Death is one of the hardest things for any human being, as one is usually left with questions on why they had to be the ones to lose their loved ones. As a Christian, grieving a loved one has not been different from anyone else, as there are days that I fail to hold myself and ask God to lead my way. There are also days that I pray to God and ask him to grant my loved one eternal peace and rest wherever she is, hoping that I will be reunited with her one day. You may be in my position where you lost your loved one(s) and desire to pray for them and your strength. With this, you may ask, what are the prayers for the dead?”
Here is an excellent example of a prayer for the dead, “Dear Lord, I come to you today to thank you for the gift of life you have granted me. I humbly come before you with prayers for my deceased loved one. It has been a few months since you saw it fit to call her. Life has never been the same since she died, and grief has taken over my life. I pray that you may remember her and keep her soul at rest so that she may rest in eternal peace. Amen.
Kindly join me to the end of this article as we learn what the Bible says about praying for the dead. We will also look at ten powerful prayers you can make for the dead and many more.
What does the Bible say about praying for the dead?
The Bible does not encourage or preach against praying for the dead. However, few scriptures in the Bible can hint at what the Bible thinks about praying for the dead. The book of Ezekiel 18:20 suggests that only one who sins dies and that not even a mother will share the sins or guilt of the daughter, and vice versa. It suggests that if one dies as a righteous person, they will be given their reward, which is heaven, and if one dies as a wicked person, they will be judged according to their wickedness. With this, Religious scholars from got question ministries suggest that no prayer can change the fate of a loved one already dead.
The Bible also speculates that nothing happens to the dead regarding their salvation, as one is destined to face judgment the moment they die. This is mentioned in Hebrews 9:27. The Bible also suggests that righteous people who have accepted Jesus Christ as their lord and Savior will enter the Kingdom of God, as said in Luke 23:43, insinuating that there is no need to pray for them again.
The Bible, however, encourages us to mourn, as it states that blessed are those who mourn as they will be comforted. It is also essential as Christians to stand and pray for those who are grieving, as it is not easy to lose a loved one. In the Bible, we see that Jesus Christ is in pain after learning about the death of Lazarus, meaning that it is okay for humans to feel pain and even cry after a loss. We are encouraged to pray for strength, understanding, and hope that our loved one is safe in heaven.
10 prayers for the dead
A prayer for their souls to rest in peace
Dear Jesus, you know what I have been through since my loved one died. I lack peace most of the time, as I do not know if my loved one is in a happy place or not. Today, I pray that You grant them eternal rest, so their souls may be better as they wait for Your second coming. I also pray that you may shine your perpetual light upon them so that they may rest in peace. –Inspired by a traditional prayer made by the Catholic Church to the dead.
This prayer is specifically made for the dead loved one so that God gets to rest their soul in eternal peace. This prayer is supposed to assure you that your loved one is in a good place and that God has remembered them even in their death.
A prayer for their good deeds to be remembered
Lord Jesus, I pray for my departed loved one that you may grant her peace as you remember the good deeds that she did while on earth. I hope you bless her soul and remember her in your kingdom. I pray that you may bless her even in her death and that her deeds secure her a position in heaven. –Inspired by Revelations 14:13.
You can pray this prayer for God to accept them in heaven, as you remind him of the good deeds your loved one did while on earth. With this prayer, you will be assured that God will reward whatever good deeds your loved one did while they were on earth.
A prayer for hope and trust
Dear God, I come to you as I pray that you may grant me hope so that I may know that my loved one is safe and that you will grant their souls eternal life. There are many uncertainties about whether my loved one will ever be in your presence one day or if they will be among the righteous on the throne with you. I hope you will give me the hope that my loved one will have eternal life, just as your book implies. I also pray that during this challenging period, I may have complete trust in your promise of eternal life to us. Help me to lean more on your promises and understanding as I learn to trust you with all my heart. –Inspired by Proverbs 3:5-6.
Most of the time, we lack the trust and the hope that we will one day see our departed loved one. This prayer will assure you that you can trust God and hope in him that your loved one has been granted eternal rest.
A prayer for comfort in the loss
Dear God almighty, I come before you today with a very heart. My soul is weary, and my physical body is tired. I have cried and grieved for my loved one for a while now I do not see things getting better. I pray that you may comfort me, just as your book implies Matthew 5:4. I pray that you grant me the comfort you promised in the Bible so that my heart can be at peace.
You also promised to always walk with me, as your rod and staff comforted me. The death of my loved one left me in a dark place that feels like a valley. I pray that you may walk with me each day so that I may heal and see your light one day. –Inspired by Psalms 23:4.
