Have you ever wondered what we are supposed to do with the command in 1 Thess. 5:17 to “pray without ceasing”? I am tenacious about taking the truth of God’s Word and applying it to real life, but come on…without ceasing???
I just read a great article dealing with this subject that I wanted to pass along. Here John Piper deals with this verse in an astute and pastoral way.
Click the HERE to see the full article on desiringgod.org
In summary here is what I learned. No, we don’t pray every minute of every hour of every day, and that is ok. While it is impossible to apply this verse physically, the principles behind it are essential for every believer.
- This verse makes it clear that we must have a spirit of dependence on God – even if we are not consciously speaking to Him, we always must have a deep dependence on Him that truly is without ceasing.
- There are other verses that show Paul using similar language as 1 Thess. 5:17. (for example “unceasing” in Rom. 1:9) But it is physically impossible to pray 24/7, so what is his meaning? What is intended is repeated, frequent, intentional prayer. Christians should be making time to pray. Period.
- The final implication is a “never-give-up” attitude toward prayer. Pray without ceasing means we never throw in towel. We never abandon prayer. We understand that this is part of the bedrock of our faith. Communication with the Father should never come to a standstill.
I pray you have a greater understanding of 1 Thess. 5:17 today, and a renewed commitment to “pray without ceasing”.