History of 24/7 Worship & Prayer
A Brief History of 24/7 Prayer and Worship
Night and day prayer changes the spiritual atmosphere of a city. No power can stop speedy justice that flows from night and day prayer. God does not ask anyone’s permission. Religious leaders and demons working together cannot stop the inevitable move of the Holy Spirit.
There is an irrefutable law in history that revival (justice) is released in a measure whenever night and day prayer is offered. When night and day prayer has been offered to God throughout history, God released a breakthrough of his power.
The Tabernacle of David
King David was a man of “one thing” (Psalm 27:4). Around 1000 BC, as an outflow of his heart, he commanded that the Ark of the Covenant be brought up on the shoulders of the Levites amidst the sound of songs and musical instruments to his new capital, Jerusalem. There he had it placed in a tent and appointed 288 prophetic singers and 4,000 musicians to minister before the Lord, “to make petition, to give thanks and to praise the Lord” day and night (1 Chronicles 15:1–17:27). This was unlike anything that had been done in Israel’s history, but it was God’s plan for Israel.
The Davidic Order of Worship
Although the tabernacle was replaced by a temple, the Davidic order of worship was embraced and reinstituted by seven subsequent leaders in the history of Israel and Judah. Each time this order of worship was reintroduced, spiritual breakthrough, deliverance and military victory followed.
- Solomon instructed that worship in the temple should be in accordance with the Davidic order (2 Chronicles 8:14–15).
- Jehoshaphat defeated Moab and Ammon by setting singers up in accordance with the Davidic order: singers at the front of the army singing the Great Hallel. Jehoshaphat reinstituted Davidic worship in the temple (2 Chr. 20:20–22, 28).
- Joash (2 Chronicles 23:1–24:27).
- Hezekiah cleansed and reconsecrated the temple, and reinstituted the Davidic order of worship (2 Chronicles 29:1–36; 30:21).
- Josiah reinstituted Davidic worship (2 Chronicles 35:1–27).
- Ezra and Nehemiah, returning from Babylon, reinstituted Davidic worship (Ezra 3:10; Nehemiah 12:28–47).
The Early Monastic Tradition of 24/7 Prayer
For over one thousand years monasticism (the practice of taking vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience to one’s spiritual superior) held a key role in the development of theology and practice in the Church. From the fourth and fifth centuries, monks and nuns were an accepted part of society. Monasticism is the cradle from which laus perennis, perpetual prayer, was birthed in the church age.
Bangor, Ireland, in 555 AD, under the leadership of Comgall and Columbanus. Night and day worship continued for over 300 years resulting in the thrusting forth of missionaries with apostolic power that touched all of Europe.
Clairvaux, France – in 1120 AD, Bernard and 700 monks gathered in Clairvaux (the valley of light to pray). This continued 24 hours a day for many years resulting in a dynamic release of evangelism through signs and wonders across Europe.
Herrnhut, Germany, in 1727 AD, under the leadership of Count Zinzendorf. Night and day intercession continued for over 120 years resulting in the thrusting forth of missionaries with apostolic power that touched many nations.
Seoul, Korea, In 1973, David Yonggi Cho, Pastor of the Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, established Prayer Mountain with night –and-day prayer. Cho had a commitment to continuous prayer, to faith and to establishing small discipleship cells in his church. Night and day prayer has been going on for almost 40 years.
Kansas City, MO, On September 19, 1999, the International House of Prayer of Kansas City, Missouri, started a worship-based prayer meeting that has continued for twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week ever since. With a similar vision to Zinzendorf, that the fire on the altar should never go out, there has never been a time when worship and prayer has not ascended to heaven since that date.
At the same time, in many other places around the world, God placed desires and plans for 24/7 prayer in the fabric of diverse ministries and in the hearts of leaders. This has resulted in 24/7 houses of prayer and prayer mountains being established in every continent of the earth.