My mama has always been fond of saying “What’s the point in doing something if you don’t do it right?” Good point! We hardly spend enough time in prayer as it is, but if we are going to pray at all, shouldn’t we do it right?
So what, exactly is the “prayer that availeth much”?
1) It is the prayer of a righteous man: (James 5:16) Do you happen to know any? No? Nor do I. The only righteousness is that of Christ. But when we are in Christ we are a new creature, and His righteousness is attributed to us by God through His work of redemption done on the cross. It is really Christ praying in us. Hebrews 7:25 says “Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them”.
2) It is the specific prayer: (Matthew 6:9-13) Jesus Himself taught us how to pray.
3) It is the humble prayer: (Matthew 6:5-8) “And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly”.
4) It is the confident prayer: (Mark 11:24) “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them”.
5) It is the prayer in the name of Jesus Christ: (John 14:13) And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son”. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24)
6) It is the repentant prayer: (Matthew 5:23-24) Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. Matthew 6:12 “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors”
And in some cases…..
7) The fasting prayer: (Matthew 17:21) Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. Daniel 9:3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes.
Jesus taught us the crucial elements or steps of prayer in the passage that has come to be known as “The Lord”s Prayer”.
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen
These steps are:
The entering into His presence, Giving of due glory and praise, proper order of priorities, the asking, the confessing and forgiving, the acknowledgement of our own weakness and insufficiency, accompanied by confession of His own sufficiency and sovereignty.
How do your prayers measure up?