As Christians, we constantly pray for our governmental leaders. It is something that the Bible commands us to always pray and intercede for. However, we are not just limited to praying for our nation’s leaders. We can and should pray for world leaders as well. Praying for other world leaders makes a tremendous impact on the world’s well being. If these world leaders desire war, the world will quickly spiral into chaos. If they choose peace and harmony, the world will be more peaceful. That is why it is essential to pray for world leaders. Just as we pray for the United States’ governmental leaders because they will significantly impact our nation, we pray for world leaders because they affect the countries they are leading and the rest of the world. 1 Timothy 2:1-2 teaches us that we are to make supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving for all people, including for kings and those in high positions. In our context, it means praying for world leaders.
1 Timothy 2:1-2
I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
How do you pray for world leaders?
The most important thing you can pray for related to world leaders is that they get to hear the Gospel. The Gospel is the ultimate solution to everything. No amount of United Nations interventions, treaties, or other initiatives can provide permanent solutions to the world’s problems, such as extreme poverty, conflicts that cost the lives of innocent civilians, food shortages, and many more. World leaders can come up with solutions to de-escalate conflict, but they will never deal with the very cause of that conflict, which is the sinful heart of the people, as this can only be dealt with by Christ alone. They can come up with the best strategies to address the shortage of food in certain parts of the world and even use the best technologies to address it, but they will never be able to provide the bread that gives eternal life. That is how important the Gospel is, which is why we are to pray for the Gospel to propagate and reach world leaders. We are to include Christians working in those other governments to have the boldness and courage to preach the Gospel to the leaders for whom they are working. Just as the apostle Paul said, how can they believe if they did not hear the Gospel at all? And how can they hear if no one preaches the Gospel to them?
Another thing that we can pray for world leaders is for God to give them grace and work in their hearts. Unless the Holy Spirit turns their hearts of stone to hearts of flesh, they will never repent and believe in the person and work of Christ because their hearts are hardened. That is why we must pray that they hear the Gospel, so the Holy Spirit will soften their hearts and open their spiritually blinded eyes so that they may see the kingdom of God, repent, and believe in the person and work of Christ.
Here is an example of how you can pray for world leaders to get to hear the Gospel and repent:
Holy Spirit, You are the One who gives grace and works in the hearts of the people. I pray for You to provide boldness and courage to the Christians working in the governments of different nations that they will be unashamed to preach the Gospel, even if they are in a country where Christianity is prohibited. Give them the open doors and the wisdom to do so. I also pray for world leaders to hear the Gospel, and that as they listen to it, may You turn their hearts of stone to hearts of flesh, so that they may receive the Gospel and repent. I also pray that You will open their spiritual eyes and cause them to be born again in the Spirit and see the kingdom of God. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?
A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;
2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:
3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Another thing you can do as you pray for world leaders is to pray for God’s will to be done. When Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, one of the things he taught them was to pray for God’s will to be done. For example, imagine there is a conflict somewhere in the world where innocent civilians are affected. Certainly, God’s will is for the war to stop and for peace and love to abound, despite the people’s differences. That means you should pray for God’s will to be done regarding the world leaders by praying that they shall not result in actions that only affect civilians and that they would instead pursue peace. That shows us that to pray for God’s will to be done, you must first know God’s will. We know God’s will by reading our Bibles because it is the word of God. We are confident that God hears our prayers if we pray according to His will.
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
1 John 5:14-15
14 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:
15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.
Using the example where there is a particular conflict between nations, here is an example of how you can pray for God’s will to be done regarding the decisions of world leaders:
Father in heaven, You are sovereign over everything. I pray for the world leaders involved in the conflict that they shall not further escalate the war, which affects innocent civilians. Instead, may they pursue peace and seek to resolve the dispute in a peaceful manner. I pray that the leaders of the nations involved are never consumed with greed, ambition, and wickedness. I pray for Your will to be done in this matter, Father. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Another thing to remember regarding praying for God’s will is that having a renewed mind is essential. If we want to offer prayers for world leaders that are according to the will of God, prayers that are acceptable and good in the eyes of God, then we need to have a renewed mind. A renewed mind is the work of the Holy Spirit in us as we read God’s word and meditate on it. If we have a renewed mind, we can discern God’s will, along with what is good and acceptable, and pray for those things. That means praying for world leaders to hear the Gospel, for them to lead not out of their greed or ambition, but for the common good of the people, for them to stand united in solving the world’s problems, and so much more. Even on your own, you can pray what you want to pray for world leaders because you can discern the will of God and what is good and acceptable and then pray for those things.
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Below is an example of a random prayer you can pray for world leaders. It is random in the sense that it is something you can pray for as you discern God’s will and that which is good and acceptable in His sight:
Heavenly Father, You are the almighty God who sits enthroned over everything else in the universe. I pray for world leaders to stand united in solving the problems in this world. I pray that a sense of solidarity shall abound among them and help each other. I pray that as world leaders serve, they will serve for the common good of their people and the world, and not for their selfish interests. Most of all, I pray for the world leaders to encounter Christ. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
In the end, praying for the Gospel to reach world leaders and repent is the best prayer we can offer them. Only if the world leaders are in Christ can we expect them to lead with godliness. Apart from Christ, they are only capable of being relatively good. If we want to have God-fearing world leaders, we should always pray for them to surrender their lives to Christ.