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Prayers in the Old Testament

I enjoy reading and studying the prayers of patriarchs, prophets and other people in the Old Testament.  There’s a lot we can learn if we spend some quality time studying their prayers.

We’ll start sharing some insights that can help us and enhance our prayer life.  If you would like to get a jump start, read Jeremiah’s prayers (17:14-18; 32:16-25). Read King Jehoshaphat’s prayer (2 Chronicles 20:1-12). Read Daniel’s prayer (Daniel 9:1-19).

This will be a long series, so get ready; you will be blessed.

As always, thanks for visiting!

thePrayerCoach

Prayer of Affirmation

Prayers of affirmation take biblical truths (scriptures) and affirm (repeat, confirm, declare, acknowledge) them back to God. (Saying to Him what He said to you in His Word). He honors His Word. Prayers of affirmation are also expressions of agreement with God’s Word.

Prayers of affirmation are essential for the believer because faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17).  When you affirm what God’s Word says, you can activate your faith. Not only that, but you renew your mind by affirming God’s word. It will help you embrace the truth, no matter how you feel.  It’s about hearing the Word of God, agreeing with it and recalling it back to God.  Many Scriptures can be declared out loud as affirmations simply by personalizing them and agreeing with them.

Here are a few examples of affirmations taken from the Scriptures:

“I am God’s child for I am born again of the incorruptible seed of the Word of God.” – 1 Peter 1:23

“I am strong in the Lord.” Ephesians 6:10

“I am complete in Christ.” Colossians 2:10

“I am firmly rooted, built up, established in my faith and overflowing with thanksgiving.” Colossians 2:7

“I have a right to come boldly before the throne of grace to find mercy and grace in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

“I have the peace of God which passes all understanding.” Philippians 4:7

“I have the mind of Christ.” Philippians 2:5, 1 Corinthians 2:16

“I shall overcome because greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world.” -1 John 4:4

“I can do all things in Christ because He strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

“I have been redeemed, forgiven and I am a recipient of God’s lavish grace.” Ephesians 1:7

“I have been given a spirit of power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Prayer of Confession

I acknowledged my sin to You,
And my iniquity I have not hidden.
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,”
And You forgave the iniquity of my sin.” —Psalm 32:5

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9)

I am so thankful that Father God is kind and forgiving. After all, it was kindness and unconditional love for us that He made Jesus Christ, who had no sin be sin for us so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21). And He continues to forgive all who will acknowledge/confess their sin to Him now.

Confession is an essential form of prayer (communication with God); it is also a serious aspect of the Christian lifestyle. When we acknowledge or confess (admit) our sins, ask for forgiveness and repent, God is faithful and just to forgive us, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). 

In order to confess/acknowledge our sins, we should be sensitive to the work of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit convicts us of our wrongdoing; He shows us the sin in our life so that we deal with it. If we don’t confess our sins, receive God’s forgiveness and cleansing power, we will continue to commit sinful acts.  If we continue in sin, we cannot continue walking in the light and enjoying relationship with Christ. Sin can be compared to an infection that if goes untreated will spread and result in death.  Spiritually speaking, if we don’t confess our sins to the Lord and allow Him to cleanse us, we risk being disconnected from Him and dying spiritually.

We should prayerfully examine our lives frequently, daily if necessary, to make sure we don’t allow sin to fester in our lives.  I might also note that sins of the heart (jealousy, envy, covetousness) are sometimes easier to overlook than sinful acts such as fornication, adultery, theft, murder.  Sin cannot be classified or categorized as “small”  and “big”.  We must confess all sin.

Also, use Scriptures when confessing your sins to God.  Here is an example of a prayer of confession:

Heavenly Father,

I come to you in the Name of Jesus Christ, my Savior and Lord.  I ask You to have mercy upon me, Father, according to your loving kindness. Wash me and I shall be clean; purify my heart, cleanse me from all unrighteousness as you said in your word according to 1 John 1:9.  Lord, I confess I sinned against you; I acknowledge my disobedience.  I ask that you forgive me for grumbling and complaining and not walking in faith.  I know that without faith it is impossible to please you.  My desire is to please you, Father. Help me control my anger and have the right attitude that reflects your character. I am sorry;I turn away from my sin toward you in all honesty. Create a clean heart in me and renew my spirit to remain loyal to you.  Thank you, Father for forgiving me and cleansing me.  In Jesus’ Name with thanksgiving. Amen.

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I recommend that after you pray, remain in silence to listen for Him to speak to your spirit concerning your confession and request for forgiveness.  Make sure you confess all known or revealed sin; you may want to be specific about your sin (in your private prayer time, of course).  After you’ve finished praying,  He may give you Scriptures, or speak in a still small whisper to assure and comfort you.  However, if He does not speak immediately after your prayer,  let your faith and the Word give you the assurance that your prayer was heard, and you are forgiven, if you prayed earnestly in faith. 

Overwhelmed by trouble?

Listen to my prayer, O God.
Do not ignore my cry for help!
2 Please listen and answer me,
for I am overwhelmed by my troubles.
3 My enemies shout at me,
making loud and wicked threats.
They bring trouble on me
and angrily hunt me down.

My heart pounds in my chest.
The terror of death assaults me.
5 Fear and trembling overwhelm me,
and I can’t stop shaking.
6 Oh, that I had wings like a dove;
then I would fly away and rest!
7 I would fly far away
far from this wild storm of hatred.

Life happens! Day after day or week after week there is something to deal with that can cause overwhelming anguish.

Have you ever felt like God was ignoring your cry for help? Have you ever felt like God doesn’t care about your troubles?

I know I’m not the only one that has felt like the psalmist in the above Scriptures.   Have you ever just wanted to get away from it all—ESCAPE? That would  be the easy way out…fly away from it all. But notice what the psalmist said, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove; then I would fly away and rest! I would fly far away far from this wild storm of hatred.”  But the truth is we don’t have wings like a dove to fly away!  Since we don’t have wings flying away is not an option to escape from troubles. Just in case you’re thinking suicide is a way of escape….No! It’s an easy way out with eternal damnation (Judas, the son of perdition, Jesus’ betrayer, Matthew 27:3-5, John 17:12), and leaves an overwhelming burden on others to feel guilty and responsible for your lack of faith and feelings of hopelessness and despair due to life’s troubles. Don’t let the cares of life, guilt from past mistakes make you take the easy way out! Fight for your life and surrender your all to Christ…He loves you even if you “feel” like He does.  It’s by faith that you receive His gift of salvation, not by feelings.

So how do you deal with troubles? How do you deal with the violence and wickedness you see?  How do you handle broken relationship—friends who are now your enemies?  Although it may feel as if God is ignoring you, believe that He hears and will answer.  Don’t stop believing; don’t stop praying. Do just as the psalmist said in verse sixteen, “But I will call on God, and the LORD will rescue me. Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress and the LORD hears my voice.”  And he continues in verse twenty-two, “Give your burdens to the LORD, and He will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.”

Jesus Christ is our example. Judas was His friend turned enemy and betrayed Him.  Jesus was overwhelmed with anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane, but He continued to cry out to Father.  But more important, Jesus committed Himself to the Father, who rescued Him (Luke 23:46), and rewarded Him.  And, because Jesus was rescued and rewarded, we reap the benefits (Isaiah 53:10-12).

Yes! Life happens! Day after day, week after week there is something to deal with that can cause overwhelming anguish, but as Believers in the all-powerful God, we continue to cry out for help, and believe He will rescue us.  Our escape has already been provided. Our life is hidden with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3). We don’t live on feelings, we live by faith in the Son of God

Persist in prayer!

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