How does the Bible instruct us to pray? Just talk to God like you would talk to a friend sitting right next to you. Very often, people draw on the Lord’s prayer as the greatest example of prayer. But if you check out the many many prayerful Bible passages, you will see that they really are just Bible characters being open and honest with God about what’s happening in their lives.
God invites us to have a conversation with him according to Isaiah 1:18. For us to converse with God we have to make reference to what He says. So, praying the Scriptures is a wonderful way to talk with God.
What does it mean to pray the Scriptures
Simply put, it is using truths and lessons learned from the Bible to drive your conversations with God. After all, that’s what prayer is really. Talking to God.
Think about it like this: The Bible is God’s love letter to you. From it, you learn about His will and purpose for your life. So when you go to talk to him, it is good to refer to the things He said. Not that God needs to be reminded. It’s more about helping you to trust His words to you.
What are some scriptures on prayer?
As you are praying the Scriptures, it’s good to remind yourself of some basic prayer principles. You can even use these to “remind” God of what His word says about you coming to him in prayer.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16 – 18)
But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. (Matthew 6:6)
At all times, pray by the power of the Spirit. Pray all kinds of prayers. Be watchful, so that you can pray. Always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. (Ephesians 6:18)
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. (Mark 11:24)
How do you pray Scripture?
You need to do three things before you can actually achieve that:
- Read the Word. You can’t pray it if you don’t know it.
- Interpret the Word. Make sure you understand the Bible verse in its original meaning. Far too often prayers are misguided by Scriptures taken out of context.
- Apply the Word. When you understand what the Scriptures mean you can easily apply it in the right seasons of your life and to the correct situation.
- Pray the Word. Now, you can approach God with a specific goal. Prayers have different goals. You might want to consider what the Scripture is about in order to know how to pray it. If you used a certain Bible study method, you will be prepared during your study to pray in a certain kind of way. But just to mention, you can pray prayers of:
how to turn scripture into prayer
So how can you actually create a prayer out of a Bible verse? Here are a few ways:
Pray it straight from the Bible – the Lord’s Prayer, Psalm 23 and Psalm 51 are all prayers that can be prayed word for word from Scripture.
Personalize the Scriptures – For example using Colossians 2:10 you could pray like this “Lord Jesus, I claim the completeness that is available through you. I pray that I will feel and be so whole that I will know I have all I need to live a full and holy life.”
Sing a Bible verse prayerfully – Praise and worship songs are known to be based on Scripture. If you are gifted with music you can make up your own. But if not, go right ahead and draw on what already exists. For example Psalm 3:3 is the verse behind Brooklyn Tabernacle’s “Thou Oh Lord”. The choir also has wonderful renditions of Psalm 23 and Psalm 34. Check them out.
Pray through topics from the Bible – If you are doing a topical Bible study you can pray around what you are learning. As you study, the Holy Spirit will convict you of what to pray for. This is one way to apply the Word to your heart.
Use a coloring sheet – Sometimes you can get creative with a prayer session by coloring a Bible verse that is a prayer. Feel free to put on some prayerful praise and worship songs while you color. This will be a powerful meditation session.
Scriptures to use when praying
Any Bible verse can be used to pray. You can use any of the methods mentioned earlier. A good place to start when selecting Scriptures to pray with is the prayers of actual Bible characters. Although the Lord’s Prayer (prayed by Jesus) is perhaps the most popularly known Bible prayers, there are so many others.
Powerful prayers in the bible
There are many famous and not so famous prayers in the Bible that are great examples of how you can construct your own prayer.
Maybe the most powerful of prayers in the Bible is the one prayed by Peter when he was sinking
Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:30)
This prayer of petition is one that God will ALWAYS answer because he is always in the business of saving souls.
Here are a few other prayers by other Bible characters that you can use to influence your prayers.
Solomon – A prayer for wisdom
Now, Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours? (1 Kings 3:7-9)
Hezekiah – A prayer for battle
Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Give ear, Lord, and hear; open your eyes, Lord, and see; listen to the words Sennacherib has sent to ridicule the living God. It is true, Lord, that the Assyrian kings have laid waste these nations and their lands. They have thrown their gods into the fire and destroyed them, for they were not gods but only wood and stone, fashioned by human hands. Now, Lord our God, deliver us from his hand, so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone, Lord, are God. (2 Kings 19: 15-19)
Hannah – A prayer of praise
My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. 1 Samuel 2:1-2
David – A prayer of confession
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. (Psalm 51:1-3)
Jabez – A prayer for blessings and protection
Oh that You would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain. (1 Chronicles 4:10)
Samson – A Prayer for strength
Then Samson prayed to the LORD, “Sovereign LORD, remember me. Please, God, strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes. (Judges 16:28)
Nehemiah – A prayer for favor
Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man.” (Nehemiah 4:11)
Asa’s – A prayer for power
Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty. Help us, Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this vast army. Lord, you are our God; do not let mere mortals prevail against you. ( 2 Chronicles 14:11)
Jesus’ – A prayer of thanksgiving
Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me (John 11:41-42)
7 Examples of praying the Scriptures over your life
When you pray the Scriptures back to God, select verses that are fitting for the situation. Internalize and personalize them. Here are some simple examples of praying the Word of God for various areas of your life.
