Praying the Scriptures

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you needed to pray but didn’t know what to pray?

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you wanted others to pray for you and a situation but there wasn’t time or it seems an inconvenient time to “phone a friend” or reach out to anyone? Do you feel unqualified to pray or don’t know how to pray?

Not to worry, God has got your back.  He has an entire book filled with amazing, powerful, life-giving words that you can pray at any time of the day or night at a moment’s notice. Yes, that’s right – the Bible – God’s Word is filled with amazing insight and answers for any problem.  His Word is filled with powerful words we can pray to help us in our time of need.

Every Scripture has been written by the Holy Spirit, the breath of God. It will empower you by its instruction and correction, giving you the strength to take the right direction and lead you deeper into the path of godliness. Then you will be God’s servant, fully mature and perfectly prepared to fulfill any assignment God gives you.

– 2 Timothy 3:16-17 The Passion Translation

During the Sermon on the Mount, found in Matthew chapters 5 – 7, Jesus was teaching how to live in right relationship with God and what it meant to be a Christ follower.  During this time of teaching, Jesus taught about: anger, loving your enemies, fasting, worry, judging, and how to pray just to name a few. Matthew 6:5-13 is where we see Jesus teaching us how to pray.

And when you pray…” Matthew 6:5 NIV.

Notice, Jesus doesn’t say “IF” you pray, He says when you pray, pray like this.

Matthew 6:9-15 New International Version (NIV) says:

“This, then, is how you should pray:

‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

I also decided to include these same verses from the Passion Translation. Sometimes reading it other versions gives us a different or better understanding.

Matthew 6:9-15 from the The Passion Translation (TPT) says:

“Pray like this:

‘Our Father, dwelling in the heavenly realms,
may the glory of your name
be the center on which our lives turn.
Manifest your kingdom realm,
and cause your every purpose to be fulfilled on earth,
just as it is fulfilled in heaven.
e acknowledge you as our Provider
of all we need each day.
Forgive us the wrongs we have done as we ourselves
release forgiveness to those who have wronged us.
Rescue us every time we face tribulation
and set us free from evil.
For you are the King who rules
with power and glory forever. Amen.’

And when you pray, make sure you forgive the faults of others so that your Father in heaven will also forgive you. 15 But if you withhold forgiveness from others, your Father withholds forgiveness from you.”

Another way to pray the Scriptures is to take a verse or a passage of Scripture and pray it, expressing it back to God.

As part of my daily devotions I often read a chapter from Bob Sorge’s book “Secrets of the Secret Place.” I recently re-read his chapter titled “The Secret of Praying the Scriptures.”

As I was reading this particular chapter, I was reminded that not only can I quote or memorize Scripture to help me deal with the problems in front of me, but I can also pray the Scripture over the situation and come into agreement with God’s powerful life-giving words.

Bob Sorge says:

As we pray God’s words back to Him, the language of His word becomes the language of our daily dialogue with Him.  A powerful transformation begins in your souls when your everyday conversations starts to reflect God-language.” [1]

I don’t know about you, but I would love to have all my conversations and thoughts transformed to reflect God-language.

So how do we go about praying the scriptures?  At first it may take some practice, but like anything, the more you do it the easier it becomes and the better you get at it.  However, let me just say, there is no right or wrong way to pray the scriptures. You just be you and use your words to express to God how you are feeling about what you are reading.

Prayer in the true Biblical sense, is the full spectrum of human expressions to God.” [2]

Prayer includes: praise, thanksgiving, adoration, intercession, worship, supplications, shouts of joy, lifting of hands, bowing, honor, exultation, intimate affection, repentance, surrender, dancing, mourning, contemplation, spiritual warfare, prophesying, etc. [3]

As you pray the Scriptures, begin by choosing a key word(s), or key phrases in the Scriptures that stand out to you.  Now you begin to expound on and develop that word in your prayer.

Here is how praying the Scripture might work for Matthew 6:9:

‘Our Father, dwelling in the heavenly realms,
may the glory of your name
be the center on which our lives turn.’


Oh, God you are indeed our Father, our Heavenly Father.  You are in heaven above and all glory is due your name. You, Father, are glorious indeed! Father, may your name be at the center of everything I say and do.  May the words of my mouth, bring glory to you God, and may Your name be at the center of my life. Your name is an anchor to me and will sustain me.

As you do your daily Bible reading, choose a verse or passage of Scripture and begin to pray it over your day.  If you have a certain issue or a specific problem, then find verses that address what you are going through and pray them over your situation as well.   The Psalms are a great place to start as you begin to pray the scriptures.

Finally, here is another example for how to pray scripture from Psalm 91 :1-2 NIV:

“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’”


God, I thank you that I am safe from my enemies and all the troubles of this world when I am dwelling with you.  God, I want to rest in the shadow of your presence, help me to press into this shelter of comfort and safety and trust You!  God, I choose to trust you! I shout, proclaim, and declare that You are my refuge, my fortified shelter, and my safe fortress. I will not just dwell with you, but I will rest and be at peace when all the chaos of this world swirls around me, because you are the Almighty God Most High and I am yours!

Now it’s your turn to pray the Scriptures over your life and you circumstances.  I know you will see amazing breakthrough and powerful things will occur when you pray His Scripture.  After all, we are speaking His very powerful words of life back to Him.

I can’t wait to hear your testimonies as you begin to apply this practice to your own life!


[1] Secrets of the Secret Place, Bob Sorge, Oasis House © 2001, page 80-81
[2] Secrets of the Secret Place, Bob Sorge, Oasis House © 2001, page 81
[3] Secrets of the Secret Place, Bob Sorge, Oasis House © 2001, page 81


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