Three prayers for the persecuted church…

Hearing stories from the persecuted church often leaves us feeling overwhelmed and powerless, and sometimes unsure of what to pray. Here are three simple prayers for the persecuted church.

Pray for the persecuted

‘If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together.’ 1 Corinthians 12:26

As Christians, we are all part of one body. When one part suffers, the rest of the body suffers too. There are many ways that we can pray for our brothers and sisters:

  • That they may be strengthened with all power, according to God’s glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy (Colossians 1:12)
  • Physical protection from attack, starvation and disease
  • Finding refuge, comfort and strength in the gospel
  • The ability to love and pray for their persecutors

Pray for the persecutors

‘You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you’ Matthew 5:43

Jesus teaches us to love and pray for those who persecute us. We can pray for the people persecuting our brothers and sisters in many ways:

  • That God would open the eyes of persecutors to the gospel
  • For those who will face severe persecution from their families if they convert
  • That God would use the witness of Christians to lead persecutors to the gospel, as He used Paul and Silas in the Philippian prison guard’s conversion (Acts 16:32)

Pray for the church

‘There is one body and one Spirit – just as you were called to one hope that belongs to your call – one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father over all, who is over all and through all and in all.’ Ephesians 4:4-6

It may feel like our brothers and sisters are far away, but we all follow the same God. We should pray Christ’s body, the church, as it faces persecution:

  • Give thanks for the opportunities the church has to share the gospel
  • Pray that Christians all over the world would be generous towards their brothers and sisters
  • Pray that the church would grow in places where the number of Christians are declining
  • That Christians would draw together, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit (Ephesians 4:3)

We would like to help you pray daily for persecuted Christians. We have produced a six-week daily devotional, Journey into North Korea, as part of our resources for the upcoming International Days of Prayer from 2-9 November 2014. Our full resources will be available at the end of September on our International Days of Prayer website.

Open Doors Australia Youth will also be running a global prayer event, Shockwave, at the same time – to pray fervently for the persecuted church.

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