So David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?” And He answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all.” (1 Sam 30.8 NKJV).
God’s command to David when he suffered a severe loss at Ziklag from the Amalekites, is a perfect illustration of persevering prayer. In persevering prayer we “pursue, we overtake and without fail recover all” that the enemy has stolen from us. Christ has recovered all things for us at the cross, yet we still have to fight the fight of faith to retain and appropriate all the benefits of the cross. To pursue, overtake and recover all, does not negate the finished work of Jesus at the cross, rather it complements it.
Satan has stolen many things from us which we need to recover through persevering prayer. For example, Satan is relentless and determined to destroy our nation Nigeria. Now and then, he poaches our peace; from time to time he inflicts pain on us and blocks our way from progressing as a nation. At the personal level, he afflicts us with sickness and diseases. He tries to kill, steal and destroy our destiny, our loved ones and our ministry. He has blinded the eyes of billions of people in the world and turned their hearts against God through false religions and faith. He seduces and ensnares the minds of our youths towards drugs, violence and false lives. He perverts the minds of many to live lewd lives. He destroys the ministry of many ministers of God.
How do we persevere in prayer to recover all? We must “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are” (1 Pet.5.8-9 NLT).
We have to be totally submitted to God. Paul says, “And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” (Rom.12.1-2 NLT).
We must have faith in the finished work of Jesus and believe that he obtained the victory for us. “He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross” (Col.2.14-15 NLT).
We have to be persistent in prayer. Peter says, “The end of the world is coming soon. Therefore, be earnest and disciplined in your prayers” (1 Pet.4.7 NLT).
When David eventually traced the Amalekites to their camp, he “attacked them from twilight until the evening of the next day. Not a man of them escaped, except four hundred young men who rode on camels and fled.” (1Sam.30.17 NKJV). After a fierce battle of about 36 hours, he recovered all that was stolen from his camp at Ziklag. We, too, can like David fight in prayer to recover all that the enemy has stolen from us.
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