During Peter’s imprisonment, the church prayed constantly and intensely to God for his safety…
Back in Jerusalem, hard times came to the disciples. King Herod violently seized some who belonged to the church with the intention of mistreating them. He ordered James (brother of John) to be executed by the sword, the first of those appointed as emissaries to be martyred. This move pleased Jewish public opinion, so he decided to arrest Peter also. During the holy festival of Unleavened Bread, he caught Peter and imprisoned him, assigning four squads of soldiers to guard him. He planned to bring him to trial publicly after the Passover holiday. Acts 12:1-4 (The Voice Bible)
If any story in the New Testament shows the power of corporate prayer it is this one. Peter is in prison chained between two Roman guards, asleep. Suddenly an angel appears, breaks the chains that bind Peter and leads him out of the prison to safety. The believers who were assembled at John Marks house were “praying constantly and intensely to God for Peters safety” Acts 12:5 but did not expect Peters deliverance to come so fast or in such an amazing way!
Do you know people who are held captive in a prison of their own making? or maybe in prison in a literal sense for their faith? Is there a situation in your own life that needs fervent prayer? Let this story encourage your heart that God is able to break chains, open closed doors and deliver!*
From The One Year Praying Through the Bible © Cheri Fuller