RSS

Tag Archives: prayer for others

Colossal Truths from the Letter to the Colossians! Public Prayer! (1:9-14)

We are looking at prominent themes in the epistle to the Colossians. And this morning we want to once again notice the theme of prayer in Chapter 1 (before we move on to Chapter 2). We’ve already seen Paul’s labor in prayer for these believers, but something else in his prayer has gotten my attention. Let’s read over verses 9-14 once again:

9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Here’s what strikes me: Paul is not quietly and silently lifting these believers up before the Lord. His prayer is public and he sends his prayer to the Colossians in a letter! A letter which (I believe) Paul knew would become holy Scripture, read by followers of Jesus forever! Others can see and read what Paul’s concerns are for these Christians. The Colossians, no doubt, would read and re-read his prayer over and over again. They would be reminded of his longing that they would be “filled with the knowledge of God’s will,” that they would “live a life worthy of the Lord,” that they would seek to “please him in every way,” etc.

Do I pray that way for anyone? Or do I just pray that they will get a job, grow strong in their marriage, have their health restored, etc? And IF I prayed for someone else as Paul did here, would I write that down and give it to them? Or do I spend most of my prayer time praying for myself and a pony?

 

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on May 27, 2019 in prayer

 

Tags: , ,

How Should I Pray for . . . Others? (A Study of Colossians 1:9-14) Part 3

I suffer from a poor view of prayer. I do. I look at prayer as a last resort, a kind of 911 approach to the Lord. When all my efforts have failed, then I pray.

I don’t think I’ve scratched the surface of what prayer ought to mean to me — individually. I have not because I ask not. I rely on my own strength and lose my battles time and time again. The “I-can-do-it-myself” childish protest keeps me from expressing daily trust in the Lord and relying on His strength and wisdom. I’ve got a lot to learn about my personal need for consistent, disciplined, personal prayer.

But what about others? What obligations do I have to bring others before the throne of grace, to intercede for them, to present their needs before the Father? What responsibility is mine to envision where they should be spiritually and to help them get there by talking about them to my Heavenly Father?

The Apostle Paul sets the example for us here in Colossians 1. Let’s look at the words he uses to bring these believers — and their most critical needs — before the Lord:

I can’t help it, but I’m always thinking of the question, “Will this preach?”  So, here’s the beginning of a draft outline I’m working on.

I.  Paul’s Strategic Commitment to Pray for Others (v. 9)

Paul uses expressions like “we have not stopped praying for you” and “we continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will . . .”  Persistence in prayer — for others — is the point here.  I’m reminded of Luke 18 and what we saw in a previous post about a widow’s need and an unjust judge.  A couple of posts back we wrote:  A widow desperately needs the help of a judge who neither feared God nor cared about what people thought. She pesters him with her request, to the point that he says, “‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

Jesus says, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night?” (v. 7).  Jesus told this parable “to show them that they should always pray and not give up (v. 1).  Have you started praying for others?  Be persistent and don’t give up!

But what constitutes Paul’s prayer here in Colossians 1?  What are the specific requests which he makes of the Father for these believers?  (to be continued)

 

 

 

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 12, 2018 in prayer

 

Tags: , , , ,

Some Challenges from Colossians! (Part 5)

Let’s work our way slowly through the first chapter of Colossians.

After his initial greeting, Paul shows us his commitment to prayer. He writes:

3 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God’s people— 5 the faith and love that spring from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel 6 that has come to you. In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace. 7 You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, 8 and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.

9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on January 20, 2018 in Colossians 1

 

Tags: , ,