Praying in the Spirit

But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit (Jude 1:20 ESV).

praying in the spirit

What does praying in the Spirit mean? Two words are important to understand as we briefly review this subject: in and by.

The preposition “in” describes the sphere from which the activity originates. When we pray in the Spirit, our prayer originates from the realm of the Spirit, rather than mere human abilities in the realm of the flesh. The preposition “by” describes the agent performing the action. When we pray by the Spirit, it simply means the Holy Spirit is the One leading, directing, or influencing the prayer.

Therefore, prayer in the Spirit means prayer that is both originating in, and directed by, the Holy Spirit. But how do we do this?

There are two broad categories. The first is being sensitive to the Spirit, and following His leadership in prayer. You pray and are conscious of what you are praying for, but the prayer is prompted and directed by the Spirit. For example, Rom 8:26 tells us that the Holy Spirit is at work, guiding your prayer, when you feel a heavy prayer burden or urge to pray for something. The second category is the precious gift of praying in tongues. It is praying in the Spirit by default. This is God’s gift to help us pray in the Spirit without trying to “be in the Spirit”.


Can you see the two broad categories of prayer in the Spirit (1 Cor. 14:15)? Declare that “Every day, I am growing in my ability to pray in the Holy Spirit ”.


Become conscious of the Holy Spirit as you pray. Be sensitive to His leadership. Prayer is not a lifeless routine; it is a Spirit-led activity.


Pray that the Lord will lead you to take advantage of all types of prayer in the Holy Spirit.

Recommended Read: Praying in the Spirit will build you up

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