Was My Prayer Biblical?

Recently I was reviewing my Prayer Journal (yes, I actually keep one) and I was forced to do a double take when I read a certain prayer over and over again. The prayer?

Lord, if you aren’t going to regenerate this filthy rat then please take this persons life and allow this person to be tormented in hell forever NOW!

Have you ever prayed such a prayer?

Apparently I have many, many times over the years and the sad part is these folks are still running around doing ungodly things and bringing disrepute to the Body of Christ. I guess I was just wasting my breath, huh?

I decided to do a little digging and see what God has to say about my prayer as to whether its biblical or just my flesh rearing its ugly head so to speak.

Matthew 5:44

But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,

Luke 6:27

“But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,

Luke 23:34

But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” And they cast lots, dividing up His garments among themselves.

Acts 7:60

Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he fell asleep.

Romans 12:20

On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

That certainly sheds some light on the subject doesn’t it?

We’re supposed to LOVE our enemies. That seems like a resounding them here.

We’re supposed to forgive our enemies. That sounds good as well.

We’re supposed to give food and drink to our enemies but Paul doesn’t mean that literally, or does he?

Was my prayer biblical?

Was my prayer God honoring?

Was my prayer “in the Spirit” or in the flesh?

5 thoughts on “Was My Prayer Biblical?

  1. LOL Phil. Uh Flesh?
    May God help us(me) to be more like our Savior. Maybe when we(I) finally realize we(I) have no “rights” we(I) can crucify our(my) flesh and let the Holy Spirit flow through us(me).

  2. LOL .. interesting prayer indeed !

    At a glance it may seem that the prayer is unbiblical, unGod honoring and in the flesh.

    But I can’t think of a better way to pray for your enemies. Though it means the same thing, there is more to it than simply saying, ‘please God save this dear sinner’. There is power in this prayer. I think this comes from a heart that knows God’s will and power to save as well his hatred for sin. IMO the sincere purpose of the prayer is for the salvation and regeneration of the ‘filthy rat’ rather than his damnation 😉

    Correct me if I’m wrong.

  3. Phil, I have a hard time imagining you praying that prayer. Not alot of examples in the Bible of that type of request being granted (Elisha with his double portion is a favorite of the WOF croud)but none I know of, in the new testament. I have heard some WOF preachers talk about “righteous anger” and recount prayers similiar.
    I heard a story when I was young about a man in the community that had taken an evil turn. The church gathered one evening to pray for him. Their prayer was for God to open his heart and until that happened to protect the community from his actions. I’ll say amen to that one.

  4. Well, I can’t say that prayer hasn’t come to mind on my end too. I have been pondering lately when it is appropriate to “be all things to all people” and when we are to rebuke and turn away from others, and declare them heretics. Not an easy task but maybe because we still do have some flesh rearing it’s ugly head at times. I first heard about impecatory prayer a few months ago, and the Psalms are full of them. I can think of times when injustice prevails and these could be holy and appropriate.

    I remember first hearing how God hated His enemies with a perfect hatred. Like many subjects in the bible, we are to apply all of the Word, but not all at once. Cherry picking is out, and being led by the Spirit is in. I once used the verse “to the froward, I show myself froward”…until I was told that that word meant “perverted”. Here I was thinking it meant to treat others the way they treat you, and not “an eye for an eye”. It helped when I looked up another version besides the King James:

    New Living Translation
    To the pure you show yourself pure, but to the wicked you show yourself hostile.

    Boyd, I pray that same prayer you mentioned for my kids all the time. I ask for judgment with lots of mercy even when they do things I don’t agree with. I know they and others are protected from their own actions, even in their rebellion, because I went before them. Thank God He is patient and longsuffering with all of us. But there comes a time when God allows us to show ourselves hostile towards the wicked. We just have to make sure it’s not our flesh we are obeying.

  5. Phil,
    YOUR PRAYER WAS INTENSELY BIBLICAL!!!! And I find it awesomely refreshing to hear such talk.

    That’s very biblical as long as you don’t descend into bitterness and ongoing hatred. The only thing that may not be biblical about it is the “now” and even that is something David would pray in the heat of battle if I read him right.

    It’s okay to be a man and it’s okay to act like it when talking to God. The only caution is never to be flippant with God. It sounds to me like you were just being honest. IN FACT, Phil, you showed more grace than the psalmist:

    Psalm 69:20-28 20 Reproach has broken my heart, and I am so sick. And I looked for sympathy, but there was none, And for comforters, but I found none. 21 They also gave me gall for my food, And for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink. 22 May their table before them become a snare; And when they are in peace, may it become a trap. 23 May their eyes grow dim so that they cannot see, And make their loins shake continually. 24 Pour out Thine indignation on them, And may Thy burning anger overtake them. 25 May their camp be desolate; May none dwell in their tents. 26 For they have persecuted him whom Thou Thyself hast smitten, And they tell of the pain of those whom Thou hast wounded. 27 Do Thou add iniquity to their iniquity, And may they not come into Thy righteousness. 28 May they be blotted out of the book of life, And may they not be recorded with the righteous.

    Notice that David only asked for the death and condemnation. YOU, on the other hand, were gracious enough to call for that only if repentance wasn’t going to be granted.

    Read this, too:

    Psalm 140:9 – 141:1 9 “As for the head of those who surround me, May the mischief of their lips cover them. 10 “May burning coals fall upon them; May they be cast into the fire, Into deep pits from which they cannot rise. 11 “May a slanderer not be established in the earth; May evil hunt the violent man speedily.” 12 I know that the LORD will maintain the cause of the afflicted, And justice for the poor. 13 Surely the righteous will give thanks to Thy name; The upright will dwell in Thy presence.”

    (Yep, there’s the “now”–“speedily”–well almost “now”)

    Even perjoratives, such as “rat”, are at times justified. They should be rare and should be accurate in what they communicate. We know this from the examples of Paul, John the Baptist, and Jesus–white washed tombs, vipers, dogs, etc.

    SOOOO, Phil, not only was your prayer biblical as long as it was truly about the unrighteous, it was more gracious than some of the prayers of the saints God saw fit to include in Scripture for examples to us.

    In the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob,
    Phil Perkins. PS–don’t allow yourself to be shamed by the limp-wristed spirit of our times.

    PPS–Another way to think of this is to ask if your prayer was according to God’s will? And, yes, it was. If there is no salvation/conversion, then there is only one possible will of God for the unrepentant: eternal hell.

    Your prayer was just fine.

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