Prayer
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PRAYER

 

1. How to pray:

                Lk.11:1-4                Lord, teach us to pray...when ye pray, say, Our Father which art in Heaven... (See also Mat.6:9-13)

A. Praise & thank the Lord before petitioning Him:

                Psa.95:2  Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving

                Psa.100:4                Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, & into His courts with praise: be thankful...& bless His name

                Phi.4:6    With thanksgiving let your requests be made known

B. If you have the gift of tongues, pray & praise in it:

                1Cor.14:2,4             He that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh...unto God (&) edifieth himself

                Rom.8:26,27           The Spirit...maketh intercession for us with groanings

                Eph.6:18 Praying always with...supplication in the Spirit

                Jude 20   Building up your...faith, praying in the Holy Ghost

                1Cor.14:39              Forbid not to speak with tongues

C. Be specific & ask for what you need:

                1Ki.3:5,9,10            [God told Solomon,] Ask what I shall give thee

                Mat.7:7,8                Ask, & it shall be given you; seek, & ye shall find

                Mat.21:22               Whatsoever ye ask in prayer...ye shall receive

                Jn.16:24  Ask, & ye shall receive, that your joy may be full

                Phi.4:6    Let your requests be made known unto God

                Jam.4:2b Ye have not, because ye ask not

D. Pray to the Father in Jesus' name:

                Jn.14:13,14             Whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do

                Jn.16:23  Whatsoever ye...ask Father in My name, He will give

                (See also Jn.15:16b; 16:26; Eph.2:18.)

E. Prayer also includes you listening to God:

                1Sam.3:9,10            If He call thee...say, "Speak, Lord; for Thy servant heareth"

                Gen.24:63               Isaac went out to meditate in the field at eventide

                Num.9:8  Stand still, & I will hear what the Lord will command

                Psa.4:3,4 Lord will hear...commune with your heart...& be still

                Psa.46:10                Be still, & know that I am God

                (See also Eccl.5:1; Zeph.1:7; Zech.2:13.)

F. Listen by meditating on God's Word:

                Josh.1:8  Thou shalt meditate therein (the law) day & night

                Psa.1:2    In His law doth he meditate day & night

                Psa.119:148            [Before] the night watches...I meditate in Thy Word

                1Tim.4:15               Meditate on these things; give thyself wholly to them

G. Be diligent to pray, don't be lazy:

                Isa.64:7   There is none that calleth upon Thy name, that stirreth himself to take hold of Thee

                Dan.9:13 All this evil is come upon us: yet made we not our prayer

                Jon.1:6    What meanest thou, O sleeper? Arise, call upon God

                Lk.22:46  Why sleep ye? Rise and pray

                Lk.18:1    Men ought always to pray, & not to faint

 

2. Conditions to getting prayer answered:

A. Pray in faith:

                Mat.21:21,22          Have faith...doubt not...whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive

                Mk.11:24                When ye pray, believe that ye receive & ye shall have

                Rom.4:21                Being fully persuaded that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform

                Heb.11:6 He that cometh to God must believe that He is

                Jam.1:5-7                Let him ask in faith, nothing wavering

                (See also Mat.17:18-20; Lk.7:1-10.)

B. Obey God & do His will:

                Jn.9:31    If any man...doeth God's will, him He heareth

                Jn.15:7    If ye abide in Me, & My Words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, & it shall be done unto you

                1Jn.3:22  We ask, we receive, because we keep His (commands)

                (See also Isa.58:6-9a)

C. Submit yourself to God & pray according to His will:

                Psa.143:10              Teach me to do Thy will; for Thou art my God

                Mat.6:10 Thy will be done in earth, as it is in Heaven

                Lk.22:42  Nevertheless not My will, but Thine (God's), be done

                Jn.5:30    [Jesus:] I seek not Mine Own will, but will of (God)

                1Jn.5:14  If we ask anything according to His will, He heareth

D. Pray humbly:

                Dan.9:18b              We do not present our supplications...(because of) our righteousnesses, but for Thy great mercies

                Lk.18:10-14            The publican (said), God be merciful to me a sinner

                Jam.4:6   God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble

 

