Praying in the Spirit
by John Bunyan

Part 1       Part 2    Part 3     Part 4

“We do not know what we ought to pray for, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.” Romans 8:26

“I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind” 1 Corinthians 14:15

Prayer is a command of God, and is to be practiced both in public and in private; yes, such a command brings those that have the spirit of prayer, into great intimacy with God; and the prevailing prayer, will receive great things from God, both for the person that prayed, and for those that are prayed for. Prayer opens the heart of God, and is a means by which the empty soul is filled. By prayer the Christian can open his heart to God, as to a friend, and obtain fresh testimony of God’s friendship to him. My purpose today will be to show you the very heart of prayer, without which, all your lifting up, of hands, eyes, and voices, will be to no avail.

My outline will be as follows:

I. I will show you what true prayer is.

"Prayer is a sincere, sensible, affectionate pouring out of the heart and soul to God, through Christ, with the strength and assistance of the Holy Spirit, for such things as God has promised, or according to the Word, for the good of the church, with submission, in faith, to the will of God. In this description are seven things that we need to consider:... (Read More...)

II. I will show you what it is to pray in the Spirit.
"There is no man nor church in the world that can come to God in prayer, but by the assistance of the Holy Spirit. "For through Christ we have access to the Father by one Spirit" (Ephesians 2:18). Therefore Paul said, "We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will" (Romans 8:26, 27). And because there is in this scripture a complete discovery of the spirit of prayer, and of man's inability to pray without it; therefore I will in a few words comment on it...." (Read More...)

III. I will show what it is to pray with my spirit and with my mind.

The apostle makes a clear distinction between praying with our spirit, and praying with our minds: therefore when he said, "I will pray with my spirit," he also adds, but I will also pray with my mind." This distinction was made because the Corinthians did not realize that it was their duty, when they spoke in tongues, to edify others and not to simply edify themselves. It appears that many of them had extraordinary gifts, one being the ability to speak in different known languages, but they focused on these mighty gifts, edifying themselves, rather than edifying the church...." (Read More...)

IV. I will make application of what we have learned.

"I will now speak a word or two of application, and so conclude with, First, A word of wisdom; Second, A word of encouragement; Third, A word of rebuke...." (Read More...)