Position Yourself for Prayer - Part 1 - Daily Devotional
Communication with God does not require a certain physical position, but your posture does give an indication of our hearts. Depending on the type of prayer, your position may be different. Today I’m going to go over different positions of prayer and when they were used on the bible. This will be the first part of a two part series.
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Episode Notes & Bible Verses
Lying Prostrate Before God
- It is an acknowledgement of our total dependence on God.
When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless. Then I will make my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.” Abram fell facedown, and God said to him, “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. – Genesis 17:1-5 NIV
God reconfirmed his promise to Abraham and at this time Abraham was 99 years old. Abraham prostrated himself before God because he was in awe of God and for this promise to come to pass in Abraham’s life it would be completely and totally Gods doing.
- It is recognition of the extreme need for the Lord.
While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged him, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” – Luke 5:12 NIV
This man had leprosy and was feared because there was no known cure for it. People with leprosy were treated as outcast. There was no cure for the disease, which gradually left a person disfigured through loss of fingers, toes and eventually limbs. For this man he was in extreme need of a touch from the Lord so when his opportunity came for Jesus to heal him, he threw him self prostrate before him in his extreme need.
- It is a right response to an impossible situation.
Now there was no water for the community, and the people gathered in opposition to Moses and Aaron. They quarreled with Moses and said, “If only we had died when our brothers fell dead before the Lord! Why did you bring the Lord’s community into this wilderness, that we and our livestock should die here? Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to this terrible place? It has no grain or figs, grapevines or pomegranates. And there is no water to drink!” Moses and Aaron went from the assembly to the entrance to the tent of meeting and fell facedown, and the glory of the Lord appeared to them. – Numbers 20:2-6 NIV
At this time the Israelites were wondering in the desert got 37 years and not having any water was a serious crisis for so many people. Roughly a person can survive without water for about 3 days. So after 37 years, and almost a generation of people dying in the wilderness already, the people thought that this was going to be the way they were going to die. In this situation the leaders of Israel were faced impossible situation and knew that only God could deliver them. They fell on their faces before God and sought His help.
Kneeling Before God
- Kneeling Acknowledges the Lordship of Jesus
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. – Philippians 2:9-11 NIV
Kneeling before the Lord is a symbol of the heart attitude we should have to make such a petition. It acknowledges the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Kneeling before God provides a visual image of submission to His authority.
- It is a sign of earnest appeal
And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.” The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.” So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’ ” – 1 Kings 18:41-44 NIV
Elijah knelt in earnest prayer when he asked the Lord to send rain to end Israel’s drought.
- It is a sign of personal humility
Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. – Psalms 95:6 NIV
In this invitation to worship God, the psalmist humbled himself before the Lord and encouraged others to do the same
Bowing Down Before the Lord
One who bows before God conveys an attitude of honor, gratitude, and faith, acknowledging that all things come from His hand.
- It is a sign of reverence
But I, by your great love, can come into your house; in reverence I bow down toward your holy temple. – Psalms 5:7 NIV
In some cultures, one who wants to express reverence and respect for another will bow before him. The deeper the bow, the greater the respect he shows.
- It is an expression of worship
Jehoshaphat bowed down with his face to the ground, and all the people of Judah and Jerusalem fell down in worship before the Lord. – 2 Chronicles 20:18 NIV
The Moabites Ammonites and Menuites came to fight against Jehoshaphat. Ultimately, Jehoshaphat and the people would win the battle because they were willing to bow down and worship God.
Standing Before the Lord
To stand before a ruler indicates that you have a legal right to be there. It is only through the righteousness of Jesus Christ that we are able to approach God as His children:
- It represents our position in Christ’s righteousness.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. – Romans 5:1-2 NIV
Peace with God means that we have been reconciled with Him. This peace is only possible because Jesus paid the price for our sins.
- It symbolizes our preparation for battle.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. – Ephesians 6:12-13 NIV
These verses are often related to spiritual warfare. It pictures a soldier ready for battle. The prayer position of standing demonstrates a heart that is ready for battle and to fight on the Lords behalf. Standing during prayer is an outward demonstration on the inward position of your heart being ready to fight for the Lord.