And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? But ye have made it a den of thieves (Mark 11:17, King James Version).
Above we see a record of a teaching of Jesus about prayer. The scripture in 1 Cor 6:19 says that Christians are the temple of the Holy Spirit, which is the house of God. So when Jesus spoke about his house above, he was speaking as a member of the God-Head and what he means is that for Christians, his house should be a house of prayer, not a den of thieves.
The wisdom of the passage above therefore reveals that Jesus expects prayers to be a business not meant for a select few in the Church alone, but for all. He also brought out a fact that if his house is not treated as a house of prayer, it would become a den of thieves - a place where confusion and every evil work will thrive.
A den of thieves is characterized by all the manifestations that Satan brings; John 10:10 tells us He comes to steal, to kill and to destroy. It therefore means that when we leave prayer up to the prayer warriors alone, we expose ourselves to be prone to making our lives a haven for the manifestation of the deeds of the devil.
The point that is being made here is not that there should not be people dedicated in service to praying in God’s house. The point is that each of us should be effective, committed prayer warriors in our closet so that we do not make our lives a den of thieves. Jesus, in Mathew 6: 7 said When ye pray he did not say “If you pray” presupposing that it is mandatory that we pray, so prayer is a non-negotiable part of our Christian Walk.
Jesus prayed, The Apostles prayed, we must pray also. In fact the Lord expects us to pray without ceasing. (1 Thess 5:17). We are required to pray in the morning, in the afternoon, at night and in every place. We are expected to pray for all men, leaders, (1 Tim 2:1-8) our nation, ourselves, our friends, our enemies. The Lord indeed expects us to pray about everything, (Philippians 4:6; Mathew 5:44).
We learn to pray by praying; no matter how much we read or hear about praying, if we do not apply ourselves to praying, we will not know how sweet praying is neither are we going to know how to pray ourselves.
That God answers prayers is settled in His word. Jer 33:3 tells us if we call on God, He will answer us and show us great and mighty things we have not known before. The testimony of heroes of faith as detailed in the bible also tells us that God answers prayers.
We therefore admonish that we make a decision to live a life given to prayer so that we don’t make our lives a den of thieves.