In this Lord's Word Bible study document, Pray and Prayer, I will show you how we are to pray also, what, where, when, why. I will show you whether it is important to have your head covered or uncovered, for both men and women, when you pray.
All text taken from the version of the King James Bible
Let us begin this Bible study with a prayer, O God, thy heavenly Father, grant me the wisdom and knowledge, so that I may be able to understand this document, in Jesus name. Amen.
I will begin by showing you some things that are important for you to know regarding praying. I will let you read most of I Corinthians, chapter 11, for yourself, I will try to briefly summarize -
The man is NOT to pray or prophesy with his head covered, or he will dishonour his head - (vs.4). But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with [her] head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. - (vs.5)
I Cor.11:13-15 - Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto god uncovered? (14) Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? (15) But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for [her] hair is given her for a covering (or, vail)
So if a woman has long hair, then she does not have to cover her head when she prays or prophesies, because her long hair is a covering or a vail. However, if a man has long hair, it is a shame unto God
We learn in -
I Cor.11:3 - But I (Paul) would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman (if she is married) [is] the man; and the head of Christ [is] God.
The words in brackets above ("if she is married") are mine, but it is the context of the chapter if you read vs. 7-12
I Cor.7:32-34 - But I (Paul) would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: (33) But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife (human spouse). (34) There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: But she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband (human spouse).
Let us look at some of the scripture in I Cor.7, vs. 33 and part of vs. 34 - both he that is married and she that is married careth for the things of the world, how they may please their spouse (of the opposite sex/gender). They are more concerned with pleasing their spouse than they are pleasing the Lord.
The women who chose not to marry, or who have become a widow, (whose spouse has died of natural causes) and do not re-marry, can make Christ as their head. Likewise, men whose spouse has died of natural causes, and they do not re-marry, may also choose to make Christ as their head again, so that you can become holy both in body and in spirit. You can repent of "the things of the world" and devote your life to serving the Lord and not giving into the "works of the flesh," - the ways of the serpent/the devil/Satan/the dragon. - See - The True Vine for "the works of the flesh.
This next scripture tells us what we are to do with our hands when we pray.
I Tim.2:8 - I (Paul) will therefore that men (people) pray every where lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.
We are also told to always pray in private, or in secret, and why. Let us look at -
Matt.6:5-6 - And when thou prayest thou shalt not be as the hypocrites [are:] for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I (Jesus) say unto you, They have their reward. (6) But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
"They have their reward," - means they have already received their reward because they have prayed in public to show others how good they appear to be. So all those who pray in public have already received their reward, God will not likely bestow any further reward to them for this deed.
On the otherhand, if you pray to thy Father in secret, your Father which seeth in secret shall reward the "openly," - means to be manifested, - to be plainly recognised or known to the people; to bring forth into the light, cause to shine, shed light. To help others see and understand the Lord's word.
into thy closet - Matt.6:6
II Kings 4:33 - He (Elisha) went in therefore, and shut the door upon them twain, and prayed unto the LORD.
Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly - Matt.6:6
Jer.17:10 - I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man (person) according to his ways, [and] according to the fruit of his doing - See - Parable of the Fruit--Tree of Life
search the heart, I try the reins - Jer.17:10
Rev.2:23 - And I (the Lord Jesus) will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works. - (The word "churches" is referring to people. - See) - Temples of God--Churches; Four Horses of Revelation; Commandment to Work
Rom.8:27 - And he that searcheth the hearts (minds) knoweth what [is] the mind of the Spirit, because (or, that) he maketh intercession for the saints according to (the will of) God.
Jesus also tells us not to use repetition, in other words, don't keep asking for the same thing over and over again during your praying session, he heard you the first time. Let us look at -
Matt.6:7 But when you pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
use not vain repetitions - Matt.6:7
Eccl.5:2-3 - Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter [any] thing (or, word) before God: for God [is] in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. (3) For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool's voice [is known] by multitude of words.
