How to pray scripturally for the unbeliever you love

This outline of prayer was developed from a series of promises from God’s Word that I had been using in my own private prayer journal over a number of years. This outline was first presented in the Taylor Christian and Missionary Alliance Church on a Wednesday evening service in the spring of 1989. I shared it in an email with some fellow pastors in the year 2000 with the verses filled out and key words emphasized. Here is the outline in the original form. I offer it back again so that it can be shared further for specific prayer for those in the lives of fellow believers whom they love and want to come to Christ. It is one of the themes in the testimonies of many believers of my parents’ generation that there were several people or more praying specifically for them for an extended period before they actually came to a profession of faith in Christ.

Too often prayer meetings in our churches become dry renditions of physical ailments (the weekly casualty list), and prayer requests outside that ‘safe’ zone become fodder for gossip. I am afraid that there are actually some in our church fellowships that seem to use soliciting prayer requests as a cover for keeping tabs on other people. Here is some fodder for directing others in the body of Christ back to the most serious and most scriptural kinds of requests.

I. Pray with the assurance that it is God’s will to save those apart from Christ

Scripture references: I Timothy 2:1-4, II Peter 3:9, Ezekiel 18:13

Note also I John 5:14-15: God promises to answer prayers in accord with his will, and his will is expressed in his written Word.

II. Pray in the name of Jesus for the glory of God: John 14:13-14.

Claim the fulfillment of purpose of the death and resurrection of Jesus in their salvation: John 12:23-24, II Corinthians 5:l4-15

III. Pray in the assurance of faith.

Matthew 21:21-22, Mark 11:23-24, James 1:-8

IV. Pray with a clean heart

A. While abiding in Christ: John 15:7

B. Not indulging in known sin: Psalm 66: 18

C. Having forgiven others: Mark 11:25

D. With pure motives: James 4:3

V. Continue in prayer

God promises to answer persistent prayer: Luke 18:1-7, I Thessalonians 5:17

VI. Make specific requests for:

A. Them to encounter witnesses (including yourself): Romans10:14-5, Matthew 9:38

B. Overcoming of their spiritual blindness and the conviction of the Spirit, the witness of the Spirit to the Lord Jesus: II Corinthians 4:4-6, Luke 8:12, John 6:44,15:26-27,16:8-11, I Thessa1onians 1: 5. Prayer for someone else’s salvation is definitely spiritual warfare!

C. For the success of the Word: Isaiah 55:1l, Hebrews 4:12, I Peter 1:23-25

VII. Pray specifically by name for those you are concerned about: Matthew 7:7-11.


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