Prayer and His Spirit

We know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit maketh intercession for us. (Romans 8:26)

Probably none of us really know as much about prayer as we should—but as students of the Word of God we may agree that only the Spirit can pray effectively.

The idea has been expressed that “wrestling in prayer” is always a good thing, but that is by no means true. Extreme religious “exercises” may be undergone with no higher motive than to get our own way!

The spiritual quality of a prayer is determined not by its intensity but by its origin. In evaluating prayer we should inquire who is doing the praying—our determined hearts, or the Holy Spirit? If the prayer originates with the Spirit, then the wrestling can be beautiful and wonderful; but if we are the victims of our own overheated desires, our praying can be as carnal as any other act.

Consider Jacob’s wrestling: “a man wrestled with him till daybreak.” But when Jacob had been beaten upon, he cried, “I will not let you go unless you bless me!” That wrestling was of divine origin, and the blessed results are known to every Bible student!


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