Prayer: The Christian
Solider's Supply Line
William J. Brown
Of all we've studied so far, prayer is the unique concept among all the other accouterments of battle. It isn't a weapon like some claim. No, it's the communication line of the Christian soldier.
It also functions as a supply line. Sometimes that's the only way some view communication with God. But it's more than that. It also keeps the Christian soldier in touch with his battle commander, Jesus Christ.
So praying is very important for the soldier of God. It keeps us in touch with our Savior.
If this is so important, then we must learn to use it properly. How do we use this all-important supply line then? How do we keep the lines of communication with God open?
Ephesians 6:18 tells us...
Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.
We can glean several lessons on communicating with God from this passage. To discover them we will ask a series of questions...
How should we pray?
The word "praying" carries the idea of a constant attitude. We must be always ready in an attitude of prayer. If another Christian soldier needs prayer support we should be ready to pray.
When should we pray?
When our verse says "always", it means "always." This is more than just the attitude of prayer we saw above. This means never missing an opportunity.
In fact that's exactly what always means. The original language could be translated "in every opportunity." We can't ever miss an opportunity to use that communication line God has provided. It's imperative that we capture every moment that requires prayer.
What kind of prayers should we pray?
Paul mentions two words regarding communicating with God. The first is the word "prayer." This has more a general application. This is the everyday kind of communication.
We must keep that line open to always hear the still small voice of God. When we have kept our prayer life current we have a much easier time hearing what God has to say to us. We're already in tune to what He desires.
Paul also mentions "supplications." This carries more of the meaning of a petition, asking for something. There are times in our lives when we may need God's help. It's in those times we petition God. We send our supplications to Him, awaiting an answer. If we ask in faith He will do it.
In what way should we pray?
This verse reveals we should always pray "in the Spirit." But what does that mean?
Praying in the Spirit is more than just some subjective, experiential action. Our hearts must be prepared not only to pray but also to respond to the answer God has for us.
How is this done? Think about the other time Paul used the Spirit. He used the Holy Spirit to describe the sword. It is the sword of the Spirit. Why?
Because that's how the Holy Spirit works. He works through God's Word, the Bible. And that's what it means to pray in the Spirit. We must be sensitive to God's leading when we pray. That can best be done by diligently studying the Bible. So praying in the Spirit means being spiritually in tune with God through His Word.
What's the application?
We must "watch" in prayer. This word rings with diligence. It's similar to a military guard watching over a fort, standing on the guard tower so that all inside might be safe. If he falls asleep, the enemy might just come charging in and take everything.
The Christian soldier must watch diligently. That's done through prayer. When we pray we hone our spiritual discernment. We see things through God's eyes rather than our own. When that happens we exemplify the makings of a real soldier of Christ.
And notice Paul reveals that this isn't just asking God for ourselves. We also must keep "all saints" in prayer. We need to watch for each other as well. We are comrades in arms. Our brothers and sisters fight along side us. We must keep their interests and spiritual safety in mind as well.
The bottom line is communicating with God keeps us going. It keeps us in contact with our Commander, Jesus Christ. It also helps protect us by keeping us spiritually mindful of who we are in Christ. Finally it supplies us with our daily needs. God provides for the faithful soldier.
God never leaves His soldiers to fend for themselves. It was Jesus who charged into battle ahead of us. He went before us to die on a cruel cross, to die in our place. Today He continues to lead His followers against all the forces of Satan's army.
What is required of us is to be good soldiers. We must fight faithfully for our Master. We must keep the communication and supply lines open if we are to succeed in this battle.
This study on prayer is the last in a series of Bible studies.
Click here to see other lessons in this series.
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