How to Pray for Unbelievers
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).
It’s the will of God that every person be born again. Sometimes I hear people pray, Lord save so and so. The truth is that the person they are praying for is already potentially saved. Jesus has gone to the cross and been raised from the dead. He is now seated at God’s right hand as their representative. So from heaven’s viewpoint, all has been accomplished to secure salvation for every human being.
Now it’s up to each individual to personally repent of sin, open their will to God, and confess Jesus Christ as their Savior from their personal sin. Instead of praying the generic prayer Lord save so and so, here’s a more specific and results producing way to pray. There are three specific areas to cover.
First, ask the Lord to draw the person to Himself, creating within them a desire for Him. This is based on John 6:44 where Jesus said that no man can come to Him unless the Father Himself draws Him. Any desire we have for God comes from God. This is the grace that precedes our salvation. The human heart is wicked and depraved and only the Holy Spirit can produce within us a desire for God.
Secondly, command Satan to remove the blinders from their minds. 2 Corinthians 4:4 reveals that the god of this world blinds the minds of unbelievers. That is, he clouds their thinking and keeps them from seeing their true spiritual condition. The gospel is hidden from their understanding. According to this verse, we have the authority to tell Satan to remove the blinders. Then the person will be open to see their need, and to understand the gospel when they hear it.
Lastly, ask the Lord for laborers to cross the person’s path every day. In Matthew 9:37-38, Jesus tells us to pray that the Father, the Lord of the harvest, would send laborers into the harvest field. Laborers can come from a variety of sources. Laborers can be bumper stickers, billboards, license plates, periodicals in a waiting room, radio broadcasts, TV programs, overheard conversations, or people who walk in wisdom that share the gospel with them personally.
Pray these three things every day for the person you want to see born again. Ask the Lord to create a desire in them for Himself, drawing them away from the influence of sin in the world. Command Satan to remove the blinders from their minds, and then remind him every day that his power over this person is broken. And then ask the Father every day to send gospel laborers across their path.
Conviction produces friction within! Don’t be surprised if the person becomes unsettled and irritable. That may appear for a while to get worse! Don’t stop praying. It a telltale sign that the Lord of the harvest is at work!