The words associated with “prayer(s)”, “pray”, and “praying” occur nearly 500 times in the bible, including the Old and New Testaments. The scriptures teach us that prayer is very powerful and important to God for His people, the people that love and fear Him and keep His commandments. Prayer is the way we communicate to the Almighty God. Its our direct path to Him through our Savior Jesus as stated in Ephesians 2:18, “For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.” God gladly answers prayers of those that do His will and obey His instructions according to His will – 1 John 3:22. The bible instructs us to pray everywhere without anger as explained in 1 Timothy 2:8, “I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling.” We are to continue praying earnestly with all thanksgiving – Colossians 4:2. It is God’s will through His Son Jesus that we pray to Him without ceasing as stated in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.” If we repent and seek God with all our heart, He will hear our prayers as we read in Jeremiah 29:11-13, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” God tells us we should humble ourselves and seek Him by turning away from evil ways. If we do this, He will hear us and be alert to our prayers as stated in 2 Chronicles 7:14-15, “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayer that is made in this place.”
Our prayers are to be in the Spirit and should also include supplication for other saints – Ephesians 6:18, Romans 12:12-13. God’s word tells us that the Spirit intercedes during our weakness according to His will where we are so burdened to the point that we do not know what to pray for. The Spirit utters groanings on our behalf that cannot be put into words as stated in Romans 8:26-27, “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. Jesus teaches us that if we believe our prayers will be answered according to His will and glorification, they will be answered – John 14:13-14. Jesus explains in Matthew 21:22, “And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” We are to pray with faith while removing all doubts. Praying in strong faith will bear much fruit – John 15:7-8. Praying with confidence according to His will strengthens our faith of believing that our prayers will be answered as we read in 1 John 5:14-15, “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.” If we pray without faith, we are like a sea wave tossed about by the wind as we read in James 1:5-6, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.” If we are nervous or anxious, this can hinder our prayers by allowing doubt to creep in – Philippians 4:6-7. Jesus taught us the importance of steadfast prayer by going to a mountain alone and praying all night to God the Father – Luke 6:12. Jesus also teaches us the importance and power of praying together with two or more saints as explained in Matthew 18:19-20, “Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”
Jesus teaches us the Lord’s Prayer and how we should pray. We are to pray in secret to our Father in heaven who will openly reward us we read in Matthew 6:6-13, “…when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” Jesus teaches us that our Father in heaven will give us much better gifts in the Spirit if we ask Him compared to our earthly father as stated in Luke 11:11-13, “What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Paul and Silas, during their ministry of spreading the gospel, were cast into prison but were saved by praying and singing to God. God had caused a great earthquake to open the prison gates that freed them as we read in Acts 16:25-26, “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened.”
God delights in the prayers of the righteous as stated in Proverbs 15:8, “…the prayer of the upright is His delight.” The bible tells us in James 5:16, “…The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” Many times, we underestimate the awesome power of prayer for those who love Him and do His will. God answered Elijah’s prayer of controlling the weather by causing it not to rain on the land for 3.5 years where God would be glorified. Later, God answered Elijah’s prayer again for it to rain again on the land as we read in James 5:17-18, “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.” Peter, a disciple of Jesus, was able to bring a dead woman named Tabitha back to life by kneeling down and praying – Acts 9:36-41. Another example is when King Herod had killed James, the brother of John, with the sword because it pleased the Jews to reject the preaching of the gospel. Peter was also cast into prison by Herod to suffer the same fate. However, the church had been in constant prayer for Peter where he was rescued by the Lord’s angel as explained in Acts 12:5-11, “So Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church. Now when Herod was about to bring him out, on that very night, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries before the door were guarding the prison. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, ‘Get up quickly.’ And the chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, ‘Dress yourself and put on your sandals.’ And he did so. And he said to him, ‘Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.’ And he went out and followed him. He did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and the second guard, they came to the iron gate leading into the city. It opened for them of its own accord, and they went out and went along one street, and immediately the angel left him. When Peter came to himself, he said, ‘Now I am sure that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.’ ” Jesus heals a boy who was both deaf and dumb, possessed by an unclean spirit, and teaches His disciples about the power of prayer and fasting because of their lack of faith or unbelief where this particular unclean spirit can only be driven out by prayer and fasting as stated in Mark 9:29, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.”
Even when we think our prayers are not getting answered, God moves in mysterious ways. His ways are above ours and He knows what is best for us. Sometimes our answered prayers are delayed by evil forces as with the prophet Daniel, as it took 21 days as we read in Daniel 10:12-14, “Then he said to me, “Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, and came to make you understand what is to happen to your people in the latter days. For the vision is for days yet to come.” God does NOT answer prayers that are NOT part of His will. If your prayers are for your own prideful and selfish pleasures, then they will go unanswered as we read in James 4:3, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” If we walk in darkness and do not follow God’s word and commandments, then our prayers are an abomination to God – Proverbs 28:9. Jesus teaches of how NOT to pray as in Matthew 6:5, “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.” Also, we must forgive others and have love for one another in order for our prayers to not be hindered. God will not forgive us unless we forgive others our trespasses as we read in Mark 11:24-25, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” The bible tells the elders of the church to lay hands on and pray for the sick to be healed and to confess our sins one to another in prayer as explained in James 5:13-16, “Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed.”
We know that nothing is impossible for God and that all things work together for good that love Him according to His will – Luke 1:37, Romans 8:28. Let us have peace in knowing that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us – Philippians 4:13. We have true salvation and a direct communication path to God as we read in 1 Timothy 2:5, “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus.”
Do you know where you will spend eternity after you die on earth? Will Jesus be your Lord and Savior or your eternal judge – John 3:15-21, Romans 2:16, 2 Timothy 4:1? Jesus says He is the narrow gate to heaven where it is difficult to find and only a few will enter by it where many will enter the easy, wide and broad gate that leads to Hell and destruction – Matthew 7:13-14. Will you experience the second eternal death (spiritual death) – Revelation 2:11, Revelation 20:6, Revelation 21:8? Do you know for sure that you are written in the eternal Lamb’s Book of Life – Revelation 3:5, Revelation 20:12-15? The place called Hell is NOT a myth and is very real and an extremely scary place – Watch this Video!
Do you need Prayer?
Watch this inspiring video sermon by Greg Laurie – The Importance of Prayer in the Life of the Believer.
Watch this inspiring video by Lion of Judah – The Power of Prayer – God Is With You In The Battle.