There are some significant prayers throughout the Bible, and many are by David and others in the Psalms. There’s also a lot of petitions by the major prophets in their writings. (all emphasis mine)
One of these is Daniel, who had two occasions where he went to the Father for very specific reasons. The first was when Nebuchadnezzar had a troubling dream and demanded the interpretation be made known to him. The hard part was the dream had to be revealed without him telling anything about it. Needless to say, the so-called wise men of Babylon could not begin to give the king a suitable answer, and because of this, they were threatened with annihilation. This took place in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign.
Daniel (Belteshazzar) and his companions, Hananiah (Shadrach), Mishael (Meschach) and Azariah (Abednego), were to be among the ones to be killed. However, Daniel asked their keeper to get him an audience with the king so that he could give him the interpretation of his dream. Daniel and his companions, who were possibly in their mid to late teens at the time, sought mercy from the God of Heaven. The “mystery” was revealed to Daniel, and he told the king what the dream was and what the vision represented. Nebuchadnezzar tried to give Daniel full credit and honor, but in Daniel 2:45b, Daniel said, “… A Great God has made known to the king what shall be after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation sure.” Daniel received many honors that lasted to the end of his days, but he never failed to worship and give praise and glory to the Heavenly Father, no matter who was on the earthly throne.
Probably the most significant prayer offered by Daniel was near the end of the 70-year captivity, and he made a sincere plea for all the people. Daniel 9 contains this prayer, and it is one of confession of sins and about their having turned away from God. He acknowledged that their transgressions caused their captivity, and he knew that the time of captivity was coming to an end. He asked for forgiveness and mercy on God’s chosen people.
It would do each of us a service to take the time to read Daniel’s prayer in Chapter 9 and bring it into today’s terms to see that we are definitely in need of God’s mercy and forgiveness.
Our Savior gave several prayers, and one has been called “The Lord’s Prayer.” It is repeated in numerous church services and actually should be called “The Apostle’s Prayer.” Jesus was giving them an outline of how to approach the Father without going through all kinds of needless self-serving phrases, which He accused the religious leaders of His day of doing.
First and foremost, we need to show the Father that we acknowledge and accept His power and glory and that He is our only Creator. We accept Him as our Heavenly Father, and His name is “Hallowed,” which means Holy or Consecrated. We are to realize that everything belongs to our God, and His Kingdom is forever.
Next, we ask for our daily needs and also ask forgiveness for our sins. There’s no point in trying to conceal them as our Father knows every thought, word, and deed that we have done. Added to this, we must forgive others for sinning against us, or we will not be forgiven ourselves (Matthew 6:14-15).
Finally, we are to ask to be kept from temptation and be delivered from evil. Once we have the Holy Spirit within us, through prayer and supplication, we will be “convicted in our conscience” any time we do sin. And until we actually depart from this evil world, we will sin (Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23). We have the blessing of assured forgiveness for all our sins, as given in 1 John 1:8-10.
Another of Jesus’ prayers was in the Garden of Gethsemane, and it was extremely personal between Him and the Father. He asked for the burden to be removed if the Father was willing, but He in no way refused to fulfill His destiny. The act of torture and murder that He would go through was terrible but was actually a minor part of His reasoning. Jesus knew full well that God cannot tolerate any sin of any kind, and when every sin ever committed and would be committed was to be laid directly on Him, He knew He would be separated for a brief time from the Father for the first time ever. This had never been done before and will never be done again. When the Savior said, “It is finished!” His amazing gift was complete, and He was reunited completely with the Father.
Considering this, is it any wonder that anyone who does not accept Jesus as their Savior will not spend eternity with Him? His gift cannot be bought or earned but is offered to those who will call on Him to be saved (Joel 2:32; Acts 2:21 and Romans 10:13).
The prayer in John 17 is the one that could truly be labeled “The Lord’s Prayer.” He knew His time here was about to end, and being God, He knew what the future held for all His true believers – for all of us. AS with the prayer from Daniel 9, this prayer deserves to be studied by all of us.
Jesus gave all praise, glory and blessings to the Father and asked Him to “glorify Your Son, that He may glorify You, since You have given Him authority over all flesh to give eternal life to all whom You have given Him” (John 17:1b-2). He thanked the Father for allowing Him, in human form, to accomplish the work He was given. He states in v.5, “And now Father, glorify Me in Your own presence with the glory that I had with You before the world existed.” We know from scripture that Jesus was always a part of the Godhead (John 1:1-3).
He was praying for His apostles at this time, but we can be assured He was praying for all who would ever become a part of His precious flock right to the very end of the existence of this evil world.
Verse 20-21 specifically says, “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word, that they may all be one, just as You Father, are in Me, and I in You, that they also may be in Us so that the world may believe that You have sent Me.”
This is amplified in Romans 10:9-13 with the steps to Salvation. We must call out to Jesus and admit we are sinners in need of a Savior, believe He died for our sins and was raised by the Father to conquer sin and death for all who will receive and accept Him, and ask Him to be our Savior forever. When we receive and accept the gift given by our Savior, the Holy Spirit will live within us.
As you can see, there’s no monetary cost involved, and our only actions are to receive and accept His gift. Anything else would be an insult to His sacrifice made for us.
To those who accept this world over the Savior, and to those who will follow false prophets inspired by Satan, the outcome is in Revelation 20:11-15. There are no exceptions; no other way.
Today would not be too early to have Jesus come into your life and for Him to prepare a place in Heaven for you (John 14:1-3). There is no better time. Tomorrow could be too late, and you could find yourself in the 7-year tribulation. By the way, at least 2/3 of the world’s population will be killed during that time.
Go to 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 to read about the pretribulation Rapture of all true believers. Once you have Jesus, your eternity will be beyond wonderful.
Hope to see you there when He calls!