STRIVING IN PRAYER
Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers… (Colossians 4:12).
The phrase translated “laboring fervently” in the scripture above is “agōnizomai” (Greek), and it doesn’t translate into mere labouring; it means to strive. In fact, the first synonym is “to fight”; it also means to struggle or contend with an adversary. The same word is what we have in 1 Timothy 6:12 which says, “Fight the good fight….”
Now, Paul, by the Spirit, tells the Christians in the church in Colossae that Epaphras was always “fighting” for them in prayers. He was contending with satanic forces in their behalf. That’s part of what you do in interceding for others. 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 says, “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should
shine unto them.” Here, we see why we must strive in prayer for the souls of men.
Perhaps you have family members and loved ones, friends, colleagues, and neighbours you’ve been witnessing to and they’ve refused to heed the call of salvation; God’s Word shows what the real problem is: Satan—the “god of this world”—has blinded their minds! For such people, you must contend for their souls in prayer; you “agonize” in intercession for them. You declare, “In the Name of the Lord Jesus, you evil spirit of darkness that has blinded their minds, I break your influence over them!”
But you see, you don’t stop there; you continue in intercession; it’s called prevailing in prayer. You travail in prayer over their minds, that their hearts be opened to the Lord, and be guided to the Word of God, in the Name of Jesus. You pray that the light of the glorious Gospel shines in their hearts, and they embrace the grace of God for their salvation; the presence of God mantles their hearts and God’s Word prevails in their lives. Hallelujah!
Pray like this for your friends or family members who aren’t yet born again, and you’ll be amazed at the result. Praise God!
Blessed Lord, I pray that the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ would shine in the hearts of many today who are yet to receive salvation, turning them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, in the Name of the Lord Jesus. Amen.
Colossians 4:12 GNB; 1 Timothy 2:1-4; Galatians 4:19 TPT
1-YEAR BIBLE READING PLAN: John 20:19-31 & 1 Chronicles 23-25
2-YEAR BIBLE READING PLAN: Mark 15:25-32 & Deuteronomy 5