In the apostolic prayers, Paul focuses on gifts, fruits, and wisdom. He prays for the release of the ministry gifts of the Holy Spirit so that revival breaks out. He prays for the fruits of Godly character in the lives of those in the Church. He prays for wisdom in the Church in order that believers are able to search out the mysteries and knowledge of God so that we may know Him better. He prays these prayers for the glory of God so that His Kingdom may come and His will be done in our churches, cities, and nations.
Paul reveals to us in his prayers, the power of intercession and the high focus we should have in prayer for the spirit of revelation. He prayed that the Church would come to a more full experience of the knowledge of God in active intimacy (Ephesians 1:17-19) as they walked out these spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3-14). He wanted the Church to encounter God deeply. We need our eyes enlightened. We need divine encounters with God. Look at what happen when we pray these apostolic prayers regularly:
- Our hearts are supernaturally influenced by God. This helps us have a sustained lifestyle of pursuing God’s glory. We need the Spirit to do this, to enable our human capacity to receive more of God (1 Corinthians 2:12-14). We need to have our hearts fully alive!
- We receive divine revelation to enlighten the eyes of our understanding. We begin to see God unveiled experientially in our understanding (John 17:3; Ephesians 1:18).
- We receive confidence and hope in our individual calling from God. These divine assignments encompass all of time and eternity. We cannot walk firmly in our assignment in this age unless we are anchored in eternity (Ephesians 1:17-18; 2:10; Colossians 1:9-10).
- We receive understanding of our spiritual identity. We discover the glory and wealth of being God’s inheritance. We understand that we are the focus of God’s affection (John 15:9; 17:23).
- We are empowered to live our life in God (Eph. 1:17-19). He gives us His resurrection strength (Ephesians 1:20-21). We have the authority of Jesus as we resist sin and satanic opposition. All God’s power works through and for the good of His Church because all things are subject to Christ (Ephesians 1:20-21; Colossians 1:16; Philippians 2:6-11).
Praying these apostolic prayers of Paul’s are powerful. He had a brilliant mind but was deceived and, out of his extreme zeal, had been persecuting the Church. But suddenly, Paul had a supernatural encounter with God that changed everything. His prayers are anointed with the power of God. His prayers are model prayers.
Pray them on a regular basis. You can read them on pages 129-131. Have several copies in your prayer room. Certain phrases in each prayer are highlighted to help your intercessors isolate a phrase for the antiphonal singers. This is what we do here daily at IHOP in Kansas City.
We must seek to obey God as we fill our hearts with His Word and ask for revelation. The apostolic prayers will undoubtedly bring you up to a new level in prayer and intercession. They will help you see how God views the Church and each one of us. Begin by praying them in your own personal life, and then integrate them in your own prayer meetings.
These are only a few examples of how you can pray the Word of God. Praying the Psalms is another wonderful way to praise and worship God through His Word. The Psalms contain many different types of prayer such as adoration, supplication, worship, praise, confession, and intercession. You may want to sing the Word. As you read a chapter in the Bible, you may want to turn every verse into a personal prayer for spiritual growth, physical or emotional healing, or some other concern in your life or the life of another. You may want to rephrase the Word as you pray it back to God.
There are so many creative ways to pray the Word. The knowledge of this great treasure we have should cause each one of us to rejoice. It is far more valuable than silver or gold. God’s Word is life-giving. Let’s use it daily in our prayers. Let’s learn to pray it out loud for spiritual breakthrough.
“I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.” Psalm 119:14-16