First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.
1 Timothy 2:1 – Scripture Of The Day (January 14, 2014)
Everyone. We are to pray for everyone. Think about that for a minute.
We are to make supplications (requests for needs) for our next door neighbor to whom we barely speak. We are to pray for his needs.
We are to make intercessions (pray on behalf of others) for our boss whom we don’t like that much. He’s an unreasonable jerk, but we are to pray on his behalf. We are to pray that God bless him.
We are to make thanksgivings (be grateful to God) for members of Congress!!
I mean, it does say everyone…right?
The very next verse specifies that we are to pray for people in positions of authority in the government, and even gives the reason as to why: “…that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.” I think it’s safe to say that Christianity is coming under attack more and more in our society these days. We’re getting closer and closer to the day when it will be very hard to lead a peaceful and quiet life as a faithful Christian in America. Maybe God in this passage is giving us one reason as to why this is happening. Come on, when was the last time you prayed from the heart for the well being of President Obama/Bush/Clinton, Governor _________________, Senator _______________, and Congressman ____________________? When was the last time you gave a prayer of thanksgiving for them? We American Christians value our freedom of speech and expression so much over what God actually told us to do about our governmental leaders that it may be costing us our freedom of religion.
In other words, we may be so much more focused on criticizing (justly and unjustly) and insulting the President personally (always unjustifiable, I don’t care what policies he’s put into place; see Titus 3:1-2, 1 Peter 2:13, Romans 13:1, 7, and 2 Peter 2:9-10) than praying, giving supplication, intercessions, and thanksgivings for him that God is up in heaven saying, “Hey, I told you that you would not have quiet, peaceful lives if you did not pray for your governmental leaders. Looks like you’re going to have to learn that the hard way!” Something to think about…
Bringing it back closer to home, let me stress again that God told us to pray these types of positive prayers for everyone. That means that we are to pray for our enemies at work. The cashier at the grocery store whose name we don’t even know. The mailman. Our mother-in-law. The president of Iran. The criminals whose faces we just saw on the evening news. The teenager who egged our house last night. Our brothers and sisters at church and at every other congregation on the planet. Even the brethren whom we don’t like that much. The atheists, even the militant ones like Bill Maher and Richard Dawkins who blatantly mock and disparage our faith. Everyone.
I know I need to do a lot better than I have been. Maybe you do too. Maybe we can start by praying for each other that we can do better in our prayer lives. Maybe we can start right now…