In this next scripture, I will give you a bit of the story so that you will be able to understand more easily. When Ahab met Elijah, there was a discussion as to who was following the Lord and the commandments, and who was following Baalim, or a false god. And Elijah came unto all the people (of that area), and said, How long halt (have you been) between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people did not say a word - see - I Kings 18:21
Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the LORD; but Baal's prophets are four hundred and fifty men (vs.22) Then Elijah said let them therefore give us two bullocks, and each prepared their bullock - Ahab to Baal and Elijah to the Lord, but neither was to put a fire under the sacrifice, and the God that answered by fire, let him be God, and all the people said well spoken (vs.24)
Now let us look at this next phrase -
for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking - Matt.6:7
I Kings 18:26 - And they (the people) took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed [it,] and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But [there was] no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the alter which was made.
The god of Baal did not answer, or come to this group of people no matter how long they prayed (that is, their much speaking,) or what they did. You can continue reading this chapter for yourself so you will have a better understanding of the above scripture.
In Matt.6:8, Jesus tell us not to be like them - Who?
Matt.6:8 - Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him - Matt.6:8
Ps. 139:1-2 - O LORD thou hast searched me, and known [me.] (2) Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.
Please read all of Ps.139 for yourself.
So thus far, we have learned that we are to pray in secret to our Father and he will reward us openly - Matt.6:3-4 and 6; and when pray we are to lift up holy hands without wrath and doubting - I Tim.2:8. Jesus tells us that we are not to pray like the hypocrites - who love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets so that they may be seen of men, because in so doing, they have their reward, nor are we to pray like the heathens - who use use vain repetition, because they think the more they pray the more likely they shall be heard - Matt.6:5, 7. Our Father knows what we have need of before we even ask him, and the Lord searches our hearts and tries the reins of each of us and he will give to every one according to our works.
Now let me show you when and how often we are to pray. Let us start with the Old Testament first.
Ps.55:16-18 - As for me, I will call upon God; and the LORD shall save me. (17) Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. (18) He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle [that was] against me: for there were many with me.
Evening, and morning, and at noon - Ps.55:17
Dan.6:10 - Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled down upon his knees three times a day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.
Now let us look at the New Testament scriptures to find the times of the day in which the disciples prayed, for what and why will all be explained.
Acts 2:1-2 & 15 - And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they (the disciples) were all with one accord in one place. (2) And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they (the disciples) were sitting. (15) For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is [but] the third hour of the day.
This is a very important change inthe time of the day in which to pray, as will be explained at bit later in this document.
Read the scriptures between Acts 2:2-14 for yourself, I will continue with the times of the day to pray, for what and why you need to pray.
Acts 3:1 - Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, [being] the nineth [hour.]
Acts 10:9 - On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour:
Now we have the times of the day in which to pray daily - the third hour, the sixth hour, and the nineth hour. In the Bible, the periods of day and night are divided equally, beginning at evening, (in Hebrew a 24 hour day begins at sunset, see Gen.1:5 below) and you are to give thanks for every thing, because this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
But we are to -
I Thes.5:17-18 - Pray without ceasing. (18) In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Let us look at the scripture to see how God divided the hours of the day in -
Gen.1:1 and 3-5 - In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (3) And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. (4) And God saw the light, that [it was] good: and God divided the light from the darkness. (5) And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. (The Hebrew day begins in the evening and goes to the following evening - a 24 hr. day)
Now let us look to see what Jesus says regarding the number of hours in a day in -
John 11:9-10 - Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. (10) But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.
So now we can clearly see the day has been divided into two equal porportions of twelves hours and the light hours are called Day and the darkness is called Night. Thus the two equally porportional periods of time are 6:00 p.m. to 6:a.m. and from 6:a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
In the Old Testament, the hours of prayer are: evening, morning and noon, let us go back and review the scripture in Ps. 55:16-17 - As for me, I will call upon God; and the LORD shall save me. (17) Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. - This has been explained earlier in this document
But, Jesus came to teach us a new gospel and so the hours of prayer are also new and have been set to specific times, and the reason why have been shown below.
