“And all the people said to Samuel, “Pray for your servants to the LORD your God, that we may not die…And Samuel said to the people…as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by ceasing to pray for you…” – 1 Samuel 12:19, 20, 23
His people needed him now more than ever.
They didn’t need a prophecy.
They didn’t need a religious hero.
They didn’t need a spiffy, cool, charismatic, cleaver talking preacher that could incite chuckles from the crowd.
They needed someone who knew how to get hold of God.
The need at hand was a prophet who knew his power came alone in the closet, not on a platform before the crowds.
Certainly, the people of Israel knew Samuel could hear from God and preach.All over the land he was esteemed by kings and peasants, alike.
His credibility, however, came from the fact that…he prayed.
“Pray for your servants…that we may not die!”
Samuel’s response was classic.
Even more, it was shivering.
He knew the consequences of NOT praying.
And the consequence he feared most was not their death, but sin.
His. Not theirs. Samuel considered that not praying for them would be sinning against the Lord!
Ouch! Perish the thought that they should die. Even more, perish the thought that they should die because he didn’t pray. Heavy isn’t it?
It’s THAT powerful.
And the times we live in are THAT serious.
The one concern of the devil is to keep Christians from praying. He fears nothing from prayerless studies, prayerless work and prayerless religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but he trembles when we pray. – Samuel Chadwick (1860-1932), English Methodist preacher