A Note from Hixon Frank
Hixon Frank

Hey Church! 

We have been developing our “personal prayer rhythms” and have looked at prayers of Adoration, Lament, Thanksgiving and Petition. This week, we are looking at prayers of DELIVERANCE. The Bible is full of these kinds of prayers in both the Old and the New Testament. But perhaps none is more recognized than the prayer of deliverance desperately spoken from a famous prophet almost 2900 years ago….

“None of the sailors wanted to do it. After all, this thin, old man had never done anything to them. But the seas were so rough it seemed like the only way to save themselves… 

Hours before, in the port city of Joppa, the preparations for the 2500-mile voyage to Tarshish were routine. The ship was loaded with cargo, equipment was checked, and riggings were secured. But this trip would be unusual because a rebellious Prophet of God paid for passage on the ship.  Some of the men recognized the grey-haired prophet and the rumor that he was running from God. Soon they would all know.

The prophet kept mostly to himself, and as if to get away from God’s prying eyes, he went below deck into the cargo hold where he was alone and hidden. The prophet was exhausted from his journey to the port city and from the stresses of running from God. Laying down to rest, he knew, deep down, that it was only a matter of time before things would get bad for him… and he was right…it got bad…really bad!

Storms were not uncommon on this part of the Mediterranean Sea, but this one seemed different. Coming upon them suddenly like it was focused on their ship alone. As the winds grew stronger, the sailors tried, slowly at first, then in desperation, to save the ship. Things got so bad that, in a last-ditch effort to save the ship, they threw all of the cargo overboard. This did little to help and the ship remained helpless against the sea’s onslaught. 

Out of desperation, the captain, a veteran commander, demanded that everyone pray to their various gods hoping that one of them would spare the ship. After hours of fighting the sea, no one really cared which one it was! He even went below deck to the prophet to get him to pray to his God! 

With sad determination, Jonah, the thin old prophet, told the crew to throw him overboard as it was the only way that God would relent, and their lives would be spared.

With some reluctance, the crew decided to follow the prophet’s advice. So, they threw the prophet Jonah into the sea, all the while begging God not to find them guilty of “shedding innocent blood.” 

And with that horrifying act, the sea and the waves were calmed.”

Now, most of us know the rest of the story. Jonah was swallowed by a big fish and spent three days and three nights in its belly. It must have been terrifying for him! Not only was he in the belly of a fish dying a miserable death… he had no one to blame but himself!

So, he did what most of us would do…he prayed. Desperately PRAYED!

Jonah 2:1-10

Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish:

I called to the Lord in my distress, and he answered me. I cried out for help from deep inside Sheol; you heard my voice. When you threw me into the depths, into the heart of the seas, the current overcame me. All your breakers and your billows swept over me.
And I said, “I have been banished from your sight, yet I will look once more toward your holy temple.” The water engulfed me up to the neck; the watery depths overcame me;
seaweed was wrapped around my head. I sank to the foundations of the mountains,
the earth’s gates shut behind me forever! Then you raised my life from the Pit, Lord my God! As my life was fading away, I remembered the Lord, and my prayer came to you,
to your holy temple. Those who cherish worthless idols abandon their faithful love,
but as for me, I will sacrifice to you with a voice of thanksgiving. I will fulfill what I have vowed. Salvation belongs to the Lord.

10 Then the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land.

Incredible story, isn’t it?

Prayers of deliverance are similar to prayers of petition. They are requests made to God to save us (or others) from challenging or dangerous situations. But they also acknowledge that we can do nothing apart from God and that He has the power to save.

Most of us will likely never be in the belly of a fish, but we may very well need deliverance! 

  • Perhaps you or a family member is in a self-destructive spiral and can’t seem to break free. PRAY for deliverance!
  • Maybe you have a child or grandchild caught in sin and you want more than anything that they be restored and healthy. PRAY for deliverance!
  • Possibly you have a prodigal who has no desire for things of God? PRAY for deliverance!
  • Has addiction to porn or substance abuse robbed you of your hope for ever breaking free from it? PRAY for deliverance!
  • Desperately… PRAY… for deliverance!

Along with Jonah’s prayer, read the following passages and feel their desperate nature!

Psalm 3

“O Lord, how many are my foes! Many are rising against me; many are saying of my soul, ‘There is no salvation for him in God.’ But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head. I cried aloud to the Lord, and he answered me from his holy hill. I lay down and slept; I woke again, for the Lord sustained me. I will not be afraid of many thousands of people who have set themselves against me all around. Arise, O Lord! Save me, O my God! For you strike all my enemies on the cheek; you break the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to the Lord; your blessing be on your people!”

Luke 22:39-42

“And [Jesus] came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. And when he came to the place, he said to them, ‘Pray that you may not enter into temptation.’ And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.’”

My prayer for you is that you will boldly pray that God would deliver you or your loved one from sin, danger, and lostness. And keep on praying in that manner!


You have been prayed for today,