Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Prayers in Acts

"Throughout redemptive history, praying together has marked the spiritual liveliness of God’s gathered people" (Praying Together, Megan Hill).

This quote plays itself out repeatedly in the Book of Acts.  Below are verses in Acts about prayer and what it did for the church.

Acts 1:14, 24 

These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.

 And they prayed and said, “You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two You have chosen.

Waiting and growth in leaders

After being told to wait, the disciples returned to Jerusalem.   As they waited, they devoted themselves to prayer. 

While waiting, they realized it was necessary to appoint a man to replace to replace Judas.  Their selection process included prayer.

Acts 2:42

They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer.

Acts 2:41 states, "That day there were added about three thousand souls."  With all of this growth, the church still devoted itself to teaching, fellowship, breaking bread, and prayer.  This great growth did not distract them from what they needed to do.

Acts 4:31 

And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the word of God with boldness.

Around this prayer in Acts 4:31 we see a growth in boldness and in unity among the church.

Acts 6:6

And these they brought before the apostles; and after praying, they laid their hands on them.

At the point when the apostles said men needed to be selected to serve the widows so they could devote themselves to prayer and the ministry of the word.  After the selection of the seven men, the people prayed.

Acts 9:40

But Peter sent them all out and knelt down and prayed, and turning to the body, he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter, she sat up.

Tabitha died (9:37).  Peter prayed (9:40).  God raised her from the dead (9:40).  Many believed (9:42).  

Acts 10:1-3

Now there was a man at Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian cohort, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, and gave many alms to the Jewish people and prayed to God continually.  About the ninth hour of the day he clearly saw in a vision an angel of God who had just come in and said to him, “Cornelius!”

In Acts 10, Cornelius prayed to God continually and the gospel spread beyond the Jews.

Acts 12:12

And when he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying.

Peter was in prison, but people prayed fervently for him (12:5).  Upon his miraculous release, he went to the house where people were praying for him.  At the end of this chapter, we read that the word of the Lord continued to grow and be multiplied.  

Acts 13:1-3

Now there were at Antioch, in the church that was there, prophets and teachers: Barnabas and Simeon, who was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, who had been brought up with Herod the Tetrarch, and Saul.  While they were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”  Then, when they had fasted and prayed and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

The Holy Spirit called Barnabas and Paul to mission work.  The church prayed for them and sent them out.  The Antioch church grew by sending to of their brightest away.

Acts 14:23

When they had appointed elders for them in every church, having prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed.

Paul was stoned and thought dead.  He went on and strengthened souls and encouraged them to continue in the faith.  They appointed elders in every church and prayed and fasted.  The church grew.

No comments:

Post a Comment