As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right (1 Samuel 12:23 NIV).
“Failing to pray” is a sin. Many Christians have not thought about failure to pray in this manner. It is not selfish kind of praying that is referred to here. But is is praying for others that is mentioned here. It is praying for others whom God has brought in contact with you; whom God has placed under your care. For example, if you are a Sunday School teacher, your primary duty is to pray for those children under your care.
“Failing to pray” is a sin against the Lord. This is because God has put you in a position of leadership. If you pray for those under your care, God will guide their lives. Samuel, for example, was a boy whose birth came about through his mother’s intense prayer. So when he became a leader he was able to say that he will not fail to pray. See what impact his mother’s prayer had on the nation of Israel. So if you fail to pray, you are sinning against the Lord.
You should ask why the Israelites asked Samuel to pray for them even though it was he who prayed to the Lord to send thunder and rain against them? It was because the people had confidence that he would pray for them. They knew that though Samuel showed them what was wrong with their conduct, he loved them enough to pray for them. Sometimes people in Christian leadership teach and correct with authority; but forget to do it in love and pray for those under their care. Samuel was different. He had the true heart of a leader. And he delivered what he promised. He prayed. In fact, he did not fail to pray. Can others say this of you: “He did not fail to pray” ?