Indeed, the onus really rests on all believers to pray for the church. Prayers for the Church should be a priority for all believers in Christ as we look forward to the new year. In 2023 and beyond, much of what will take place in and around our lives, our churches, and our nations depends on how we pray now.
We should be fervent in our prayers for the church and fully trust that God will answer them according to His perfect will.
Let’s explore prayer directions that believers should raise for the Church in 2023.
Pray for the church: What does the Bible say about praying for the church?
There are many references in the Bible regarding the church and prayer. I will quote just a few of them here:
- Acts 12:4-6: (Peter Freed from Prison): 4 So when he had arrested him, he put him in prison and delivered him to four squads of soldiers to keep him, intending to bring him before the people after Passover. 5 Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church. 6 And when Herod was about to bring him out, that night Peter was sleeping, bound with two chains between two soldiers; and the guards before the door were keeping the prison.
- 1 Thessalonians 3:10-12 (Prayer for the Church): 10 night and day praying exceedingly that we may see your face and perfect what is lacking in your faith?
- 1 Timothy 2:7-9 (Men and Women in the Church): 7 for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle – I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying – a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. 8 I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting; 9 in like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing,
- Acts 14:22-24: “22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.” 23 So when they had appointed elders in every church and prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed. 24 And after they had passed through Pisidia, they came to Pamphylia. 11 Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you. 12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you.”
- James 5:13-15 (Meeting Specific Needs): 13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.
Prayer topics to pray for the church
1. Pray for revival in the church
The church is in desperate need of revival. What once was full of life and vitality now can be characterized as lethargic, unproductive, and unmotivated to serve. We are called by God to not just be hearers of the word but doers of the word (James 1:22-25).
Scripture calls us to pray for one another that revival may come across the body. 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? Unless indeed you are disqualified.”
Prayer points for revival in the church
- Let us pray for revival in our churches so that those who have strayed from their faith may return and be renewed.
- Let us also pray for open doors for evangelism in our communities so that we may impact and influence others with the hope of salvation through Jesus Christ in our lives.
May these prayers help bring us closer to God through continual study and fellowship with other believers.
2. Pray for the church to be a light in the darkness
The Church is on the frontlines of the spiritual battle, and there remain many forces of darkness arrayed against it.
Prayer points for the church to be a light in the world
- Pray for God’s protection over His church, and that it might be a witness to bringing His good news around the world.
- Pray for courage for the Church to uphold its beliefs despite the temptations to compromise with culture or human limitations posed by sin.
- Further, ask God for believers in the Church to be examples of holiness, dedication, and transformation.
- Ask Him to equip them with wisdom on how to stay true to their faith even when facing diversity in thought and opinion.
- Pray that they might also have a spirit of discernment whenever they must decide between truth and lies, light or darkness.
- Pray that God raises up leaders who can shepherd any body of believers towards maturity in their faith while empowering them spiritually.
- Lastly, pray that the Church may be bold in proclaiming Jesus’s name not only in words but also through actions like charitable giving and compassion towards those who are hurting. May we all strive fervently for true unity within His body!
3. Pray for the church to be a beacon of hope
In this season, it’s especially important to lift up our local churches and their leaders in prayer. As we look ahead to 2023 and the years beyond, let’s make an effort to see the church in our local community and beyond being a beacon of hope.
Let’s also remember that physical structures alone are not what makes the church, for we as believers make up the body of Christ and we’re responsible for its witness wherever we go.
Prayer points for the church to be a beacon of hope
Prayer is such a powerful weapon, so let’s take these next few moments to bring these important requests before God:
- Pray for the church to teach and preach sound doctrine.
- Pray for the church leaders
- Pray that as we enter into a new year, God will stir in each Christian heart excitement and anticipation for what He has planned.
- Ask God to provide wisdom and courage for pastors, elders, deacons, youth pastors,, and other ministry leaders leading churches locally and around the world.
- Pray that churches would reflect the love of Jesus through genuine hospitality towards visitors or those searching for truth.
- Ask God to increase the unity among members of different denominations or Christian backgrounds within a church body.
- Pray for protection over all places of worship from violence or extremist groups who seek to divide or disrupt them.
- Ask God that as churches share His Word with others, trust would be established between them as beloved brothers and sisters in Christ.
- Pray that individuals attending church would be open to hearing the Truth no matter their beliefs; He is Lord over all things – ask Him to open their hearts to the Gospel message!
- Invoke the power of prayer over missionaries—that they may have doctors available when needed; safety while traveling; opportunities in dire times; strength & courage even while struggling financially…etc!
- Intercede on behalf of those who have been hurt by some form of Church abuse so they can receive closure and healing (physically; emotionally).
- Lastly, pray that resources available both financially and initiative-wise would be conducive towards furthering & equipping kingdom advancement!
Frequently asked questions
As we enter a new year, let us remember to pray for the Church around the world. Let us pray for the church, such that, in the years to come, the Church may be ever more united in love and truth.
You’ll agree with me that as Christians, it’s our duty to pray for the church. And as we look ahead to 2023 and beyond, there are some specific things we should be praying for, which have been enumerated above.
Remember to pray for the church. Stay blessed!