Prayer To Know Jesus Better

Knowing Jesus: Prayer

Prayer To Know Jesus Better

Download a PDF of the whole Bible study, including questions.

THIS WEEK WE STUDY A BIBLICAL OVERVIEW on prayer as we all need to be repeatedly challenged to develop this area of our lives.

Most believers are very weak here, but effective prayer is the determinant factor in one’s eternal accomplishments! How is this daily discipline in your spiritual life?

As this relates to me personally, you, I commute into DC every week of Session, so my sleeping patterns, (give the three hour time zone change for Danielle and me) are very erratic. I have learned to live with that. Accordingly, when I am awake sometimes in the early hours of the morning, I take that as my signal to get up and pray. I have turned a negative into a positive. I look forward to these precious hours with the Lord. My prayers tend to be consumed with a now 19-year-old, persevering, God-given objective: To plant 200 effective ministries in 200 capitals throughout the world.

Looking forward to seeing you at this week’s study.

Ralph Drollinger
President & Founder

The purpose of prayer is to express our submission to the sovereignty of God and our trust in His faithfulness.

Prayer is the means by which we express all that is in our hearts to our loving and wise heavenly Father. Prayer is not to give God information, because God knows everything.

Prayer brings us into reverent communion with our Creator, worshipping Him and acknowledging Him as the Giver of all things.


1. What did the disciples ask of Jesus in Luke 11:1?

It happened that while Jesus was praying in a certain place, after He had finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.”

2. Read Romans 8:26

In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words;

a. According to the Apostle Paul, who assists us in our prayers?

b. In light of that, what should we do when we are not sure what to pray for?


1. What does Psalm 34:15 say about the Lord?

The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous And His ears are open to their cry.

2. What did David bring before God in prayer in Psalm 142:2?

I pour out my complaint before Him; I declare my trouble before Him.

3. How are we encouraged to approach God per Hebrews 4:16?

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

4. Though we have the privilege of access, what caution does Ecclesiastes 5:1-2 advise?

Guard your steps as you go to the house of God and draw near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know they are doing evil. Do not be hasty in word or impulsive in thought to bring up a matter in the presence of God. For God is in heaven and you are on the earth; therefore let your words be few.

5. What comfort does 1Peter 5:6-7 offer believers?

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.


1. For whom and for what purpose did the Church pray in Acts 12:5?

So Peter was kept in the prison, but prayer for him was being made fervently by the church to God.

2. How did God answer their prayers according to Acts 12:7?

And, behold, the angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and a light shone in the cell: and he struck Peter’s side, and woke him up, saying, ‘Get up quickly. And his chains fell off his hands.

3. Besides answers, what else does God grant to those who pray according to Philippians 4:6-7?

Be anxious for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


What is effective (energeo) prayer? It is energetic, passionate prayers of believers that accomplish much; those are the kinds of prayers that are heard by the Lord.

Are you a passionate prayer warrior or are your prayers reminiscent of cold mush? Reflective of this serious form of prayer is crying. No less than seven times in Scripture is crying associated with answered prayer (cf.

Psalm 18:6; 34:6; 102:1; Isaiah 24:14; Lamentations 2:19; Joel 1:14 and Matthew 15:22).


1. Luke 18:1 states,

Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart. The disciples were taught that they should always pray, and not . . .

2. What is God’s will for believers in Christ Jesus per 1Thessalonians 5:17?

Pray without ceasing.

3. When should believers pray per Ephesians 6:18?

With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.


1. What did Jesus teach His disciples to expect if they persisted in prayer per Luke 11:5-10?

Then He said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and goes to him at midnight and says to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine has come to me from a journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; and from inside he answers and says, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been shut and my children and I are in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.

’ “I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will get up and give him as much as he needs. So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened.

2. What does Jesus teach as a requirement for answered prayer per John 15:7?

If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

3. According to 1John 5:14, what is our confidence as we pray?

This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.

