As a brand new Christian, I got myself into hot water at a Bible study when I suggested that perhaps, "in Jesus name" meant asking according to Jesus' will, rather than adding three words at the end of my prayer. Today, I sometimes say it, but for the most part I don't, or I say similar things like, "For the sake of Your Name".It's a North American phenomena, much like the "Prayer of Salvation". Having grown up and lived in Europe for the most part of my life, I was unfamiliar with hearing those words habitually added at the end of every prayer. I'm still convinced though that God answers european prayers too, if He wants to. :)
I like your thought on it that got you in hot water :) I was thinking about that exact thing when thinking of In Jesus' Name, I definitely like your alternative to using In Jesus' Name because it gets the point across that everyone answered prayer or even prayer in general should be For Jesus' Name to be glorified and honor.
A book on the history of prayer, that would be an interesting idea. Sounds like the job of a masters thesis student out there :-)I'm just guessing, but the form of prayer is probably an oral tradition.
by KingJimmy on 2010/8/12 19:56:56I'm just guessing, but the form of prayer is probably an oral tradition. ------------------------------------------------------------...one of many traditions of men...
Hello all and mguldner,mguldner, you make an interesting statement, "these are magical words God has placed at the end of our prayer so He knows we are done praying to Him that way we don't have any of those ackward times of Him mistaking us talking to Him when in reality we have been done for a while now and He can stop listening if He liked. . ."My first thought was, as if anyone could believe he stops listening - He hears everything, every thought, every heart impulse. My second thought was that in the past that was my thinking. I would say a prayer before laying down to sleep and then worry I might have forgotten to 'sign out,' and had gone on to thoughts that were not appropriate. Praise Jesus for cleansing my mind of the thoughts that do not fit after having opened communication with Almighty God. (Not that I am a finished work, don't think I believe that for one moment - I have a long, long way to go, it will be a life long work.)white stone
White Stone, I use to feel the same way that from the man made traditions I was raised in the prayer just didn't feel complete without the added In Jesus' Name Amen bit. I remember as a kid though like 6 or 7 I thought people were saying All Men and so confidently when everyone said Amen I said ALL MEN and got some terrible looks from my sunday school teachers as if I prayed wrong or some how ruined the entire prayer :) I am glad that God is slowly correcting these little things in my thoughts of Christianity and Him. I would actually do the same as you and think Oh No I didn't say Amen and then would say Lord if I forgot to say Amen, Amen.But its funny how religion has those kind of effects on us :)
It's funny. A lot of people say "amen" after a prayer, or when listening to a preacher preach, and don't even know what it means. They just do it religiously.And just in case you didn't know, amen means "so be it." While having a sort of "yes, I agree" sort of nature, it's more of a declaration or command than simply a way of affirming something.
Hi Phanetheus...--> "...one of many traditions of men..."I agree...except that this particular phrase can be uttered WITHOUT being given over to a tradition. When I gave my life back to the Lord, I was quite unorthodox in regard to religious traditions. It wasn't that I didn't KNOW about some religious traditions (because my parents had required that I attend church meetings since even before my mother was saved). However, I was just unimpressed with so many of those traditions prior to meeting the Lord and reading the Word for what it is -- the very testament of God! I think that I read the Bible through at least a good six or seven times before I tried to even thought about "taking a stand" on certain doctrinal issues! Following my conversion to Christ from agnosticism as a teenager, I think that I felt the urge to "go along" with what I was being taught about everything from particular expressions in praise and worship to the words that I would use when I would pray. One Sunday morning, our congregation was involved in some vibrant praise and worship (typical of Pentecostal churches). I had been caught up in it...and had begun to imitate (sort of) the mannerisms of my youth leader who I trusted had a good relationship with the Lord. I remember being struck with an overwhelming feeling -- right in the middle of a song chorus -- that God was trying to tell me something. I stopped what I was doing and just closed my eyes and asked the Lord to speak to me. I just felt overwhelmed by the realization that the way that I was praising and worshiping the Lord, although quite sincere, was something of an attempt to reflect of how OTHERS were worshiping God. I just felt like the Lord was telling me to just "be yourself." This was a life-changing experience for me when I was a young teenager. I didn't have to conform to the ways that others worshiped or praised God. I didn't have to conform to the ways that others prayed...or talked...or taught. I could be myself in Christ! I say "myself" in a way that reflects the person that the Lord was leading me to become. Not every "tradition" is wrong. There are certainly things that have been handed down to us previously that are absolutely found in the Word of God. Yet the Church is filled with traditions that are "extracurricular" (in a Biblical sense). Some of these traditions are ancient and some are relatively new! Yet our model and standards should not be based on the teachings of others UNLESS they are confirming what we know (and/or verify) to be true from the Word of God!The modern church institution -- regardless of the denomination, sect or doctrinal variance -- holds plenty of traditions that are just unbiblical (even if they