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Saturday, October 11, 2014


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The Prayer of Jabez
by Pastor Mark Taylor

And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, ‘Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!’ So God granted him what he requested” (1 Chronicles 4:10, NKJV).

Jabez was not remembered for some outstanding achievement, but a prayer.  He did not win a great battle or erect a great building. He simply prayed a prayer.  He is the only person mentioned in the first nine chapters of I Chronicles because of a prayer that  he prayed.

He prayed that God would bless him. He prayed that God would enlarge his territory, or his borders. He prayed that God’s hand would be upon him. He prayed that God would keep him from evil.

We are encouraged over and over again in God’s Word to ask God for blessings. “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.”  Matthew 7:7-8

Jabez prayed for God to bless him. He sought God’s blessing on his life. He was not worried about being selfish, he wanted God’s best and believed that God wanted to give it to him.

God wants to bless you and reward you with prosperity, good health, and happiness.

“Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant.”  Psalm 35:27

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.” Exodus 20:12

“Happy are the people whose God is the Lord!” Psalm 144:15

If you want to have more so that you can give more, then that is an acceptable prayer. If you want to be able to give more to missions or an outreach program so that people will come to know Christ, then by all means pray for material prosperity. 

If you want wisdom so that you can help other people then pray for wisdom, for the Bible says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5).  If you want to serve others with more talents and resources, then pray for those things in order that your life may be a blessing. 

Blessing means responsibility. Serving God by serving people takes time. If God gives me more, I have to do more.

“Enlarge my territory” This is taking the limitations off God in your life!

This is saying God, “I am not going to limit You in what you can do through me.” Remember, it is us who limits the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives The word for “enlarge” also means – to bring in abundance, to increase, to bring up, to multiply, to make greater, to extend the dimensions…”  Many people never have a purpose larger than themselves.  Jabez prayed that God would enlarge his borders.  A leader is a servant of other people. Jabez wanted to be used by God more than anything else.  

Do you want to be blessed by God?  Be a blessing Then pray for God to enlarge your life and your sphere of influence. Ask him for something so big that you cannot possibly do it by yourself. Ask him to enlarge your territory. Surely there is more to life than trying to make yourself happy.   God wants you to see beyond the circumstances. He wants to enlarge your life if you will join Hm by praying and believing for His blessing. 

The third thing to consider is: Jabez prayed for God’s hand to be upon him. Jabez knew that what he was praying for was bigger than what he could accomplish himself. He was praying for something so big that only the hand of God on his life could accomplish it.  Begin to pray for the hand of God to be upon your life so that you can accomplish something great for Him. Hopefully, it will be something so great that when it comes to pass, you and everyone else will have to say, “This had to be the hand of God, because there is no way I could have done this by myself!” 

But the final part of Jabez’s prayer is the most important. We need to consider the fourth part of his prayer: Jabez prayed that God would keep him from evil.  He wanted his life to be a blessing. He wanted to be protected from the harm of evil, but he also wanted to be kept from sinning, because he knew that sin causes pain. It brings pain into the world. It brings pain into the life of the one who commits it, and it brings pain into the lives of those whom the sin was committed against. 

Jabez called on the One who could, would and wanted to make the difference in his life. His prayer let loose God’s will, power and blessing in his life. It can do this in your life also.  Are you willing to be like Jabez and do the "extra" to bring about the extraordinary work of God in your life? It all starts with a prayer.