Roberto entertains discussion about prayer engaging the authority of the believer and the power that we have as Christians to affect the environment that we inhabit, the Church, and to affect God Himself and His heart.
Roberto questions Phil, "Do you think we can change the will of God?" The biblical illustration is raised of Moses, who heard God say that He wanted to destroy the children of Israel because of their disobedience. Moses interceded for his people, and God changed His mind. The question is posed, "Is God simply being rhetorical here, or can we really change God's mind, plans and actions?
Phil responds that he approaches this question in a couple of different ways and expands on both the prescriptive and descriptive part of God's will. He introduces a term that we don't use much anymore, which is "conscriptive." Phil explains its meaning as God giving us His mind, "the mind of Christ," so that we can pray with importunity the very heart of God himself.
Roberto states, "We always underestimate the complexity of God's dealings with His people and humankind as a whole ... He always seems to be about more than we give Him credit for in these processes." Phil quotes Walter Wink, "History belongs to the intercessors."