Summary: An in-depth look through the New Testament examining 34 scriptural ways to pray. While it is outlined as one sermon, it can best be preached as a series divided over several services. The outline is self-explanitory and not too in depth. It would be ve
One of the biggest struggles many Christians face is knowing how to pray. Some Christians think they know how to pray, but really pray unscripturally. Often, even those who know scriptural principles about prayer feel like they may be missing something in their prayer experience. Paul talks about this dilemma in Romans 8:26-27.
"In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will." (Romans 8:26-27, NIV)
Even though we often do not know how to pray, it is comforting to know that the Holy Spirit is interceding to the Father for us. But God has not only provided the Spirit to pray for us. He has provided principles in the Bible to show us how to pray. One of the best known scriptures giving direction concerning prayer is known as the Lord’s prayer.
"This, then, is how you should pray: ’Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ " (Matthew 6:9-13, NIV)
This isn’t really the Lord’s prayer, as you can see. It is our prayer, our example of how to speak with God. In this prayer we find praise to God, prayer for His will, presentation of need, a plea for forgiveness, and a request for help in resisting temptation and for protection from the enemy.
This scripture is but one of many that supply direction on how to pray to God. In the next few weeks, we will examine the new testament and many of the principles it reveals concerning prayer. However, it is important to note that the old testament contains many useful scriptures concerning prayer as well, and we would miss out if we neglect these scriptures in our Christian walk.
1. Pray for your enemies. (Matthew 5:43-45)
2. Ask, seek, and knock. (Matthew 7:7-8)
3. Pray corporately. (Matthew 18:19-20)
4. Pray for strength against temptation. (Mark 4:38)
5. Pray without restraint. (Luke 6:12)
6. Pray for more harvesters. (Luke 10:2)
7. Pray with endurance. (Luke 18:1-7)
8. Pray with humility. (Luke 18:10-14)
9. Pray in Jesus’ name. (John 15:14-16)
10. Pray for spiritual protection. (John 17:15)
11. Pray for opportunities to encourage the faith of others. (Romans 1:8-12)
12. Give thanks. (1 Corinthians 1:4)
13. Pray in tongues and in English. (1 Corinthians 14:14-15)
14. Pray for the perfecting of the saints. (2 Corinthians 13:7-9)
15. Pray for the Spirit of wisdom and revelation. (Ephesians 1:15-19)
16. Pray that your love may abound. (Philippians 1:9-11)
17. Present your requests. (Philippians 4:6-7)
18. Pray that you may live a life worthy of the Lord. (Colossians 1:9-12)
19. Pray for those who are sharing Christ. (Colossians 4:2-4)
20. Pray continually. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
21. Pray that Christ will be glorified in you. (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)
22. Pray for the propagation of the gospel. (2 Thessalonians 3:1)
23. Pray for those in authority over you. (1 Timothy 2:1-2)
a. You toward others. (Matthew 6:14-15)
b. Others toward you. (Matthew 5:23-24)
25. Pray the we will be active in sharing our faith. (Philemon 6)
26. Pray for wisdom. (James 1:5)
27. Pray with faith. (James 1:6-8)
28. Pray with right motives. (James 4:1-3)
29. Pray for healing. (James 5:13-15)
30. Pray for each other. (James 5:16)
31. Tell God your concerns. (1 Peter 5:7)
32. Confess your sins to God. (1 John 1:9)
33. Pray for the sins of others. (1 John 5:16a)
34. Pray for prosperity. (3 John 2)
God has provided many principles in the scripture on how we ought to pray. If anything is clear, let it be this: the people of God are called to be a people of prayer. If we wish to glorify God, our lives must be consumed with seeking the face of God.
Before God will hear our prayers, we must be willing to give ourselves to Him and become His child by the sacrifice of Christ on the cross.
C. Altar Ministry
Spend time seeking God and making a renewed commitment to be a person of prayer. Use the principles you have learned from the Word of God on prayer as you seek His face and make this commitment to know Him and love Him more.