Prayer With a Cause
In the Apostle Paul’s epistle to the Colossians, he writes to tell them that he “gives thanks to God, and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, PRAYING always for you” (Colossians 1:3). Praying, yes, and his prayer was with a cause: “For this CAUSE we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you” (Colossians 1:9). The preceding context speaks of the cause for the prayer; it was in direct reference to their genuine born-again relationship with the Lord, evidenced in their loving, spiritual fellowship with their brothers and sisters in Christ: “Your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all saints, for the hope (the confident expectancy of their future home) which is laid up for you in heaven” (vs. 4-5). His prayer for them was based on the Scriptural fact of their reception of “the word of the truth of the gospel” - they were genuinely, truly saved, changed into a new person by the LIVING SPIRIT OF GOD. With that recognition, Paul was then devoting himself in speaking to God on their behalf, because he knew of their testimony: their lives were “bringing forth fruit … since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth” (v. 6). So, Paul had a cause for his prayer: namely, their faith was genuine, as evidenced in their “love in the Spirit” (v. 8). So, with their love IN the Spirit, they now possessed Spirit-filled power for maturing IN the Spirit, and loving that which is OF the Spirit (vs. 9-14). That is why Paul prayed for them with a cause: “For this cause we also … do not cease to pray for you” (v. 9). With the cause for the prayer (their genuine faith, vs. 2-8), Paul now shares with them his prayer with a cause, for them to grow in their faith (vs. 9-14).
“For this cause (context: because of their LOVE in the Spirit) we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you” (v. 9). That cause of their LOVE in the Spirit extended to Paul’s prayer with a cause: for them to have a MIND of the Spirit: “That ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding” (v. 9). He then prayed that God would bring the cause for them to WALK in the Spirit: “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (v.10). Yes, with the MIND of God, we can then progress to the WALK with God. But how is this possible? Well, more prayer is given; it was a request for them to possess the POWER of the Spirit: “Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness” (v. 11). Yes, prayer is made to the Lord for HIM to bring the answers. Why? Prayer was with a cause, and it was God’s cause indeed. God’s cause of HIS redemptive work was revealed to them and in them; they possessed a bonified true salvation, fruitfulness of faith, love for God, love for his people, and their love IN the Spirit; all to bring about Paul’s cause for prayer to the Lord, for each to be answered. Prayers answered? Of course, be-CAUSE the Colossian believers were candidates of being receptive of and to the things of the Spirit, with that underlying cause - their Spirit-filled, purposeful lives. You see, he wasn’t praying for and could not have prayers answered regarding unresponsive “nominal, dead Christians.” They were different; they were “born of the Spirit Christians” and alive in Christ believers with hungry hearts for the things of God and his Word. Paul heard of their testimony; it was “your love IN the Spirit” (v. 8). Spiritual believers who have love IN the Spirit will grow in things which are found IN the Spirit of God, and that which HE loves. For this cause prayer is made; so, then may we all be candidates for prayer with a cause, God’s cause involving HIS SPIRIT’S work within us. Question: What would Paul be writing to the believers at the church of your chosen fellowship? Would it be a church with a cause, a Biblical cause for prayer (Colossians chapter one), knowing that the Lord would give answer in hearts receptive? Would Christ’s cause of HIS church modeled in Colossians chapter one be our cause (individually) for being a church? Is it HIS CHURCH, or our church? OH, may the Lord’s cause come to you as godly prayers are made to our Lord. May HE make it HIS CHURCH, giving you the “love IN the Spirit” - love found in him and given by him!