The inspired apostle Paul affirmed that prayer helps. In writing to the church at Corinth, Paul described how there had been a time, in Asia, when he was in danger and facing the possibility of death (2 Corinthians 1:8). However, Paul was delivered from death by God and also by the prayers of the brethren in Corinth. Notice 2 Corinthians chapter 8, verse 11: “Ye also helping together by prayer for us, that for the gift bestowed upon us by the means of many persons thanks may be given by many on our behalf.” Observe from this verse that the Corinthians had been “helping….by prayer.” Paul was delivered from trouble, at least in part, because of the prayers of the Corinthians. Prayer helps!
It is true that prayer helps the righteous, those who are following the Lord’s will: “For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil” (1 Peter 3:12). God hears and answer prayer. Prayer helps!
The following are some specific ways in which prayer helps:
Prayer helps in times of danger and trouble. In the context of 2 Corinthians 1, Paul was facing danger and trouble, but prayer helped. Prayer still helps today. It is appropriate, therefore, to pray for the safety of missionaries who travel abroad preaching the Word, for families traveling on summer vacation, for military men and women who are fighting for our freedom. Prayer helped to deliver Paul from danger and it will still help today.
Prayer helps in temptation. Jesus told His disciples to “pray” that they enter not into temptation (Luke 22:40, 46). James admonished: “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you” (James 4:7-8). When a child of God is battling temptation, if he will draw nigh to God in prayer and ask for strength to overcome, God will provide a way to escape each temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Prayer helps with anxiety and worry. Scripture says, “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7). This text instructs Christians to worry about nothing and to pray about everything. God’s people often forfeit peace which passes understanding, all because we do not cast our cares upon Him (1 Peter 5:7).
Prayer helps. The key is that Christians must “ask in faith” (James 1:5-7). If one prays, doubting that God will hear and answer, there is no reason to pray. In light of these verses, let us all realize that prayer truly helps! “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Chapman church of Christ