In this final part of the series, we shall consider what the Scriptures teach us about praying for those in authority.
1 Timothy 2:1-2 KJV “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
Kings here refer to presidents, governors. All that are in authority refers to anyone else occupying leadership roles in the society.
This appears the ONLY New Testament scripture for praying for our nation even though it’s not expressly stated as it addresses personalities particularly.
Why are we to pray for them?
That we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
Amplified Translation renders 1 Timothy 2:2 this way: “For kings and all who are in positions of authority or high responsibility, that outwardly we may pass a quiet and undisturbed life and inwardly a peaceable one in all godliness and reverence and seriousness in every way.”
Undisturbed life .godliness and reverence.
This prayer request seems to be for the benefit of believers as non-believers can’t exhibit the above traits except saved.
However context will help us.
1 Timothy 2:3-4 KJV “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.”
The prayers for those in government is for salvation. Not good economic policies.
God’s will for all men is clearly spelt out
2 Peter 3:9 KJV “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
This includes our leaders in our nation.
Are we to ask for wisdom for them? There is NO New Testament scripture for this.
Our prayers for our leaders are seen in the results of their response to the gospel of Christ not great economic or social changes.
Let’s see such results
John 19:38-39 KJV “And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus. And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.”
Two different rulers who were disciples of Jesus.
Acts 10:1,45 KJV “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
Cornelius was a military leader, a man in authority, he receives the gospel and his household
Acts 13:7,12 KJV “ Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God…. Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.”
Another ruler believed the gospel.
Acts 18:8 KJV “And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized.”
Again, a ruler here believe the gospel with all his house, this led many Corinthians to also believe:
Acts 28:7 KJV “In the same quarters were possessions of the chief man of the island, whose name was Publius; who received us, and lodged us three days courteously.”
Yet another person in authority.
The primary reason we are to pray for those in authority is for their salvation.As this occurs we see such results in our lives.
1 Timothy 2:2 KJV “… that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
There are many godless nations with godless leaders with good economies, security however the citizens aren’t leading this life of godliness.
Is it out of place to pray for the economic and social well-being of your nation? NO.
But the primary reason for praying for others should either be for salvation or spiritual growth or ministry, and in the case of our leaders, who are unsaved, for their salvation.
God wants our leaders saved from sin. We should want it too.
List out 10 leaders in your nation, state etc., start to pray for them and those who are saved pray that they come into the knowledge of the truth.
Don’t forget to pray in the spirit (1 Corinthians 14:14-15; Jude20)
Let us pray!
Jesus is Lord, We Win!
Adapted with permission, from Facebook post by Reverend Chris Olusegun Onayinka.