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The Top Most Powerful Prayers In The Bible

The Top Most Powerful Prayers In The Bible

The Top Most Powerful Prayers In The Bible

The Bible comprises different stories of the faith of characters who faced various trials and circumstances. They humbly surrendered themselves to God through prayers, whether in times of difficulties or thanksgiving. With their faith, they saw how God worked miraculously in their lives. This includes receiving various miracles, breakthroughs and answered prayers. Through their stories, we can also learn about how to live a life full of faith; to place our trust in God’s character. There are many prayers in the Bible that we can use as an inspiration to our prayers to call on God. 

All prayers in the Bible are powerful on their own. God doesn’t look at the length of our pleas and requests or how perfectly prayers were created. He doesn’t look at a person’s status in society but at the status of their hearts. God shows his unconditional love and unfailing grace to everyone who has faith in Him. The Bible is timeless and its words apply up to this date. So when we need encouragement, we can always turn to our Bibles.

You can also find various prayers in the bible you can use in your devotions or quiet time. We have listed out the most powerful prayers from Old and New Testaments that you can use to pray.

 

Powerful Prayers from the Old Testament

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The first books of the Bible known as the Old Testament is summarized by nine historical periods. It contains different stories such as The Creation, Abraham and the Hebrew Patriarchs, Moses and Exodus, Joshua and the Conquest of Canaan. Aside from that, it also includes the famous Bible stories of Samson and the Judge, and David and Solomon. Additionally, the Old Testament is where the Divided Kingdom, The Destruction of Israel and Judah, and Ezra and the Return from Captivity is located.

Along with these stories, countless prayers were uttered by the people of these historical periods. Their prayers showed how they entrusted their lives to God and how God in return responded to them. Here are some of the most powerful prayers in the Bible from the Old Testament that you can use as inspiration and encouragement to strengthen your faith: 

 

Jabez’s Prayer in the Bible 

From 1 Chronicles 4: 2-21, he was mentioned three times as part of Judah’s genealogy. The author of Chronicles puts a short emphasis on elaborating on his life. He gave a short history of Jabez’s name and his short prayer to God (1 Chronicles 4:9-10). Jabez’s relationship with God is noteworthy, for he is best known for his prayer request.

Jabez asked God to bless him, help him in his work, be with him in all that he did, and keep him from evil. He acknowledged God as the center of his life.  He sets an example of a relationship that we can use as an inspiration to strengthen our relationship with God.

 

1 Chronicles 4:10 Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.

The Story Behind Jabez’s Sincere Prayer

The name Jabez’s means ‘he causes pain’. His mother named him this because of the pain she had to endure during labor. And before a name defines that person’s future – on what they would become. But Jabez defied the testimony of his name and believed in the power of God. He wholeheartedly cried out to God with boldness and vulnerability. And he was honored because of his relationship to the Lord.

Jabez’s prayer was short but meaningful. He believed that he had a great purpose to accomplish, and he asked God to help. When he cried to the God of Israel, he acknowledged God’s lordship over his life. His life declares that God is the one and only true God, and all blessings come from him alone. When Jabez asked for God to ‘enlarge my border’, he wasn’t only referring to physical land or wealth and prosperity. He wanted God to expand his spiritual territory, to claim more generations for God’s kingdom. He also displayed great faith when he asked God to guide and lead him throughout his life. With his faith, God answered his prayers.

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

With Jabez’s prayer, we know that our name or history will not define our future if we are in God. We can use his prayer in our daily lives. When we pray, begin by acknowledging who God is and have a heart that invests in God’s blessings. Also, we can ask him to guide us as we broaden our territory for his kingdom. Aside from provisions, we can ask for his hands to protect and lead us through trials and circumstances that may come along the way.

This world will not define our identity but God. Our value and worth are secure in Him. Our God knows us better than anyone else, even ourselves. We can trust and hold on to his sovereignty. We can come to God in our most vulnerable state. And he can turn our weakness into his glory. 