#1 Praying the Scriptures for your career
Now Daniel so distinguished himself among the administrators and the satraps by his exceptional qualities that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. (Daniel 6:3)
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men. (Colossians 3:23)
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. (1 Timothy 4:12)
Prayer: Father in heaven, I thank you that you have called me to serve people in the field of …….. I pray that you will give me the exceptional qualities like you gave to Daniel while he served in Babylon. Allow me to stand out in my work for your glory Lord. Help that as you have given me this opportunity I will honor you by working with integrity, giving it my very very best knowing that I work You and not for those who give me a paycheck. Help that I will be faithful with the work that you have given me to do right now so that those you have allowed to supervise me will see and bless me with bigger opportunities. Help me to be an example to those who I encounter through my work. May they be able to confess that although I am young, I bring value to the work that I do. Thank you for shining through me in my work and thank you for hearing my prayer. In Jesus name, amen.
#2 Praying the Scriptures for your spiritual growth
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. (Colossians 2:6-7)
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers. (Psalm 1:3)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of salvation that you have given to me. Although you have done everything possible to save me, I know you expect me to bear fruit. For that to happen I know I need to be securely connected to you. I pray that you help me to do things that will cause my roots to go deep into you so that my foundation will be solidly intertwined with your heart. Then allow me to grow like a tree planted by a river, bearing fruit for you. Let the fruits of the Holy Spirit be evident in my life as I interact with others. I pray that in each moment, my words, thoughts, and actions will testify of your power in my life. May each day be one in which my heart overflows with gratitude towards you for all that you have done for me. Grant me an opportunity today to contribute to the spiritual growth of someone else. In Jesus name, Amen.
#3 Praying the Scriptures for your spouse and marriage
Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised. (Song of Solomon 8:6-7)
In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered. (1 Peter 3:7)
Prayer: Holy Father, thank you that I get to be a wife. I thank you for the blessing of a life partner. Now Lord, I present my husband to you. I pray that you will hold his heart. Hold him so close to you that he will know how to love unconditionally, especially when I make mistakes and hurt him. I ask that you will fuel the love between us so that it will be like a blazing fire that cannot be quenched by floods of life trials. Grant him the skills and knowledge he needs to understand me so that our relationship can honor you. And when he has honored you in the way he treats me, Lord, please answer his prayers. Give him the desires of his heart. I pray that this marriage will build him up for your earthly glory and your everlasting kingdom. In Jesus name, Amen.
#4 Praying the Scriptures for your finances
The LORD will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The LORD your God will bless you in the land he is giving you. Deuteronomy 28:8
Prayer: Lord, thank you for all the financial blessings you have so far sent my way. Today I am claiming for myself the promise you made to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 28:8. As I work I pray that you will bless me. May my work stand out so that opportunities will come my way and my income will increase. Show me how to work diligently and creatively. Give me wisdom as I plant seeds for my career. Show me exactly what to do so that the right conditions can be created for you to send the blessings to my bank account. Show me how to use financial knowledge to be a good steward of the little you are giving to me right now so that when you bless me with more, I will be a good steward then. I know you are preparing something for me and I receive it in faith. Help me to be prepared for it. In Jesus name, Amen.
#5 Praying the Scriptures for your friends
You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. (Deuteronomy 28:6)
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)
Prayer: Father in heaven, thank you for the beautiful gift of friendship. Thank you that you have allowed me to have good, godly friends. I lift them up to you in prayer today. I pray for your covering when they go out and come in. Protect them from the evil one who seeks to destroy them. Bless them as they go about their daily business and may they be a blessing to others as well. I pray that we will all value our friendship enough to not take each other for granted. May it be that we will be able to rely on each other. May our friendship be so strong that it will be like we’re blood relatives. I pray that we will look to you Jesus, the perfect and ultimate model for friendship. Allow us as friends to be challenged and changed by looking at you. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Amen.
#6 Praying the Scriptures for your family
The LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. (Psalm 121:8)
The LORD will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven. (Deuteronomy 28:7)
And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. (Phillipians 4:19)
Prayer: Lord, thank you for my family. Imperfect though they are, I thank you that I know where I come from and where I belong. Father, you know that the family unit is being attacked by the enemy of love. But I pray that you will be their watchman. Watch over them as they go about their daily lives. I ask that you will protect them from danger. Confuse the plans of the enemy which have been set to destroy them. Remove those who rise up against them in any way. Cause them to run away from my family when they see your power at work in their lives. Bless them and provide for all their needs, both earthly and heavenly. In Jesus name, Amen.
#7 Praying the Scriptures for a baby
For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word. (Luke 1:37-38)
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. (James 1:17)
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the gift of womanhood. You know how important it is to me to have children. I believe your words that no matter what the doctors say about what is happening in my body, there is no situation that is out of your reach. Nothing is impossible for you to do.
If you caused Mary to bear a child without the involvement of man, you can make great things happen in my womb. Your word says you are not a God who changes and that you give good gifts. Grant me oh Lord the gift of motherhood. Prepare me and strengthen me for it. In Jesus name, Amen.
Praying through the Bible is a powerful way to pray
The wonderful thing about praying Scripture is this beautiful promise:
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:11)
When you pray from the Bible, you are talking to God using his words. You can be more certain that your requests align with His will. So you can be even more sure that the answers you’re seeking, will come.