It’s Christmas and the Christians are praying up storm, as they like to do this time of year. Interestingly enough, most of them have no clue as how to actually pray. Let me explain…
Jesus gave his followers very clear instructions on how to pray. This is called the Lord’s prayer and can be found in the book of Matthew and Luke (for some strange reason Mark and John are silent on this prayer).
The Lord’s payer, as we pretty much know it today, is losely based on Matthew 6:9-13:
“This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one’.”
Now, Christians have this part of the instructions down! They recite this prayer given every opportunity possible. It’s not hard to catch a Christian praying in the streets, among friends and family, public gatherings, graduations, sports games…pratically every event imaginable.
And why not? This is THE prayer. This is how Jesus taught his followers to pray to God almighty. There is no other way to pray in the New Testament. This is it!
However, right before the prayer language was given, Jesus instructed his followers that this should be only done in complete privacy!
“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”
Oddly enough, Christians tend to skip this part of the instructions. Either they are unaware or they willfully ignore Jesus’s instructions. No matter the reason, it’s not defensable.
So, what does this mean? According to Jesus himself, all Christians who perform prayer in public are hypocrites!
His words, not mine.
Thanks for reading,
Bible quotes come from the New International Version