While reading John Pipers book entitled Let The Nations Be Glad, I was moved by his chapter entitled “The Supremacy of God in Missions Through Prayer.”
Piper described life as a war. That’s not all it is. But it is always that. Our weakness in prayer is owing largely to our neglect of this truth. Prayer is primarily a wartime walkie-talkie for the mission of the church as it advances against the powers of darkness and unbelief. God has given us prayer as a wartime walkie-talkie so that we can call headquarters for everything we need as the kingdom of Christ advances in the world. Prayer gives us the significances of front-line forces, and gives God the glory of the limitless provider. The one who gives the power gets the glory!
The Apostle Paul often used warfare language in his writings. In 1 Timothy 6:12 he tells Timothy “Fight the good fight of faith; lay hold on eternal life to which you were called.”
Life is war because the maintenance of our faith and the laying hold on eternal life is a constant fight. Paul encouraged Timothy to see his whole ministry as war: “This charge I commit to you, Timothy, my son, that in accordance with the prophetic utterances which pointed to you, that inspired by them you may wage the good warfare.” (1 Timothy 1:18) “No soldier on service gets entangled in civilian pursuits.” (2 Timothy 2:4) In other words, missions and ministry are war!
Most people show by their priorities and their casual approach to spiritual things that they believe we are in peacetime, not wartime. In wartime we are on alert. We are armed. We are vigilant. We have an enemy worse than any human foe. Satan and spiritual darkness are the great enemy.
Prayer is for wielding the word!
If we do not feel the force of Satan’s conflict to destroy every soul in a hell of everlasting torment then we will not even know what prayer is. In Ephesians 6:17, 18 Paul makes the connection between the life of war and the work of prayer. (vs. 17) “Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.” (vs. 18) “Pray at all times in the Spirit with all prayer and supplication….” Two things mentioned here are “taking the sword and praying!” This is how we are to wield the word—by prayer!
Prayer is the communication with headquarters by which the weapons of warfare are deployed to the will of God. That’s the connection between the weapons and prayer in Ephesians 6. Prayer is for war!
This year’s Missions Conference engages us in warfare unprecedented in a world full of confusion and death. We must have an awakening to the power of God NOW! Pray!