P]raying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints — and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
Pray without ceasing.
-1 Thessalonians 5:17
Prayer is warfare! You are battling the kingdom of darkness when you pray. We need to be praying the Word of God and praying according to the Word of God. To pray without ceasing is to battle the kingdom of darkness continually.
Often, people think of prayer as being quiet, peaceful, and sweet. And it can be. But we are wise to recognize that prayer very often needs to be violent, passionate, intense, aggressive, and very intentional. As faithful disciples of Christ, we are to fill our lives and our world with passionate and violent prayer.
Prayer is a weapon and a very effective one when used biblically. Though some may often say and think of prayer as being a “nice and sweet and mild-mannered activity,” it’s actually a powerful weapon that can do much to attack the darkness. It’s a violent weapon and should be used this way – every day!
And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.
Daily we should attack the kingdom of darkness with the violent weapon of prayer.
There are giants in every believer’s Promised Land. Those giants are the obstacles, the roadblocks that the devil seeks to work through to discourage and/or stop us as we seek to live out the call of God on our lives. They are the means by which the devil and the kingdom of darkness keeps us from standing up for what is right and for the Word and the will of God on Earth. Like Goliath defying the people of Israel, the devil wants to defy - to challenge - the Church of Jesus Christ. Standing on the Word of God in prayer is like the rock that took Goliath out.
Prayer is a weapon that, through the Holy Spirit’s empowerment, helps you to be victorious in any and every situation.
For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.
-1 Corinthians 16:9
When you are doing the work of the Lord, many adversaries and enemies will show up at your door. Prayer is a key weapon you can use to overcome the enemies you encounter on your battlefield. This powerful weapon called prayer has been given to us by God. He has placed it in our hands. What are we going to do with it?
In the world we live in, there is a great need for believers to be faithful and passionate prayer warriors who pray “violently” as a lifestyle. Why? Because the need for violent prayer today is so great. There is spiritual warfare going on everywhere. In the Church, in marriages and families, in the political arena, in the nations and peoples of the world, in our schools, in the business world, etc. – all of these are arenas that need much prayer. Look around. There is such intense spiritual warfare on all of these fronts.
The following prayer, a prayer based on Psalm 91, is a great “violent” prayer we would be wise to pray every day. In what way is it violent? In its effect in hammering the forces of darkness. It’s also violent as it knocks demonic forces out of the way, as God carries out His promises to keep His Word as He protects and helps us in our times of need.
Praying Psalm 91 - A Prayer for Protection
Today, I dwell in the secret place of the most High,
and so I abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
Today I say of the Lord,
You are my refuge and my fortress:
my God; in You I trust.
Surely you deliver me from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
You cover me with Your feathers, and under Your wings I trust:
Your truth is my shield and buckler.
And so, I am not afraid for the terror by night;
nor for the arrow that flies by day;
Nor for the pestilence that walks in darkness;
nor for the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at my side, and ten thousand at my right hand;
but it shall not come near me.
Only with my eyes do I look and see the reward of the wicked.
Because I have made the Lord my refuge, even the most High, my habitation;
No evil befalls me, nor does any plague come nigh my dwelling.
For He gives his angels charge over me, to keep me in all my ways.
They bear me up in their hands, lest I dash my foot against a stone.
I tread upon the lion and the cobra:
the young lion and the serpent I trample under foot.
Because I have set my love upon Him, therefore He delivers me:
He sets me on high, because I have known His name.
I call upon Him, and He answers me:
He is with me in trouble;
He delivers me, and honors me.
With long life He satisfies me,
and shows me His salvation.
In Jesus’s Name, Amen.
(Psalm 91 prayer, adapted)