Friday, March 02, 2012

Prayer, and the Fall of Jerusalem

Pastor's always telling us that God never tells us to pray for something unless He promises to give it.  It sounds reasonable.  God promises to forgive our sins, and thus we pray, "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us."  He promises to provide for our temporal needs, and so He bids us pray, "Give us this day our daily bread."

But sometimes I still wonder.  Really?  If God tells us to pray for something, does that really mean He's promising it too?  Always?  Or is this valid only for the Our Father?

So, anyway, we're reading along in Matthew about the warnings of the approaching fall of Jerusalem and how it's connected to the end times.  In that section where Jesus is telling His followers about escaping the destruction, there's a verse (24:20) where He says, "Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath."  Hey!  How does this fit with the rubric that God's invitation to pray for something is also a promise to provide it for us?  After all, escaping Jerusalem was merely a temporal situation.  Surely it wasn't a promise too?

Guess what?  You look up the history of the Fall of Jerusalem, and you find that the Roman siege of the city began at Passover and ended in late summer.

I shouldn't find that freakily delightful.  But I do.

I should be certain
that these petitions are pleasing
to our Father in heaven,
and are heard by Him,
for He Himself has commanded us to pray in this way
and has promised to hear us.
"Amen, amen" means "yes, yes, it shall be so."

No comments:

Post a Comment