A Pray in the Spirit
1. In tongues
The Greek phrase translated “in the Spirit,” in Ephesians 6:18 can also be translated as “with the Spirit,” or “by the Spirit.” “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men, but to God. Indeed no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his Spirit. He who speaks in a tongue edifies (lit. “builds up”) himself.” (1 Cor. 14”2,4a) “But you, dear friends, build yourselves up (edify yourselves) … and pray in the Holy Spirit.” (Jude 20)
2. With the Spirit’s Help
It is obvious that we are not being told to pray exclusively in tongues, although that is definitely part of praying in the spirit and spiritual warfare. Paul himself did not pray only in tongues, but in a known language as well. “I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that …god….may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened.” (Eph. 1:16-18a) “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We (sometimes) do not know what we out to pray, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.” (Romans 8:26) When the Spirit helps us to pray, it may be in tongues, in English, or simply by groaning or even crying out to God. The important thing is that it’s not just you praying for what you want, but the Spirit is interceding “in accordance with God’s will.” (Romans 8:27)
B. Praying For All the Saints
“Our struggle is not against flesh and blood.” (Eph. 6:12) It is not an individual struggle. Every member of the body of Christ is in a battle against the kingdom of darkness. “I want you to know how much I am struggling for you.” (Col. 2:1) The struggle being talked about here is intercessory prayer, which Paul is doing “for all the saints.” (Eph. 6:18) The reason for this struggle is that Christians are continually being attacked by evil spiritual forces and intercessory prayer is necessary to maintain the victory.
C. Praying through
“At that time, I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month…I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of the finest gold around his waist. He said…’Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding…your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the Prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days.” (Daniel 10) It was necessary for Daniel to keep on struggling in prayer because of what was happening in the spiritual realm, even though God had heard his prayer and already answered it.