“With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” Ephesians 6:18
There’s an old hymn that goes, “It’s me, it’s me, it’s me Oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer…!” It’s awesome that Paul concludes his great message on the Armor of God with prayer! The truth is, we cannot properly clothe ourselves in God’s spiritual armor, and step out onto the battlefield as Christians to face our fiercest enemy the devil, apart from prayer. Yes! Christ has defeated the devil on the cross and by the power of His bodily resurrection from the dead, but Paul says we are no match for the trickery of the devil apart from the Holy Spirit’s leading us in warfare prayer.
In today’s Scripture verse, Paul commands the Ephesian Christians to “pray at all times” which literally means on all occasions and with all kinds of prayers as led by the Holy Spirit. How awesome! Along with the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God (Ephesians 6:17), Paul has given the Christian the offensive piece we often neglect the most in the church-prayer!
So, let us be alert and steadfast in our prayers for “all the saints” and watch with deep gratitude and to the glory of God as He works in the hearts and minds of God’s people. Let us pray!
Putting on the Armor of God in Prayer, Part 2
“With all prayer and petition, pray at-all-times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints. Ephesians 6:18
In the later part of the First Century, Paul took the various pieces of a Roman soldier’s weaponry, and under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, likened it to spiritual armor any Christian can put on to stand firm and resist the tricks and trickery (schemes/wiles of the devil), each new day!(See Ephesians 6:10-17).
However, Paul doesn’t conclude his masterpiece on the armor with verse seventeen, he continues with what would often be the most neglected piece of spiritual armor for the Christian—PRAYER.
In our Scripture for today, Paul not only commands the Christian warrior to pray on every occasion (every time you get the opportunity to pray), but to realize and apply to his mind and heart to Whom he is praying when he prays. The idea behind the original word Paul uses translated prayer and pray is: Come face to face with God, and surrender your life in exchange for His, consecrating your life on an ongoing basis. And be sure to give Him thanks in the advance for moving in your life.
The original word translated “petition” (supplication) represents a petition (cry) for God’s help that exposes a person’s insufficiency to meet his or her own needs; one that is drawn from a heart and spirit born of godly humility. Just imagine what our seasons of prayer would be like with Lord if we humbly desired to be with Him more than anything else! Then, we would come together as the Body of Christ, more watchful and persistent in our prayers for all the saints. In this manner, we would truly form a true prayer chain!
Lord, teach us to pray!
Putting on the Armor in Prayer, Part 3
“With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit…”
We have been exploring the armor worn by a Roman soldier during the days of Paul, and in the process, likened this equipment to the spiritual armor to be worn daily by the Christian. Paul lists six pieces of armor: (the belt) waist encircled with God’s truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shoes of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit which Paul says is the word of God.
Interestingly however, the Roman soldier carried a seventh piece of armor with him-the lance. There were a wide variety of lances used in that day according to length, weight, and different in the manner in which they were tipped. The most common was the six-foot pilum lance which was used when an encampment of Roman soldiers was under attack. The soldier, able to hurl this massive spear from a distance, could inflict a great amount of damage upon the enemy before they could pose any type of threat.
Paul concludes his Holy-Spirit-inspired masterpiece on the armor of God, with the most important weapon of all-prayer! Do you have a loved one who is currently under attack and possibly in bondage to the enemy? Take aim at the heart of Satan’s plans for your loved one and destroy them! Hurl the lance of persistent prayer at Him, coupled with the word.
Here are a few examples from the Scriptures you can pray to overcome the enemy in your life or the life of a loved one through the power of Christ and to the glory of God! Put your name or the name of your loved one in the prayer and invite the Holy Spirit to guide, protect, and empower you as pray these Scriptures. (See Ephesians 6:10-20; Psalm 25:1-2; Psalm 31:14-17; Psalm 91).
In the Victorious and Saving Name of Christ! The One Who Prays for us!
The Busiest Day in Jesus Life!
One pastor recently wrote of “the busiest day in Jesus life.”
“And when evening had come, after the sun had set, they began bringing to all who were ill and those who were demon-possessed. And the whole city had gathered at the door.” Mark 1:32-33
Have you ever found yourself too busy to pray? I can assure you I battle with busyness on a day-to-day basis as I am sure, you do, too! Check the fuller context of Jesus’ busy day by reading Chapter One of Mark’s Gospel in its entirety, but in its essence, it was a non-stop, full day of ministry! And, Jesus, like you and like me, was exhausted!
It began that morning and by the time most of us would have called it a day, it was, in many respects, just beginning. Dr. David Jeremiah reminds us how that day was crowded with miracles to perform, lessons to teach, people to heal, and disputes to settle. It was a day totally dedicated to reaching out to people and to ministering to their deepest needs; and Jesus didn’t turn anyone away. And yet, when most folks were in bed asleep, Mark 1:35 tells us, “And in the early morning while it was still dark. He arose and went out and departed to a lonely place, and was praying there.”
After the busiest day of Jesus’ life, Jesus chose to rise early and pray. You say, “Yes Pastor Louie, but, He was Jesus!” Yes, He was, but even the Son of God knew that He needed daily conversation with His Father. He needed the strength and direction to perform the works of ministry that only came from the intimacy He shared with His Father through prayer. And, if Jesus needed prayer, how much more do we need prayer! The truth is, things are never going to slow down in our daily affairs, but taking time to pray in-spite-of the “busyness,” will be a transformative experience to our lives as Christians!
Thank you, Jesus, that you are never too busy for me!