TEXT: Colossians 1:1-14
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timotheus our brother,
2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,
4 Since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints,
5 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;
6 Which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth:
7 As ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ;
8 Who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit.
9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
10 That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;
11 Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
— PRAYER —
We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible.” The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have completed 322 messages in this series.
This is message #323 titled, How to Pray for the Good and Faithful Saints That You Don’t Know, Part 4.
As we approach Billy Graham’s birthday celebration, I want to share something from the evangelist whom God made great regarding the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He said, “During all my years as an evangelist, my message has always been the Gospel of Christ. It is not a Western religion, nor is it a message of one culture or political system. It is a message of life and hope for all the world.”
Over the past three messages, we have looked at Who and the Why of this passage. The Colossians who Paul is writing to were a body of believers that had a good reputation as a faithful assembly. The reason why Paul is writing to them is in order to refute dangerous false doctrine threatening to encroach upon them. Today, we will continue looking at the What of this particular passage. Paul has expressed the joy with which he is praying for these believers, and then he delineates the specific requests he is making for these believers, and that is what we are going to look at throughout this series.
In his prayers, Paul says that he “desires that [they] might be filled with the knowledge of [God’s] will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.” The Evangelical Dictionary of the Bible, edited by Walter Elwell states, “Since the day that Paul learned of their ‘love in the Spirit,’ he has continued to pray for them that they will come to understand what God’s will is for them and live a full Christian life doing works that are worthy of the Lord—works that are good rather than the evil ones that characterized their pagan past.”
How often have you desired to know God’s will? How often have you prayed, ‘Lord, show me which way you want me to go’? How often have you thought to yourself, ‘If only I could figure out what God wants me to do.’ If so, you know how not only the Colossians felt, but how millions of Christians the world over have felt down through the centuries. In this passage, Paul engages in the most effective way to discover the will of God — prayer.
Charles Spurgeon said, “If you read this epistle through, you will observe that Paul frequently alludes to knowledge and wisdom. To the point in which he judged the church to be deficient, he turned his prayerful attention. He did not want them to be ignorant. He knew that spiritual ignorance is the constant source of error, instability, and sorrow.”
We can know the will of God through prayer. And, as shown through Paul’s example, it is a godly thing to pray for others to know the will of God for their lives as well. Not only should we pray for others to know the will of God, but we should pray for them to be filled with “wisdom and spiritual understanding” as well. Wisdom is ‘broad intelligence and proper prudence in interactions with men.’ It is also ‘skill and discretion in imparting truth to others.’ Can’t we all use wisdom in our lives? All we have to do is ask God for it — for ourselves and for others. The term ‘understanding’ refers to the ability to put things together mentally. Both of these are abilities the Colossians would desperately need in light of the false doctrine that was on the verge of infiltrating their church. Their minds would have to be set to know the will of God, the wisdom of God, and understanding from God Prayer equipped them to that end, and it can equip us to that end as well.
James Montgomery wrote:
Almighty God, in humble prayer,
To Thee our souls we lift,
Do Thou our waiting minds prepare
For Thy most needful gift.
We ask not golden streams of wealth,
Along our path to flow,
We ask not undecaying health,
Nor length of years below.
We ask not honours which an hour
May bring or take away;
We ask not pleasure, pomp, or power,
Lest we should go astray.
We ask for wisdom:–Lord, impart
The knowledge how to live;
A wise and understanding heart
To all before Thee give.
For we, like children, born in sin
Know not till Thou hast taught,
How to go out, or how come in,
By word, or deed, or thought.
The young remember Thee in youth,
Before the evil days;
The old be guided by Thy truth
In Wisdom’s pleasant ways.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.