1 Timothy 2:1-2
New International Version
2 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
Paul begins with calling for prayer for all people. Regardless of background or position in life. There are people on this earth that may irritate us and even hate us because of our faith in Jesus Christ. But we are not called to respond with hatred, we are called to pray and lift them up.
All of the four that Paul lists: petitions, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving are all aspects of prayer. But the most important thing to see is that Paul is calling us to pray as believers for all people. As followers of Christ, we are the hands and feet of Jesus. We are the ones who have access to the throne of grace with confidence and without fear. We are called to lift up those who don’t and do know Christ unto the Lord. We must never pray from a place of anger and being led by the flesh, but instead to do all things in love and follow the leading of The Holy Spirit.
When we pray for those in authority it will directly impact our lives. Paul says “, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness”. It is truly foolishness not to pray for those in authority. If the body of Christ is not praying for them, no one is. There are leaders whose hearts and lives are given over to corruption and wickedness. But we don’t know that unless we can fully examine the heart. No matter how we may personally feel about a leader, we are still called to pray for them. We must remember that when Paul wrote these words that Nero was emperor of Rome, and it would be Nero who would ultimately put Paul to death.
Today in America we have leaders who when you examine their decisions and lives there is deep corruption. But regardless we must lift them up in prayer. Praying that they would come to salvation. Praying that God would give them wisdom. Praying that the righteousness of God would have its way. The greatest way we as the church can make an impact on the world is through prayer and the proclamation of the gospel. May we be faithful to watch and pray until our Lord returns.