Dear Visionary Leader:
I have heard it said, that God never does anything apart from the prayers of his people. I don’t know whether that is true or not, but I do believe we usually underestimate the power of prayer and overemphasize the power our performance. God desires that we pray one for another and for us to learn how to pray for one another.
In Ephesians 3:8, we read, “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ. And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God who created all things by Jesus Christ to the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus in whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him. Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my tribulations, for you, which is your glory.”
Notice that Paul says, “For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Eph. 3:14). Paul wrote this letter while he is in prison. He has a burden on his heart, while in prison, and prays for the church in Ephesus. His spirit is soaring out of that prison!
In reality, stone walls do not make a prison, nor iron bars a cage. You cannot imprison a person if he or she knows how to pray. Even though there are Believers, who are not able to attend church due to an illness, if they know how to pray, they can touch the heart of God and move mountains. Just the thought of Paul, on his knees, in prison, ought to inspire us to learn how to pray in such a manner to shake the heavenlies. Most of us would have been praying, “Please get me out of this prison.” Yet, Paul was interceding that the Church glow, grow and go!
In Ephesians 3:15, Paul writes, “For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named that he would grant you according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith, that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth and length and depth and height, and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.”
And now here’s the confidence of the prayers, as he brings his pray to a close: “Now unto him that is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages.” (Eph. 3:16)
We need to learn to intercede for our children, our spouses, our pastors, our neighbors, and friends. Yet, most of us wonder what we should pray about and how should we pray. There are so many needs and so many problems. There are times when we need to pray with specificity about a mate, or a college, or a career, or about health. Yet, if we take the prayers in the Bible and use those Bible prayers as models and begin to ask for your loved ones what people like the apostle Paul asked for those that he loved, you can be certain that you’re asking in the will of God. When you ask that kind of a prayer, then you can pray with great faith and great confidence before the Lord. It will open a whole new world of praying for you and praying with power.
There are many reasons to pray for another and to pray in such a manner that will produce powerful results.
Spiritual Wealth for Their Needfulness (Eph.3:8-16)
We are to pray for people to have spiritual wealth for their needfulness. I did not say financial wealth or monetary wealth. In verse 8. He says, “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I may preach among the Gentiles, the unsearchable riches of Christ and make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God who created all things by Jesus Christ to the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church, the manifold wisdom of God, according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord in whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him. Therefore, I desire that you faint not at my tribulations, for you, which is your glory, for this cause I bow my knees.”
What is Paul communicating? God, help these people in Ephesus to know how rich they are. They think they have need. Please Lord help them to understand the unsearchable riches of Christ Jesus, to know the eternal purpose of God.
What is the unsearchable purpose of God? In verses, 11 and 12, he says, “That you might know, the manifold riches, the grace of God.” We should pray for our children like this, “Oh, God, help them to understand, help them to know what they have in the Lord Jesus Christ. Help them to know they are in Christ.”
Do you know why some children get into worldliness? Do you know why Believers come to church three times a week, sing in the choir, give their tithe and yet their children are out dabbling in the world? Many children do this because they don’t know how rich they are in Christ.
Moses refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter because he esteemed the riches of Christ, a greater treasure than all the treasures of Egypt. We will not be sucked into Egypt when we understand what we have in the Lord Jesus Christ.
When you’ve have had a wonderful meal and then you offered a plate full of stale crumbs, you would say, “No thank you, I’m already satisfied.” And when, when you’ve been feasting on the Lord Jesus Christ, when you understand who he is and all that he has done for you, you don’t have to be out in the back alley eating out of tin cans because you can say, “I’m satisfied in the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Many young people today have never found their true satisfaction in Jesus. They may be saved but they don’t understand the riches that they have in Christ, God’s wealth, and God’s riches for their needfulness. We need to pray for the Lord to open their eyes and their heart to know how rich they are in Christ. A lot of folks are going to heaven but they’re going to heaven second class. When I say first class I’m not talking about physical or monetary wealth.
Do you know what most of us are far too interested in? We are interested in our children being wealthy and healthy and happy rather than being holy. We are far more interested in retiring early due to personal wealth instead of our eternal wealth in Christ. We are moved more emotionally with financial bonuses from work, than with the divine reality that we are truly children of the King of the Universe!
Until The Last Person Has Heard,
Dr. James. O. Davis
Global Church Network
Cochair / Global Networking