The purpose of prayer is simple. It connects us humans to our creator. That being said, we humans are complicated and our God is great so this Bible study on prayer explores all areas in which we find that communication with God.
Everyone you ask will have a different prayer experience. For some, the opening prayer for a Bible study or church service seems to roll off their tongues easily and without much thought. While others complain of having trouble thinking of words. For me, prayer is a running conversation with God, but I often lack the faith to expect the great things I pray for.
Armed with the confidence that God hears us, let’s dig into prayer and how we can make it a regular part of our day as well as lean into its power and strength.
Why a Bible Study on Prayer?
Whether you are here looking for words for public prayers, want to improve your own prayer life, or just need help knowing if your own words are enough when communicating with God, you’ve come to the right place.
This Bible study on prayer will answer all of your questions and lead you into a deeper relationship with God. Let’s join together in Jesus’ name and learn together.
We are going to pull examples and study what the word of God says about prayer and I want this to be presented in a simple way. Faith is simple and we often overcomplicate it.
Prayer is very personal and covers a multitude of experiences and purposes.
First, prayer is an act of worship. We are coming to God wanting to have a relationship with Him. We are seeking the communion Adam and Eve had in the Garden of Eden. He is the only true God and there is none like Him.
Secondly, prayer is humbling. We want God to work in our lives. We are acknowledging that we are created beings and that the power of God is great and needed in our lives. God’s mercy should be something we thank Him for daily.
Third, prayer is obedience to scripture. The Bible is full of verses about prayer. Do not neglect this important part of your walk with God.
The Importance of Prayer
I have just stated three reasons why prayer is important.
- It is an act of worship
- It is humbling
- It grows our faith
Did you catch that? Prayer brings on peace. One more reason to pray.
This verse is in the middle of a discussion on spiritual warfare. For more verses about praying against the forces of darkness check out these two posts:
Notice how prayer and thanksgiving go hand in hand in these verses? Also, note the word “earnestly”. Prayer is not a once-and-done sort of thing. Prayer is something we focus on daily, sometimes many times throughout the day. The closer we want to be to God, the more we pray. The greater our need, the more we pray.
The Power of Prayer: Examples in God’s Word
We read about the powerful works of the Almighty God in the Old Testament because of the prayers of faithful servants. Similarly, we read about the power of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament as the glory of God is revealed in Christ Jesus and His obedient followers.
- Moses prays– Exodus 33 has a beautiful conversation between Moses and God. Moses asks God for His direction and help and God answers Him.
- King Hezekiah prayed for deliverance- The wicked Assyrians had come to destroy Judah. Hezekiah knew he was no match for the powerful army and went straight to God. This story of faith and God’s help is found in 2 Kings 19.
- Elijah prays and fire comes down from Heaven– One of my all time favorite stories is that of Elijah and the prophets of Baal. A showdown between the God of Heaven and the false gods of the day. This story is found in 1 Kings 18. Elijah is also mentioned in James 5 “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.”
- Esther fasts and prays to the saving of her people– The inspiring story of a young Hebrew woman taken against her will to become the next queen of a vast empire. Before putting herself in danger she fasts and prays that God be with her and save her people. God grants her request and honors her faithfulness.
- Jesus prayed before raising Lazarus from the dead– Jesus had complete confidence that God heard him. This powerful story is found in John chapter 11.
- Paul prays for the church– Paul mentions praying many times for the people. He has beautiful blessings and comforting prayers. Read Colossians 1:9-12 and Ephesians 1:16-18 for examples of these prayers.
The Lord’s Prayer
Jesus was in constant contact with his Heavenly Father. We see several times that Jesus Christ departed alone to pray. This teaches us the importance of quiet time with God.
Jesus also gives us an example of how to pray. He doesn’t tell us to repeat his words but gives us an outline of how to formulate our own prayers. No Bible study on prayer would be complete without mentioning this example.
We can follow this pattern. Praise and acknowledgment of who God is, submission to His will, make our requests known, ask for help, and end with praise.
Your Personal Prayer Life
So, let’s take what we’ve talked about so far and make it personal. What lessons can we apply to the Christian life? How much time should we spend praying? What if God’s answer isn’t what we want or He doesn’t answer at all? How do we know we are in the will of God? Let’s answer these common questions now before going onto more specific prayers.
Paul tells us to pray without ceasing, which doesn’t mean that we sit on our knees for an extended period of time every day. It does mean that prayer should be a natural part of your everyday life. Your conversation with God is like that with a good friend. It is easy and you can pick up where you left off with no trouble.
