The Bible says in Galatians 6:2 to ‘carry each other’s burdens and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ.’ Praying for someone else is an effective way to bear another’s burden. It is one of the most powerful blessings you can give another person. However, you might be wondering if it works. In this article, we’ll answer the question, ‘does praying for someone else work?’ On that note, let’s dive in.
So, Does Praying for Someone Else Work?
The answer to your question is yes, praying for someone else does make a difference. The lives of those you are interceding for will become better because of your prayers. It may take time to see the results, but it’ll surely happen.
Prayer works, whether you’re praying for yourself or someone else. James 5:16 tells us, ‘pray for one another that you may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
It’s also worthy of note that praying for someone else also makes a difference in your life because it prevents you from becoming too self-centered. Philippians 2:4 says, ‘Let each of us look out not only for his own interests but also for the interests of others.’
Therefore, instead of becoming entirely consumed with our needs and responsibilities, praying for another person will help you keep the right perspective and always think of other people and their challenges.
What Is It Called When You Pray for Someone Else?
Praying for someone else is referred to as interceding for the person.
Intercessory prayer is an unselfish expression of love that entails praying for the needs of others. The Bible constantly tells us to pray for others. This is because intercessory prayer reflects God’s character of love and mercy.
Since the goal of Christians is to act and think like God does, praying for others helps believers think beyond themselves and builds up their compassion for others.
What Happens When You Pray for Someone?
Many things happen when you choose to pray for someone else. Below are some of them.
1. It Unites Believers
Praying for someone else removes you from your isolation. Although the answer to prayers isn’t always as we expect, it can still change the person’s perception of feeling alone in the situation. We all have struggles, and sharing someone else’s concerns with God in prayer, draws us closer to God and to the person.
2. It Lightens Burdens
Another thing that happens when you pray for someone is lightening their burdens. Intercessory prayer is an effective way of bearing each other’s burdens. It is a powerful gesture to take someone’s pain to God in prayer. You’ve demonstrated your love for them by stepping into their burdens through this act.
3. Prayers Are Answered
Praying for another person might just be the extra touch they need to get their prayer answered. James 5 says that the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. Therefore, taking the step and praying for someone else will go a long way to help them, especially when they don’t have faith.
Benefits of Praying for Others
When we choose to pray for others, there are many benefits to the act. Below, we’ve rounded up some benefits of intercessory prayers.
1. It Glorifies God
When you pray for someone else, it glorifies God and reflects your trust in God. Prayers generally glorify God because it is more than just a conversation. It displays our belief that God can fix everything. It shows that you believe God can solve your problems, and he will do it. This is backed up by John 14:13, which tells us, ‘and whatever you ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be Glorified in the Son.’
2. It Opens Doors for the Gospel
Paul knows that intercessory prayer played a part in the effectiveness of his ministry. Therefore, he constantly asked people to pray that God would open doors for the gospel of Christ. When we pray for someone else, it could draw people closer to God and soften their hearts. It shows unity, and God uses these prayers to bring His kingdom here on earth.
3. God Answers
When we lift our hearts in prayer, it doesn’t just bounce off the ceiling. God hears our prayers for other people, and He answers. Although the reply might not be what we expect or come as quickly as expected, it will surely come. Prayers are powerful, and God answers.
What Does the Bible Say About Praying for Others?
The Bible talks about praying for one another in many verses. Therefore, if you want the answer to the question ‘does praying for someone else work?’ you might find the answer within these verses.
- Ephesians 6:18
- Colossians 1:9
- James 5:16
- 1 Timothy 2:1
- Romans 8:26
- Galatians 6:2:
- Acts 1: 14
- Romans 8:26
- Hebrew 7:25
Why Should We Pray for Others
Now that you know the answer to the question, ‘does praying for someone else work?’ you might wonder why you have to pray for others. There are many reasons believers should intercede for others; below are some.
1. Because Jesus Intercedes for People
A general rule of thumb for Christians is that when Jesus does something, we should always try to emulate his actions. Consistently, the Bible shows us that Jesus is the best model of someone who loved others effortlessly. Most of Christ’s actions are rooted in his love for his people. Therefore, to be like Christ, we must learn to pray for others. You can find a clear example of Jesus praying for others in John 17. Jesus even prayed for Simon in Luke 22:32.
2. It Increases Our Love for Each Other
When we spend time praying for other people, one of the benefits we get to enjoy is the increase in our love for others. Praying for others create unity, and as we pray for others, the very acts build love in our heart for that person. You’re constantly reminded of your love for this person and the struggle they endure.
Bible Stories About Praying for Others
The Bible provides many examples of people praying for others. Therefore, we can learn a lot by studying these examples. Below are some Bible stories about intercessors.
1. Abraham’s Intercession: Abraham consistently interceded for the people of Sodom and Gomorrah for the sake of Lot and his family (Genesis 18:23-33). He started by asking God to spare Sodom if he could find 50 righteous people. Then he humbly asked if God would spare the land for 45, 40, 30, 20, and then 10. God replied by honoring his request. Although Abraham couldn’t find ten righteous people in the land, God fulfilled his desire by protecting Lot and his family.
2. Moses’ Plea: Moses pleaded for mercy for Israel (Exodus 32:9-14 and Numbers 14:11-20). Rather than take God’s offer of making a nation out of his descendant, Moses begged for God’s mercy for the people of Israel.
3. Daniel’s Prayer: Daniel asked for mercy for his people (Daniel 9:3-19). Daniel’s meaningful prayer ended with a plea for God to forgive his people who call God by His name.
4. Jesus Prayed: Even amidst His greatest trial, Jesus continued to pray for his disciples and us (Luke 22:41-42). He was aware that His trial would also be the trial of the disciples, so he prayed for them out of love and deep concern.
5. Peter & Paul: Peter prayed for Dorcas, and God answered his prayers by raising her from the dead (Acts 9:36-41). Paul regularly prayed for the people he served. (Philippians 1:3-11, Romans 1:9-10. 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13).
Prayer makes quite the difference. Therefore, you will experience God’s power when you pray for someone else. God answers the prayer of all His people and can therefore show His power in any situation. Interceding is an opportunity to join God in His work and be transformed in heart. Therefore, choose to pray for someone else today and share their needs with God.