Scripture Reading:  John 14:12-14

“Whatever you ask in My name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.”  (John 14:13,14)

Praying in Jesus’ name is not just a formula to get God to answer our prayers.  Adding the words “in Jesus’ name,” does not obligate God to grant our requests.  The idea of “name it and claim it” is dangerous and self-centered.  The idea of such a notion is centered is the ridiculous notion that we are as wise as God.  All answered prayer is dependent upon the perfect will of God and not some particular words we use.  We are not required to add, “in Jesus’ name,” to all our prayers.  The outcome of our prayers is not dependent upon tacking on these words.  However, praying in Jesus name is an act of faith.

Praying in Jesus’ name reminds us that the only access we have to the Father is through Jesus:  “No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6b).  Jesus, our great High Priest, opened the way to the throne of God for us.  Jesus Christ made it possible for us to enter into the presence of God.  His atoning work on our behalf qualifies us to approach God.

Praying in Jesus’ name means to pray according to His will and character.  We are not to ask for anything that is contrary to His will.  He knows what is best for us and we should never ask for anything outside the bounds of His revealed will.  A person’s name in the ancient world represented what that person was like.  When we pray in Jesus’ name, we pray according to the character of Jesus, who id righteous, holy, gracious, merciful and just.

Jesus is also saying in this passage that it is appropriate for us to go directly to Him in prayer.  We are free to pray specifically to each of the Persons in the Godhead.  We can pray to the Father, to Jesus and to the Holy Spirit.

The essential requirement for effective prayer is faith.  We are to trust God to take our requests, consider them and answer them according to His perfect will and character.  Thus we should always pray with the understanding that God is all wise and all powerful.  We should trust Him for the outcome of our prayers and accept His answers graciously and with thanksgiving.

Lord Jesus, thank you for making access to the throne of grace possible for me,  that You allow me to lift my prayers up to You.  I know You hear my prayers, consider them and  do what is best for me.  May I always trust You when I pray, submit to Your will and glorify You in all my requests.  May I accept Your answers to my prayers graciously and with thanksgiving.


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