I am very thankful for your concern for the unsaved and have a desire to have them come to the Lord Jesus for salvation.  Let’s begin by looking at Romans 10:17, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”  It takes faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for one to be saved.  Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”  Galatians 3:26 says, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.”  Since it takes faith in Christ to be saved, where does faith come from?

As we just read, “faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”  Faith comes from the proclamation of the Gospel.  God’s Word is powerful.  By sharing the Word of God, we allow the Spirit to use the Word to convict a sinner and lead them to believe on the Lord Jesus.  As Paul said, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is THE POWER OF GOD UNTO SALVATION to every one that believeth…”  (Romans 1:16).  

In talking about planting the seed of God’s Word, Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 3:6, “I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.”

  • Paul planted the seed by sharing the Gospel with others.
  • Apollos watered that seed by following up after Paul.  Perhaps he shared the Gospel again, but surely he followed up by watering that seed with prayers for the unsaved to be saved.
  • God gave the increase.  Sharing the Word and praying for the lost is man’s responsibility.  It is God who gives the increase by saving the lost.  We pray for the lost because we realize it takes the mighty Word of God and the mighty hand of God to bring a sinner to salvation!

In praying for the lost, it is good to pray in simplicity and sincerity.  For the ones you are concerned about, I encourage you to reach out to them with the Gospel message.  Remember, one needs to hear God’s Word in order to have faith, so speak to them about their need of salvation.  I don’t want to try to put words in your mouth, but you should simply pray that the Lord would use the Word that you shared with them, convict them of their sins, and bring them to put their faith in the Lord Jesus.

Perhaps you cannot be around someone you are concerned about.  Maybe they live far away, and you can’t be around them on a consistent basis.  You may want to ask the Lord to send someone into their lives that could share the Gospel with them.  Then, you can begin praying that they will be obedient to God’s Word and accept the Lord Jesus as their Savior. 

John 3:17 says, “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”  This shows us that the Lord wants everyone to be saved.  We should pray with that reality, realizing the Lord wants to redeem them from their sins.  In your prayers, continue to pray for that lost soul.  I have seen cases where someone has prayed for a friend for years…and then they come to faith in Christ.  So, pray consistently and constantly until that person is saved. 

Isaiah 55:11 says, “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”  When the Word of God goes forth, the Lord will use that Word.  Prayers prayed with faith can be powerful in the lives of your unsaved relatives and friends. Don’t give up. As you pray for them each day, believe that in God’s love, he will arrange the best means for your loved one to receive the needed truth and come to the Lord Jesus and be saved.  (CC)  (566.4)