 

Prophet Jonah’s Salvation Prayer in the Bible

Jonah, Big Fish

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Known as a disobedient prophet, Jonah, ran away instead of answering God’s call to prophesize to Nineveh. In Jonah 1:4 – 11, because of his disobedience, God sent a raging storm to the ship Jonah resided in. The sailors cast lots to determine who caused the tragedy, and it fell on Jonah. He convinced the crew of the ship to throw him overboard to calm the storm. Though they tried to spare the life of Jonah, the waves grew rougher so the men did as they were told, throwing Jonah into the sea.

However, God didn’t let Jonah die. Instead,  God provided a great fish to swallow him (Jonah 1:17). Instead of facing death, he was in the fish’s stomach for three days and three nights before being vomited onto dry land. During his time in the fish’s stomach, Jonah prayed to the Lord.

 

Jonah 2:2-9 

“In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. From deep in the realm of the dead I called for help, and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the depths, into the very heart of the seas, and the currents swirled about me all your waves and breakers swept over me.

 

I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight; yet I will look again toward your holy temple.’ The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit.

 

“When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. “Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them. But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’”

The Background of Jonah’s Prayer of Repentance

Jonah acknowledged his sin and turned to God in repentance. During his lowest low, he uttered a prayer that attributes to God’s power and glory. He started his prayer before God by comparing his situation as crying out from Sheol, the place of the dead. At that moment, he knew that he needed salvation. And God heard his plea. 

Jonah saw God’s sovereign hand over his troubles. As he conveyed his thoughts and fears during his horrific experience, he acknowledged God as the all-powerful Creator. He understood that this was God’s judgment for his disobedience to follow God’s call for him to prophesize to Nineveh. Regardless, he turned back to God, admitting that he has no hope without Him. During his hopeless time, Jonah saw the fish as God’s way of intervening and saving him from drowning. There was no assurance of what might happen, but he used the unexpected extension of his life to praise God.

In his prayer, he reiterated how his cry from beneath the earth still reached God. Despite having sinned, God’s mercy rescued him. He acknowledged that it is impossible to put his trust in other things other than God. In God’s presence, he found redemption. As he ended his prayer, he committed himself again to the Lord. He promised obedience and surrendered his fate completely into God’s hands. 

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

Sometimes we turn away from following God’s calling for us. We are hindered by our hesitations, fears, doubts, and worries. It weakens our faith and spirit. But we can cry out to God for help when we are in a state of spiritual death as long as we put our hope and trust in Him. Being a forgiving God as he is, despite what we did, God still hears our cries. Even in our sinfulness, our prayers are being heard by God. His mercy flows out readily to those who see God as their only hope. In Him and Him alone, we can find our salvation.

God is sovereign over our lives. He will use our lives and salvation for a purpose, and that is to continue to reach out for the next generations, to advance his kingdom. Jonah’s prayer teaches us that even when we fall short before God, He will always be there to redeem us. We can surrender our lives to Him and commit to following our callings.

 

Hannah’s Prayer in the Bible

Samuel, Hannah, Eli, Temple

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Another well-known story in the Bible is the story of a faith-filled woman, Hannah. She was blessed to have a husband, Elkanah, who loved her dearly. However, she was facing two big problems; she was in a polygamous marriage where the other wife hated her, and she was barren. Infertility is difficult and painful for any wife who longs for a child. During the time of Hannah, barrenness in cultural terms was a disappointment and a shame. It was a source of intense grief, as each family wanted to have offspring to carry on the family name. 

Hannah cried her heart out to the Lord in the temple of Shiloh. She was distressed and wept bitterly. She prayed earnestly to God to give him a son and vowed that she will dedicate her child to Him. The Lord granted her prayer and gave her a son. She called him Samuel, for she said, ‘I have asked for him from the Lord’ (1 Samuel 2:1 – 10). 

