Here is a list help you pray for revival in the church and the further advancement of God’s kingdom.
Paul exhorted the Christians in Ephesus to: “…pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayer and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints (Ephesians 6:18).”
For us this includes being in regular intercession for our world.
Table of contents
Praying for Personal Repentance
“…Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles…” Hebrews 12:1
John wrote, “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives (I John 1:8-10).”
Effective intercession must include personal confession.
Refusing to acknowledge and turn from our own disobedience always results in a form of spiritual self-deception.
As Jesus explained, “First take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye (Matthew 7:5).”
As you pray, put into practice John’s exhortation. Hold your life up to such passages as I Peter 3:8-12.
Praying for the Infilling of the Holy Spirit for Life and Ministry
Jesus commands us, if we are to be his witnesses, to be clothed with his power. Jesus urged his first disciples and us to be clothed with the power of the Holy Spirit for missions.
Paul exhorted the church, “Do not be drunk on wine … Instead, be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18).”
The seedbed of theological, spiritual, and moral decline in the church is often lifeless, dry orthodoxy. Also, the church’s evangelism and overseas mission often falter because of reliance upon human strength, rather than empowerment of the Holy Spirit.
Having a biblical framework of theology is critical. But our head must be connected to a heart ablaze with the life of God.
As Paul instructed the church in Ephesus to be filled with the Spirit, pray for the church to be filled with the presence of God’s Spirit. Pray for yourself to be filled with the Holy Spirit so you may be empowered to do this work of prayer for the church, and to be equipped to do the work of Jesus Christ.
Praying for the World
1. Pray for workers: When Jesus saw the crowds, he instructed his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the Harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field (Matthew 9:38).”
In context, Jesus was looking at the sheep of Israel.
In part, he was instructing his disciples to pray for true workers to be raised up to shepherd his people. This should be our continuous prayer as we intercede for the church.
But, it also applies to the vast fields of people stretching around the world. Besides praying for godly shepherds to lead the church, pray for workers to be raised up to minister around the world.
2. Pray for Open doors: Paul wrote the Colossians, “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ (Colossians 4:2-3).”
As you devote yourself to prayer, ask the Lord to open doors for the world mission endeavor to proclaim the mystery of Christ among even more people.
3. Pray for the Gospel to Spread and to be Honored: Paul asked the church to intercede for his mission team, “brothers, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored … (2 Thessalonians 3:1).”
How does the gospel spread?
It takes people who are willing to go and share God’s truth.
It also requires Christians who are willing to stand with them in persistent intercession.
How does God’s message come to be honored? In answer to the church’s intercession God will bring the spiritual climate in which the Scripture is honored for what it is: God’s truth.
Our prayer should not only be for workers and open doors, but for the message to spread and find a place of honor in the hearts of people.
Setting the Captives free
1. Pray with Expectation: (Read Luke 18:25-27.) No matter how impossible the situation may look or how entrenched in spiritual darkness may be, God is able to cause his light to penetrate to the heart.
2. Pray for the Father to Draw People: (Read John 6:44) In our sinful state, none of us are capable of coming out of spiritual darkness and drawing near to God on our own. Only through the drawing of God the Father were we able to find freedom in Christ.
As we pray for people, in line with the clear will of God, our prayer should be for God to draw them to the grace, love and truth found only in Jesus Christ.
3. Pray for an understanding of Jesus Christ: (Read Matthew 16:17) Personally grasping the reality and the relevance of Jesus Christ comes only through the Holy Spirit’s work. We come to believe that Jesus is the Christ as the Holy Spirit imparts faith. Pray for the Holy Spirit to bring a true understanding of Jesus Christ to those blinded by sin and Satan.
4. Pray for the Holy Spirit’s Conviction of Sin, Righteousness and Judgment: (Read John 16:9-11.) The Holy Spirit brings conviction to people of sin, righteousness and judgment.
Concerning sin, the Holy Spirit brings an awareness to people of the sin and the spiritual darkness into which their sin has plunged their lives.
