In Mark 11:22-25 Jesus gives the key principles for 'whosoever' to receive from God and to remove the mountains in their way.
*(1) GENERAL FAITH: 'Have faith in God' (v22)
We must look to God to move the mountain (problem). We must transfer our trust from our own ability to God's. We speak His word and act in obedience but His is the power. He is the Source of blessings and miracles.
We must look away from ourselves and look to God to bring it to pass.
We speak to the mountain but only God has the power to remove it.
*(2) FORGIVE: For our faith to work we must walk in love and forgiveness: 'When you stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your sins.' (v25). Our faith can only work when we are in fellowship with God and this is broken when we don't forgive.
*(3) BELIEVE YOU RECEIVE: 'Therefore I say to you, Whatever things you desire, when ye pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them' (Mark 11:23)
Our faith must be specific. We must focus on receiving specific things and promises from God. We are to believe we receive the promise (the answer) when we pray.
The logical foundation for believing this way is in 1John 5:14,15 :
'this is the confidence we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us: and if we know that He hears us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.'
We need full confidence in 3 areas in order to believe we receive when we pray:
(1) Confidence that what we ask IS GOD'S WILL.
This comes from knowing God has promised it in His Word (which is His Will for all believers) or specifically to us by His Spirit.
(2) Confidence that GOD HEARS US when we pray according to His will. (consider 1Peter 3:12, 2Cor 5:21)
(3) Confidence that He is the God of the IMMEDIATE RESPONSE, so that we can know that we HAVE the answer when we pray. (Daniel 10:12; James 1:5; Rom 8:32) If we're confident that it's His will, that He hears us and sends the answer immediately, then we can believe we receive when we pray.
We must have the substance of it first in our faith before it is seen (Hebrews 11:1). We receive it at once in our spirit and then it's a matter of time before we 'have it' manifested in the natural realm.
To receive from God pray a PRAYER OF FAITH:
(1) MEDITATE ON HIS PROMISE until you know it is His Will for you.
'Father I come to You in the Name of Jesus to ask You for...
Your Word says....
Right now based on your word I BELIEVE I RECEIVE....
Thank you Lord for hearing my prayer and sending the answer. Amen.'
*(4) WORDS-CONFESS the ANSWER: 'Truly I say to you, That whosoever shall SAY unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be cast into the sea; and shall not (permit) doubt (to enter) in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he SAYS shall come to pass; HE SHALL HAVE WHATSOEVER HE SAYS.' (Mark 11:23).
The process of receiving the answer isn't completed when we've prayed the prayer of faith and received the word. We have it in our spirit but it must be brought forth into our experience. Believing we receive is a spiritual transaction. Usually nothing seems to change immediately in the natural. Our circumstances seem to still stand in the way like a mountain. The key now is in the WORDS we speak.
In this we're in the image of God Who brought forth what was in His Spirit (Creation) into the natural by speaking words. By faith-filled words He removed the contradictory mountain of darkness saying 'let there be light' and 'there was light.' (Gen 1:3) He is the God: 'who calls those things which be not as though they were.' (Rom 4:17). If He spoke out what He saw He'd have just created more darkness. But He spoke LIFE and LIGHT rather than DARKNESS and DEATH.
We too bring forth either life and death, good or bad by the words we speak.
'A man's belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they who love it shall eat the fruit thereof (life or death).' (Prov 18:20). God has made us so that we bring forth (make manifest) by our words what we believe in our hearts. (Matthew 12:33-37) Thus our hearts get filled with good or bad and then we speak that out in words we believe and they come to pass. What we believe in our heart and confess with our mouth locates us and controls the course of our life. Our tongue is the rudder for the ship of our life (James 3:2-5). Stormy winds (problems, offences, oppositions, afflictions) will blow to push us off course. If our hand is off the rudder it will turn with the wind causing shipwreck. If we control the rudder by speaking the word, declaring the end-result we will come through the storm on course for our desired destination.
We first receive the word, by believing it in our heart.
Then by speaking the word we bring forth the manifestation:
'The word is nigh thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, so that if you shalt confess (the word) with thy mouth ... and believe (the word) in your heart ...you shall be saved. For with the heart man believes (the word) unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession (of the word) is made unto salvation (the manifestation)' (Romans 10:8-10)
Likewise Jesus said we could operate in this God-kind of faith saying:
'Truly I say to you, That whosoever shall SAY unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be cast into the sea; and shall not (permit) doubt (to enter) in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he SAYS shall come to pass; HE SHALL HAVE WHATSOEVER HE SAYS.' (Mark 11:23)
The final results depend as much on what you SAY as what you PRAY, for we will 'have what we SAY' if we believe the words we speak will come to pass. What we see and feel can cause us to allow unbelief into our heart and we speak failure: 'It didn't work, God didn't hear me, I received nothing.' Or we can protect our heart with God's promises and take our stand, that we have believed we have received when we prayed. By faith we declare the promise as fulfilled in the face of contradictory circumstances.
