Why should I pray to God alone? Please consider the following biblical reasons:
- There are scores of prayers recorded in the Holy Scriptures (the psalms and many others). You can take them as model prayers. All are addressed to God. Not one is addressed to the saints in heaven.
- When Mary was here on earth, she also prayed to God. Peter, James, John, the other apostles, Mary and other disciples were gathered together to pray. They prayed to the Lord (See Acts 1:14, 24). You honour Mary if you copy her godly example.
- The Bible tells us how to experience the communion of the saints. We are told to pray for the saints (Ephesians 6:18); i.e. to pray for one another; the Bible does not tell us to address our prayers to the departed saints.
- God hears the prayer of his people because he is omniscient. He hears you from heaven. He knows your heart; the saints in heaven do not. ‘For you, you only, know the hearts of all the children of mankind’ (1 Kings 8:39).
- Come to God in prayer with confidence, for ‘the LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love’ (Psalm 145:8).
- If you trust in Christ for salvation, then you are God’s adoptive child, and you were given the Spirit of adoption, crying out, ‘Abba, Father.’ If we ask, Jesus promised, we will receive, and he tells us why. If human parents answer their children’s pleas, “how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:7-11).
- Pray to God because he invites and promises his people: “You will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you.” (Jeremiah 29:13).
- Our infallible Teacher, the Lord Jesus Christ, taught his disciples to address their prayers to “our Father in heaven” (Matthew 6:9). You will not be misled if you obey his instructions.
(Gospel e-Letter - February 2018)