Reading Scripture: Matthew 6:31-33
Verse to Memorize: Matthew 6:33
Reference: Psalm 66:18; Matthew 6:26-28
Goal: to help believers understand the right order for prayer and how to offer up God-pleasing prayer
While you are praying to God the Father in the name of Jesus Christ, angels gather and put the aroma of your prayer in golden censers. The censer is not deep but it is wide at the base and its size is different from person to person. This is because each one’s fragrance, thickness, and concentration of prayer is all different according to how much they have achieved the heart of God and how great their measure of faith is.
The aroma of some believers is offered up thickly like a waterfall whereas others’ is thin. If you pray with your heart in faith and love, your fragrance of prayer will become thick and strong and it will be fast for the censer to be filled and for you to get answers. However, if you pray with evilness in your heart your fragrance of prayer will be thin and it will be slow to receive answers. Thus, we need to unceasingly offer up the fragrance of prayer that is of goodness and acceptable to God. What then is the right order of prayer and what kind of prayer should we give to receive answers quickly?
1. The prayers of Repentance, Driving away the Enemy Devil and Satan, and of Thanksgiving
To offer the prayer that is delivered to God, we should start by praying with the prayer of repentance, then the prayers to drive away the enemy devil and Satan, followed by the prayer of thanksgiving. Although these prayers may be for just a few minutes, you have to look back upon whether you had done something improper in the sight of God or not뾞nd destroy the wall of sins before God. This is because if we pray with sins, the fragrance will not be offered up to God.
It is just said in Psalm 66:18, which reads, “If I regard wickedness in my heart, the LORD will not hear.” You have to look back upon your day and check if you burst out into anger, lied, slandered, had any thoughts and deeds that are not in accordance with God’s will.
Next, you need to pray to drive away the enemy devil and Satan in the name of Jesus Christ. That is to say, you should pray in this way: “In the name of Jesus Christ I command, enemy devil and Satan, and all evil spirits and rulers of the kingdom of the air, go away! Their servants go away! With angels and the heavenly army and with Your blazing eyes protect me with the fiery hedge of the Holy Spirit!”
Afterwards, you should offer up the prayer of thanksgiving. In the prayer, you give thanks for being protected by God during the day, receiving good things from Him, being provided with the way to avoiding afflictions, and everything’s working together for good. As mentioned above, you have to repent, pray to drive away the enemy devil and Satan, and give thanks in prayer above all other prayer titles. If you finish the prayers and pray for the kingdom of God and His righteousness, your prayer will be accepted by God more quickly.
2. Prayer for God’s Kingdom
Matthew 6:31-33 reads, “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” It means that you need to put your priority on the kingdom of God and His righteousness in prayer rather than seeking your own need or your family’s affairs. Then, God will not only offer your clothes, food, and drink and fulfill other needs, but also satisfy our hearts’ desires more quickly.
Then, what is the prayer for the kingdom of God? In other words, it refers to the prayer for souls’ salvation, that is, the prayer to evangelize unbelievers, accomplish God’s kingdom, and extend it. The church serves as a passage towards God, namely, that is leading souls to God who are dying without knowing Heaven and Hell. Therefore, all prayers for the ministry of the church are for God’s kingdom.
First for the ministry, we should pray for our shepherd who is achieving the will of God the Father as a leader of the church. The Israelites could come out of Egypt because there was Moses, and they could enter the land flowing with milk and honey, Canaan, because there was Joshua. In the same manner, the shepherd ministers to the church and leads the people to Heaven, so in this way his role is significant. Thus, we should pray for the shepherd with all our hearts.
Secondly, you need to pray for the construction of the sanctuaries. This is because we need the sanctuary of God for those of us who are believers to gather and to fulfill the kingdom of God and His righteousness. We pray for details including the finance needed for the construction, various relevant conditions that must be met, and legal procedures.
Thirdly, we have to pray for pastors, elders, senior deaconesses, full-time workers and church leaders who help with the shepherd’s ministry. The order is as follows: pastors who tend the flock of the church, elders and senior deaconesses, and full-time workers.
Fourthly, we have to pray for church leaders who have been devoted to the church revival and development. We pray for district, sub-district, cell leaders, mission presidents, group leaders, and small group leaders.
Fifthly, if your church has branch churches you should pray for pastors ministering to the churches, and the church members. Moreover, we should pray for the world mission, overseas missionaries, pastors, and believers. Also, you should pray for publication ministry and broadcasting ministry. Then, you need to pray for your parents, brothers, sisters, relatives, workplace, and co-workers’ evangelization, national evangelism, and the world evangelism. This is because the kingdom of God becomes prosperous to the extent that many souls reach salvation.
If you have love for the kingdom of God, you will pray for the church, the shepherd, and souls with tears. In addition, you will sow the seeds of blessings with deeds such as working more faithfully, serving the members, and giving offerings with your heart.
3. Prayer for God’s Righteousness
After we accept Jesus Christ and become God’s child, we receive the Holy Spirit as a gift and learn the Word of God. We come to understand sins, righteousness, and judgment. We become a person who practices the Word of God in the guidance of the Spirit.
To pursue God’s holiness and act according to His will is ‘Achieving the righteousness of God’. So, to seek God’s righteousness is referred as to prayer for our own souls’ prosperity.
Many parts in the Bible say that God’s children must resist in their striving against sins to the point of shedding blood, abstain from every form of evil, and become a holy and perfect child who resembles God just as written in Matthew 5:48, 1 Peter 1:16, 1 Thessalonians 5:23, and 3 John 1:2. There are some believers who say that they have been very busy fulfilling their duties and that there is only time for them to pray for their sanctification, so they don’t perform their duties for souls’ salvation and are just focused on changing themselves. They say that in doing it in this way they are seeking the righteousness of God.
But when we try hard to save souls, God will give us strength so that we can achieve the righteousness of God quickly. While praying to accomplish the kingdom of God, evangelizing souls, and trying to serve other souls, we can discover our shortcomings more quickly. So we naturally gain the ability to pray more earnestly to achieve the heart of the Lord and are blessed for our souls to be prosperous and for us to enjoy good health.
4. Prayer for Our Daily Bread
God said that He would fill us with what we need when we seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness above all else. If you still worry about what to eat and wear and where to live, it shows that you don’t believe in the omniscient and omnipotent God.
Matthew 6:26-28 reads, “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin.”
God the Creator feeds the birds of the air and grows the lilies of the field. Don’t you think such God will answer His beloved children’s prayer? Thus, I urge you to seek God’s kingdom and righteousness with faith in God the Almighty. Then, pray for what you need in your life at home and in workplace such as financial blessing. God the Father will see you obeying and He will take responsibility for all your problems as well as all your necessities.