Grace Bible Church

Preaching the Living Word through the Written Word













Grace Bible Church, Gillette, Wyoming

Pastor Daryl Hilbert



A.    Exclusive of the Psalms, which form a prayer-book on their own, the Bible records no fewer than 650 definite prayers, of which no less than 450 have recorded answers.(Lockyer)

B.    Just the root word “pray” in the NASB is used some 334 times in the Bible, 183 in the OT and 151 in the NT. This does not include other forms of petitions.

C.    According to Herbert Lockyer’s “All the Prayers of the Bible,” the first prayer in the Bible was in Gen 4:26, “… Then men began to call upon the name of the LORD.” Ray Stedman maintained that the first recorded prayer between God and man was in Gen 3:8-13, after the fall of man. That Scripture was the first recorded dialogue between Adam and God, and dialogue between man and God is essentially prayer.

D.    Again, according to Lockyer, the last prayer of the Bible is found in Rev 22:17, 20, “The Spirit and the bride say, Come… (Rev 22:17) … He who testifies to these things says, Yes, I am coming quickly. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. (Rev 22:20)


A.    [It is] … the desire, opportunity, and privilege of talking to God. (Herbert Lockyer)

B.    What is prayer? Prayer is an offering up of our desires unto God, for things agreeable to his will, in the name of Christ, with confession of our sins, and thankful acknowledgment of his mercies. (Westminster Confession)

C.    Prayer is a sincere, sensible, affectionate pouring out of the heart or soul to God, through Christ, in the strength and assistance of the Holy Spirit, for such things as God hath promised, or according to the Word, for the good of the church, with submission, in faith, to the will of God (John Bunyan)

D.    Prayer is defined in the Bible as lifting up the soul to God (Ps 25:1; 143:8), pouring out of the heart to God (Ps 62:8), crying out to God (Ps 86:3), approaching the throne of grace (Ps 84:1-2; Heb 4:16), sacrificing spiritually (Heb 13:15), and drawing near the presence of God (Jam 4:8).

E.    Prayer is the response of dependence of the creature upon his Creator. It is the communication between man and God. Prayer is the approach we take to seek God, fellowship with God, praise God, and align our wills with His. Prayer is the way in which we go to God for our forgiveness, our needs, our comfort, and our direction. Prayer is the means by which we commune with God, seek spiritual strength from God, intercede for others for God, and pursue ministry of God.


A.    The Bible lists numerous  main types of prayer: prayer of faith (James 5:15), prayer of agreement (also known as corporate prayer) (Acts 2:42), prayer of request (also known as petition or supplication) (Philippians 4:6), prayer of thanksgiving (Psalm 95:2-3), prayer of worship (Acts 13:2-3), prayer of consecration (also known as dedication) (Matthew 26:39), prayer of confession (Dan 9:20; Ezra 10:1; Ps 32:5), prayer of intercession (1 Timothy 2:1), prayer of imprecation (Psalms 69), and praying in the Spirit (Ep 6:18).

B.    Scripture gives example of people who pray in the morning, people who pray at noon, people who pray at night, people who pray seven times a day, people who pray at midnight, people who pray all night, people who pray before dawn, people who pray for days, people who pray for weeks, some who prayed long, some prayed short, some prayed kneeling, some prayed standing, some prayed lying on a bed, some prayed lying face down on the ground, some prayed hands up, some prayed hands down, some prayed hands out, some prayed face down, some prayed face up, etc., etc. Every way, everywhere, prayer; pray unceasingly. (MacArthur)


A.    Devotion to Prayer Continually

1.     The context of Colossians Ch. 3 & 4 focuses on the believer’s new life in Christ (Col 3:1-17). With new life comes a new way of life for believers. There is a new way of life for Christian households (Col 3:18-21), Christian occupations (Col 3:22-4:1), Christian prayer and ministry (Col 4:2-4), Christian conduct with outsiders (Col 4:5-6).

