New Testament Pastors’ Prayer Requests to their People

by J. Ligon Duncan on December 1, 2013

1 Thessalonians 5:25  

25 Brothers, pray for us.


2 Corinthians 1:11-12

11 You also must help us by prayer, 

        so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. 

                  12 For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, 

                       that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom

                              but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you.


Ephesians 6:19-20

         18 praying at all times in the Spirit,. . . , making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, 

                     that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,

                                        20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, 

                     that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.


Colossians 4:3-4

 3 At the same time, pray also for us, 

        that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, 

               on account of which I am in prison–

           4 that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak.


2 Thessalonians 3:1 

1 Finally, brothers, pray for us, 

       that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you,

           2 and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith.


Romans 15:30-32

30 I appeal to you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, 

          to strive together with me in your prayers to God on my behalf,

               31 that I may be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea, 

               and that my service for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints,

               32 so that by God's will I may come to you with joy and be refreshed in your company.


Hebrews 13:18-19

18 Pray for us, 

       for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, 

             desiring to act honorably in all things.

19 I urge you the more earnestly to do this in order that I may be restored to you the sooner.


From these passages we can glean at least eight things we can pray for ministers:

1. For Gospel fruit in ministry

2. For dependence on the grace of God in ministry (and not earthly wisdom)

3. For boldness and clarity in proclaiming Christ and the Gospel

4. For faith and faithfulness even in suffering for Christ

5. For Gospel opportunities and successes

6. For deliverance from evildoers and persecutors

7. For ministry to be well-received by God’s people

8. For the joy and refreshment of being with God’s people


A Scripture-based Congregational Prayer for Pastors

Most gracious and merciful heavenly Father,

In your Scriptures your ministers ask their brothers and sisters in Christ to pray for them (1 Thessalonians 5:25) and so we do so gladly this morning.

Lord, we want to help them by our prayers, so that many will give thanks to you for the blessings that you grant through the faithful ministry of your pastors, blessings won by the many prayers of your praying people. (2 Corinthians 1:11)

We ask that you would give your servants the testimony of a good conscience, that they have served you in simplicity and godly sincerity, not in earthly wisdom but by the grace of God. Lord, enable them to live a life toward you. (2 Corinthians 1:12)

Grant that when they open their mouths that will speak boldly, proclaim the Gospel and declare it clearly. And if they must bear chains for Jesus, enable them to do so in faith and faithfulness. (Ephesians 6:19-20)

Almighty God, open the door for the word, so that they may clearly and powerfully preach Christ. (Colossians 4:3-4) Make the word of the Lord speed ahead and be honored, and deliver your servants from wicked and evil men, the faithless. (2 Thessalonians 3:1).

We strive with our brothers in Christ, our pastors, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, that they may be delivered from unbelievers who hate the truth and would harm them, and that their service would be found acceptable to all the saints. And that they would be united in joy with their congregations. (Romans 15:30-32)

Finally, Lord, we pray that ministers would have a clear conscience and act honorably in all things and be ready to give an account, and that you might bring to us our new pastor soon. (Hebrews 13:17-19)

In Jesus’ name. Amen.