What is the best position for prayer?

Questions & Answers December 18, 2016

Q: Prayer is important in the life of a Christian. But in some churches there is a war about the best position — standing, kneeling, sitting — that someone can take in prayer. What does the Bible say about this? — Jackson, from Burundi

A: The Bible describes people praying in many different positions and situations. Daniel prayed three times a day while kneeling (Daniel 6:10). Standing for corporate prayer is also recorded (2 Chronicles 20: 5, 13). Job prayed while standing also (Job 30:20). Sitting and praying is relatively rare in the Bible, but David is recorded doing just that (2 Samuel 7:18). It is even recorded that praying while lying in bed is acceptable (Psalms 4:4; 63:6). There are also times when a person prostrates themselves completely while praying (1 Kings 1:47; Mark 14:35).

Ellen White tells us that it is a privilege to pray on our knees (“Gospel Workers,” p. 178), especially during the worship hour (“Prayer,” p. 205) because we show our dependence upon God this way (“Selected Messages,” Book 2, p. 312).

More on the subject of prayer posture can be found in a fine article by Angel Manuel Rodriguez on the Biblical Research Institute website.