If you’re in the Kingdom, you’re in a battle.
That battle can be initiated by people or circumstances. It can attack your reputation, your finances, your health or your family.
But because of your position in the kingdom, there’s always a tie to the spiritual world. Paul says, “For our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Eph. 6:12).
If that’s the case, then maybe the best place to start in resolving whatever is coming against you is in a warfare prayer.
The Believer’s Warfare Prayer
In the early days of New Song, I felt spiritual pressure constantly and some sort of threat to the church’s existence daily.
Someone handed a printed prayer to me by seminary professor Victor Matthews called “The Believer’s Warfare Prayer.” I never met Dr. Matthews, but his prayer has contributed significantly to my ministry.
I prayed his prayer out loud, verbatim, that first day, and the spiritual pressure I was feeling abated. The pressure returned the next day, so I prayed it out loud again. I found that every time I prayed the prayer, I felt relief. It was like the Lord and I were pushing back Satan, claiming territory and victory.
I began to pray the prayer daily. This went on for years.
As New Song grew and our members matured, more and more people were lifting me up in prayer, so I began to experience their prayer shield. I prayed my warfare prayer less often. I didn’t seem to need it as much.
Then, a few years ago, New Song appeared on the Outreach 100 Fastest Growing Churches list. That seemed to paint a target on my back. The church and I have experienced spiritual attack over the last two decades, but never like this.
Proverbs 15:22 tells me that plans fail for lack of counsel, so one day I went to see a counselor. You know what she told me?
“You should remember that these attacks you’re experiencing have a spiritual basis to them.”
Good call! I dug out my believer’s warfare prayer and began praying it again. It’s helping. A lot.
Every Christian leader I know feels attacked, discouraged, disparaged or hopeless from time to time. Leaders are proactive, so we start by addressing the symptom of our problem, but it makes sense to go deeper and attack the root.
The believer’s warfare prayer is a sound spiritual exercise. God can hear our innermost thoughts, but Satan can’t. I find that praying it out loud has a two-fold benefit: God hears and respond, and demons hear and flee.
My encouragement to every believer who feels attacked is to pray this daily until they find themselves back in a smooth place and then to pray it weekly or monthly thereafter. The prayer takes six to eight minutes to pray out loud, and it’s well worth it.
I pray the prayer exactly as written. When I stumble over a sentence, I reread it accurately. Words matter, and Victor Matthews was a genius. His prayer is an excellently-crafted, well-rounded, biblically-based prayer that contains crisp theology.