Again - in the New Testament, the hours of prayer are: the third hour, the sixth hour, and the nineth hour - see - Acts 2:15; 3:1; and 10:9.
So now you have the reason for your established hours of prayer, and man cannot change them, nor can you use the established hours of prayer in the Old Testament, because if you do, then you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour who was crucified for you and me, and who rose on the third day, and if you do not accept these hours of prayer, then your faith is vain and you are yet in your sins. - I Cor.15:17, also see vs. 14.
We are told to, however - Pray without ceasing. (18) In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. - I Thes.5:17-18
There are many things you can pray to God to give thanks, you can pray -
These are just a few examples of the things you could pray to God and give thanks - for you are to pray without ceasing and in every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. - I Thes.5:17-18
The suggestions above were to pray to give thanks. We are told to pray always, let us take a look at the scripture in -
Luke 21:36 - Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. - See - Luke, chapter 21 regarding the things that shall come to pass.
Also read II Thessalonians, chapter one for yourself, pay particular attention to the scripture with the word "worthy".
Here is an assignment for you, do a search in a computer Bible, (King James version), for the word "worthy" read and study the scripture which comes up in Revelation first, and then read the rest of the scripture found for this word in the New Testament, to have a better understanding of what this word means. It is important that you understand what "worthy" (#514) means, what it stands for, and who is worthy now. Of course there is more than one meaning for the word, that is why I have asked you to begin reading the scripture found in Revelation first, before you read the other scripture in the New Testament. You can find a computer Bible on my site if you do not have one, go to my Index page and look for Bible Tools click on it and then locate the appropriate box and do your search.
Now let us look at things the Bible tells us we are to pray for, in -
Ps.122:6 - Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.
I will show you what God means, when we are asked to "pray for the peace of Jerusalem," as this is very important to understand. The Jerusalem that is being referred to is the "new Jerusalem" which cometh down out of heaven from God, it is referring to a new way of living and conducting your life, it is not referring to the country, it is referring to a new way of living and conducting your life. Let us look at the next few scriptures,
Rev.3:12 - Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I (Jesus) will write upon him the name of my god, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. - See - Temples of God--Churches
Rev.21:1-7 and 10 - And I (John) saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea (or, no more evil spirits). (2) And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband (Christ is our head). (3) And I (John) heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle (temple/church) of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. (See - Temples of God--Churches) (4)And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (5) And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (7) And he (the angel) said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. (See - Fountain of Living Waters vs. Cisterns) (7) He (or, she) that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. (10) And he (the angel) carried me (John) away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,
Think in terms of the "spiritual" realm, not the physical world, why? because - God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. - John 4:24
In order to receive the peace of Jerusalem, you must give up the "works of the flesh," and strive for the qualities or characteristics of "the fruit of the Spirit." It is "the works of the flesh" (see list below) that we must overcome. So to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, you ask the Lord that "the works of the flesh" enter no more into your thoughts and actions, and ask the Lord to help you achieve "the fruit of the Spirit."
Example - pray for the peace of Jerusalem asking the Lord that the thoughts and actions of (the works of the flesh) enter no more into your brain choose two, three or four at a time from the list . You may also ask the Lord to help you achieve the good qualities (the fruits of the Spirit). We must also keep the ten commandments.
The following are the lists of "the fruits of the Spirit," found in Gal.5:22-23 - the good characteristics, or qualities, and "the works of the flesh," found in Gal.5:19-21 - the bad characteristics or qualities.
