14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. 16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:14 – 16)
The contributions to the blog were excellent again yesterday. We will continue our reflections on the Discipline of Prayer as we consider the theme, A World in Need.
The following is an excerpt from an invitation for a National Day of Prayer breakfast in Washington D.C. almost 20 years ago:
“The United States is still trying to help the fledgling government of Iraq to take its first baby steps toward the task of governing their own affairs. While this process continues, so does the violence with April being one of the bloodiest months on record for U.S. forces. Iran continues its march toward obtaining nuclear weapons, thumbing its nose at a world community that seems to lack the resolve needed to stop them. In the Sudan, genocide continues unabated as the Sudanese government seems unable or just plain unwilling to stop the slaughter. North Korea hasn’t gone away and the United States is under serious attack from South America as more countries south of the border line up to join Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in his anti-American rants. And we haven’t even mentioned the possibility that millions could die if all the doomsayers are right about bird flu.”
With just a few adjustments, note how the statement from almost two decades ago sounds current:
“The United States is still trying to help the government of Iraq to govern their own affairs. While this process continues, so does the violence. Iran continues its march toward obtaining nuclear weapons, thumbing its nose at a world community that seems to lack the resolve needed to stop them. North Korea hasn’t gone away and the United States is under serious attack from Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro in his anti-American rants. And we haven’t even mentioned the possibility that millions could die if all the doomsayers are right about COVID-19.”
In world affairs, it does seem as if the more things change, the more they stay the same. And, it could cause some to conclude that there is no point in praying, but what does the Bible say?
Please prayerfully read the passage above and consider the question below.
Why should we be persistent and remain confident in our prayers for the world?
March 10, 2020 at 10:15 am
I gave this question a long hard thinking and my first reaction is that regardless of what I understand or think about whether things change (the way I think they should through prayers) it’s for my benefit to align myself with Gods truth so I may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of my need.
So I should consistently and persistently pray with confidence for this world because though it seems like things might not be changing the way we want or think they should, those prayers could be having great impact on individuals and small groups and bringing about changes in their sphere of life and because it’s not something humongous or newsworthy, we never hear.
Confidence is putting my faith to work even when I don’t see the changes I trust and believe.. as the song says “God said it and I believe it and that settles it for me” .
March 10, 2020 at 10:35 am
Believers in Christ are to remember the instructions He has given to pray unceasingly and that God’s heart is for His creation. The Holy Spirit is continually making intercession for me. I should be consistent in my obedience. Because God loved the world He gave His only Son. Our instruction to pray for the peace of Jerusalem is a model to pray for the peace of Iran, Iraq, America, Venezuela… our neighbors, household and our own life.
March 10, 2020 at 10:51 am
When we pray, it’s not just for solutions to our issues on Earth. Our hope is for a greater salvation, one that is beyond what’s happening in the world. So we pray in the midst of all these issues not necessarily for total resolution, but for people to be saved and know Christ despite the tragedy around them.
March 10, 2020 at 11:19 am
I can’t fathom Life without praying.
Even though things change but remain same.
It goes to prove that more people have to pray.
I think perhaps less people are praying?
I know I heard less people going to church in Europe.
I can’t say much as even throughout the bible from my limited knowledge it seems since Adam and Eve man has this battle.
March 10, 2020 at 12:45 pm
This lesson and 1 Timothy 2: 1 thru 6 has helped me greatly in understanding the Biblical position on praying for the world. In fact it states that praying for the world benefits believers directly enabling us to live “peaceable lives in all Godliness and honesty.” The obvious inference here is that believers’ prayers for the world are impactful, improving and sustaining the lives of both believers and unbelievers.
This new understanding has helped me feel greater motivation to pray for the world with an earnestness I did not feel before.
March 10, 2020 at 1:35 pm
We should remain persistent in our prayers, in that we know that our great high priest will hear our prayers and respond in a way that glorifies him. We cannot put a timeline for a response to our requests, God in his own wisdom will determine the best time to respond. The world does not control God, it is the opposite, God controls the world.
March 11, 2020 at 2:00 pm
We have been commanded to “pray without ceasing”. We should never stop praying. Even when it seems like God isn’t listening, or is taking too long to answer our prayer, we need to have faith and remind ourselves that God’s timing is perfect, and He will answer when His time is right. We should also remember that His answer may also be, “No.” Either way, we should never give up and continue to make our request known to God.