Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me; That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints; ~Romans 15:30-31
A little boy was making a lot of noise as the preacher started preaching. His father warned him that if he did not sit still and behave, then his father would take him outside and discipline him. The little boy did not heed his father’s warnings and kept up being naughty. After about five more minutes of this, the father glared at his little son, picked him up, and started walking to take his son outside. The commotion had the people in the back watching this unfold, and as the father was walking out with the son, the little boy said out loud, “Y’all pray for me!”
Romans 15:30-31 is a prayer request of the Apostle Paul. It is request of prayer for him. Paul teaches us a very important lesson on how to pray for one another, especially for those who are in a pastoral or missionary capacity. Let us see how we can pray more effectively for one another.
We see a saintly PASSION.
“Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit…” Paul was making this request to people he loved, and who likewise loved him. The people he wrote to longed for Paul to minister to them. However, distance and circumstances prevented them from being with each other. Paul was encouraging them to demonstrate their love for him: pray for him. When we pray for another, we have each other on our hearts. When we pray for one another, the Holy Spirit speaks to us about the importance of spiritual unity and oneness. The Christians in the first century knew that their collective prayers had much influence with God when they were being offered by people who were united in doctrine, devotion, and duty.
We see the zealous PRACTICE.
“…That ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me….” The phrase “strive together” is one word in the Greek. It means “with great intensity.” It has the idea of a struggle for something or someone. It is a word closely associated with the phrase “labouring fervently” found in Col. 4:12. First, this is ardent praying. It is praying where you are wrestling with God for a specific result. It is the kind of praying where you will not let go of God until the request is met. Second, this is ambitious praying. It is praying in faith. It is opening your mouth wide so that God can fill it. Third, it is articulate praying. It is praying in the Spirit where our heart is crying out for God to do something, but we somehow lack the words. It is the Holy Spirit making groanings for us which cannot be uttered. It is praying in faith. It is praying that means business with God. Is your praying striving together with the requests being asked for? Is your praying with evangelistic and earnest intensity?
We see specific PRODUCT.
“That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints.” Paul was feeling the pressure in his soul as he was drawing nearer to have a face-off with the Jews at Jerusalem. He knew that the fanatical Jews would not receive him well. So, he asked the fellow believers to pray for his safety. Then, he asked them to pray for acceptance by the believers at Jerusalem. His request was asking the believers to pray that God would change the hearts of people whose perception of him was poisoned and wrong. He desired that these believers would pray that he would have a good acceptance by those towards which he sought to minister the gospel and goodwill.
What’s the hardest thing you are praying for? What is the intensity level of your praying? Take a moment to reflect on Paul’s request, and consider how your praying does make a difference. Pray for me!
Have an intercession-filled God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 2 Chronicles 21-24