The Apostle Paul Asks For Prayer

The Apostle Paul Asks For Prayer

In the last post we started considering the various passages considering how important it is to have people praying for you.  Here are a couple more passages where the Apostle Paul asks for prayer fore himself.

The Apostle Paul Asks the Ephesians Church to Pray For Him

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassadorin chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

This is an interesting prayer request for several reasons.  The apostle Paul asks for prayer that his ministry, his preaching, will be courageous and fearless.  As I thought about this request for prayer, I wondered: how many times have I shied away from a subject, when I should have been bold?  How many times have I prayed that words would be given me?

A picture came to mind of the last time I preached at a rescue mission.  If you’ve never been in one, let me describe it.  It is a place where unhoused people can get a free night’s lodging, especially on a cold night, and a warm meal.  Most of the people there are homeless because  of drug issues or mental illness.  But before they can eat, they have to attend a worship service.  I’ve preached at a few of those services. and it is a challenge for me, because I don’t have their experience, and so, I hardly know what words to use.  What if I had asked my prayer partners to give me words to speak?

The Apostle Paul asks the Thessalonians for Prayer

Medieval Church In Thessalonica

2 Thessalonians 3:1,2

3 As for other matters, brothers and sisters, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.

1 Thessalonians 5:25

25 Brothers and sisters, pray for us.

This is a prayer for effectiveness of his ministry.  He wants people to come to faith and to be built up in their faith.  Catch this importance here: Paul felt that there was a connection between the peoples’ prayers, and his effectiveness as a missionary.

Have you ever made that connection?  It’s not just your prayers that will result in effectiveness, but the prayers of those who are praying for you.

The Apostle Paul Asks for Prayer from Philemon

Consider this last of Paul’s requests.

22 And one thing more: Prepare a guest room for me, because I hope to be restored to you in answer to your prayers.

The book of Philemon is a personal one.  Paul was asking Philemon to set free his runaway slave, Onesimus.  Paul had come to know the slave in Rome, and Onesimus became a Christian. The Apostle Paul assumes that Philemon was praying for him, for his release in particular.  And now he assumes that Philemon will continue to pray for him.  And so, he asks for a big thing, that he would release Onesimus from slavery, or, at the very least, not to punish him for running away.

Lessons From Paul’s Request For Prayer

There are several things to note about Paul’s requests for prayer.

  • Paul believed that prayer for himself and his ministry was important.  He knew that the secret of effectiveness in his overall mission was connect to people praying for him.  Do you believe that?
  • Secondly, Paul tells us that when we pray for people in mission, we are, in effect, joining them in their work.  That is really a fantastic thing, don’t you think?  When I pray for my friends in Africa who are working in a medical hospital, I am one with them in the work.  Also, when I pray for the country of Haiti and the people that I know working there, I have a part in their ministry.
  • These things are also true when I pray for my pastor, a Sunday School teacher, a Youth Group worker, a Counselor at a day camp, a teacher, etc.


You need to recruit and resource people whom God calls to join in the ministry by praying for you.  In the next post we’ll look at a process to follow in order to do this.

In the meantime, here’s another reflection on this.