God’s Word for You
Colossians 4:2-3 Take it to the Lord in prayer
by Pastor Timothy Smith on Saturday, September 21, 2019
2 Devote yourselves to prayer. Be watchful in it, and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God will open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains.
There’s nothing new and unusual about being urged to pray. But notice that Paul says, “Be watchful in it,” that is, in your prayer. This is a reminder of Jesus’ words in Gethsemane, “Watch and pray” (Matthew 26:41). The Lord Jesus also said (as Wisdom): “Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the LORD” (Proverbs 8:34-35).
Jesus also told his followers to watch “and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen” with regard to the terrible last days as the End of the World draws ever closer (Luke 21:36). Here, is Peter making a reference to the Last Day? If so, it is in this sense: Pray, and keep an eye on the times, so that you maintain your sense of urgency when it comes to sharing your faith. Souls are at stake because the End approaches!
Paul also asks the Colossians to pray for him while a door to the gospel has opened. This leads us to remember that there are, in general, four kinds of prayers: (1) Prayers for spiritual blessings such as forgiveness or understanding, (2) Prayers for earthly blessings such as health, guidance, rescue, or a family, (3) Intercessory prayers offered for other people and even our enemies, and (4) Praise and thanksgiving. Sometimes we keep ourselves away from prayer, but as one Christian put it, “The only way to fail at prayer is not to show up.” Turn to the Lord in prayer; if not on your own behalf, then on behalf of someone else. Pray for insight, for understanding, and for time to read God’s word. Pray on behalf of Christians who are misled by false teachers, and pray for your own pastors. It’s a privilege to pray, and God has extended the offer to every one of his children. Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Pastor Timothy Smith