2.     Perhaps the most important feature of the believer’s new life is the believer’s prayer life (Col 4:2-4). All believers are to be continually devoted to, that is, devoted to all kinds of prayer (Eph 6:18; Php 4:6), devoted to praying without ceasing (1Th 5:17), and devoted to praying in all aspects (communion with God, personal spiritual strength, intercession for others, and pursue ministry) (Col 4:2).

3.     These words are more than mere instructions, because the Greek word for “devote” (proskartereite) is in the imperative mood. In other words, it is a command. It is so strong that every believer must be “devoted to prayer.” If a believer is not devoted to prayer, not only will his spiritual life suffer, but he also is sinning against the Lord’s command.

4.     This word is also in the present tense, which indicates continuous action. It would be literally translated as, “You must continually devote yourselves to prayer.”

5.     The word proskartereō is made up of two Greek words, pros, which means toward and kartereō, which means to be steadfast. Those two words combined mean being steadfast toward something, hold fast to, continue in (Ac 2:46; 8:13), persevere in something, or be devoted to something (Ac 10:7; Ro 13:6).

6.     However, five times in the NT proskartareō is used in connection with prayer (Ac 1:14; 2:42; 6:4; Ro 12:12; Col 4:2). In fact, the word in the NT seems to best fit with the concept of prayer.

B.    Devotion to Prayer by the Early Church (proskartareō)

1.     Ac 1:14 - While the apostles, disciples, and women were waiting for Jesus to send the Holy Spirit, they “were continually devoting themselves to prayer.”

2.     Ac 2:42 - After the Holy Spirit came, one of the characteristics the early church was known for was that “they were continually devoting themselves to…prayer.”

3.     Ac 6:4 - The apostles understood that their primary ministry was to “devote themselves to prayer (and the ministry of the word).

4.     Ro 12:12; Col 4:2 - All believers in the early church were admonished to be continually “devoted to prayer.

C.    Devotion to Prayer in the Parables

1.     Persistent Friend (Lk 11:5-8) - If a reluctant friend will do something for you because you’re persistent, imagine what a God who is not reluctant will do if you’re persistent (MacArthur).

2.     Persistent Widow (Lk 18:1-7) - If a reluctant friend and an unjust judge will do what is asked because of the continual pleading, then certainly a compassionate, loving, gracious, kind, tenderhearted God will do more (MacArthur)

D.    Devotion to Prayer through Biblical Examples

1.     Moses showed his devotion to prayer when he repeatedly pleaded for Israel’s forgiveness (Nu 14:19) and for Israel to be spared from destruction (Dt 9:26). He was even willing to pray that he be blotted out of the book of life (Ex 32:32) instead of Israel and he even appealed to God’s own reputation (Nu 14:15-18).

2.     Jacob wrestled with the pre-incarnate Christ in a manner that believers ought to wrestle in prayer. Believers must continually strive with God until they receive God’s blessings of answered prayer (Ge 32:26-30).

3.     Daniel was devoted to prayer and even a den of lions could not keep him from praying (Dan 6:13-16).

4.     Elijah’s devotion to prayer brought down both fire (1Ki 18:37-38) and rain (1Ki 18:42-45) from heaven. Elijah was mentioned by James (a devotee to prayer in his own right, being nicknamed, “Camel knees”) as the example of “the effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much” (Jam 5:16-18).

5.     The apostles and the early church were devoted to prayer. They were gathered together for prayer before the Holy Spirit came (Ac 1:14). And after the Holy Spirit came they continually devoted themselves to prayer (Ac 2:42). They devoted themselves to prayer and it shook the building (Ac 4:31), it shook prison doors (Ac 16:25-26), it even shook the dead (Ac 9:40-41), but it especially shook the world right side up with the prayer-bathed gospel (Ac 17:6).

E.    Devotion to Prayer through Jesus’ Example

1.     Then there is Jesus, our perfect example of someone devoted to prayer. The Scriptures record some 80 verses or references to Jesus and prayer, whether depicting actual prayers, depicting allusions to prayer, or Jesus’ teaching on prayer.




Grace Bible Church · 4000 E. Collins Rd ·  PO Box #3762 · Gillette, WY · (307) 686-1516