#DailyDevotion Prayer Must Be United With Faith
Read 1 Kng 8:22–30, 46–63
1Ki 8:28-30 ESV Yet have regard to the prayer of your servant and to his plea, O LORD my God, listening to the cry and to the prayer that your servant prays before you this day, (29) that your eyes may be open night and day toward this house, the place of which you have said, ‘My name shall be there,’ that you may listen to the prayer that your servant offers toward this place. (30) And listen to the plea of your servant and of your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. And listen in heaven your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive…46 “If they sin against you–for there is no one who does not sin–… (47) yet if they turn their heart in the land to which they have been carried captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captors, … (49) then hear in heaven your dwelling place their prayer and their plea, and maintain their cause (50) and forgive your people who have sinned against you, and all their transgressions that they have committed against you, and grant them ….
Prayer is not a means of grace nevertheless there can be no prayer without the grace of God in Christ Jesus. Solomon prays that the Lord’s name would be on the temple so that the people may be assured that when they offer up their prayers and sacrifices they will be heard. Yet there can be no prayer without faith in the Lord and in particularly today, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our prayers are heard despite our sins. Solomon ask that when they pray the Lord would forgive them. He states a very clear case that there is no one who does not sin. All alike are guilty before God. We have no claim before Him in ourselves why God should listen to us. But Solomon asked that when they pray, the Lord would hear and forgive.
We note also that they repentance which calls out to the Lord is not fake or contrived. It hates its sin and is terrified by the wrath of God. It calls out to the Lord remembering His promise of mercy, grace and forgiveness. One cannot offer up such a cry without faith in the One they are crying out to for help. Jesus taught us that when we pray the Father gives us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit intercedes for us praying for that which good and proper and necessary for us with words inexpressible at times.
If we are given the Holy Spirit and if thereby we have faith in Jesus Christ and His promise of mercy and forgiveness we can be certain we have received such mercy and forgiveness. The Lord must hear and deliver that forgiveness because He is faithful to His promises. He does not fail. He will not turn you away on account of the faith you have in His Son Jesus Christ.
And so while our prayers are not means of grace, the Lord our Heavenly Father, on account of prayers made in faith in Christ Jesus, delivers the means of grace to us so we may hear the word of forgiveness and receive those means of grace which He has prepared for us. Indeed the very act of prayer for forgiveness demonstrates we have already the one thing necessary, the name of Jesus.
Lord God, Heavenly Father, when we pray, grant us your Holy Spirit, that we may pray with faith in Christ Jesus and according to your will and deliver unto us those means through which we receive mercy and forgiveness from your gracious hand. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.