lee)