4. List some of the hindrances to answered prayer.

a. Psalm 66:18

If I regard wickedness in my heart, The Lord will not hear.

b. James 4:3

You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.

c. 1Peter 3:7

You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.


1. How long did Jesus pray before he selected the twelve apostles per Luke 6:12?

It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God.

2. Describe the intensity of Jesus as He prayed in the garden per Luke 22:44.

And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became drops of blood, falling down upon the ground.

3. What should believers be careful to do when we devote ourselves to prayer per Colossians 4:2?

Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving;


1. Why was David discouraged according to Psalm 13:1-2?

How long, O LORD? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me? How long shall I take counsel in my soul, Having sorrow in my heart all the day? How long will my enemy be exalted over me?

2. What was David’s complaint in Psalm 22:2?

O my God, I cry by day, but You do not answer; And by night, but I have no rest.


1. Read 2Corinthians 12:7-9.

Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

a. What did Paul pray for?

b. How many times did he pray for it?

c. Did he receive what he asked for? Why or why not?

2. Read Mark 14:35-36.

And He went a little beyond them, and fell to the ground and began to pray that if it were possible, the hour might pass Him by. And He was saying, “Abba! Father! All things are possible for You; remove this cup from Me; yet not what I will, but what You will.”

a. What did Jesus ask of the Father concerning His “hour” of suffering?

b. Yet, what was He willing to do?


Compose a simple prayer following the ACTS model above.


2Corinthians 4:16 states

“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.”

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What Can We Learn about Prayer from the Way Jesus Prayed?

Prayer To Know Jesus Better

“I’m praying for you.”

“I’ll pray for that.”

“My prayers are with you.”

Christians throw statements this out all the time, don’t they? The most cynical among us might wonder, “Is he really praying for me?” And yet, whatever the quality of someone’s follow-through, he tells us he’s praying because he believes prayer matters. It’s effective. J.I.

Packer got it precisely right in Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God, “If you are a Christian, you pray; and the recognition of God’s sovereignty is the basis of your prayers.

” Convinced that God is powerful and in control, believers go to him in prayer, entrusting the nuts and bolts of their daily lives into his omnipotent hands.

But do we talk about prayer more than we actually pray? That’s the chink in the armor of our sanctification that I’d you to think about for a moment. I’m convinced a lot of us talk and read about prayer much more than we pray. It shouldn’t be this way.

I don’t want to induce you to pray by making you feel bad for not praying (it wouldn’t work—not for long, anyway). Instead, I’d you to reflect for a few moments on the life of Jesus.

I’m hopeful that his example and ultimately his sacrifice will motivate you to be more faithful in prayer.

How did Jesus pray?

In Luke 6:12 we encounter something extraordinary. Jesus prayed: “In these days he went out to the mountain to pray, and all night he continued in prayer to God.”

It appears that Jesus was praying for wisdom to know whom to select as his twelve apostles. This is a reasonable conclusion. The first thing Jesus does after praying is gather together his disciples and choose the twelve (Luke 6:13-14). Not only that, in Matthew’s account, before settling on his apostles, Jesus exhorted the disciples to pray.

And notice what he told them to pray for: “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Matt. 9:37).

Given that Jesus told his disciples to pray for workers, it seems ly that Jesus was praying for workers, too, specifically, the workers who would be his apostles.

If prayer is simply talking to God, it shouldn’t surprise us that Jesus prayed. In John 11:41 we see Jesus thanking his Father for hearing him. In Mark 14:36 we find Jesus praying for a way the cross. Clearly it was Jesus’ custom to pray. But this raises an interesting question: why did Jesus pray?

Why did Jesus pray?

The answer is found in the fact that Jesus is both God and man. As the eternal Son of God, Jesus prayed his divinity—serving as a display of communion with his Father (John 10:30).