When Samuel was weaned, Hannah fulfilled her promise and dedicated him to the Lord. She took Samuel to the temple to live with the priest. When Hannah presented Samuel to Eli, she reminded him of the vow she made. Eli assured her he will take care of him. When Hannah and her husband went back home, she offered a prayer of thanksgiving to God. 

Hannah’s prayer is another striking prayer in the Bible that helps us look into God’s character deeply.

 

1 Samuel 2:1-10

“My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. “There is no one holy like the Lord;  there is no one besides you;  there is no Rock like our God.

 

“Do not keep talking so proudly or let your mouth speak such arrogance, for the Lord is a God who knows, and by him deeds are weighed.

 

“The bows of the warriors are broken, but those who stumbled are armed with strength. Those who were full hire themselves out for food, but those who were hungry are hungry no more. She who was barren has borne seven children, but she who has had many sons pines away.

 

“The Lord brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up. The Lord sends poverty and wealth; he humbles and he exalts. He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor.

 

“For the foundations of the earth are the Lord’s; on them he has set the world. He will guard the feet of his faithful servants, but the wicked will be silenced in the place of darkness.

 

“It is not by strength that one prevails; those who oppose the Lord will be broken. The Most High will thunder from heaven; the Lord will judge the ends of the earth. “He will give strength to his king  and exalt the horn of his anointed.”

The Beautiful Idea of Hannah’s Prayer of Praise

In 1 Samuel 2:1-10, after Hannah brought Samuel to the temple to live with the priests, she prayed to the Lord. She praised God for his answer for a son. Her prayer showed her confidence in God’s sovereignty and her thankfulness for everything He had done. She acknowledged God for being her stronghold and thanked Him for His unchanging grace. Despite all the unfortunate events that happened in her life, she put her hope in God. As she declared in 1 Samuel 2:2, there is no other rock like our God. He will never fail.

In 1 Samuel 2:3, Hannah most recalled Penninah’s arrogance and chiding against her. Instead of wanting revenge, she surrendered everything to God. She knew that God is all-knowing, and nothing can be hidden from him. He will judge all sin and pride. She let go and let God handle the judgment for all the wrong actions Peninnah made.

Hannah’s prayer manifested God’s sovereignty over the things she doesn’t control. She saw God as a rock and an all-knowing God. She also knew that God is sovereign over all affairs of his people and the Supreme Judge that administer perfect justice. Hannah praised God’s unique holiness, justice, and faithfulness. And she believed that God hears and answers prayers. He is in control of our lives. And those people who are oppressed and afflicted can turn to Him for refuge.

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

Some of us are probably facing oppression or affliction that has us questioning God’s work in our lives. Or maybe we have unanswered prayers and deepest longings that we’ve been asking God for so long. Sometimes, we are having a hard time seeing and understanding what God is doing in our lives. But, as this prayer in the Bible shows, we should put our confidence in God. He has ultimate control over all the events in our lives. Hannah teaches us to be thankful for all the ways God has blessed us. By praising Him, we acknowledged God’s sovereignty over the affairs of life. We have an assurance that God hears and answers our prayers. And let our response continue to honor and glorify God. 

Hannah also shows to us that we can resist the temptation of taking justice into our own hands. We can entrust to God the judgment for those who wronged us. He will weigh our deeds as well as the deeds of those people who wronged us. 

In this fast-paced world, where people come and circumstances change, it is difficult to find a solid foundation that will never change. God is our solid rock. With all the things happening around us, we can hold on to Him. Like what Hannah did, we should put our trust in Him. He is our trust-worthy, loving, and kind Father. We can run close to him with our brokenness, pain, heart-cries, and longings. He hears our struggles, and he is willing to help us. We can continue to hold on to God’s character. He is a God of the impossible, and through Him all things are possible. In God’s presence, we can find security.

 

David’s Prayer of Surrender 

King David, Praying

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David wrote many hymns and prayers in the Book of Psalms. One of the most beautiful prayers he wrote is Psalm 139. In this psalm, David declared his understanding of how God knew him personally. Contrary to what Pagans believed, their Gods are hostile and indifferent to men and women. David realized that God is relational. He cares for everyone for him to have searched the hearts of every man and woman. David allowed God to be the judge of those who opposed him. 