Concerning righteousness, the Holy Spirit brings a personal conviction that only through the accomplished work of Jesus Christ can a person be right with God. It is through the Spirit’s activity that people begin to understand their need to be put right with God.
Concerning judgment, the Holy Spirit brings an understanding that to continue in rebellion against God is to embrace the same kind of judgment which the prince of the world has already received.
As we intercede for people bound in spiritual darkness, our prayers should include the request for the Spirit of God to bring his conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment.
Bringing Down Strongholds
1. Focus on Jesus: First we are to focus on Jesus Christ in worship, obedience, and prayer. To let the twisting of truth, idolatry, or any sin to consume our attention is to lose our focus. No matter how great the darkness, our eyes are to be steadfastly on Jesus Christ as Lord.
2. Confession: Next we need to be honest before the Lord in confessing and turning from any idolatry, immorality or rebellion we are harboring within ourselves. This includes sins of omission. James taught, “Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins (James 4:17).” Have we been in regular prayer for the church and the world? Have we been living our life according to God’s will as revealed through scripture?
3. Pray to be Filled with God’s Spirit, Wisdom, Discernment & Love: Neither our wisdom nor arguments will bring deliverance from the stronghold of darkness revealed. Only by the power of God’s Spirit will the obstruction be removed. God’s wisdom, discernment and love are required if our labor for renewal is to result in lasting change. As you pray, ask the Lord to fill his people with his Spirit and the love, wisdom and discernment needed for effective ministry.
4. In the Light of Scripture: All spiritual activity needs to be evaluated in the light of clear Biblical teaching concerning the true nature of God and his activity in the world.
5. Persistent Intercession: We are to respond with persistent intercession for those perpetuating and those influenced by the stronghold.
God has chosen to work through the intercession of his people to bring convicting, and awareness of spiritual bondage and an urgency for finding true freedom in Christ.
When a block is discerned, we are to pray until the stronghold is removed and those in darkness are finding true spiritual liberty.
6. Resist the Demonic: Peter instructed the church: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith … (1 Peter 5:6-9).” With the praise of God, the Word of God, persistent prayer, the cleansing blood of Jesus, humbling ourselves in obedience and in the strong name of Jesus, we are to resist these spiritual forces of the evil one until they are fleeing.
Rejoicing in the Lord
Paul encouraged the church: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:4-7).”
As we pray, our intercession is to be saturated with joy and praise in the Lord. Our God is able and willing to answer.
1. Rejoice in God’s Faithfulness to Answer Prayer: (Read 2 Corinthians 18-20.) As you hear and pray according to the promises of God, of what can we be confident? Our joy in praying comes from the fact that God is faithful.
2. Rejoice in God’s Invitation: (Read Revelation 3:19-20.) How does God deal with those whom he loves? How does Jesus respond to those in the church who repent?
3. Rejoice in the Open Door: (Read Matthew 7:7-11.) As we consistently pray for open doors, what reason does this passage give us to rejoice?
4. Rejoice in our Lord’s Victory: In response to the confession of Peter, Jesus declared: “… you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven (Matthew 16:18-19).” The strongholds of Satan cannot withstand when those who are grounded on the rock of Jesus Christ move forward in obedience. Because the satanic forces have been bound through Jesus’ victory on the cross, we can take up the keys of the kingdom, step forward in his authority and unlock the forces of spiritual darkness. What are the keys of the kingdom? They represent the authority that Jesus has won to redeem people from spiritual darkness.
What do the keys of the kingdom do? They unlock the gates of hell and enable the captive to find freedom. What are the specific keys? They are the spiritual means through which Jesus administers his liberating power. One of the primary keys by which Jesus brings liberty to the captive is prayer. Whether it be an individual, a population group, or a religious body, a chief means for breaking Satan’s web of deception is prayer.
As we pray for the people and against the spiritual strongholds affecting their lives, we can rejoice even before seeing the results. Jesus has won the victory. Before the forward march of the church, the strongholds must collapse. As we persist in prayer, God will work his deliverance.
Author: Pastor Bill Dean.
