AVAILING PRAYER OF THE RIGHTEOUS
Prayer is communication with God. Why do we need to pray? It is God's way of helping us to trust Him and rid ourselves of anxieties (Phil 4:6). It is through prayer that we find true peace. God's kind of peace that transcends all understanding (Phil 4:7). We need to pray in order to avoid falling into temptation and the Lord Jesus Christ commanded it. Matthew 26:41 says, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak” (NIV). We need to pray because the devil is here on earth. The Lord Jesus Christ himself prayed all the time while he was here on earth. He was tempted by the devil, yet He overcame him by the word of God.
“A prayerless Christian is a powerless Christian”. There is little you can do in the kingdom walk without prayers. 1 Peter 5:8-9 says, “Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experience of suffering is required of your brotherhood throughout the world.” The devil is seeking to devour you. He is seeking to destroy your destiny and take advantage of you and your situation. The devil has demons working for him day and night, but I have good news for you! The Bible says in Luke 10:17, “The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, "Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!" These were the seventy-two people appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ to go in twos to preach the gospel. Here they returned sharing their testimony of how the demons were submitting to them. What was the Lord’s response to them? Luke 10:18-19 says, “And he said to them, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I have given you authority to tread upon serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall hurt you.”
How should we pray? Below are some ways by which Jesus prayed and how he expects us to pray:
Pray – I want to quickly point out that there is nothing wrong with praying silently for as long as one’s mind is in it. But I firmly believe that when we speak out Gods words in prayers, it builds faith aloudis us and helps us to pray from our heart. Hebrews 5:7 says, “During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his relevant submission” (NIV). In Acts 4:24-31, believers raised their voices to the extent that the place where they were meeting shook. In Acts 16:25-26, Paul and Silas sang and prayed aloud in the prison such that everyone in the prison heard them.
Pray all – Spiritual wickedness in the heavenly places operates mostly at night while people are sleeping. It is no coincidence that we serve a God who neither sleeps nor slumbers. He watches over us at all times and since he has given us authority and dominion over the power of darkness, he expects us to pray in the night time also. My wife and I have experienced God’s visitation more when we pray during the night. This is not to say that God doesn’t answer prayers at any other time, but it takes determination, boldness nightand desperation to get up and pray during the night when the activities of the enemy is on the increase, and God honors that.
Pray early in the morning – What a better time to set the activities for the day than early in the morning. Our Lord Jesus Christ prayed early in the morning when he was here on earth. Mark 1:35 says, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Jesus set the course of the day by his early prayers. No wonder he moved in power and authority all day long as people thronged in to see him.
Pray at all times – Whether things are going right or not, my challenge to you is to pray. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says, “Pray continually”. Our strength is derived from the Lord. As such, we would only be filled with God’s power when we spend time with him.
Conditions to satisfy when we pray include:
- Proverbs 15:8 says, "The Lord detests the sacrifice of the wicked, but the prayer of the upright pleases him". Also, Proverbs 15:29 says, "The Lord is far from the wicked but He hears the prayer of the righteous". Lv 11:44 enjoins us to be holy for our God is holy. Ps 24:3-4 talks about the need to have clean hands and a pure heart if we must ascend the hill of the Lord. Without Holinessholiness we cannot see Him.
Pray in Jesus’ name – All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to our Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:18). Our Lord Jesus Christ declared in John 16:23 that His Father will give us anything we ask in His name. Only the name of Jesus brings defeat to any contrary situation in our lives. Philippians 2:9-11 says, “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the Father”.
Pray by Faith – Without it is impossible to please God, declares Hebrews 11:6. James 5:15 also talks about the need to offer our prayer in faith. Faith is very vital to faithhaving our prayer answered. We must believe the spoken word of God regarding our situations. God is ever faithful. He will do whatever he has spoken, and there is the need for us to “approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).
Agreement - Jesus states in Mat 18:19 that that if two shall agree on earth regarding anything we ask for, it will be granted by the Father. Also read Act 1:14 and Acts 2:1. It is important that you find someone to agree with you in prayers regarding your need. Someone who will actually pray with you not discourage you. As you do that the Lord will show up in your situation and turn it around.
Humility - Back your prayer up with fasting. Fasting has the potential to humble us. It puts us in a position to hear from God. Josh 7:6
Desperation - According to the dictionary, desperate means undertaken out of extreme urgency or as a last resort. There is hardly anyone who received a miracle from God in the Bible who was not desperate. The Shunammite held on to Elisha's feet until he went with her (2 Kings 4:30, the Israelites cried unto the Lord in Egypt until He delivered them, Jacob fought with an Angel until his name was changed, Jabez cried unto the Lord until he became more honorable than his brothers, the woman with the issue of blood came from behind to touch Jesus and she got healed. These are some example of people who got desperate in the Bible and received their much needed miracles.
What else do you need to know? The Lord himself has told you that you now have the power to deal with the devil and his demons, but this can only happen by prayer and fasting. There are all kinds of demons, but when you pray in the name of Jesus they must bow out of your situation. God has highly exalted the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and nothing is impossible when you pray in His name.
The Bible says in James 5:16, “Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects.” Don’t be intimidated by your situation, you have the righteousness of our Lord Jesus Christ, put the enemy on his toes by your constant and unrelenting prayers and release the power of God into your situation.
If you have not given your life to Christ don’t be alarmed. You can do it right now. Confess your sins to God and ask Him for forgiveness, then say this out loud: Lord Jesus, I come before you this day for forgiveness and I believe you are the Son of God, that you died for my sin and rose again on the third day. You paid the price for my salvation while I was yet a sinner. Come into my heart, and stay today. You are now the Lord of my life. Thank you for saving me, in Jesus mighty name I pray. Amen!
Congratulations! I encourage you to look for a Bible believing church and worship there. Get a copy of the Bible and set some time aside daily to study it. Also bring your needs to the Lord after your study. Lastly, let people around you know that you have changed and that you are now a child of God. Your life will never remain the same as you do these. Now you are ready to pray. You will need to accompany some of these prayers with fasting. According to the dictionary, fasting is the act or practice of abstaining from or eating very little food. This may go be just one day or several weeks. Let the spirit of the Lord lead you on the length of the fast and watch God move in your behalf.