When I read these verses, I realized that God was giving us instructions as well as urging us. Exhort means urging, strongly encouraging. Now, let us see what God was urging us to do?
He said, “First of all.” Now, stop here for a minute. His words “first of all” should show us that what He is about to ask us to do is important. We are to do it first.
Well, what are we to do first? To make supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks for all men.
Supplication means we are making a request and bringing a petition to God; earnestly and humbly for all men, for kings, those in authority (yes, even those we do not like and those in different political camps).
Prayer means entreat, implore, request. To me, it is talking to God and asking God to have mercy upon all men, kings, and those in authority. Request God to help them make wise decisions for their land and its people.
Intercession means intervening on behalf of another. We can intercede for others by praying for their needs to be met, both physical, emotional, and financial.
Giving thanks means thanking God. Once we have prayed for all men, kings, and those in authority, we need to thank God for answering our prayers for them. They need God too. By thanking God, we let Him know we expect Him to answer our prayers, and we are grateful that He does.
Why does He tell us to do this? It is for our own good. God truly wants us to live a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. That is what He wants for all of us.
Therefore, instead of bashing the political leaders, kings, and all men we do not care for, we need to obey God and pray for them. Remember God is the one who can change things . . .through prayer. This will be pleasing to God. He wants all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of truth.
We need to ask ourselves this question: had we rather spend our time doing what God said so we can have peaceable lives, or would we rather spend our time spewing anger, hate, and criticizing others? Where will this get us? There is no peace in this.
I happened to listen to two late-night talk show hosts about three years ago (I have not watched a late-night show since. I do not find bashing anybody funny, nor find humor at the expense of another human being funny.) I was startled that the entire commentary was spent bashing the President of the United States. When I heard them, I at once thought of 1 Timothy 2:1-4.Prayer: Lord, help each of us to come to you in prayer and thanksgiving each day and intercede for all men, kings, and men in authority everywhere regardless of whether we like and agree with them or not. We pray for them to come to know you, to come into the knowledge of truth, and to have wisdom to lead so that we can have a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. Help us to realize our responsibility as a child of God to pray and intercede for others, not just the ones we love and like, but also for those we do not like. In Jesus name. Amen