The Prayer of Believers
All over the United States, Christians are asking themselves why God would allow political leaders to make decisions that do not line up with the morality of the Scriptures.
I wouldn’t have been surprised if the believers with Peter and John were asking themselves the same question. Peter and John had been thrown into prison. Clearly they were doing the will of the Lord. Why not let the gospel have free course and be preached to the joy and edifying of Christ’s holy people?
One answer is in the prayer of the believers. Herod, Pontius Pilate, and the Gentiles all conspired against Jesus, but God turned their plans into his plan of salvation. Kings and rulers gather against the Lord, but it is all in vain. Christians who see immorality sanctioned by the government need not despair. The One enthroned in heaven laughs. He is still in control.
What is happening in the United States is not coming just from political leaders. America is a representative democracy, and, if polls are to be believed, the political leaders are often allowing or encouraging immoral things sanctioned by citizens. What is the appropriate reaction for Christians who witness all these things going on around them?
Another part of the prayer of the believers gives us the answer. We can follow their example and ask for the ability to speak the word of the Lord with great boldness. Sometimes it takes persecution to bring out courage in people. Sometimes it takes opposition for people to sharpen their message and take action.
We see God’s reaction to the prayer of the believers gathered together in worship. We ask for the same blessing, an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and opportunities to speak the word of God boldly.
On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. "Sovereign Lord," they said, "you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David: "'Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One.' 27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus." 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. (Acts 4:23-31)