There it is. In black and white. It clearly says, “pray for all men.” And it’s right there in Paul’s letter to Timothy, his protÃ©gÃ©e. But hold on a second. Are those words actually in Paul’s letter? And do those words mean what you think they mean?
No. And…probably not.
If you own a New King James Bible, you can clearly see the words in bold and larger font. A headline…
Pray for All Men
But wait a second. Those words are an actual headline. And they were added by publishers. Not Paul. Hmm, so what did Paul actually say on the subject? Well, this…
“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
Yeah, you could misconstrue that and believe you’re supposed to pray FOR (meaning not against) all men. But if that’s what Paul meant when he wrote it, then he might have wondered why David wrote, in Psalm 109:8,
“Let his days be few,Â And let another take his office.”
Call me naive, but that sounds like a prayer against men. And David was called a man after God’s own heart. So, I don’t think he was at odds with God when he wrote that.
Yeah, if you examine what Paul wrote to Timothy, a little more closely, you’ll see he’s telling you and me that we pray for all men in a way that helps us have peace and quiet. So, do NOT pray FOR men who absolutely refuse to let us have peaceable, quiet lives.
Pray AGAINST them.
Make intercession AGAINST them. Pray that their “days be few.” And get someone a real man in their office. A real man who WILL help you and me lead quiet and peaceable lives. Then, pray FOR that man to do what is “good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior.”
And pray AGAINST all men who will not do that.
Or be willing to suffer at the hands of fools.
You say youâ€™re feeling empty.
And it doesnâ€™t go away.
You live for your tomorrow and suffer in today.
You need to blow your trumpet,
To tear down all the walls,
And keep your heart wide open to hear God when He calls.
(from Impossible Odds, off the Do Right collection of songs)
And you can get Impossible Odds and 12 more songs when you get the limited edition 25th Anniversary Do Right for Cheryl care package CD. You’ll help a pastor’s wife who lost her husband. The link is below.