I have recently read how Moses, Daniel, Solomon and Stephen prayed for the sins of their nations and a question appeared to me – can I pray for the forgiveness of the sins of my children, my relatives, my colleagues and friends. If yes, when and what are those situations?
Pray for the forgiveness of the sins of your brothers in faith
Apostle Paul wrote in the end of his first epistle:
If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask and God will for him give life to those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death; I do not say that he should make request for this. All unrighteousness is sin, and there is a sin not leading to death. (1 John 5:16–17)(NASB)
Born again Christians don’t sin as this would be a common state, their way of living. If something happens sometimes, we, other Christians are urged to pray for the brother who has sinned, but this doesn’t mean that he will be forgiven, unless he himself witnesses his sin and repents.
We are encouraged to pray for those who committed a deadly sin
The deadly sin is the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit and I wrote an article in this regard: “What is the sin that leads to death?”. God doesn’t recommend to pray for those who deny the Father and the Son or those who deny Jesus as the Christ.
Pray for those who persecute us
This is how the Lord Jesus Christ teaches us in the famous sermon on the mount:
But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you… (Matthew 5:24)(NASB)
Pray for the salvation of your nation
Apostle Paul, who was a Jew, wrote the following thing in the Epistle to Romans:
Brethren, my heart’s desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation. (Romans 10:1)(NASB)
Make it a habit to pray permanently for the salvation of all people from your nation.
Pray for the salvation of all people
This is how Apostle Paul teaches us, when he wrote:
First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. 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. (1 Timothy 2:1–4)(NASB)
God urges us to pray for the salvation of all people and these prayers will surely contribute to the creation of some circumstances, when all those we pray for will understand the message of the Gospel to be saved. This doesn’t mean that they can be saved only by our prayers, without having faith in the sacrifice of Jesus by themselves, repenting and entering the covenant with Him.
Translated by Felicia Djugostran