David prayed that God would search him for sin, to point out his sin and test his thoughts. In this way, David can then repent and ask for God’s forgiveness. He surrendered his life to God because he knew that God knows him better than anyone else, even himself. 

 

The Beauty Behind David’s Prayer in the Bible

David’s prayer showed how he understood that God is a relational God. He has perfect knowledge for his children, from all motions and actions inside and out are exposed and open before him. Use this verse as a prayer, for when you ask God to search your heart and your thoughts, you’ll walk closer with God. 

 

Psalm 139:1-12

You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.

 

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.

 

David knew that God is fully aware of his everyday life. God knew not only the smallest aspects of his daily life, but his thoughts were also not hidden from God. Even before David uttered the words he said, God already knew them. He was acquainted with all of David’s ways. God protected David so nothing could go against him. He knew and loved David completely, and he covered him with his hands of grace.

God is omnipresent. He is present everywhere. David knew that he can never escape from God. With this idea, David learned that whenever or wherever he goes, God is always there to guide and support him. 

 

Psalm 139:13-24

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you.

 

If only you, God, would slay the wicked! Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty! They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name. Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord, and abhor those who are in rebellion against you? I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies. Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

 

In Psalm 139:13-15, David declared how God knew him even before his birth. He exclaimed how God intricately and uniquely created him. God was already concerned about him during his conception. 

David’s hatred for his enemies was because of his zeal for God. He regarded God’s enemies as his enemies. His hatred was a desire for God’s righteous justice and not for his vengeance. He knew that God will deal with them. David prayed to God to search within his heart and point out any wrong motives that may have been behind his strong words.

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

Sometimes we don’t completely open ourselves to others because of our fear that they will discover something they won’t like. But God fully knows us from the biggest information or even the slightest detail about us. As Jesus said in Matthew 10:30, God even knows the number of hair strands in our head. He is also fully aware of our thoughts. But regardless, He still accepts and loves us the same. He is with us in every situation and trial, continuously loving, protecting, and guiding us. 

God is present everywhere. Wherever we go or whatever we do, we can never go far from His comforting presence. David’s prayer in the bible shows us how precious we are to God. He created us delicately and uniquely. So when you feel worthless, or your questioning or hate yourself, remember that God is ready and willing to work within you. 

Let God dwell within us, search our hearts and minds, and point out any wrong motives that have. We are probably doing actions we thought are okay, but the truth is that we are sinning against God. Allow God to reveal your sin and correct your heart, according to Him. Then, we can repent and be forgiven to continue to live an everlasting life in God.

Powerful Prayers from the New Testament

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The second section of the Bible, the New Testament, focuses on the life of Jesus Christ. It tells his story from his birth to His ministry, crucifixion, and resurrection. It divides the New Testament into three categories: the Gospels, the Epistles, and the Book of Revelations. Even though the books talk about the life of Jesus Christ, there are also striking prayers that we can take note of. The New Testament includes prayers from Jesus, the Apostles, and even the ordinary people.

Whenever we are weak, anxious, in doubt, or hopeless, we can always go back to God’s word. Let these prayers in the Bible give us strength and encouragement during our darkest times.

 

The Tax Collector’s Prayer in the Bible

Tax Collector, Pharisee

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The tax collector’s prayer is one of the most striking prayers in the Bible. During biblical times, tax collectors were recognized as sinners. When Rome occupied Israel, the taxes collected went to Rome. Tax collectors were encouraged to charge compensatory taxes. So, they often overcharged the taxes and created false charges of smuggling to extort more money. The people considered tax collectors as traitors and thieves. However, instead of persecuting them, Jesus treated tax collectors with grace and mercy. His prayer is his humble acceptance of the sin he made against God that made this prayer powerful.

