BENEFITS OF CORPORATE PRAYER

WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL

JULY 09, 2024

TOPIC: BENEFITS OF CORPORATE PRAYER

BY T. O. BANSO

So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. ‘Quick, get up!’ he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists” (Acts 12:5-7 New International Version).

Corporate prayer is one of the prayers that believers can pray. Believers should have time to come together in one place and pray on specific issues that concern each of them, their church, or other people they know or don’t know. The prayer could be physical or virtual. Don’t forsake a time for members of your church or other groups you are a member of to pray together.

Corporate prayer has great benefits. It includes the following:

1. Corporate prayer meeting is an avenue for Christian fellowship, which the Bible commands. Hebrews 10:25 says, And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near” (New Living Translation).

Some wonderful things happen in church that don’t happen anywhere else. When believers gather for fellowship, God is present, and they don’t go back the same they came. God encounters people at different times by His Spirit in corporate prayer meetings without previous knowledge that the meetings are for them! Divine encounters are often unpredictable. You will not miss your divine encounter in Jesus’ name.

2. Participating in corporate prayer can be a tonic that strengthens the believers’ personal prayer lives. Proverbs 27:17 says as iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.

Praying with others can help you to pray better.  You are encouraged to continue to pray if they are praying. You could be tired when praying alone. But when praying with others, you will continue till the meeting ends. Participating in corporate prayer helps you to pray better and longer. Those praying get fired up by the prayer of one another.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 says, Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (New International Version).

3. It is an opportunity for new believers to learn how to pray and truly pray. When they attend corporate prayer meetings, they can learn to pray and practise what they have learnt. In Luke 11:1, after Jesus had finished praying in a certain place, one of His disciples asked Him to teach them to pray, just as John taught his disciples. Believers need to learn how to pray.

In the early church, one of the things the new believers devoted themselves to was prayer. On the Day of Pentecost, three thousand souls were saved and baptized. The Bible says, They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer” (Acts 2:42 New International Version). Note the word “prayer.” They devoted themselves to prayer. The early church met daily. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts” (Acts 2:46a New International Version). One of the things they would have done was corporate prayer. Through that, the new believers would have learnt how to pray.

4. Corporate prayer gives powerful prayer support to Christians and others who may be going through crises or troubles and are in a condition where they cannot pray for themselves. Sometimes, they could be too sick or weary to pray for themselves, or they are in a situation where they cannot pray.

There is nothing like the assurance that some people are praying for you when you cannot. May those you depend on for corporate prayer not disappoint you. While Peter was in prison, sleeping between two soldiers, the church was praying for him earnestly. Peter couldn’t pray. So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. ‘Quick, get up!’ he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists” (Acts 12:5-7 New International Version).

The angel led Peter out of the prison, and he was free. Thank God for the faithfulness of the church in praying for Peter. Maybe Herod would have brought him out of the prison and killed him.

5. Biblical corporate prayer encourages unity among believers. Corporate prayer requires that Christians pray with one accord, with one mind, or in unity. “Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts” (Acts 4:24a GOD’S WORD Translation). The New King James Version renders it thus: They raised their voice to God with one accord.” The New American Standard Bible says, “They raised their voices to God with one mind.” If believers are going to pray with one accord, with one mind, or in unity, they need to avoid bickering and division. They must shun bitterness and unforgiveness. Otherwise, these will hinder their prayer. In Jesus’ high priestly prayer, He said, among other things, I have given them the glory that you gave me. I did this so that they are united in the same way we are” (John 17:22 GOD’S WORD Translation). There should be unity among church members so that their corporate prayers will be answered.

1 Peter 3:8a says,And now this word to all of you: You should be like one big happy family” (Living Bible). Unfortunately, this is not always the case. There are divisions among church members and church groups. This ought not to be so. The latter part of 2 Corinthians 13:11 says,Live in harmony and peace. And may the God of love and peace be with you” (Living Bible).

Psalm 133:1-3 says, How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore” (New International Version).

6. The power of the Holy Spirit is released in a greater dimension during corporate prayer. When believers come together to pray, they pray under corporate anointing. Some things that will not happen if only one person is praying can happen if they pray properly. Leviticus 26:8 says,Five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall by the sword before you” (New International Version).

7. Corporate prayer helps believers to be unselfish in prayer but pray for others. The only prayer some people know is praying for themselves. They will never pray for others except in a corporate prayer meeting. During a corporate prayer meeting, as prayer points are raised for others, including church members present at the meeting or not, people in other places whom they may not know, etc., believers demonstrate the love of Christ for others and can imbibe unselfishness in prayer. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2 New International Version). Prayer is one of the ways to carry other people’s burdens or troubles.

1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence” (New King James Version). Corporate prayer for others is a way to show love and concern for them.

Conclusion: It is important to pray alone. But it is also important to join other believers to pray in your church or groups you belong to. Neither is a substitute for the other. Pray alone but also pray with others. Participate in corporate prayer meetings with other believers. God answers prayer.

TAKE ACTION!

If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. Take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.

Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself.  I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.

I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You must join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.

PRAYER POINTS: Holy Spirit, help me to be faithful in joining other believers to pray for those who need our prayer. Strengthen Christians who are tired and weary in praying.

(For over 900 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).

T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947
Email: cedarministryintl@yahoo.com,
cedarministryng@gmail.com
Website: www.cedarministry.org