Updated: Jul 19, 2019
James 5: 16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. 17 Elias (Elijah) was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
“You must pray with all your might. That does not mean saying your prayers, or sitting gazing about in church or chapel with eyes wide open while someone else says them for you. It means fervent, effectual, untiring wrestling with God. This kind of prayer be sure the devil and the world and your own indolent, unbelieving nature will oppose. They will pour water on this flame.” Founder of Salvation Army
God wants to spend time with you. As a believer, you have access to the throne of God. Think on this for a moment. In the Old Testemant Covenant, there was a veil between the inner court and the Holy of Holies where God dwelt (of course God is everywhere, but at that point in history God wanted the people to know that His presence was with them in the temple and the tabernacle) The only one who may enter was the High Priest and only once per year on Yom Kippur. It was so holy of ground that if the priest had any unconfessed sin, they would die when they entered His presence. What happened to that? Well when Jesus dies on the cross the veil was ripped in two from top to bottom Matthew 27:51. God removed the separation between himself and the believer, So now you have access to the Holy of Holies within your own self!! You are the temple of the living God. But, how often do we even think about that. No we just come to the Lord in our 5-10 minute prayers without much thought of His Holiness. No reverence. Well God wants us to spend time with Him, there in this sacred place, and once you get past your requests for daily and earthly needs. He wants your earnestness in the next phase of prayer. Imagine you can be part of the salvation of one or maybe many, maybe thousands or more! But to do this you need to cry out to the Lord in prayer fervently, in prayer. To do this you must first be touched by the things that touch the heart of God. “A man after God’s own heart” Jesus came and dies for the lost. Every revival, or move of the Lord began with one man and a broken heart with fervent prayer.
Of course the scripture above says a righteous man. Of course no man (or woman) is righteous except for God (in 3 persons), But the righteous of the believer is Christ. So it means that you are walking with Christ, daily looking to Him to keep you from stumbling, and quickly asking for forgiveness when you do. We confess to the Lord, and it also says to confess one to another, so find someone that you can confess to. That is another huge topic, and of course it requires you to be careful as to what you confess to whom. E.G. probably do not tell your wife of your struggles with lust in your mind, tell a close male friend to pray for you. Etc.
For a great sermon on this part about Elijah I will link one of my favorite preachers Leonard Ravenhill here. The awesome thing about Elijah here is that his life is summed up in two word “he prayed”