What if God doesn’t answer? Keep praying.
What if God’s answer is not what you want? Ask Him to align your heart with His will. Ultimately, we want to be close to God because we love Him and want to serve Him. We can only do that by giving up our own will and selfish desires. True peace, love, and joy will replace everything that we worry about losing, but it takes faith to reach this point.
Sometimes God’s will is difficult to determine. This is why regular prayer is important. Unless we are communicating with God and learning His voice, our ears (or hearts) will not be in tune with Him.
It is also important to note that daily Bible reading will also bring you closer to God and help you understand Him, keeping that prayer communication open.
The Specific Prayer
Sometimes my prayer is a simple “O Lord, help me today” and other times I can get pretty detailed on what exactly I need. God understands all of our prayers!
Let’s conclude this Bible study on prayer with some specific prayers. I am a huge believer in praying scripture so we will read a verse and then turn God’s word into a prayer.
Confession of Sin
Prayer for forgiveness of sins is our first step to salvation. As imperfect sinful people, we find ourselves coming back time and time against asking for forgiveness. This is important for spiritual growth and a strong walk with God.
Sin separates us from Him and we need to remove it whenever He brings it to our attention. Fortunately for us, God’s abundant mercy forgives us every time.
Forgive me, Lord, for my transgression. I come to you in humility. Have mercy on me and wash me clean. You are merciful and gracious and full of patience and kindness. Incline your ear to me and forgive me. In Jesus’ name.
Prayer from a Thankful Heart
While there are many beautiful prayers of thanksgiving in scripture, two stand out in my mind. The prayers of Hannah and Mary.
Hannah was barren and she begged God for a child. She promises to give the child back to Him if He would grant her request. When He does, her words of gratitude overflow.
Thank you, Lord, for you are great. You are a rewarder of those who diligently seek You. My heart rejoices and overflows with thanksgiving because you have heard me. There is none like you in power or grace or security.
When Mary visits her cousin Elizabeth, both having miracles growing in their wombs, her gratitude and praise spill out.
Thank you, Lord, for your blessings and gracious gifts you’ve bestowed upon me. I am lowly and undeserving, but out of your great love, you have given me of your goodness. You have answered my prayers, lifted me up, and done great things for me. I praise your name forever and ever. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Prayer for Time of Need
Continuing our Bible study on prayer, let’s find some specific verses for help in time of need. God alone is our deliverer and strength. He is the one who supplies our needs. Whether your prayer for time of need is for your physical, emotional, or spiritual well-being, know that God hears you.
Lord, I know you are great and you alone can help me. You are my refuge and strength. I put my trust in you. Help me in this difficult situation and fulfill your word to not forsake me in this time. I pray this in Jesus’ name, amen.
Lord, you have promised to work all things for my good. Right now, it doesn’t feel good. This situation is not good for me and I need your help to work through it. Please help me to stand on your promise. Help me to believe and stand strong.
Prayer for the Peace of God
Peace is one of those things I’ve sought after for years now and God has taught me that it isn’t something that comes naturally, we must pursue it. The world looks for peace in political rest and financial security. As believers in Jesus, we seek a different peace.
We seek a peace of mind as well as a spiritual peace. When your heart is right with God, there is no denying the peace and joy you experience. Jesus said, “In the world, you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”.
Lord, your word tells me that you will bring me peace. I trust you, am seeking you, and long to make you the most important part of my life. I don’t want peace like the world brings, I desire your peace, your strength, and your grace. In Jesus’ name.
I love this verse because if you are anything like me, your stress affects your sleep. Lying there in the dark, those worries magnify and haunt me. We do not have to worry, we have a prayer for the peace of God. Pray Psalm 4:8 in times of worry.
Prayer for Healing
We desire healing in a variety of ways. Physical healing is the most obvious, but we are also in need of spiritual and emotional healing.
I know you alone can heal me. I trust you, I cling to you, I believe in you. I praise you for your healing hand. I thank you for your mercy and grace.
I know that you are here for me. You alone can heal my heart. I lean into you, accept your grace, and cling to your truth.
You know my need before I even ask. You also know better than I how to bring everything together to supply those needs. I trust you and believe your word. In Jesus name, amen.
I hope this Bible study on prayer has brought you closer to God and helped you on your spiritual journey. I’d love to hear your thoughts on prayer in the comments below!