Luke 18:13

“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

The Tax Collector’s Humble Prayer Before the Lord

The story of the tax collector is one of the famous parables Jesus told. During biblical times, the people who lived near Jerusalem went to the temple to pray. It was the center of their worship. Two men, a Pharisee, and a despised tax collector went to the temple to pray. In Luke 18:11, the Pharisee stood proudly by himself in front of many people. He prayed, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

The Pharisee didn’t go to the temple to pray but to announce to the public how righteous he was. His prayer focused on the good things he made for God. On the other hand, the tax collector couldn’t even lift his eyes to heaven and stood at the distance. He beat his chest in sorrow as he prayed to God recognizing his sin and begging for mercy. He humbly asked for God’s forgiveness. Here, Jesus explained that the tax collector and not the Pharisee went home justified before God (Luke 8:14). God will humble those who exalted themselves and exalt those who humbled themselves before God.

 

Application of The Bible Prayer 

This bible prayer teaches us that self-righteousness is dangerous. It leads to the pride that might cause us to despise others and prevents us from learning from God. The tax collector’s prayer teaches us to humble ourselves before God. His prayer should be our daily prayer since we need God’s mercy every day. God doesn’t look at our good deeds but in the status of our hearts. We shouldn’t let pride from our achievement cut us off from God. 

 

Paul’s Prayer for the Ephesians

Paul, Praying

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Paul was sent to prison in Rome as he preached God’s good news to the people. In Ephesians 3:13, he said that the Ephesians shouldn’t lose heart because of his trials, but rather they should feel honored for his sufferings. Paul wouldn’t have been placed in jail if he didn’t preach the message of salvation. But if he didn’t preach the message of salvation, the Ephesians would not have heard the good news, nor would they have been converted to Christianity. Paul endured the pain of persecution to preach the word and bring new believers to Christ.

Paul wrote a prayer for the Ephesians to help them look into God’s character for spiritual growth.

 

Ephesians 3:14-21 

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

 

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

 

Paul’s Prayer for Spiritual Growth 

Paul asked in his prayer to help the Ephesians to grow in their faith and love to God. It also emphasized that God wants them to have a relationship with other believers as well. The family of God includes all believers from past, present, and those who will believe in the future. Paul asked for the Ephesians to pray to believe in God’s unlimited resources to empower them with inner strength. 

In Ephesians 3:17-19, Paul said that Christ will dwell into their hearts as they put their trust in Him. God’s love is thorough, wide, long, high, and deep. It reaches every corner of our lives and the whole world. It is high as it rises to the heights of our celebration and great happiness. And his love is deep that it reaches to the depths of discouragement, despair, and even death. Paul wanted them to understand God’s love. Even if they don’t fully comprehend how marvelous his love is, they will experience that love fully. And this fullness is expressed only in Christ. In the union of Christ and his empowering Spirit, the people will be complete. In the last part, he gave glory to God and his mighty power and works. He praised God and described the timeless role of the church through generations.

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

Paul teaches us that obeying Christ is never easy. Sometimes, we experience persecution as we preach the Gospel to other people. But in Matthew 16:24, God calls us to take our crosses and follow him. We have to endure the pain to deliver God’s message to the entire world. Others willingly sacrificed and suffered to reap the benefit.

God doesn’t want us to enjoy the benefit of our salvation alone. We can interact with other believers since we are all part of God’s family. He promises his love and power to his church. God’s love goes beyond the highest high and the lowest low of the earth, even in our lives. Whenever we feel hopeless or isolated, remember that we can never be lost in God’s love. His love is unfailing and immeasurable. God’s love endures forever (Psalms 136). We can always rely on his love. It gives us the security that this world can never give us. We have the fullness of God available to us. We can find our identity and security in Him.

Let’s continue to enjoy that fullness as we strengthen our faith in God through prayer. Let this Paul’s prayer in the Bible be our guide to our spiritual growth as we get to know God more.

