The Spiritual Weapon of Prayer
In his discourse on the armor of God
, the apostle Paul did not compare prayer
to any specific piece of armor. However, Paul included it because of its great importance in the believer's battle against the spiritual forces of evil. Like the other weapons we have studied, prayer is critical to the success of our spiritual battles.
First and foremost, we are to make praise
a top priority in prayer (see Psalm 69:30, 100:4). Our God is worthy of all honor and glory. "Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever"
(Revelation 5:13). The devil won't remain long in an atmosphere of exaltation, praise, and worship for the Lord God, Who has defeated all the powers of darkness.
Secondly, prayer should include supplication
, which is our requests and petitions. "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be
made known unto God."
(Philippians 4:6). In presenting our requests, however, let us have the attitude of "Not my will, but thine, be done"
(Luke 22:42). We may think we know what we need, but the Lord may not answer our prayers the way we would like (and we'll thank Him later!). We can't go wrong asking for God's grace and mercy to face the situation at hand. "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need"
Thirdly, prayer can involve intercession
, which means standing in the gap
for another person (see Ezekiel 22:30; Acts 8:24; Galatians 6:2). We can pray for our enemies (Matthew 5:44; Luke 6:28), pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ (Acts 12:5; I Thessalonians 5:25), and pray for those who need healing (James 5:14). The Bible says, "Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another,
that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much"
There are many more verses in the Bible about prayer. We can pray anytime: "Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice"
(Psalm 55:17). We can confess our sins to God in prayer (I John 1:9). We are not to use "vain repetitions" in our prayers (Matthew 6:7). We are to pray without ceasing (Romans 12:12; I Thessalonians 5:17).
Let us not underestimate the powerful spiritual weapon
that prayer is. Yes, prayer is communication with our Heavenly Father, but it is also a way for us to actively participate in fighting the spiritual battles that wage in the heavenlies. "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood,
but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places"
This prayer is a guideline which summarizes the truths presented in this teaching.
Dear Heavenly Father, in the name of Jesus, I put on the whole armor of God, that I may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. My struggle is not against people (flesh and blood), but against principalities, powers, the rulers of
the darkness of this world, and against spiritual wickedness in high places. These are the spiritual forces of evil that want
to destroy me, my family, and the Body
Therefore, I take unto myself the whole armor of God, that I may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
I buckle the belt of truth around my
waist. Your Word, Lord, is truth. Help me to be firmly established in the truth of Your Word and to be a person of truth
and integrity. Please give me the words to say when people ask why I follow Jesus.
I graciously acknowledge Your gift of the breastplate of righteousness. Thank
You for giving me the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Help me to guard my heart with all diligence and keep a pure heart toward You. Because I am not perfect, You graciously protect me because of my faith in Jesus Christ. Thank You for disciplining me as Your child and that You are working Your righteousness in me.
I shod my feet with the preparation of
the Gospel of peace. In Christ Jesus, I am at peace with You, Father. Help me to abide in Christ and let Your peace rule in my heart, casting all my care and anxiety on You because You care for me. As I pursue peace with all men (Psalm 34:14), help me to live in peace with my family and other believers without compromising my relationship with You. May my feet go to proclaim the Gospel of peace as a minister of reconciliation. May my feet stay away from people, places, and situations that tempt me.
I lift up the shield of faith. Help me to stand firm in my faith and deflect all the fiery arrows of doubt, despair, and hopelessness that the enemy shoots at me. Reveal Yourself to me, O Lord, as I study Your Word. Help me to learn the language of Your Word so I can hear and understand when You speak to me.
I put on the helmet of the hope of salvation. You, Heavenly Father, protect my mind from the enemy's blows of doubt and discouragement, for You are my hope and salvation. My trust is in You alone. Help me to fill my mind and heart with Your Word, so that the enemy's attempts to get my mind on the lusts and cares of this world will fail.
I pick up the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Thank You for giving me Your Word. Help me to dedicate time to studying, memorizing, and meditating upon it. Help me to speak the Word, pray the Word, and sing the Word so that it becomes a part of my life. Teach me how to wield the sword with precision in the face of enemy snares and attacks.
Thank You, Heavenly Father, for the spiritual armor You have provided for my protection. Your Word says that greater
is He that is in me than he that is in the world (I John 4:4). Help me to stay alert against the enemy's wiles and to be consistent in prayer. Amen.
Jesus told His disciples, "Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves"
(Matthew 10:16). Spiritual struggles and attacks of the enemy are inevitable for the Christian, but God has provided His protection. Indeed, "We are more than conquerors though Him who loved us"
The application of the whole armor of God is not a one-time lesson; it is a way of life. "But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil"
(II Thessalonians 3:3). By learning to wear and wield these powerful armaments, we can resist the tactics of the devil, and, when the fight is over, still be standing.