You are meant to say this prayer when you seek comfort from God during your grieving moment. This prayer will give you the reassurance that surpasses any human understanding, as only God knows to calm our hearts.
A prayer for God to wipe my tears
My father, it is another day that I come to you with a heavy heart. I have cried for months now, and my eyes are tired. Tears can’t stop ruining my face, and I am tired of my upper clothes getting wet with tears. You are the only one who can genuinely wipe away my tears. Every time I start crying, I remember what you said in the Bible. I call upon you now that you may do as you promised so that I can have peace knowing that you are with me during this grief journey. –Inspired by Revelations 21:3-5.
We tend to show our pain by crying when we lose loved ones. You can say this prayer when you are in tears or have cried for a long time and want restoration from God. This prayer is meant to calm you down and give you peace and solace to overcome your grief.
A prayer that you may give me peace
Dear Jesus, I come to you today with a grateful heart. I pray that you may grant me peace even s I continue to mourn the death of my loved one. I also pray that you may comfort my troubled heart. You left gave us your peace and left us with it, and I pray that I may find this peace today even as I mourn. –Inspired by John 14:27.
This prayer is about seeking peace from God, as he assured us he would give us the peace we need. When you pray this prayer, expect an overwhelmingly positive feeling of peace that has been sent from God surrounding you.
A prayer to give thanks for everything
It has been months, and I can’t stop praying for your comfort and for my loved one’s soul to rest in peace. Today, I want to thank you for everything that has happened and is happening. Although I may have lost my loved one at a time, I didn’t feel I deserved the pain, and your word reminded me that you are always good every time and that I should give thanks to you.1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 also suggests that I should rejoice always and pray continually, as I give thanks in every circumstance. Any time I feel this situation bothers me, kindly remind me that what happened is your will and that I should thank you. –Inspired by Psalms 107:1.
This prayer is for telling God a thank you for what he has done in your life, despite what you are going through. Although you may have lost a loved one, there are different things that you are grateful for and thanking God for.
A prayer for God to fill the emptiness that has been left
Since my loved one passed away, I have continued to feel an emptiness that I can’t explain in my life. Most of the time, I even forget the purpose that you put me to fulfil on earth, as I feel that I cannot do anything without the support that my loved one used to offer me. I pray that you may feel whatever void and emptiness I feel with your peace and love. – Inspired by Dena Johnson.
After losing a loved one, you will feel a little empty for the first time. This prayer is meant to ask God to fill that void you feel so that you do not feel alone in your storm.
A prayer for strength
Might God, I pray that you may grant me strength as I try to come to terms with the loss of my loved ones. Most of the time, I feel like my heart and flesh are failing me after I fail to find a reason to keep going. During this time, I pray you may grant me the strength you promised in the Bible, that you are the strength of my heart. – Inspired by Psalms 73:26.
This prayer is meant to ask for strength from God, that he may grant you enough strength to keep going. God will provide you with whatever positivity you need and strengthen you again.
A prayer to experience joy again in my life
I remember the day my loved one was still alive. I still remember the happy moments and memories we shared, as nothing could separate us. Now that she has gone, I do not feel I deserve to be happy or joyous, as I lost one precious person who made my life joyful. I pray that you may restore joy and happiness in my life as you remind me why I am still alive. –Inspired by Ranuka Ramesar.
We always desire to be happy again after losing our loved ones, and this is a prayer you can make when you feel you want to be happy again. God will bring things into your life that will make you grateful and happy again.
Can you pray for the dead who are in purgatory?
The Catholic Church speculates that it is okay to pray for the dead who are in purgatory so that their time in purgatory may be easy. A Purgatory is a place where Catholics believe that the souls of dead people hang or wander on as they wait for their allowance into heaven. They believe this is where a dead person is sanctified or purified thoroughly so that they can access heaven with no sin.
Ways in which Catholics pray for the dead in purgatory is by holding mass for the dead. During a mass prayer for the dead in purgatory, the priest offers the Eucharist sacrifice of Christ Pasch so that they may be purified from any sin and made righteously to be able to see the kingdom of God.
How many times can you pray for a dead person?
You can pray as many times as you wish for a dead person, as no law or scripture gives us the exact number of times we should pray for the dead. When we lose our loved ones, we not only pray that God will remember their souls and keep them in a better place, but we also pray for peace and strength for those left alone on earth. If one prayer makes you feel connected and contented, it is okay. If you also feel like you have to pray multiple prayers to God concerning your dead person, go ahead and do so, as God is there to listen and answer our prayers, as suggested in Proverbs 15:29.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.