By Dave Butts
For many years now, the Lord has put the issue of revival praying upon my heart. Initially, I must admit, my prayers were fairly generic: “O Lord, please revive us.” As I have grown in my approach to prayer, I’ve learned more specific requests, especially in using the Word of God to help format and provide content for my prayers. Psalm 80 and Isaiah 63 and 64 have helped me to petition the Lord for revival with both variety and the power of Scripture behind my requests.
Recently I have been praying through the Psalms again. I began to lift before the Lord the words of Psalm 74. To my delight, I found another “revival” prayer. My desire is that this Psalm will provide fuel for the fire of intercession and petition in your life as you beseech God to once again bless us with His Presence in revival.
As you pray through Psalm 74, please notice that before major sections I share some comments to help you see the aspects of revival in each passage. I encourage you to move beyond Bible study however, to passionately praying the heart of the Psalmist.
The Awareness of the Need for Revival
At the beginning of Psalm 74 we find the agonizing realization that God’s presence is not near. In fact, because of sin, there has been a sense of rejection. As is typical in revival praying, there is a cry for God to remember His people and return to them:
“Why have You rejected us forever, O God? Why does Your anger smolder against the sheep of Your pasture? Remember the people You purchased of old, the tribe of Your inheritance, whom You redeemed – Mount Zion, where You dwelt. Turn Your steps toward these everlasting ruins, all this destruction the enemy has brought on the sanctuary” (Psa. 74:1-3).
The Result of God’s Apparent Absence
When sin is accepted in the life of the people of God, the consequences begin to be felt. The enemies of God and His people begin to afflict the nation. Notice that the Psalmist uses the phrase, “Your foes roared.” This reminds us that our ultimate enemy is Satan, the one whom Peter tells us roams about as a roaring lion seeking whom he might devour (1 Pet. 5:8).
“Your foes roared in the place where You met with us; they set up their standards as signs. They behaved like men wielding axes to cut through a thicket of trees. They smashed all the carved paneling with their axes and hatchets. They burned Your sanctuary to the ground; they defiled the dwelling place of Your Name. They said in their hearts, ‘We will crush them completely!’ They burned every place where God was worshiped in the land. We are given no miraculous signs; no prophets are left, and none of us knows how long this will be” (Psa. 74:4-9).
Turning to an Awareness of the God to Whom We Are Praying
An important lesson to learn in prayer is that ultimately we need to be concerned about God and His reputation and the extension of His kingdom and purposes. Revival really isn’t about us having better meetings or being happy. It is about God’s Name being exalted and more praise and honor given to Him on this planet. Notice that the Psalmist asked God to go to work, because He is the one being reviled and mocked through the attacks on His people. Note also that this portion of the Psalm then moves into a wonderful expression of recognizing God’s power and ability to handle any attack. It is as we understand the awesome power of the One we are addressing in prayer, that our faith will grow and we will begin to pray in a way that moves the hand of God.
“How long will the enemy mock You, O God? Will the foe revile Your name forever? Why do You hold back Your hand, Your right hand? Take it from the folds of Your garment and destroy them!
“But You, O God, are my king from of old; You bring salvation upon the earth. It was You who split open the sea by Your power; You broke the heads of the monster in the waters. It was You who crushed the heads of Leviathan and gave him as food to the creatures of the desert. It was You who opened up springs and streams; You dried up the ever flowing rivers. The day is Yours, and Yours also the night; You established the sun and moon. It was You who set all the boundaries of the earth; You made both summer and winter” (Psa. 74:10-17).
The Request for Revival
Once again, this prayer is focused upon the honor of God and the integrity of His covenant with His people. The concern is for the Lord and how He is perceived by the nations. The cry for God to rise up and defend His cause will mean that Israel will once again walk in right relationship to their God. When He prospers them, they cry that God will be honored, not only by Israel, but by those nations in the area who see how He protects and prospers His people when they obey Him.
“Remember how the enemy has mocked You, O LORD, how foolish people have reviled Your name. Do not hand over the life of Your dove to wild beasts; do not forget the lives of Your afflicted people forever. Have regard for Your covenant, because haunts of violence fill the dark places of the land. Do not let the oppressed retreat in disgrace; may the poor and needy praise Your name. Rise up, O God, and defend Your cause; remember how fools mock You all day long. Do not ignore the clamor of Your adversaries, the uproar of Your enemies, which rises continually” (Psa. 74:18-23).
