Aug. 6, 2022 (9th day of 5th biblical month)
1 Tim.1:18-20 and 2:1-4 Praying for the lost.
This is the only bible passage, that I could find so far, that teaches praying for the salvation of lost individuals.
1:20 add reference to 1 Cor. 5:5 which proves that some people will be saved in a future life. The life of Isa. 65:20, Rev. 20:3, 7-8
Almost, but not exactly:
Romans 10:1 "My prayer to God for them (the Israelites) is for their salvation."
But we need to read the context.
9:3 add reference to Mark 8:36 which shows that Paul was wrong to want to lose his own salvation for other people. We should never allow anyone else to hinder our own salvation.
Romans 9:27 Add reference to 11:26 and Matt. 8:12
10:1 The context shows that Paul prayed for the salvation of the Judeans. This is about praying for a nationality, a race of people, a group, a nation. It's not the same as praying for individual people.
Of course we can pray for our nations and our tribal/native people of our race. We have other biblical examples of that.
11:26 Add reference to 9:27
There are many verses that support teaching and evangelism of the lost. But really only 1 Timothy teaches praying for lost individuals to be saved.
I searched to try to find any bible verse supporting praying for the salvation of the lost. Could not find any other than 1 Timothy.
What you're really asking for, is that God will save that person now/soon.
But there's problems with that:
1. It's already God's will that all people be saved, and so God already has the perfect plan for that person's salvation. What you are asking GOD to do, is to do that He already plans to do, thus is a waste of prayer time. You don't need to ask/tell God what to do. He already planned to do it!
2. God's plan might be for that person to be saved in the 100 years after the 2nd resurrection, not in this current time. Your request for that person to be saved in this life, might be contrary to God's perfect plan for that person. You're rushing GOD!
3. The person that you are praying for makes his/her own decisions. It's not up to God to save him/her. But rather, it's up to that person to change their mind and accept God. Yet that person can't hear your prayers for them. It's not GOD that you need to petition, but rather the person themselves. So actually talking to that person would be more effective than praying for their salvation. Again, it's not a problem with what God needs to do, but rather what the person needs to do. So why are you talking to God about it? He's already been reaching out to that person, and all people.
Verses that people wrongly use to try to verify praying for the salvation of lost individuals:
John 14:13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
Luke 10:25-28 Love your neighbor as yourself.
There's many ways that you can show love toward your neighbor, including wanting them to be saved. But these specific verses don't prove, nor provide, any additional evidence for praying for the salvation of the lost.
2 Peter 3:9 God wants all people saved. Yes. But this says nothing about praying for their salvation.
Matt. 6:9-13 Jesus taught us how to pray. This says nothing about praying for someone else's salvation.
In summary, we might could pray for someone's salvation according to just only one passage of scripture in 1 Timothy. But however, it's more effective to pray for our own interaction with that person, rather than the person themselves. It's not a good idea to base doctrine or action upon just one passage of scripture, especially since we also see Paul's own faults and mistakes. It's not really logical to pray for people's salvation when God already wants to save them and already has such a plan for it. We're not going to change God's mind about that. So it's really a vain prayer.
What's more effective to pray for a lost person:
-Mercy on a person.
-Judgment on a person.
-Blessing/anointing on our witnessing/evangelism.
-Help with the right words to say to someone. The right witnessing/evangelism techniques.
-Our patience/longsuffering with the person.
-That God would consider putting another/additional or replacement person in their path/life for additional witnessing/evangelism to that person.
-That God would consider softening their heart.
I firmly believe that a chat message that I saw this morning confirms today's sermon. I really believe that Jesus knew that she would be sending the message and entered into my mind the topic/subject for today. I had written the sermon notes the night before! Then received the prayer request for the lost today.
We should all pray for the help of Jesus to transform our minds, and way of thinking about death and salvation, away from traditional Babylonian thinking that everyone must be saved in this life and what salvation is. It's not just one prayer and just faith alone. James 2, Mark 16:16 Acts 2:38 John 6:53
After the sermon, brother Jared handed me a paperback bible study that he had found this morning in the house. It's not something that I had laid down this week. It's something that he had felt compelled to notice. The topic of the little book is "Not my will". On the back, it includes the words "How do we pray for the needy world? (My note = the needy world = the lost!) Read Matt. 9:35-38 and be prepared to be God's answer to your own prayer!"
Matt. 9:35-38 refers to asking God to send more laborers (ministers, deacons, pastors, evangelists & other people witnessing) to the world. That relates to the sermon, because it's more effective to pray for our own evangelism and for the ministry, rather than praying for God to save people.
We are the body of Christ on Earth. It's our job to put the truth out there into the world, so that people may be saved, and if they reject it, then the people have made their choice. This is a huge major, powerful confirmation. By the way, I did not write the bible study book that Jared found this morning. And it had been placed there by my wife, and neither my wife or Jared knew what I would be preaching today. Praise Jesus for this huge miracle confirmation!
Just also noticed that the little bible study book also refers to Matt. 6 for "the Lord's model for prayer", which we also had read in the sermon today. And also the book references a bible verse that I had quoted in the sermon but didn't know or say the verse number, which is 1 John 5:14-15 that if we ask anything according to his will, then he will do it!
We need to realize that "his will" includes his plans. It's not his plan to save everyone in this life, but rather has planned 2 resurrections. There's a lot in this little book that powerfully confirms today's sermon and teaching! ELELUJE!