3. Prayer promises:

                2Pet.1:4  Are given unto us exceeding great & precious promises

A. Remind God of His promises when praying:

                Gen.32:6-12            Jacob was greatly afraid & distressed [& prayed, reminding God of His promises of protection]

                Neh.1:4-11             [Nehemiah prayed:] Remember...the word that Thou commandest Thy servant Moses

B. Some promises to claim in prayer:

                Psa.37:4,5               Delight thyself in Lord: & He shall give thee desires

                Isa.65:24 Before they call, I will answer; & while they are yet speaking, I will hear

                Jer.33:3   Call unto Me, & I will answer thee & shew thee great & mighty things

                Jn.15:7    Ask what ye will, & it shall be done unto you

                Jn.15:16b                Whatsoever ye ask in My name...[God will] give it

                Psa.81:10b             Open thy mouth wide, & I will fill it

C. The Lord promises to hear prayer:

                2Sam.22:7               In my distress I called...He did hear my voice

                Psa.34:15,17           The righteous cry, & the Lord heareth

                Psa.72:12                He shall deliver the needy when he crieth

                Psa.91:15                He shall call upon Me, & I will answer him

D. God's blessings for those who seek Him:

                2Chr.26:5                As long as he sought the Lord, God made him prosper

                2Chr.31:21              He (sought God) with all his heart, & prospered

 

4. How not to pray:

A. Don't be disobedient:

                Deut.1:43,45          Ye would not hear, but rebelled against (Word) of the Lord...the Lord would not hearken to your voice

                Deut.3:23-27          [Moses' request to enter Canaan denied.--Num.20:12]

                1Sam.28:5,6            When Saul enquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not [See the reason in 1Sam.28:15-19]

                Isa.1:15   When ye make many prayers, I will not hear

                Mic.3:4   Then shall they cry unto the Lord, but He will not hear... they have behaved themselves ill (See also 1Sam.13:8-14 & 14:37; Hos.5;6.)

B. Don't be disbelieving:

                Job 9:16  If I called, & He answered me; yet would I not believe He had hearkened unto my voice

                Mat.17:19,20a        Why could not we cast him out? Because of your unbelief

                Heb.11:6 Without faith is it impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is

C. Don't harbour unrepented sin in your heart:

                Psa.66:18,19           If I regard iniquity in my heart, Lord will not hear

                Isa.59:1,2                Your sins have hid His face...that He will not hear

                Jam.5:16 Confess your faults...& pray one for another

D. Don't doubt & disobey the Word:

                Pro.1:24-28             Then shall they call upon Me, but I will not answer

                Pro.28:9  He that turneth ear...his prayer shall be abomination

                Zech.7:12,13          Therefore...they cried, & I would not hear

                Jam.1:5-7                Let not that man [who doubts] think he shall receive anything of the Lord

E. Don't hold resentment or "oughts" in your heart:

                Mk.11:25                When ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought

F. Don't have selfish motives:

                Jam.4:3   Ye ask, & receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts

                Deut.23:4,5            They hired against thee Balaam...to curse thee. [But] the Lord would not hearken unto Balaam

G. Don't pray in pride, but sincerely & humbly:

                Mat.6:5,6                Not be as hypocrites (who) love to pray [publicly]

                Lk.18:10-14            God, I thank Thee, that I am not as other men are

H. Don't pray long, repetitive prayers:

                Eccl.5:2   God is in Heaven...let thy words be few

                Mat.6:7,8                When ye pray, use not vain repetitions

                Mat.23:14               Woe unto you (who) for a pretence make long prayer

                Josh.7:6,10             [God told Joshua to stop praying & get up]

I. What happens when we don't pray:

                Jam.4:2   Ye have not, because ye ask not

                (See also Isa.64:7)

 

5. Private prayer & united prayer with others:

A. Private prayer:

                Mat.6:6   When thou prayest, enter into thy closet...in secret

                Mk.1:35  He...departed into a solitary place, & there prayed

                Mk.6:46  He sent them away, He departed to a mountain to pray

                Lk.5:16    He withdrew Himself into the wilderness, & prayed

B. United prayer:

                Mat.18:19,20          Where two or three are gathered together in My name

                Acts 1:13-15          These all [120 people] continued with one accord in prayer...in an upper room

