Effectual Prayer Eph. 6:12,18 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
This lesson is on effectual prayer. Sometimes we approach prayer like kids playing a game of pickup basketball. We’re playing hard but we’re still playing, nevertheless. It’s not like pro ball at all. Yet in prayer, we are supposed to be the “pros.” We are given a responsibility and a privilege to pray. So, we should be as effective in prayer as possible. In order to do be effectual in prayer, we need more:
Wrestling in prayer – Eph 6:12, 18 – we have the whole armor of God because we are involved in a fight [2 Tim 4:7; 1 Tim 6:12]. And this fight is against the strongest spiritual forces in the world apart from the Lord. Casual prayer isn’t wrestling prayer. When you are wrestling in prayer, you are entreating God to overcome the power of the devil in a situation or a person’s life. Many of us have wrestled in prayer at invitations where the destiny of a lost soul hangs in the balance of one decision whether to trust or reject Christ. Many of us have wrestled through the night in intercessory prayer. Wrestling prayer is effectual prayer.
Fervency in prayer – Jas 5:16 – what we pray about really needs to matter. Often, I have prayed for things without fervency. God might say, “If it doesn’t mean anymore to you than that why should I answer you?” We need to ask God to give us fervent hearts in prayer so that our prayers will be effectual. Fervent prayer is effectual prayer.
Perseverance in prayer – Eph 6:18; Acts 12:5, 12-13 – staying with prayer until the answer comes or the peace of God comes [Phil 4:6-7]. In either case, the battle is won. There are times when we must devote ourselves completely to prayer and nothing else. Persevering prayer is effectual prayer.
Importunity in prayer – Lk 18:1-8 – verse 5 says “continual coming” – we need to keep coming to the Lord in prayer. Some of the things for which we pray are long-haul prayer requests and in faith we need to keep coming to God in prayer the whole way through. Some things just take a long time for God to accomplish. Continual prayer is effectual prayer.
Fasting in prayer – Matt 17:21 – if it is true that certain devils wouldn’t come out without fasting and if it is true that Jesus and Paul spent time in fasting and prayer, then it must be true that there are certain spiritual battles that are not won without fasting and prayer. Fasting in prayer results in effectual prayer.
Submission in prayer – Jas 4:1-8 – in this passage we read, “ye ask not,” [Jas 4:2], “ye ask amiss,” [Jas 4:3], “ye lust,” [Jas 4:1, 4-5], “ye double minded,” [Jas 4:8]. We need to approach God humbly seeking his will, not our own. We need to be submitted to God in every area of our lives. We need to have his mind about the matters over which we are praying so that we are ready to receive his answer, not demand our own. Jesus was submitted to his Father in prayer. Submission in prayer results in effectual prayer.
Conclusion: The word of God is the most powerful physical force in the world. The Spirit of God is the most powerful spiritual force in the world. And prayer is the most powerful practical force in the world. God has given us this privilege of praying and we need to pray effectually.