Here is a prayer to pray that embraces the principles of revival in Psalm 74 and makes them our own:
Father, like ancient Israel, we too live in a day in which Your Name is mocked. Many times this happens because of the shortcomings and sins of those of us who are followers of Your holy Son, Jesus. Lord, we confess our sins and the way we have lived our lives as Christians apart from complete dependence upon You. We repent of this shameful self-sufficiency and throw ourselves upon Your mercy.
Gracious God, our lifestyle has often led unbelievers to insult and attack Your very nature and character. We ask You, Lord, to rise up and defend Yourself. Would You awaken Your people to the reality of Your presence in our midst and in so doing transform our lives into the character of Christ that You desire to see in us? May Your life lived out in Your Church begin to demonstrate to the world Your love, grace, mercy and overwhelming power on behalf of Your saints. Would You allow the kingdom principles that govern heaven to begin to be made manifest on earth? We ask You to revive Your people so that we may rejoice in You and demonstrate in our lives the awesome, transforming power of Jesus Christ in His Church. Amen.
–Dave Butts is the co-founder of Harvest Prayer Ministries. A popular speaker, Dave is the author or co-author of 8 books, including When God Shows Up, from which this article is taken. (C) Harvest Prayer Ministries.
Here are some Bible verses about revival for you to meditate on as you are seeking God for personal revival and revival in the church and our nation.
Revival is not some meeting you attend or something that happens because of a great man or woman of God. The real meaning of revival in the Bible is when God’s people realize their need to be spiritually restored and revitalized in their walk with Jesus. It starts at home and then spreads to our churches, communities, cities, and our nation. That is the true revival meaning biblically.
Please take a moment to meditate on each of these revival scriptures and allow God to plant them deep in your heart.
Bookmark this page so you can return to it and keep reading them. Share them with your friends and family. Together we can once again see spiritual revival change our hearts and the hearts of others that so desperately need him.
11 Bible Verses About Revival And ReformationEzra 9:9
For we were slaves, but in his unfailing love our God did not abandon us in our slavery. Instead, he caused the kings of Persia to treat us favorably. He revived us so we could rebuild the Temple of our God and repair its ruins. He has given us a protective wall in Judah and Jerusalem.
Then we will never abandon you again. Revive us so we can call on your name once more.
Won’t you revive us again, so your people can rejoice in you?
I lie in the dust; revive me by your word.
Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles.
In your faithful love, O Lord, hear my cry; let me be revived by following your regulations.
Zion will be restored by justice; those who repent will be revived by righteousness.
The high and lofty one who lives in eternity, the Holy One, says this: “I live in the high and holy place with those whose spirits are contrite and humble. I restore the crushed spirit of the humble and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts.
“And the day will come when I will cause the ancient glory of Israel to revive, and then, Ezekiel, your words will be respected. Then they will know that I am the Lord.”
The wild animals in the fields will thank me, the jackals and owls, too, for giving them water in the desert. Yes, I will make rivers in the dry wasteland so my chosen people can be refreshed.
Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away. 20 Then times of refreshment will come from the presence of the Lord, and he will again send you Jesus, your appointed Messiah.
Prayer For Revival And Spiritual Awakening2 Chronicles 7:14
14 Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
God is not done yet. I believe there will be another great awakening in the world just like the revivals in the Bible and millions of people will come to Jesus. As we seek God for revival and pray and believe God for another revival, His Spirit will bring restoration and healing to our land.
May it be so! Revive us oh Lord!
What are some of your favorite revival scriptures that you are standing upon when asking God for another great awakening to happen? Please share them with us in the comment section below.
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“Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for Him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all mankind will see God’s salvation” – (Luke 3:4-6).
