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What is the Prayer of Agreement?

By Dale A. Robbins

About the Author

"If two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them." (Matthew 18:19-20 NKJV)

These words of Jesus are among the most important reasons why we gather together as the body of Christ, the church, and is the basis for all of our prayer meetings with other believers. Jesus promised that if a minimum of "just two" of his followers will come into agreement about anything to be asked in prayer, their Heavenly Father will bring it to pass.

What makes this especially remarkable is the association He makes with a mind-boggling truth, that where two or more believers are gathered together in his name -- that is, at the same time in the same place, where His name is lifted up -- he will manifest his unseen presence in their midst!

If every believer could grasp this awesome reality, it would change their life and their entire perspective of coming together with the church! Think of it, the actual person of the Lord Jesus Christ comes into the presence of his followers. Although unseen, he is there just as he was with Peter, James or John, available to touch lives with his presence, his love, and his power.

The word "Agree" comes from the Greek "SUMPHONEO," which means to be harmonious or to agree with, the foundation of the English words, symphony and concert. Thus, the prayer of agreement can be viewed as a prayer petition voiced or concurred to by more than one person at the same time for the same thing. However the idea that Jesus was teaching, appears to implicate more than just the prayer, but also the purpose and attitude of those assembled.

Similarly, the phrase "gathered together" comes from the Greek words, "SUN," which refers to unity or completeness, and "AGO," that means to collect or assemble. Combined as SUNAGO, the term conveys the idea of coming together in unity, or in "one accord," which was the same description of the gathering on the day of Pentecost before the Lord's followers were filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. "When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place" (Acts 2:1). "One accord" is another interesting phrase, that comes from HOMOTHYMADON, a word for unanimous or single mindedness.

These word studies help us see a very important principle pertaining to prayer and spiritual things. Unity between believers, perhaps better described as "harmony," is considered essential and mandatory, as important as being united with the Lord himself. Among many other references, Jesus conveyed this thought in what's often referred to as his Farewell Prayer, just before he was betrayed and crucified. As He prayed for His followers, He asked the Father "...that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me" (John 17:21 NKJV).

And as important as unity or harmony is to any local church, it takes on an even more amplified affect when a broader range of believers lay aside their differences to combine their love and harmony toward Christ and each other. This idea resembles the combined voices of a vast choir. I find it interesting how that the words accord, harmony or symphony can be applied interchangeably between spiritual things or music. My wife formerly sang with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, whose symphonic choir was one of the largest and most beautiful I had ever listened to. And amazingly, as many more voices were added and blended together in this choir, it did not diminish anything, but only served to increase and enhance the beauty and volume.

What becomes clear, is that God and His Word places a high value on the unity or harmony of His people... insomuch that it is associated with God's favor,  anointing, or blessing. The psalmist wrote, "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Running down on the beard, The beard of Aaron, Running down on the edge of his garments. It is like the dew of Hermon, Descending upon the mountains of Zion; For there the Lord commanded the blessing-- Life forevermore." (Psalms 133:1-3 NKJV)

In contrast to how we may view various churches, congregations, or denominations, God only recognizes ONE church, which encompasses all true believers. Christ's command to "love one another," didn't apply only to the members of the local church we attend, but to ALL genuine followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is that love and harmony between the broad body of believers, that will provide evidence to the world that we are truly Christ's disciples. As Jesus said, "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another" (John 13:34-35 NKJV). And the more that we attempt to see such things as God does, to acknowledge and combine our love, faith and prayers with other genuinely born again believers, we will find His anointing, favor and blessing.

No, of course, this doesn't mean that we lay aside the essential matters of faith in Christ, to bring unity between cultic or heretical beliefs. However, within our various Christian churches and denominations, there can be a wide dispersion of doctrines or traditions which have no bearing on whether a person will go to Heaven or not. For instance, a good Biblical understanding of eschatology is a beneficial blessing for every Christian, but will not affect whether that person's name is written in the Lamb's Book of Life.

Even if we don't think other believers measure up to everything they should believe or how they should live, if they meet the bare essentials of the new birth, we need to entreat them as brethren, with the hope that our mutual love, faith and forbearance will help encourage their growing relationship with Christ, and honor the Lord's desire for His church to be "one." The Apostle Paul described the entry-level Christian, as one who believes and confesses that Jesus is Lord. "If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved" (Romans 10:9-10 NLT).

Just as a variety of views exist between churches, each person within a congregation also has their differing opinions, preferences, or even complaints. However, for the sake of the unity of the body, so to preserve and invite the presence of God, Paul wrote that we should lay aside divisive attitudes and humble ourselves before one another. "I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Ephesians 4:1-3 NKJV).

Again, Paul wrote an admonition of unity to the Corinthian church, that was riddled with division over devotion to different leaders and personalities (perhaps the first emergence of denominations), as well as the application of spiritual gifts, discipline and other matters. He said, "I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose" (1 Corinthians 1:10 NLT).

Remember this: Unity does not mean "conformity" to the identical opinions or beliefs of other believers, but it means "harmony," that is to "blend" our love and devotion in Christ toward our fellow believers. As followers of our Lord Jesus Christ, may we come together and harmonize our love, prayers and faith, to make beautiful music in the hearing of our Lord in Heaven!

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This article (VL-196) is copyrighted © by Dr. Dale A. Robbins, 1990-2020 and is a publication of Victorious Publications, Grass Valley, CA - Nashville, TN. Unless otherwise stated, scripture references were taken from The New King James Bible, © Thomas Nelson Inc., 1982. In some references to real persons, pseudonyms may have been used to preserve their privacy. You may download this article for personal use as long as you retain credit to the author. Obtain permission before reproducing copies for any reason, by filling out our simple use permission form. Many of our writings are also available as free pdf tri-fold pamphlets, which can be downloaded for reproduction from our Online Catalog. For media reproduction rights, or to obtain quantities of this title in other formats, email us. If you have appreciated these online materials, help us reach the world with the Gospel by considering a monthly or one-time tax-deductable donation.