Luke 18:1 GNB Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to teach them that they should always pray and never become discouraged.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-17 CEV Always be joyful (17) and never stop praying.
Today, we are going to begin to look at how to pray for or about specific things in our lives. We are going to see what the Word of God says about those things and how we should pray about them.
Praying for the Lost
There is one fact that we must establish first in answering this question.
- Salvation has already been purchased for all mankind and forgiveness awaits all who will receive it.
Hebrews 10:10-14 NKJV By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (11) And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. (12) But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, (13) from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool. (14) For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.
The Bible teaches us that Jesus paid the price once for all mankind. He purchased our salvation so the work of redemption has been completed.
Colossians 1:13-14 NKJV He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, (14) in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
Colossians 1:14 NLT who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins.
Ephesians 1:7 NLT He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.
The price has been paid for all and forgiveness is available for all so then why is everyone not saved?
- Salvation and forgiveness must be received.
So, for us to pray prayers such as, “Lord save so and so…” are unscriptural because the work of salvation is complete and in God’s heart and mind it is established and mankind just needs to receive what God has already done.
Romans 10:13-15 NLT For “Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved.” (14) But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? (15) And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”
Notice the scripture says that everyone that calls on the Name of the Lord will be saved. Paul also gives us the progression that happens in everyone’s life that receives salvation or the New Birth:
- They call on Him because they believe in Him.
- They believe in Him because they have heard about Him.
- They hear because someone tells them.
- People go and tell them because they are sent.
The word “sent” in verse 15 is the word we get “apostle” from. It just means that this is one who is sent by God to proclaim the truth to people. This is the assignment on everyone who is a Christian. We are all to be available for the Lord to use in telling the Gospel or good news.
That means that all of us who are believers today are believers because someone was sent to us to tell us the Good News of the Gospel.
- People get sent because we pray for them to be sent.
Matthew 9:35-38 NKJV Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. (36) But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. (37) Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. (38) Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”
We work with God in asking Him to send forth laborers into the harvest and He does the sending. The laborers do the preaching and start the process.
Someone might say, “Well, if the Lord wants to send forth laborers into the harvest, why doesn’t He just send them?” But God cannot do any more on earth than what we permit Him to do. We allow God to move in our lives and in the earth by obeying His Word and by praying.
It is still up to the person to receive God’s free gift but at least they shall have heard. God knows exactly the right person who can reach your unsaved loved one and can influence them for the Lord.
- You can also pray that God will pour out His goodness in their lives so that it will bring them to a place of repentance.
Romans 2:4 NKJV Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
- You can also pray for their supernatural protection especially if they are involved in activities that could endanger them.
- We can also break the power of the devil over them because it is he that is blinding their minds to the Gospel.
2 Corinthians 4:3-4 NLT If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. (4) Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.
The correct way to pray for lost friends or loved ones is like this:
Lord, I ask You, the Lord of the Harvest, to send forth perfect laborers into the life of my loved one to share the Good News of the Gospel. Let them say it in a special way so that they will listen and understand it. I believe that they will not be able to resist the drawing of your Spirit as you bring them to repentance by overwhelming them with your goodness and love. I thank You for it, in Jesus’ Name.
Praying for Believers
I believe that most Born Again believers genuinely want to follow after the things of God and His direction for their lives.
Sometimes the enemy is able to come in and bring confusion and questions because they do not know what they are supposed to be doing.
If people do not know what to do, they always revert to do what they do know to do. (Including Christians)
1 John 1:7 NKJV But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Ephesians 5:8 NKJV For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light
The thing that we see in this is that light is extremely important for any of us to be successful as Christians.
- Every believer needs more light or revelation from God’s Word for us to grow and our lives to be different and better.
- It is still the individual’s choice to walk in the light they receive.
Paul outlined the prayers that we can pray for believers (and for ourselves) in the following epistles:
Ephesians 1:15-23 NKJV Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, (16) do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: (17) that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, (18) the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, (19) and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power (20) which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, (21) far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. (22) And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, (23) which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.
Ephesians 3:14-19 NKJV For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, (15) from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, (16) that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, (17) that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, (18) may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— (19) to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Colossians 1:9-12 NKJV For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; (10) that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; (11) strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; (12) giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.