We are right now living in desperate days. The Church in many parts of the world needs revival, and God wants to use each one of us to prepare the way for a mighty outpouring of His Spirit. I am sure that you sense the urgency of the hour. It is not hard to see that everything is not right. God is trying to get our full attention. It is truly time to cry out to the Lord and become men and women of fervent prayer. We need God’s intervention in our cities and nations. The valleys of defeat must be filled, the mountains of disbelief must be leveled, the crooked places of dishonesty must be straightened, and the rough places of disobedience must be made smooth.
It was almost 25 years ago on the mission field when I wrote the following two paragraphs in a newsletter. I find that today I must still ask myself the same questions I asked then:
“Am I desperate enough for revival? Do I realize the desperate condition of my country?” And if I trust in religious organization, material wealth, popular preaching, shallow evangelistic crusades, there will never be revival. But when confidence in my flesh is smashed and I realize my desperate wretchedness and emptiness before God, then and only then will God break through. “Lord, make me ready for revival. Revive me.”
I challenge you to join me in prayer for revival for our lives and for the nations. I call for prayer that is strong, prevailing, believing, God-moving, hell-defeating, devil-routing, sinner-saving, believer-sanctifying, Christ-exalting and worker-producing—prayer that takes all that we are and have. God Himself will motivate us to pray these prayers that have extraordinary consequences if we are only willing, willing to pay the price. Pray that God may fill us all with the very passion of Christ, with the power and persistence of the Holy Spirit, with the burdening sense of the Church’s plight and world’s appalling need, that the wheels of revival may be set in motion.
“Then we will not turn away from you; revive us, and we will call on your name. Restore us, O Lord God Almighty; make your face to shine upon us, that we may be saved” – (Psalm 80:18-19).
How do we Personally Prepare the Way for Revival?
“The coming revival must begin with a great prayer revival. It is in the closet, with the door shut, that the sound of abundant revival will be first heard. An increase in the secret prayer of ministers and members will be the sure herald of blessing.” Andrew Murray
- Prepare yourself in the way of blessing through intensive prayer – Pray with all your heart, asking God to enlarge your prayer and worship life. Make time for God, and practice fasting.
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray…” (2 Chronicles 7:14).
- Be serious about personal revival – Instead of watching TV, pray. Don’t get caught up in the ways of the world. Lay aside those worldly pursuits.
“… and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land” – (2 Chronicles 7:14).
- Become dissatisfied with sin and ask God to convict your heart – Be sensitive to His conviction.
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” – (Psalm 139:23-24).
- Repent thoroughly – Don’t tolerate sin in your own life. Let godly sorrow over your sin touch you deeply.
“Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight… Surely you desire truth in the inner parts; you teach me wisdom in the inmost place” – (Psalm 51:4-6).
- Make restitution whenever possible –Make sure that your relationships are right.
“Live in harmony with one another” – (Romans 12:16).
- Practice living the Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 5 – 7 is the job description of holy living. Ask God to transform your life and teach you to live to please Him. Prayerfully study the Sermon on the Mount regularly.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted” – (Matthew 5:3-4).
- Choose to narrow your interests – If you narrow your interests, God will enlarge your heart. We can so easily be distracted from prayer, but revival calls for a focused vision on what really matters. This is the time to pray and hunger after God wholeheartedly.
“I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands” – (Psalm 119:10).
- Make a new commitment to reach out to the lost – Pray an ask God for opportunities, and He will help you. Begin to pray, care and share Christ with those who do not know Him. Follow the example of Jesus.
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost” – (Luke 19:10).
- Have faith in God – Begin to expect God to move through your prayers. Believe that He does want to pour out His spirit and bring revival.
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” – (Hebrews 11:1).
Revival begins with us. It is each one of us getting our lives straight and turning from the crooked paths. Take seriously the need for personal revival. Take seriously the need for prayer. God is dealing with His Church.
“The great work of intercession is needed for this returning to the Lord. It is here that the coming revival must find its strength. Let us begin as individuals to plead with God, confessing whatever we see of sin or hindrance in ourselves or others. If there were no other sin, surely the lack of prayer is matter enough for repentance, confession, and returning to the Lord.” – Andrew Murray
Together in the Harvest,
Intercessors Arise International
International House of Prayer (IHOP) KC Staff