How High Are Your Gates?
While speaking at a Church Prayer Leaders Network conference, David Bryant (of Proclaim Hope) taught attendees how to declare Scripture over situations that are troubling in life. He encouraged them to pray out of Psalm 24.
First, Bryant explained the significance of the phrase “lift up your heads, O you gates” (v. 7, 9). When building a temple to their god, ancient peoples believed an intimidating sign to outsiders was to make the gates to the temple as high as possible and the headplate or mantle of the gate as large as possible. They believed that the bigger the headplate or “head,” the more powerful their god.
So that adds a significant meaning to the declaration of the phrase. What the psalmist might be saying is, “Lift up your heads, gates, because you aren’t big enough for our God! The King of glory can’t pass through those puny gates, so open them wide.”
Turn Scripture to Prayer
How does this translate into a great prayer idea? Bryant encouraged participants to insert into the phrase whatever wall, stronghold, or circumstance was weighing them down—and declare it. For example, one might pray, “Lift up your head, you gate of doubt; be lifted up you ancient door of uncertainty. Let the King of glory come in.” Or “Lift up your head, oh gate of fear; be lifted up you ancient door of anxiety. Let the King of glory come in.”
The group then together, out loud and all at once, started declaring what gate they needed to see opened. It was a powerful time of each person declaring that Jesus Christ was bigger than any problem. He was going to enter the circumstances of their lives. It built their faith!
You can lead groups in this exercise of turning Scripture into prayer, or use it in your own personal prayer time when you feel you need an extra measure of faith or a reminder of the awesomeness and power of God.
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