What is the power of prayer?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
The idea that power is inherent in prayer is a very popular one. According to the Bible, the power of prayer is, quite simply, the power of God, who hears and answers prayer. Consider the following...

July 01 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Al Mark
I did a study on Ephesians 3 which centers on this topic. Paul was about to pray for the Ephesians, but felt compelled to explain what truths he was going to pray for, before actually praying.

He starts off with the mystery of Christ - Jew and Gentile together in one body, and this mystery was hidden over the ages. If you can imagine two groups of people with the greatest animosity towards each other suddenly fellowshipping together, that is the extent of the mystery. He goes on to explain why he was a prisoner of the gospel, what was the plan, the preaching, its purpose and its priveleges.

The greek words he uses to describe the power of God at work in believers are dynamis, kratos, ischys – these are all aspects of God’s power.

dynamis – not instantaneous or explosive like dynamite, but ability, capability of acting
kratos – strength, might, like physical strength; mastery, victory, as in a war, dominion, mastery – theocracy = rule of God
ischys – strength, power, might, ability – inherent strength or power that can be possessed

The end of knowing God intimately is that we might know what is the surpassing greatness of his ability or potential power. Power is what is made available to the believer – to strengthen, through the Holy Spirit. Christ will take up residence in the hearts of believers. This is progressive in nature, stated by the present continuous tense of the verb katoikesai (to inhabit, settle). The Christian keeps trusting, and Christ continues to indwell.

What results from Christ’s indwelling presence is love. Two pictures are used to illustrate this – one is of a tree with deep roots in the soil of love; the other is that of a building's strong foundations on the rock of love.

Paul’s prayer is not just for the Christians in Ephesus, but for all the saints; it joins the church in unity in corporate prayer. The love of Christ is too large to be confined by any geometrical measurements. It is wide enough to reach the whole world and beyond, it is long enough to stretch from eternity to eternity, it is high enough to raise both Jews and Gentiles to heavenly places, it is deep enough to rescue people from sin and the grip of Satan himself.

Paul finally prays that his readers may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God – what does this mean? Experiencing God’s moral excellence, perfection and power would result in love between Jew and Gentile. That fullness is to know the love of Christ – all people will know that we are his disciples if we love one another (John 13:35). When The Holy Spirit has empowered us, Christ has indwelt us, love has mastered us, and God has filled us with His own fullness, then He is able to do exceedingly abundantly beyond all that we ask or think.

February 07 2020 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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