Being one with the Father, there is no reason to be surprised that the Son communicated with the Father. In that sense, Jesus’ prayer life is rooted in his divinity.

But not only that, Jesus prayed his humanity as well—serving as a model for us of what dependence on the Father looks .

This opens a door into some fascinating questions: Did Jesus know which disciples would be his apostles before he prayed to the Father? Did Jesus need to pray in order to make the right decision? Suffice it to say that the implications of the incarnation are too numerous and deep for our small minds to grasp. But this much is clear, Jesus lived a life of trust in and dependence on his Father to lead him—including leading him to the twelve men preordained by God to represent Jesus on earth.

Regardless of why Jesus prayed, there is much to learn from his example. Let's focus on five lessons we learn from Jesus on prayer.

Lessons from the Prayer Life of Jesus

1. Prayer is necessary.

We are never too busy to pray. Most of us, much of the time, feel as if we are too busy to pray. We have to sleep, after all. We have to work. We have to take care of the kids.

We have to have some down time, don’t we? And when all those things we have to do are done, there is hardly any time for prayer! At least that’s what we tell ourselves. And yet, the truth is that we need prayer as surely as we need sleep and food and rest.

Each of us relies on God, and we demonstrate this reliance by praying. Jesus had the weight of the world on his shoulders, and yet he prayed. How much more should we?

2. Prayer demands solitude.

It is striking in Luke 6:12 that Jesus got away from the crowd in order to pray. He sought a place of quiet. There is no command in Scripture to pray in solitude, and yet we should take to heart the model of our Savior.

We should make it a personal discipline to unplug from the world before we speak to the One who made the world. I’m reminded of Susanna Wesley who had no place of escape from her numerous children.

She found solitude in the corner of the kitchen with her apron pulled over her head to allow her just a few moments to think and pray.

3. Prayer will often be strenuous.

On that mountainside Jesus continued to pray all night. He once rebuked his disciples for failing to stay awake and pray (Mark 14:37). Because he is fully man Jesus felt the need to sleep and rest.

Yet he believed it was more important for him to stay alert and pray. What makes us think that our prayer life should be easy? Persistence ought to be the hallmark of every believer’s prayers.

We are to plead with God faithfully, fervently, and passionately (see Luke 18:1-18).

4. Prayer has a purpose.

Jesus had real work to do. Apostles must be chosen. These apostles would go on to preach and write the words the Spirit would use to build the church (Eph. 2:20). Jesus had a church to establish, and so he prayed. When we pray, we ought to know what needs to be accomplished. I the well-worn acronym, A.C.T.S.

We pray to adore the Father because he is worthy of all adoration. We pray to confess our sin because we are to be aware, daily, of our need for forgiveness. We pray to thank God because an attitude of thanksgiving is a mark of every true believer. Finally, we pray supplication, asking God to provide because we know he cares about what we need.

This is what it looks for us to pray with a purpose.

5. Prayer is effective.

Having stayed up all night talking to his heavenly Father, Jesus was ready to pick twelve men to serve him on earth. Jesus prayed, the Father answered, and Jesus chose the twelve. Perhaps it’s not a stretch to say that in Luke 6:12 we see something of divine sovereignty and human responsibility.

Jesus prayed because he knew no decision is outside the will of the Lord. But having prayed, Jesus acted. He stepped out and selected the men he believed best suited to do the work he needed. And so it is with us. We pray, because we know that God is sovereign.

And then we act, trusting that God will guide our steps (see James 5:13-18).                      

More than a Model

In these five ways, Jesus is a tremendous model for us in prayer. But we must be careful not to see Jesus only as our example in prayer. Graeme Goldsworthy warns us that to see Jesus merely as an example may be counterproductive.

Seeing how spectacularly well Jesus prayed may be demoralizing for some of us, reminding us of the many ways we fall short. Though I’m convinced we must hold Jesus out as a model to follow, if he is only a model we will surely fail.

