What should we pray for?

What should we pray for?

Jesus taught His disciples what was most important to pray for.

25/08/20234 min

By ActiveChristianity

What should we pray for?

Jesus taught us what we should pray for

When the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray, He first taught them what was most important to pray for.

Jesus taught His disciples to pray that God’s name should be glorified, that His kingdom should come, and His will should be done. (Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:1-4.) Such a prayer pleases God. He answers prayers like these. But we read in James 4:3 that it is also possible to pray “for the wrong things” and just pray for selfish reasons.

Pray in the name of the Father

We should pray in the Father’s name! Not in our own name. It is about His kingdom! His righteousness, peace and joy. Not our own “kingdom”. It is about His will, which is good, pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2.) Not about our self-will, which is not good, pleasing or perfect. Here we see the real longing of a true disciple of Jesus Christ to live a life that is pleasing to God, and what the reasons for their prayers are.

When we read Jesus’ prayer in John 17, we see what was on His heart. Here He prays for Himself, for His apostles and for all the believers throughout all the ages. He says in His prayer to His Father: “I have shown your glory on earth; I have finished the work you gave me to do.” John 17:4 (GNT). Here we see a prayer that is completely free from selfish reasons.

When Paul wrote about his great longing and his hope, it was that “at all times, and especially right now, I shall be full of courage, so that with my whole being I shall bring honour to Christ.” Philippians 1:20 (GNT).

In James 4:6 (NCV) we can read about one of the main laws of God’s kingdom: “God is against the proud, but he gives grace to the humble.” It’s no use praying against God’s laws. God won’t hear such a prayer, like it is written in Proverbs 28:9 (CEV): “God cannot stand the prayers of anyone who disobeys his Law.”

Help when we need it

In Hebrews 4:15-16 (GNT) we read that Jesus was tempted in every way that we are tempted, and therefore we can go to Him with confidence, because “there we will receive mercy and find grace to help us just when we need it.”

Grace! Help! When we need it! For those who have a burning desire to live a life that is well-pleasing to God, the time when they need help is when they are in trials and are being tempted. Then they need help so that they don’t fall into sin, but that they can overcome and get more of the fruit of the Spirit, more godly nature (Romans 12:2; 2 Peter 1:4).

Yes, let us go to Jesus and get help. There is help there for all “who with a pure heart call out to the Lord for help” (2 Timothy 2:22, GNT) – those who pray for the right reasons.

Pray for one another

In 1 Timothy 2:3-4 (CEV) Paul tells us that we should pray for all people and give thanks for them. “This kind of prayer is good, and it pleases God our Saviour. God wants everyone to be saved and to know the whole truth.” Let us not forget that Jesus always prays to God on our behalf (Hebrews 7:25). This should be a strong encouragement to us who follow Him, that we should also be along in praying for others.

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This article is based on an article by Arild Tombre originally published on https://activechristianity.org/ and has been adapted with permission for use on this website.