There's a time period between receiving the promise and seeing it fulfilled (the time between sowing and reaping) In this time we bring the answer forth by FAITH and PATIENCE, speaking God's Word in the face of the mountain (contradictory circumstances) After receiving by faith we're to walk and talk by faith until we see the promise fulfilled. See Hebrews 4:14; 6:11,12; 10:23,35,36.
Scripture gives many illustrations of this principle:
(1) JESUS in death, believed and declared his resurrection. (Ps 116:10; 2Cor 4:13). We are to have the same spirit of faith that believes and speaks the word.
(2) ABRAHAM (our father in faith) did this as our example. (Rom 4:17-24) calling himself 'father of many nations' and glorifying God before seeing any evidence of a son.
(3) ELIJAH Some think you can only speak the positive when you see the positive. But in 1Kings 17 and 18 Elijah is in unfavorable circumstances (lack of water). He had believed and had spoke out a word from God that there'd be no rain and he had what he said. But now God had spoken a word to him that rain was on it's way. Now before there was any sign of rain he said to Ahab: 'Get up, for there is a sound of abundance of rain.' (1Kings 18:41). He received rain in his spirit (by God's word to him) and spoke it out before there was any evidence in the natural. Why?- His faith and words were to be the channel by which God sent the answer (rain)
Elijah remained in intercession.(v42) and told his servant to look 6 times for signs of rain, but each time there was nothing. Elijah contined to believe and speak rain in the face of the mountain of drought. (v43) But the 7th time, the servant saw a little cloud arise out of the sea. Then Elijah told Ahab there would be a great storm of rain (v44) and it came to pass. (v45) Elijah patiently believed and confessed the word he'd received from God until it removed the mountain and brought forth the manifestation.
(4) ELISHA received and declared God's word that a childless women would have a son against all evidence and it happened. (2Kings 4:16,17) She received this promise of a son so when he died (v20,32) she believed he would live and kept saying about him: 'it is well.' (v23,26) even though she was deeply distressed by events. (v27) She got what she said! (v35-37)
(5) A WOMAN with blood constantly issuing out of her, kept saying: 'when I touch Jesus I'll be made well' and she was healed. (Mark 5:28,34)
(6) JESUS knowing Jairus' daughter was dead by faith spoke about her as alive. (Luke 8:50,52) See also John 11:4,11-14. Using the word 'sleep' denoted a temporary condition, whereas death has a note of finality. He chose words to best express and release His faith and he got what he said.
(7) MARY received the word of a supernatural birth (v38) when the angel told her: 'no word of God is without the power to fulfil itself' (Luke 1:37) She believed (v45) and confessed her faith in a song (v46-) in 9 months it was fulfilled (manifested). We receive the word as a seed when we believe. For a time it's hidden in the womb (or ground) of our heart. As we believe and confess it (feed and water it) it grows until it comes forth into visibility (above ground).
(8) ZACCHEUS did not believe the word of a supernatural birth and so was made dumb so that his bad confession would not spoil the manifestation. (Luke1:20)
(9) THE 12 SPIES (Numbers13:27-33) God had given the Israelites the land of promise. Likewise He has given us a land of promises. 12 spies were sent out to search the land. They saw the promise but also the problems (giants) standing in their way. In order to live in the land they had to remove the giants. 10 of the spies gave an EVIL REPORT of unbelief saying 'we can't enter in' =and they got what they said. But Joshua and Caleb gave a GOOD REPORT of faith: 'we can possess it, it's ours.' They too got what they said. The 10 are a picture of those who initially believe the promise but in the face of giant problems, recoil into unbelief and speak a negative report and so fail to enjoy what God had given them. The 2 are those who believe the promise and in the face of the mountain patiently hold fast to a good report (confession) For these, God's power will remove the mountains and giants and they will possess and live in the land of fulfilled promises.
(10) JERICHO Marching around Jericho for a week they had to be silent until the final shout. This prevented them from speaking unbelief. When at last it was time they all released their faith in a united shout.
It may seem strange to confess the positive in the face of the negative but this is exactly what FAITH is about. It deals with unfelt and unseen realities of God. (Hebrews 11:1). It believes that they are real and present and calls them forth into manifestation. If they were visible already you wouldn't need faith !