                Acts 4:23-31          [After a beating, Peter & John held a prayer meeting]

                Acts 12:12             House of Mary...many were gathered together praying

C. "Watching" in prayer:

                1Sam.15:11             It grieved Samuel; & he cried unto the Lord all night

                Mat.26:40,41          Could ye not watch with Me one hour? Watch & pray

                Lk.6:12    He (Jesus) continued all night in prayer to God

                Acts 12:5               Peter was kept in prison...prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him

                Eph.6:18 Praying always...& watching thereunto

 

6. When to pray:

A. Be in a constant attitude of prayer:

                1Chr.16:11              Seek the Lord...seek His face continually

                Pro.3:6    In all thy ways acknowledge Him, & He shall direct

                Lk.18:1    Men ought always to pray

                Lk.21:36a                Watch ye therefore, & pray always

                1Thes.5:17             Pray without ceasing (See also Eph.6:18)

B. Pray in time of special need:

                Psa.50:15                Call upon Me in the day of trouble

                Psa.27:8  When Thou saidst, "Seek ye My face"

                Psa.107:19              They cry unto the Lord in their trouble, & He saveth

                Heb.4:16 Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace that we may...find...help in time of need

                Jam.5:13 Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray

                (See also 2Chr.14:11,12; Psa.34:4,6.)

C. Morning prayer:

                Psa.5:3    In the morning will I direct my prayer unto Thee

                Psa.63:1  O God, Thou art my God; early will I seek Thee

                Psa.119:147            I [rose before] the dawning of the morning, & cried

                Pro.8:17  Those that seek Me early shall find Me

                Mk.1:35  In the morning, rising up before day, He...prayed

D. Evening prayer:

                Mk.6:46,47             (Jesus) departed to mountain to pray...even was come

                Gen.24:63               Isaac went out to meditate in the field at eventide

                Psa.55:17                Evening, & morning, & at noon, will I pray

                Dan.6:10 Daniel...kneeled three times a day, & prayed

E. Prayer in the night:

                Lam.2:19 Arise, cry out in the night...pour out thine heart like water before the face of the Lord

                Psa.42:8  In the night His song shall be with me, & my prayer

                Psa.63:5b,6            When I...meditate on Thee in the night watches

                Isa.26:9a With my soul have I desired Thee in the night

                Lk.6:12    (Jesus) continued all night in prayer to God

                Acts 16:25             At midnight Paul & Silas prayed, & sang praises

                (See also Psa.4:4; 119:55,62.)

 

7. Wholehearted desperate prayer:

A. Stir yourself up; call on God wholeheartedly:

                1Sam.15:11,16        It grieved Samuel; & he cried unto the Lord all night

                Isa.64:7a None...stirreth up himself to take hold of Thee

                Jer.29:13 Ye shall seek Me, & find Me, when ye search for Me with all your heart (See also Deut.4:29)

                Lam.2:19 Arise, cry out...pour out thine heart like water

                Lk.22:44  Being in an agony, He (Jesus) prayed more earnestly

                Heb.4:16 Let us therefore come boldly...in time of need

                Heb.5:7   (Jesus) offered up prayers...with strong crying & tears

                Jam.5:16b               Effectual fervent prayer...availeth much

                (See Psa.61:1,2; 119:10.)

B. Praying fervently & desperately for others:

                Rom.15:30,31         Strive (agonise) together with me in our prayers to God

                Col.4:12  Epaphrus...always labouring fervently for you in prayers

C. Don't give up; be persistent:

                Gen.18:23-32          [Abraham repeatedly asks God to spare Sodom for the sake of the righteous. God agrees, if there are 10]

                Gen.32:24-28          [Jacob refuses to let angel go until he blesses him]

                Lk.11:5-10              Because of his importunity (insistence) he will give

                Lk.18:1-8a              [Widow & unjust judge] Lest by her continual coming

                Rom.12:12              Continuing instant (steadfast, persevering) in prayer

                Eph.6:18 Praying always...watching thereunto with perseverance

                Jam.5:16b-18          The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man (See 1Ki.18:2,41-45 )

D. Challenge God to keep His Word & answer prayer:

                2Ki.2:14  [Elisha challenges:] "Where is the God of Elijah?"

