Paul, though presently in jail for preaching the gospel (Col. 4:2-4), continued to see a needy world to whom Jesus’s salvation must be preached and he sought for prayers in order to be able to reach the world for Christ. This is how we should be, praying for everything and the needs of others.
God would like us to pray (talk to Him) concerning everything going on in our lives, but one may ask, why do we need to pray especially when what we want to do is good, neighborly and kind?
Why does doing good require prayers? Because
- We must first realize that it is God who opens doors to doing good (including preaching effective gospel), we cannot force it. Paul understood this (see Rev. 3:7-8)
- There are always adversaries (1 Cor. 16:9) and prayer is the spiritual weapon that can resist them (Eph. 6:12, 13, 18)
- Adversaries (things, people, powers, establishments, laws, etc.) bring anxiety, but prayers bring God’s peace (Phil. 4:6-7)
- Prayer is the vehicle that brings what we need (James 4:2)
- Prayer avails much (James 5:16); it makes things happen
Therefore I encourage you to always engage in continuous fervent prayers if anything good (spiritually, financially, emotionally, etc.) is going to happen for you. When doing good is difficult, pray.
In this particular scripture, Paul requested not only for the effective open doors to preach the gospel, but also to speak the right words (mysteries of Christ) that result into conversion of souls. He believed it was not only his responsibility to preach but also to preach the truth.
As individual Christians we must:
- Live a devoted praying life (vs. 2); &
- Carry a high sense of responsibility to preach the gospel in a truthful way that leads to salvation (vs. 3)
As a church we need to examine ourselves (vs. 3):
- We must cultivate (nurture, foster, promote) a high sense of responsibility to preach the gospel to the dying world?
- We must pray that God will create for us the opportunities to preach the gospel to the unsaved?
- Our pray must be fervent to the point where planting a church once in 3 years would not be a big deal?
- Our prayer must be without ceasing (1 Thess. 5:17)
When effective doors are opened, money, willing people (missionaries), location, souls, miracles, signs, wonders and salvation will be available.
Let us begin to pray more than before, that God will open opportunities for us to continue to preach the gospel. This will please God.
Further, let us pray that when God opens the doors, all the people, strength, grace and things that we need for support will be available (2 Cor. 2:12-13).
Churches and individuals all over the world should rise, no matter how many adversaries surround us, to preach the gospel. This is our calling; we are in big trouble if we do not preach the gospel (1 Cor. 9:16). We must speak to individuals and families. We must plant churches all over. We must reach the world for Christ who is coming soon. Let’s keep going forcefully to reach out to the unsaved, even in our inconveniences and in the face of adversity.
God will help.