The Priority Of Prayer

When was the last time you prayed for our President?  When did you last pray for Congress?  What about the Supreme Court or other government agencies?  How’s your prayer life in general?  I know that mine could use some work.  Paul tells Timothy that prayers should be offered for all people.  We need to pray for our government officials and those in authority.  He calls for four kinds of prayers (from The College Press NIV Commentary: 1, 2, Timothy and Titus, Moss):
  • Petitions or requests – a prayer for a specific need
  • Prayers – this is a more general word for prayer
  • Intercession – this is a word that may mean to come before a king with a request for favor
  • Thanksgiving – a prayer offered in gratitude to God

Paul tells Timothy that the reason people should pray is because it “is good and pleases God our Savior” (1 Timothy 2:3, NIV).  Verse 4 tells us that God wants everyone “to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.”  God desires that no one should perish in the fires of hell.  I think that verse 4 indicates the kinds of prayers we should offer on behalf of all people.  Our requests and prayers should first and foremost be focused on the salvation of all people.  I believe that we should pray for blessings, good health, healing and comfort, but our primary concern should be for the salvation of everyone by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.  

Here is a link to an app that you can download to your phone or tablet that will help you remember to pray.  I’ve started using it and like any good habit, it may be hard to get going, but once you do, you’ll be glad you did.  I like this app because it also forces us to get specific in our prayers.  We need to pray for people by name, not just in generalities.  Give it a try and see if it energizes your prayer life.
1 Timothy 2:1-7 (NIV)
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time. And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a true and faithful teacher of the Gentiles.

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