What Do People Pray in the New Testament?
In an earlier post, I said we need to evaluate our prayers with those of the Bible. You could probably group them differently than I did. Keeping in mind that some things are simply descriptive, not prescriptive, here is the list, starting with what I’ve called “Prayers to God.” Some I have quoted the verse, others I have summarized.
I’ll follow this up with Prayers for Our Needs, Prayers for the Church, and Prayers for Others.
PRAYERS TO GOD
Prayer of Praise
Praise the God of comfort who comforts us in our troubles (2 Cor. 1:3).
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ (Eph. 1:3).
To him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work in us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! (Eph. 3:20-21).
Prayer for God’s Name
Hallowed be your name (Matt. 6:9).
Glorify the Son
Jesus prays in His high priestly prayer for the Father to glorify Him (Jn. 17:1-5).
Prayer for God’s Kingdom
Kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:10).
Prayer for God’s Will
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:10).
Jesus prayed in Gethsemane for God’s will to be done (Matt 26:39).
We pray that you will not do anything wrong, that you will do what is right even though we seem to have failed (2 Cor. 13:7).
Epaphras always prays for the Colossians. He wrestles in prayer that they might stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured (Col. 4:12).
The Spirit helps in our weakness. The Spirit intercedes through wordless groans (Rom. 8:26). He intercedes for God’s people according to the will of God.
Prayer that Seeks God First
Seek and you will find (Matt. 7:7).
Prayer that Questions God
Jesus prayed on the cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46).
Prayer for Mercy and Forgiveness of Sins
Forgive us as we have forgiven (Matt. 6:12).
If you hold anything against anyone, forgive them so the Father will forgive your sins (Mk. 11:25).
If two of you ask for anything having to do with forgiveness of sins, it will be done (Matt. 18:19).
The tax collector prayed for God’s mercy while the Pharisee prayed he wasn’t like the tax collector (Lk. 18:9-14).
Peter tells Simon to pray for forgiveness (Acts 8:22).
Those who are sick and are anointed will be healed, and if they have sinned, they will be forgiven (Jam. 5:15). We are to confess our sins to one another and pray so we may be healed (Jam. 5:16).
If we see those who commit sins that don’t lead to death, pray and God will give them life (1 Jn. 5:16).
Prayer of Thanksgiving
Anna, the prophetess, gave thanks to God for sending the Messiah (Lk. 2:38).
Jesus thanks God for hearing him (Jn. 11:41-42).
Paul thanks God for the famous faith of the Romans (Rom. 1:8).
Paul thanks God for the Corinthians because of the grace given to them in Christ Jesus (1 Cor. 1:4).
Paul thanks God that he speaks in tongues more than all of the Corinthians (1 Cor. 14:18).
Thanks be to God! He gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ! (1 Cor. 15:57).
Thanks be to God who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere (2 Cor. 2:14).
Always give thanks to God the Father for everything (Eph. 5:20).
Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him (Col. 3:17).
Give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thess. 5:18).