There are four types of prayer in the Bible. They are prayers of adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. Prayer is the way for us to communicate with God and to maintain a constant connection with him.
TYPE 1: ADORATION
Prayers of Adoration are prayers that praise and esteem God. This type of prayer comes from a place of reverence and are often used in worship to glorify God and to magnify his name.
“Praise ye the Lord. Praise ye the Lord from the heavens: praise him in the heights. Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts. Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light. Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens. Let them praise the name of the Lord: for he commanded, and they were created. He hath also stablished them
Here in Psalms 148:1-14, the psalmist acknowledges the power and the honor that is God’s and God’s alone. The psalmist elevates God to his appropriate place saying, “his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.” The psalmist glorifies God’s mighty power by describing his works and his creation. Lastly, the psalmist calls on all people to praise their maker and to glorify his name.
TYPE 2: CONFESSION
Prayers of Confession are prayers where we acknowledge doing wrong. We admit to our guilts, failures, and sins. During this type of prayer we are accepting blame and responsibility for our actions. We are expressing a desire to change. These prayers come from a place of remorse in our hearts. They are the means of asking for God’s mercy and forgiveness.
“And David’s heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. And David said unto the Lord, I have sinned greatly in that I have done: and now, I beseech thee, O Lord, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.” 1 Chronicles 21:8
David is confessing his sin and taking ownership for his actions. He is repenting and asking forgiveness from God.
TYPE 3: THANKSGIVING
Prayers of Thanksgiving are prayers expressing gratitude toward God. We are giving thanks for all he gives, both physical and spiritual.
Jesus in Matthew 11:25 says, “At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.”
Paul speaking to the Colossians church in Colossians 3:17 says, “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”
TYPE 4: SUPPLICATION
Prayers of Supplication are prayers in which we are humbly asking for something. This type of prayer could also be begging earnestly for something from God. These prayers include our petitions and requests to God.
Jesus praying to God the Father in Matthew 26:39 reads, “And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it
Jesus is earnestly asking God if there is another way to fulfill God’s plan of redemption without dying on the cross.
TIP for Remembering the 4 Types of Prayer
Think of the
A – Adoration
C – Confession
T – Thanksgiving
S – Supplication
Prayer is the avenue Christians use to speak to God the Father. Our prayers may fall into one specific category type, or they may cross over into several of the types listed above. Regardless of the kind of prayer that we offer to God, prayer is powerful. We should use it often to ask him for the things we need and to share with him our joys and struggles. We should use it to thank him and glorify him, and express our love for him. Prayer strengthens us, and the more we use it, the stronger we will be.