The Prayer Meeting Register

It is interesting that God notes the names of those who are at the prayer meeting! Acts 1. 13 - 14. When He marks the register for your assembly prayer meeting, are you ‘present’ or ‘absent’? Here are some who were present on this occasion.


She was the privileged vessel through whom the Son of God came into the world. You are greatly privileged spiritually, and it is good to express gratitude by being at the prayer meeting.

The Lord’s brothers

They had been unbelievers and fairly hostile to the Saviour, John 7. 1 - 9. One day they trusted Him and now they were attending a prayer meeting. You should never give up on anyone – keep praying. One day, seemingly hopeless cases could be sitting beside you at the prayer meeting!


He would become a mighty preacher, and some of you may be budding preachers. Don’t miss the prayer meeting to do your preparation. Preparation involves prayer. Preparing the man is more important than preparing the message!


Although a young man, he had only ten more years of life, Acts 12. 2. While he was young he learned the value of the prayer meeting. Good that he did not postpone his attendance to a later stage when life would be more leisurely. For him, that period never came.


John is always mentioned in association with his brother James. There was harmony between them, seen here at the prayer meeting. ‘Two of you’ agreeing is necessary for answers to prayer, Matt. 18. 19. If James had a relatively short life, John’s was long. His last days were spent on the barren island of Patmos, a difficult environment for an old man. Having lived long, he faced deterioration and infirmity. His experience of prayer stood him in good stead for old age.


He had a great aptitude for personal witnessing. The Lord promised that he would be a ‘fisher of men’, Mark 1. 17, and he was constantly busy at his task, John 1. 40 - 41; 6. 8 - 9; 12. 20 - 22. Andrew had learned that personal evangelists can never operate independently. He knew the importance of gathering with others at the throne of grace.


He had experienced a trial that none of the others had to undergo. The Lord had asked him, ‘Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?’ John 6. 5. The following verse explains that this was a test for Philip, but why Philip? Why not any of the others? There is no answer except that the Lord is sovereign, and He puts some to the test when others are exempt. When going through a testing time, meeting for prayer is vital.


On one occasion he had been absent and had missed meeting the Lord, John 20. 24 - 25. He had learned his lesson; never again did he risk missing an encounter with his Saviour. When we are absent we miss out on the blessing. Bartholomew (Nathanael) The Lord described him as a guileless soul, John 1. 45 - 51. Such character traits are rare, but like other qualities they can be lost through lack of prayer. ‘Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation’, Matt. 26. 41. Bartholomew had learned that attending the prayer meeting was necessary if a sweet Christ-like temperament was to be maintained.


He had been a greedy tax collector. Money had been big in his thinking, but he learned that security is found in prayer and not in healthy finances. He was seeking God’s things first by being at the prayer meeting, and he knew that God would supply his needs.

Simon Zelotes

The Zealots were freedom fighters. Their objective was to see the Romans expelled. Simon had joined the armed struggle, but an encounter with the Saviour transformed his life and he followed Him only to discover that one of his fellow-apostles had actually been a tax collector who had colluded with the Romans! Amazingly, the former terrorist and the former tax collector sat down together ‘with one accord’ at the prayer meeting. What a transformation the grace of God makes!

James the son of Alphaeus

Judas the brother of James

Of James the son of Alphaeus we know nothing, and all we know of Judas the brother of James is that he asked a question in the upper room, John 14. 22. These men were background people and yet they attended the prayer meeting. It is a place for all the people of God, men and women, v. 14. The men pray publicly, 1 Tim. 2. 8, but the presence of sisters is vitally important. Like Hannah they speak in their hearts; their lips may move although their voice will not be heard, 1 Sam. 1. 13. I ask again, are you marked ‘present’ or ‘absent’?