In Paul’s teaching on prayer in 1 Timothy 2:1–4, one of the major thrusts is praying for those in authority. According to Paul’s reasoning, we want good government that allows us to live “peaceful and quiet lives”—ultimately freeing us to evangelize those who are lost.
Paul would have been amazed that Christians could someday actually take part in selecting those leaders. I believe he would have been even more amazed (and appalled) that many of those Christians didn’t even bother to get involved in selecting those leaders for the purposes of God to be fulfilled.
Praying for the electoral process is the first step in seeing the fulfillment of what Paul is writing about to Timothy. I don’t believe we should wait for a leader to be selected before we move into obedient prayer for those in authority. In prayer, we invite the Lord into the process of electing those leaders who will ultimately allow us to lead “peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness” (v. 2).
So why pray for the elections? There are a number of compelling reasons:
- The Bible commands us to pray for those who are in leadership, which would include those who are vying to become
- Godly leaders can help slow the erosion of religious liberties in our land, providing an increased window of opportunity for the Church to pray and evangelize.
- The selection of leaders who understand and lead according to God’s righteous standards can bring great blessing to a nation (Prov. 14:34).
- Scripture also says, “For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers” (Prov. 11:14). The determination of who leads our nation will also determine who advises that leader and how we are guided.
Lord God, Your Word is clear that we are to pray for those in authority over us! I ask that You would guide my intercession through the power of Your Spirit so that I have great love even for those leaders I strongly disagree with. Raise up leaders who would seek Your face, who search for Your wisdom and not their own answers, and those who desire our nation to turn back to You. Give favor to Your men and women of integrity, who speak Your truth and who are unafraid to stand for righteousness.
–adapted from With One Cry: A Renewed Challenge to Pray for America by David Butts. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God for his patience. Thank the Lord for being patient with you and allowing you to come to repentance in Christ (2 Pet. 3:9). Confess impatience you have felt or expressed toward God or other people. Commit yourself to bearing the fruit of patience through the power of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22). Ask God to fill you with his patience.
Impatience is a hallmark of our me-first society. Pray that the church will have a softening influence, proclaiming and demonstrating a patient “Jesus-first” message. Ask that the church will be patient even in the midst of affliction (Rom. 12:12).
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