are not necessarily "wrong"). The early church met daily in homes or even outdoor walled pavilions (like Solomon's Colonnade). Signatures or repeated vows were not necessary for "membership" in the Church. There weren't many organized "programs" like most congregations offer. I have often wondered if a believer from the early church were to go through time to our modern institutions -- would they even recognize it as the "church?"For several years, I have been compiling a work entitled "Traditions of Men." It has been a work in progress throughout college, grad school and now life after school. In this work, I have been examining some long existing traditions of the Church -- some of which we don't even realize are traditions of men. This includes everything from some of our verbal expressions, institution of the "church," "church" buildings, meeting days (Sundays and Wednesdays, etc...), Christian lingo, and many other things that we may or may not know are traditions -- let alone traditions of men. Some of our longstanding traditions are even based upon "rewrappings" of pagan traditions (such as Easter and Christmas holidays...the format of most congregational meetings...or even the design of church sanctuaries, cathedrals and "steeples").The book that I have been compiling is an exposé of such traditions. It includes a chronological history of those traditions if it can be found (including what...if any...Scripture upon which those traditions are based). It is more or less a call to the simplicity of Biblical Christianity. Like I said, not every tradition is extra-biblical. There are some traditions that we NEED to return to that are undoubtedly established by the Word of God. Unfortunately, many others have been passed down from "good intentions" or even pagan integration. I believe that we need to be very careful which ones to offer much "sanctity" to. In this case, using "in the name of Jesus" can be honest attempt to "authorize" their prayers (or "spiritualize" it). It can also be a declaration of the authority by which a person is praying too. Like Jimmy said, there are plenty of expressions that many believers in Jesus use that have become quite "clichéd." I remember seeing a friend in college morph into this "walking cliché" of a charismatic evangelical. He started attending a particular congregation and quickly began walking and talking like the people he fellowshipped with. One day, he walked up to me as I was speaking with a non-believing classmate. This well-meaning Christian began an apparent evangelical diatribe subtly(?) directed at my classmate. He spoke about "jumping into the river" and "flowing in the river of the Lord" and being "washed by the blood of the Lamb" and "soaring on the wings of the wing." After this Christian was finished and had left, my classmate looked at me and asked, "What was he saying?" It seems that my friend's "Christianese" lingo was so confusing that it couldn't even be understood by a college student! I wish that we could all just "be ourselves" in the sense that we are who we are in Christ Jesus without any pretense. We don't have to become fluent in "Christianese" language. We don't have to look, walk and talk like other Christians we know. After all, our example is Christ Jesus. His example is clearly demonstrated in the Word of God. We should be endeavoring to be a reflection of Christ to this world. If we do this with a pure heart and a clean conscience, we don't have to worry about pleasing others or "fitting in" to the common attitudes, lingo and other traditions of men.
Hi RoseMI agree totally with the man who is leading the Bible study at your church. Jesus wondered why we call Him Lord Lord and do not the do the things He says (Luke 6:46). In the Old Testament prophets spoke on behalf of God. God was offended by those who spoke presumptuously in His Name, or spoke falsely in His name: (Deut. 18:19-20; Jer. 14:14-15; 23:25; 27:15; 29:9, etc.). Did those prophets not use the name of God when they prophesied? When David sent ten young men to visit Nabal and told them to greet Nabal in his name, would they not have used Davids name when they met Nabal? (1Sam 25:5).In Luke 6:46 Jesus wonders: And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? In John 14:6 Jesus tells us plainly that no one comes to the Father but by/through Him. Jesus tells His disciples in John 14:14; John 15:16; John 16:23-24 and 26 to ask in His name. Why dont we just do it?Paul thanks God through Jesus Christ in Romans 1:8; 7:25 and closes by glorifying God through Jesus Christ in Romans 16:27. In Ephesians 5:20 Paul thanks God through Jesus Christ and he tells believers to thank God the Father through Jesus Christ in Col. 3:17.If one reads Jude 1:25 in another translation than KJV/NKJV, i.e. NIV, NASB, RSV we see that Jude glorifies God through Jesus Christ. If these things are written, shouldnt we speak them too? When Paul prays for the believers in Ephesus He addresses God as the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory (Eph. 1:17).In 1Peter 2:5 we offer spiritual sacrifices to God by/through Jesus Christ.In Hebrew 7:25 we read that Jesus is able to save us to the uttermost (forever) when we come (draw near) to God through Him (Jesus). Why not say it out loud: Father I come to You through Jesus, my Lord and Savior?In Revelation 12:11 they overcame the accuser by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony. Each time one calls in prayer on the name of Jesus, doesnt he or she testify to be a follower of Christ? Isnt that a part of the mandate of the Church as we read in Eph. 3:10?In His love,Hans
Hi ccchhhrrriiisss --WOW! Thanks ALOT for your post. I think that you really expressed how I was feeling but couldn't find the right words to say it. We all need to "be ourselves" in Christ, and look to His example. It's really true how much we can be influenced by other Christians and the way they carry themselves. btw...You should work on publishing "Traditions of Men" into a book. I would love to read something like that!Much love in Christ