 

The Criminal’s Prayer in the Bible to Jesus at the Cross

Jesus Christ, Good Thief

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In Luke 23:32-43, two other criminals were also hanged along with Jesus Christ when he was crucified. One of two criminals mocked and teased Jesus for his inability to save himself, despite being called the Messiah. Jesus was sinless, but to fulfill the word, he was crucified to save us. On the other hand, the other criminal rebuked and asked the latter if he doesn’t fear God. He knew that in contrary to them, Jesus did nothing wrong. This criminal uttered a prayer that marked how strong his faith was to God.

Luke 23:42-23 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

The Criminal’s Prayer of Faith and Repentance

Jesus’ disciples fled and hid among the crowd when he was crucified. Even though they continued to love Jesus, their hopes for the kingdom were shattered. In Luke 24:21, Jesus’ disciples said, “We had hoped that he was the Messiah who had come to rescue Israel.” The people around Jesus lost all hope for they could not see how He could save them after death.

However, one of the two criminals that were crucified alongside Jesus believed in him. As he was about to die, he turned to Jesus and repented for his sins. He asked for God’s mercy. Jesus accepted the criminal’s repentance and forgave him, saying “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43). During the darkest time, the criminal had more faith compared to the disciples of Jesus. His faith went beyond the present shame and condemnation. 

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

The criminal’s prayer is one of the prayers in the Bible that teaches that our faith in Jesus Christ saves us. Our salvation doesn’t rely on our deeds. Even though Jesus Christ was mocked by the officials and his disciples fled away, the criminal’s faith remained strong. He looked at Jesus, not as a man who was dying with him, but he saw him as the Messiah. Compared to the rest of Jesus’ followers at that time, he had more faith in him. And Jesus accepted his repentance and promised him he would be with Jesus in Paradise. God is merciful and through his all-sufficient grace, we are saved. It is never too late to turn to God for repentance. Although our lives will be much useful if we turn to God early, those who repent at the last minute will be with him in paradise. 

As said in Ephesians 2:8-9, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.”. This is a reminder for us that God doesn’t look at our past, or the deeds we did in order for us to be saved. Through his unconditional love and amazing grace, we can find our salvation. Also, in John 3:16, God loves us so much that he gave his only son for our salvation. 

 

Stephen’s Last Prayer in the Bible 

St. Stephen, Stephen, Stoning

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Stephen’s death was one of the impactful events in the Bible. In Acts 7:55-58, Stephen saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. His vision supported Jesus’ claim. However, his claims angered the Jewish leaders who then condemned Jesus to death for blasphemy. They dragged him out and stoned him to death. And even with his last breath, the last prayer he uttered wasn’t even for himself but other people.

Acts 7:59-60 While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.

The Impact of Stephen’s Prayer

The members of the early church experienced persecution for telling the good news of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. Jesus promised that living for him might lead to trouble, and Stephen’s death is an example of Jesus’ prediction come true. The religious leaders were angry at Stephen for telling the truth about the good news. They stoned him to death for blasphemy without a proper trial.  When Jesus was with his disciples, he said that they will be hated and persecuted for believing in Him. However, that still didn’t stop them from their goal; reaching out to the lost for generations, bringing many to the Kingdom of God. And that was Stephen’s last prayer, he was still compassionate of bringing more people to God. His hope was for the conversion of those people who persecuted them, eventually.

Stephen’s prayer was like Jesus’ words on the cross (Luke 23:24). He prayed for God to forgive his enemies. He boldly held on to his belief in Christ. Interestingly, Stephen’s death wasn’t in vain. His death had a profound impact on Paul, who became the world’s greatest missionary. Paul, first known as Saul, was a persecutor of Christians. However, after his encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus, he became a follower of Christ (Luke 9). The bible describes Paul as a devoted follower of Christ and a gifted preacher.

 

Applying the Bible Prayer to Your Daily Life

Along our faith journey, we might encounter people who don’t want to hear the truth and try to silence us. One of the most powerful prayers in the bible, Stephen’s prayer teaches us to be bold in our faith in God. We should keep honoring God with our conduct and words, hoping that others may see Christ in us. Even though many may turn against us and our message, some will follow Him. Jesus Christ said that being his follower is not an easy journey as we will encounter persecutions along the way. 

