How to Pray for Someone to Come Back to Life

How to Pray for Someone to Come Back to Life

Losing someone you love to the cold hands of death is the most devastating feeling ever. The thought of not being able to see that person again, to hear their voice or see their familiar face smiling at you could be unbearable. As you watch your loved one fast slipping away or when you receive that dreadful call that your loved one has passed away, it is almost impossible for you to process it in reality. If possible, the first thing you feel like doing is rush to see their body. Most people do this to find closure. Others in that moment of desperation feel if they are right there beside their loved one to call their name out loud, they might by some miracle recognize their voice and open their eyes. Then it would all be like a terrible nightmare that never happened.

As a Christian, the first thought that comes to mind when a loved one is pronounced clinically dead is to cry out to God in prayer. Many emotions course through you like shock, disbelief and pain. You badly want it to be a lie. You want to pray for your loved one to come back to life. At this moment, one’s faith is put to great test. Is it possible to bring the dead back to life? There are several cases recorded in the Scriptures where dead people were brought back to life.

During a time of great famine, the Lord led the Prophet Elijah to put up in the home of a widow in Zarephath. Later, the son of the woman fell ill and died. The woman accused the prophet of punishing her because of her sin, but Elijah took the dead boy and prayed over him. He stretched himself upon the child three times and cried to God in prayer. God heard him and the soul of the child returned to his body again, (1Kings 17:17-24).

There was a once rich woman who constantly showed hospitality to Prophet Elisha every time he visited Shunem. She made a guest room in her home especially for the man of God to lodge whenever stopped over. To reciprocate her kind gesture, Elisha prophesied that she would bear a child. She went on to have a son. This boy grew up and one day died suddenly after complaining about a headache. The Shunemite woman was distraught and rode out to seek Elisha. The prophet laid himself upon the body of the dead boy. He put his mouth on his mouth, his eyes on his eyes, and his hands upon his hands. He then walked to and fro the room where the dead boy was kept and repeated the same procedure again. The dead boy sneezed seven times and came back to life, (2Kings 4:8-36).

On another occasion, a funeral procession was carrying the dead body of a man for burial when they spied a band of Moabites invading the land of Israel. They were just by the tomb of the prophet Elisha who had died. Out of fear, they hurriedly threw in the dead man’s body into Elisha’s sephulcre as they tried to make good their escape. As soon as the dead man’s body touched Elisha’s bones, he was revived and brought back to life, (2Kings 13:20-21).

Our Lord Jesus Christ also raised a few people from the dead as recorded in the Gospels. He raised the daughter of Jairus from the dead (Mark 5:21-43), He raised Lazarus from the dead even though Lazarus had been dead for four days, (John 11:1-45). Jesus also raised the dead son of the widow of Nain, because he had compassion on her, (Luke 7: 11-17). Jesus Christ Himself resurrected from the dead, three days after he died, (Matthew 28:1-20; Mark 16:1-20; Luke 24:1-49; John 20:1-25). His death and resurrection is the most significant out of all the recorded cases because he died so that we can be set free from the power of sin and death. Through His victory over death, every Christian now has the guaranteed hope of everlasting life. This means that when we die, we have the assurance of rising again. Jesus assures us in His statement when He said, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live even after dying,” (John 11:25 NLT). Jesus also told us that in His Father’s house, there are many mansions. He was leaving this world temporarily to prepare a place for us in heaven after which He shall return to take us with Him, (John 14:2). This gives hope to every believer that a beautiful life in the hereafter awaits us if we walk in the path of righteousness.

Other people who were brought back to life as recorded in the bible include the saints in Jerusalem. On the day that Jesus died, an earthquake struck breaking open many graves and tombs in Jerusalem. Godly people who had died earlier were raised to life and were seen by many around the city, (Matthew 27:50-54). Tabitha was a woman who was well loved by everyone in the city of Joppa where she lived. One day she got very sick and died. Peter was moved by the testimonies of those who mourned her death. He prayed and brought her back to life, (Acts 9:36-42). A young man named Eutychus was sitting by the window sill and listening to Apostle Paul teaching. He dozed off and fell off to his death. Paul rushed outside and threw himself on the boy’s lifeless body. The boy came back to life and joined the rest of the believers in breaking bread, (Acts 20:7-12).

The way the bible presents the instances of people being brought back to life, makes it seem like it is not a big deal. Jesus made it look even easier when He worked his miracles and when He commanded his twelve disciples to do same. The Gospel of John says there would not be enough books in the world to record the actual number of miracles which Jesus performed. In fact, miracles were one of the core components of the Gospel. The bible is clear and consistent throughout its account: If you have faith, performing miracles is not a big deal. The big deal is building up your faith to the expected level of making such miracles happen. There were times that Jesus looked too modest and simple for the kind of power that he wielded, but He was deeply connected to His Father in heaven and always waited first to hear His instructions before acting. He fully submitted to His Father’s will. Remember when he was afraid to die? He asked God to take “the cup” away from Him. Later, He changed his mind and told God that He was prepared to accept God’s will in place of His own,(Luke 22:42).

One common trend can be observed from all these occurrences. Apart from our Lord Jesus Christ, most of the prophets and apostles who brought dead people back to life laid on top of the dead bodies they were praying for and stretched their bodies on top of them while praying. Was it a particular wisdom or instruction that they got from God? Can the same thing apply in Christianity today? There is maximum amount of power available to those who believe.


  1. Heavenly Father, I do not need anyone else. My only desire is to bring him/her back to life. Please Lord, quicken his/mortal body according to your word and breathe life into this flesh in Jesus mighty name! Amen.
  2. Lord Jesus, the scope of your authority knows no limits. You hold the keys to death and Hades. By your authority I command (call their name) to come back to life in Jesus mighty name, amen (Revelation 1:18).
  3. Lord, you commanded the eyes of our heart to be enlightened so that we can understand the hope of Your calling and what is the exceeding power of we who believe. I believe that You can bring (call their name) back to life. I call upon that same Spirit which raised Christ from the dead. I speak to this mortal body, be quickened in Jesus mighty name, amen! (Ephesians 1:18-19; Romans 8:11).
  4. Father, Your same mighty power raised Jesus from the dead and seated Him in the place of honour at Your right hand in the heavenly realms. I ask Father that you bring (call their name) back to life in Jesus mighty name, amen (Ephesians 1:20).
  5. Father, You have put all things under the authority of Christ. You have made him head over all things for the benefit us your earthly children. I call upon that same authority at this hour to bring (call their name) back to life in Jesus mighty name, amen.
  6. You promised in Your word that you will satisfy us with long life and show us your salvation. Lord, I call upon you right now. Do not forsake me now! Bring (call their name) back to life in Jesus name, amen (Psalm 91:16).
  7. I understand that my faith is being tested and I muster every fibre of faith in me to declare with all my heart that dry bones shall live again and therefore (call their name) can come back to life in Jesus mighty name, amen! (Ezekiel 37:1-28).

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