The Objectives of a Productive Prayer Life
There are several objectives of prayer, which the child of God must be aware of.
First, the Christian is taught to pray for the deliverance from his or her enemies (Ps. 54:1-3; 55:1-3; 88:1-3; 102:1-2; 109:1-5; Acts 12:5; Philippians 1:19).
This particular objective entails that God protect us from our enemies, but also that we pray for our enemies (Matthew 5:44-45; Luke 6:28).
The Lord Jesus Christ issued a command to His disciples to love their enemies, which shocked those who heard Him but this was the manner in which the Father and He loved the entire human race (Matthew 5:43-48).
The Lord Jesus Christ explains in Matthew 5:44-48 that there is no virtue in loving those who love you but rather His disciples were to imitate God who loves His enemies, those who are obnoxious sinners to Him.
God loved all of us while we were yet sinners and antagonistic to Him.
Romans 5:8 But, God (the Father) proves His own divine-love for the benefit of all of us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died as a substitute for the benefit of all of us. (My translation)
God treated us in grace and mercy because of His great love meaning that because of His great love He withheld judgment and bestowed on all of us unmerited blessings because of our faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:4-5).
It is impossible for anyone to obey the command to love one’s enemies unless one is a believer meaning he has responded to God’s love for him in the Person and Work of Christ by obeying the command to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ in order to receive eternal salvation (John 3:16).
Only those who have responded to God’s love for them in the Person and Work of Jesus Christ have the capacity to love their enemies, their neighbor as themselves and to love one another as Christ loved.
The believer who comprehends and acknowledges and is conscious and accepts by faith that he is the object of God’s love and was treated in grace and unconditional love while yet an enemy of God will receive the capacity to obey the command to love his enemies.
The Christian is taught to pray for the spiritual and temporal needs of members of the royal family of God (Ephesians 6:18; Col 1:9-10; 1 Thessalonians 5:25; 2 Thessalonians 1:11; James 5:16; 3 John 2; 2 Co 13:9; Romans 15:30-31).
They are to pray for the spiritual growth of members of the body of Christ (Colossians 4:12; Ephesians 1:15-19; 1 Thessalonians 3:9-10; Philippians 1:9; Colossians 1:9; 2 Corinthians 13:9).
The Christian is encouraged to particularly pray for the sick in the royal family of God (Jam 5:14-15a).
They are taught to pray for those in authority (1 Timothy 2:1-2).
The Christian is taught to pray for the proliferation of the Word of God in one’s community, country, and world (2 Thessalonians 3:1).
We should habitually pray that the Word of God increase and spread throughout the world.
For unbelievers, may the Gospel reach their ears, and for believers, may an accurate teaching of God’s Word encompass their lives.
Another objective is praying that God protect us and other believers from getting involved in evil.
Also, we should pray that believers apply the Word of God, so that God may be glorified and divine-good may increase (2 Corinthians 13:7).
The Word of God does not condemn praying for material prosperity and good physical health; rather, we are encouraged to pray for our prosperity and the prosperity of others (3 John 1:2).
The Christian is taught to pray for the sanctification of physical food (1 Timothy 4:4-5); hence, we say grace.