Bible Cartoon: Ephesians 06 - Armour of God - Pray in the Spirit (Yellow)

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Bible Book: Ephesians
Bible Book Code: 4900601801
Scene no: 7 of 7

Bible Reference & Cartoon Description

Ephesians 6:18 (NLT)
Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.



A single source of light comes from above & to the right.


This is the seventh & last of 7 “scenes” depicting each of the pieces of the armour mentioned by the apostle Paul. Putting on the whole armour of God protects us in the battles of life & faith.

I used a photograph of myself in a Djallaba for this illustration, in order to get the clothing folds & creases right. A Djallaba is a traditional long, loose-fitting outer robe worn by the Berber people of North Africa. I bought it when I was in Morocco some years ago.
The wall & gate was from a photo I liked on the internet.
Note: the idea behind the radiating heavenly glow coming through the archway is to illustrate the presence of God, & the two-way interaction between God & the man, through the vehicle of prayer.

I decided early on in the design process to include a white cross on each piece of the armour, which is my way of signifying that this is not merely metal armour, but is spiritual, God-given armour, empowered by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.

Pray in the Spirit: what is it & what’s it for?
To get a broader sense of what the phrase “pray in the Spirit” means, lets look at several versions of the Bible:

New Living Translation
Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.

Amplified Bible
Pray at all times (on every occasion, in every season) in the Spirit, with all [manner of] prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God’s consecrated people).

New International Version
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

New King James Version
praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

in terms of arms & armour, it would seem that the previous 6 illustrations represent the whole armour of God, but it seems to me that prayer is a vital part of the armour as well, which is why I have included it in the series. In the New International Version of the Bible verse 18 begins with “And Pray in the Spirit…” giving the sense that Paul included prayer himself as part of the armour.

Application: why Pray in the Spirit?
6:18. The manner in which a soldier takes up these last two pieces of armor is suggested by two Greek participles: “praying” and “being alert.” When the enemy attacks—and on all occasions—Christians are to pray continually in the Spirit (i.e., in the power and sphere of the Spirit; cf. Jude 20). “With all kinds of prayers and requests”, suggests the thoroughness and intensity of their praying. And like reliable soldiers, they are to be keeping alert, literally, “in all persistence” (en pasē proskarterēsei; the noun is used only here in the NT). Their requests are to be for all the saints because of Satan’s spiritual warfare against Christ and the church. In the Greek “all” occurs four times in this verse; three are translated in the niv and the fourth is rendered as always (lit., “in all times” or “every time”).
(Source: The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures by Dallas Seminary Faculty.)

‘Ephesians 6:18, although not naming another “weapon” in the believer’s armor, does continue the thought of 6:17. As we take the sword of the Spirit, God’s word, we must also pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Praying in the Spirit means that the Spirit helps us when we pray (Romans 8:26); the Spirit prays on our behalf (Romans 8:27); the Spirit makes God accessible (Ephesians 2:18); the Spirit gives us confidence when we pray (Romans 8:15-16; Galatians 4:6). He inspires and guides us when we pray. He helps us communicate with God and also brings God’s response to us.
Paul was not calling prayer a weapon; instead, he was giving the how-to’s for taking up the armor described in the previous verses. We must not underestimate Satan’s forces. He will strike in different ways at different people; thus, we need to pray “all kinds” of prayers, allowing for all kinds of requests. Satan will attack at various times, but he will always be attacking someone. Satan will attack when we least expect it, so we need to stay alert to prayer needs when they arise. Satan will rarely let up if he thinks he can win the battle, so believers must be persistent in praying, no matter how long it takes. No believer is exempt from being Satan’s target—Satan demands battle against his enemies (believers). Thus all Christians everywhere need our prayer support.

How can anyone pray at all times? Make quick, brief prayers your habitual response to every situation you meet throughout the day. Order your life around God’s desires and teachings so that your very life becomes a prayer. You can make prayer your life and your life a prayer while living in a world that needs God’s powerful influence.’
(Source: Life Application New Testament Commentary.)

Paul’s entreats his readers to, “Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion”. It is always appropriate to pray then! Paul gives us a cautionary statement, “Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers”, or “keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance”. I suspect that is because, carrying the military metaphor on again, our enemy (the Devil) doesn’t want us to succeed! He will object to any & all attempts by Christians to enforce the will of God & the eternal victory Jesus has achieved against him.

The Devil would like to see Christians fall away; to see congregations crumble into apathy & dissolve into dissension & dis-unity. He is always on the prowl, seeking to destroy. I think this is why we are to remain alert & keep on praying for all the saints (ie all Christians.)

Similarly, the Devil will not be happy if we take the Great Commission [2] mandate seriously & seek to extend the Kingdom of God by telling the lost (unbelievers) about the wonderful Gospel of Jesus the Christ. We can expect fierce spiritual opposition to that advancement of the kingdom. The battle is for the minds of those people who are not yet Christians. Although we will be opposed, we must always remember that not only is God INFINITELY more powerful than Satan, but that He has provided us with the full & complete Armour of God. When we cloth ourselves in that armour & we fearlessly proclaim the Gospel of Peace to the people we meet, Satan will be powerless to stop us.

Bible References
1 Peter 5:8-9 (AMP)
8 Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour. 9 Withstand him; be firm in faith [against his onset—rooted, established, strong, immovable, and determined], knowing that the same (identical) sufferings are appointed to your brotherhood (the whole body of Christians) throughout the world.

Matthew 28:18-20 (NLT)
18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”