Why Pray? Luke 18:1 Then He [Jesus] spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, See also: 1Ti 2:8 I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting; Mat 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. The answer to the question Why Pray is simple, because Jesus said to because that is who a Christian is.
The power in Prayer: Luke 11:1 Now it
came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of
His disciples said to Him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught
his disciples." This is Bible Faith Teaching that works.
The disciples never asked Jesus to
teach them anything but Prayer. Why? First look at the life of Jesus Who
ministered in the power of the Holy Spirit by healing the multitudes when they
just touched the hem of His garment, He raised people from the dead, He walked
on water, stilled the storm and feed thousands of people with just a few fish
and loaves of bread. The disciples never walked in the power of the Spirit like
this until Pentecost came with the Holy Spirit.
Jesus equipped them to heal the sick
and cast out demons but before the baptism of the Holy Spirit they did not
function with the same power of Jesus when He walked on earth. So why did NOT
the disciples ask Jesus for this power of the Holy Spirit so they could do the
same works as Jesus did? Maybe when the disciples saw Jesus after prayer times they
sensed a real closeness that He had with the Father in an intimate relationship
and that He was equipped for any work to be done here on earth.
The disciples were powerless to cast
out a demon from a boy. Read the story in Matthew chapter 17. Jesus told them
why they were unable and there were a couple of reasons why and one was a lack
of faith and the other was: Mat 17:21 "However, this kind does not go out
except by prayer and fasting" So really what the disciples observed was
that the power of the Holy Spirit was manifested on a greater level when you
were a person of Prayer and that is why the disciples ask Jesus to teach them
Prayer not only produces more faith [Jude
1:20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying
in the Holy Spirit,] but more power to minister the Gospel for any good work.
See also: Jas 5:16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one
another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous
man avails much.
After the baptism of the Holy Spirit
in the book of Acts we will see that the disciples were men of Prayer and then
they were able to work miracles like Jesus. See: Act 6:4 "but we will give
ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word." Here are
some of the works that they did. See: Act 5:15 so that they brought the sick
out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches, that at least the
shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them. Act 19:11 Now God worked
unusual miracles by the hands of Paul, Act 19:12 so that even handkerchiefs or
aprons were brought from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and
the evil spirits went out of them.
This is how the disciples saw Jesus
praying. See: Mat 14:23 And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on
the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. Mar
6:46 And when He had sent them away, He departed to the mountain to pray. Luke
6:12 Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to
pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. Luke 9:28 Now it came to pass,
about eight days after these sayings, that He took Peter, John, and James and
went up on the mountain to pray. Fervent prayer is work and requires long hours
but the rewards are great as we can see from the example given to us by Jesus.
Look at the success that Jesus had because
of Prayer. See: Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, "Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan
has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat". Luke 22:32 "But I
have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have
returned to Me, strengthen your brethren." As we can in the Book of Acts
that Peter's faith did not fail. Jesus being a man of Prayer was able to
deliver the boy from the demon. See: Mar 9:29 So He said to them, This kind can
come out by nothing but prayer and fasting. See the success that Jesus had in
raising the dead because of Prayer. Look at: John 11:41 Then they took away the
stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes
and said, Father, I thank You that You have heard [Prayer] Me. John 11:42
"And I know that You always hear [Prayer] Me, but because of the people
who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me."
Your success in the Christian life
will be determined by the kind of Prayer life that you have. Prayer is
something that can be very effective when done alone [James 5:16] or corporate.
When Elijah prayed for it to rain, it did. See also: Act 4:31 And when they had
prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were
all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness. Act
12:5 Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God
for him by the church. Peter was set free from prison because of corporate
All of the great Christian men of
history were men of prayer. Consider: Andrew Murray, George Mueller, R A
Torrey, Charles Finney and Charles Spurgeon just to name a few.
All Christians have the ability to
Pray in the Spirit. It is simply allowing the Spirit to pray thru you. See: Rom
8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what
we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for
us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Rom 8:27 Now He who searches the
hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for
the saints according to the will of God. When we pray in the Spirit we will be
praying according to the will of God.
One way to pray in the Spirit is to
pray the Word of God. Example: When praying for someone to be healed, pray this
verse over them: 1Pe 2:24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the
tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose
stripes you were healed. Another way to pray in the Spirit is to pray prayers
that the Holy Spirit inspired. See this Prayer: Eph 3:14 For this reason I bow
my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Eph 3:15 from whom the whole
family in heaven and earth is named, Eph 3:16 that He would grant you,
according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His
Spirit in the inner man, Eph 3:17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through
faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, Eph 3:18 may be able to
comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and
height— Eph 3:19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you
may be filled with all the fullness of God. Eph 3:20 Now to Him who is able to
do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the
power that works in us, Eph 3:21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus
to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Effective fervent praying is a
continual asking. See: Luke 11:9 "So I say to you, ask [keep asking until
you receive], and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and
it will be opened to you". Perseverance and endurance in prayer is God's
way of exercising your faith in prayer. See: Rom 12:12 rejoicing in hope,
patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; and Col 4:12
Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always
laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete
in all the will of God.
Remember that God wants to answer our
prayers and He is waiting for us to keep on asking and believing. See: Phil 4:6
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with
thanksgiving, let your requests [Prayer] be made known to God; Phil 4:7 and the
peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and
minds through Christ Jesus. Also: 1Th 5:17 pray without ceasing.
There are all kinds of ways to pray.
There is petition prayer, supplications, praying in the Spirit, praying in
faith, praying in the name of Jesus Christ, praying according to God's Will and
praying from the heart. See: Eph 6:18 praying always with all prayer and
supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance
and supplication for all the saints.