                Isa.45:11b              Concerning the work of My hands command ye Me

                (See also Exo.32:11-14)

E. Sometimes you can change God's mind through prayer:

                Gen.19:17-21          I will not overthrow this city (Zoar), for the which thou hast spoken

                Exo.32:9-14            Moses besought the Lord...& the Lord repented of the evil which He [had] thought to do

                2Ki.20:1-6               [King Hezekiah was told he would die, but when he prayed, God changed His mind & healed him]

                Amos 7:1-6            The Lord repented for this: This also shall not be

                Jon.3:4-10              [Nineveh cried out & repented, so God spared it]

F. Repeating your desperate prayer:

                1Ki.18:42,43           Elijah...put his face between his knees...Go 7 times

                Mat.26:44               (Jesus) prayed the third time, saying the same words

G. Fasting & prayer:

                Ezra 8:23 So we fasted & besought our God for this: & He was intreated of us

                Joel 2:12 Turn ye to Me with all your heart, & with fasting

                Mat.17:21               This kind goeth not out but by prayer & fasting

                (See also Deut.9:9,18; Acts 13:2,3; 1Cor.7:5.)

 

8. Other points on prayer:

A. Jesus mediates & prays for us:

                Rom.8:34                Christ...Who is at the right hand of God...maketh intercession for us

                Heb.7:25 He ever liveth to make intercession for [us]

                (See also Lk.22:32; Jn.17:9.)

B. The Holy Spirit prays for us:

                Rom.8:26,27           (The Spirit) maketh intercession for the saints

C. Be thankful to the Lord for answering prayer:

                Psa.116:1,2,7          I love the Lord, because He hath heard my (prayers)

                (See also Psa.30:1-4; 66:16,17,19,20.)

D. Prayer is precious:

                Psa.141:2                Let my prayer be set before Thee as incense

                Pro.15:8b                The prayer of the upright is His delight

                Rev.5:8   Golden vials full of odours are the prayers of saints (See also Rev.8:3)

E. Giving thanks before eating:

                1Sam.9:13               People will not eat till he...bless the sacrifice

                Mat.14:19               Looking up to Heaven, He blessed & brake...the loaves

                Mat.26:26               Jesus took bread, & blessed it, & brake it, & gave

                Mk.8:6    He (Jesus) took the seven loaves, & gave thanks

                Acts 27:35             He (Paul) took bread, & gave thanks to God

                1Tim.4:3-5              [Food] sanctified (cleansed) by prayer

 

9. Ways God answers prayer:

A. Answer to prayer greater than request:

                1Ki.3:7-14               [Solomon prayed for wisdom & God granted him much more]

                Eph.3:20 Able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask

                Acts 12:1-16          [Church prayed for Peter, but not quite expecting his miraculous release from prison (vs.15,16)]

B. Answer to prayer delayed (It tries our faith):

                Job 30:20                [Job's prayer not answered immediately]

                Psa.40:1  I waited patiently for the Lord, & He...heard my cry

                Jer.42:4,7                [Jeremiah's prayer answered 10 days after he prayed]

                Lam.3:25,26            The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh Him (See also Psa.62:1)

                Dan.10:2,12,13       [The answer to Daniel's prayer was delayed for 21 days]

                Lk.18:7,8 [Answer] His elect...though He bear long with them

                Heb.10:36               Patience...after ye have done will of God, receive

                Rev.6:10,11            How long, O Lord? [Answer:] Rest yet a little season

C. Answer to prayer different from request:

                Deut.3:23-27          [Moses allowed to view the promised land, not enter]

                Jn.11:1-3,6              [Jesus is asked to heal Lazarus, but lets him die, then resurrects him] (See Jn.11:14,15,32,37,43-45)

                2Cor.12:7-9            [Paul prays for healing; instead is given grace to bear his affliction]

                (See also 2Ki.5:9-13)

D. Beware about insisting that God grant your request:

                Psa.106:15              He gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul

                (See 1Sam.8:4-22; 12:1,13,16-19 re: asking for a king)