- Pray Without Ceasing – This verse is sandwiched in between two other equally difficult verses to put into practice. Verse 16 says, “Rejoice evermore”; and verse 18 says, “In every thing give thanks…”. What is being addressed here is a moment-by-moment attitude of rejoicing and gratitude to the One Who has given us “every good gift and every perfect gift”. Likewise, God commands true believers to maintain a constant attitude of prayer regarding each conversation, each decision, each thought, each action, even the interruptions, problems, and challenges of that day as an opportunity to rejoice, thank and petition God for His mercy. God the Holy Spirit also empowers true believers to have that attitude.
1 Thes 5:16-18 “Rejoice evermore. 17Pray without ceasing. 18In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
Jam 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”
Rom 1:8-9 “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all [Paul thanks God for His work of faith in the lives of the believers in Rome and acknowledges them in his prayers] , that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers.”
- Pray Earnestly
Jam 5:17 “Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.”
Luke 18:1-8 “And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 2Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 3And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 4And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 5Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 6And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. 7And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”
Luke 11:5-8 “And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; 6For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? 7And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. 8I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.”
Gen 32:24-29 “And Jacob [representing the elect of God] was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. 25And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him. 26And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. 27And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. 28And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. 29And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there.”
Mark 10:46-48 “And they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging. 47And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me. 48And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou son of David, have mercy on me.
Matt 15:21-28 “Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon. 22And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil [picture of being in Satan’s bondage and have in need of Salvation]. 23But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. 24But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. 26But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. 27And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table [being humble and persistent]. 28Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.