Though prayer is a discipline we must improve on for the Lord, it is also, as Goldsworthy argued in Prayer and the Knowledge of God, “the fruit of what Christ has done for us.”

In short, the path to better prayer is not fundamentally praying because Jesus prayed, but praying because Jesus died and rose again.

It is through this death and resurrection that we find more than an example, we find a Savior who bore the wrath of God that we deserved, took the debt of sin that we accrued, and declared us righteous. That is grace.

And having received such plentiful grace, we pray. Not merely because Jesus prayed, but because Jesus died to give us hearts that long to pray.

So, as you look to the life and ministry of Jesus, by all means be encouraged to pray better.

But do remember that the basis of prayer is not your desire to pray more! If you are a Christian, the basis of prayer is the fact that through Jesus’ atoning death and resurrection you have adopted as a son or daughter into the family of God. This will change your view of prayer. I love how Goldsworthy put it:

“How we view that relationship will determine, in turn, how we come to God in prayer and with what confidence. Prayer will never again be a sentimental excursion or an instinctive hitting of the panic button.

Nor will it be the presumption of an innate right to demand God’s attention. Rather it will be the expression of our entry into God’s heavenly sanctuary, which has been procured for us by our Great High Priest.

We need more than lessons to pray better. We need the gospel. So let us go back to the throne of grace (Heb. 4:14-16; 10:19-23) where we find an inexhaustible source of power to pray.

Aaron Menikoff (PhD, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is Senior Pastor of Mt. Vernon Baptist Church in Atlanta, GA. He blogs at “Free to Serve” and is the author of Politics and Piety (Pickwick).

Photo Credit: Unsplash/Paola Aguilar

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10 Awesome Bible Verses About the Power of Prayer

Prayer To Know Jesus Better

Who is your source of power? This list of awesome power of prayer Bible verses is meant to encourage you today. I pray that you read through these Bible verses and then take them to God in prayer.

Ask God for the wisdom and discernment to teach you how He wants you to pray and for what He wants you to pray for.

For a great Christian song check out the video to the right Shout to the Lord by Darlene Zschech.


Matthew 7:7  “Ask, and it will be given to you seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

Matthew 21:22 And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”

Mark 11:24  Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

John 14:13-14 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it

Pray in Faith

This list of awesome power of prayer Bible verses is meant to encourage you today.

Mark 9:29  And he said to them, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.”

Acts 9:40 But Peter put them all outside, and knelt down and prayed; and turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up.

James 5:14-16 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.

And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another,that you may be healed.

The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

Always & With Thanksgiving

Ephesians 6:18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,

Philippians 4:6-7 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Christian Quotes About Prayer

Prayer is a shield to the soul, a sacrifice to God, and a scourge for Satan. ~ John Bunyan

The fewer the words the better prayer.  ~ Martin Luther

Prayer is an effort of will.  ~ Oswald Chambers

Our prayer and God’s mercy are two buckets in a well; while one ascends, the other descends.  ~ Arthur Hopkins

If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies. If they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees. Let no one go there unwarned and unprayed for.  ~ Charles H. Spurgeon

It is because of the hasty and superficial conversation with God that the sense of sin is so weak and that no motives have power to help you to hate and flee from sin as you should. ~ A.W. Tozer

Prayer is not monologue, but dialogue. Gods voice in response to mine is its most essential part. ~ Andrew Murray

Don’t pray when you feel it. Have an appointment with the Lord and keep it. A man is powerful on his knees. ~ Corrie Ten Boom

Prayer is the acid test of devotion. ~ Samuel Chadwick

Prayer – secret, fervent, believing prayer – lies at the root of all personal godliness.  ~ Williams Carey

My prayer for you today is that you take these Bible verses you just read and do something with them. Too often we just take information in and then move on to the next project or thing. Use these awesome Bible Verses and put them into action by being obedient to what they teach!


The Holy Bible, English Standard Version

“Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”

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