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When Your Prayer Is Not Heard

Zechariah 7:13

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“‘When I called, they did not listen; so when they called, I would not listen,’ says the LORD Almighty.

Zechariah 7:13 NIV

Does it seem like God does not hear your prayers? Like they are bouncing off the ceiling? There are several reasons why that might be. But one of them concerns your obedience to what God has told you. Are you investing time in reading the Bible and listening to its words? And are you obeying God’s instructions in it?

Zechariah was a prophet to the Jewish exiles returning from Babylonian captivity. In the passage leading up to this verse, God recounted that he had told the people what he wanted from them (Zech. 7:9-10). The prophets delivered the message, but the people refused to listen to them (Zech. 7:11-12). And they suffered the consequences.

God called out to the people, sending multiple prophets to them. But they did not take his words to heart and obey them. So, when they were in trouble and called out to God for deliverance, he did not respond to them. Their disobedience closed God’s ears to their cries for help.

These words God gave Israel through Zechariah make clear the importance of listening to what God has to say to us. Not just hearing the words, but also responding to them. As James says, do not just be a hearer of the word, but also be a doer. That is who will be blessed by God (Jam. 1:22-25).

Pray in Jesus’ name (John 14:13). Pray in faith (Matt. 21:22). And pray in accordance with God’s will (1 John 5:14). But also pray from a place of obedience, hearing and obeying God’s word to you.

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Ed Jarrett

Just an old clay jar that God continues to see fit to use in his kingdom's work. I am retired, married with 2 children, and 4 grandchildren. I have followed Jesus for many years. And I love to share what He has given me from His word.

A Note to Readers

The views expressed here are solely mine and do not necessarily reflect those of any other person, group, or organization. While I believe they reflect the teachings of the Bible, I am a fallible human and subject to misunderstanding. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions about this post in the comments section below. I am always interested in your feedback.

2 thoughts on “When Your Prayer Is Not Heard – Zechariah 7:13”

  1. Has a believer already heard the call of God? Is the believer one with Jesus (1 Cor. 6:17)? I have not listened to Jesus and suffered the natural consequences of ignoring Him guiding me. But I believe he always hears me. What do you think? Are experiencing the consequences of not listening to God the same as Him not hearing us? I value your thoughts.

    • There is a real sense in which God always hears us since he is omniscient. But does he always respond to us? No, I do not believe he does. And this passage gives us at least one reason why not. Because we are not obedient to him. If I am not obedient to what he tells me in his word, why should I expect that he will respond to my prayer?


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