(Ricky Scaparo) 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 – “Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.”
As I was preparing to enter the next 21 days of prayer and fasting a passage of scripture burned in my heart that I hadn’t read in over 15 Years. First Chronicles Chapter 4 Verse 10 is a verse dealing with a man who was only mentioned once in the Bible, However you may remember his name from a very popular best-selling book by Bruce Wilkerson years ago entitled “The Prayer Of Jabez”. Wilkerson highlighted Jabez’s prayer in great detail through this publication, and captured the attention of the the world. There are some noteworthy things to mention of Jabez that I believe the Lord is, for whatever reason, bringing to light again in this season of 2016. The bible indicates that Jabez was more honorable than all of his brothers.
I believe this trait is extremely rare in 2016, especially in the body of Christ. According to Webster’s Dictionary the term “Honorable” means – “…deserving honor and respect, having or showing honesty and good moral character, fair and proper : not deserving blame or criticism.” Oh that we could find men and women of God today that would possess these powerful traits! Today we have pulpits full of people who know how to move the crowds with their gifts and their charisma only to have them soon fall into a moral failure.
The bible tells us that a “Good Name” is to be chosen over “Great Riches”. In otherwards, your character will always keep you where your gift has brought you. We have many who are full of gifts, talents and charisma but drop the ball when it comes to moral standards and ethics of ministry. But the Bible says Jabez stood out from all of his brothers as the most “Honorable”. There was something else about Jabez that stands out: His name actually means “Pain” as Jabez was birthed in significant pain. Jabez came forth in Pain but desired to leave in Blessing!
I’ve always said that no matter how your life started or what you’ve been thru or going thru, It’s not how you start or started but how you finish that matters! Perhaps you’re like Jabez and got dealt a “Bad Hand” from the day you were born? Maybe you were born in poverty, sickness, rejection, or abandonment? The good news is Jabez recognized that his childhood wasn’t overshadowed by his mother’s sorrows, but he was determined to change his destiny and make his ending greater than his beginning. Thus he prayed “Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me!”
Jabez could have chosen to remain bitter and use the hand he was dealt as an excuse to remain in a lifestyle of “Pain“, but he recognized that he had the power of “Life and Death” in his tongue and the favor of God Almighty on his side to change the course of his Destiny! Let’s examine the prayer of Jabez and how we can apply this prayer to our own personal prayer life and walk with God.
- Jabez asked the Lord to Bless him Indeed – Jabez’ life was surrounded with grief and sorrow and even heard his mother verbally tag him as a child of “Pain”, sorrow, and grief however; he did something you and I have to do as believers and declare the “promises of God” over our lives and not come into agreement with our circumstances. Jabez began to ask the lord to “Bless” his life indeed! Meaning “To be connected with God”, Pleasant, Whole and Complete. Perhaps life has dealt you a mess and for years you have been in agreement with your circumstances, your economic status, your broken marriage, your dysfunctional relationship or whatever may have caused you years and seasons of “Pain” The good news is you can come into agreement with Heaven and God’s Kingdom and ask His “Will to be done on Earth, As it is in Heaven”! That all His promises would be Yes and “Amen” to those who believe! Oh that the Lord would bless you indeed!
- Jabez asked the Lord to “Enlarge his Coast” During this next 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting I am asking and believing the Lord for the ministry of End Time Headlines to expand and enlarge its territory in 2016! I am believing this Ministry will gain greater influence and greater territory for the Kingdom of God! What if you believed God for your Ministry or Business to “Enlarge its Coast” in 2016? More Souls, More Customers, More Influence and More Impact for the Glory of God! The Bible tells us that John the Baptist remained in “Wildernesses” until the Fullness of time had come and then he was revealed to Israel. I’m believing that those voices in the Wilderness will begin to be heard in 2016!
- That thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! – One of the things I am personally believing the Lord for in 2016 is “Divine Health and Protection”. I believe the Lord has appointed the Angels of the Lord over his children to “bear them up in their hands, Lest they dash their foot against a stone” – Psalm 91. I’m believing that the Angel of the Lord is encamping around about those who fear him. –Psalm 34:7. I’m believing that it’s the will of the Lord that I would prosper and be in Health, even as my soul prospers! – 3 John 2. We need to partner with the prayer of Jabez and believe the lord for what he has already declared in his word. A powerful and encouraging story in the Bible is the story of Jacob regarding the power of covenant.The Bible tells us that Jacob in Genesis Chapter 28 went out from Beersheba and went toward Haran and came to a certain place and stayed there all night, because the sun had set. And he took one of the stones of that place and put it at his head, and he lay down in that place to sleep. 12 Then he dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.13 And behold, the Lord stood above it and said: “I am the Lord God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants. 14 Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed. 15 Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you.”
16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” 17 And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven!”
18 Then Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put at his head, set it up as a pillar, and poured oil on top of it. 19 And he called the name of that place Bethel, but the name of that city had been Luz previously. 20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me, and keep me in this way that I am going, and give me bread to eat and clothing to put on, 21 so that I come back to my father’s house in peace, then the Lord shall be my God. 22 And this stone which I have set as a pillar shall be God’s house, and of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You.”
Did you catch Jacob’s vow? He told the Lord that he would tithe a tenth of all his increase if the Lord was faithful to provide all his needs and that he would return home safely! I believe the Lord is no respecter of persons and can honor us with the same blessing and reward today! As you can see there is some powerful insights and prayer strategies that can be pulled out of the simple “Prayer of Jabez” that we need to partner with in this next season!