Overcoming Spiritual Roadblocks; Devotion #5 – Praying With Authority
In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:23-24
When we see the flashing lights of a police car behind us, we pull over to the side of the road and await the officer approaching the vehicle to ask for our licence and registration. We comply because we know that the officer has the authority to do that. The officer cannot do that when they are off duty and driving their own car. They can only stop us because of the authority of the badge which they carry.
In a similar manner, we carry a badge of authority in prayer because we belong to Jesus. We have his badge, his authority. As we accept Jesus as Lord, we are adopted by the Father through the justifying work of the Spirit, who allows us to cry out “Abba Father” (Rom 8:15 and Gal 4:6). As adopted children of God, we can come to him at any time. I came across a quote from Tim Keller which expressed this beautifully:
“The only person who dares wake up a king at 3:00 am for a glass of water is a child. We have that kind of access.”
↟ Rest Stop ↟
Think about the quote from Tim Keller. Have you ever thought about your relationship with God in that way? Does thinking of yourself as a child of the king change how you might approach prayer?
With such access, we can come before the Lord at any time. We can approach God’s throne with confidence because we have the authority of his children (Heb 4:16). We have the authority of access, and we have the authority of request.
When we come to the Father in the name of Jesus, we are promised by Christ that “my father will give you whatever you ask in my name” (John 16:23). Our requests are heard through Jesus and the Father will respond to those prayers.
↟ Rest Stop ↟
Read Ephesians 2:6. Where does the apostle Paul say that we are seated? What does that mean for us when we come to pray?
Christ’s work of redemption allows the reconciliation of humanity with God. The relationship which Adam had with the Father is being redeemed and so too is the task God gave to Adam. Adam had dominion in Eden. He had authority and was a co-labourer with God. God invites us today into that place of domination and authority as through the Holy Spirit we are invited to join in the work the Father is doing just as Jesus did (John 5:19). One of the ways we can participate in that work is by praying.
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Think about a time when you experienced the power of praying in the name of Jesus. How did that differ from adding a perfunctory “in Jesus’ name” to the end of a more typical prayer?
When we pray in the authority of our position in Christ and pray into God’s will in the name and authority of Jesus, then our prayers become powerful and effective. It’s time to pray in authority.
In a prayer time, ask God to bring to mind attitudes or experiences that may hinder your prayer as it relates to how you ask God. Respond with confession or forgiveness as it seems appropriate or needed.
Listen for God’s gentle voice of correction and/or encouragement as you grow in the adventure of asking God in prayer. Record how you sense God is calling you to proceed. Be sure to apply discernment to what you sense God is saying to you.
These devotions were written by Martin Boardman, Prayer Mobilizer with Dunamis Fellowship Canada, in partnership with Presbyterian Reformed Ministries International.