John 9:31 “We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him.“ Okay, so to be fair, that verse in context was more about the blind man that was healed reasoning with the Pharisees why Jesus was a man from God. But we still have a direct statement within the verse stating, “God does not hear sinners”. There are other verses that seem to allude to this idea.
Proverbs 15:29 states, “The LORD is far from the wicked, But He hears the prayer of the righteous.“
Psalm 34:15 states, “The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous And His ears are open to their cry.”
Psalm 66:18 states, “If I regard wickedness in my heart, The Lord will not hear;”
1 Peter 3:12 states, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”
God turned away from Saul
Pondering all of that brought the question to my mind, “Do I sin too much for God to hear my prayers?” I know for sure I do sins I shouldn’t be doing some days, but is my inconsistency of obedience to the point where God is far from me or closes his ear to me? I think about Saul who didn’t obey the Lord’s instruction that Samuel told him, and Saul lost his kingdom and God turned away from him. To my recollection God never answered Saul’s prayers after that. Saul had to turn to a medium to bring up Samuel’s soul in order to get any answers for his life.
1 Samuel 28: 15 states “15 Then Samuel said to Saul, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” And Saul answered, “I am greatly distressed; for the Philistines are waging war against me, and God has departed from me and no longer answers me, either through prophets or by dreams; therefore I have called you, that you may make known to me what I should do.”
I point out Saul’s example as one instance of God having stopped hearing someone’s prayers due to sin. It’s possible there might have been things specific to his circumstance which God saw it wasn’t worth responding to his prayers anymore. There’s no verse I can think of that specifically answers when you’re sinning too much or when you’re not obeying enough for your prayers to be heard. Perhaps those verses are just there to encourage us to be as obedient as possible.
Peace to all those who are in Christ.