for who can we ‘pray’

this study focus on who we may pray for when we are in conversation with yhwh. may we pray for both the righteous and the lawless?

torah - teachings







7 “and now, return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, and let him pray for you and you live. but if you do not return her, know that you shall certainly die, you and all that are yours.”



16 pharaoh then called for mosheh and aharon in haste, and said, “i have sinned against יהוה your elohim and against you.

17 “ad now, please forgive my sin only this once, and pray to יהוה your elohim, that he would only turn away this death from me.”



1 and it came to be, when the people were as complainers, it was evil in the ears of יהוה. and יהוה heard it, and his displeasure burned. and the fire of יהוה burned among them, and consumed those in the outskirts of the camp.

2 and the people cried out to mosheh, and mosheh prayed to יהוה, and the fire died down.



7 then the people came to mosheh, and said, “we have sinned, for we have spoken against יהוה and against you. pray to יהוה to take away the serpents from us.” so mosheh prayed on behalf of the people.

nevi'im - prophets





1 samuel


19 and all the people said to shemu’ĕl, “pray for your servants to יהוה your elohim, that we do not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil of asking for ourselves a sovereign.” 20 and shemu’ĕl said to the people, “do not fear. you have done all this evil. only, do not turn aside from following יהוה. and you shall serve יהוה with all your heart, 21 and do not turn aside after worthless matters which do not profit or deliver, for they are worthless. 22 “for יהוה would not cast away his people, for his great name’s sake, seeing it has pleased יהוה to make you his people. 23 “also, as for me, far be it from me that i should sin against יהוה in ceasing to pray for you, but i shall teach you the good and straight way. 24 “only fear יהוה, and you shall serve him in truth with all your heart, for consider what marvels he has done for you. 25 “but if you persist in doing evil, both you and your sovereign are consumed.”

ket'vim - Wisdom Literature







29 יהוה is far from the wrong ones, but he hears the prayer of the righteous

  • by logical reasoning, yhwh is close to the righteous ones, but he does not hear the prayer of the lawless

brit chadesha - New Covenant





1 john


21 beloved ones, if our heart does not condemn us, we have boldness toward elohim.

22 and whatever we ask we receive from him, because we guard his commands and do what is pleasing in his sight.

23 and this is his command, that we should believe in the name of his son יהושע messiah and love one another, as he gave us command.

24 and the one guarding his commands stays in him, and he in him. and by this we know that he stays in us, by the spirit which he gave us.


14:10-14; 21-23

10 “do you not believe that i am in the father, and the father is in me? the words that i speak to you i do not speak from myself. but the father who stays in me does his works.

11 “believe me that i am in the father and the father in me, otherwise believe me because of the works themselves.

12 “truly, truly, i say to you, he who believes in me, the works that i do he shall do also. and greater works than these he shall do, because i go to my father.

13 “and whatever you ask in my name, that i shall do, in order that the father might be esteemed in the son.

14 “if you ask whatever in my name, i shall do it...

21 “he who possesses my commands and guards them, it is he who loves me. and he who loves me shall be loved by my father, and i shall love him and manifest myself to him.”

22 yehuḏah – not the one from qerioth – said to him, “master, what has come about that you are about to manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?”

23 יהושע answered him, “if anyone loves me, he shall guard my word. and my father shall love him, and we shall come to him and make our stay with him.

1 john


14 and this is the boldness that we have in him, that if we ask whatever according to his desire, he hears us.

  • by logical reasoning, if we do not ask (live) according to his desire, he does not hear us



21 and יהושע answering, said to them, “truly, i say to you, if you have belief and do not doubt, you shall not only do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘be removed and be thrown into the sea,’ it shall be done.

22 “and whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.”

23 and when he had come into the set-apart place, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, “by what authority are you doing these? and who gave you this authority?”



7 “ask and it shall be given to you, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened to you.

8 “for everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened.

9 “or is there a man among you who, if his son asks for bread, shall give him a stone?

10 “or if he asks for a fish, shall he give him a snake?

11 “if you then, being wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your father who is in the heavens give what is good to those who ask him!

12 “therefore, whatever you wish men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the torah and the prophets.



41 so they took away the stone where the dead man was laid. and יהושע lifted up his eyes and said, “father, i thank you that you have heard Me.

42 “and i know that you always hear me, but because of the crowd standing by i said this, in order that they believe that you sent me.”

43 and when he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “elʽazar, come out!”



16 confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, so that you are healed. the earnest prayer of a righteous one accomplishes much.

  • by logical reasoning, the 'earnest' prayer of the lawless one accomplishes little