Today, Wednesday November 24
“Praying in the Holy Spirit”
Jude 1:20-21 “But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.”
Jude is exhorting his readers to stand and not to be stumbling over the lies and deceitfulness of the apostates, the false teachers. He gives several things to think about and to do if we are to continue to be faithful to our “faith”. We are to remember the Word that was given to us from the Lord! We are also to be growing and building up our lives on that Word, the Holy Spirit. It is also very important that we pray!
The power for building the Christian life comes from prayer: "praying in the Holy Spirit" (Jude 20). The Word of God and prayer go together in spiritual growth. If all we do is read and study the Bible, we will have a great deal of light, but not much power. However, if we concentrate on prayer and ignore the Bible, we may be guilty of zeal without knowledge. We read the Word to grow in faith (Romans 10:17), then we use that faith to ask God for what we need and what His Word tells us we may have.
The Word of God and prayer certainly go together (Acts 6:4). Evangelist Billy Sunday used to give his converts three rules for success in the Christian life. Each day they were to read the Bible and let God talk to them. They were to pray; in other words, they were to talk to God. And they were to witness and talk to others about God. It would be difficult to improve on those rules.
What does it mean to "pray in the Holy Spirit"? First, did you notice the contrast with the false teachers in Jude 1:19? The Holy Spirit was not evident in their lives or prayers. "…having not the Spirit". It means to pray according to the leading of the Spirit. It has well been said, "Prayer is not getting man's will done in heaven—it is getting God's will done on earth." This agrees with 1 John 5:14-15: “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.”
As Christians, we may pray in solitude (Matthew 6:6), but we never pray alone; the Spirit of God joins with us as we pray because He knows the mind of God and can direct us. “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.” (Romans 8:26-27)
The Holy Spirit can give us wisdom and knowledge from the Word: “Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him” (Ephesians 1:15-17).
The Holy Spirit can also help us approach the Father through the access we have in Jesus Christ: “For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father” (Ephesians 2:18). We worship God "in the Spirit" (Philippians 3:3), and the Spirit initiates true prayer and also motivates us to pray, for He is "the Spirit of grace and of supplications" (Zechariah 12:10).
When the believer is yielded to the Spirit, then the Spirit will assist him in his prayer life, and God will answer prayer. Today, is your time in prayer what it should be?