Breakthrough Prayer


Praying from a Position of Righteousness

Even though faith is an essential element in prayer, it is not enough to assure that our prayers will be answered and that we will achieve the breakthroughs we hope for. When we pray, even more important than having faith is being in a place of righteousness. In any area where the righteousness of God does not prevail, our faith will not be sufficient, because righteousness is the seat of faith. Additionally, although God has given every person a measure of faith (see, for example, Romans 12:3, 6), there are some matters that require an extra dose of faith, and to achieve them, it is equally necessary to be standing in a place of righteousness. We can have enormous faith, but if our life is not right before God, He will not answer our prayers. Apart from righteousness, faith becomes ineffective.

Who Is Righteous?

This leads us to ask, who is considered righteous? It is those who remain aligned with God’s nature and character through Christ. When we are not aligned with God, with His name and His Word, we become an easy prey for the enemy. It was for this reason that, at the cross of Calvary, Jesus took all our faults and sins upon Himself. The Son made us righteous before the Father—as righteous as He is! (See, for example, Romans 3:21–22.)

Jesus said, “This is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matthew 26:28). To be “justified” and made righteous is to be brought back to a state of complete innocence, where every sin is erased and there is no record left of our transgressions. To be justified is to be forgiven and cleansed from all iniquity.

The key to understanding righteousness and justification is the word remission, which means to deliver someone from the guilt or the punishment they deserve for their sin. The term reflects the definitive and perfect character of Christ’s sacrifice. In essence, what it expresses is that, due to the finished work at the cross, God doesn’t see us as sinners but as righteous. No human being could ever have made themselves righteous on their own; God had to send His only Son to earth to redeem us from sin.

In any area of our lives in which we are not standing in the righteousness Jesus won for us, the enemy will have the legal right to accuse us before God. For example, if a man mistreats his wife, he won’t receive an answer to his prayers in the area of family, because his position of unrighteousness will hinder his prayers. (See 1 Peter 3:7.) If a businessperson abuses their employees, not paying them a fair wage or respecting their rights, they won’t be standing in a position of righteousness in the area of business and finances, and God will not hear their prayers. (See, for example, Colossians 4:1.)

Therefore, before we ask something of God, we must examine ourselves to see if we are violating His commandments or not reflecting His nature and will. Jesus always lived in righteousness, and that is why the Father answered all His prayers. The Son continually remained in a close relationship with the Father, aligned with His perfect will. That is why, when Jesus was in front of Lazarus’s tomb, rather than praying for a miracle to happen, He simply gave thanks to God, saying, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. And I know that You always hear Me…” (John 11:41–42). He always prayed from a place in the Spirit in which the word impossible was meaningless.

How to Walk in Righteousness

1. Practice Repentance as a Lifestyle

Every time we sin against God, we must repent. Repentance brings us back into the presence of God and opens the channels for Him to hear our prayers. “He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).

Once you receive God’s forgiveness, don’t allow the enemy to keep accusing you of those sins, because Jesus has already erased them. You are justified by your faith in Jesus and His redeeming work on the cross; your sins have been removed by the blood of Christ, and in His name, you are empowered to do what He has commissioned you to do. Ask God to cleanse you, justify you, and sanctify you. Once you are in a place of righteousness, the channels for speaking with Him are open. 

2. Seek First the Righteousness of God

Put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:24)

Jesus taught His disciples to seek and follow after God’s righteousness. In Matthew 6:33, He said, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” The phrase “seek first” urges us to make the righteousness of the kingdom a priority. This means that, above anything else, we should always desire to be in good standing with God. We should regularly ask ourselves, “Am I right with God? Am I aligned with His will?”

3. Always Watch and Pray

Paul exhorted the Thessalonian believers to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). It is vital for believers who wish to maintain their place of righteousness to watch and be careful that their prayers do not weaken. On the contrary, we must make sure our prayer time grows and becomes the most important task of each day, because our relationship and fellowship with God depend on it. When we watch in the presence of God with a righteous heart, the Holy Spirit shows us any areas of unrighteousness in our lives, or where we have allowed the enemy to gain a foothold. (See Ephesians 4:27 NIV.) We must pray daily, without ceasing, because whether consciously or unconsciously, we may expose ourselves through sin and give room for the enemy to work.

Thought: Our position of righteousness must be reaffirmed daily.