Living out our faith boldly will expose the sinfulness of others. Our words of truth might pierce their souls. Some may feel convicted and yield to the leading of the Holy Spirit, but others might become angry and harden their hearts. However, regardless of our experiences, we shouldn’t abandon our faith when persecuted. We shouldn’t fear that they will reject us because God is working on their hearts. Like Paul, God can change someone who we thought impossible to reach and change.

 

Jesus’ Prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane

Jesus Christ, Garden of Gethsemane, Praying

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Our sins separate us from God, who is holy and righteous. The Scripture teaches that no amount of human goodness, works, or activity can earn us the acceptance of God. We all fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). But God loves us so much that he sent his one and only son, Jesus Christ, into the world to save us from our sins. God is perfect love and full of grace and mercy. Therefore, with His love and grace, He hasn’t left us without hope and a solution. He made a perfect plan to save us and connect with him, through his Son, Jesus Christ. 

Before Jesus fulfilled God’s plan of salvation, he prayed to God in the garden of Gethsemane. He was in great anguish over his approaching physical pain and separation from God. Though Jesus knew his crucifixion was inevitable and of God’s will, His human nature still struggled. His prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane showed his humble submission to God regardless of his suffering.

Matthew 26:39 Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

Jesus not only prayed once but twice that God’s will be done. Many people don’t understand the reason for their suffering, but Jesus knew His future would hold suffering. Yet, Jesus still prayed “let your will be done”. This shows Jesus had firm trust in God’s plans, and He willingly obeyed.

Matthew 26:42 He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”

 

Jesus Agonizes in the Garden

Jesus’ prayer in the garden reveals his terrible suffering. He knew what lay ahead of him, and the reason he needed to do it.  The anguish he felt was worse than death, but he still paid for our sins by dying on the cross. However, though there was pain, Jesus reaffirmed his desire to accomplish God’s will by saying God’s will to be done. He firmly trusted God’s plan and obeyed him regardless of all his struggles. Jesus’ relationship with God the Father gave him the strength to obey. Jesus took our sins upon himself to save us from suffering and separation from God.

 

Applying Bible Prayer in Daily Life

God loves us unconditionally, so much so that He gave his Son, Jesus Christ, to save us from our sins. Through Jesus, we can freely go to God. Even though Jesus struggled and agonized before the accomplishment of God’s plans of salvation, he yielded, submitted, and surrendered to Him. In times when we suffer, we wish to know the reason why we had to encounter this or the future. We think that it is better for us to understand the reason for our agony. Jesus knew what lay ahead of him and the reason for it, but he still let God’s will reigned. Even so, Jesus’ struggle was intense, more wrenching than the challenges that we face. He trusted in God’s plan. 

Sometimes it might be difficult for us to follow God’s plan, we might suffer along the process. Because of the anguish Jesus experienced, he can relate to our suffering. Jesus found strength in his relationship with God to obey Him. It is the same with our lives, God is the source of our strength. We can deepen and strengthen our relationship with God. Regardless of the circumstances, we are facing, let’s have a firm trust in God. We should follow Jesus’ example and allow God’s will to be done in our lives. And it takes prayer and obedience each step of the way. 

 

Powerful Prayers in the Bible

Woman, Praying, Bible

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Many powerful prayers in the Bible shaped the faith and lives of the people before. Among these prayers, we saw how God responded to them. Whether it’s a prayer of faith, request, thanksgiving, praise, worship, or any type of prayer, God hears them. However, we shouldn’t hesitate to go to God whenever we are in doubt, pain, anguish, or we need prayers for peace. Or we can also simply worship and give praise to God through our prayers. Additionally, when we need inspiration for our prayers, we can always read the Bible. There are various prayers in the Bible that help us understand and know the marvelous love and power of God.