The fruits of the Spirit The works of the fleshlove - non sexual
adultery joy fornication peace uncleanness longsuffering lasciviousness gentleness idolatry goodness witchcraft faith hatred meekness variance temperance emulations wrath strife seditions heresies envyings murder drunkness revellings
This is the "good fruit" This is the "bad fruit," or, good qualities/ or, bad qualities/ characteristics characteristics also called, thorns or briers
Other scripture which list those things for which you will not be able to enter the kingdom of Christ and of God can be found below.
In I Cor.6:9-10, we find that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God, these are: fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, effeminate, abusers of themselves with mandkind, thieves, covetous, drunkards, evilers, extortioners
In Eph.5:3-5, we find fornication, all uncleanness, covetousness, are not to be named among you, if you are to become a saint, neither filthiness, foolish talking, jesting, which are not convenient, for no whoremonger, unclean person, covetous man who is an idolator hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
For more scripture on qualities and characteristics to give up for "the works of the flesh," please see - The True Vine.
I have explained the "spiritual" definitions of the words and/or phrases listed below in various other documents,
Let me continue explaining the "peace of the city,"
Jer.29:7 - And seek the peace of the city whither I (the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel) have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the LORD for it: for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace.
In the above scripture, "the peace of the city," is referring to "new" Jerusalem, and "the God of Israel," is referring to the tribes of Israel, not the city/country of Israel, however, there is nothing wrong with praying for the peace of the city of Jerusalem which is in the country of Israel, but make sure you understand which one you are praying for. "Have caused you to be carried away captives," has two meanings, in the spiritual sense means, we are now under the influence of Satan and following his ways, instead of following the ways of the Lord. It also means, that over the hundreds of years, man has moved from place to place, but you are still under the influence of Satan, no matter where you live. We are to follow the ways of Lord, (the ten commandments and the fruit of the Spirit,) and not Satan's ways, (which are the ways, or the works of the flesh,) we are to pray for the peace of Jerusalem --to seek the peace of the city - the "new city/holy city/new Jerusalem" descending out of heaven from God. - See - Rev.21:1-7 above again.
So, we are to pray for the peace of Jerusalem - we are to seek the peace of the city, Ps.122:6 and Jer.29:7, that is, we are to have supplications, prayers, intercessions and give thanks for all the people, I Tim.2:1, for kings, and [for] all that are in authority (or, eminent place); that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty, I Tim.2:2, and all people do this by lifting up holy hands and pray every where without wrath and doubting, I Tim.2:8, for there is one God and one mediator between God and men, (or, people), the man Christ Jesus, I Tim.2:5, and Jesus gave himself as a ransom (that is, he allowed himself to be sacrified or crucified for our sins) for all, or everybody, I Tim.2:6, and lift up your hands and praying for everybody everwhere, is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, I Tim.2:8 and vs.3.
We are to pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you. You are to love your enemies and bless them that curse you and do good to them that hate you, Matt.5:44, - in other words, ask, may God bless everybody.
Jer.29:7 - And seek the peace of the city whither I the LORD) have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the LORD for it: for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace.
seek the peace of the city - Jer.29:7
I Tim.2:1 - I (Paul) exhort therefore, that, first of all supplications, prayers, intercessions, [and] giving of thanks, be made for all men (people);
and pray unto the LORD for it: (peace of the city) - Jer.29:7
Ezra 6:10 - That they may offer sacrifice of sweet savour (or, [of] rest, - Gen.8:21; Lev.1:9) unto the God of heaven, and pray for the life of the king, and of his sons.
I Tim.2:2-8 - For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. (3) For this [is] good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; (4) Who will have all men (people) to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. (5) For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, (people), the man Christ Jesus; (6) Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified (or, a testimony, I Cor.1:6) in due time. (7) Whereunto I (Paul) am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I, (Paul), speak the truth in Christ, [and] lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity. (8) I will therefore that men (people) pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.
The word "kings" in the above scripture (I Tim.2:2,) is not referring to the leader of a country, but as a leader of your souls.
