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Physical positions of prayer

Updated on January 2, 2013

Does a certain position in prayer guarantee success?

All through the bible we find different individuals engaging in prayer, and their prayer is accompanied by certain positions as they prayed. the importance of prayer to God and the success of it is not based on a persons position as they pray, but the importance is in the attitude of the heart in prayer. God does not look on the outward appearance the way that men do but he looks on the heart. Kneeling in prayer seems spiritual, but if the heart is not right, the position means nothing to God.

Notice what Jesus says about the Pharisees of his day who were only using their positions for their own benefit. And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are, for they love to pray "standing" in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets that they may be seen of men (Matthew6:5). The motive of their position in prayer was to be seen of men.

They stood in prayer to bring attention to themselves. Now lets look at Mark 11:25 which says and when ye "stand praying" forgive if you have ought against any: Notice there is nothing wrong with the position of prayer (in this case standing in prayer), but it is the attitude of the heart that gets God's attention while the position is for the benefit of men.

The position of prayer is for the benefit of the person

The position of prayer is for the benefit of the person

In the bible people stood and prayed, sat and prayed, knelt down and prayed and even Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane lay prostrate on the ground as he prayed. From a practical perspective people who have physical conditions in their body that prohibits them from certain positions would feel condemned if the key to success was dependent on a certain position in prayer.

This would go against Romans 8:1 which says there is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit. People may condemn themselves because they may feel they must get in a certain position so their prayer will be heard. Notice they "feel" their prayer will not be heard unless their in a certain position, but a person must approach God in faith not a feeling. To God he is looking at the heart not the position.

Certain religions and denominations use certain positions in prayer and this is fine unless someone does not conform to the norm of that group, and they are made to feel uncomfortable. Also the position must not become legalistic in nature and it is simply done because that's the way it has always been done in a persons family, church or organization. Remember Jesus frowned on the Pharisees who loved to pray standing in the chief places to be seen of men.

The position of prayer is for the benefit of the person because they must do what is right for them. Again some people feel that they must use a certain position to get a break through in prayer and this is alright for them as long as they don't push their convictions off on others. Remember the only thing that keeps God from hearing a person is iniquity in the heart (Psalm 66:18) and not a position in prayer.

7 Facts concerning positions in prayer

The bible has many examples of prayer positions

Some sat, stood, lay prostrate, knelt down while praying.

Prayer positions are not for God's benefit, but for the person praying.

God does not look on the outward appearance but on the heart.

Many have physical conditions prohibiting them from certain positions

This would make God a respecter of persons answering the prayers of only those in the right prayer position.

Many use their prayer position to prepare their heart before God

For example some may kneel in prayer which is a sign of humility for the one kneeling while others may sit as a sign of resting in the Lord, etc. This is fine for the person preparing their own heart for prayer, but this must not become legalistic forcing ones convictions on others.

Iniquity in ones heart hinders prayer, (Psalm 66:18) not a position

A person should examine their motive for their prayer position

The Pharisees stood praying in the chief places to be seen of others (Matthew 6:5)

How does your prayer position affect your prayer?

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