The Tabernacle Scroll

Issue 19

"Whatever you ask in my name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son" - John 14:13

Christians face many challenges when they consider what is the right way to pray effectively. After all, we do want God to hear (and answer) our prayers! “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” [Jas. 5:16 b].

Hundreds of books have been written about prayer. Prayer has been defined in Catechisms ‘as the lifting up of your mind and heart to God”. Secular writers have described prayer as ‘conversation with God’. Many have advocated prayer as the means of ‘bringing heaven down to earth’. In fact, we pray “thy kingdom come”.

We are taught there are different types of prayer- prayers of intercession (i.e., for others); prayers of healing and deliverance; prayers of thanksgiving, petitioning and of consecration etc. The list is as long as we may choose to make it!

Again, we are constantly encouraged to have more zeal in prayer; to pray with more consistency; to have more faith when we pray; to pray with perseverance, etc.

Important and valid as all these are, there is one aspect of prayer that overrides all of these - and it is often missed! Jesus told the disciples that the requests made in His name would be fulfilled so that the Father may be glorified in the Son”. This tells us quite plainly that God’s desire to give us what we ask for is qualified by whether He and his Son are glorified in the prayer. In this passage Jesus was not talking about praising and glorifying God in prayer. He was talking about asking in prayer. He was implying that the motive for asking is not simply to satisfy our desires, but that God will be glorified through the prayer being answered (or even not answered). See the difference? When glorifying God is our primary concern, we can be confident that he will answer our prayer.

If we are prepared to be honest with ourselves, the Holy spirit would reveal to us when our praying is not really glorifying God, even though we might satisfy a lot of other criteria. He will reveal our selfish and self-centred prayers.

So, how should we ask of God? When we pray for anything for ourselves or for others, the right way to pray is “If what I ask will not glorify Your name, don’t grant it! And if you don’t grant my prayer, then enable me to keep praising and glorifying your name without it”. This is radical prayer. This is the type of asking that pleases God. It puts God first. Now be assured your prayers will be answered!

            Devotional                                                                                                                            Preach The Word The Word with Pastor Joseph Rodrigues