Don't forget that when Jesus returns, he will be KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS - Rev.19:16
And some of us will be made kings and priests, and we will reign on the earth - Rev.5:10, and we will rule and reign with Jesus Christ if we are found "worthy". - See - Heir and Joint-Heir with Christ
If you did the assignment mentioned earlier in this document, then you should have a better understanding of what this means.
for all that are in authority - I Tim.2:2
Rom.13:1 - Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordain (or, ordered) of God.
be subject unto the higher powers - Rom.13:1
I Cor.7:21-24 - Art thou called [being] a servant? care not for it: but if thou mayest be made free, use [it] rather. (22) For he that is called in the Lord, [being] a servant, is the Lord's freeman: likewise also he that is called, [being] free, is Christ's servant. (23) Ye are bought with a price; be not ye servants of men. (24) Bretheren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.
Every soul is subject unto a higher power - God, some are servants, however, some may be apostles, prophets, or teachers, etc., - see - I Cor.7:21 above; I Cor.12:28; also see - Spiritual Gifts of God and One Christ--Many Members.
Ps.122:6 - Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.
Jesus tells us in -
Matt.5:44 - But I (Jesus) say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.
So we are to pray for the peace of Jerusalem; pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you. You are to love your enemies and bless them that curse you and do good to them that hate you - in otherwords, ask, "may" God to bless everybody, because you cannot demand God to grant your prayers, but pray to God the Father asking, "may," God bless everybody and ending in something like, in Jesus name, or in Christ Jesus, or in the name of Jesus, or one of your choice. Amen.
Knowing that we are not to pray like the hypocrites or the heathens - (Matt.6:5 & 7), Jesus tell us what to say to our Father in -
Matt.6:9-13 - After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. (10) Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as [it is] in heaven. (11) Give us this day our daily bread. (12) And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. (13) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. - See - The Lord's Prayer
In Luke 11:1 - The disciples ask Jesus to teach them to pray and he taught them the Lord's Prayer, see Luke 11:1-4 for yourself.
Jesus gave us a prayer, which covers everything that is important to God the Father, and which should be important to us. So, the day begins at 6:00 a.m., pray three times per day, at the third hour, the sixth hour and the ninth hour, if you cannot think of anything else to say, go into a room, some place that is private, get down on your knees and pray for the peace of Jerusalem, pray for them which despitefully use you and persecute you, ask God to bless them that curse you, ask God to bless everybody and finish with the above prayer, that is - The Lord's Prayer. REMEMBER: God does not want to hear a lot of words which may make you feel better, but only those words, or prayers, which are important to him.
For those who are not able to get down on their knees, because of some disability, the Lord knows of your inability to get on your knees, but you can still pray in private or secret.
Let us continue, these next two verses are very important, because Jesus goes over part of the Lord's Prayer and explains it carefully.
Matt.6:14-15 - For if ye forgive men (people) their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: (15) But if ye forgive not men (people) their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Jesus goes on to tell us, that if we wish to fast, he tells us how to do this in -
Matt.6:16-18 - Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I (Jesus) say unto you, They have their reward. (17) But thou, when thou fast, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; (18) That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.
You can finish reading Matthew, chapter 6 for yourself.
As I stated on my index page, it is important for you to know and understand, that we cannot demand or command God to bless us, or our country, we can only ask - "may, God bless...," and depending on what you are praying for, you may need to include "however, not as I will, but as thy will," because it is up to God to grant what he will, either to you, or to others you pray for.
This document is meant to help you understand your Bible more easily, however, it may not give you all the answers, you will need to study your Bible as well as read other documents, but let no one deceive you, prove all things; hold fast that which is good, because, ultimately, you, have to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. - Phil.2:12
Let us end this Bible study with a prayer - O God thy heavenly Father, please help me to be a better person each day, to follow the commandments, and help me to strive each day to be more in thy presence, help me to overcome, conquer and gain the victory over the works of the flesh and to do the fruits of the Spirit, in Jesus name I ask. Amen.