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This is a prayer for the king. The fortunes of the people are bound up with the actions of governmental leaders, so it is always proper to pray for them.
Since the days of the early church, the people of God have used these words to pray for the rule of King Jesus. In a very real sense we pray with Jesus for the fulfillment of the purposes of God: “May your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6.10).
There is a fair amount of mystery surrounding how prayer works. Paul wrote about how the Holy Spirit in involved with our prayers. He said, “In the same way the Spirit also comes to help us, weak as we are. For we do not know how we ought to pray; the Spirit himself pleads with God for us in groans that words cannot express” (Romans 8.26).
The Book of Hebrews describes the continued prayer ministry of Jesus with these words, “And so [Jesus] is able, now and always, to save those who come to God through him, because he lives forever to plead with God for them” (Hebrews 7.25).
We are most effective in our prayers, when we join our prayers to what the Holy Spirit and Jesus are praying. Psalm 20 gives us words to pray, as we join God in what he is doing in the earth.
Prayer for the King
It is my desire that these blog articles will encourage you to use them to inform and assist your prayers. The church has used this Psalm to pray for leaders and also for Jesus’ continued leadership.
May the Lord answer you when you are in trouble!
May the God of Jacob protect you!
May he send you help from his Temple
and give you aid from Mount Zion.
May he accept all your offerings
and be pleased with all your sacrifices.
May he give you what you desire
and make all your plans succeed.
Then we will shout for joy over your victory
and celebrate your triumph by praising our God.
May the Lord answer all your requests. (Psalm 20.1-5)
It is quite appropriate to pray these verses for earthly leaders. We can pray for pastors, business and governmental leaders. We can ask God to put their lives in alignment with what he wants to accomplish through them.
Let’s join our prayers with the words of the Psalm and say, “Dear God, as this leader (pastor, business or governmental leader) is aligned with your will, please give them what they are praying about and make their plans succeed.”
Knowing that both the Holy Spirit and Jesus continue to plead for humankind, we can kneel down beside our Savior and join him in prayer. We can say, “Lord Jesus, help me to pray in agreement for what is on your heart. Show me your will, so I can join you in your prayers.”
We also can pray, “Lord Jesus, may the Father give you what you desire and bring success to your ultimate purposes.”
The Lord Gives Victory
When the people of God left their lives of slavery in Egypt, they did so by the “hand of God.” Pharaoh pursued them with horses and chariots, but they were drowned in the sea. (See Exodus 14 and 15). Israel knew that only God could give them victory.
Thinking of Jesus, we know that only the Father could give life to his crucified Son. His victory over death reminds us that God is the ultimate victor over sin and death.
Now I know that the Lord gives victory to his chosen king;
he answers him from his holy heaven
and by his power gives him great victories.
Some trust in their war chariots
and others in their horses,
but we trust in the power of the Lord our God.
Such people will stumble and fall,
but we will rise and stand firm. (Psalm 20.6-8)
As we pray this for pastors, business and governmental leaders, we must first ask that they are aligned with God’s purposes. The Pharaohs of the earth, who trust in their military might, first need to surrender their plans to the direction of God. Once, leaders are aligned with God, we can pray for God’s victory through them.
As we join Jesus in his praying, our first goal is to know what is his agenda. Jesus said, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, then you will ask for anything you wish, and you shall have it” (John 15.7).
This is the secret to effective praying. While we live in a personal relationship with Jesus, we learn what are his “words” for particular situation. Then, we pray his “words” along with him.
Christ is Victor
Johann Blumhardt was a Lutheran minister in Germany in the 1800s. He was convinced that one of the female members of his church was being oppressed by a demon. For over a year, Blumhardt sought to free this woman from the oppressive powers that were pressing upon her.
His activity to set the woman free was frowned upon by the church. They believed in demons as pertained to Jesus’ ministry, but rejected Blumhardt’s efforts for the woman. Blumhardt felt compelled by God to continue to minister to the woman, almost to the exclusion of his other pastoral duties.
After a year of struggling to set the woman free, the demons finally relented. One night the entire community was awakened by an audible cry from the demons, “Christ is victor!”
The deliverance of the woman set in motion a series of events that lasted until the beginning of the First World War. Marriages were restored, people were healed, and many people came to faith in Christ. Some of the most significant German Christian leaders of that era mark their spiritual beginning with the influence of Johann Blumhardt.
As we pray this Psalm for victory, stories like Blumhardt’s reminds us of what is at stake.
We join Christians of all ages and pray the last verse of the Psalm for God’s victory for his Son, the King of all kings.
Give victory to the king, O Lord;
answer us when we call. (Psalm 20.9)
May We Pray For You?
Maywood Baptist Church has a prayer team. We are honored to pray for your requests. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on Facebook. We will pray for you.